Thursday, May 23, 2013

Wrapping It Up!

     It has been a really good school year, and we are now finishing it off with a flourish.  My boys really enjoyed their first year of home school and did very well.  We have already received our curriculum from Sonlight for next year, and my older son is really excited about that. Knowing how much my son will enjoy that curriculum, I too am excited about next year.  Having started my son on an independent reading program towards the end of the year, I have structured a continuation of that program for the summer.  I have him read for half an hour every day, and he is really enjoying it.
     At the end of the year, I spent some time  weighing the positives and negatives of our home school experience.  The first observation I made was that it actually drew us closer together.  The boys and I had a great time both in and out of the classroom.  Additionally, I received a greater insight into my little boys, their passions and their abilities.  Another benefit of homeschooling was the benefit of one on one instruction.  Certainly this could not be minimized.  Being able to spend that much time with my sons, I was able to really emphasize the areas of education that would most benefit them.  Then there was the tremendous allowing us to maximize the learning experience for them.  However, there were drawbacks along the way.  One of the drawbacks I observed was that I am not strong in the area of the fine arts.  Another weakness is the lack of social interaction.  We did plan for outside social interaction, but it still was somewhat limited; however, the benefits far outweighed the disadvantages.  It has been a great year.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Answered Prayer!

     For the past eighteen months, we have been living with bated breath as a huge old maple tree that dominated back lawn slowly split down the middle of the trunk.  With one half of the tree hanging over our home, held our breath every time we had storms with high winds. After I had checked with friends and neighbors on the cost of removing a similar size tree, I determined that I did not have the resources to have the tree cut down.  Every time a storm with high winds approached, we prayed for the Lord's protection; then finally I got smart and prayed that the Lord would provide someone to take down the tree for the resources I had available.  About a week later, I saw a couple of men doing some tree trimming on a property behind mine.  I was finally able to have the tree removed for a very reasonable price.  Our home is safe!
     However, while my wife and I are happy to see the tree gone because of the danger it represented, my elder son has on numerous occasions indicated his sadness at not having the tree there anymore.  I must admit I really liked the shade the tree provided and the beauty of the tree itself, but I am grateful we were able to take the tree down before it caused major damage to the house.  One plus is that we now have a huge woodpile to burn in our fireplace during the winter months.  It will also provide some great exercise splitting firewood this summer.
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