So it’s been all change round here! It’s often only when sitting and reflecting at a later date that you realise just how much has gone on. Since my last post (was that really back in the summer?!) we have had to get rid of 2 cars, are potentially writing off the camper van, have bought a house and the boys have made the decision to give school a go. This last change, whilst probably not as major or stressful as house buying, has had the biggest impact on me and is probably why I stopped writing. This was, after all, a blog to document our Home Ed journey. I felt like I had no reason to be writing, lost my audience. But recently I have found I missed it. And several friends said they missed it too. So here I am. Domain name refreshed, hosting re purchased and ready to write! We will just see where the new learning journey takes us…
So what of all the changes? Well we can safely say that my boys HATE house hunting. With a passion! One of our last HE trips was to Kidzania, which I can highly recommend, and they were hilarious upon noticing the role play Estate agents. Kidzania, if you haven’t heard of it is an amazing indoor kids city where children get to try out around 60 jobs in authentic settings. Mine loved making burgers, training as pilot, firefighter, police officer, medic as well as trying their hand at security, hotel management, ice lolly making, air conditioning engineer… They loved it all. Just not the estate agents. No, not that one; they are scarred for life!
Preparing to move
We chose this house based on the fact that they have equal sized bedrooms which is great. The boys have been sharing for the last year so both were very excited to have their own space again. Two things which stood out and which I felt helped them to prepare were that C planned to graffiti his wall (in an artistic, neat kind of way!) and L asked several times for me to draw a map of how to get from his room to ours. Now this is no mansion and in fact he doesn’t even have to turn a corner to walk along the landing to get to me but this was definitely a reassurance he needed. We drew the first map one bedtime and he kept it under his pillow. When he lost it somehow it was always at bedtime that he asked for another map. This was his way of visualising the house prior to moving in.
We’ve moved a lot recently and each time we have treated it as an exciting adventure. The first time I had borrowed the set of Home Alone dvds and they watched the whole set while the removal men loaded the lorry, they loved it and I think have felt slightly let down on subsequent moves! Key to them not feeling anxious has been getting them involved with packing. Each time they have wrapped toys and packed their belongings. This has allayed any fears about where things are, but also has meant that seeing the rest of the house being slowly boxed up has had very little impact on them. I realised that it was especially important for a 3 year old, as he had assumed that the new people would simply move in and play with all his stuff. We can so easily take for granted that children know what’s going on, but all these experiences are brand new and often taken very literally. I hadn’t planned this level of involvement with too much thought, other than it was fun to involve them, but looking back I realise how much it did help in terms of coping strategies.
Our vendors moved across the road and so are now our lovely neighbours. I wonder if they will read this? If so I’m sure they would agree that they had a lovely, stylish, tidy home. We seem to have made our mark. Not in a good way! I kept to my word and have let C graffiti his name on his wall, it looks good. I haven’t managed to keep to my word on not shouting, which is a huge disappointment. I honestly thought that they would develop this huge sense of pride in their rooms, want to value their own space. Yes, I thought my children would miraculously change from being the messy boys they were, squashed into a tiny SFA, into proud home owners, but no. This has not been the case, and I wanting everything to look like it did in the photos, am getting far to stressed about mess. This needs to be my next change. Any tips gratefully received!
Back to school
Going back to school after two years of HE is tough on the parents. I have read lots of reflections of time spent home educating and have agonised over what is the right / best thing to do for us. I’m going with it’s right for right now. I think all experiences of this are useful to share and it will be a longer read so I think I’ll save that for another time. If its something you’re thinking about or have questions about do drop me a line or subscribe and I’ll be sharing what has and hasn’t worked so well for us as we made this move.