In some ways, I am way more motivated than I used to be, but in others I am way lazier. One way in which I am lazier is by keeping us holed up at home because it is so much work to bundle us up, strap everyone into the car, get where ever we are going, keep us all together – you get the picture. But, that’s no reason to not get out and experience life, and every time I make the effort, I always feel excited about it; I’m always left with a natural high afterward.
This time of year is busy. We didn’t host Thanksgiving, for which I am eternally grateful, but we did attend two dinners Thursday, a few hours apart. Saturday we had another, and today, Sunday, I drove to my aunt’s a few hours away to pick up a dresser that she was giving to us. That’s a full holiday weekend in my opinion. I am not the type to have something going every day, actually, I don’t at all look forward to being a super-star soccer mom; I don’t like the run-around.
A friend had also told me a few weeks ago though about a Thanksgiving parade in Elmira on the Friday after Thanksgiving. She said it was pretty nice and pretty big for our area; she was planning to go with her kids and some of her family. I asked if we could meet up with them and tag along because it sounded neat. She was super nice and said yes and even called back to give me directions. I was on the fence about whether I wanted to commit to it up until the night before – not because I didn’t want to go, but because it is a little bit of a drive, and amongst all the other hubbub of the holiday, I wondered if I wanted to put the effort in.
Good news: Thursday, about 9pm, I finally decided that we would go. The forecast was not calling for extremely cold weather. I had not told the kids about the parade, so Elizabeth had not been pestering me about it. I just needed to get some UMPH! under me and do it!
And we made it! I put the effort in, and we made it – on time – and it was fun. We saw the characters from Frozen, some super heroes, the singing hampsters, local bands and dance crews, and even a pretty good Pirates of the Caribbean float. The kids had fun, both watching the parade and visiting with my friend’s kids, and it was fun for me.
I personally love to be out and about, but with all the work that it takes to get there with two kids under five, sometimes I just feel too lazy to do it. Yet I need to remember that the kids also love to be out and about, and I need to push myself to be sure that Elizabeth is involved in some kind of group activity next year, particularly one that I can leave her at, so that she has part of her week away from me. People always bring up the “socialization” thing when anyone mentions homeschooling, and mostly I just feel like rolling my eyes as I think my daughter is more socialized than some kids that go to public school, but I’ve got to be more diligent at keeping us involved. Currently, we do attend a weekly story time at our library, and we were attending church, although we are not anymore. Investigating local gymnastics and ballet classes for her age group, I have found them all to be on Wednesday, which is my husband’s only day off so that doesn’t work for us, as well they run with the school year and you can’t just jump in whenever because they all do some kind of production at the end of the season, thus we have kind of been locked out of them. I’m not very worried about Elizabeth’s lack of involvement in some kind of class or group right now, as she is only four, but I want to make sure that I make myself let her be involved next year, as she both needs and wants to be.
I find it is also good for me to be out and about. As I said, I love to be; I love to interact with people and just see different things. Paul enjoys being out of the house too; just like Elizabeth, I think he gets bored if we are at home too much. Besides, kids learn about the world around them by experiencing it. I just need to remember these thoughts when I feel unmotivated to put on the winter gear and pack us into the car; I need to push myself to just do it.
I’ll admit that in one way it was a fairly tiring long weekend, but in another it has also left me feeling energized by what I accomplished, and as I very rarely regret participating in life rather than watching it on tv, I reflect that this time was no different.
I hope you all had a very happy Thanksgiving!
Chime in: What are some things that you have to push yourself to participate in life and keep your homeschooling active? What are some ways in which you never seem to tire?