13 Miles of AwesomePosted: March 31, 2014
Today was the kind of day that really sells homeschooling, especially the ‘unschooling’ I lean towards. Normally, Mondays are errand day. By the time we buy groceries for the week, get home and have lunch, we’re lucky to get an hour or two of mediocre school time in. The weather today is warm, not terribly sunny, but definitely sunny enough to enjoy being outdoors – a stark contrast to the colder temperatures for the rest of the week.
So we called an audible and went to the zoo. As a parent, I was unusually on top of my game today and decided to go whole hog: pack a lunch, a snack, and make a day of it. We hopped into the human-powered minivan and started biking at 1000 and didn’t get done with the zoo and home until 1445. The girls are starting to get to the point where they ask to stop and read the signs – a great sign, since the transition from learning to read and reading to learn is a critical one. All three goblins recognized animals from the Planet Earth series we’re working through, and Gia (my middle daughter) asked specifically to see the caribou after the really cool migration videos.
Biking the indirect way to avoid hills and heavy traffic resulted in a 13 mile roundtrip, but my body is getting used to the heavy weight and I’m learning how to gear for hills and such. The route stays on a MUT most of the way, so it’s scenic and relatively quiet. All around us at the zoo were families with giant strollers and other crazy things only possible to have with a car to port it around. If we have a fourth baby, it’ll be interesting to see whether I can avoid the trappings of conventional parenthood, because biking everywhere is AWESOME. It’s not free, but it’s pretty damn close.
Part of today also involved a combined ethics/environmental/personal finance lesson about why we pack our lunches (sandwiches of varying flavors and freshly popped popcorn) instead of buying overpriced junk food. Both of my girls are starting to understand the concept of being wasteful, why that’s bad, and what Mommy and Daddy are working towards (early retirement).
Between the nice bike ride, the really relaxing and educational trip to the zoo, and progress on a few high-level conceptual fronts, today was an awesome day!