Running a household.
Getting out of the house.
How do I do this?
The truth is, I don't do it all. I don't do it all well. I do not have the magic bullet for making it all work out. I am not super-organized. I am not calm and all happy. I am not getting a lot of schoolwork done. My house is a mess. The meals are haphazard. The kids are marginally dressed. They are not all happy, either.
I hate the whole supermom cliche. I have these kids, so I have to take care of them. I have to feed them, so I have to plan meals, shop and cook. Sure, they help out, and sometimes go above and beyond. But sometimes they want to be left alone, engrossed in a book or a game, and not surface till the food is ready on the table.
They need to be washed, so the older ones wash the 2 year old and cajole him to put a diaper on. 11 yo watches our baby so I can wash 5 yo's hair. But I much rather wait for my husband to come home and wash 5 yo and 2 yo properly. Often he gets held up at work, and then we scramble.
The kids need to get out of the house, which is more of a challenge now that we are on a break from taekwondo. The park does not hold the same appeal. The other day they preferred to sit in the shade and read their library books rather than play. Actually, it is more complicated than that. The boys chose to read, 5 yo ran around with friends, and 2 yo kept climbing to the highest point of the play structure and refusing to go down a long tube slide, so I had to keep on sending one of the kids to help him down. Oh, and the baby wanted to nurse. One mom remarked: these outings never go as planned. I thought, I did not expect it to go smoothly, this is what I expected it to be.
We are doing daily chumash and Rosetta Stone. We finished Vaera with 11 yo. Somehow, it went by very fast. He is not so into it, which is a shame, since this is exciting stuff: makkos. I'm using Chumash with English translation of Rashi, and I scramble every day. I feel unprepared, and he senses it. However, I'm sticking with it, hoping that it makes an impression. He was building Paro's palace in Minecraft the other day, and then he unleashed makkos. I'm not so sure how it all worked out, but he had fun.
I am doing Chumash with 9 yo, too. For most of the year, I left it up to my husband, but then we picked it up again. We are in the middle of Chayei Sorah. He is able to do Rashi at this point. I have a strong suspicion that he is dyslexic, but it will be hard to prove, since his English reading and comprehension are excellent. He has easier time reading Rashi than regular Hebrew. He keeps reading the words backwards, reading wrong nekudot, switching nekudot and letters around, etc. I wonder what would have happened if I waited to introduce Hebrew letters till he showed interest instead of pushing them when he was 5. I was nervous, and he was the only child of homeschool age and aren't all kindergarten children supposed to at least recognize aleph-beit? Strangely, I am not concerned about these things for my daughter. She is 5, and she might or might not know all her Hebrew letters. She is definitely not reading in English, despite knowing all her letters and even writing quite a bit. But I am not pushing, and I am not worrying.
I often joke that I will get homeschooling (and parenting) down to a science by the fourth and fifth kid. In a way, it's a blessing that there are so many of them, and I get to learn from my mistakes and get it right down the road.
No, I do not do it all. I have no desire to do it all, either. Right now, we just need to survive.