Friday, December 6, 2013

a challenge of a day

Some days flow beautifully.  Kids are engaged and playful.  Meals are healthy and delicious and there are clean, matching socks to be found for everyone.  

Most days have some bumps and stutters that can be worked through with a minimum of upheaval and overwhelm, and an abundance of humor and (sometimes) grace.  Some days only one child at a time needs intense attention and comforting and there are enough Mama-arms to go around.  
Some days are so much more challenging than this.  Some days grace is difficult to find and so are all of the clean socks.  Some days it's hard to keep perspective.  Some days a child with a high level of emotional sensitivity clashes with a child with abundant energy.  Usually-peaceful playmates can get hung up on imaginary details and differences of opinion that cannot be easily smoothed over.
 Some days there just isn't enough quiet space or playmates or sunlight to soothe the needs and wants of Every Body.
Some cold and dreary days need an abundance of wheels and loud music in the driveway to shake things up.
 Roller skates, a tricycle, bicycles, scooters, and a crazy Mama dancing and singing along with random radio songs.  Apparently, that's what this challenge of a day needed!

Watch out chickens!

 A game of Hide, Tag, and Tickle pulled giant gulps of fresh air into our lungs that seemed to expel the last of the bad moods and personality clashes of the earlier part of the day.  Not sure of the rules, we made it up as we went along, but it was just the sort of healing, giggling play that we needed.
Plus, it would totally count as homeschool physical education if we kept track of such things.

Not all challenges can be successfully met with silliness, but they can all be bettered by an attitude of respect toward our children.

Some days a young, naked witch can be convinced to put on a warm Muggle disguise when it's about 0 degrees outside and it's time to get in the car.  The right amount of gentle humor can go along way towards peace and connection.  Putting the parental foot down might get a reluctant young one dressed, but at what loss of joy?  It might not always go well, but the challenging moments can be met with calmness and creativity and can show our children what cooperation looks like, what respect feels like, and can turn a challenge of a day into a way of strengthening our relationships.
Muggle disguise


  1. A touching, beautiful, honest post Nikole...we've had our share of these crazy days in recent months and I am trying to learn to handle them with such grace as we move closer and closer to unschooling our girls. With this two weeks off of "homeschool" for Christmas we see such benefits of unschooling as we let our days just flow for the most we just need to train ourselves to let go of what we have been taught all our lives and your blog is always such an inspiration.

  2. Thanks so much for taking the time to visit the blog and share your thoughts here, Brooke. It means a lot to me. Unschooling seems to be a continuous journey of seeing what works for us, what doesn't, and adjusting our expectations as needed :)


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