SUN Unity, the whole family was together at the beach if felt good.
MON Proactivity is knowing what I want. (Goal Setting)
TUE Teamwork is finding how to work smarter in a group.
WED Connection, shareing my passion with the world and accepting others gifts.
THR Purpose know what I can do, what is most importat, where I stand.
FRI Creativity is thinking of new ways to do better.
Social Health: (Helping Kids) Karate Classes = 5 Scouts Meetings Zoo = 3 Ocean = 2 Park = 1.
Going well, it motivates me to get things cleaned up that I may have friends over again. Whales just passed by our karate class, I don’t know why that’s cool, but I like it.
Physical Health: (Exercise) Watching my food in a medium way, still not fully back to exercise, but doing a lot of outings and yard work so it is all I can do for now. When I come back it will be Abs and Total Body. Taking a while to come back, but still teaching martial arts and that stuff.
Mental Health: (Writing) I like the clarity from writing, I feel like I need it to be productive at this time in my life.
Saturday: My dad left on a repair trip, my husband took me out for tacos for our anniversary, I did some garden work. I was able to clear up the square foot garden, the kids planted flower seeds, I put down edging and a pathway layout.
Sunday: Last karate at home this week gardening and black sand beach. Started moving the wall out to the front behind the shrubs, I don’t know how much work that is going to take… but I hope the project doesn’t lag behind the supplies too much I don’t want to lose momentum until the front garden is ready. The hedges we planted last year mostly rooted, yet are not large, the mulch works well, in general, the path laid down by last year made this year possible, I want to move the wall forward to give the garden more room, make it more stable, the mulch I made last year works well, so after putting the wall up I will much next to it, and make a DIY bamboo planter behind to spread the bamboo out…
Monday: Last week my husband finished work forms for a new job, while my daughter did her work alone for the first time, this week my husband has started work in this state for the first time. Goal setting: retouch hair Sat 10AM, fix the leak in the small pond Sat 8AM, get school more organized Monday, rebait for bugs in the house Mon 7PM, move the soil to garden area Sat 11AM, paint for fun after lunch, start book project about time management 6-7AM, Rimworld at night 1 hour 7-8. (Future: Pebble paths, patio screen, plug mushrooms, paths/walls/ponds). Purchased some watches to help stay on time, hopefully. My kids met the neighbors today it was nice, we haven’t been as social due to the pandemic, they like our chickens which is cool, the neighbor beyond the neighbor actually pets the chickens, which is so sweet.
Tuesday: Last week we covered the periodic table of elements and nomenclature as well, this week we finished out Social Emotional Learning class, had a cake for that, and did quite a bit of Health covering topics like the respiratory system, the skin, addiction, assertive communication, abuse, ending the cycle of abuse. We went outside as well, it’s been easier to watch both kids outside so it is nice to increase the time we spend outside closer to what it used to be.
Wednesday: Last week we went to the zoo and did martial arts and painting and dancing it was nice, this week we went to the beach and did karate, then drama, then lunch, then swimming, it’s harder than the zoo, but I like it better, whales passed by and that was really cool. I started learning a little Hebrew from a student, it’s always nice to learn a new alphabet I like symbols.
Thursday: Last week new chemistry kit came in and it felt really good. Started Mario is Missing for Social Science. This week we did a lot of Social Science, we hit the quota of 2.5% then did another 11% of the course. It’s an easy class, but we do slow down like to watch biographies of Sacagawea, ext. My daughter took class notes for Agriculture and Social Science today, not a ton of notes, but it was the first time, so that was cool. We ran a bunch of errands, I don’t love it, but at least we did the gas, mail, trash, on one day instead of breaking up a ton of days.
Friday: Last week made magnet labels for a new time schedule to try to keep track of the day better got some fountain stuff that kicked off a reno of the front garden. This week I worked for two days on the wall, but didn’t have time the other days so I’m hoping I can finish that wall this weekend, because I can’t move the bamboo until I move the rocks, I can finish the fountain until I move the bamboo… so step A, I hope I can get done this weekend, or at least step A 1.0…
Finish the front garden!
> Butterfly Garden Project: Looking at the front garden plan trying to break down steps, 1. building the wall by the hedges to move the rock pile in the way of the bamboo as well as to define the front area. 2. planting the bamboo behind the rock wall 3. defining the area for the bamboo to grow into. 3. weeding the garden beds/bamboo bed. 4. putting down weed cloth and securing it in the paths. 5. gathering and placing stone in the pathway. 6. planning a near by place for compost. 7. trench for electrical. 8. placing fountain pot. 9. Fill and assemble fountain. 10. Adjusting fountain possible water plants… find a place to return outdoor toys…
> Front Garden: Level slightly with cuttings, mulch a path on side of wall to help hedges grow in, perhaps sun flowers and watermelon?
OTHER GOALS: Fix the small pond – Get more organized – Live life to the fullest
“There is magic in sincere forgiveness, the magic to heal.”
– Terry Goodkind
VALUES REFLECTION JOURNAL:
SAT Faith is believeing it’s worth it to try. (Mental/Priorities)
I used to think this was just religion, but over time I learned some of the religious have faith and others don’t, and that you have faith in people around you (or not), so for me it really means “trust”. Do I trust this person to take my car? Anyone can possible crash it, but do I think this person probably wouldn’t?Perhaps a car is serious, but how much more so life and how much a deeper a question when you ask yourself if you can trust, youself?🎵
SUN Unity being part of a family deciding how to make that work, what is right. (Mental/Social/Boudaries) Our group self quarentined this week half sick, a quarter recovering, a quarter not sick. It’s good, I just wished people had called off before I baked two cakes, but at least I was able to do a home cut and color on my hair.
