Jenny Rose celebrated her second birthday soon after the school year started—the first year I was homeschooling two not just one.
It was very difficult for me. I found myself trying to get her out of the way during school hours because she climbed all over us, wanted to grab our books and materials, and seemed to be at her fussiest no matter what time we got things out.
I found myself neglecting areas of training and discipline that I had been very consistent on with the older girls. I was frustrated with her and frustrated with myself.
The next year went better, although I had to deal with the fruit of the training and discipline neglect. God had to deal with my attitude first. He showed me that Jenny Rose is not an “interruption” in my schooling but she is a gift and a blessing. (It’s important to remember that when children are toddlers!) The size and spacing of my family was not a mistake but God’s best for me. God also reminded me not to miss this phase of her life—Jenny Rose will never be a toddler again, doing and saying all those cute little things! After my attitude was dealt with, I had to change my expectations.
Simplifying our schedule and lowering our extracurricular activity level helped a lot. Less is sometimes more. Then I asked God to show me the simplest and most effective way to teach. That way I’m not wading through mounds and mounds of useless “busy work.”
Here is what I learned the hard way: I need to interact with my little ones often, which sometimes slows down the schedule.
Often when Jenny Rose was fussy, two minutes of cuddling and hugging in the rocking chair would change her whole perspective on life and allow me to continue schooling. I also need to be vigilant so I could train and discipline as circumstances arose.
“Teaching” time had to be in my schedule now since so much is going on with the older children.
Time had to be planned to play dolls, work on puzzles, or finger paint with Jenny Rose.
I also assigned the older girls 15 minutes a day to read to or “teach” Jenny Rose something fun.
Here are some activities that Jenny Rose engaged in while the older ones were doing school with Mom:
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Blessings to you and your family!