Monday, December 8, 2014

Gift of Homeschooling

What a gift to be a homeschooling family.  We were able to take off the entire month of October to go on a much needed vacation.  It was our first real vacation.  It was also the first time my kids saw the ocean, or even rode on a boat, besides a canoe.  It was amazing.  As a good teacher-mom I made booklets for each child including all the states we'd go through, maps, and fun facts about each state.  We took different routes there and back, so my kids got to see 10 different states.  The trip down was mostly rainy, but it was still enjoyable. We got to see the landscape changing. They saw real mountains for the first time.  We also went to the Creation Museum and enjoyed their dinosaur exhibit.  They have one of 5 Allosaurus skeletons that were found nearly complete.  We also spent a lot of time reading.  They read to each other and I read to everyone.  It was a wonderful trip.  We had no movies in all 6 days of driving.  And they were  LONG days in the car with only stopping for potty breaks, but it was GREAT!  While we were basking out in the ocean I was again thankful for being a home school family. The beach wasn't packed like it would be on regular school holidays.  It was perfect.  We played in the waves, built sandcastles, found all kinds of shells.  We got to go on a boat ride and see dolphins.  The crew brought in a net and showed us what they caught. The kids got to see jelly fish, little squid, and all kinds of fish up close and personal. My eldest held a tiny squid! We had been studying ocean animals and this was a perfect way to wrap it up. They got to see how little clams dig deeper into the watery sand when you go to get them out. They watched a group of sharks swarm around the pier as fisherman cleaned fish and bloody fish fell into the water.  They saw people catch a sting ray right off the beach.  What an amazing time.

While we were there my two girls learned to swim without life jackets. We made so many memories and had so much fun!  I kept thinking how blessed I am that we could go on a vacation like this and that I didn't have to worry about "missing school".  We did some schooling in the car, but really the schooling we got from the trip was the type you can't learn in books.  It was experiences, being an eye witness to things they will not soon forget.

We even saw 49 of the 50 state license plates, how great is that!

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