Over the two week Christmas break, we spent a lot of time there getting things settled and the kids, especially Rose Bud have spent their break picking up some important life lessons.
Rose Bud has learned to paint a room, including the microskills of
choosing paint at the hardware store (color, type, quantity and quality) --with the added bonus that there was an interesting crime investigation going on while we were there!
preparing a room for painting (the secrets of drop cloths and masking tape, as well as removing all the screwed in stuff on the walls)
using a paint roller vs. a brush
determining the number of coats needed and covering brush strokes
removing the tape at the end
She also changed a light bulb! Big whoo, right? Well, they were playing in the basement and were dismayed to find out that the light no longer worked. Busy, I said they could have Dad look at it later. About 5 minutes later, Rose Bud came back up and said, "I think maybe the light bulb is just burnt out. Where are those light bulbs?" I sent her to the closet and another 5 minutes later, she was back up with the old bulb, all triumphant that she had fixed it!
I'm always annoyed by how quickly they are to be helpless (MOOOOM! WHERE is the mustard???? I can't find it!) So I was proud of her for thinking of the solution on her own (truthfully, it hadn't occurred to me yet that it was a burned out light bulb, either).
Rose Bud painted a shelf, all by herself. We talked over the placement of the colors to help her plan it out, but after that, she was all on her own. Nary a drop of paint on her carpet and the shelf looks great!
She lined her drawers with shelf paper, measuring and cutting by herself after Nonny showed her how. We also planned the placement of her stuff in her room.
The other kids haven't had so many hands-on lessons, but have been helping out and observing all the goings-on. We've talked through the placement of furniture & appliances, discussed and planned the colors for their room and they have helped rip up carpet and watched the process of floor sanding.
Mostly they have just had fun. They can scooter in the garage, climb in the barn, swing on the tire swing, roam the property, build a fort in the old cistern in the basement, explore the rooms in the house and plan their new spaces.