It has been so great to get back into the swing of things and start schooling at home again with Lilly Belle. We had a good 4 months of really not doing anything because everything was so crazy having a new baby in the house – a new baby with colic. Yikes!
Now that Lucy is 3 months old, and the colic is gone forever (thank God), we have jumped right back in to where we left off with preschool. It has been so much fun to spend this time with Lilly Belle again! It is not quite what I expected, but I am really learning to let go. Lucy still nurses every 2 hours (or sometimes more frequently than that even) and usually only naps 20-60 minutes at a time; an hour being lucky and 20-30 minutes the usual.
So right now, our school schedule is that we don’t have one. *GASP*
Photo By: Holly Hicks Photography
I tried to make one. I had it all set up in a perfect little graphed table. I had it planned to the minute each day. That was a joke and didn’t even last an hour. I immediately realized it was not going to work, took a deep breath, deleted the document from my computer, reminded myself that Lilly Belle is 3, we have a new baby, and in the big scheme of life – not having a schedule will not matter. It really won’t.
Our days have been beautiful. Super laid back and chill. We school around Lucy’s schedule and mood. We school around playdates and errands. We school at night. We school on the weekends. We school whenever we possibly can. And right now, that is working so well for us!
There are activities and errands that are constant every week. The fact that Lucy is for sure going to be awake for only an hour at a time (or less) is guaranteed (for now). Knowing that she will sleep for a least 20 minutes is guaranteed right now. It is certain that in the morning she sleeps longer and goes down quicker. As the day goes on, it takes longer to get her to sleep and she sleeps less each time. So, we do all of the curriculum activities during her first one or two morning naps. As the day goes on, Lilly Belle has to become more and more independent as Lucy becomes more and more dependent.
Each week I plan out the activities that I want Lilly Belle to work on. We work from our curriculums; The Peaceful Preschool, Bitty Beginnings and Simply Learning. I choose which activities are our must do’s and then once we get those accomplished we try to get as many more in as we can. It is incredibly how much Lilly Belle is learning and we are really only doing school together for 1-2 hours/day. I have her learning shelf set out each week that teaches her a ton! She is also learning an extreme amount from the things we do in our day to day life. We give her a lot of freedom and independence with guidance. If it doesn’t effect her or other living things health or safety, we try to not to intervene. Every week she has at least 3 play dates and we play outside all the time! I know that learning through play is the most important thing right now. It is so important to us that our girls have the opportunity to experience the world around them and to learn as much about their interests as possible. With that being said, Lilly Belle is currently enrolled in a weekly music/voice class as well as a weekly ballet/tap class. We also enjoy going to our local libraries story time each week which is a lot of singing and dancing as well. These also give her a ton of social time!
There have been game changers and with each month that passes there will be more and more. Lucy being able to last longer amounts of time on her activity mat, in the Bumbo, Mamaroo, or bouncy chair has been awesome. When she is awake but “playing” we do things together like reading stories, having dance parties, folding laundry, cleaning together, baking, or working on activities together from her learning shelf. We keep Lucy close by and talk to her about what we are doing. She just started being able to sit in her jumper and to grab at her toys, so those will be fun now as more activities for her too! She is needing to be held less and less – she used to be a baby who had to be held 24/7 and it was just impossible to do school…and that was okay!
The biggest thing I have found with motherhood and now homeschooling, is knowing that everything is a season. Nothing lasts forever. No stage is forever. One night I will sleep again. One day my preschooler won’t be tantruming on the floor. And one day I am really going to miss them being this little. It makes my heart hurt to think about. We are just soaking up each day. I am doing my absolute best to give them both equal attention. Some days I feel like I should get some kind of plaque for making that happen, and some days I go to bed feeling like I failed one of them miserably. It won’t always be perfect. It is going to be messy. It is going to be hard. And it is going to be so beautiful. I am loving this time of life so incredibly much. I love that I get to stay home and homeschool Lilly Belle for preschool. I love that I get to be home to nurse Lucy every feeding and be the one to see her smile all day. I feel so lucky and so thankful to Matt.
So for now – no schedule. Life is so relaxed. I’m not usually one to like that, but it has given me so much more freedom to really soak up our girls being little. I feel so present and so here. I can honestly say that I live for the day and that is everything!