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Learning in Freedom

Welcome to Learning in Freedom, a blog all about the learning adventures (and mishaps) of the Allen family. My four children are unschooled, following their interests and passions every day and living the lives of their choosing. The purpose of this blog is to share our every day lives (and my not-so-humble opinons) with anyone interested in stopping by. We hope this will give a glimpse of how natural learning unfolds from day to day......

Sunday, August 03, 2008

"Average" days...

Instead of doing a set 24 hour period for the Blog Carnival, I went back over my pictures and pulled out several that display the rhythm of different days. I work four days per week, so sometimes the kids are doing things with their Dad that I'm not aware of until I get home.

Many days they are self-entertaining and their favorite things include; World of Warcraft, Warcraft (Jared has been creating his own map with quests and characters), Oblivion, Half-life, Club Penguin, Nick Jr., Cartoonnetwork (all of the former three are websites Jalen adores) a variety of tv games and live games, fort building, crafting and cookie baking with a few legos, brio train-tracks or other building materials thrown in for good measure.

One of the former regulars in my life has moved on, so there is definitely a process happening as I transition into a different kind of "average" day. Trevor is happily ensconced in Hendersonville now and it's easier to keep up with him through Jen's blog (his other Mom).:)

As for the beauties that are still here.....

Sierra loves to mix cornstarch and water for some messy fun. Recently she did a huge bowl of it which led to some very interesting mess all over the deck. They had their feet in it and played until after dark.

Artist Trading Cards have been a staple in and out of our lives the last few years. We had a trade this week and are inspired to clean out the art room (once again) so we can create more!

Activities in the yard include our trampoline, the ropes hanging from the deck, a swing on the back of the property (where the taller trees are), the garden and the beehive.

Cookie baking has become pretty common for Sierra lately. She's been bringing her lavender sugar cookies to recent gatherings where they've been a big hit with our friends.

Bella the kitty and Tica the rabbit are the furry regulars....

No day looks the same for us, but there have been certain "sameness" in most days...tea in the morning...

...and guitar playing with singing, every evening. Even on nights I close and don't get home until 9:30pm or so, I can count on this. We've had a lot of fun trying to get a set-list together for future camp-outs and gatherings with our local tribe.

Bleu was spending time under the trampoline fort when the weather was cooler, but the boys have done their it's-too-hot-to-be-outside retreat for the summer and Sierra simply mocks them for not being tough enough. They really don't care that she's more of the outdoors person, along with Bleu and I. She likes that extra time with us too! Hiking is something we mostly share with her lately. The boys haven't been much into friend gatherings lately either, so she's eating it up.

It works out well most of the time, because Bleu is much less social than I and he can stay home with the boys while Sierra and I craft, play and swim with our favorite peeps. Jalen likes to come along if there's water or bows and arrows involved usually.

Why go outside when you have a roller blading center in your house? Jalen loves to make circles through our dining/living room/kitchen area. I knew those laminate floors were good for something! Sometimes they pull out the scooter instead. He loves showing off all his cool tricks.

One of his recent favorite activities is to go out on the trampoline in the dark. We jump for a while then lay and watch the stars or have interesting conversations (he's quite the conversationalist if you like bordering on the surreal...which I do fortunately).

Last night it went something like this:

He was describing how his new tooth was growing.

Ren: "Oh, your new tooth is growing in?"
J: "NO, it's growing OUT"
Ren: "That's what 'growing in' means. I don't know why we say it that way."
J: "Oh, cuz it's growing INTO the universe"

Translation: It's emerging into the universe

He's been really fascinated with the concept of "universe" lately. We have loooonnngggg conversations about what's included in "the universe".

"That tree and that car and my eyelashes and Bella and____________(fill in the blank as you choose) are all part of the universe!!" *giggle, giggle* It's all so amazing to him. It's very cool to watch him try to absorb this concept of "everything that ever was and ever will be".

As I was notating the above conversation, he urges me to hurry up (it's about 1am at this point).
"I'm just a kid, I need my sleep"
Ren: "wha? You need your sleep because you're a kid? What about me?"
J: "You're a grown-up so you don't need as much sleep."
Ren: "Oh really? Why is that?"
J: "Because grown-ups have already slept their whole lives"

Damn. That's more insightful than you even realize buddy! So I lay next to him, rubbing his back as he explains more about how he needs more sleep than me and I ponder how us grown-ups really can be quite asleep even when we think we're awake.

Thanks for the reminder about how to really live...once again.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i love that first photo with the drippy cornstarch stuff. wonderful!
my wee little boys love to add food coloring and paint with the stuff. it makes for interesting paintings with lots of different textures.

btw, i've been reading your blog for a year at least, but almost never comment...until now.

11:53 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

I love that *grown ups have slept most of their lives*

Kids are so insightful :)

I'm not going to do a 24 hour thing either, I'll just do an average, what we've been up to lately post, I think...

4:40 PM  
Blogger Snavleys said...

Oh, but you can never get enough sleep Kai boy! Sleeping is so wonderful and I would love to take a nap with you:) I needed that Jalenism! Love you!

2:40 AM  
Blogger Ren said...

Well I'm glad you finally said "hello" ladybug-zen! I'm always honored and a bit baffled when someone tells me they read here regular-like.

I love to get comments so don't be shy!

9:35 AM  
Blogger laura said...

we love doing the cornstarch goop too. i sometimes sit with it on the couch and run my fingers through it endlessly while watching tv. my fingers end up feeling so weird.

we like to get it just right so that you can hit it real hard and it feels like you're hitting a rock but if you slide your fingers in slowly it's all liquidy again. it's my favorite goop!

i love all your pix of ordinary yet extraordinary events.

10:28 AM  
Anonymous Julie said...

Great tooth story. Funny about the rollerblading. (We designed the house we'll be moving into sometime in 2009 so there's a circular traffic pattern for skating and biking!)

7:12 AM  
Blogger Faith Void said...

the pic of Seirra with the goop is awesome. I wanna play too!

7:12 AM  

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