Hello, Amazing August!

I am so excited that amazing August is almost here!  It’s my birthday month, and I will be celebrating my 50th!  Half a century of living and I know the 50s are going to be great!  Fifty brings a sense of peace in knowing yourself and what you have to offer the world, a grace that you extend to yourself and to others.  I can balance some different areas in my life probably better than at any other time in the past, because I have better boundaries so my own school, homeschooling, working part time, and having my own little business doesn’t seem as daunting (and my children are 10 and up!).  But most of all, I think the 50s as a decade are about having fun and really seizing all the moments!  I feel so fortunate to have my children be 18, 15, 10 – such fun ages as they grow up and go out into the world and I am so glad I am here to love them and help them, and  also to enjoy being with my husband and deepening our relationship of over 30 years while having a great time together.   So, yup, I am definitely celebrating my birthday week and this month!  Please go do something fun on my behalf in  your own life! ❤

The things we are celebrating:

August 6th- The Transfiguration of Jesus Christ

August 8th- My Birthday!

August 10- School starts!

August 15- The Dormition of St. Mary

Ideas for Celebration:

  • Making a  beautiful triptych to celebrate the life of St. Mary.  There are many wonderful ideas regarding this on the Internet.
  • We have about another month of tubing, swimming and water park availability to us, so we hope to take advantage!
  • Camping
  • Gazing at the stars
  • Horses!  The kids picked up polo during quarantine thanks to a friend who has a bunch of ponies, and we still have horse shows and maybe a hunter pace or something fun outside with the horses.
  • Walking in the mornings
  • Working out.  Move!  During quarantine, I have been using Beach Body (no affiliation at all, just happy to have it when I can’t go to the gym!)  Come work out with me!

The Domestic Life:

This a good time to take stock of needs for fall/winter in clothing, shoes, outside gear, school supplies, art supplies

I also think this a great time to go back to manners.  Children are often in an expansive place with summer weather and may need some help in remembering school behavior, work ethics and manners!   Rhythm is a huge help with that!  It’s a key word for this month and the structure of the rhythm of school does us all good!

Meal planning gets us through because I am too busy to have to spend a lot of time every day planning.  So, I like to plan 2-4 weeks of meals and shop in bulk!  Everyone has daily chores to help, laundry gets done and put away daily. When the margins of life are tighter and I would rather spend my free time having fun out with family and friends, then we all have to do our part each day!

Homeschooling:

We are jumping into fifth grade (for my third time!).  I am looking forward to it, and pretty much decided to start with Ancient Civilizations because that’s pretty open and go for me since I have done it before.  Our fifth grader also has a two day a week outdoor program, and I will be working those days and seeing a few private patients on some of the other days.

Our tenth grader is in an outside program, so mainly I am helping with homework there!

Our high school graduate will be starting online and at home, and then hopefully be moving into her university as COVID cases drop.

I have school work to do as well, so we will all have a time to do our homework! 🙂

Self-Care:

So, my main homework days for my own school are Monday- Thursday. I now take Friday nights and Saturdays for RELAXING.  This is a switch for me, but one thing I realized during quarantine was how little I relaxed and just hung out and puttered around and I am aiming to change that! Sundays are church days and typically busy (although we are still virtual here) getting ready for Monday and school.

My other huge piece of self care is  my supplements, eating right, and exercising daily!

I want to hear what you have learned during quarantine, how August is shaping up for you, how is school looking?  If anyone needs help with homeschool planning or planning for family life, please email me at admin@theparentingpassageway.  My rates for a half hour phone call are super reasonable and I have helped lots of moms this month!  I also answer fast questions via email for free, and always give my single moms free help.

Lots of love,
carrie

Developmental Homeschooling

We are in a unique position as parents and as homeschooling parents in that we get to work with the development of the unique child in front of us daily. It’s a large task to be able to see a larger picture of development, and the very unique, personal development of the child in front of us and to be able to weave this into the fabric of family life.

After many years of parenting and homeschooling, I have a few suggestions when you start to lose the forest for the trees.  The first one is to look at rhythm.  Rhythm is very important in sustaining family life in a healthy way and in sustaining development in a healthy way.  A recent example in my own life is that our  ten year old had been quite cranky as of late, and I realized today how much his behavior improved when his audio books were cut off.  His mood improved dramatically, and he become engaged and involved in other things.  This is an example of something you think you know after raising a certain number of children, but we still have to stop and think. Are we keeping consistent rising and bed times and rest times?  Are we having healthy meals?  Are we all getting outside enough and moving enough?  Are we connecting? Am I gently leading and guiding in a way that is appropriate for the child’s age?  Rhythm provides that ebb and flow of work and play, rest and activity, caring for ourselves and caring for others that helps us be strong and flexible for the every day life we face.

