I cannot express in mere words how proud I am of my husband for serving in our armed forces. For four years after college, he trained and fought overseas for the safety of our country, and I am so grateful to him and to all of those who are willing to sacrifice their lives for my safety and the safety of my children. Now that Zach is back in the Army Reserves, I really enjoyed spending a week celebrating soldiers and explaining why they are so important to both of my girls. While I had to be careful about what we talked about, as I didn’t want them scared for their daddy’s safety or inundated with lots of violent images of war, the girls really embraced learning about soldiers and their duty to our country, playing with soldiers, and making crafts for daddy and their Papa (who is a Vietnam War veteran). I also think that it meant a great deal to both my father-in-law and my husband, Zach, to be remembered and celebrated on a day that perhaps too many of us brush over or take for granted.
We kept the week short and treated it as something of a fall break week (taking off Thursday and Friday), but still accomplished a lot of crafts and learning activities. The girls loved painting cards and soldier dolls for daddy and Papa. The cutest craft we did was a handprint flag, which both girls were surprisingly helpful in making. We also made daddy an adorable flag snack on Veterans Day that was patriotic, healthy, and delicious. The girls loved playing with their soldier box that I made out of numerous military items I loaded up on at the dollar store. Zach enjoyed playing with the box with the girls and explaining what each item did, especially the tank that Zach drove in Iraq.
The most enjoyable part of the week for me was taking a family trip to the National Infantry Museum at Fort Benning and not only seeing what Zach and my father-in-law did to keep our country safe but also watching Zach show this part of his life to the children. I am so grateful that Zach and my many friends who are military wives came into my life and gave me a greater awareness of the sacrifices others make to give me a sense of security in my daily life. Growing up, I had respect for the military but never saw how hard the life could be on soldiers and their family and how long lasting the effects of war could be. I am so glad my eyes are opened so I can build greater respect in my own children and make sure that Veterans Day is not just another day on the calendar each year but a special, important day to honor those who gave so much for our country and us!
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Jessica and Ana
Our Homeschooling Mission Statement: We will strive to be patient, godly examples to our children, integrating biblical principles and morality into every subject. Learning should be fun. We will foster an attitude of lifelong curiosity and play while providing the best possible education we can through books, art, technology, food, tactile activities, and cultural experiences. Learning will not be dictated by hours on a clock but will be a way of life for our families.