Friday, November 10, 2006

The Almost-Perfect Day

Today is a day I will remember. It really was the almost-perfect homeschool day.

Thursday night, my insomnia had kicked in. Even though I had taken my Ambien, I still could not sleep. My husband was snoring. He was crossing the invisible line and was partly on my side of the bed. I just had to remove myself and go to the couch. Feather pillow, DVD of Brokeback Mountain and Stop Smoking book in tow, I trapsed off to the living room. I made myself a bowl of popcorn, poured myself a Diet Rite, hit the play button, and snuggled in on the couch with my super-soft Biederlak blanket, affectionately called the fuzzy, my feather pillow, two cats. The dog would have crawled up with us as well, but there wasn't room. Instead, he laid down right next to me.

The movie started, and I just closed my eyes and soaked in the beautiful music. I need to buy the soundtrack because I love that music. In fact, that's the only reason I put the movie on. I read a few chapters of my Stop Smoking book. I have never, in my life, taken so long to read a book. I think that is a sign of a true nicotine addict.

Anyway, with a full tummy, a good movie, and all those critters, I finally drifted off. The last time I looked at the clock it was four in the morning.

I awoke to the sounds of my husband turning the television off, then he gently tucked me in. I was aware of him, but didn't speak. I just enjoyed his gentle nature, the softness of the blanket and feather pillow.

A little while later I awoke to the sounds of Thomas's voice. I could hear Spongebob on the TV as well. "Mom, it's time to get up," he said softly. I grunted. I opened my eyes and found my beautiful son sitting on the loveseat across from me. I looked closely and he had his spelling book, his vocabulary book, his logic book, and his favorite of all, the nonfiction reading book. He was over there doing work on his own.

When he saw that my eyes were open, in a bright and cheery tone, he said, "Good morning! Dad got me up before he left for work. Mom, I have showered, had my breakfast and done a lot of school on my own. I figured you must have had a bad night so I decided to let you sleep."

What a sweet kid! I couldn't help but smile at that. I got up, got some coffee in my system, showered, and when I was finally coherent, Thomas was done with the majority of his work.

At this point I realized the poor dog had not been outside yet. Just as I was starting out the door, the phone rang. My husband asked me what I thought of the great outdoors this morning. Oh my gosh, thinking quick, I said that it was pretty. Running for the window, I discovered about five inches of snow. A beautiful snow it was, too. The sky was gray, but the snow was gleaming white and it was reflecting the light so that it was very bright out. It was a picture-perfect snow. Heavy, clinging to plants, trees, shrubs. Ah. It was still snowing as well, the great big fluffy white snowflakes.

After that, we set up my boom box in the living room and put in our Story of the World disk. We listened for about an hour. We looked at books that corresponded with our CD as it played. We snuggled for awhile in the chair, then Thomas moved to the floor and listened while he played with his legos.

We would pause the CD and he would ask questions, many of which I didn't know the answer to. We would get off track and discuss other things. We kept catching each other's glance and then smiling.

It was perfect. A morning filled with love.

After lunch we decided we'd visit the library. I had a great big list of books I wanted to get on the history topic we were studying. I was anxious to get to the library then get home so we could continue our lovely day. I was so sad when we got to the library and I learned it was closed for the weekend for Veteran's day! (Happy Veteran's day to all the vets out there -- and thank you!!!)

Not wanting to put a damper on our now almost-perfect day, we decided to go shopping. We don't go shopping during school hours, ever. We both just felt the need to not go home empty handed immediately, so I made the exception this one time.

Not wanting to go to a mart store, and because we were downtown, the only store that was of any interest at all was the Salvation Army. So off we went. They had a huge Christmas display set up. We were amazed at all the cheap artificial trees they had! They were in great condition, too. Thomas and I laughed as we came up with a brilliant idea. We decided that we should buy one of those trees because they were already assembled, take it home, and use it. Then after Christmas, we could take it apart, put it in a garbage bag, donate it back to the Salvation Army. Then we could repeat the process next year. That way we wouldn't have to put the tree together every year, our least favorite part of decorating for the holidays. $15 for a beautiful six-foot tree.

It was a good idea, but I didn't want to spend $15 and I knew my husband wouldn't be too keen on that. We left the tree, but we did come home with a Classical Christmas CD, with all our classical favorites. $1. Not a scratch on it. I also picked up one book for Thomas, My Side of the Mountain for a quarter.

At the register we got "the question." An old, gray-haired, stern-looking lady asked, "Why aren't you in school?" Thomas hesitated. I piped in and said we're done with school, we homeschool. I was expected a lecture, because there was a group of senior women gathered at the register, you know, the kind that appear to be judgmental. Well, I was the only one being judgmental. They were all very nice. The one I feared the most smiled and told us her niece homeschooled all six of her children. Whew. We didn't have to defend ourselves.

After that we came home. We shoveled the driveway, and I didn't even care that public school was not quite over. Thomas is a lot stronger this winter and he did an excellent job yielding his shovel. I think he was surprised at how heavy the snow was, though.

Thomas is now in the back building a snow fort. I stood at the window, sipping my hot chocolate, watching him.

Yes, today was a warm-feel-good-fuzzy loving, learn-and-absorb-a-great-deal kind of day.

A day I'll always remember.


tarajo said...

How sweet of both your husband and Thomas to let you sleep in and understand that you needed it. Those are the days that make the bad ones fade into the background

Sue said...

What a wonderful day! I love it when days turn into something warm and fuzzy. It makes homeschooling all the more special and precious! Thanks for stopping by the blog...I haven't seen you around for a while. Please do call your dad and thank him...I will my dad and grandpa too.


Mother Crone's Homeschool said...

That sounds like a perfect day!! I am jealous...we are so ready for snow here, now that the wood has been chopped!
Why don't you go out during school hours? Is it a law in MN? I carry a copy of the letter from the school district in my wallet, and we LOVE going out during the day for our shopping, hiking, and adventures. I hate crowds, so it suits me fine. Besides, my kids can homeschool from 8-10pm if they need to!

Frankie said...

Sue, I've been reading, but I'm lazy and read from Bloglines...which means I don't comment as often. I'll stop by more often because I enjoy your blog.

We don't go out during the day because I'm paranoid. The first year we HSed we drove to civilization and were in Hobby Lobby one afternoon and I got the riot act from the sales clerk. I just don't want to have to deal with that. Secondly, we have neighbors from hell directly across the street. They watch everything we do, have threatened to call the city on us when Thomas played in the gutter!! and I just don't like them watching my coming and going. (And they really do watch.) See? Pure paranoia, I admit it.

Anonymous said...

What a great day! I get the paranoia though. I am really implementing my "don't talk to my kids vibe" to get practiced up for next year when Jr. really starts getting asked the "why aren't you in school question". Though I am such a brat that I may simply stare silently back at them as it really, truly would be none of their business. hmmm that might be fun to do...

mull-berry said...

As far as kids being out during the day ... my sil used to cut hair at Supercuts ... it never ceased to amaze her that the majority of people getting their hair cut during normal working hours were usually sick. Kids, too, some even kicked out of school due to lice, etc., so she would ask mainly to protect herself ... if a customer had lice, she had to treat herself for it also since she came in contact.

So I keep that in mind when we go out, but the boys, esp. the younger one doesn't like to be singled out.

Anonymous said...

Definitely a great day! Maybe you need more nights with insomnia and days with snow ;)