MON Proactivity is knowing what I want. (Mental/Physical/Goal Setting)
I want to retouch my hair cut, fix the leak in the small pond, get school more organized, rebait for bugs in the house, move the soil we already bought into place, build cement peble paths, fix the patio screen, paint for fun, rimworld for fun, write a few books, plug mushrooms, design a new produce area… build a bigger koi pond…
TUE Teamwork is finding how to work smarter in a group. (Social/Mindfulness)
WED Connection is shareing my passion with the world and accepting others gifts. (Social/Balance)
THR Purpose know what I can do, what is most importat, where I stand. (Social/Awareness)
FRI Creativity is thinking of new ways to do things better. (Mental/Flexibility)
Social Health: Teaching Karate classes this year: 3.
Things have never gone so well, it’s kind of scary that they are going so well because that gives me somewhere to fall from. I guess fear means you have something to lose. This Sunday trying dancing/music and then beach day. Planning on baking another cake prior. Sunday got canceled so we ate a lot of cake, but Wednesday we picked up again.
Physical Health: Still working on losing some extra fat/weight but no hurry. Getting a bit faster and stronger again, have more energy than before.
Mental Health: I still kind of have brain fog on a typical day, but Monday I was full of remembering what I want to do, I think people teasing me that I don’t finish what I start makes me not want to tell anyone what I am trying to do, not even myself. I guess writing is more important right now that my mind stays in kind of a fog.
Saturday: In the morning I was tired of cleaning but still wanted to clean the closet to get through. I knew I had a sore throat, so I was always unsure how much I was going to get done… I got a nice nap, very rare for me, I woke up a lot because it was hard to breathe in certain positions, but then I hit the right position and actually fell asleep a bit. I fell into my room cleaning routine:
CLEANING – (Bedroom) I strip the beds to wash, move the beds on end, clean baseboard/floor/wall under bed with vinegar, vacuum and steam mop main floor, spray bottom of the mattress with anti-fungal and place facing sun to dry, move furniture away from window, clean window/wall near window with vinegar, put back furniture, start washing sheets/blankets… so at that point things are much cleaner, yet everything kind of still looks the same, but it gets rid of a funky smell and mold well.
I should organize the stuff on the shelves and the rest of the closet, but I’m really not sure if I will or not. (<I did do that a take I of organizing 4 buckets into Kwanzaa decor, New Years Decor, bonsai supplies, and a bag of beach stuff. It wasn’t as cool as the school transformation, but it was something better.)
ORGANIZATION – It is going better when putting away things after going out since I know where they go, some places like the patio are still a hot mess, some categories like gardening are still a mess too, but the craft stuff/toys/school stuff/clothes are a lot better so that does make it less overwhelming.
CLOTHES – Let go of some too small stuff, my son is the smallest in our circles so no one wants it.
BOOKS – Having one return bucket is working out well, there is the shelf and then there is the return.
PAPERS – It’s okay right now, no energy to finish going through old files this week.
TIME – It is going well taking the kids out more, sometimes I don’t like packing, but I like being there and don’t hate unpacking.
8:30 Breakfast/Language 9 Bus/Letter if the Day/Song Time/Day of Week
9:30 Stoic Quote/EQ-Calendar/Writing Letter of the Day/Feelings Pond/Poem
11 Music/Exercise Time 12 Lunch 1 Outside Time 2 Lesson 3 Blocks/Story Time
After my nap I felt a lot better, but I was debating if I have to cancel the playdate for tomorrow, when you are negative for COVID is it a 5 day waiting peroid? a 10 day? or none? That’s something I’m not quite sure of in our new social order.
Sunday: Last week the beach, this week it didn’t work out, but it’s still been going very well compared to the last two years, so just be grateful for how well it has gone overall and painting and playing music and dancing and karate with my own kids and getting a hair cut.
Monday: Last week took the kids on a road trip, this week we did English and Spanish, my husband finished work forms for a new job, my daughter did her work alone which was really cool, yet then she lost it and threw fits and cried the rest of the day. Before dinner she did legos and after that, she danced on Just Dance World Dance Floor. Perhaps it was a failure in her Alphastim medicine?
Tuesday: Last week I consolidated common themes into articles, this week I felt off and behind in cleaning, I realized we may not finish chemistry this semester, but still want to go through it bit by bit, we covered the periodic table of elements today and electron charges it went really well yet it takes awhile, we covered nomenclature as well.
Wednesday: Last week we had a nice art workshop day at the park, this time we went to the zoo and did martial arts and painting and dancing it was nice.
Thursday: Last week I realized my ideal life is 1/5 helping kids, 1/5 exercise, 1/5 martial arts,1/5 writing, 1/5 music, and art and I got sick, this week a new chemistry kit came in and it felt really good. Started Mario is Missing for Social Science.
Friday: Last week reading Hamlet with my daughter. This week Theatre was moved to Monday freeing time Friday for robotics and more computer science. We didn’t do robotics at all, we did fine for math and coding, but did an hour of science experiments then outside for two and a half hours so in the end missed robotics… I made magnet labels for a new time schedule to try to keep track of the day better, we did 8AM Breakfast, 8:30 Song/Bus Time, 9:00 EQ Journal, 9:30 Habit Check In, which went really well my daughter and husband seemed to take it to heart, my son I just explained it but not sure he understood. Looking to buy a nicer $600 greenhouse… but for now got some fountain stuff to do a new water feature with a nice pot I already have. I think I have to push back the bamboo a bit or just spread it out to move the fountain where the natural view from the bench is. Eventually I think the bamboo will be nice and then I will put blueberries near it too and then path, bamboo, blueberries, path… someday. The week was tiring, yet improvements happened, it wasn’t perfect at all, but there were some good moments including my largest martial arts class so far, six students.
Keep exercising – keep engaging in an adventurous life – Keep teaching Karate.
