Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A Flexible Schedule

I homeschool the children in a way that means I rarely get a week day off during the school year, so I'm pretty tied up with them until after lunch Monday through Friday. Then, five afternoons a week, we have enrichment activities. This works for us, except for one thing.

I still have a million things to do outdoors. I actually plan the work load to be heavier between now and March, so that I can have more time to begin gardening. Fall sneaked up on us this year; Jason has been so busy with one thing and another, that he has not taken up the slack the way I have come to count on. Some things were outright errors, like I planted green beans so late that they were only barely coming on when we started school.

Fortunately, I have learned a bit of flexibility through the years, and the newest contortion is that Monday is not a "real" school day until probably snowfall.

The children handled it pretty well yesterday. Ezra is quite independent in his studies, relying on me primarily to follow up on readings or edit writing. Phaedra likes to have me in the neighborhood when she does math, but she managed with only a little nudging from Ezra. Sylvie did only a few things, as she still relies heavily on me to provide structure to her school day; still, she can have a few four-day-weeks in second grade.

I delighted in pulling up the eight-foot tall pole beans that hung dead and slimy from frost. I raked leaves and raked leaves and raked leaves. Do you have any idea how many leaves it takes to fill a 50' by 3' path? I only filled one of them, but I did hit some trouble spots around the ends of rows with cardboard and leaves. I layered hay onto three green bean beds, as well as the cucumber and chard beds. It doesn't sound like much, I know, but it took 6 hours. And I haven't even started on the new garden.

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