Thursday, January 26, 2006

Trip around the world

Our 4H group had an international feast today. We heard presentations and sampled food from about 12 different countries. Evie made continent signs and she and a friend put them up around the room before everyone got there so everything was arranged by continent. She enthusiastically volunteered to be first and said a lot about Zimbabwe. She isn't usually too comfortable speaking in public so I was surprised she was so enthusiatic. All the food was wonderful especially the tempeh someone brought to represent Indonesia. It made me uncomfortable to watch some of the parents try to coerce or shame their kids into speaking--sometimes really little ones! I was also really puzzled by the way some parents interacted with their kids. The two and three year old younger siblings were not very interested in the presentations so were amusing themselves as best they could in an unfamiliar space. Parents focused more attention on the kids giving presentations than on the little ones who really needed the attention. I saw one mom angrily grab her little boy and give him a "time out" for running around. This is 4H group of all homeschoolers, mixed ages. It is an amazing group. I often make the mistake of thinking that just because someone homeschools, they automatically parent the way we do.

People often ask me "how do you get Evie to behave so well?" I always want to say "what kind of question is that?" A neighbor of ours was shocked a few years ago to learn that we didn't spank, ground, use "time outs" or punish in any way. How do I make myself "behave" every day? How do I make my husband "behave" every day? We live rightly with each other, we respect each other, we listen to each other, we don't ask for or expect stupid, arbitrary unfair behavior from each other!

Evie and I played outside for a long time this afternoon: rollerblading, scootering, frisbee, baseball. She watched Carmen Sandiego and dressed up as Wonder Woman, we read "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and she went off to find friends.

Tonight we will watch "Dancing with the Stars" and eat pizza--Scott's specialty!

A day well lived!

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