Is It Christmas Break Yet??
I love how some radio stations choose to play continuous Christmas music from Thanksgiving until Christmas day. It is so enjoyable to be able to turn on the car radio and sing along, often to a tune that truly celebrates the birth of our Savior! After Thanksgiving last year, my daughter and I were driving in the car together, running some errands. Of course, I flipped on the radio, hoping to hear a Christmas carol or some fun Charlie Brown jazz. But instead a Bing Crosby oldie was playing.
I absent-mindedly began thinking about which errand I needed to drive to first and got caught up in navigating among traffic. The car was quiet as my daughter was listening to the song. She suddenly said, “Hey Mom. That is totally different from our family.”
“What do you mean, honey?” I asked, finally paying attention to the radio.
She answered, “You don’t think like they do!” Of course, I had no idea what she was talking about, but I OFTEN don’t think like what is sputtered out of the radio these days, and yet, since I was not paying attention to the music, I began to focus on the soft crooning coming out of the speakers.
It was the song, It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas. I probably have heard that song dozens of times before, so I really didn’t understand what my daughter was talking about. She told me to listen for the refrain again. They were singing “…and Mom and Dad can hardly wait for school to start again, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…”
“There.” she said, “That part. You can wait for school to start again, can’t you?”
She was right. I had been looking forward to the Christmas school break as much as my kids were. We had all been busy through the fall, doing projects, working through math, traveling to play sports and piano. I was ready for a break. I was excited to be able to decorate our house with the kids, build gingerbread houses, bake some bread, go to the park, or meet with another family to play. In fact, the errands we were running that day included a trip to the craft store so we could do some fun activities.
I was enjoying the break. Having fun with my children. Frankly, the thought of school starting again did not bring instant joy to my heart (at least at that moment).
I began to think about the song lyrics again. Why were the “Mom and Dad” in the song so anxious for school to start again? I had heard that sentiment from my friends and neighbors who did not homeschool. They were fretting about what they were going to “do with the kids” and how to “keep them busy” during Christmas break. Once school would start after the holidays, they didn’t have to worry about keeping the kids occupied, and they could get on with their regular activities.
I began to smile. As a homeschooler, I realized that though it takes great effort to educate my children, I love it. I love being able to spend time together with them daily as we do our work. And when we have a school break, we then get to play together. But the operative word here is together. I realized that I don’t view my children as obstacles to the plans I may have in my day. My day is filled with being with them. Learning with them. Growing with them. God teaches them daily, and He teaches me daily.
So when we get a break from homeschooling, we are ALL excited. We ALL look forward to having some time off together. And though we all feel a little sad (well, sometimes more than a little sad), when the break is ending, we still get to be together, doing what God has for us that day.
I know that if my heavenly Father desires to be with me each day, then I am right to desire to be with my children each day. That is the blessing of homeschooling. And that is the joy we ALL have when it begins to look a lot like Christmas!