Oh, my, I don't want to think about my kids driving just yet. Yikes.
We've been mostly enjoying this summer so far. The dry weather keeps the girls outside for a large chunk of the day. Indoors, they are on youtube, but it's downtime. They are not getting along well.
Fair is around the corner. Time for sprucing up the animals. They are trying cats this year, so we are now at chickens and rabbits and cats. Now I understand how older kids wind up staying at the fair from opening to closing every day. Neither girl is practicing as much. They are resting on their laurels, I'm afraid, and it showed in their public presentations, especially my exacting oldest's. Oh well. Some real competition is going to be good for her, who has received grand champion every year since she began, and for the big "round robin" award, she won GC 2 years out of three, and 1st place in the other. She needs to know what it feels like to have someone work at the same level she does-- and she wants that! As much as she likes the awards, she wants the pressure.
They are going to try school again this year. I think we'll be better able to handle it this time. My oldest gets to do sports, and she's going to try out cross country. I haven't told my youngest that placement for her is on hold until the district sees their numbers when school starts-- it's that close this year (we are enrolling out of district)
In this next month, I'll be trying to spend a little time evening out their math, spelling and punctuation (and penmanship-- it's that bad!) But I have the trouble of battling against, "but it's fine!" and I'm too much of an unschooling parent to pursue it. It's less an issue of breadth but depth and mastery. Oh well. We've talked about this year being the "sloppy copy"-- learning to do school and not minding grades too much. With some good support (and getting them to ask for it) all will be well.
I'm encouraged by a local unschooling mom whose youngest is graduating this year. All her girls were in and out of school as they felt the need. Her girls are smart and talented and caring and so it helps not to stress too much about impending high school. We are still unschoolers at heart, and that we will remain. School is just the next phase, and I know of two other kind-of-local families who have been radical unschoolers whose kids are in school now and all is well with them, too.
I'm off on a birthday solo-camping to trip to the far corner of the Olympic Peninsula here in WA. I've done the solo camping, but I've never driven so far afield on my own. I suppose I've driven to Yakima to visit my sister, but that was along a known path to a known destination. Next hope is to get a larger pack (I have a good daypack) and a tiny two-walled tent and a bear can and I'm ready for overnights backpacking. My dayhikes have reached their natural limit (10-12 miles, depending on terrain) and I'm ready for going deeper, I only need the last pieces of equipment (and a class on map reading would be nice).
I've had a lot of close encounters with wild animals this summer, common ones that are around but I never see, and some cute fuzzy chicks of a ruff grouse and then a "sand piper"-- squeeeee! Balls of stripey fluff causing their moms infinite amounts of stress as they become mobile....
.... which brings me back to driving and I won't go there until I need to.