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Time for me time

Last night I came across an article about why mothers usually stay up late. The reason was as to have some “peaceful” time which is ever so vital to our sanity and well being. My only problem is I actually need sleep. I’m not. 20 year old student anymore who went out partying on Friday and came home on Wednesday next week. 

When we started homeschooling I was desperate for “me” time. I would complain to my husband every night as of how little of that me time I was getting. He tried to “make it up to me” by taking the kids out or telling me to go out in the evening. The thing we were lacking was a balance and respect. 

This needed to come in place as my children needed to learn to respect my personal space and my choice of 5 min to myself. 

We started working on introducing this balance. Starting with an actual 5 minutes. Sometimes homeschooling is a bliss, we whizz through the subject, everyone is happy and the day flies by. But on many occasions we struggled with the topic and it took a lot out of me and the kids and after all we needed the time to unwind. 

Here is what we did:


Choosing a unwinding activity was a fun part, we decided on things we wanted to do on the particular day. 3 things a day , 3 things which made us happy.

For me as an adult was “having a cup of tea alone”  or “reading a chapter of my book without being called”

The children also chose things like “making Hama beads without being called by mum” or “reading in peace”.

You probably think “this will never work for us”, and maybe it won’t but it’s important to give it a go as it may actually help. 

It has change my children’s view of me, before I felt like I was being there to attend their every need. “Mum! I need scissors” they were laying on the table. “Mum! I can’t see my shoes” , every single thing.  

Now when I need time to be alone (we are still talking about 10min approx) to gather my thoughts , rethink stuff or simply drink hot tea. We call to “me ” Time where everyone stops what they are doing and work on their “me time activity”,

I’m sure things will change once the kids are older but for now this is what works for us, I don’t feel the need to “escape” from them anymore. I simply value my right to be me when I need to. 

Love and light xx

parenting

Lego education. Yay or nay??

When I started homeschooling I was all set for traditional schooling . Oh boy how wrong was I??

My kids hated the ” school” at home. We needed to change things and find things the kids actually enjoyed. And what is that the love the most??

LEGO.

Recently they introduced the Lego education services. The website offers more than one activities. We actually love them all. Sadly they are extremely expensive. Average family won’t be able to afford the services offered.

So we worked out a way to make it free.


First decide which skill you want to work on.

We choose the story building . The kids loved creating their own comic books.

Collecting Lego characters, building the scenery, finding a good spot for taking pictures. It was such a great fun!

We downloaded the story builder from Lego education website. It’s free to download.

Find the link here: https://education.lego.com/en-gb

There is also a free guide.


Because we have a lot of different sets on f Lego we were able to create endless stories.

We made some prompting cards which are available to download here


Here is the finished product

 

Print them, cut them out! have fun!

 

Here is our finished product:

 

Screen Shot 2017-06-04 at 21.53.12

We love adapting our way of learning. How our journey evolves is amazing.

Love and light. You are doing great x

parenting

DIY Lego Spinners

We are sitting in a not so busy coffee shop. Our usual Saturday morning treat. The place is local and we know pretty much everyone who walks past. This became our spot for public reading. It’s relaxing and we love doing that. New Archie comics for the older one, Barbie sticker book for the younger one and usually kindle for me, plus some hot chocolate and extra large coffee.

It’s quiet for a while, until the boy spots a friend and they both dissapear into the corner of the cafe, both leaning against something plastic and orange. I call him over to investigate.

He slowly comes up to me holding a little plastic toy, spinning it between his fingers.

“What is it?” I ask, looking at him.

Without taking his eyes of the spinning toy he whispers with admiration “Its a fidget spinner”

His eyes fixated on the spinning toy. No other reaction , that look , the same look when he is deep into a video game or something. The sense of addiction and possession in his eyes.

From that moment I knew that I would never buy one. Call me cruel, uncool but this toy is clearly designed to distract kids and create an obsession which would be hard to control.

For days my boy would ask for a spinner. He would beg, he would cry, he would do extra chores, just so he could get this piece of plastic.

We sat down and we talked about why he likes it and how we could resolve this situation without falling out completely.

“We could make one” , he said.

“Great idea, what would you make it out of?” I asked as in all honesty I had no idea.

“LEGO!”


And that was it, he was in his room tinkering spinners:

Her are his DIY spinners creations.


Why just not get him one you ask? Because he really didn’t need  one, he was being dragged in the new kid craze. This was not about the spinner, this was about coming up with something unique and something equally fun.

And we had tons of fun!!

parenting

Homeschooling, the idea behind it vs. the reality.