My second suggestion is to truly understand human development.  If you do, you will understand the stages that are fairly typical and be able to keep your ho hum attitude.   You will know there are profound changes generally around the three year mark, the 6/7 mark, at 9 years, 12 years, and at ages 15/16.  We also know some ages are louder, more aggressive, brasher like age four and age eight, and some ages can be more inward and anxious like at age nine. This is where I started this blog, with the concept of childhood development and how that fits into parenting and homeschooling, and ten years later I am more convinced of its importance than even when I was starting out.

Lastly, the third suggestion is that love and connection is what makes the family go round.  Having times of rest, play, ordinary rituals, sharing a spiritual life and purpose together all make things ready to grow and bloom.

Many blessings and love,

Carrie

The Revolution of July

For those of you who have been reading for the past ten plus years,  you know July sometimes was not my favorite month.  The heat of July can be oppressive here in the Deep South, the air can feel still, time can seem to stand still when you have small children with endless days of trying to beat the heat.  I even wrote posts about July Doldrums and More July Doldrums. Eventually June and July  turned into my months to do homeschooling consultations with to parents all over the United States so that cheered this ambivert up considerably! (Jubuliant July!)  I no longer dread July!

This time of #covid and history-making change has made me think this July is going to be revolutionary.  I hope it doesn’t retreat into status quo, stillness, and a dead end. We must not give up the fight  for peace, for unity, for justice, for change within ourselves and our communities.  We must embrace these times we are living in and help move things forward for the better.

We can use social media to amplify voices, we can write to our local representatives, donate, we can speak up to the people we know even if it’s hard, and  we can prepare to vote and get involved.  The place to begin a revolutionary change lies within ourselves.  What are our hearts telling us we should be doing in this month?  Our inner work matters because now more than ever, our homes and families must stand for safety and community and love. How can become more generous, more loving, more kind, more aware, more longing for justice?  How can we become people of reconciliation in our communities and in the world?  We are being called to important work in this day and time; let us not neglect what our calling  and part may be, however small.  What sparks of peace are you lighting in your own family and community?  How are we helping the very least amongst us?

On a different note, July in the ordinary time of the homeschooling family is also a month to plan, plan, and plan for homeschooling.  To that end,  veteran homeschooler Amanda Evans and I are planning a FREE Zoom call for grades 5/6 THIS SUNDAY  July 5 EST 7-8:30 and Tuesday, July  7 from 7-8:30 for grades 7/8/9.  Please email coastalwaldorf@gmail.com in order to register.

Hold fast to the true, the right, the real, the love, the promise of hope.

Blessings in hope,

Carrie

 

June

Normally I love June – beaches, lakes, and pools.  Puffy and fluffly clouds sitting on blue skies. Glowing fireflies, campfires, and friends.  June is a wonderful month.

This year, I have loved being outside in June, but I don’t feel joyful.  There is so much work to do regarding anti-racism, and we absolutely, must must must as parents be a part of this work if you aren’t already.  So, while I have a list of some typical things that we do this month, I want to encourage you this month to

#vote- this may have already happened in your state, but primaries in my state are being held today.

#educateyourself – 

For Homeschoolers (or any other parent wanting to add to their child’s learning): Back Post tracing Africa through the curriculum: This is how I extended Africa through every grade in the curriculum (from 2017, so not up to date for recent events, but still good . Hope to write an updated post soon.) Don’t forget I also have lists like this for Indigenous Studies and for Latin American Studies. All on this blog.

Our African American literature block for high schoolers: Tenth Grade Literature. One of our biggest reads for high school, which we read in both 9th grade and then again in 12th grade was “Their Eyes Were Watching God.”  Some of our other favorites for middle school/high school:

Poetry: 

  • “Fundamentalism” – Naomi Shihab Nye
  • “Still I Rise” -Maya Angelou
  • “We Real Cool” – Gwendolyn Brooks
  • “Eventide” – Gwendolyn Brooks
  • “Georgia Dusk” – Jean Toomer
  • “Dream Deferred” -Langston Hughes
  • “Haiku” – Sonia Sanchez
  • Music Lyrics as Poetry: “Get It Together” by India Arie and “The Evil That Men Do” by Queen Latifah; “The Rose That Grew From Concrete” by Tupac Shakur
  • “Ego Tripping” -Nikki Giovanni
  • “American Hero” – Essex Hemphill
  • “To Some Supposed Brothers” -Essex Hemphill

