I know lots of people find February tough, but I it’s a month I don’t mind so much. Now March and April are a different story up here in the North, but February is alright. Winter hasn’t over-stayed its welcome quite yet. It still feels cozy to sit by the fire with a book, and there is often sun and good snow to play in. We sometimes get a little warm spell and the roads melt out and we get all hopeful for spring even if we know in our hearts it is still months away.
But then, perhaps I should not talk too soon. Most of these pictures were taken in January. But right now, I am at peace with the weather and the winter. Homeschooling is going really well. We are reading good books and spending time with friends. February, so far, is treating us very well.
The boys are both up at the Nordic centre a lot these days- Starr especially, since he is on the ski team and is racing a bit this year. Both boys really enjoy their lessons, but Starr is passionate- he loves his friends there, and his coaches, and going as fast as physically possible, which is astoundingly fast. It sort of takes my breath away watching him. He flies. And he beams.
It is such a great sport for my little ball of energy who has always loved to push himself. I didn’t make it to his last race, but Perry texted me to tell me that he had been in the lead but ended up finishing just behind another skier, and while still gasping for breath he said “Awesome skiing!” to the kid who beat him. Without being prodded by the adults or told by his coaches he should say such things, which made me even more proud than the medal he brought home did.
And really, homeschooling has been going so great. We got a terrific tutor to come out here and work with Starr twice a week, which has helped create a lot of ease in our homeschool- taking the pressure off the mom/kid/teacher dynamic and letting us work on the the fun stuff and giving me more time to spend one-on-one with Ocean too.
Morning time is still saving our homeschool lives, and we have added in Story of the World there, which is great. We are now reading The Hobbit, and memorizing the dwarves song together:
Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away ere break of day
To seek the pale enchanted gold…
I love this new tradition. It’s funny. Our old curriculum was big on memory work too, but the boys were not having it then. I’m not sure it is the age or the context that has changed. I think the fairy-tale-in-verse sort of memorizing just didn’t fly for them- not interesting or cool enough, in their opinion. But Shakespeare and Tolkien- that’s cool. And I’m good with that.
And I got a year older. And was spoiled up nicely by my loves. The boys had a radio show near my birthday and they played a birthdayish tune for me and Starr said “This is for my Mama, who is turning 38.” and Ocean said “Wow! She is OLD! Well, at least she doesn’t need to use a walking cane yet!” and that made me laugh and snort a bit like the old lady I am.
And oh- this girl, this girl of mine! I am finding having a two year old such a riot this time around. She is so sweet and cheeky and hilarious. She is easy-going in many ways, but she’s got a mind of her own too. But when she stomps her foot and says “I wont, I wont, I WONT!” I have to suppress a giggle at the utter adorable-ness of her outbursts.
Plus, all the things they said about how different raising boys and girls is, appears actually to be true- at least in the small sample size of our little family. The kinds of play, the self control, the types of toys and interests, the bladder control- it’s all true.
For instance here she is reading books to her stuffed dog. If the boys had done such a thing it would have lasted 2.5 seconds before they leaped up and started jumping on the bed or building block towers to the moon. But Flora does this regularly and sits there for the better part of an hour. An hour, people.)
And I have been writing lots and dreaming up new projects, and feeling generally a lot more creatively inspired than I tend to be most winters. I was hoping to haul out the bins of yarn and fabric again and make a few things- I do miss it- but I’m not sure exactly how to fit it all in right now. But it’s winter, and the sun is shining, and the fire is crackling, and we are cozy in our little cabin home.