OTHER GOALS: Fix the small pond – Get more organized
The past two weeks feel more real than the past two years. Last week I remember I didn’t enter a day in my journal and three days later I could barely recall it at all… During the pandemic a lot of my passion projects were destroyed, cancelled or just slowly died, this year they are coming to life again like spring blooming through a winter snow. It’s kind of scary to see good things and have fun, scary it may get taken away, barely recognizable is the feeling of just relaxing and enjoying life and having to remember what day things are coming up.
Physical Health: Lost a little weight right away and then stopped, but that is okay, I feel pretty good because that first 2Kg/5lbs is staying off and it looks like about half the belly fat went with it. I am following a meal plan of peas, chicken, broccoli and beans with other things sometimes thrown in there. When I don’t finish my workout that day I find myself catching up at night because I don’t want to miss the next day.
Mental Health: I’m getting better, exercise seems to be helping, but 2 weeks in, I was surprised the first 2 weeks I felt no mood boost. I have energy now, I’m still mentally confused at times, but my body is ready for a hike or beach trip or teaching class, for whatever my life has my body can meet and exceed the needs, yet I wish I could say that of my mind.
Saturday: Looking back on the past two weeks I had a lot of baggage, I’m really hesitant to vent or to be in the space of looking through my baggage, until I can no longer cope. Then I’ll get intensely angry, then I’ll think about why I’m so tense. I’m a tense person, but on a good day I’m a cello string and on a bad day a violin string over tightened… so I don’t know what the future holds, but I can try to live my best life as I’ve been doing since my kids were born, I don’t like the family tension but I can refuse to feed into it more than what it is on it’s own, I don’t like not knowing if I’m doing the right thing disciplining my kids the way I am, but it really seems to be working well for once and ultimately all I can do is what I think is best in the present, it’s still going to take a long time to clean up after the storm, but I like that we are all thinking about how we can build differently, not just stronger, but to make sure we are putting things how we want them and not just how they were before, my clutter is kind of how it has been, I push through to a new status quo and then I can maintain it, yet there is no way for me to do a fast push, I make progress in a room or half a room or a countertop and that’s all I can do for quite some time, but unlike what I’ve heard from others it mostly does stay, with the exception of the places that get used super frequently like the kitchen prep counter and the school office…
Excited I just got some new plastic boxes, because those wood/cloth/woven will get ultra-moldy where we live (in the tropics). My husband brought me home the tubs yesterday and I actually used all of them today! I didn’t make any excuses, instead, I made a lot of decisions about what to keep and where and a lot of progress returning things to where I designated them to be, and then changes and some regular cleaning of hair/gunk/ext…
I made action bins for the most part, like a math bucket with all my son’s math blocks, calculator, abacus ext, so when it is math time I can get the whole bucket down and it’s ready, like a first aid kit, but for math.
There are 14 school kits now, there is a clay/bead kit (orange), painting/drawing kit (orange), math K level kit (yellow), math 2nd grade level (yellow), language writing k level (green), language 1st grade level (green), botany (purple), geography (purple), electronics (blue), robotics (blue).
There are locked sets of legos, blocks and magnet, grouped extra supplies, electronics, books, papers… those things are sorted by when I use them, or what they are. Many things were discarded.
It feels good to have my son’s toys, daughter’s toys, music stuff, and school stuff separated. There are still a few boxes of clutter, about three, but that’s better than what it was before. I am noticing my kids don’t have too many toys, enough for our small space, but actually not too many. They do get to play digitally though, and they enjoy music and art as if they were toys, so the amount feels like enough. It feels like we finally separated the wheat from the chaff as far as the toys go… I feel guilty I have been too tired to pick up the toys for the past year, and that even though I kept my stuff mostly in order my kids stuff did get chaotic plenty of time.
This Saturday I have faith in myself, that I am a good teacher to my kids, that I can organize the house (at least the common parts and my parts), that I will keep being a good teacher to my kids as long as we are together, and that their education will be both enough and helpful in their lives. I didn’t always feel I would conquer the house, but now my husband is helping me by supporting minimalism and funding buckets, having the right materials and furniture is a part of minimalism, which perhaps puzzled me before. There is saving money, there is living with what you have, but there is also not being willing to pay what you need to for the materials you need to live your best life, that’s not healthy long term.
ORGANIZATION – As I am getting more organized I feel a lot more confident, I feel like I can clean easier, do art projects with the kids more, get a better school routine with everything nicely organized.
CLOTHES – I have one rack of dresses, a jacket, a hat, I general I really like having just a few clothes, I think I am at the perfect level to do one in, one out, and that is new.
BOOKS – I think I should designate my book space vs my daughter and son’s, they both have a nice white shelf, so maybe that can be their clothes/book/paper area, I think toys will overflow into other areas.
PAPERS – I had too many papers and notes when I was in college, I moved out with my fiance with a file cabinet and about four boxes, we moved to our first married home with about two boxes, from there I reduced to one box, we moved to Hawaii with less than one box of papers… now all I have is a two file folders. A lot has gone digital, but some was also cut. Eventually, I will have to hit some digital decluttering as well, but it won’t be moldy and no one will trip on it at least.
TIME – It really is a possession, so it has to be decluttered as well.
6 Writing Time 7 Exercise/Shower 👍🏼/👎🏼, otherwise I catch up at night.
8:30 Breakfast/Language 👍🏼
9 Bus/Song Time/Writing 👍🏼 Add day of week song.
9:30 School Roll/Calendar/Writing/Planner/Letter of the Day/Feelings Pond 👍🏼 write date and word.
