Slipping, Sliding, and Schooling

I shared this blurry cell-phone snap this morning on Facebook, but I couldn’t contain everything I wanted to say about it on a comment or caption. That’s why I keep this blog — my long-winded tendencies need a place to roost!

Susannah and Jonas built a “soft slip and slide” this morning. A few hours after I took this pic, they had added even more pillow cushions, throw pillows, and blankets “for soft protection.” Susannah is shirt-less in the photo because Jonas realized her sweater was creating static electricity! (Well, he didn’t know the word for it. But he told her the sweater “made her shocky” and when she took it off, they stopped zapping each other.) They played nicely for hours this morning, climbing up and sliding down…. then pretending Susannah was Rapunzel on the stair landing, and Jonas her hero climbing the wall to save her…. then pretending there were crocodiles in the foyer and the cushions were the only safe (bridge? hovercraft? not sure what the storyline was at that point) conveyance.
A friend of mine asked if they were in trouble for pulling all the cushions out, and my reply was “Nah. I actually delayed starting school so they could keep playing.” As I typed it, I wanted to add that one of my favorite perks of homeschooling is that it very rarely looks like [institutional]school AT home. I really think I prefer the terms home educating / home education, but homeschool is more commonly found in our vernacular, so I try to go with the flow.
I have to admit: I have days when I fantasize about the yellow bus whisking my brood away. I could clean the house top to bottom, and probably do all the grocery shopping, in those hours they were away. I could finish my scrapbooks and sort through the piles of “to donate? to keep? to ____?” stuff that crowds our office floor. I would be able to bake and cook without sticky fingers trying to ‘help’ and making more mess. I would have HOURS without refereeing fights, explaining the distributive property eight different ways, or even fixing food. (Contrary to popular belief, I think I could live without between-meal snacks if I didn’t make them for tiny humans every day. Tempting!)

But then, there’s another side of that coin. [I’ll state this again for any readers who haven’t heard me say it before: when I wax poetic about homeschooling, stay-at-home-mothering, breastfeeding, or any other choice we’ve made for our family — I’m not slamming on families for whom other choices have worked. I like to think that I can praise the positive and vent the negative of my system without it being an inherent comparison to any other family. Shalom and namaste, people.] 

If I sent them off to school, I would miss –they would miss out on!– mornings like this. It would be rush and bustle and meeting other peoples’ deadlines. There would be no time to create, imagine, play, and bond. Would they still be siblings? Yep. Would they still love each other, and have times like this on the weekends and holidays? Sure. But for now, this is the fabric of our family life. We’re together: climbing towers, leaping crocodiles, and discovering static electricity on a cold November morning.

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MICHELLE NEBEL

I write uplifting women’s fiction woven with threads of faith, grace, and Southern hospitality. My blog is where I share a glimpse of my life, and I hope you’ll find the thoughts here encouraging!

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1 thought on “Slipping, Sliding, and Schooling”

  1. I missed this blog when you originally wrote it – Beautifully said! I must admit I have moments when having a little time without children is tempting. But, like you, I LOVE the moments of free play, learning from life, and simply loving every second. I truly can not imagine life any other way. Blessings!

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