day 85: school photos, 2019-2020

Lovely Sunday night. I wish it could go on forever. The kids are such sweethearts on Sunday nights, cuddling the cat, making everything feel so whole…. looking like they feel so whole themselves.

Chatting with Joey about what we can do to extend our little social-distanced corner of the world this summer — and feeling the unconditional love of my son. Girls put their moms through it for a few years to be sure but no man on Earth ever treated me like the jewel of his crown the way Béla does.

Facebook reminded me via “Memories” today; “school” “portrait” time.

I don’t take as many pictures of them as I used to.

Certainly not in quarantine, when we don’t go anywhere.

I picked this year because I felt the winners were so clear.

Claudia, 6th grade:

I love the fact that her brother is in it as well. The first song Claude ever performed at SoR was “Proud Mary” and it was also the last. The kids had strong, dignified reasons for knowing when they’d had enough of SoR, and they never looked back (literally, never mentioned it again.) Music Theory at Settlement has been spotty online during quarantine, but has produced more voluntary practice in Béla than ANY other time in his life — and, songwriting (with uke tabs!) by Claudia. More creative, and more dedicated, less performative. A new phase to be remembered!

Béla, 5th grade:

A self-portrait, of course. Béla is a talented photographer and equally talented cook. It is not an exaggeration that he spent eleven hours making me a gorgeous, perfect, lattice-crust pie. He may be getting his mustache, but Béla not giving us any near-teen grief; I get “I love you”s on the daily, and so does Tucker. He loves to keep up on current events and is following the Black Lives Matter and Coronavirus stories with an intense interest in live journalism.

It was a hard school year where we changed and added curricula numerous times (the house is STACKED with textbooks) and then ended up with the same reprieve as every other kid who’d had to switch how they learned 2/3 of the year through — “don’t worry, we’ll catch up.” I’m looking into more multi-subject curricula that use both screen time and written printouts, but also provide students’ progress in transcript form to make it easier to move on.

That’s just basics; we’ll handle the clever stuff ourselves, and undoubtedly finish up literature, drama, writing and arts projects into the summer.

I’m still intensely proud that Béla’s standardized scores were so high and that Claudia just rakes in the gold medals as a young Classicist.

Can’t stop, won’t stop.

(Featured photo is one of the Tarot deck I keep in a drawer for Claudia’s mature use; but today, the World IS Sister Rosetta Tharpe and everybody better know it.)

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