10 Lecture 10:30 Music Time 👍🏼
11 Story Time Younger/Lecture Older 🔥 Older child wants help, could both read? Or both exercise?
11:30 Block Time 🔥 Same Issue
12 Lunch 1 Outside Time 👍🏼
2 Values 3 Stoic Quote/Play Younger/Story Older🔥 This has become a catch up lecture.
4 Dinner/Science Chemistry Show 👍🏼/👎🏼
5 Lego 🔥
Sunday: Last week hot springs with friends, this week the beach, it was really fun. I try to support my blood family where and when I can, but often my friends become my true family because they accept me for who I am and help me achieve my goals rather than putting me down. “The key is to keep company only with people who uplift you, whose presence calls forth your best.” – Epictetus
Monday: Last week added more music and outside time back into the school day, this week we lost the family dog so we took the kids on a road trip. It was a beautiful day, the kids had fun at a new playground and in the water too. It was a proactive day because I decided to take the kids out whether or not my husband wanted to come, he decided to come and I enjoyed it, but I would have gone either way, not so many years ago I acted like a sheep when my husband was around, not deciding what to do because he may or may not want to do something.
Tuesday: Last week we covered chemistry, Wilma Rudolf, my son finished kindergarten math, this week I looked back on a poem from a long time ago:
“For me pain is the key that opens the closed doors, pain is the spark that lights the fire which keeps me alive during a cold night, pain lights the candle in a dark hallway, pain removes the splinters before they become lingering infections, pain is the mirror that shows me who I’ve become, pain helps me remember what matters, pain cuts through illusions of what can’t be true no matter who says it’s true, pain is the sword of truth in my life, the slap in the face that wakes me up before I fall off a cliff playing Pokemon Go, pain has been the Bonnie to my Clyde and I can’t imagine who I would be without it.”
From “Cookies and Pain.”
I realize that the post “Cookies and Pain” was the metanoia of my life, I know where my darkest point was (when I lost my baby), where my loneliest point was (in mysielumaisema in Yosemite) and where my turning point was (outside the college snack shop), I feel like I’ve never hit my high point yet. I feel like I lived my life not as myself and therefore wasn’t a good “me”, I feel like I’ll need to be a good me to reach that high point and it may take some time, but there is a little joy in not having reached your high point, because that means it is still to come, unlike our much-beloved dog, which is clearly dead and past now. My sister had left on a trip, the dog very ill, my sister came home and the dog, which could barely walk went to the gate to show she wanted to see my sister, they cuddled and the dog smiled a big smile and wagged her tail weakly… we always accused that dog of being food-focused, but in her last week she didn’t eat and she was focused on her loved ones, so I guess I misjudged her. No one knows what happens after the shell of the body is cast off, but I don’t feel like it is the end, so I’m not sad, to be sad I would have to know there was a loss, but I don’t really know if it’s a loss or a transfer, I don’t think I will ever know while I am alive, so why be sad about an unknown?
I’ve been looking at old posts consolidating common themes like my journey to build a writing habit ext. and trying to consolidate them into articles that combine about 10 posts each.
Wednesday: Last week zoo, karate, our dog was really sick. This week the dog is dead, we are still arranging the cremation… we had a nice art workshop day at the park.
Thursday: Last week harsh discipline, left quad tear, wanted to put systems in place at home over time. This week, I realize that I’m living my best life now, it’s a bit more seeing the kids playing outside with friends, a bit more exercise, a bit more writing, and a more bit martial arts, but it’s not 200K more of income or parties of 60+ people, it’s just two or three families with little kids playing, a lot like RIE Regional Infant Education was, it’s like the extension of Magda Gerber’s RIE. I was always looking for a clear and crazy purpose like I make political mugs or I teach dogs ballet, but I guess for me it’s 1/5 helping kids, 1/5 exercise, 1/5 martial arts,1/5 writing, 1/5 music, and art, that’s my “perfect life” and it’s been pretty close to me I just didn’t understand that it could be found and that it would be so messy. The pandemic stripped me of what I love to do, but it stripped me of many things I hated doing that other people pushed on me, having both those things stripped away it’s very important to me that I don’t just start doing the things I hated again when people try to guilt me into them, this gave me a clean break, it was hard, but now I have the habits I most enjoy spending my life doing, right now is a critical time of guarding my habits until they can grow stronger and more natural feeling, it’s important to be slightly flexible, but then stop before other people’s agendas have taken over all my free time again.
At midday I got sick, I had chills and a sore throat, hoping it will pass soon, did most the normal stuff, dishes, cooking, school, fed the animals, but didn’t feel like extra laundry or gardening.
Friday: Last week our dog really threw me off timewise, I wasn’t mad then, now I knew that she was dying and I’m not guilty because I wasn’t mad, I was just noticing that it threw us all off-kilter and that’s okay, it’s okay to notice, it’s okay to be off-kilter, and it’s okay to need support. I’ve been working on organizing the house, eating better, consolidating old posts into longer posts (specifically the one about how I formed a writing habit – kind of), but I’ve been taking it a bit easy, not exercising Thursday and Friday because I’m sick. Took a COVID test, negative, but I’ve heard the tests are sometimes false negative so I’m acting like it’s not yet still keeping track of my germs, washing hands, not coughing in the common space ext. It wasn’t a perfect week, but I was surprised it wasn’t worse seeing that our favorite family dog died last week. I dropped off the body for cremation on Thursday morning, don’t know when the pickup is yet… I’m hoping to get mostly or all better before Sunday so I don’t have to cancel martial arts… Spent a lot of Thursday and Friday reading Hamlet with my daughter, halfway through. I had never read it, sure I read Shakespeare, but it happened to be “Romeo and Juliet” and “Othello” and “Midsummer’s Dream” when I was in school. Never thought I would be reading Hamlet’s part even at home…
Keep exercising – keep taking the kids to the Adventure Scouts Meetings – Keep teaching Karate.
“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint
and that voice will be silenced.”
– Vincent Van Gogh
“Likewise with randomness, uncertainty, chaos; you want to use them, not hide from them.
You want to be the fire and wish for the wind.
– Nassim Taleb, Antifragile
Social Health: Restarted martial arts, classes this year = 2. Adventure Scouts meetings zoo = 2 ocean = 1.
