Today, let's chat for a minute or two about taking breaks. I am ALL about breaks. I mean, after 19 years I deserve a break, right?
Let's start with what a break is. One definition I found was "A pause in work or during an activity." The pause part kind of got me hung up for a while, and I had to really think about that wording. I was going to talk to you about BIG breaks, not just a pause. It also got me thinking that there are several kinds of breaks, and we homeschooling moms probably need them all at one time or another.
HOURLY BREAKS- You know, those times that tensions are high, tears are bound to happen at any moment (yours, not theirs), and mom just needs to cry uncle for a few minutes. Sometimes we just need to take a few minutes to stop and regroup. Through the years I have found those are the times I need to push back from the table, maybe grab a hand of a little one and pray. When we get frustrated, when things don't go the way the lesson plan shows, or when kids just are not behaving the way we think they should, the best break we can have is a quick time of prayer. Not only does it re-position our heart, but it is a good visual reminder to our kids that we are human and that we too need God and His guidance.
MONTHLY BREAKS- I think public school teacher conferences are ingeniously and strategically placed in between holidays! Have you ever noticed they seem to automatically have at least a day or two off each month for something? That is just smart planning. We all need time to rest, play, and recharge! Over the past few years we adopted a Sabbath Week Schooling Schedule in which we aim to school for 6 weeks and then take a week off. Sometimes I have to fudge the exact timing with holidays or a college child's plans, but the point is, we do take some time off every so often to rest and lesson plan. The kids need it and I need it.
YEARLY BREAKS- Sometimes we just need to celebrate and enjoy family. However that looks to you. Whether it is a stay-cation with popcorn and movie nights or a lavish vacation to a deserted island (please sign me up) your family needs you! They need one-on-one parenting time, love, and attention outside of tests and quizzes. Years ago we made the decision to save money each month towards a yearly family vacation. Best. Decision. Ever! Some years are quieter than others, but all have been opportunities to make memories and to rest from the pressures of school and everyday life.
No matter what kind of break you need today, rest assured they are all needed at some point. The opportunity to come back and start fresh, whether after a minute of prayer, a week to lesson plan, or a time to just relax and have some fun, is an opportunity worth taking!
Go ahead, give yourself a break!