Trust The Children

Sunday, October 02, 2005

It Just Feels So Right

There are certain things we do that are part of our home school experience, that, when we do them, send me a quiet but powerful message, that we are doing something WAY right. Cyndy is a field trip fanatic. Whether we are on a family trip, driving to the store, or actually going on a bonified field trip, at about 5 minute intervals we hear, "Oh look.... " or "See that? It's....". As the driver, I think she is warning me to avoid some disaster. So my blood pressure always gets a rise. In reality, for Cyndy, the entire world is a smorgasbord, perfect for her curiosity and low, way low in calories. Even though it is understandably irritating after a while, her enthusiasm and curiosity is infectious. (Once in a while, we get the "MOOOOOOM! Leave me alone. I just want to read.")

It wasn't too long ago, Sam and his brothers built a hover craft. "I wonder if we could build a hover craft?" was the question. Months of reading and hunting on the internet, and plans were eventually found. Scrounging wood from contractors building homes near us. I come home and they are floating down our hardwood floors taking turns as the vacuum cleaner is holding them off the floor. Then there was the time they built recurve bow and taught themselves archery.

About 6 months ago, after a Saturday Night church meeting, all the boys and I sat round a table at a local burger joint having milkshakes and french fries. I told them about my visits to Oshkosh Wisconsin for the Experimental Aircraft Association Air Show with their Grandfather and proffered the idea that perhaps we set a goal to go there as a group of 7 of us this summer. "What if we went there together...?" was the question. And now six months has passed. We did go. We stayed 4 days and still didn't get it all seen or done. On the 26 hour drive there and the 26 hour drive back, we talked about funny things, personal things, and spiritual things. We talked about memories and our hopes for what we would experience during the AirShow. At night we listened to the Tales of Sherlock Holmes for hours. And of course, we slept too. Again, going somewhere planted seeds and time nurtured them.

I need to get a picture of the flight simulator they have designed and are flying here at the house. We purchased X-Plane, because you can actually design planes on the program and they actually fly how you design them. We have a yoke and pedals too. I come home one day and they have dismantled the Joy-Stick I thought was an expensive one. They cut the wires from the base to the handle, extend the ball in the base with a long stick, re attach the control handle to the top of the stick and resolder wires just as they should be. So now when they fly, they have a stick between their knees just like they were flying a Piper J3 Cub. By the way, speaking of Piper Cubs....

To sum it up, this week we purchase a Piper Cub... in pieces. But before we bring that home, we build a workshop from scratch. The boys have been collecting wood for the uprights and soon we will make another 30 hour trip back to Illinois, where we will pick up the pieces of the J3 and bring them home in another 30 hour trip, talking planning scheming as we go. After that we will pour over the plans until we understand them, find a mentor to guide us along, purchase and tear down an engine and put it together again, again with the help of a mentor. Finally, finish building it, have an FAA inspector take it up for a ride, certify it. Then, I will get my tail-dragger certification on my Private license, and family members who are interested will do the same. The boys will get their Sport Pilot License.

All the time we are spending together, planning, researching, preparing, and of course dreaming feels so right to me. There is a joy in learning around here most of the time, but it is especially peaked right now. We will keep you informed. Can you feel the smile in each paragraph?


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