Mental Health: Starting the clean-up and organizing the office/school stuff has been uplifting so far…
Physical Health: Losing 7 kilo, 2 lost so far, getting in better shape in general. Saturday did Cardio, Sunday Total Body Circuit and swimming, Monday Alphabet Exercise and Speed 1.0 Thursday Cardio again, then skipped Wednesday and ended up on the original schedule, which is easier to remember.
Saturday: I vented a lot, I know I could delete the complaints, but they were all a bit necessary to me finding out why I was so angry… I did some garden work restoring a little access to the backyard… via the paths. The new sickle works well for ginger. I took orange peel off the lawn it made me really angry it was there… it must have been a family member just dumping trash in our main view, it bothers me that I would have to ask anyone to throw trash in a trash can, it bothers me a lot.
IDENTIFIED STRESS POINTS Venting is important for me personally, because stress had been sapping my energy and I needed to parse my points of stress to see which I could do anything about, which were unimportant vs which were major points to address, in the end, my main point of stress 1. I don’t where I’ll be living in the next 1-3-5 years. 2. tension in the family over hoarding. 3. disciplining the kids. 4. clean up after a big storm. 5. my own clutter in the home/trouble organizing.
EMOTIONAL EXPANSION – I felt better after venting by writing and just “expansion” of just feeling okay feeling angry.
DETERMINATION – I made up my mind to do the best I could to live where I am despite that we may be moving later, that is particularly hard for me because we moved around every two years when I was a little kid, so you may make friends, but then you have to leave them, in the end, that’s what turned me from an extrovert to an introvert, friends weren’t worth the pain of getting to know and then losing so soon. Part of the reason we moved was my mom didn’t clean, so a new place is nicer than one which hasn’t been cleaned in two years, my dad didn’t clean either, so cleaning was tricky to learn for me, but I was never tempted not to clean, I’m not the best at it, but I don’t like things crazy messy at all.
ORGANIZATION – Organizing my own stuff has been interesting, I’m combining two households of school/art materials, me of California and me of Hawaii, yesterday my daughter went through her drawings and drawing notebooks to pick which ones she wanted in her portfolio, I didn’t question her about which to keep, the ones she kept we put in a plastic sheet binder because otherwise, paper drawings will mold here very soon. I would rather work room by room, but my bedroom is a mix of kids’ toys, craft items, and school stuff and so is the office, so it’s better to group what I can.
CLOTHES – It’s kind of Kon Mari style right now, but I don’t think I have excess clothes because I am always looking to discard excess clothes whenever new ones come in or when I notice the old ones are “quite” old.
BOOKS – So, I guess it should be books time then, I have a bit too much in the bedroom bookshelf, I could separate a milk crate of books out from that.
PAPERS – As I was sorting the papers I found a ton of draft schedules that I had tried… It was kind of sad that I am always struggling to make a schedule, but at least it is also written evidence that I’m always trying to live my best life and do the best I can for my kids… Many I finally threw away, it felt good throwing away planners I didn’t need, some had cool activities we did in school, or habit formation notes, like how many times we went swimming, but none of it was really needed, all the school activities are in my brain as well.
9:30 School Roll/Calendar/Writing/Planner/Letter of the Day/Feelings Pond
10 Lecture 10:30 Music Time 11 Story Time 11:30 Block Time 12 Lunch 1 Outside 2 Values 3 Stoic Quote
4 Dinner/Science Economics 5 Lego
I think I will try to bring that schedule back kind of, but I am able to get up at 6ish lately…
So 6 Writing Time 7 Exercise/Shower 8:30 Breakfast/Language 9 Song Time/Bus Time
9:30 I Am the Pond Meditation, EQ Calendar, School Roll, Letter of the Day Writing/Drawing Practice
10 Lecture 10:30 Music Time 11 Story Time Younger 11:30 Block Time for Younger (Lecture 2 Older)
12 Lunch 1 Outside Time 2 Stoic Quote and Values Story Time Older (Play Younger)
3 School Younger (Free Time Older) 4 Dinner with Crash Course Chemistry 5 Lego+
So when I started organizing school I ran into videos about organizing the time/curriculum of school, specifically Charlotte Mason type schools, that is not what I was looking for, I wanted to organize the “stuff”, but going through my papers I found the old schedule that somehow called to me to adapt it… it really felt special, throwing away 40+ old schedules, this one really called to me emotionally, so much so that I bought a bus to do bus time again. It was $34… I’ve really been spending a lot lately, I notice that, but I’m not yet worried about it. I kind of miss working and making my own money, but for now, things are okay the way they are, really no one wants to babysit my kids while I work yet, maybe when they are older. I’m actually very excited to go with this schedule it had been working really well in California before I moved to Hawaii, the kids were 1 and 4, now they are 2 and 6, before I used all my own curriculum now we use Acellus plus my lessons, a lot has changed for the better. While my personal mental health suffered and the world suffered my school improved and my kids’ life stayed decent, I think that’s what I was sacrificing for and in the end, I’m not sorry, but I have to put a bit into my own tank too, or it won’t work long term… the pandemic showed me who cares about me (my husband and sister) and who I care about (my kids), but it showed me the limits of my husband’s patience, my father and sister’s mental health and the limits of my ability to respect my father and meet him halfway, I can’t really do that, I hit a breaking point with him where I won’t put on a facade that he wants the whole family to share, he is welcome in my life, but I won’t accept his restrictions on my life or his criticisms or even his judgment, he may “have it”, but I don’t have to “accept it”. Once I thought I could never fit in my dad’s shoes, now I find he isn’t half the man I am, even though I’m a woman. It’s because I don’t hide from problems in TV or anything and he does, it’s because I don’t leave dishes for other people to clean and throw my trash everywhere and he does, it’s not that he isn’t a good person in any way, it’s because he takes the easy way out more than the hard way and I take the hard way more than the easy way. That’s the truth about why I have lost respect for him and gained it for myself.