Literature:   

  • “Rootedness: The Ancestor as Foundation” – Toni Morrison (essay)
  • “The Sky Is Grey” -Ernest Gaines (short story)
  • “The Burden of Race” – Arthur Ashe (nonfiction excerpt)

Nonfiction, tied into American Government

  • “Just Mercy” – Bryan Stephenson

Assigned Reading between 10th and 11th Grades:

  • “Beloved” – Toni Morrison
  • “Invisible Man”  –  Ralph Ellison (probably will end up doing together as first book in fall)
  • “Dear Martin” – Nic Stone
  • “All American Boys” – Jason Reynolds
  • “Piecing Me Together” – Watson

Also, if you look at the back posts for seventh and eighth grade, you can see how I personally traced African American history in our country.  There are so many posts I can’t link them all here.

Book List:

  • So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
  • White Fragility:  Why It’s So Hard for White People To Talk about Racism by Robin DiAngelo
  • The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
  • Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
  • The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  • Stamped  both the kid and adult version and How To Be An Anti-Racist by Ibram Kendi
  • I’m Still Here by Austin Channing
  • The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

#talktoyourkids – start early and often.  I think this can be a lot harder if you live in an area with little diversity.  We have  a very multicultural group of friends, neighborhood, and city, so I personally found these conversations easy to initiate, but I know that isn’t the case for everyone.  Start simple.  If you have a school aged child and you have never addressed these issues, I think you can always start with the idea that we stand up for what is right, we stand up for people who are being “picked on” – something every child can identify with, and then move into how sometimes people are not liked or hated just because of the color of their skin, and then you can talk further about where we are here and now and then how we got here and why it is so important to stand up for what is right.  I don’t know if that helps.  Just an idea.

#donate – Black Mamas Matter Alliance, 

What we actually will be celebrating this month:

14- Flag Day

20 – Summer Solstice

21- Father’s Day

24 – The Nativity of St. John the Baptist/ St. John’s Tide (see this back post for festival help!)

 

How to Celebrate:

  • I am enjoying decluttering many homeschool books.
  • Blueberry Picking
  • Kayaking, boating, going to the lake
  • Enjoying time on the farm with horses; my big kids picked up polo through a friend that has a bunch of polo ponies at her house so they have been going there to play
  • Being together – game nights; movie nights with our older teens
  • Slip and slide for our rising fifth grader
  • No pool this summer due to #covid19

The teaching fun:

  • Last year, I was teaching a group of teachers at a local Waldorf homeschooling enrichment program this month.  That was fun!  There is a lot of uncertainty about school in the fall, so I will be waiting to see what is needed!
  • I finished my pelvic floor health certification and launched a business!  Flourish Pelvic PT, Lactation, and Wellness LLC on FB and @flourishwellnesspt on IG.
  • And, I have homeschool planning to do for fifth grade.  Our senior graduated and will be off to out of state university in the fall, and our tenth grader is at our local hybrid high school that runs four days a week.   I have been posting about homeschool planning on FB and IG, so go on over and check out all the photos and ideas there!

Inner Work:

  • Prayer and lots of it!
  • Exercising daily and walking over 10,000 steps daily because that helps focus my mind.

I would love to hear what you are up to and how you are coping during these sad and often overwhelming times.

I’ve Got This Parenting Thing Down!

I don’t think anyone in the history of mankind has ever said this.

From being a parent of a colicky baby up all day and all night screaming…

To being a parent of the toddler who is running around the house naked, crayon in hand from cheerfully writing on the walls, exiting the bathroom from stuffing a shirt down the toilet…

To being the parent of an  elementary-aged child who is convinced  that all their friends are “mean” or that they are “not smart” or “everyone is better at things than I am”

To being  the parent of a pre-teen who is bored and more bored

To being the parent of a teenager who has slammed their door for the hundreth time and told you how much they hate life …

No parent has probably  ever said they had it together! (If you do have it all together, awesome! But most of us don’t!)

I don’t know about you, but my children are awesome, and they also have all the feelings, all the dreams, all the ideas.  Somehow we have been led to believe all the “bigness” is somehow wrong – instead it should all be figured out in little checked off boxes. I don’t find parenting to be like that.