When I started homeschooling I had this Idea in my head that I would have all the time in the world. My house would be super duper organised, my children would have all the life skills they need to do the chores, cook and study. That they would always be smiling and with eager attitude follow all instructions.

My son would graduate college by the time he is 12 and that we would be super rich living f the amazing inventions he came up as a homeschooling genius child. We would live a proventional life , free from screen time and our children would produce hand calligrapher xmas cards for the entire 234 people in our extended family.

Everyone would love to be around our kids who would have amazing manners, answers to all existential question and would calculate complicated algebra in their heads.

I would get 8 h sleep every night, with our homemade high end designed curriculum being independent carried on by my children. No guaidance needed. I would sing and bake and wear a Cath Kidston apron. My blog would attract people from all over the world, and everyone would congratulate me on my successful book which I would write and publish and make millions.

Then the reality happened.

The slap from the universe.


The kids were up super early, they would refuse to complete various tasks. The house looked like a scene from a horror movie. Books everywhere, pencils, crayons, the sciccors went AWOL.

Day after day, there is no dinner, there is no organic chutneys being produced.

My nights were spend researching the internet for free ready made printables.

First week passes. I’m researching boarding schools, far away from home.

The kids would fuss and whine and forget to say please and thank you.

My university degree seemed now like a waste of time, money and effort.

I was being defeated by my own children.

Then I overheard my kids talking. “We may as well be at school..mum is so boring”

Proper punch from the universe this time.

My idealistic homeschooling dream has been ripped into pieces and burnt to ashes.

At this point I was ready to announce my own defeat. The realisation that I failed them was the worst. I wanted to give them the best start in life but instead I messed them up even more.

Husband who normally doesn’t get involved in my motherly existence decided to tell me his point of view. “Why are you being so hard on yourself and them?”

And that was it. That was all I needed.

My vision needed to be altered. My dreams needed to be made more achievable and realistic. There is nothing wrong with having high ambitions and aspirations, but to achieve them we need achievable and realistic goals.

I realised I needed to make this to work. To simplyfi, to make it interesting. It’s them who are being the centre of attention , it’s their homeschooling journey as much as it was mine.  The realisation came quickly with a lot of solutions. I didn’t need to spend my nights learning how to play a guitar, all I needed to do is to hire a tutor, online programmes and app were a big no no, but with the technology being the centre of attention and main income in modern society I realised I couldn’t stop my kids from using it.

We needed to find a balance, our main focus is still hands on learning, but now we use technology and we are not scared of implementing it.

Both kids do coding classes online and they both thrive in them. We concentrate on things that we know they kids are good at and that they enjoy. If there are subjects we struggle with we look for different solutions and approaches.

I’m not defeated, my dream is not over or never to be achieved, we get better and better everyday at realising the harmony of our idealistic homeschooling life.

So remember. Don’t be so hard on yourself, or them. You are doing great, you are doing what’s the best for your Family!

Light and love xxxx

parenting

How to actually achieve your Pinterest aspirations.

We are all guilty here …I’m officially obsessed with Pinterest.

I need last minute craft idea, Pinterest it, I need a dinner inspiration, Pinterest it, DIY queen you say? I say Pinterest it.

In a way Pinterest became an answer to all my problems.

I find myself Pinteresting in my head…

Today I realised I have pinned over 200 pins in the last 2 months. From which I maybe achieved 2. Sounds familiar?.

Therefore I made a deal with myself to help me using the inspirations more productive.

Here are some tips.

1. Limits your pins to 10 a week.   It was a struggle at first, but then I realised I was picking stuff which I actually liked, not just pinning for the sake of pinning it.

2. Set up yourself a realistic goal.  At the beginning of each week decide what you are actually looking for and if you will be able to actually realise the project. I once had a board which had 120 diy gifts ideas, I loved picking them up but realistically I never managed to actually achieve them.

3. Create a “dream” board. This has helped me to put my lovely pins which I had no way of achieving in a safe spot which I can always revisit.

4. Delete duplicated pins. There is a lot of ideas out there, there is also loads of them which are pretty much the same. So before you pin 13 mermaid tails tutorials ask yourself a question. Do I need this?

5. Revisit the pins. I have hundreds of them which I pinned but never looked at again. In a view of time management this 20 sec I used for pinning this useless pin I would never get back. 20sec x 50 pins a day= 1000 sec a day, that’s 16 minutes a day, 1.9 h a week , 98h a year, that’s 4.1days a year!
I hope that brightens a bit your day. And don’t forget to pin it for later!