Our time together from noon onwards was quite sweet. The highlight of our day was the discovery of a homeschooling co-op, which a friend mentioned to me earlier in the week and I wasted little time contacting. The group meets weekly, has children that are around our children's ages, and appears to have embraced similar values as us.
We worked through our morning chores at varying paces, sat down for an early lunch, then hopped on our bikes and pedaled downtown. The group meets at the park or library downtown during the summer months, depending on the weather. I felt considerably less vulnerable to the judgment of others then I did even a short week ago as we walked to the park, even when I noticed one person do a double take at my children running ahead of me. That in itself was spirit-lifting.
And the group itself was very welcoming. It was a low-key, relaxed get-together, where the children spent time playing, followed by show-and-tell, and finishing with a little more play. There was time for a very welcome visit with other adults! My family wound down the trip with a walk and visit to the library, where we could pick up more Asterix, the first book in the next series by Kathryn Lasky, and the next title in the Anne of Green Gables series. We came back with slightly tired bodies, minds ready to drink up those books, and happy spirits.
I noticed things about my children during our time with the group, too. Like that my son is still much more comfortable talking to adults than children his own age. That my daughter was quite comfortable speaking about the item she brought for show and tell - she spoke so earnestly and passionately about her creation. That our youngest was comfortable wandering off on her own to the slide she loves so much.
And I marveled at the wonderful children we met. Some would patiently wait for the circle to be silent before starting to give hints about what they brought to share. Some siblings had a dynamic that was remarkably similar to what I see at home, and further convinced me that there are just some things that can only be explained by birth order. Many were quite comfortable sharing with the group.
Thanks, Mamas! I'm looking forward to next Wednesday already!