I am sure everyone has hopes and dreams and plans like we do. We spend a lot of time planning for someday. The reason we have trouble achieving our long-term plans, is because we tend to be very spontaneous, and never pass up opportunities that we are totally un prepared for.
So, this year, we each have a list of plans and goals that we have committed to for 2013.We each have to do everything we can do to achieve the goals we put on the board before 2014, and support each others pursuits to do the same.
There are some fun ones, like meet our new nephew/cousin, see a zebra, become a waste free home, swim in both oceans, learn to speak mandarin, make our own summer wardrobe…
There are some more serious ones though, that we needed to get started on right away, like downsizing our carbon footprint and getting entirely out of debt. These things are now achievable, because we took swift action. We decided to move to a much smaller, cheaper house, and sell off all of our un-necessary stuff immediately. We also got rid of many of our bills and expenses, and slashed our grocery budget by making things at home.
We want the kids to know the satisfaction of working on a goal you have committed to, until you are satisfied that it has been achieved.
Money management is a BIG one for Eric and I. We always have good intentions and fail-proof plans, but when opportunity comes-a-knocking, we tend to throw caution to the wind. There is also the life factor – new runners, birthday wishes, trips to the dentist. This year, we have created a way to balance these things, by planning for lifes hang ups AND super adventures.
The last year has been difficult. Selling our home that we all loved to become renters again, moving across the country to a strange (and expensive) new place, saying goodbye to friends and family.We have decided to make the most of it, and to stop looking back. All we need is a small, clean space to sleep, write, eat, study, etc. the rest of life can happen outdoors, on the road, and in the city. For instance, we no longer have a yard to grow vegetables in, but there IS a balcony for herbs, greens and tomatoes, and a community garden here that needs volunteers. We can’t have pets, but we can volunteer at the animal shelter. We no longer have a wood stove, but in the new place, we no longer have utility bills at all! Instead of splurging on take out, we have embarked upon a culinary adventure of learning to make these things for ourselves! It turns out, sushi is an outrageousy budget friendly meal – it cost about 7$ for a meal of homemade sushi rolls for all of us, vs. the 60$ we would have spent on take out. Who knew?
At the very least, it will be an interesting project. 1 year, of seeing what it is like to have very little space, and very little living expenses. In exchange, we get to travel a lot, say goodbye to our debt, become better and more reliable people, and get to know the city!
ON THE HOMESCHOOL FRONT
I have been quite busy with midterm reviews with the school board; submitting work summaries & samples, test results, reading logs, etc., as well as revising our plans for semester 2. Packing, getting ready for the new baby and deciding to cut down on our spending has meant cutting down on some of our expectations for the spring extracurricular plans, but it still looks pretty good!
- Future readers library program friday mornings (Elijah)
- running club (Hana & Elijah)
- Gymnastics (Hana, Elijah and possibly Avery)
- Clay Class @ the centre for creative arts Monday afternoons (Elijah & Hana)
- Phys ed. program every second week Sports & Shenanigans (Hana & Elijah)
- Homeschool swimming lessons (Hana & Elijah)
- Karate Tuesday & Thursdays (Elijah)
- Yoga Saturday mornings (Hana & Elijah)
- Jazz & Ballet Thursdays (Hana)
- Animal Shelter orientation (Hana)
- Skating Fridays & Saturdays (Hana & Elijah)
- Beginner skating (shockey basics) Tuesdays 1;45 (Elijah)
- Math block
- Language Arts block (poetry)
- Classic literature: continue with reading list (Currently Alexander Dumas Three musketeers)
- Cursive, English & French Spelling lists
- Creative writing journal
- Foreign language: French, Spanish and Mandarin (Rosetta Stone & Living Languages, also planning for tutors from the college)
- Music: guitar, piano & drums
- Science/health: Herb unit, Telus science class on reversible change, cookbook to accompany our Renegade Food Pyramid we constructed last semester, reflexology unit (BEarth institute)
- Social studies: The family is mapping out our month-long journey across Canada this July, featuring major cities, landmarks and national parks. We are also continuing with Story of the World, currently doing an intense review of Mesopotamia.
- Art: knitting, fabric dying, loom weaving, garment construction, candle & soap making, quilting, pottery, watercolor, charcoal, mixed media (centre for creative arts)