Sunday: Visited hot springs with friends, it was really fun and relaxing. The first day that felt right in a long time.
Monday: Tried the old school schedule, did exercise, music, outside time, storytime, and music time didn’t go well, but exercise and outside time did. Tired from swimming yesterday, but so glad that we formed an “Adventure Scout Unit” for our girls. It may be stupid that I want to teach martial arts, but that’s what makes me feel like life makes sense. And I think taking the kids to play with their friends is that for them.
Tuesday: Second day on the old schedule, the kids enjoy it, we get less done with the class progress, but that is probably fine. The kids have both learned so much I want to integrate what they know more than I want to just teach a lot. In chemistry we covered significant figures, we covered error:
Yes, it was hard and above grade level, but I like it because I want to show that we need the math before we get to it in math so it makes sense to be learning it at all. This is exactly the kind of math/science integration I wanted to get and I’m happy to be doing it even if it means going slow and looking for examples. We covered accuracy vs precision as well and average and range calculations, so it was a dense day for my daughter. We learned about Wilma Rudolf who went from not walking due to polio to three Olympic gold running metals, that was really inspirational. Health and chemistry classes have been really useful to talk about those topics. My son finished kindergarten math, he is not yet three, but almost three, he is reading really well and I think if he talked clearer people would notice how smart he is, but he doesn’t write or speak too clearly (about normal) so if it wasn’t for me seeing him do his school work I wouldn’t have known how good his is at math and reading either. My daughter is quite smart, but my son is very surprisingly ahead, probably due to my daughter teaching him…
Wednesday: Went to the zoo, had a great day, taught karate, but coming back home the dog was really sick or seemed that way… had to clean up a lot of foul blood and urine and vomit off the floor, beds, and sofa… so.
Thursday: The dog being sick distracted the kids during school, still got some math/agriculture classes done, but having a sick dog wet blankets the day a bit, though the kids still wanted to sing. My daughter lied to me about her 1 hour game timer going off to try to get more time and I gave her harsh discipline, lying is one thing I can’t abide in people who expect me to do my best with them and be honest with them. I was sad to discipline her, but the sooner she learns not to lie to me the better it will be for her, her first grade report card says “respects the rights of others” when you lie you rob others to their right to the truth… I know I’m very stubborn about lying, but I think it’s an upward trend towards honesty or a downward spiral to flakiness. I think when you lie to others too much you do something worse, I think you start lying to yourself, then you do it so much it’s automatic, ANTS automatic negative thoughts have been shown to hurt your brain, therefore honesty is actually a health concern. Exercised at night, but it was awkward, felt my left quad tear a bit so I stopped massaged it and restarted. I need to stretch more. Been frustrated trying to get the house clean for about a year already… when I came back last November it was full of mold, clutter, spiders, mice and broken glass as if no one lived here, but my dad and sister were living there that way… after my grandfather died the funeral being delayed seemed to make the family really gloomy, but I was surprised they knew I was coming and didn’t at least pick up the broken glass since I was coming with a baby and child. But they didn’t. My family has issues. So it’s that extra element of frustration that I am the only adult fighting the clutter, my sister goes to her room to avoid it and my father alternates between causing messes, ignoring messes, and complaining about other people’s clutter without cleaning his. I’m so angry about it, I think I can actually clean it up though, I think once systems are in place to do most normal stuff, like take in groceries, return other people’s items and throw away trash, then even though my family is messy I think they will be able to keep going on a system… it frustrates me and it confuses me that they don’t already have a system, but it’s the as is situation so therefore got to deal with it.
Friday: Our dog is really ill, started medicine today at least. Magots are hatching in the kitchen also… so extra cleaning and laundry put me behind on my workout, but maybe going to do it at night… School is going well, covered reproduction in avian and mammals today, both genders, also covered the romantic period of theatre, Goethe, and “or” “and” computer coding. School is really going very well, added music, added music lessons, added EQ/labeling emotions, added outside time, just very well over all. Kind of off schedule though due to the extra dog issues.
So trying to do my best despite the dog being really ill… not that I don’t like the dog, but not everybody gets to fall apart all together.
Physical Health: Exercising a ton more, it’s helping with my body, I lost six pounds, but it hasn’t been a cure-all for my mind this time around. I am still grumpy, I am still not as optimistic as before. So I lost six pounds of belly fat in one week, especially due to the bean/broccoli meal plan, but I don’t feel great about life as I normally do when working out.
Social Health: Met up with a small group for martial arts class, class size of 4 kids from two households, it felt very ok to me to have a small group meet at the same time public school classes of 25 kids from 25 households are still meeting up, the 2-3 household sizes we meet seems fair and without any social contact I think my kids will lack normal experiences in a way that isn’t fair to them. It was really good to see the kids smile, hear them laugh, hand out some pine bonsais I’ve grown from seed, it felt necessary to my sanity to see real people and remember there are other people who still exist in the world non-digitally.
The first week of 2022:
Saturday: I was really grumpy during New Year’s Eve, people kept talking over my sister and I, and I am sick of that, we both speak more quietly, but I’m not going to listen to other people with respect who don’t do the same back. Done with that. I may have to hear loud people, but not with “respect”.
Sunday: I’m really excited to start martial arts again, but it’s been rocky because setting a day was hard, then it got postponed because my son was sick, so not only did I want him to get better “to get better,” but also to not pass along germs, and give me time to clean the majority of the germs out of the house, so restarting the restart was a bit sad, because I don’t like to be the weak link.
I’m halfway between wanting to try to do a lot and wanting to do nothing, therefore, have nothing fail due to the pandemic or other outside factors… that’s the truth, I can no longer push myself to pretend that I’ll be unaffected by the many changes and restrictions still going on, I can do some things, but being unaffected, that’s unrealistic in my area.