I think we should talk about being “normal”  in family life more often.  Being “normal” doesn’t mean the “perfect” children were everything goes absolutely right!  It isn’t us, as parents, bending over backward to create a perfect world for them!  So what is it then?

It is showing them how to be calm in the face of chaos, courageous in the face of adversity, and to see humor in the things life throws at us.

It is showing them that life is getting back up again and again, and it’s pulling ourselves together after we have fallen apart.

It is standing together hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder and being ready for whatever needs to be done to get ahead, because a family is the very first team your child will ever play on!

It is teaching our children to stand up for what is absolutely right and true, and to respect the dignity of all human beings.

It is living life in the most vibrant, beautiful, and sometimes messiest way possible!

So, give yourself a hug.  None of us have this figured out; we all have different experiences that are tragic, beautiful, funny, absurd, thoughtful, meaningful, shallow, serene in parenting and family life.  Life is about that entire spectrum of being human!

Go and love it and own it.  That’s how you get this parenting thing down!

Lots of love,
carrie

Beautiful Month of May

It’s the beautiful month of May out there and despite #covid19 and #socialdistancing (#shelterinplace has been lifted in my state with the exception of the medically fragile), the weather is gorgeous, the sunshine is bright, temperatures are in the 60’s-70’s (Fahrenheit), and we are verging on being ready to swim.  It will be very sad for us if the pools don’t open this summer, but hopeful the large lake near us will still be an option!

We are celebrating this month:

Eastertide

May 1- May Day

May 10 – U.S. Mother’s Day

May 14 – High School Graduation for our oldest!  Homeschooling is done!

May 18, 19, 20 – Rogation Days

May 21- The Feast of Ascension

May 25 – U.S. Memorial Day

May 31 – The Feast of Pentecost – you can see some beautiful cross-cultural images for inspiration

Ways to Celebrate:

These are a few of my favorite things for small children:

  • Hiking on The Feast of Ascension, watching clouds
  • Making Pentecost crafts
  • Gathering for May Day and dancing around a May Pole!
  • Making crafts for Memorial Day, this year decorating our own front porch and walking in the neighborhood since I doubt there will be parades of any kind!
  • Pedal toys – trikes and bikes!

These are a few of my favorite things for grades-aged children:

  • Seting up playing in the water and sand – we ordered a slip n slide for the backyard and are awaiting its arrival and a pool for our dogs
  • Observing all the dragonflies, bees, and butterflies
  • Calming rituals for rest times and the end of the day.  I strongly believe that children ages 8-13 still need earlier bedtimes and I work very hard to make that happen. Calming rituals and rhythm are soothing for sleep!

These are a few of my favorite things for teens:

  • Spring cleaning and spring decorating of the home, gardening tasks
  • Spring cooking, making special treats for The Feast of Ascension and Memorial Day
  • Planning surprise May Day baskets for neighbors, and doing things to serve others.
  • Picnics at the lake or park with #socialdistancing
  • Later night walks in the warm air – great time to talk after the smaller children have gone to bed

These are a few of my favorite things for myself:

  • Celebrating our family with family meetings and family game night.
  • Celebrating our marriage with a night out on our anniversary – this year it might just be a drive together to celebrate our 28 years!
  • Vigorously moving 5 to 6 days a week, whether that is through yoga, hiking, at the gym, or whatever I choose.
  • Drinking lots of water and herbal teas.
  • Daily Compline from The Book of Common Prayer
  • I made notes for who I am praying for in my phone with One Note and it has helped me immensely to stay on track and not forget!

These are a few of my favorite things for homeschool planning:

I am starting to work on Botany as our first block for fifth grade in the fall!  Stay tuned, as I may put it out to be able to be purchased when I am done since it’s my third time going through fifth grade.

I would love to hear what you all are up to!

Many blessings and deep peace to you, stay safe,

Carrie

Things I Am Keeping From Quarantine

We are still here in #shelterinplace. My state has been lifted  for certain businesses with regulations (except for the medically compromised who are supposed to #shelterinplace until June 12), but we are still choosing to be home, and #socialdistancing is still in place.  So, I guess our life isn’t changing too much right now.

Interestingly, it  really didn’t change a ton from before #shelterinplace.  We  were used to being home all together when my spouse wasn’t traveling, we were used to all the kids schooling here for the most part, and we were all used to taking care of the house and cooking all the meals because we really didn’t go out to eat a lot as a family (expensive for 5 people, right?) with all of us being home.  We did homeschool before, although our high schoolers were in outside classes that moved to online,  so with this the major changes were that we had less places to go, and my spouse stopped traveling for awhile.

