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We "want our very serve as HIS signature to all mankind so that all may know His work," Job 37:7

Saturday, October 22, 2011

So What's it like?

Many of you have been asking me about homeschooling the three oldest so I thought I might stop and let you guys in on the good , the bad and the funny. 
The Good.

This year we have been able to join a local Co-op group.  This group meets on Fridays were they have a variety of classes that are taught for different age groups.  It is so wonderful to be with a group of families that I can share my struggles with and know that they have been through it, are going through it or will go through what I am going through.  There is such a great since of community, love and support.  So wonderful to have the sweet spirit for the mom/dads (yes we do have a few homeschooling dads) and the kids.  Just a little sample: Korinna's classes include quilting, playdough economics (a personal fav of mine), flat stanley and fitness.  Just to let you know, she sits out on fitness.  We did it one day and well let's just say I did not enjoy seeing her snack return.    Elaina's classes include, Character First, Intro to Chess, History Around the World, and Crafts.  Josiah's classes are: Bugs, Science Experiements, Aesop Fables (Totally glad about this one.  I had this in my lesson plan but dropped it when I realized they were doing it. SCORE), and Karate.  Korinna's class is all girls and Josiah's is mostly boys.  We have also been blessed with some divinely inspired placement.  Let me explain.  One of the mom's was a physical therapist before she started homeschooling and one of the mom's has a myraid of degrees that focus with special education, behavioral disorders and children who need physical adaptions and of course one mom is a wonderful friend of mine from church who has a background in Special Education and has extensive relationship with Korinna.  These three women have been working with me and learning Korinna.  The point to all of that is so that Korinna and I will be able to take a break from one another at Co-op.  I am so proud of Korinna how hard she tries to give to these women who are trying to give her some independece from me. I am so thankful and appreciative of this opportunity.  All of the kids and mom look forward to going everyweek.  It is just such a blessing.  I have met some great folks and pray that we can continue to build these friendships.
Besides Co-op, we have adjusted fairly easily.  Josiah has jumped right in.  He enjoys reading new material and LOVES HISTORY.  He even listens in on the girls and then asks about it all day.  One day he took one senctence in a lesson about Ann Boleyn and wanted to research it to death.  He now has a wonderful knowledge about English history in the 1500's, English Reformation, and Henry the VIII. 
Elaina is still blazing through her work though having to stop more and think.
Korinna and I have made a few adjustments and feel that we are getting more done but there is still more to figure out how to do.
The Bad:
Korinna has hit us with a bad attitude.  The first day of school she cried and whined for 4 hours.  After extensive questioning we discovered.  She did not want to go to school.  She was sad that summer was over. We have also had her just stop working which is not good.  I think she as come to a point in her life were she is trying to find anything that she can control.  We have struggled with her.  This is a very hard part of having a child who is trapped in a body that she can't make work the way she wants. 
Elaina is more distracted by Josiah than Josiah is distracted by her.  I tried to seperate them but that put them in two different places in the dining room and Korinna and I in the living room.  We will be changing that SOON.
Josiah needs to move more than the girls do.  This I knew but tried to push the limits which resulted in a bad day for Josiah and myself.  I had to adjust. 
The Funny:
The funny has been the newest adjustment in Blankenship Academy and that is mostly due to this little boy.

He is so funny. 
I find myself laughing out loud or either leaving the room so I won't fall out laughing. I decided to share a few of his fabulous moments here. One reason is so that I won't forget them and two they are high-larious.

Several weeks ago Elaina had a loose tooth and she would not let anybody pull it.  So, you know what we were left with.  I tooth that could just about do a 360 in her mouth.  It was gross.  She would talk and it would wiggle.  Don't even let me describe what would happen if she started giggling and opened that mouth with that dangling piece of bone. YUCK!
Anyway, we were knee deep in school one morning and making great time.  It had come to the time in the day when we go to the living room to do history and science. Josiah yells back over his shoulder at Elaina, "C'mon crazy tooth."  I couldn't hold it in.  BAHAHAHA!!  What timing, what delivery! That one just jumped up and slapped you in the face.  What is even funnier is that, NO ONE, I mean NO ONE had called her that, or mentioned that tooth.  Elaina has a tendency to be very sensitive when it comes to stuff like that so E and I just let it be but Josiah is merciless.   

One morning as we are trying to get started with school when I discover that Josiah is missing. "Josiah come to your desk let's get started."
Josiah enters with a swagger in his step and a twang in his voice. He does this in his attempt to make his maleness known in a house full of girls. "Mom, I have good news and bad news." I pause and hold my breath.  I can tell he is about to deliver something that could change the whole day's pace.  "What Buddy?"
"The good news is I found my plane.  The bad news is I don't wanna do my school work?"
I loved it.  It brought an immediate grin to my face and warmth in my heart.  Though we still had to do school work.

One day Korinna had a therapy appointment in Birmingham.  It was going to be a long day so Nana came down to help out with the Josiah and Elaina. As I was getting ready to leave I gave them the run down.  They were going to go to church with E and we would not be back by then so it was important that everyone knew what was expected of them.
I gave Elaina her instructions for getting ready for church with ease, eye contact and her finishing it all off with a "Yes Ma'am."
I turn to Josiah. "Josiah you can not wear that shirt you have to change your shirt, brush your teeth and your hair. Okay?" The whole time he is staring down at a toy in his hands so I question him, "Jos, What did I say?"
He takes a deep breath, looks at me and leans against the door frame.  "You said to change my shirt, brush my teeth. And, if you are here, I will ask you to brush my hair?"  Out of the corner of my eye I saw my MIL cover her mouth, turning around and walking away with a slight motion in her shoulders as if she was laughing.  I look at Josiah and notice he noticed her too.  He tilted his head to the side and grinned his cutest grin. 

With the recent weather change her in Tuscaloosa, I had to run up in the attic and switch out some clothes.  While I was doing this Josiah was standing at the bottom of the steps gazing up into the attic.  They are not allowed up there.  It is just to dirty, cramped and unsafe.  He yells up the steps, "Mom, what are you doing?"
At this point I am searching as quickly as possible trying to find the right clothes I had stored up there for Leila. I grunt out, "I'm looking for something." Josiah returns rather quickly, "Mom, Is the attic your Batcave?"

I tell you the boy is funny. During some of the most intense moments he can deliver the perfect dose of comedy.  So there it is the good, the bad and the funny.  That sums up life at Blankenship Academy.  We get a lot of work done, some days more than others but we are always learning, always loving and always laughing.

Adoption update:
We are finished with our homestudy.  It now will go to immigration for approval. This can take 30 to 60 days. We are told it is running more like 45.  I am praying for 30 but will be prepared for 50.  I don't even want to think of  60 days.  The rest of our paperwork needed for our Dossier is done.  We are now just waiting.  We are having a Boston Butt sale to raise funds for our adoption.  If you live in the Tuscaloosa or Birmingham area I hope you will consider ordering your Boston Butt.  They are 30 dollars and pick up will be October 29 at 2210 University Blvd.  from 9-12.  You can email Me please put Boston Butt in the subject line. Keep praying for our baby all the way across the world, keep praying for our family as we start preparing our hearts for another child and keep praying for God's hand to guide our paperwork.   

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