Home Life & Home Education

August is the “end” of summer. End of summer vacation and time to get ready or head back to school.

While we still have another month of summer going into September, at least for me, September equals fall. August is that weird transition between the two seasons.

I don’t think I feel the same sort about other “transition” months. November is fall, February is winter, and May is spring in my mind. August is neither summer nor fall for me. It’s really weird.

That said, August is always a fun month: squeezing those final trips to the beach, pool time, but also getting ready to head back to school, which I loved.

I loved back-to-school shopping. Getting new notebooks, pencils, binders, backpacks. I was chatting about this with my mom the other day: I loved getting the school supplies more than I did getting the new outfits for the year. It was the highlight of my day to pick my desk; place my new binder filled with crisp, lined, loose-leaf paper in the top left-hand corner; and put my favorite new pen or pencil in the gutter at the top of my desk.

Why yes, I always tried to be the teacher’s pet when possible. How did you know?

As an adult, August grew to be a special month for me: Ash and I eloped at the beginning of the month seven years ago. We didn’t want to have a big fancy wedding or party, so we chose to get married in our living room with our closest friends surrounding us.

weddingphoto

I cried. So did Ash.

It was a wonderful, intimate experience that neither of us regrets. We are looking forward to many more anniversaries to come.

Additionally, on the years that Labor Day Weekend falls at the end of August (when the Monday is 1st or 2nd), it’s a time for celebration. Every Labor Day Weekend is a cause for celebration for me, but August has that little extra pizazz when it ends on such a high note.

Why? Because one of my favorite sci-fi/fantasy social events occurs from the Thursday spanning to the Monday of Labor Day Weekend. I talked a little bit about it here.

Focusing on Home and Education

Because August is such a fun and weird month for me, I wanted to focus on two of my favorite things: the home and education.

More specifically: I love to think about organizing and finding new ways to clean up clutter even though I have a love/hate relationship with the whole process. I will have posts ranging from purging mental clutter to physical clutter; from creating an effective schedule to maintaining it.

As a former college instructor, teaching is extremely important to me so I have a lot of respect for educators, especially from early childhood through high school teachers. From my time in the classroom, I recognized not only the importance of the previous education students received but the impact parents hard in supplementing and augmenting that education.

While Jai is still too young to attend any formal school setting, I wanted to examine ways that I can help get him started so he’s prepared for the day he first steps foot into a classroom. I want to focus on a more natural form of learning to keep it fun for him and in keeping with our way of gentle parenting him.

Stay tuned for a bunch of fun printables and tools coming up this month. I’ve enjoyed creating them and I hope you will enjoy using them.

Happy August, everyone!


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Featured Illustration: Michelle Melton Photography

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Wine and scotch with an Iron tumbler

Checking In: No More Alcohol

One week (kinda) down, seven more to go.

Well, it’s not completely over – I still have to go through the weekend (and a wedding!). But so far; so good. This week went by relatively well, but admittedly there were times where the idea of pouring a glass of red wine was extremely appealing. I didn’t go out for dinner or meet up with friends at night (when I am more likely to have a glass of something), so temptation was relatively low for me.

I do have a wedding that I am going to today and I know that there will be alcohol served. The idea of having a mimosa or glass of wine will be tempting, but I think I can handle it. I don’t feel the absolute need to drink in social situations, it’s more of a “well, it’s offered, so why not?”

But in the moments where I did feel like pulling out that glass of wine I thought about while I was desiring to have a glass. Was it because I absolutely needed the alcohol? Was it because I, like many Americans, associate it with relaxing after a particularly stressful day? Or was it because I couldn’t have it and so I wanted something that I couldn’t have?

I think a good chunk of it was because of self-denial, but I think I also like it as a concept to relax. So with that in mind, I tried to find other ways to unwind. I’ve been running, so I did push myself a little harder (endorphins are relaxing plus the accomplishment). I have house guests coming into town next weekend for Jai’s first birthday party, so tidying up the house also makes me feel more relaxed and accomplished.

Asking Ash for a foot rub, sitting on the couch and vegging out after Jai is in bed, cuddling, all were great ways to relax instead of having that glass of wine. I think that as each week goes by it will be even easier. It will still be harder when invited to events where drinking might be present, but I can easily say no and have a cup of water. Because in the end that’s cheaper.

Like I said in my first post¬†this week – this isn’t going to be as permanent omission like my other ones: this is just to help give my body a little less to process (and limited distraction). I may bring it back in at the end of the full eight weeks for a glass here and there of wine or something non-sugar based.

Now next week…that’s going to be the ultimate challenge. Giving up sugar. Pray for Ash.