Letters to Our Children – November 2020

Dear Ariya,

It’s November, and the quarter is ending.  You’ve done some benchmarking at school, and wow, you’re such a smart girl.  You’re reading at a 6th grade level!  I think you impressed your teacher.  Your report card showed A+s all around.  Pretty amazing stuff.  But i think we realized that being tied to your laptop from 9am – 1pm every day was pretty draining.  Plus the assignments on top of that, on your laptop.  There were days you would be on your chromebook all day.  So we bit the bullet.  I put in a request to homeschool and away we went.

You were very excited to start homeschooling.  But there have been some trying moments.  You are a very good writer, but you really don’t like writing.  I feel like it’s because you have so many thoughts running through your head that you can’t write fast enough, and your hand gets so tired.  But you have to practice, and you do not want to listen to me when I say you have to practice.

We had a great first day, going on a hike outside, journalling, reading tall tales, trying out a new math program with Beast Academy.  You really don’t like to be challenged.  And Beast Academy is really challenging you.  You’re a smart girl.  And you understand this stuff.  Math doesn’t come as easy as reading does, but you get it, it just takes a little time. This isn’t a competition, this isn’t a race.  But sometimes you just want to get it over with so you can play.  Oh, it’s going to be a long school year.

But you still see Ms. Mary, you still have art with Ms. Erica, you still do ballet with Ms. Abby, and jazz with Ms Alyssa.  So there’s a little bit of fun there. 🙂

In times of COVID, it’s tough being able to see family safely and feeling comfortable doing it.  We headed down to Richmond while there were a ton of contractors at the house doing work.  And as soon as I got home, l got hit with a fever and chills.  It was not fun.  We were visiting with Nani and Nanu, and you all were looking forward to spending time with them.  But with my fever, I had a major scare, thinking that I was COVID positive.  We wore masks, I drove all over Richmond trying to find a COVID test.  We ended up having to come home the next day, just so I could get a COVID test at the local hospital.  Thankfully I was negative.

The next week was Thanksgiving.  We came down to Richmond again.  We spent the night with Nani and Nanu, and then for Thanksgiving day, we headed to Auntie Anjuanette and Uncle Kashiff’s house.  It was so great to see them, I think we haven’t seen everyone since before COVID hit.  Grandma was there, Phelix, Auntie Carmen, Uncle Eric.  And of course Mekhai and Jayden were there.  And you got to meet Uncle Eric’s dog, Blue.  What a sweet pittbull.  The day was great, but we were all sad to leave that night.  We wanted to keep the trip short and minimize any risk.  So back to Winchester we went.

And now the countdown to Christmas starts.

Dear Asha,

Things haven’t changed much for you.  We do pre-school/kindergarten work with you.  We color, try to practice our letters.  You are reading a lot of beginner books, like those BOB books.  You are so smart.  We still see Ms Mary, she is a pretty awesome pre-k teacher/tutor.  Otherwise, you’re just tagging along Ariya’s learning, watching science videos, learning about plants and cells, etc.  I signed you up for Epic and we started playing games online through ABC-ya.  I think you feel good about that, doing the same things that Ariya does.  You never want to be left out.  The problem is always that when you have too much screen time, the meltdowns increase.  So, it’s all about always trying to find that balance.

Dear Anika,

Not much has changed from last month.  You’re still crawling, still walking on your knees,  still kinda walking.  You always want to hold our hands, but you don’t walk by yourself much as well.

When we went down to Richmond, you got to spend a lot of quality time with Nani and Nanu, which was nice.  You got to explore their house and played with them, and they loved it.  Ariya and Asha loved playing with my old toys and you did too.

You also got to see Grandma and all of your cousins and aunties and uncles for Thanksgiving.  I think because you’re so used to not seeing people during this pandemic, that it’s been weird for you.  You are definitely more cautious and take more time warming up to people.  Your uncle’s dog was dying to lick your face and you were definitely not a fan of that!  But it was a great visit, seeing all of our family, especially in times like these.  It may not have been the smartest thing to do during this pandemic, but thankfully we are all safe.

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