I read on a blog somewhere that a homeschool mom takes off every year between Thanksgiving and New Year's. She puts away all of the workbooks, pencils, and erasers.. and pulls out of her holiday picture books, assorted teas and coffees, and Christmas music. She exchanges her teacher manuals for cookie recipes and trades her structured school schedule for slow winter days of sipping hot chocolate with her babies, all curled around a good book together.
I LOVED IT. Things had been rushed and harried and not at all how I wanted to spend the holiday season. I decided to put all of our books away and take a strong and solid break. We didn't crack a workbook for 6 weeks.. And y'all. It was sooo niceeeee. The kids soaked in the festivities that December always brings and I enjoyed taking a step back and just coasting, letting each day go by slowly and simply.
It's amazing what rest does for our souls.. And I love that God set the example for us!! I know I've said this before, but rest is a GIFT from Him!! It's not something to run from or fight against, to push through so we can get all the things done. It's a blessing to pause for a time and refocus our attentions on Him. To remember where we were and all that He has brought us through. To recall His faithfulness.
So while we savored Him and our time with each other by putting our schoolwork and busy schedules on pause for a time, it energized me to find and read some WONDERFUL read-alouds (more on that in a later post!), teach the kids how to keep a fire going all day (I still can't start one. Thank God for those starter logs, ha!!), make buckets of hot chocolate, and we took more walks together than I can count.
I also printed out some adorable activities I found online (and bonus!! They were educational, too!!!!) Here are a few pictures from our "Christmas Math!!"
The kids each got a Christmas brownie with colorful ornaments. Not only did they have to count them all up, but they had to graph each color, too!!
Even Grant got to participate!!
After graphing each color, it was time to EAT IT!!!
So proud of my little children!!
What a wonderful (and tasty!) way to learn!!
My sister in law had the most wonderful idea!! We took Christmas pictures of all our kids out on the property.. and these are a few of my favorites:
The Poole Gang!!
Aunt Bec introduced the kids to Icees and they've been in love ever since, ha!!
Cutie little Poole grandbabies!!
A slow and simple life is such a full life. Purposefully resting gives you the permission to let time stand still. It's a breath of fresh air, blowing away the stale and mundane in order to savor the rich and satisfying gifts from the Lord, gifts we easily and regularly overlook. Like family pictures and Icees. Like the curls of smoke flowing out of the top of our chimney. Like the taste of peppermint hot chocolate and a Christmas tree brownie.
Stepping back from our regular workload to step into holiday menu planning, book reading, and resting by the fire from Thanksgiving to New Year's may have just become our new tradition.