Day 20: Higher Education, for free!

Today I was listening to a podcast on TED about creativity and children and how to stimulate that process within them. I listen to TED a bit because of the short talks on profound subjects like education, science or technology and ideas shaping culture. It’s very inspiring. I then walked to the kitchen to retrieve my copy of Ode magazine which borders on similar subject matter as TED yet it’s rather diverse. Most of the speakers for TED have higher learning degrees and most people they interview for Ode are your neighbors with names like Doug or Jan. For some reason people with degrees prefer to go by Douglas or Janice.

When the kids nap during the day I often listen to a podcast while I do a bit of at home yoga or I read something in the short window of uninterrupted opportunity. I’m finding that I am learning more and receiving more education than I have in a long time. I’m certainly learning more than I did when I was in high school, but that’s another story. It’s hard to learn in school with you aren’t interested in ANYTHING!

Now, I’m no expert on any subject except the subject of raising a highly energetic, spunky, at times annoying, yet incredibly bright four year old boy. I will have to take credit for learning almost everything on the subject of ‘the difficult child’ and how to nurture their little spirits so as not to break them in two. But this may be my only expertise and even then, he’s only four for another six months….they just keep changing! But I see how I”m learning more about politics, public health, writing, Nelson Mandela and the history of apartheid, what type of race cars go ‘really, really fast’ and other subjects that are covered on the NPR international news hour. I’m being educated at home, for free!

I guess this is my season of being at home with wee ones during the day, not having the time to go back to school or work and not always being able to meet up with friends on short notice. But this has been an amazing season of self directed study. I take my kids to the library at least once a week to get books for them (Chloe wants to read about princess dresses and Oliver wants to read about bugs and cars) but I feel like being in the library is crack for me as I walk through the aisles. Sometimes I check out four books at a time, even though I can’t read them all at once. I’m addicted to learning and it’s amazing that I have resources all around me. There’s no teacher chiding me for not raising my hand and Bubba won’t be copying off my paper during finals week. Finals week! Ugh! So glad I don’t have to deal with that right now. Sorry Danielle and David!

I’m thankful for this season of life (even if I’m simultaneously anxious at times) where my mind is getting the food it needs. My brain candy today has been a child’s book on Poems about George Washington Carver, a TED podcast on the creative process in writing and my new friend who has spent a lot of time in my bathroom, Ode!

What are you thankful for?

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