Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Been a LONG time

Four months later... sheesh!

When I disappear for awhile, it's safe to say that stuff is happening.  Sometimes that stuff takes up all my attention and patience, and blogging has to take a back burner. This was one of those times.

We're still homeschooling though, in the midst of a whirlwind of trials.  When everything else is going haywire, homeschooling is the one constant.  I think we might be getting pretty good at it.

Where did I leave off four months ago?  Oh yes, February, and my broken nose!  That was a crazy time.  It's healed now.  Thanks so much for all the well wishes.  You all know how to a make a mama smile through the pain.

At the tail end of the broken nose ordeal, all hell broke loose.  Events happened.  I don't know that I can say more than that at this time, though I'm sure to touch on it in the future.  Needless to say, said events catapulted Moonshine into the thick, murky waters of the nine-year-change.  Nurturing Moonshine through this change has been an entirely different experience than what we had with Sunburst.  Much harder.  Much more volatile.  More tears than I can possibly count, and with good reason.  It's hard to wake up and realize that the world isn't as nice as you thought.

She's good now.  We're through the thick of it, at least.  Other life changes are simmering, big ones, so I'm sure we'll see more fun times ahead as she finds her equilibrium.  Thank goodness we're homeschooling!

Perhaps one of the greatest attributes of Waldorf homeschooling is being able to greet each individual child's stages of growth with curriculum.  Not at a random moment within a given school year because their age dictates it, but exactly when they'll benefit from it the most.  And that's what we've been doing this spring-- Old Testament stories.  Nothing says wake up and smell the nine-year-change like the banishment from the garden of Eden, the death of Abel, and so on.

Meanwhile, Sunburst has been living and breathing everything Rome.  The brutality and betrayal within Roman history has made for an interesting counterpoint as Sunburst watches her little sister move through such a strong undercurrent.  I didn't expect that, and I certainly didn't plan for it.  But the timing was perfect!  There are much greater lessons to be learned from history than just dates and facts.

We've done other things here and there, as well.  Kitty Bill is playing t-ball and loving it!  Moonshine is enjoying cursive handwriting and housebuilding, and as always, math.  Sunburst thinks her geology/mineralogy block is the best thing yet-- and that also comes at just the right time, because we're facing another huge upheaval.

Our job here in Switzerland is ending early.  We learned about the possibility this spring, and it has been looming and growing ever closer until the possibility has become a certainty.

Einstein's boss has been offered a prestigious position, the top of his field, at a fat cat research facility in Berlin.  He has invited Einstein to come along.  It's a lucrative job, a huge career move... and yet, it's Germany... where homeschooling is illegal.  I'm not at liberties to say much more than this, but I know that other homeschoolers can understand how the mere idea wrenches our hearts.  And thus, Einstein has been actively pursuing other options for us.

He has been away more often than he has been home, and that has been a strain on all of us.  He has been flying all over the world interviewing for jobs, attending meetings, conferences, writing books...  Finding a job in this economy is tough.  Finding a good job, a perfect job, a job that pays enough to keep the kids out of school where they belong... that's even tougher.  But we think we've found one.  Unfortunately, it's not back home.  This tears the kids up, but there are no positions to be had in the US right now.

Hopefully we'll have definitive news by the end of this week, just in time for summer holidays to kick in.  Between you and me, I'm looking forward to a few days of respite from all the stress and worries of reality.

Oh, and special thanks to those of you who have been emailing me, prodding me, to get back up on my blogging horse.  I appreciate your kind words, and I'll do my best to stay astride.  Hopefully I'll be back in the next few days to share some visuals.

Thanks for sticking with me.


  1. Anonymous10:55 AM

    Hooray! You're back! q

  2. Hi Sarah
    Just wanted to inform you that for foreigners the possibility of homeschooling is accepted in Germany, as long as you plan to move back to your country or to another country. It doesn't matter if you stay for several years, though.
    Sorry, hope not to mess your plans.

  3. Here might be somebody you could help you: She's also in Germany and homeschooling her kids.

  4. Thanks, CCETSI. Homeschooling is definitely a legal option for US military families living overseas. They are quite lucky in this respect!!

    From what we can tell, including our correspondence with a lawyer in Germany, that is the only exception. Unfortunately, we are not a US military family, so we would have to abide by normal German laws... or homeschool in secrecy (some Germans do this!) Or commute the one hour from Poland, barring we could get permission to homeschool in Poland. Ha!

