Life. Love. Family. Our Perfect Imperfection. Living life as a Catholic, homeschooling family with three amazing, unique boys, a too-oft serious, frustrated and anxious but also loving momma, and a fun-loving, hardworking dad.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

And we are off!

Taking some time for myself lately has entailed watching some TV shows, and printing off lots of paperwork!

It's been quite a while since I sat down and written anything. Far too long. My laptop is still on the fritz, so I'm sharing Jason's (turned-family-computer) laptop.

So much has been happening for us. Jason started his new job last month, but has been training up here in MI while we have been preparing to sell our home. He leaves MONDAY! to drive to South Florida. E and A have just over a week left of school, with their last day next Friday.

Our home went on the market just 3 weeks ago! Within a 10 days, we had an offer, and executed contract. Last week, we went through inspection, and just had the mortgage appraiser out on Tuesday, and the septic tank paperwork taken care of. The buyer has been satisfied so far, so unless something extraordinary happens, we should be closing on June 30th. I'm feeling beyond grateful that this process has been fairly painless so far.

We don't currently have a place to stay in FL, but the boys and I will stay here until Jason flies back to load the moving truck. Then we are spending a little over a week with my parents and visiting the inlaws, followed by about 10 days at my sister's house in Columbus, OH. Then we are off on our "little" roadtrip! A week or so visiting a friend in MD, another week near Greenville, SC "meeting" another, and then a drive down the coast, stopping in Charleston, Savannah, and wherever else we decide to on our way to the greater Miami area. While we are stretching our trip out some, Jason will be looking for a home and maybe even moving our things in. Better than all 5 of us staying in a little hotel room for over a month.

On a sad note, we had to euthanize our dog last week. His body was failing him, and though he was alert and aware, he could barely stand, couldn't get up and down the steps to go outside/come inside, and the night before, he laid on the floor and didn't move from that spot until after he passed away and was carried to the hospice vet's vehicle. I'm glad we decided to have her come to the house, where we could all be there, and he was in his home, comfortable, not in a cold room on the hard floor with just Jason. It was sad but also comforting.

As we are slowly packing our things, to move from the house we've lived in just shy of 5 years, in a state we've lived in for almost 6 years, I try to think of all the adventures we are going to have. Moving so far - 1500 miles - and away from family and friends, to a new state, a different climate (after all Michigan and Florida don't share much in common when it comes to weather/seasons) will surely be a challenge, but there is a whole new place to explore, people to meet, and things to learn. We are leaving behind so many friends that we've made over these last few years, and I, as well as Jason and the boys, will miss them very much. What's that saying? It's not goodbye, it's see you later? Everyone that has touched our lives will not be forgotten, and thanks to cell phones, the internet and social media, we don't have to lose contact. So, as I've been reminding my 12 and 10 year olds, we aren't just going to make new friends, we are going to add more to the ones we have. Friends are forever, and we just have to remember to cultivate the relationships. A had his last den meeting last Friday, and at the end, I was on the verge of bawling. The other parents are so awesome, and nice, and so are their boys. Then there's Julie and her 3 guys from Learning Life with 3 Sons, and the boys' friends from school and their parents. Not to mention that our parents, Jason's sisters and brother, one of my sisters, nieces and nephews, and now my little, sweet baby great-nephew won't be just a short drive from us! That may be the hardest part. I know we lived 8-10 hours away from them before when we lived in MD, but that was many years ago now. And Florida is the furthest from "home" we will have ever lived (well, minus Jason when he spent 6 months overseas as a contractor...). I'm scared, and excited, and just overwhelmed about it all. In the best possible way. I feel like everything is falling in to place BECAUSE this is what we are supposed to do right now for our family. The timing couldn't be better - end of the school year - and the house is selling quickly.

If you haven't been following on Facebook, you may not have seen our other announcement! And no, we aren't expecting a baby ;) We have made the decision, partly due to the large school size and poor rating, especially for high school where we are moving, that we are homeschooling the boys next year. There are other reasons, and because we have also tried every option out there besides this one (public, private, special and now public charter) we feel this is going to be a good fit. It took a lot of discussion, research and planning to come to the decision. Not something we chose lightly, and I really feel it is the best decision. Many who know me personally, know that I would have loved to homeschool from the start, but it wasn't in the cards for many reasons. That's ok. Now is the right time. We plan to go for a year, and then take it one year at a time from there. We will be doing an eclectic curriculum, a mix of classical and Charlotte Mason. Chronological (classical) history, starting with ancient history using living books and a textbook. Latin. Spelling. Grammar and writing using Institute for Excellence in Writing, Shakespeare, poetry, and novels for literature. Chemistry, biology and possibly physics (middle school focus subjects). Life of Fred middle school math (fractions and decimals & percents) and LOF beginning Algebra. Nature study. Bible study, Catechism and Saint study. Art and Music study. Handicrafts and life skills. Health and couch to 5k for PE. Maybe even throw in some Spanish after we get settled. With our move, we are taking some books for the start of the year with us, while the rest will go with the household goods. We are planning year-round school, per the boys' request (!) and my preference. 36 full weeks of school, starting July 27. Broken into two 18 week semesters.

The first 18 weeks will look like this:
5 weeks of school (7/27 - 8/28)
1 week break (8/31 - 9/4)
5 weeks of school (9/7 - 10/9)
1 week break (10/12 - 10/16)
5 weeks of school (10/19 - 11/20)
1 week Thanksgiving break (11/23 - 11/28)
3 weeks of school (11/30 - 12/18)
2 week Christmas break (12/21 - 1/1)

The second 18 will be:
5 weeks of school (1/4 - 2/5)
1 week break (2/8 - 2/12)
5 weeks of school (2/15 - 3/18)
2 weeks Easter break (3/21 - 4/1)
4 weeks of school (4/4 - 4/29)
1 week break (5/2 - 5/6)
4 weeks of school (5/9 - 6/3)

Summer break from June 4 - mid July with some reading and writing assignments probably and Nature Study just because ;)

On top of all the changes, we are also working towards 1000 hours outside! Slow going so far, but we are trying.

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