It has been a while, but I am still swimming over here and very thankful. Nothing is wrong here, Baruch Hashem, just really busy and preoccupied with life. It has been a mentally strenuous several weeks, and I think we are almost there with the first step. 3 weeks ago we found a house! Woohoo! That is such good news for that means I can let boys go outside and do things, and they can do things inside, such as jumping jacks, or somersaults, etc. It has been a little difficult for we are on the second floor of the complex. We hear how it sounds when people walk – the neighbours upstairs are really good, but even when they just walk, the sound is magnified so much, it sounds like they stomp at every step. I can just imagine how it sounds for the neighbours downstairs when there are 6 of us just walking. Never mind if a beautiful boy accidentally gets off the couch a little to fast and the steps are a bit harder than usual, or, chas v’shalom, something drops!
There is no place here for children to play outside – except on the computers or at the TV down at the office, which is just too tempting. So, my boys are inside most of the time. 🙁 Don’t get me wrong – I am SO thankful that we have this place. It really is nice and laid out beautifully. The kitchen is huge and I could not have asked for a better kitchen, even in a house! It is just that I am looking forward to letting boys be a little bit more like boys again. They really need it (and so do I.) It has been a roller coaster of a ride trying to get this house and our realtor says we can now write a book on the process so we can help others. Hmm… my next book? 🙂 Though, in less than 2 short days we are hoping to sign and be almost there, with just the painting left to do before we officially move in.
It has been almost 4 months since we have moved here and I feel it has taken way to long to settle down into a routine. Though, looking back, I think my goals were unreasonable. They say that after having a baby, give it a whole year to get your homeschooling back on track. Well, if just adding one more member to the family can do that, imagine what putting all your things in storage for an unidentifiable amount of time, piling everyone and everything you absolutely need to “survive” until that unidentifiable amount of time decides to end, drive across the continent, setting up shop in a brand new place with new people, new places to live, new cultures, new schedules, new everything, and then saying, “Ok, now be normal and go back to how things were before.” Sorry, you can’t do it – the “laws of physics” won’t allow for that. Now, you can hope for a nais (miracle) for the “laws of physics” to change for you, but I don’t think that is what we are supposed to do. I finally sat down a few weeks ago and was able to make a schedule of some sort with most of our learning on it. Whatever is on the schedule seems to usually happen. It is just the stuff that did not have a spot, or that I forgot to add and therefore are still not there that get missed, but we will, G-d willing, work on that. I am coming to the thought that maybe, just maybe we really are doing okay and the fact that it has been less than 4 months and I feel we actually have a fairly good routine (albeit not the best, but at least it is a routine,) that I should be fairly happy.
The boys are doing really good. We have our days, but it seems like the occurrence of those days is less frequent and even when they happen, they are not as severe. The oldest has a full schedule with his college courses, and so I am not too involved with his learning now (*tears*), but I am still there helping him learn to organize when he does things. Trying to teach him to do a little of everything each day, rather than taking a whole day for one subject. One does not learn best that way. We are still working on that, but then it has only been 2 weeks since he has started, but I think we are getting there really fast. I realized during the first week of his classes that even though he does the work on his own, I really am still very involved in guidance. Every day. Multiple times a day. I am so grateful for that! He came home about a month ago and announced he was going to the Rabbi’s Gemara shiur every night before Maariv. He did not ask, he told me. Well, I can’t complain too much, he enjoys it, he is learning, he is keeping himself out of trouble, oh, and he can get there and back by himself. What more could a mother want?
I think the biggest and hardest change is the change in friends. It is hard to leave friends and then it can be harder to make new ones, especially if when making new friends you feel you have none to begin with (because you left them all behind.) Number 2 had it the hardest. He loves his friends and had a very hard time not only not having them but understanding that he can go make new ones and have double the friends. I think he is getting there. He met a new boy who moved to town just a few weeks before us who is also homeschooled. They have hit it off really well and he seems a lot happier now. Number 3 is my laid-back-go-with-the-flow kind of boy and really has settled down quickly and loves playing with their new found homeschool friend as well. Number 4 is getting there. He loves playing with his brothers (especially with the K’nex they just got!) and has always thought of them as his best friends. He is finding it a little hard when they all go out – learning, biking, etc. and he cannot go with them. He is slowly getting bigger now and now goes to shul on Friday night and Shabbos morning with the rest of the boys, and lucked out and was able to learn on Motzei Shabbos with all the Dads and sons at shul (so he could get pizza and prizes as well.)
We are going to closing in less than 2 days, which could not have come at a better time for next Wednesday is Tu B’Shevat, which means my little Number 2, who was born the smallest and who is the tallest of the 4 right now is going to be Bar Mitzvah! Where did the time go? To celebrate, we have lots of family coming over, and just last night the number doubled and more are coming! Wonder if I can keep the last group a secret until then? 😀
To add to the excitement, when people here found out that DH was a scoutmaster, we had many people BEG us to start a Jewish Boy Scout Troop here! So, what could we do since we have 3 boys we want in scouts who need to be in a Troop than to start one. It is official, we have adults and boys (and more joining) and are hoping to have our first meeting very shortly. We are in the middle of planning the first couple of meetings.
For me, it has been interesting getting up at 5:30 am, 7 days a week. I am definitely not a morning person, but I have found that it really gives me some “me” time. After getting DH off to work, and one boy to shul, I have a few minutes to veg out, exercise, shower and do some learning before I wake everyone else up. That was one thing that I was wanting in Rochester. I had a hard time starting our morning when we should have for I wanted to have my “me” time before the boys got up. Well, now I have it and it feels good to be accomplished so early! It helps make the rest of the day better.
Until next time, have a most wonderful week!