Our summer vacation consisted of visiting Niagra Falls with my mama and Brion's family for a few days and then ending that by coming home and doing 4 days of grassroots music festival sans our usual annual camping there. Coming back from even 5 days away from our routine was pretty rough....lots of tears, whining, arguing siblings, crying baby, and everyone forgetting what the heck it is we do at home/work. But we're back. A couple weeks later I'm starting to feel like we've detoxed from our own vacation finally, and are starting to get back into the routine of things.
During grassroots festival, Banyan decided he could make some money selling some origami. Malaya and him walked around soliciting random campers and festival goers for $1 in exchange for a nicely made paper crane. All in all, they made about $45! So this naturally led into our next lesson block on 'couting money' and some moral lessons on what one does with all this kind of money.
We went to a potluck recently of a herpatologist friend who showed us his insane collection of dozens of snakes, which made Banyan want to buy a snake. He know's he can't have a real one until he's atleast 10 and can afford to buy its food etc...so he started doing this begging obnoxious whining thing where he'd rant on for the entire day amidst psuedo tears that he wanted to go down to the toy store and purchase himself a large stuffed animal snake to play with. Yeah...here was our opportunity to have a lesson on spending ones' money wisely and learning to SAVE it. vs...being frivolous.
alot of whining and brainstorming later, We decided a craft project was in order. Banyan went into my fabric stash and pulled out some leftover fabric from last years' autumn capes. and TADA!!! Here we have in all his glory, a corallus snake, much like the one he saw from herpatologist friend. Handmade...and ahhh..no more whining! :)
Well done, Lesson one in not buying frivilous crap learned!
This spawned an entire week of random homemade crafting of things they've wanted to buy but i've said no to. And i've got to say, its been nice seeing how creative their minds get to create the things they want out of what they actually have available to them.
Here we have "darts" IE. Beeswax with feathers stuffed into them some of which have sharpened rock tips as "arrows" They spent a few afternoons playing target practice games on banyan's archery target. Each one that hit the bulls eye was worth 10pts, around 5pts etc.. and this lended itself naturally to a lesson in adding.
last year when I found out I was pregnant with Koa, I made a commitment to myself to not overcommit to anything I couldn't do with ease. To slow down and enjoy life more and "do" less. The other day when I was eager and thinking to rush out the door to go on a playdate, we were visited by this little fellow who reminded me of my commitment. So we stayed home and the day went much better than it would have if I had trying to do anything more.
When i stop and think about what i do all day... make 3 homemade meals, wash fold put aways loads of laundry, pay bills, mail letters, care for the animals, nurse a baby all day, teach my children how to read, write, spell, add, subtract, count money, have manners, care for the earth, respect one another, trust in god, drink enough water, get enough exercise, brush teeth etc etc etc... I realize. I'm already doing ENOUGH..so I let the extra curricular stuff slide, and watch my kids mellow out.
So we're doing summertime. In that SLOOOOW kind of way. Counting one penny at a time, taking one much needed nap at a time, eating one slowly prepared with love meal at a time. I think these simple moments are more important than all the vacations in the world, and I'm hoping my children's memories will be of what the sun felt like on a hot day, and how the clovers tasted and how they figured out how to make something themselves that they really wanted instead of rushing out to buy something new that will end up stuffed in a closet a few months later.