Our School Room

Today I thought I would share our school room with you all as back to school is soon approaching here in Ontario. I deicided to dedicate an area for a school room back when schools were shut down due to Covid-19 and online learning started in April 2020.

At the begining of online learning, we did first start off just on our kitchen table. A day or two later I quickly realized it was not going to work. With our family room right next to our eat in kitchen, with snacks, and lunch breaks, we were always having to move things and then to setup all over again. Also, with having four kids ages 17 years old and younger there were different distractions. I quickly came up with a solution, I deicided to turn our home office (which is a pretty good size) into office/homeschool room. Budget friendly was also in mind when I thought about it, so I took a look at the space and then went shopping in my basement. I took a folding table and chairs, that we use for parties & large gatherings (which clearing we aren’t and wont be using for a while) and I also had on hand one plastic container with drawers. I used a party plastic table cover (from the dollarstore) to cover the table which is perfect and easy to change/clean.
I, then went thru our craft bin and picked out things we can use. After collecting what I had, we put the room together and made note of things I can pick up to add to our room.
I always have a homework bin stored in our main closet with extra school supplies which I refill every August or/& thru out the year as needed so we always have extra for those “in case” things got left at school or for projects that come up. Once I knew what I wanted/needed I took a quick trip to Dollar Tree where I picked up a map of Canada to add to our wall. I got some poster boards I could use for words of the week, days of the week, certain information provided by their teachers for easly finding, etc… I also picked up some extra popicle sticks, clay, wooden cubes, and a weekly calendar (dry ease) so we could write their schedule for the week as the teachers provided it.

Some great sources I used; Pinterest to find some fun activities for them to do and I also saved some learning activities in case I felt they weren’t getting enough from online or simply to change up the way they learned. Though out the online learning I also pinned some great learning material in the subject or area they needed help with. YouTube videos also helped with learning. I would just search and find a kid friendly video example: long division grade 4 for kids. Youtube was also a great pick for kids dance, exercises, kids yoga, etc… and lots of learning videos on whatever you need.

When the girls saw the room complete, they were so excited and it helped them gain a more positive look on doing school from home. They also loved seeing their work on the wall as we went on. A great tip I learned, use painter’s tape to hang these temporary things, they come off so easily and does not peel off the paint on the wall.

I will admit it, we did have our days, it was not always clean and simply. I did learn to accept that it won’t be perfect and we won’t always have great days, but it’s ok and we will get thru it and I too will learn more in areas I myself needed to grow in, in order to better help them. It took a lot of patience some days, there were also days I felt like I couldn’t keep up. In the end everything worked out and we got thru it.

With our current situation here in Ontario, we are in the middle of the hardest decision, to send our kids to school or not to. Which ever you choose I do not judge, this is a hard deicison for parents to make. Every person/families have different situtions, and opinions which should be respected by all.

I personally have decided not to send back any of my four kids back to school this September, we will be doing the online learning. I don’t feel comfortable with sending them and with everything you hear on the news, social meadia, I don’t know how much to believe or not to anymore in all honestly. No one knows enough on this virus and so therefore I deicided to not send them. I also feel that the government is rushing back the return of schools without having things in place. In my opinion, the government knew September would be coming and they should of started putting plans into place and getting schools and teachers ready. Instead they waited and are rushing to get things done, promising to implement things that take more then 3 weeks to do.

There’s things that confuse me, just like we are not allowed to have an outdoor birthday party 10-15 kids, but you can have 20+ kids in a classroom with a not so great ventilation system, where social distancing can not happen, and wearing masks for some but not all. Plus, I think 6 hours with a mask is a lot. I wear mine with simple errands and as soon as I walk out I am so happy to take it off.
Too many do this and not that, then ok you can do this and that in other situtions, you know what I mean? Also, there will be so many changes and restrictions that school will not be the same. Even tho I would love to send them to be with their friends, regular learning, fun times/events, etc… I feel it wont be. I know as well that online learning wont be all fun and games (as I know from earlier this year), but I will try my hardest to help them in any way and try to make the best of it.

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Thankfully I am able to make this deicison because I am home and can help them when needed, more for my younger ones. I will send them back once I am comfortable with it. I am just sharing what we will be doing, not saying at all it is the right way. We as parents want the very best for our children. Every parent as the right to make their deicison without judegment.

Are you sending your kids back to school or will you be doing homeschool/online learning? Do you have helpful resources to share or tips? Or if you would like to share your home school room, comment below.

Have you read my previous post? Can you relate?

Covid-19 Emotions& Struggles

Hello my friends,

It’s been a while since I have posted on the blog, I hope this post finds you well. I have to admit that my moods have been up and down. I thought I would share some of my struggles and my emotional rollercoaster during this time. There is no right or wrong way on how we are dealing with life right now, everyone’s decision on what they do is what is right for them and their family.

In the beginning of all this, (back in March & beginning of April) I thought I was ok, but as we got more into April, l  realized I was a mess. Consuming way too much news and social media regarding Covid-19. It was affecting my mental health, having a hard time sleeping, and not wanting to do much other then what needed to be done for my family. Anyone else go thru it? I do suffer from Anxiety, which I believe made it easy for me to fall in this hole. I know there are much worse types of Anxiety out there, but just sharing mine. It felt that once Covid hit, so much more happened in our world that is very emotional changeling, we also became aware of so much more, and wanting to learn about it all. That can take a toll on our mental health, so much devastating news on top of a Global Pandemic.

