Happy Autumn everyone! It’s my favorite weather season at last, and soon will be my favorite season of the church calender, too – Advent…happy times! We’re a couple of weeks into our school year, and I’m rather pleased with how things are going at this point. The first week was a bit choppy, as we all managed to come down with swine flu. Now that we’re well and have gotten past the preliminary "lessons", its lovely to find out what works well, and to tweak what doesn’t work for us.
I do believe today might have been summer weather’s last hurrah at 92 degrees, and hopefully it will get cooler from here. In the midst of starting school, we also enjoyed visiting the apple orchard – fresh pears and apples, fun with dear friends, and lots of freshly pressed cider! It will be nice to have the cooler weather come just as we’re feeling more settled into our school routine – I must admit the first couple weeks were rocky in ways other than illness with plenty of attitude troubles!
I’m always amazed at how school seems to be largely for teaching character at this point – cheerfulness when corrected, working happily under authority, doing one’s best, being diligent and honest, being patient for one’s turn, doing our duty with a glad heart, and so much more is addressed more thoroughly than any math or reading lesson! But the math and reading lessons are there, and it’s fun to see how much each of my girls has grown. Isabelle writes just beautifully, and is very excited to be starting cursive (among other things) this year! Hannah has decided to write her lowercase "a’s" the way they are typed, so I often find her with her cute little tongue sticking out the side of her lips as she tries to get that little curlicue on top of the "a". She’s such a hard little worker, and seems to have quite the brain for numbers. Naomi’s speech has improved amazingly since last year, and since we use a lot of phonics for her speech practice, she’s learned all of her letters, too! We’ve also discovered she can draw a very convincing little pig. Juliette delights in drawing princesses and cakes, and making many, many "letters" for us to read. Alyssa has become quite the sweetheart at playing quietly during the big girls’ reading lessons (which is saying a lot for her!), and her favorite part of "school" is drinking a bottle and watching PraiseBaby in the middle. I think the little girls all like silly putty the best (they get to play with it while I read aloud), and the big girls all like the new Notgrass "Draw The Bible" lessons best (though I’d have to ask them, perhaps they’d pick a different favorite).
Today was one of those rare (and lovely) days in which we actually finished all of our planned schoolwork early, as well as our afternoon "fun" school. The girls got to veg and watch Tinkerbell while I was able to re-lock all of Naomi’s little braids! And Isabelle and I still made it to choir in time. It was a good day! Here’s hoping we all have more of the pleasant days and fewer of the challenging ones – though I suppose those are the ones God uses to sanctify us all the more. Happy new school year to you all!