I need a Rule of Six to make sure that I can get it all done. I need my list of subjects to cover and experiences to have to be short and memorable. I need time left over after school to take care of other things. That allows me to walk, to read, to study for the classes that I tutor, and to write.
I need my short of list of six things to tell me what is important. I need to know how to order my day. And at the end of the day, when I am completely exhausted, I want to be able to look back and see that I did what I believe is important for my family and for my home.
I like that if I have done with my children the six things on this list I can mentally check the “I home educated today” box that is in my head and move on to less intentional educational work.
This is a “rule” but it isn’t a straitjacket. Sometimes, it is set aside because it is 78 degrees outside in January, and we have to meet some friends at the park. Sometimes, I miss something key in the beginning and never find my way fully back to what the plan for the day was.
For instance: today, I was unsuccessful in rejoicing. I got up this morning early and tinkered around with the website. I was about to start writing when I made a discovery that brought a lot of disappointment in one of my sons and started the day on the wrong foot. Then, I read online of an event experienced by an acquaintance of mine that stirred the Grief Monster, which still rears its ugly head every once in a while. As the day went on, I sank. Instead of looking for things to be thankful for, or worshipping, or praying, I cried and grumped and scolded. That kind of day doesn’t happen often anymore, but today it did. It never ceases to amaze me that the simple act of rejoicing keeps both my heart and my head in a much better place than it otherwise would be.
We did accomplish the remembering, the reasoning, the reading, and the recording today, but my lack of rejoicing certainly interfered in how I related to everyone I saw. Because I have a Rule for what I want in a day, I can look back over this day, but my finger on the problem, and think “Tomorrow! Tomorrow I will take care to rejoice.” Because, like Anne Shirley says, “Tomorrow is a new day that doesn’t have any mistakes in it yet.”