The hardest part was not being able to see family and friends, and also the lines of school and work not having really set times as well as we normally do, especially in the beginning. It all just kind of blended in together, but putting in school and work limits are important for sanity and to not feel glued to the computer all the time.

However, what I did notice that was positive:  since there were less places to be we exercised more, we walked daily, we did more puzzles and things like that together, we baked more (good thing we offset it with exercise), and I actually de-compressed after about six weeks and watched three nights of movies in a row (unheard of) and took a few naps, which I don’t normally do!  We all also read a lot, which we normally did, but now I don’t feel like we were trying to squish the reading in amongst other things. I think we were also more intentional with our home spiritual life, since we were used to being at a place of worship each week and couldn’t go.

So, the things I want to keep from quarantine life:

  1.  Less places to run around to! I know we will be driving to outside classes again in the fall assuming everything opens up completely, but I hope to really keep all the automated deliveries of groceries and household items, to call and/or use telehealth for various medical things, to call and have shipped things like the supplements I take or contact lenses or whatever.  This will help  limit the places I go.
  2. To continue walking daily and to keep exercising at home.  I love the gym and will be back there, but I hope that will be on top of a great home routine!
  3. To put limits on the hours I work (self-employed) so I can have a good balance.
  4. To make Friday nights a crockpot  or grill dinner night and time for our family to gather – kids’ friends welcome, of course.
  5. To make Saturday a day to spend out in nature.  We usually do this, but just to keep it on my radar.  We are lucky to have a yard and our neighborhood connects to trails that we have been able to use  daily during this.
  6. To really keep connecting with the people that I have had Zoom calls with and friends that I have kept close contact with during this time.  Their checking in made a world of difference.
  7. To not put off taking vacations – this has proved we don’t know what will come, so take the vacation!   We had a vacation planned for the first time in two years when this happened, but I hope we get to go somewhere again!
  8. My newfound spiritual traditions – for my religion, using The Book of Common Prayer daily, which in the past I have gone through great spurts of diligence and not, and reading our sacred texts.

What will YOU be keeping from #shelterinplace? What are you excited to get back to?

Blessings and love, stay healthy,
Carrie

11 Lessons From the Midst of A Pandemic

I have been thinking a lot about -“what’s the lesson in all of this? (is there a lesson? Does there always need to be a lesson?)  What will the outcome be in all of this?”  as people talk about what might come out of living in pandemic conditions – will it lead to revolutionary changes in business travel, healthcare, education, the ability for rural areas in the United States to be able to access the Internet better, etc?  Will it cause people to re-evaluate their lifestyles, their level of consuming, their level of using home as a launching pad to other areas of their life – or will they just rush back to how it was before?  And, since a pandemic typically lasts 12-18 months with fewer number of cases and then spikes, what can we do  to make life seamless as things may teeter between open and closed several more times?

I am not sure of any of those answers at this point.  Some people have the privilege to “re-invent” their lives or lifestyles, and some people don’t.  That’s the unfortunate reality.  But, I think to a certain extent I hope we all come away with ideas that could at least enhance our lives wherever we are.  Here are a few ideas-

  1.  Live below our means as much as possible and have savings so when things happen and work is disrupted, we have cushion and the ability to pivot if we need to.
  2. Food storage is a real necessity, and it is important to  build it up slowly and over time.  Just adding one or two extra things into your shopping cart each time you shop can be an easy way to build up stores and not cause too much financial stress or descend into hoarding.
  3. Automate the high demand items.  I automate (have delivered) panty and cleaning items, toilet paper, etc.
  4. Learn how to garden and can food.  Nearly everyone can have some containers if you can’t plant in the ground or grow sprouts and microgreens in the kitchen
  5. Get to know your farmers that are in your area and buy direct from them.   This really saved us during this.  Drive through pick up of an order placed through the Internet!
  6.  Get outside and get in physical shape.  The sunshine and Vitamin D and higher levels of fitness help everyone’s stress levels and immune functioning.  Use all the free workouts available through You Tube.
  7. Shore up your immune system in whatever way that looks like for you.  Most of what I have been reading suggests at least Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Zinc.  Read up on what could help you during times of illness for support as well.
  8. If you are ready, think about your lifesyle.  If you lived more simply, could you work less?  Can you work from home?  Could you have something that makes you money while you sleep?  This book is an oldie but a goodie: “Your Money Or Your Life”  available on Kindle or Audible, updated 2018 –  https://www.amazon.com/Your-Money-Life-Transforming-Relationship-ebook/dp/B0052MD8VO/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_
  9. Lifestyle can extend to school.  I don’t think everyone should homeschool, but I do hope that people can see from this pandemic experience that  learning can be more broad than just going to a school building (and that some families don’t have the tools they need to be successful at home and we need better solutions for that as a society). I would love to see more equity in school funding and more diversity toward if some children do better in a smaller setting.
  10. Understanding that family and our children are the most precious things and that time really isn’t replacable.  The simple things like walks, board games, cooking together are all so valuable.  I hope people come away from this remembering how to be together again – how to eat dinner all together again, how to just be together.
  11. The outpouring of help i have seen toward others needing food, needing help, checking in on one another and encouraging one another, the connection of friends old and new through technology and amazing and interesting  socially distant but creative ways in neighborhoods has been unparalled.  I hope that continues.

