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Archive for June, 2012

I haven’t written in what seems like ages.  To say I haven’t missed it would be untrue because I have, but since school is out and a few friends and I have created a summer enrichment camp to keep our children active, unplugged and curious I have been so wrapped up in planning, field trips, and projects that I have hardly had the time to ache for it like I usually do.  My mind is whirring and buzzing with ideas that keep me busy all day and well into the night, but now the end of the month has come and I hear my blog calling.  I have no time and not much to say but I did manage to find a few minutes this morning as everyone arrived late because the kids were all so exhausted they slept in.

 Summer camp has been going on for about two weeks.  We average anywhere from, well my lowest was, two, for about an hour, all the way up to 13 children with various parents in attendance.  It has been crazy, messy, exhausting and wonderful.  Our first day with 13 was a bit overwhelming and I ended the day thinking, “oh no, I might not be able to do this,” but Wednesday came and we had a mere 9 and it was almost relaxing.  We learned about constellations, made star maps and decorated t-shirts with our favorite constellations that glow!  This week we learned the stories of Pegasus and Draco.  The boys made a mythical creatures card game and the girls made dragons, colored Pegasus and painted.  We made some cool dragon pictures that are worth framing and I sat back and marveled at how the activities I planned actually worked.

Every day after lunch we have reading time for 30 minutes.  Everybody reads, including me.  The kids each go off and find a quiet, comfortable spot and read.  The timer doesn’t start until everyone is settled and it is blissfully silent for the full half hour.  After reading time is free time and sometimes a few kids (can you believe it!) keep reading!! while others meander off to play outside or continue their work on a project they started earlier. 

After the first week I noticed my son was a little more polite and back to being curious about the world around him like he used to be.  My daughter and I spent some time swimming together and it was one of those moments I will hold as a memory of this summer.  My youngest passes out at bedtime and my son reads until he can’t keep his eyes open. 

In the simplest terms I am satisfied.  I know my kids are learning and engaged.  They are moving and getting outside and they are not only with friends, they are with me.  I am reminded that I am good at this.  Good with planning activities, entertaining kids and teaching my children that learning is an awesome adventure and I am bringing a few more along for the wild ride.  It’s going to be a good summer.

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We went camping this past weekend up at our new seasonal site and as I sat with my coffee Sunday morning, staring out into our own personal piece of the forest, I couldn’t help but notice the bugs flying and crawling around.  There were those who flew in a corkscrew motion which I thought had to be quite dizzying.  There were some that seemed to fall from above as if attached to a zip line, knowing where they were going and the exact moment they were going to get there.  There were the ones that zipped back and forth like workers at an office, getting this and getting that and getting things done.  There was one who tentatively flew upward as if he was unsure of his capabilities, but was still making steady and honorable progress.  A group of gnats was slamming themselves repeated into the fire-place wall causing me to marvel at the sheer ineffectiveness of their mode of travel.  There were others, in the leaf litter, hiding and hoping never to be seen.  And then there was the moth; sitting silently, not moving, waiting for night to return.

We often see connections in things that resonate within ourselves.  I am sure all those little bugs were doing what they were created to do without any specific considerations.  It was me who saw all those personalities.  Those were my thoughts.  There are days I feel like I’m flying in a corkscrew motion not getting anything done, days where I am flying repeated against a wall, days where I am making steady progress and occasionally  a day where I actually know where I’m going and when I’m going to get there.  But the moth, that seems to be my mode of existence.  It has taken 40 plus years for me to finally learn how to sit still and listen to my soul and there are more days than not when I do and then the darkness steals in and suddenly I am blinded by a bright light and spend the rest of the evening slamming myself into it thinking; “This is it!  This is it!  It has to be!  I’ll make it be!”  Until dawn illuminates the world and I can see the light for what it really is, an empty bulb now dark and insignificant.  And I learn.

But then the darkness returns and once again I repeat the same pattern but with a different bulb.  You would think after learning and growing so often I would be able to skip the denial part of the process, go right to accepting what the universe is trying to teach me and move things along so much more efficiently, but I don’t.  I run, avoid, and hide in the leaf litter. 

There’s a new lesson on the horizon.  I have stepped up numerous times and have turn-tailed and ran every time.  It’s not that I’m scared to learn it.  I’m just not brave enough to share it and if that is the case then this blog has become obsolete.  Because if I have to walk into unfamiliar territory to learn and can’t honestly share my journey then whatever I write won’t be here, won’t be real, won’t be who I am right now and as well written (or not) as it might be, if it’s not real then it holds no value.

I’m on the edge of another uncharted expanse, not sure of where I’m going or if I even want to get there.  I hear the call across the darkness and it’s warm and inviting, but I look back to where I am and what I know and again I am simply not sure.  I think I might stay here for a little while longer, fly a few circles, slam into a wall or two, maybe hide in the leaf litter for a bit.  The lesson will come as all of them do, in its own time and in its own way sometimes with the pointed force of a zip line and sometimes slowly and softly with the dawn of a new day.

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