Monday: I had fun during Kwanzaa, because it was something I could do that was unaffected, so I was thinking of doing a mini Kwanzaa all year long. The first day of Kwanzaa is Umoja unity, I would spend some family or friend time on Sunday, then Monday the first of the challenges, Kujichagulia/Self Determination I would do goal setting. I know if I do that Monday it’s not all set for the start of Monday, but right now I’m okay with that. I didn’t want to tell people my real resolutions because of “how supportive” my family is… but I’ve got two, starting to teach martial arts again and working on a book, it doesn’t matter if I finish, but it would be good to start or at least start starting ie work on specific writing skills or habits ext.
Still enjoying homeschool, it was really cool my daughter’s favorite author sent us the beginning of her new book early so for reading class we got to popcorn read a brand new book written by my daughter’s favorite author, I also took the time to have her write her top three reasons to learn English so that she knows she is working towards learning something useful to her future instead of something useless and purely arbitrary (which school can often feel like as a little kid).
When I looked back on last year most of the things I wanted to do didn’t work or weren’t perfect, but many things like teaching Spanish to my daughter, happened about 250 days out of the year, so that’s 69%, which isn’t perfect. I wanted to record a bitmoji/day each day, that didn’t happen, yet it happened a lot. I wanted to write a book, it didn’t happen, but I did write somewhat. I didn’t exercise a ton, but I did enough to actually stay in good-ish shape. I didn’t do everything right, but I did work towards a lot of things I wanted to do, rebuilding my family relationship in therapy, using more consistent discipline at home, deciding on homeschool, relocating to Hawaii, deciding to teach Karate for now rather than BJJ or not at all. A lot of invisible decisions were made and priorities shifted, I realized I couldn’t really make a farm full out yet, not with the energy/funding/time I have right now. I could plan and prep and take small steps, but in reality, there are limits and if I am going to home school and teach martial arts, and exercise and clean up, and meal plan and meal prep, that’s 95% of all my energy/funding/time without farming. Maybe someday. But my real resolution was to stay honest in a world of fake news and liars, there are plenty of honest people, but sometimes it’s hard to remember that when you are surrounded by people who lie.
Tuesday: Super grumpy, didn’t want to hit the manual writing problems we hit in homeschool. Been disciplining both kids more, but hoping that it’s a phase and that they learn to do what we say ie don’t throw the glasses, don’t hit your sister in the face with a truck, if not on their own, at least hoping when they are told they will stop. I’ve never had the kids do as I say and it gets really old. Some parents ask too much, but on the other extreme when they won’t do basic stuff when they are told they are so embarrassing they get taken out less, eventually, they lose out when they are not motivated to behave within normal limits, I’ve been on that extreme for a long time and I know it’s not a better place than the opposite extreme, trying to head towards the middle ground this year.
Wednesday: The opposite of Tuesday, Tuesday being a rough and off day, Wednesday was a rare day when I felt truly alive and most things went well. It started with black beans for breakfast, being able to nail down a meal plan, however plain, was essential to being more successful this week.
Actually looking back Wednesday didn’t start with breakfast, it started with exercise at 6AM, I did a double day, then later breakfast, then teaching karate, then playing at the zoo. Breakfast was cool though, because we all ate together, black bean soup. We all really enjoy black beans.
Starting martial arts is always emotional for me, as the instructor you have to feel like you have enough to teach that it is fair to the students, no one is perfect in martial arts, skills really aren’t about the belt level, and belt levels aren’t really about skills, it’s more of a motivational thing to validate that the school is providing results via improvement of some kind. Bruce Lee was known to oppose the belt system in principle and I do as well. When I was in karate it was a slight unevenness of skill, but in Jiu-Jitsu it’s a vast unevenness. Someone may walk in with a white belt and dominate or nearly dominate a black belt who is hesitant or confused, blue belts, purple belts, and brown belts may or may not have a firmer grasp of sweeps and correct techniques and blue belt teachers may or may not match a black belt teacher at teaching, depending on what they are teaching. Each individual has a different threshold for attention to detail, there are some personal traits good teachers need that you don’t need to be good yourself. I think the things that make a good martial arts teacher are attention to detail, kindness in corrections, and consistency. Also belief in the moves, which is helped from competition or use, and a lack of hesitance. I’ve known teachers who are monetarily successful and well respected who are harsh, tyrannical, and disrespectful, but I’ve known teachers who were steadfast, held their values along side the techniques (for example not gambling on students at tournaments, not doing excessive belt testing to make a larger income, not sleeping with students ext). There is definitely a technical aspect of teachers knowing where the leverage should be, how the set up leads to the move and leads to defense or counters ext, but there is a dignity that was inherent to the older martial arts, as they were taught by monks, that simply isn’t there in all modern instructors. There was an ethical code that was a part of the asian martial arts, which is nuanced and hard to understand. So what I’m saying is that there is the technical side, but there is also the ethical side to martial arts and for me they don’t ultimately stand apart, they are both essential. Prepandemic I was a MMA Instructor, Late Pandemic I am a Karate Instructor, so it was a big shift, to teach an older art form, modern changes are made, in equipment, in custom, in rules, in inclusion, but some things stay the same from thousands of years ago forward. Judo is the predecessor of BJJ, Karate the Japanese localization of Kung Fu, so it’s back to Ng Mui a female monk from the Henan Shaolin Monastery (destroyed by Manchu forces) who defeated emperor Kangxi during his reign in 1662-1722 and retreated to the White Crane Temple. The legend goes that without her kung fu would have been lost, that it had dwindled to one teacher, but I don’t think it can be lost in much the same way mathematics isn’t lost, I think each region of martial arts develops a distinct, but equivalent form over time.
