Monday, October 26, 2009
An In-exhaustive Me (& Thor) - Part 1
...so WHO AM I? Well, this will not be an exhaustive post, chronicling my life, my likes, my strengths, my goals....(thank the Lord, right?) BUT here I am with my hunky carpenter husband of 21 years, Thor, (that's what he says the grandkids will call him) at a small dinner we gave for friends and then, up above, by candlelight, on my 41st birthday this year when he gave me: a blue diamond ring, which is in the shape of a 16-patch, not on purpose, quite by accident (but even my man thinks in quilt pattens) & an entire day to myself without children or responsibilities, and then out to dinner that night.
Yep, I'm keeping him.
We met in the 9th grade and I still remember with clarity the very 1st time I ever saw Thor walk into the auditorium at Benjamin Banneker Academic High School in Washington, DC. I would have never believed, had you told the 14 yr old me back then, that I would marry that guy and have 7 kids with him! He's a hunky dude, though, that Thor is, so I didn't mind all that much, mind you.
For the last 20 yrs, I've been home with our kids (Jade, 20, Zach, 17, Noah, 15, Nadia, 12, Eliza-Jane, 10, Summer, 8 & Sarah Rose, 7) adding a new little person every two to three years for quite some time there, homeschooling and consulting and lecturing on the same subject, instructing quilting when I could, making as many quilts as I could by the time #3 was born 15+ yrs ago, gardening, helping my c-6 quad brother, baking hundreds of loaves of bread, and reading in the wee hours when my house was finally quiet. Just recently, on Sept 1, 2009, I had a major life change when after seeking a school for a change for my son, Noah, I happened upon a brand new school in the DC area that is so unique, so different that I had to take a second look. Before I knew it, I had jumped in with both feet because the perspective and the creativity with which the students will learn was so akin to homeschooling, and because I could finally get some help with teaching all these youngsters. My kids, who have never gone to school a day in their lives, are now enrolled, 3 of them in School for Tomorrow (www.schoolfortomorrow.net) and the youngest two, who are still called 'The Babies' at 7 & 8 are in 3rd grade in the school the new school rents from. Our oldest two are done and graduated.
AND me? I now teach in both schools full-time. On August 1, I had no idea that I'd be doing that on September 1, but it is such the right thing for the kids and me right now. I am still fully invested in their education, it still takes all day, just in a totally different way, especially since I now teach about 58 kids each week, from age 4-16.
And it has really altered my life. A lot. Homeschooling and being a Stay-At-Home mom is not for the faint of heart, most definitely, but if you do it long enough, you can work that thing good. You can sleep in occasionally, you can do school in the car as you run errands all day, you can take school to the playground at any given moment, and you can skip school because ultimately, life was always our real school.
But Thor still has this thing for dinner every night. And the rest of them, too! I have been a 'working' mom for 20 yrs, but working everyday away from home, that is getting trickier and trickier as the weeks progress. It has altered my ability to applique during math time, that's for sure! Can't do that when you're teaching other folks' kids in a private school. Well, you can't do that much at all in a school. Except I always have an applique block in my purse. Always. You can see some of my stuff here at WebShots.com.
So at lunch that's what you'll see me doing....more handwork than lunch. And my turquoise Tommie Jane Lane thimble is still about my neck every morning when I leave in the Suburban, hoping against hope that it'll get slipped on my finger a couple times a week at least. It wants to work 40 hours per week, too!
...more to come, one day.