* We just returned from our First Family of Seven vacation. Our excursion, courtesy of the Mister's occupation, took us to a waterpark hotel in the Wisconsin Dells from Thursday through Saturday.
The Mister had to work a convention on Friday, and I am proud to announce that I survived taking FIVE children, two of whom speak little English, to a huge waterpark by myself and not a single one of them drowned. Whoohoo!
The kids had a blast. I have zero pictures of Miles and Hatfield in the park, because those two are Water Slide Zombies. You couldn't keep them off of those things. Miles is a maniac--the bigger, crazier and faster the slide, the more he loved it. Every half hour those two would come skipping towards us, hand in hand, to check in, and we'd send them back out. Off they would go skipping, hand in hand (but not running of course, because then the lifeguards would blow their whistles, which terrified poor Miles.)
* Being out in public for the first time with all 5 children, we had our first realization that many people are interested in us. Some will bluntly ask, like the waitress who said "Are some of your children adopted? Or not yours?" to the sweet little 9 year old black girl named Tracy from Chicago who first asked me, "Are those kids your kids' friends?" and then wanted to know, with genuine, child-like interest, all about the boys and adoption. She then shared all about her family and we became fast friends.
* Today is our First Day of Homeschool for the 2009-2010 school year. Having the boys come home, separately, this summer threw off our best-laid intentions of homeschooling year-round. So this year, we are going back to a traditional calendar.
We came home Saturday to find out that it was also Box Day. VERY LITTLE is more exciting than when we receive the huge boxes of our Sonlight (www.sonlight.com) curricula. Hatfield was giddy, and it was adorable.
* Tomorrow is the First Day of School for Paloma and Miles. We are sending them to our local public school system's K-4. It's 3 hours each afternoon, 4 days a week.
Shortly after Miles came home, I came to the realization that either the 3 little ones or the 2 big kids would have to be send to school. At these ages, I can't do it all. Always a huge advocate of preschool, but unable to afford Montessori for 3 children (because, gee, it would only be $12,600 for the 3 of them), we decided that K-4 would be our best option. Both boys need ESL services, and Miles especially needs speech therapy. Both services are done through the school system, and doesn't it make it handy that they will already be in school when it's time for their services.
* For the first time, I've finally accepted not having a working computer during the day and have realized that I get WAY MORE done without having an available internet. I actually like not having that annoying little "hmmm, just five little more minutes of blog surfing" tug that was always pulling at me. Once the boys came home, I realized how much more mental energy I had because I wasn't consumed with the adoption. The same goes for not having internet.
But the Mister brings home his trusty little laptop each night, so I can keep on blogging and checking in on y'all. The best of both worlds.
Happy schooling to all of you in your first weeks out there!