Homeschooling,  Life

May Updates: Closing our School year, Disasters on the Farm, and Big Changes

2018 is not our year.

I try to keep the negative talk to a minimum, but seriously, 2018 has been one long string of disasters. If I were superstitious I would be throwing salt over my shoulder, or whatever it is you’re supposed to do to break a string of bad luck, ha! From expensive car repairs x3, to my son’s freak accident (which broke his femur and landed him in the hospital for emergency surgery), to the crazy fire in our oven’s control panel (leaving us without a stove/oven until the new one is delivered in JULY), it has been one rough year! Our tractor is broken down, our John Deere riding lawnmower has already had to have 2 belts replaced, and I’m currently watching my husband attempt to repair an awning which broke and almost fell on him.

Oh, and we have a trap savvy raccoon that has been wreaking havoc on the farm for the past three weeks, and evading all attempts at capture.

Seriously. 2018 can go away now.

Our life is soon going to get even crazier, as my husband is transitioning out of his current job. We’ve been planning this for almost a year, yet it still feels incredibly stressful. He’s going back to school to become a nurse practitioner, which is awesome! I know he will be an incredible NP, and we are so excited for him to have this opportunity. Still, I’m a bit overwhelmed. The transition involves a lot of big decisions and is going to require us to simplify our lives in some big ways.

Between working and going to school (he will still have to work, just at a different job that doesn’t require traveling, etc.), the farm responsibility is going to fall primarily on my shoulders. Frankly, homeschooling two special needs kids, keeping up with their dietary restrictions (requiring me to cook almost everything from scratch), and keeping up with medical appointments/therapies already has me stretched pretty thin. I constantly feel behind on everything we do.

I love everything we are doing! Yet I know that we will have to simplify to survive these next few years of school. What that is going to look like, I don’t know yet. There are a lot of things we need to take into consideration. We have big decisions to make.

Speaking of needing to simplify (ha!), have I mentioned we are getting a puppy?? Yes, because a puppy to train is exactly what I need during this crazy transition! But Cowboy’s dog, Fiona, is 14 years old and deteriorating in health. She is hugely therapeutic for him. He loves her more than I can express, and it will be a terrible loss. Rather than “replacing” her after she passes, we decided to move forward with a puppy right now to ease that transition. We got connected with this Goldendoodle puppy and absolutely love her! We’ll be bringing her home in a few days. We believe she will be an excellent candidate for service dog training, which is our ultimate goal for our son. But if she washes out of training, we think she will still be a wonderful companion for him.

We’re officially on summer break now, which means we are spending pretty much all of our time outside with our animals. I’ll be honest, our school just sort of gently fizzled out rather than the triumphant finishing of curriculum that I prefer, ha! The box checker in me likes to check off all the boxes, but I admit we skipped some math reviews and the last few language lessons. I’m told that this is normal, that even public schools do this, and not to worry. So I won’t. 😉

We finished our school year with three weeks of relaxed read alouds and projects. We read some of our Irish fairy tales and listened to Celtic music for our Ireland unit. We started the Herb Fairies book club, which we’ll be continuing for a full calendar year (more on that later!) and planted a fairy garden.

 

Farmer Boy in particular loves the Herb Fairies books, and LOVES the fairy garden. He was so excited on Mother’s Day when we woke up and were surprised to find a fairy, an owl, and some fairy size gardening tools in the garden! He was so excited that the fairies brought me a Mother’s Day gift. 😉 I couldn’t break it to him that Brandon actually picked them up after he saw me oohing and ahhing over them at a local nursery.

We also ordered a caterpillar/butterfly kit from InsectLore for our Exploring Nature with Children study. It was such a fun project! I wish I would have taken more pictures. The kit came with 5 tiny caterpillars, which we watched grow, pupate, and transform into butterflies. We loved this project!

So our summer break began “officially” on Monday, and Farmer Boy is already asking to start our next term. Sorry, kiddo. You may be ready to go again, but I need a mental break to prepare for part 2 of 2018.

Hopefully our luck will turn around in June!

 

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