Homeschool: CGS

Today during our co op we are getting ready for Pascha!

Using the Catechism of the Good Shepherd program we did our Liturgy of Light presentation. Since here in seminary we really do not have the space for an actual atrium I have to modify my lessons and include a craft for the kids whenever it is my turn.

We gathered in the class today and all the kids were excited to be back since we have had sort of a hiatus for a while. The energy level was high and I knew it was going to be a sort of strict teacher day. We had the altar set up with the purple cloth first and remembered our church colors song and purple for preparing and white for celebration.

After the song I switched the altar cloth to white and put the big Pascha candle on it with flowers and the Good Shepherd icon. We talked about how Jesus walked on this earth and he said many things but one thing He said was that “I am the light of the world” as I said this I lit the big Pascha candle. 

I then called out each child by name and gave them their own blank candle and we learned the Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen greeting for Pascha. Then we processed with our candles 3 times singing the Christ is Risen troparion. Afterward the children sat down and I called each one by name to light their own candle from the big Pascha candle. They stood there for a little bit as we turned off the lights and saw their candles light up the room. 

For our craft we decorated the Pascha candles with puff paint and put ribbons on them so the children can use it for the Pascha service and the procession. It was a joy to see their faces light up.

What you can do at home: 

  • Make your own Easter vigil candles 
  • Get puff paint from Joanns or Michael’s 
  • Dye Easter eggs together 
  • Make a Easter basket for the priest to bless after the service
  • Buy fresh flowers for the house

Hope this is helpful in your Easter preparation.

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Homeschooling 

Just wanted to share our homeschooling week. We did a lot of stories and art and baking. My oldest son is getting better at baking and also measuring things. He really enjoys the stories that we read from Tell me a Story book and molding with our beeswax. These past 2 weeks we read the Polar Bear story and also the Do what you can do story from the same book. They are very simple stories but he absolutely loves them. 


Right now we have our own thing we are doing but hopefully next year we are going to do the Waldorf Essentials curriculum. Seminary life can be so hectic and the schedule for Lent is not an easy one so we are most likely going to be choosing one story a week and base our art and baking on that till the end of the semester. We still are doing our co op however I notice that it is harder to do with people that have a different philosophy about homeschooling than yourself. Mostly right now it is for the social aspect of things. Which brings me to ponder on school in general and how in the future I might just be a lot happier with a social gathering, not a co op gathering. Maybe even start a Waldorf co op? 

For the rest of our time we did a lot of playing outside with doing what boys do best. Answering the question of how dirty can we get?


Lots of building…


First signs of spring but it seems way too soon so our poems and stories range back and forth about the cold and warmer weather.


As for me a friend gave me a wonderful book to read about parenting from an Orthodox writer. I liked it a lot because it goes along with the peaceful parenting philosophy, which to me is encouraging since half the time I wonder if this whole philosophy works.


My husband is doing the March for Life in our nations capital so I get some time for myself. 


We have a Feast coming up next week for the Meeting in the Temple so I am doing the Good Shepherd presentation for that which I will post about.

Stay warm.

Blessings.

Changes

   
 
The hardest thing about seminary life is the part where you miss your family back home. Yes there is an occasional moment or two of loving living in NY, but in the end all our friends and family is back in CA. There are people that fit the criteria of potential friendship in a new place but in the end your true friends can’t ever be replaced. 

“At least we have each other,” my husband states. Yes that is true. As I watch my son riding away in Central Park and take in the magnificent fall that seems to surround you in NY, I think to myself… Family is all that matters. 

My hopes and wishes grow up with my boys and I hope that we will always be close. I hope my sons don’t hate me and I make good decisions for their lives. I hope…

Scene of the crime

  
As I sit quietly in my apartment while feeding my infant I hear a horrific scream from my oldest son who is playing outside with the next door neighbor.

As both me and my husband run towards him to see what is wrong we look down at his hand and realize that our son just got bit by the neighbors kid! What is a parent to do in the situation really? 

Thankfully the father of the child was really mad at his son and made sure he knew that biting is not an ok action to share with friends. 

While I listened to world war 3 (toddler version) waves pass into a calming stream I realized that my son is loosing his innocence.

He will soon be learning bad traits from kids and know that biting is not ok and maybe bite someone back. He will soon start defending himself because the world will bring experience his way. 

In the middle of all the drama I couldn’t help but think ahead in life  and appreciate this small battle he had to fight today. 

Yes they grow up too fast.

Battle

  
It seems lately that my house has become a battleground. My oldest son is refusing to take naps in the day and is really restless because of it. He has also developed a habit of peeing on the bed. For no apparent reason really. Maybe he thinks he is a puppy. 

Of course it is fitting for him to be looking at a sword book and teaching his younger brother battle tactics. 

“Chaaaarrge!” He yells as he holds his own sword and tells me to run after him. 

“Oh honey if only I can have your energy,” I think to myself as I lay there on the couch drinking my 3rd cup of coffee. I am beginning to think coffee has lost its effect on me or maybe it’s not strong enough. Whatever the reason I now drink coffee like water at 5pm and still can crash on the couch by 9pm.

Whoever wants to argue that motherhood is not at all hard and that we lay around all day doing nothing, can talk to me about what it’s like to clean up pee everyday (and try not to be mad) waking up at 4am everyday and dealing with a complaining toddler because he didn’t get his nap. No guarantees I will listen.

Back again…

  
Here I am again. Back after a long hiatus, one child added and a move to seminary for my husband to attend. I have decided once again to have what they call an “outlet” and start blogging again.

Adjusting to life with a brand new place and a new child and a new way of life has been difficult. But all of life seems to always be in some ways difficult right? 

What I miss the most is taking pictures. There’s nothing like taking a good photo for me. Captures a moment forever and nowadays sends them off to blog space and your life will somehow be recorded in some way for people to relate to or look back on. 

Yes this is my confession…