Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Celebratory Thursday

Today was an unschool-homeschool day. We had planned to go to the apple orchard in the mountains but the forecast was hot and muggy so we postponed our trip to a day that's more Fall-like.

My kids, however, had anticipated a field trip all week. So I decided we'd make today one of those homeschool days that I intend to have but never do. A day of baking cookies and playing games. A day of real-life activities that teach, engage, and promote blissful togetherness.

We stayed in our pajamas. We baked 6 dozen of the best chocolate chip cookies ever. We did not brush our teeth until late in the day...which is gross, of course, yet a luxury by kid standards.

It was, in a word, fantastic. The kids loved breaking out of their pencil and paper routine. I loved being one of those cool hands-on moms. Cupcake loved getting in on all the big kid fun and eating unhealthy amounts of cookie dough.

He even celebrated the day by learning to undress himself, diaper included. I discovered him naked and full of glee. {I am quite sure this new-found independence is going to make my life increasingly difficult but all the more blogworthy.}

He's wearing nothing but cookie here.

I learned something today. It's something I already knew...but more in theory than in practice. Intentional spontaneity. These little ones are growing up before my eyes. Moments race by like wild horses. I can grab hold and enjoy the ride or stay safe and live with regret. By nature, I tend to do more of the latter.

Yes, math and writing are necessary parts of life...but a day off every now and then will not relegate children to a life of ignorance and squalor. They will not remember every day of multiplication and phonics rules; they will {hopefully} remember the occasional days of cookies and pajamas and monopoly.

When I reflect on my own childhood, the days of school and homework all run together in a monotonous flow of routine and drudgery. But I still remember the excitement I felt when my dad announced we were going to see a late movie together one Sunday evening...a school night. How delightfully scandalous.

I remember when he took all four of us out of school for an ENTIRE week to go to Washington, D.C. for a presidential inauguration and all the free festivities and attractions our nation's capital had to offer. I was a sophomore in high school at the time. {And I do remember being more than a little behind after missing a week of genetics in biology class...not that any of it matters now.}

I remember my very patient mother giving me free reign in the kitchen to make cookies and messes. I remember watching TV movies together while picnicking on a blanket in the carpeted living room. As it turns out, much of the best stuff I remember is the stuff of spontaneity and togetherness. Stuff that typically wasn't allowed. Stuff that was free or nearly free.

I want those little-big things for my own kids. Though it sounds simplistic and even cliche, I'm learning that little things make big impressions...and hopefully lasting memories.

My kids told me it was one of the best days ever. It was for me too.


I also learned that 3 sticks of butter in a batch of chocolate-chip cookies is worth every single calorie.


  1. Scooper.
    Great post. LOVE the photograph of all three children, I mean chefs, in the kitchen.
    Yes, the time does fly! My oldest is a junior in high school, (still home schooled -- his tenth year). I know your children will always remember days like this.
    Thanks for this post and the reminder to seize the real-life opportunities.

  2. Here's to chocolate chip cookies baked and consumed in pajamas! I think we could use a little of that around these here parts...

  3. What a wonderful day! Those are the best :) Love the purple chef's hat.

  4. Glad you enjoyed a wonderful time together making lots of lasting, treasured memories...that's what life is all about!

    Enjoy a great weekend!
    ~Michelle :)

  5. You have lucky kids. I think I said that before, but it is true.
    You are wise and creative and are teaching and learning together.

  6. What a great post! :)

  7. I need to learn to do more of this. Thanks for the reminder, the encouragement, and the inspiration!

  8. I love this reminder! What an amazing thing those kind of days are-I fondly remember those sort of things with my parents as a child. Thanks for sharing and for the encouragement to let go and be spontaneous a bit!

  9. We so enjoy days like this as well! I'm glad you all had such a fun day!

  10. What an encouragement! Letting go of the To do list sometimes and choosing instead to make memories... one of the great Mommy lessons. I need to learn that one better. Blessings!

    p.s. I was so excited to see Lily at Bible study at my church this week! We are in different classes, but it was so fun to see her during hospitality time. And I got to tell her that someone mentioned her product in my blog comments this week!

  11. Good for you. We did very little on Thursday too. It was a CC day but nothing else. My kids ran around singing Latin Second Declention(sp?) all day. I rested. It was magnificant. My body needed that day at home just as you needed that cookie day. I'm so proud of you.
    But that field trip awaits. Think the men would like to go on Friday??

  12. meant to tell you during our brief conversation yesterday, that i am loving your posts and am reading them every time you put one out...hug those little morsels for me...can't wait to see you this weekend and bring some little shoes to one cute little curly-headed cupcake...see ya'll soon

  13. Great post . . . great day . . . great cookies! (Thanks for sharing!) It may be only my opinion, but that first picture is truly a "moment-capturing" shot. You seemed to catch the unique "flavor" of each of these precious children at one time. Love it!

    Love you forever,

  14. Looks like so much fun! I love intentional spontaneity! I can remember the day my parents picked up my brother and me from school and drove us straight to the beach for a five day weekend. It was fabulous. I feel certain your kids will cherish these moments years later.

  15. love it. and O MY WORD WOMAN. 3 STICKS OF BUTTER? I bet those were the most delicious things you've ever eaten.

  16. Intentional spontaneity. Love it! What a fun, inspiring post--to err more on the fun and togetherness side of life!

  17. That looks like a fun day to be sure. Love the hat.

  18. Great post. LOVE the photograph of all three children, I mean chefs, in the kitchen.

    Work From Home


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