Homeschool at Home?

How is this school year slipping by us so quickly?

Time is fleeting and our family unit has grown strong. We have all flourished with our new school setup, moving locations and most of all in that we are learning and adventuring together.

In the course of the last month, Tony flew to the Caribbean for three weeks of quality maxi-yacht racing in Virgin Gorda and St. Barths while I flew to Newport with the kids. We adventure-schooled at HOME, saw many friends and both enjoyed and endured some crazy-cold weather which grappled our beloved New England town. COLD. Snowy, windy, …freezing COLD!  What mother nature laid upon Rhode Island this year was a winter marvel. It was equal parts apropos, and a slight bummer that we missed most of it.

… ok, who am I kidding. We chose a good winter to spend South.

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We arrived home to yet another of many winter snow storms. The house, yard, streets covered in pure white snow were so beautiful and stark in comparison the the tropical colors of our Cortado life.

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Reality check:  Coming home was like going on a “winter vacation”. We loved the snow, the sledding, playing, building of snowmen… a total treat for us. Snow is fun when you don’t have to live through the prolonged inconveniences of a long, hard winter.

When we first started our Adventure School, I was very uncomfortable homeschooling from home. I found it too distracting, and being home provided the kids daily reminders of what they were missing in the classroom up the road.  Over the course of the year I have become more at ease with our school and daily schedule.  Now I feel I can teach anywhere.

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ANOTHER reality check: I love school at home now. It is nice to be able to “spread out” and really take a look at all we have been doing. We are half-way through our “50 states project” and will work hard in these last two months of school to finish. The kids are continuing on with all their subjects and Sophia received some extra math tutoring.  Our school room at home is cozy but not quite insulated enough for winter, which encouraged us to make use of every open available space in the house. We developed a routine of going to the public library every Wednesday in order to do extra research on topics of interest, or choose free-reading books. We are continuing with our Anthologies of Poetry and reading/writing poetry almost daily this spring.  With the completion of our first school year in site, I have tremendous confidence in myself, now that I see how very much the kids learned, how much they applied themselves and all we were able to accomplish.

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Though I missed a lot of the winter group reads, I was not going to miss George Elliot. So for the first time in seven months, I was able to host my book group.  This was also much-needed time with my girlfriends.  We are half-way through Middlemarch by George Elliot. So how appropriate to meet in the middle of March, to discuss the middle of Middlemarch!  (…too clever?)  It is a beautiful work of literature.

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Playdates are critical when we are home. The kids have some fabulous friends here and the relationships are as solid as ever.

20150321_150033  Oliver prepares for spring baseball OYO-lego-style.

In early March we took a well-deserved “Spring Break” from school and flew back to Miami. We met Tony at the boat for our last hurrah on Cortado for the spring.  This was a bit of an emotional time, as we knew we were at the end of our semi-planned, thoroughly successful, adventure-school year.

We spent a full week in the keys using Miami as our base and anchored out in some new locations, including a gorgeous night at Stadium Harbor. We have grown to love Miami and the Coconut Grove section of town in particular.  [note: We are starting to talk about doing this again…]
20150326_18305720150326_203722We met up with friends in South Beach. Playing in the surf, followed by outstanding Cuban fare at Puerto Sagua. By the end of March, we began to cruise in reverse-order, re-visiting marinas and towns that we enjoyed last fall when we launched our Florida cruising adventure. We loved the trip down the Inter-coastal Waterway from Jacksonville to Miami, so we are looking forward to repeating it.  However, knowing we will also have to pack up and put the Cortado away for the summer, makes for days of bittersweet treasure.

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Sophia and Oliver waving goodbye to the Grove and Miami skyline as we head north to the land of gigantic cruise ships of Fort Lauderdale.

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Lovely Vivian resting on the flybridge: “Home is Wherever You are.”

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