Category Archives: Just for Fun

FINALLY!!!!! A Homeschooling Post!!!!

It’s finally here. A post about one of my favorite subjects —- homeschooling. Since I hope to post about this subject often, I’ve struggled with where to start. So, why not start at the beginning. The very beginning.

Sometime toward the end of my oldest daughter’s Kindergarten year in a small private church school, I realized I was going to have to start thinking seriously about the next step. The school was a preschool which included a Kindergarten but went no further. Our other options were the local public school of course, and two other private schools — one private school which would have required being wait-listed and the other too far out of budget . The public school had become a scary thought to me. I would have never guessed this prior to having children. However, watching the experiences of my co-workers with their children deal with the school system made me nervous.

{I take this time to pause and say this. I admire teachers. I admire the dedication they have. I admire those who are passionate about helping their students learn. I come from a long line of teachers and have plenty of teachers in my family. We need teachers, good teachers. My choice to homeschool is not an indictment of the teaching profession. It’s an indictment of a bureaucracy that has gotten so large and out of control, so cookie-cutter (e.g., Common Core), that teachers have no time to help the struggling kid that does not fit the mold, or move the advanced child along so they’re not bored. We’ve taken an important individual privilege (education), historically, and mandated and regulated it so heavily at the federal level that true learning, discovery, creativity and individual personal achievement are getting harder and harder to attain. If you don’t believe me, read the Little House series for yourself from the perspective of the historical significance of public education. In many ways, we have devolved, not evolved.}

Ok…back to the story. It was a blessing that over the years we had become close with a couple of homeschooling families in our community. They had older children, so the possibility of combining forces to tackle it together was not realistic. Instead they offered me encouragement, wisdom, and a book. The book was So You’re Thinking About Homeschooling? by Lisa Whelchel. I recommend this book to anyone who has even the slightest urge to venture into home education. It’s a compilation of stories of other homeschoolers and their methods of homeschooling for many different situations. It’s an easy read, but BEWARE….it will make you feel empowered. I was convinced after reading it that I could do it. My husband agreed and the rest is history.

I have called it the grand experiment. When we first started, we reassessed the situation each school year to make sure it was a good fit for the family. Every year we make adjustments, but we no longer question if we will be doing it or not. It has become a lifestyle for us. And as my husband told someone over the phone a while back, it is the best parenting decision we ever made besides teaching our children about God.

After all these years, I still doubt my abilities, I still pray that I’m adequate. But with prayer and the grace of God, we continue to make progress. I am thankful every day that I’m afforded this opportunity. I’m thankful that I have been able to watch my kids learn and grow up close and personal. I’m in awe of the wonderful young women they are becoming. I’m also aware that education and educating is a privilege not to be taken for granted. And the ultimate responsibility for developing my children’s intellect and creativity is mine irrespective of if I choose to do it myself or enlist a public or private school.

And that’s my two cents. But stick around. I have more pennies. Feel free to leave comments, even ones of disagreement as long as they are respectful and there is no profanity.

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Filed under Domestic Matters, Homeschooling, Introduction, Just for Fun

What’s your sign?

I love Pinterest. In fact, it is one of my great stress relievers to spend an hour by myself “pinning”. I have to make a set time and time limit; otherwise it would easily, and has at times, become an unhealthy obsession and time-stealer. In some instances, the ideas shared there have been a great help to me in one way or another.

One of my favorite ideas are the wonderful quotes, funny quips, etc. that end up on signs to be hung about the home. It occurred to me how the selection of one of these signs could reveal so much about the occupants of the home. And how much time I take thinking if something really applies to our clan or not.

I love the signs that tell about the family personality. You know the ones that start, “In this family we…” fill in the blanks. Maybe these things are aspirations rather than hard fast habits by all the members, but I’ve yet to find one that really describes my family. In some ways, writing a description that is both accurate and mostly positive seems untruthful. So, I won’t. I refuse. As heart-warming as the signs are, providing only the positive without the negative describe only one half of the family’s personality. So what if I wrote a truthful sign, regardless of what perceived negative attributes come spewing forth? Could it at least make people smile (or probably laugh) even if it didn’t cause that lovely mushy feeling that most do? Hmm….let’s see. Here is my attempt.

In this family we:

Have too much estrogen for four walls
Encourage Dad to go fishing to preserve his manhood and sanity
Share the chores, but still leave dinner dishes often until the next day
Photobomb
Laugh, and laugh, and laugh
Cry
Talk about God
Talk to God
SING together in the car and solo in the shower
Opine loudly and zealously to the guests on Fox News
Argue/Bicker with each other
Learn
Love
Have tickle fights and horseplay
Get mad
Make up
Enjoy Food (too much)
Dream for the future
Encourage service to others
Try to be real
Laugh at flatulence
Pick on each other mercilessly, at times
Love NASCAR
Exercise our 2nd amendment right
Converse with the dogs as if they are people
Attempt patience and forgiveness
Need to exercise more
Read, paint, draw and do crafts
Pluck each other’s eyebrows and chin/ear hairs
Give fashion advice
Are mostly unorganized
Hate Algebra (all of us)
Stick together

So that’s our family, what about yours?

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Filed under Domestic Matters, Just for Fun, Personal News, Prayer Requests, Miscellaneous Rantings

“I Hate Man Colds!”

(Written late at night a few days ago.)

Someone tweeted this the other day (see title) , and I had to laugh. It had to be wife. How do I know? Because I too hate them….along with “man”opause , “man”struation, and masculine itching. I intimately identify with the tongue in cheek idiom, “sick as a man”. I’ve been there. At the moment, I am there. I have to laugh (alone in the laundry room) or I may just cry.

As I write this, my husband snores blissfully following his dose of Nyquil. Not a care in the world. The first time in days, he’s not experiencing the certainty of imminent demise from a nasty super-cold, that has thumbed its nose at steroids AND antibiotics. I giggle… the cabin fever, combined with my ardent wishing that he’ll feel better enough in the morning to get out of my hair and go back to work, has finally gotten to me.

On a serious note, you need to know that I love my husband with every sinew of my heart. I have loved him from the minute he flashed his baby-blues and dimpled smile at me. Be still my heart…I still smile involuntarily when I think about that memory. I have believed whole-heartedly in my vows for nearly twenty years now, and tried earnestly to love (as an action, not just an emotion) during this time.

If I really let my mind go to a darker place in the future, I know one day one of us will deal with the loss of the other. That has become a painful reality this summer as we grieved with at least four different families dear to us who lost a loved one… three husbands passing and one wife. And I can say I have true empathy for them. It really is heartbreaking. Regardless of the bitter sting of separation caused by death, I am grateful for the existence of marriage, created by a loving God who didn’t want his children to be lonely.

So, today I’m taking the opportunity the Lord has granted me to exercise my vows and my patience muscle. I have to say, tonight it’s a little weak . Sleep deprivation caused by his loud coughing, phlegm clearing (a skill I have never adequately mastered myself) and my own bout with the same bug has left me light-headed and laughing. So, methinks sleep is probably the best solution. I’ll worry about tomorrow when it gets here and be thankful for the partner I’ve been blessed with — man cold and all.

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Filed under Just for Fun, Marriage/Family, Spiritual Matters