    I haven't found any US homeschoolers there yet, though I recently read that our US military will become more prominent there in the near future, so it's bound to happen. Again, those families will be under US law though, and not Polish law.

  5. So glad you are back and so sorry there in upheaval in your life. I hope your trials turn to blessings. :)

  6. Thanks, Shonda. I hope so, too!!

  7. I'm so glad to see you blogging again. Thank you for sharing some of your life, best of luck with ALL the things you need some luck with :)

  8. Thanks for the luck, Alyss. I sure appreciate it!

  9. It is lovely to see you back and to hear from you again!

  10. Cathy9:29 PM

    Hi Sarah,
    It's lovely to hear from you, I do hope that life unfolds so that you can continue homeschooling in a great place. Change is hard. I know in your shoes I would feel equally torn and not wanting to give up homeschooling.

    I am very interested in the 9 year change and there is regular debate in the Waldorf community about what age children should start grade one, and therefore at what age they should be in grade 3 hearing OT stories. It sounds like you found them very beneficial to use, and therefore the timing is very important. Would you mind sharing how old Moonshine was when it began? It sounds like, from what you have written, that life events seemed to "trigger" the 9 year change. Does that mean it seemed premature, or unexpected?

    I hope you (and Moonshine) don't mind me prying in this way. I respect your privacy and understand if this is something you don't want to go into detail about.

    And welcome back, I missed you.

  11. Aw, thanks Baleboosteh.

  12. Cathy, thanks so much for the kind words.

    I have A LOT to say on the subject of first grade readiness, 9 year change, and emotional maturity altogether. I could go on and on... perhaps I will make a post about it soon.

    For now, let me just say that the events that triggered it (and yes, I do think it can be triggered, or hurried, by outside forces) began when she was 8 yrs 7 months and undeniably exploded about 3 months later.

    It was completely unexpected. I had her doing mostly 2nd grade work at the time because emotionally, and even physically, she was still very much in the 2nd grade world. And that was totally fine with both of us.

    I believe it was premature because there were no warning signs. With Sunburst, the change came late. It was milder, as well, but there were small changes that preceded it. I could see it coming, and I didn't feel she was ready for the OT stories until she was almost 10. That seemed perfect for her.

    With Moonshine, we started them just before she turned nine. Given the circumstances, they were very cathartic. They helped her heal emotionally, and she's been able to move on from it. Now we only have the normal nine year stuff to deal with... which by comparison, is much more tame, much more like what we experienced with Sunburst.

    Does that make sense?

  13. Thanks for responding, Sara. From what you've said about your experience I'm guessing you would suggest that children should be nine, or very close to it, when they begin the OT stories, is that right?

    It's great that you were all prepared to move into that with Moonshine when she needed it. As you say in your post, you're getting good at this homeschooling thing!

    I would love a post from you on first grade readiness, the nine year change and emotional maturity. I look forward to you going on and on about this subject!

  14. I hang my head in shame for not emailing you in the past couple of months like I kept thinking I should. May is understandable as my sister was visiting me and we were having fun and bring productive...but June is nearly gone and I just have no excuse aside from the usual excuses.

    It's one thing I do miss after closing my Facebook acount: I can't as easily keep tabs on my friends.

    I'm sad that there are no jobs in the US for Einstein. But I hope that you'll be happy wherever you may be going. And I plan to email you by this weekend. xo

  15. Cathy, I think I would just say they should be ready. The OT stories fill a specific need-- to help a child process a change in consciousness, and I think it's more dependent upon the presence of that need than an age requirement. I imagine in worse circumstances, a child could have that need at a much earlier age than 9. In a normal range of experience, a child raised within anthroposophic ideals would more naturally approach that change in consciousness around the age of 9 or 10. But of course, every child is different.

    Ideally, I would say the later the better, but reality doesn't always conform to what's ideal... no matter how much I plead with it. ;)

  16. Teresa, I miss you. Thanks for the well wishes, dear friend. xo

  17. So good to read how you are. I have missed you too and wish you well with all the changes your family face.

  18. I am so very glad that you are back. Your words were most definitely missed.

  19. Thanks so much, Kelly! I look forward to catching up with your blog... I fear I've missed so much!

  20. Thanks so much for the kind words, Sara.


Thank you for taking the time to leave a message. I appreciate your sweet words so much!

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