Do you want a peek into the typical morning of a homeschool mom? Yeah, me too. Is there even such a thing as a typical homeschool mom? I don’t know, but I’ll give you a peek into this homeschool mom’s morning.
It’s Monday. Monday’s the brand-new-notebook, clean-sheet-of-paper day of the week: fresh with possibilities. As I was waiting for the snoozed alarm to buzz (again) I could feel that this was going to be a great day. While I was contemplating whether or not to hit the snooze button again, I remembered that I needed to send lunches with the kids today and that we didn’t have any bread (that wasn’t moldy). No problem. While I waited for the coffee to brew, I pulled out the bread machine. I measured a cup of water and proceeded to make a loaf of bread. I even used the banana that was degenerating on the counter as the food for the yeast (so resourceful!). Peanut butter and jelly on white bread which has a hint of banana… if you haven’t tried this, you haven’t lived. (But please don’t try this if you have a peanut allergy because then the whole “you haven’t lived” thing might… never mind.) The bread machine was going to end its cycle in just enough time for us to slice the bread and make the sandwiches before we had to leave for the Conservatory.
I woke the kids up and then downloaded the flashcards for one of their Science Olympiad events so they could be productive in the car on the way to the Conservatory. I put the card stock paper in the printer, clicked two sided and print. Hmmm. The first side of one sheet printed, then it whooshed back into the printer to print the other side and nothing happened. Then the error light started blinking. I pulled the paper tray out. I pulled the ink out. The sheet of card stock had disappeared. Oh well. I hit print again. More flashing lights. Oh no! Ken notified me that the sheet of card stock hadn’t in fact disappeared, but had wedged itself up in the mechanism where it couldn’t be reached. He fiddled with it, and then declared that this printer can’t handle doing double-sided card stock, and he was sorry but he had to go to work; he’d work on it later. I’m pretty stubborn, so I worked (for too long) on getting the jammed paper out of the printer. I did get it out. YAY! I proceeded to print the flashcards one side at a time. I couldn’t figure out how to print only odd or even pages, so I had to print each page separately: Command P, select page 3, print; Command P, select page 5, print, and so on. This took much too long, but again, I’m stubborn. I had all the odd pages printed, so I put them back in the machine upside down and printed the even pages on the back. Voila! Now all I had to do was cut them apart.
Time for history. I’d been reading to the kids for a while when Madeline said, “Mom, I hate to interrupt, but what time did you say we had to leave?”
“We have to leave by 10:00, why?”
I could smell baking banana, and it was time to slice the bread, so I went over and lifted the lid to the bread machine. ARGH! No! I looked down on the counter and saw the measuring cup with a perfectly measured cup of water still sitting right there. I forgot to add the water! Again. I did this same thing last week! (I promised you a typical day, didn’t I?)
I quickly needed a plan B. I threw some leftover rice and leftover barbecue chicken in small plastic containers, and set the mess of hot flour kneaded with banana to deal with when we get home tonight.
I brewed some fresh coffee for the drive and we loaded the car with everything we’d need for the day: music books, clothes for soccer and cross country practices, lunches, schoolwork to do in the time between Conservatory and practices, snacks, flashcards for the ride in to town and back.
As we drove over the dirt roads I took a sip of the (HOT!) coffee and some ended up on my shirt. Maybe no one will notice.
I dabbed at my shirt with a kleenex and told the kids to study the flashcards. They studied diligently, and after about 20 minutes, I asked them to quiz each other. I was half listening when Madeline confidently answered that the definition of R-Selected Organisms was Decomposition of living organisms and their bi-products, Sammy then answered that Resource Partitioning was Water pollution that comes from many different places. Something seemed VERY off. Madeline pulled out the card for Omnivore, and said, “It says here on the card that it means natural streams of water of fairly large size flowing in a definite course or channel or series of diverging and converging channels, but doesn’t it also mean consumers that eat both plants and animals?” We stopped at a red light.
“Let me see those flashcards. Oh no! Oh my gosh! You guys need to forget everything you just studied.” Apparently, I messed up the printing of several pages: the fronts and backs weren’t aligned, so the definition of Omnivore ended up on the back of the Rivers card and the definition of R-Selected Organisms actually has nothing to do with decomposition of living organisms. Great! I have a feeling that this will be the ONE TIME they remember everything they studied verbatim.
At about this same moment (probably prompted by the idea of consuming meat and vegetables) I remembered that in the rush I forgot to include a fork or spoon in the kids’ lunches. They have rice and saucy chicken that they need to consume without utensils. I also forgot to include napkins.
This mom’s life is a utopia of fresh-baked bread and well organized plans. Of course it is. Just like yours is. Facebook says so. (If you aren’t fluent in sarcasm, then you probably should expand your language palate. I can make up some flashcard for you if you’d like.)
But in all honesty, I feel like I’m pretty typical (your Monday probably had a few bumps, too) and pretty blessed to live this life I get to live. Every part of a day might not be perfect, but it can still be a perfect day. Happy Monday!