Sunday, December 2, 2012

Reflecting on 2012



 I would like to be someone who thinks about and reflects on the day/month/year gone by and learns from my reflections.  Mainly I forget to even remember to reflect, other times it is hard to take the time.  I tried to do some reflecting in December last year but wasn't in the right brain space at all.

A blogging friend recently posted about a month of prompted reflections - Reverb12 hosted by Kat at I saw you dancing.  One a day: you can write a blog post, get on twitter, or just reflect privately.   My preference is for the reflecting privately but I might pop by occasionally here and note my answer to a particular prompt.

This year has seen lots of small changes and some big ones, and as my youngest finishes kinder and heads off to school next year there are some more big changes about to happen, so a month of being prompted to think about different things sounds like a good thing to do.

The first prompt was: How are you starting?  And it made me realise that even though we are heading into  a very busy week/month ourselves, I'm relaxed, happy with where the year has gone and ready to face the challenges of the coming month in a way I have not been for the last 4 years.  So I'm happy and this is good.

The second prompt: Your most significant spend?  Now I thought this would be a hard one and then I realised it was actually an easy one.  I thought we hadn't done a lot of significant spending this year but there is one thing that I have not held back on the spending on.  Not to say we have spent exorbitant amounts of money but the purchase  has been ongoing and significant: books for the kids.  We get Scholastic book club brochures home from school and we are lucky to have the Scholastic Warehouse (direct sales at discount prices) nearby, so this year we have expanded the size of children's library of books significantly. It has had two major effects: the kids see that we value books and their reading skills have expanded dramatically.  With three boys in the house (aged 5, 7, 9) and a husband who confesses to not being a reader at all until after age 17, I had feared that our children, especially our second child,  would struggle with reading.  I grew up in a house where books were always around and important, we visited the local library every week/second week and borrowed numerous books that always were finished way before they were due to be returned.  I wanted that for my kids and we have always read to them and have at times been regular users of the local libraries.  Our eldest reads constantly (except when I send him outside to play!) and the same books get read multiple times, so having a library at home isn't a waste at all, it keeps him occupied!  The middle kid has clicked with reading this year in a way that brings great joy to my heart, he was ok at the beginning of the year (grade 1) but has come leaps and bounds during the course of the year, his teacher is so impressed, as am I!  Our youngest, who doesn't start school until next year is already reading very simple readers from school and picking up on the words written on things around him, sounding them out, putting a bit of effort in, getting frustrated but not giving up.  Seeing this happen over the course of the year I have been both apprehensive and proud.  Apprehensive because I want him to learn but not get too ahead of his peers, and proud because it has all been self directed, he wants to know so he asks questions, we answer them and he gathers knowledge and reading skills as well.

So there you go, Day 1 and Day 2 down, this might be a very interesting exercise!

PS If you sign up by 8pm tonight you can go into a draw to win a great prize :-)