Blessings,
Carrie

Eastertide Joy In The Home

Despite #shelteringinplace with #covid19, life continues on.  Where we live in the Deep South, spring is here!  Flowers are blooming, everything is green and beautiful, people are starting their vegetable gardens.  It gives one hope just to look out and see the sun shining and the greenery!

I find this time of year, the 50 days between Easter and Pentecost, to be one of my favorite times of year.  It is hopeful and encouraging and feels like new beginnings.  Being home has provided time and space for thought, and that has been helpful.  It is a great time for new commitments, new ideas and thoughts, and for really discerning the essential.

If you are looking for joyous outward ways to celebrate Eastertide, here are some of my ideas rounded up, great for life with children:  50 Ways to Celebrate Eastertide.  We usually celebrate this by hiking a lot and even camping during Eastertide, which won’t be happening this year. We have all been exercising inside daily and walking, which has helped stave off some feelings of confinement.  We are fortunate as I know some countries you need an essential worker’s pass to be out of the house and an assigned shopping day.

Schoolwork is online for our  high school senior for her outside classes; our freshman is in a four day a week program that went smoothly to completely live online classes, and our little fourth grader is still homeschooling with me.  We started a writing/grammar block, and I will be posting some pictures on The Parenting Passageway’s Facebook page and Instagram account so you can follow along!

Other than that, work continues online for my husband and we are so very grateful,  my school begins again on April 22nd online, and hopefully I will be able to see some patients via telehealth in May.  We have been busy cooking and baking, growing microgreens in the kitchen, doing puzzles, playing board and card games, studying,  painting, reading, taking walks, and checking on our horses (considered an essential activity because we own them and have to provide food).  There have been  little neighborhood activities like a “bear hunt” for the smaller children to find on walks, drives for food for our local food bank and for healthcare workers to provide meals at the hospital, a cute Easter bunny who went around to houses so children could have a visit from 10 feet away, and I hear a Kona ice truck will swing through here in the next few weeks.  Lots to be thankful for!

This Eastertide may be like no other, the future may be uncertain for many of us economically and otherwise, but I am finding the gratitude in this time before the world opens up again.

A little note from my corner of the world,

Carrie

 

 

 

New Normal

I am not sure I have “embraced” this new normal yet.  Have you?  How is the juggling going of school and working going?  There are times this new normal can feel overwhelming and anxiety-provoking.  There are times this new normal feels okay and comforting with my family and outside in my yard (and yes, I feel blessed to have a yard right now).  There are times this new normal is aggravating.  There are times this new normal feels quiet and peaceful.  All the feels!

I have seen a lot of posts asking  what one will “keep” out of this new normal.

I hope the increased empathy and kindness I have seen people give to each other in this time will stay.  I hope the outpouring of  love I have seen for all the teachers, first responders, medical personnel, environmental service workers, grocery store workers, military, farmers, and small business owner stays.

I hope the idea that being with your family (again, I understand not everyone has a loving family situation) can be better than so many of the outside activities that cause you to lose dinner together every night.  That is is okay to be home all together.

I hope the neighborliness of doing things to entertain the children stays (in my neighborhood we have had everything from talent shows on Zoom to collecting money for food for our local hospital to putting bears in the windows for a bear hunt for children).

On a materialistic note, I hope the uptick in being able to order and pick up, or the ability to use telehealth or attend religious services with on line streaming or  any of those things that brings more accessiblity also stays.  On line technology has felt increasingly important to me during this Holy Week in my religion.

So, tell me, is there anything lovely you will keep from this and be your new normal?

Blessings,
Carrie