I (Sarah) write this from the comfort of a hotel room away from the distractions of children and home where there is always something that needs doing. Having not had more than just a few hours at a time to myself in the last 3 years, we felt is was time for a bit of breathing space to focus my thoughts and energies on recharging and getting refocused for the year ahead.
Towards the end of last year we were all feeling pretty worn out and emotionally and physically spent, so having a 3 week enforced break from FH over the Christmas period has been just what we have needed, to switch off from business, spend more time resting and creating good family memories as well as getting ourselves refocused and geared up for the new year ahead.
|A daddy and daughter trip to the devils tooth with some friends|
Following God's lead to homeschool Alana has been both rewarding and a privilege and yet has also thrown up many challenges and growing opportunities (the positive spin, on those horrible days), such as how does an introverted, task driven mother cope with having all 3 children around her 24/7, particularly with a daughter who likes to talk non stop. How do I decide what to teach, what is important to focus on. It gets rather daunting when the entire weight of your child's education rests on your shoulders. In this I have learnt (and keep relearning) to lean on God's shoulders and the wisdom of many who have gone before me down this road, for which the internet has been such a blessing for resources, ideas and advice.
|Alana featured as a rabbit at the end of year ballet show in Little red riding hood|
When I look back and see how far Alana has come this year I am encouraged and amazed. She started off the year barely able to write and recognise her letters clearly yet by the end of the year she was writing in both print and cursive form, forming her own sentences, spelling simple words, and reading with confidence both in English and Spanish, though Spanish proves to be more challenging. At the beginning of the year she could barely sit for 5 minutes to listen to me read a story yet now she will sit and listen to a whole chapter and ask for more (and not just when it's bed time). And wow, God has allowed me to play a part in that whole process. Maths has been a challenge for us both but am hopeful that a change in curriculum will help with that this year.
|The latest exhibits at the zoo|
By the end of 2013 I was worn out and exhausted and at an all time low, but as I look back now I can see the positives of the year and the growth in all of us, I can now look forward with excitement and anticipation for the new year to come.
Thank God for:
- A refreshing Christmas break
- A positive year of learning in homeschool
- Time for Sarah to get away and refresh
Ask God for:
- A clear focus for the new year
- A wives retreat that Sarah is organising for February
- Excitement for Isaiah starting at kindergarten in February
Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yolk upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yolk is easy and my burden is light.
Matthew 11: 28-29
Sarah, Ed, Alana, Isaiah & Lucas