 Once I realized how this was really affecting me, I decided to limit all news (social media & tv) to once a day, usually being around later in the mornings or late afternoon. I started filling up my day with things that took up my time and made me tired so I could get some kind of back to normal sleep. Yup, I started deep cleaning areas that I never had time for, organizing, and looking for new recipes, etc.. on top of trying to keep the kids entertained safe at home.  It took a few days, but it worked and just getting more sleep helped a whole lot. Once that came into place I was able to come up with a new routine and planning more fun things we could do at home and in our neighbourhood. Now, being honest here, we don’t always follow our routine or go by it 100%, but it did help with getting some normal back into our lives. I also experience days were I have it all together and do not feel the impact and then all of a sudden I am not on my game anymore and have those blah day(s) and that’s ok. It’s ok to slow down and let our bodies feel all emotions, get it all out and then get back up again. 

 In realizing that I was not the same person and losing interest in all regular things made me not want to continue in that path. I was feeling miserable no matter what I did. I knew I needed to take control before I couldn’t or get too lost in it where the problem controls you. Don’t get me wrong, everything isn’t great and smooth sailing everyday, but it has improved so much. It was a lot to handle and it was completely normal to go thru these feelings and moods. I do have these nights every so often where I am so tired but can’t sleep, of course with everything happening in the world, not just with Covid-19, also the unknown of things at times,  it is completely normal for that to happen. That fog brain feeling was the worst, couldn’t focus on things, feeling drained, etc… I am glad that I was able to make it happen less. I say less because yes it does happen here and there but at least it wasn’t going on for many days and very often. Did you get fog brain?

Just in case you think I have it all together, I am here to share I don’t. Some days are great and we go with the routine, other days are just go with the flow. I am totally off my blog content game. When I launched this year, I had so many great ideas, events, and content, and was all in.  Then Covid hit and everything was put on hold. I had to work, be a teacher, and everything else. It was a lot and I had to slow down on something. From all this I have learned it’s ok to fall off the line and that we are all in this together. It’s ok to think of the unknown, but to not let it consume my day. Many people that I have come in contacted with on Instagram dm’s or in person are going thru similar up and downs. This is a time for us to deal with each situation as best we can and allow us to step back too. We can plan our days, but we need to know it’s ok if the day doesn’t go as planned or if we end up doing nothing at all. We also need to support each other’s ways or the path others are taking. Everyone is dealing with this the best way they know how and no one’s ways are the same, each family knows what is best for them and their families.

As I wrap this up, I would like you to know if you need to talk to someone I am here. Please feel free to reach out to me by contacting me at ishosandy@gmail.com 

We are all in this together and we will all make it out together. 

Be kind to everyone, you never know what battle they are struggling with.

If you would like to share how this difficult time has been effecting you, or would like to share fun ideas to do during this time I would love to hear them, comment below.

My Reset Sunday Routine

There’s nothing like having a routine in place. Routines are not just for kids, we adults need them too.

I knew I needed to come up with a routine that would help me get the new week started off right. Normally on Monday’s I do not go into the office, I was finding that I was doing a lot of house things on that day to reset for the week, which took up most of my day leaving me little time to get my other work things done. So I came up with this idea of doing it on Sunday’s, not only is it working Monday’s are now very productive in the ways I want it to be.

I thought I would share my routine with you and maybe you too would find it helpful to put one in place or inspire you to create your own and select the day that it would best work for you.

I take it easy in the mornings unless we have plans that afternoon. I get the kids breakfast ready, get a load in the washer. I like to drink & enjoy my coffee while I get on making a “To Do” list. I normally have already deep cleaned my house on Friday &/or Saturday so everything on my list is just to put the house back together from the weekend and get things prepared for the week.

Main Floor:

-Clean kitchen
-Go thru the fridge
-Make a grocery list
-Get the kids to go thru their backpacks, clean it out and organize it for the week
-Check their agendas & sign if I haven’t ready
-Insure homework is done
-Get any laundry still left to do, done
-Get anything that’s out of place back to where they belong
-Quick tidy of all rooms
-Quick check on the main hallway closet to insure kids things for school are all where the belong (for a smooth morning)
-Vacuum & a quick mop of the floors

Upstairs:

-Make all the beds
-Pick out the girls clothes for Monday morning
-Put away any clean laundry
-Quick clean & tidy of bathrooms
-Empty all the bathroom garbages
-Quick vacuum

Other things I like to do:

-Get the girls water bottles filled and in the fridge
-If I can make their lunches for Monday I do so ( what I mean by if I can is sometimes they ask for a hot lunch to be made which then I will do in the morning) and get their snacks cut and packed.
-I pre-fill the coffee machine & set it to brew on a timer
-I also go thru calendars and my agenda and insure everything is to date and review what is upcoming for the week.

I swear by this routine that since I have figured out what I should I shouldn’t do helps me all week to stay on top of everything. I truly believe it sets me up for a peaceful mind especially on Monday mornings when we all wish it was still the weekend, lol. Now yes I still do things here and there during the week, but it helps so much to be less. Also, since I started needing more time to get my work done on Monday’s this routine has helped me with being able too and spending less evening time and/or staying up late to complete it. There are some Sunday’s where we are busy and I don’t have time to get it all done, but that’s where I pick my top must choices and get then done either early Sunday morning or in the evening and it still does help with having a setup for the week ahead.

Do you have a reset routine in place &/or a tip to share? Comment below.