The lovely days of Autumn are upon us, and I, for one, am glad. It's hands down my favorite season. (Spring is beautiful too, but I can never enjoy it as fully as I'd like to due to allergies.) Here are a few bits and pieces from our busy life:
- We had a great time away last week. The first several days were spent at Semiahmoo, where Erik was attending a conference for work. Even though he had to attend meetings and workshops, it was so much nicer to be there with him than home alone with the kids, and we had plenty of time with him too. The kids enjoyed exploring the beach, finding rocks and shells, and breathing lots of fresh sea air. We also had a very nice visit with Stacy and her sweet family one day. After Erik's conference was over we headed North to Vancouver, British Columbia, where we spent the next two nights. The weather was cool and rainy, but we enjoyed walking around the city and seeing some of the sights. I was born and raised in Canada and always feel nostalgic to revisit my home country. Even though we're close neighbors, it really has its own feel, and it was good to be there again.
The kids enjoy the beach.
The view from Semiahmoo, looking across the bay into Canada.
- Being away gave me lots of time to reflect on life, to think about what's working and what isn't, to re-evaluate priorities and think about some new ways of doing things. Reading The Paradox of Choice has been enlightening, and has challenged me to structure my days more. Being faced, daily, with all the little questions of how to best run my household, is, to me, a source of stress. If I can have a master plan, a master menu, a basic schedule to follow, a lot of those little choices, and thus stresses, could be eliminated. Like my sister Alyssa once said "Do I enjoy the challenge of trying to figure out what to make for dinner at 4PM?" Planning, and sticking to my plan, doesn't come naturally to me, but it's an area I'd like to grow in. I'd like to come up with a basic monthly menu, but I started with just this week. I've also written out a basic schedule for the last two days, and so far it's been helpful. (You can read my previous thoughts, and fears, about scheduling here.) I know it's only two days, but it's a start, right? One day at a time....
- A few little Poppy-isms as of late: She confidently ordered "official chips please" off a menu one evening. It was the fish and chips she was going for! Another evening she enjoyed a "girl cheese sandwich." Today she found a woolly bear on our walk, and kept referring to it as a "gummy bear"!
- We're slowly getting school underway. I'll try to write more about what we're doing this year soon. Peregrine is officially kindergarten age this year, so it's our first "real" year of homeschool and so far we're enjoying it.
- Raphael is six months. Half a year. Precious. And can hardly wait to go fishing with Daddy.
- I've long wanted to start keeping a nature journal and make it a family project. Drawing, however, is not one of my skills. But I know it's something I can learn along with the kids, so I've been doing some drawing with Peregrine, following the instructions in his Draw Write Now books. It's actually fun, and has boosted my confidence enough to pull out an old blank notebook and make my very first, of hopefully many, entries! It's a very humble beginning, but a beginning it is.
Next up: a pin oak leaf and acorn gathered on our walks, and maybe this spider and her supper of wasp.