But yes teaching martial arts I feel I have to question myself as a holder of the technical knowledge, as a person, am I physically fit, am I mentally fit… from there I question all the techniques, for example the inside to outside block uchi ude uke replaces on a superior tan sao block, so is it worth drilling it vs the tan sao? Then the logistical details, how many mats, what location, what time slot, how much conditioning, how much partner drills (kihon).
But the nice thing about martial arts is that you see the truth, if something you thought would work, doesn’t work, you see it. A sweep needs to move you from bottom to top, if it doesn’t, you need a different sweep. A block off balances the attacker and puts them in the position you want to set up for the next move, it might give you momentum as well, it might distract them as well, it may divert an attack as well.
So, I restarted martial arts, I bought a new uniform six kilos too small, and I’m losing some winter fat to hopefully fit it when it comes. If I do I will be at my ideal health weight, but I don’t know if I will do the opposite and go up in weight from muscle gain, but for me it doesn’t matter as long as the fat burns off a bit. First I went three pounds up, I think in muscle, then six down, I hope in fat loss.
Thursday: In school, we covered agriculture (feed rations), social studies (including George Washington Carver), it was another hard day of discipline. We were able to finish our first project of repair from the huge snowstorm that hit our area, the Kona Low, rehanging the gate after weatherproofing it… since my husband came home it’s still a lot of work with both the house and the kids, it always feels like we are missing one person we need at home. School was not perfect but both kids made progress, I moved into the living room and out of the bedroom and office so I would have room for both kids’ desks to be near one another to go back and forth helping them.
Friday: In school, we covered theater, particularly theatre riots, which was interesting, many things such as racial tension have caused theater riots in the past, in Paris, in the US, all over. We also covered math and computer coding. After school, we watched Little House on the Prarie, an episode where an Irish man didn’t want to be teamed up with an African American man to drive a wagon of blasting oil, even though he was a good worker, that paralleled the George Washington Carver lesson well, but parallels modern life a bit too well also. Another hard day for discipline, it feels like I can’t keep bringing up the same issues, but it’s my goal to bring them up every time and hopefully, when 2022 is over I hope both the kids will do what they are told to do most of the time. Because it’s not cute when every meal is annoying, it’s not cute when I spend 7 days without them listening then don’t get a break, because we don’t have babysitters/relatives who will take a long shift with them, it’s not cute that they hit people and throw other people’s stuff like glasses and phones onto the floor hard… it’s not full of liberty and wonder and magic when children don’t become disciplined.
My social and physical health has been on a huge uptrend, but behind my mental health has been mid to low all week, I’m worn down mentally, even as my body has energy my mind is running on empty. Discipline is really draining, but I’m not going to not do it. I’m able to ramp up what I’m doing with the kids, painting, blocks, exercise, yet not nearly as much as they still would like. I’m able to ramp up cleaning the house, which looks horrible at times and other times looks okay but has mold due to our climate… It’s a dangerous game of being already spread too thin and wanting to do much more than I can do. Exercise pays off, because I’m not injured or out of shape it pays me back more energy than it costs, and mine, in particular, is quick 25 minutes a day on average, eating well pays off, again more energy. I didn’t know during the pandemic I put on about 7 kg/16 extra pounds, but now after losing 2/6 of them I do feel better. My mood has been swinging around a lot more than normal for me, anger, grumpy, optimistic, without a relaxed mood that normally fills my days. If I had to guess I would say the pandemic is wearing on me, because my dad blasts the death count/ill count each day around dinner time, which I HATE. We are not the CDC is there any reason for a daily update other than to go crazy or be angry? I don’t know why a weekly death count wouldn’t be more than fine, but neither did I save enough money for my own home, so yeah it’s stressful when you live with someone who has anxiety because even if you don’t share it, there is this tension that you know you may not be willing to tow their line or tolerate their rituals, you do care for their well being, but they don’t allow you to help them with that, they don’t go to therapy, they don’t troubleshoot solutions on a household level, they just fixate on scary things, don’t take actions, don’t have relaxed open discussions… Right now I live in Hawaii and I’m growing my life here, but my husband and I will probably move in the next few years because of how not-fun it is to live with someone with anxiety. It sounds unkind, but it’s more important for us to live our best lives and give the kids the least stressful home we can, but we don’t think it will ultimately be the one we are in now, so hanging over making friends, getting in shape, making routines, teaching martial arts is the feeling it will all be torn down soon and we will have to start over again somewhere else. There is a feeling of anger at my dad for being the way he is, he was always a hoarder when I grew up, he left broken glass and fish hooks all over the apartment for us to get hurt, he didn’t bother to see the mess we lived in or clean it up, now he has a new house so it’s not too dirty, but he is starting to clutter the outside, all the clutter isn’t the worst thing, the worst thing is the way he obsesses over meaningless things and disengages with living people, then he snaps back and is upset nothing social is planned after he refused to go to it for weeks, he holds grudges about made up occurrences, he imagines people are stealing things that are not there and that he needs to fortify the house from theives instead of just getting a security system or a regular fence…
I’m not trying to complain, I’m trying to identify why I feel so tense and drained.
I feel so tense and drained because I’m doing my best living in a household that I probably can’t even be healthy and happy in, I know I’m going to have to move again and I’m scared to “unpack” myself if I will someday have to move again, I feel bad that things aren’t working out well living with my dad because I wanted to help him as he gets older, I wanted to be close so he could enjoy the kids, but it doesn’t seem like that will happen because his clutter and anxiety really bothers me and my husband a lot. We aren’t leaving yet, but when we do I don’t know if it will be on good terms to return in the summer or on bad terms to pretty much not worry about coming back.
So my family of four moved to Hawaii to be close to my dad and help him with his garden and home, but he annoys us so much with his anxiety and tangential communication style that we will most likely get the F out when we find a new home, then I don’t know if I’ll return to clean a massive mess once a year, or not at all. Ha… so that’s my main stress.