A Long Summer

We have been having the most beautiful fall weather here in Ohio - which feels way more like summer weather. 

It's November and I wore a t-shirt and flip flops yesterday and went for a bike ride with Sammy.  (Who is 15 and I know doesn't have many of his favorite bike rides left.)

On my weekends I've been working in the garden with the help of my kids someday and others, just me.  Since my classroom is in the basement of our school and I have just one window that looks out into a basement stairwell I try to soak up all the sunlight I can every day.  

Work-I love it!  It's heavenly.  Sometimes yes there are days when things don't go as planned but there is nothing I don't love about my job and if there has been I have found a solution.  (For instance hanging kids art work is so time consuming but I now have more cork strips and a rechargeable glue gun for cement block walls and both make the job enjoyable instead of frustrating and never ending. 

Halloween was wonderful- Patrick went with a friend and Janey and I just slowly walked the neighborhood.  I can get nostalgic about all the years with the older kids at home but then I realize how lucky I am to still get to see the whole day through the younger kids eyes.

One thing I do know when I look back on holidays and life in general is that simple is always always better.  It doesn't mean boring or unenjoyable in fact in means just the opposite.  It means more excitement and appreciation because there is no burnout, exhaustion, unrealistic expectations, and never ending materialism - for parent, child and family.  I have never regretted dialing a holiday, a weekend, a vacation back.  Back to simplicity- back to less decoration, less planning, simpler food, gift giving and outside commitments.  The kids want it and need it- even if the pressure of our culture sells them (and us) the opposite every day. 

Yesterday I sat down and took a plain sheet of paper and planned how I want the next two months to look for me.  For us.  And now I feel more at peace instead of stressed or overwhelmed.  Because it's all as simple as heck with the emphasis on what I decide, not the craziness of outside sources that tell us every day how holidays should look. 

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