Thursday, October 11, 2012

{DIAL} Alicia's 16 hour day

I've always associated home-schooling with stay-home mums. After all, mums who work usually come home tired, and might not have the time to plan for those home-learning activities. So I was really impressed when I met Alicia, who manages to juggle work, family and home-learning! Her enthusiasm for learning is contagious, and you can hop over to her blog to be inspired! (Her blog not only chronicles her learning journey with her daughter, but also includes great ideas for parties!)

Alicia has one sweet little girl and is currently in transit. Read on to find out what goes for a day when she's at home!


Dumpling is a not a morning person. She does wake up on her own but she does not speak much until a bit later. That's my rare 30mins peace in the morning. OK, I try to tell myself that it is 30 but actually, 10 mins is more like it.

While she was lying in bed, I went to wash up. I came out of the bedroom for my morning coffee and saw this when I went in to check on her later. :)

Dumpling was quite a reluctant writer. So I laid off the writing bit during our homeschool sessions till she was ready just a few months back. So it is certainly a pleasant surprise to see that she sounded out and wrote such a long sentence. :) 

Dumpling attends classes at a Chinese school daily and today is Children's Day. So I roped her in for some help in wrapping up some presents for her friends. 

After a while, she decided she had enough and ran off to change. Halfway through, she told me that there is no need to put on school uniform as it is Children's Day and there is celebration in school. I pondered over it for a while because I did not recall receiving any note on it. So, just to be on the safe side, I packed a set of her uniform in her bag. 

True enough, I found out that yours truly was "smoked". The teacher clarified that the school did not make such a "no uniform day" announcement. LOL. Dumpling fibbed - hmmm... looks like we will have a very serious chat after class.

I went back home and worked a bit on a few blog posts of which one is the official cupcakes sponsor for Dumpling's upcoming birthday party. 

Here's a cute photo from the web the sponsor shared with me :)


And as always, time passes too quickly and it was time for me to play chauffeur and pick Dumpling up. On a whim, I decided to surprise her by bringing along a special guest......

OREO! Our blue roan cocker spaniel. :)

Once we got home, it was time for lunch before Dumpling gets to bed for a nap. So what's for lunch? Something easy for everyone - Spaghetti Meatballs Bolognaise! I have had the same helper for more than 4 years and though we do have trying moments, I am thankful that she has learnt to cook well enough for the family. And to think, she did not even know what spaghetti was when she first started working for us... :D

Ahhh... her napping... Such bliss. I have to admit that I steal kisses from her all the time while she sleeps. :p 

This is also where I get my 1.5 - 2 hours of sanity and "me time" as I work on more blog posts and do my research on Dumpling's upcoming Harry Potter inspired theme party along with planning for the activities on a Literacy Program which I run weekly. 

Once Dumpling is up, it is time for her shower. Dumpling loves water but she loves to dilly dally more. To hasten the process of her going for her shower fast, I usually try to entice her with games / activities she can do in the bathroom. Today it is frozen ice block with marbles/whistles and other "whozits and whatzitz" galore in it. I could not take a photo of this as my hands were wet! 

She then asked to head to the void deck with the dogs where she can blow some bubbles and the dogs can chase after the bubbles. :)

After dinner, it is our homeschool time! At the moment, we are embarking on a musical journey where I try to work with Dumpling on her general knowledge. We got this title from the library and read to it with Tchaikovsky playing in the background.  

To make things more fun, we are also reading the title below and creating our journal on this homeschool unit extending into language arts and math. 

We have regular water and washroom breaks in between our sessions where Dumpling also has "free play" time for her to doodle, etc. 

PS: no, in case you are freaking, there is no 'homework'.
I was having some fun with some special effects on the iPhone and saw this overlay template. :p 

One common question that I get from friends is how do I schedule my homeschool sessions - is there a fixed format that I stick to and how long? For my sessions, because it is done in a cross curricular manner, I will span across various subjects. For the moment, as I am doing a music study unit, the math part is where we do beats counting. We then extend to subjects such as Geography where we read a bit more on e.g. Russia. We will also be making a Russian dish in the upcoming week. :)

There are "good" days and there are "bad" days where sometimes we breeze through the evenings while on other days, it is a bit more trying depending on Dumpling's mood and focus. 

But for today, she was clearly in a spelling and writing mode. While Dumpling is able to write out stuff phonetically, I have not consciously teach other Dolch words until very recently as she wanted to "write" her own stories. So she gave me another surprise where she suddenly wrote out these words which I did not teach except for "three" as part of a "th" phonics session. 

Once we are done with our HS lesson, my helper changes Dumpling into her jammies while Mummy Sue here jumps in for another quick shower. Dumpling sleeps very little and sleeps late at night. But once she is off to snooze land, it is where I try to catch up on my reading. This is the title which I am trying to finish up on:

I usually check my what's app messages and Facebook updates at this time as I slowly wind down for bedtime. This is also where I run through tasks for the next day and would sometimes wonder what's in store for me too. 

Yes, it has been a very long day but I am glad and am a happy mum. Life certainly has been more fulfilling these recent years after I became a mum and looking at things, I do not think that there is any chance of me slowing down over the next 10 years. LOL. But I am having a ball of a time so BRING IT ON! :)


Have you recorded your day in pictures?  If you have, link-up here, and take a peek at the lives of other mums too!


  1. Alicia when I first found out that you were homeschooling Dumpling AND working FT, my jaw dropped. You are truly Supermum. I have been so slack with my home learning efforts with Poppy now that there's the baby. But we are slowly getting back in the groove again. Slowly but surely :)

    1. Hi Adora,

      We all are - in different areas! Being a SAHM in transit now, I am no less busy than when I am working. It helps that I have a helper so she takes care of the washing and cooking so once I know off, I will gulp down dinner and then HS. When my helper went back for home leave, I was still HS but some household chores took a back seat. So my dear, you are a Super mum too! :D



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