Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A Homeschool Favorite

Ask any school-aged child what their favorite part of school is and you are bound to hear field trips!  When Olivia was in Kindergarten (public school) she waited, not so patiently, for an entire year to go on one field trip the last month of school.  The icing?  Riding on the big yellow bus.  So, I decided about a month ago to put my mommy armor on and brave the field trip world of homeschool.  We went on one or two trips last year, which was a failure in my dear daughters eyes.  She was 7.  The whole 1 parent, 3 kids thing a.) didn't matter to her and b.) annoyed her (details).  I am part of a great co-op that has several great leaders who plan lots of events.  I am so thankful for them and the experience I had with all three of my girls on these days.  In these moments all of the tears, hard days, and frustrations drift away and I am reminded what a wonderful journey we are on and how grateful I am to have these moments with my children.  Memories.  That is what we are doing.

Green Cedars Farm - Molino, Florida

More than a hours commute from our home, we enjoyed a beautiful drive to this sweet farm after turning off of the busy highway and turning onto a two-lane road that meandered past unpicked cotton fields drifting as far as the eye could see.  Not much traffic in those parts, and everyone throws their hand up at you when you pass.  Oh, how I could live here forever.

After all of the families arrived and plenty attention had been given to the mama sow, nursing way too many babies at once, The Farmer lined us up and the tour officially began. 

I love this.  The young and the old and the stories each tells.  How is it babies of any kind are always met with sweetness and gentleness and somehow kids of all ages just understand?  To see my sweet Allye put her small pointer finger on the top of their little heads and smooth that fur toward their still my heart.

This might have been the best surprise of the day.  This beauty came prancing out and the kids went wild.  Roaming freely...what a sight.

The kids were a little concerned about the bunny's red eyes.  Apparently that is quite normal with domesticated bunnies.  Touch and feel and ooh and aah was the order of the day.  Thankfully those were not for pets ;)

Our tour included a hay ride, pulled by The Farmer's tractor.  There wasn't a frown to be found.  This was so exciting for all of us.  He drove the entire farm and would stop and teach along the way.  First, we met his turkeys.  Unfortunately many of them are probably not living with him anymore.  Tis the season.

We had a wonderful day spent with new friends, enjoying new adventures, and learning so much.  We ended this adventure with a picnic lunch on the farm and The Farmer making silly faces to help this Mama get a picture of her girls.


Camp Victory - Samson, Alabama

We followed up our farm trip, a week later, with a visit to Camp Victory in Alabama.  Different state, really not so far.  After a long winding drive just outside of the closest town to Camp, we turned onto a dirt road where I had the photography vapors over the cutest country church ever.  It was all I could do to not pull over, unload my kids, and start capturing some memories.  I had no idea what was just around the corner.  I was most definitely rewarded for good behavior.

We arrived rather early and had ample time to take it all in and enjoy some of the surroundings that had me mentally signing up for everything they offered for the next year, just so I could come back again and again and again.  

I had to show them how this game worked.  They were totally impressed I knew how to play.  I let them think I was hip...not old...the real reason I knew how to play said game.

I love the timelessness of the tire swing.

The theme for the day was archery.  Allye insisted on meeting the targets animal visitors.  After a morning of presentations about archery and hunting, the girls got some hands on experience with the archery equipment and free reign to enjoy the additional offerings at Camp.

Swingin' as high as you can.

Paddle boats with the babes.

My big girl got her very own kayak.

Mini golf with Allye.  She has her own set of rules.
I was beyond thrilled with our time together at Camp Victory.  I am so excited to return in the Spring and enjoy this place again.  What wonderful memories we created and so many firsts.  The girls got to enjoy this day with their friends and I got to enjoy them.  It is such a blessing to be with them daily and watch them enjoying life and learning along the way.  I have no other place I would rather be.  I am so glad I showed up. I am having a ball.

---The Homeschool Mama

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