I am pleased to say that the stress of exams (IGCSE's) is now a distant memory. My darling daughter has survived and more to the point, so have her siblings and I!
It struck me the other day that actually the completion of these exams marks the end of our Home ed journey. My first guinea pig has crossed the line and survived unscathed (I like to think), the experiment of an education far from the norm. In September my beautiful and talented daughter will take her next step in the world towards her future career. As yet she is still undecided as to exactly what that next step will be (A levels or a vocational course at college). She is excited about the freedom and new skills she will gain and the fresh opportunities that she will be faced with.
Eleven years of home education has been a huge amount of fun. Of course there have been some ups and downs (more ups than downs thankfully!) it has been an amazing journey and one that in hindsight, I am eternally grateful that I took. It was a path unknown, a path barely trodden that over the past decade has become a true lifesaver and real option to so many. The home ed community is more than just a gathering of add balls, it's a family of people who share similar values and many differences. It's a real choice for those who for whatever reason decide that 'the system' is not for them. It's a fun existence, an existence of real courage and determination.
We were sitting out having a picnic along side a gated road earlier this week; a gathering of five families. We sheltered under the shade of the trees chatting, laughing and making merry whilst our young people happily created their own adventures of life in the wilds of the British countryside; paddling in the stream, catching crayfish, smothering each other in mud whilst reinforcing friendships and socialising. Two children came back that night to stay over; a house full of children, just how it should be. Sometimes sleepovers can be riots but this one worked well, it was peaceful and joyous. The boys took to the sofas whilst the girls slept out under the stars on the trampoline. They're so lucky to be able to live as children have in years gone by.
So as summer rolls into being we are enjoying the long lazy days. Work seems to rapidly be grinding to a halt; it seems silly not to take full advantage of the glorious weather that we have seen this week. Plans for short camping trips are in the pot. No long expeditions this year!
With talk of guinea pigs, I should finish with an introduction to our latest family addition. Meet April....
The little Lady has wanted piggies for the past two years or so and finally we have one. Little April is just 8 weeks old and came from a litter of three. Piggies are sociable creatures so we are hoping to find her a friend really soon but for now she is enjoying cuddles all around!