Routine and Refreshment

We are now over two months into our new school year with everyone home, and a good six weeks into a full load of necessary therapies. By God’s grace, everything is fitting!

When Delia’s ABA therapy abruptly ended on March 13th, we had no idea that it would be seven months until they reopened for home visits. This time has been tougher on Delia than anyone else in our family. While she certainly didn’t mind the break, after a couple months of limited accountability and engagement, the cracks began to show. She retreated into herself and spent her days engaging as little as we would let her get away with over the summer. It was time to get back to business.

The day after I emailed to say that we would be willing to drive (almost an hour each way) to the therapy center for one session a week, they called me to say they had just reopened for home visits. Delia is now receiving 12 hours a week of much-needed therapy, all without interrupting anyone else’s school day. Although there has definitely been an adjustment period for her, it has been an incredible blessing to get back to this with her.

Lewis and Teddy are currently (as in, right now as I type this!) receiving private speech therapy twice a week, which is significantly more than they received in school. I’m excited to see how far they will go with this more intense, customized therapy. They are both bright and enthusiastic, and they love coming here. Also, I get an hour to myself in my car, which is just… ahhhh….

Everyone else is doing well, too. Pippa and Ro are both almost completely independent with their school, in 11th and 9th grades respectively. Pippa is also learning to drive and preparing to take the SATs in the spring, and Ro is working on editing the 470-page fantasy novel she wrote mostly during quarantine. Niko, Bea, and Junie (and Delia, when she’s available) are in “Trevor’s class” learning about the history of science this year, while I am teaching early American history to the younger set: Coraline, Annis, Teddy, and Lewis. After lunch we try to have some structured reading and math time for the kiddos that are less-self-directed. Everyone is making progress in their own way. Annis, 6, has become a great little reader and spends much of her time writing little stories. If I don’t keep an eye on her, actual school work can sometimes slip off her radar from time to time.

Annis has now written six books in her series “Annis’s Concerns”. She absolutely cracks us up.

Verity, 4, has been learning her letters and numbers, and Freya, 2, is talking up a storm and slowly getting the hang of potty training. Milo, 4 months!, continues to be a delicious little smoosh who makes everyone around him feel happy.

About a month ago, we got to have a wonderful week long break as a family. We began with 3 nights of tent camping with a few other homeschooling families. Trevor find himself unexpectedly in charge of leading a couple of hikes for a larger than usual number of kids. He seems to be a bit of a pied piper! All lost and wandering children were eventually found and returned to their parents šŸ™‚

We spent the next three nights, just the fifteen of us, in a delightful little rental house in a state park. The first full day was rainy, which was just perfect. Trevor took a small but intrepid contingent on a very wet hike, while most of us stayed home reading, crocheting, doing crossword puzzles (so addictive! I had no idea!) and sipping tea. The next day was beautiful, so we explored some of the local attractions, including Gravity Hill, where objects, including our 15-passenger van, appear to roll uphill! We were unconvinced at first, but the second location we tried certainly did what it said on the tin!

The final leg of our trip saw us at the Weavers’ homestead in central PA. It was cold camping for most of the kids, but Trevor and I and the little ones were fortunate enough to get a spot inside the house. It was the perfect end to a perfect week, a familiar home away from home with dear friends.

As we enter this season of thankfulness, I find myself having more to be thankful for than I can even put into words. Life is good right now. We seem to be, for the moment, finding that perfect balance of busy-ness and calm. I’m so aware that this season of still having little ones and also having everyone all under one roof will be over before I know it, and I am savoring every moment.

2 thoughts on “Routine and Refreshment

  1. Hi Jodi, Such a sweet post. The pictures of all the kids were so lovely, but Milo and Annis (I think?), at the end of the post were soooo cute and cheerful! I loved Annis’ book as well. My youngest, a 10 year old, is concerned about what job he will have and how he will “start a relationship with a girl” if he likes her. I have assured him he has time and should not be too concerned about these things at the moment. I’m so glad for Annis that her concerns at the moment revolve around hair and a poor memory! šŸ˜‰ This was a lovely post at a time when a few other blog that I have looked at recently are concerned with the much heavier topic of the US election.

    And I am so happy for you that you are feeling at peace with where you are right now. You are right, that this time with all of your little ones at home around you will last only a short time. My kids range in age from 24 to 10, and although I am so happy to see my older ones spreading their wings and growing into their own lives, I so miss the days when we were all home together. Getting everyone together only happens a few times a year now, and it is a feat of precise timing and scheduling that begins a month or more ahead of the planned date!

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