Jan 232016
 

We homeschool so that we can encourage the children’s love of reading. The only problem is that sometimes the children get very quiet, and we think they’re doing their assigned “school work,” and then we find them curled up in a corner with a book.

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We homeschool so that we can encourage the children to learn a wide range of new things. This week, Madeline learned how to whistle. (There are scholarships for this, right?) The only problem is that she won’t stop whistling.

We homeschool so that the kids can have time to pursue their passions. The piano keys gather no dust because Sammy plays the piano on the way to get his math book, on the way to print his lab assignment, on the way to fold his laundry, on the way to check his email, and on the way to dinner. Whenever he gets out of a chair, he automatically walks to the piano. It’s as if he can’t help it. The problem is that he starts playing and composing and soon forgets all about the math, biology, and laundry.

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We homeschool so that we can pick the best curriculum and the best resources for each individual child. All those textbooks and all those resources take up space in the house. The problem is that some days our house looks like a library and an office supply store exploded and then cats took over.

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We homeschool because we don’t buy into the notion of “quality time.” We believe in quantity time that’s high quality. The problem is that sometimes quantity time means we get on each other’s nerves. Most of the time our small house feels cozy, but sometimes it just feels small.

This week, I had to repeatedly hunt down my students and pry them out of hiding places and take away their novels until they completed their math assignments. I had to ask Sammy over and over and over and over to get off the piano and get on with biology, and the laundry, and the English paper. I took several breaks from rearranging the avalanche of binders and books to lock myself in the bathroom to escape the whistling (and the nearness of people).

The week is winding up, and I’m frustrated and tired. I’m convinced we didn’t accomplish enough. There’s ALWAYS more to do. I feel the weight of all the things that didn’t get finished. There’s SO MUCH to learn . . .

. . . which is why the kids need to love to read so they can be lifelong learners.

Wait.  

I have to keep the big picture in focus even when the view right in front of my eyeballs is getting a bit blurred.

The problems I had this week aren’t problems at all. The only “problem” is that the kids are doing exactly what we set out to do!

So, I guess this week’s problems are really the story of our success.

It’s all about perspective, isn’t it?

Oct 192015
 
Happy Monday

Do you want a peek into the typical morning of a homeschool mom? Yeah, me too. Is there even such a thing as a typical homeschool mom? I don’t know, but I’ll give you a peek into this homeschool mom’s morning. It’s Monday. Monday’s the brand-new-notebook, clean-sheet-of-paper day of the week: fresh with possibilities. As I […]




Jan 302012
 

“Why aren’t the children in school?” I’ve been a homeschool mom forever. I’m totally over that whole why aren’t the children in school thing. If I had a dime for every time a person at the bank or post office asked about why the children aren’t in school, I’d be RICH! I used to feel […]




Nov 152011
 
How do you spell struggle?

TGIF? Not around here! The combination of my exhaustion and the kids’ Friday-induced-ADD was volatile. I’m not sure how it happened, but somewhere between the word “much” (spelled mutch) and the word “does” (spelled boes) I lost my cool. For the three thousandth time I had to correct the “b” and “d” thing. I just […]




Aug 152011
 

Wow! This summer flew by! Actually, the past eighteen years flew by! She’s sitting across the room. I look over and there she is, just like always. Oh my goodness, I feel like I’ve taken each and every minute of the last eighteen years for granted! This past Sunday in church the college-bound students were […]




Jun 012011
 
Night

Night, in its brevity and simplicity elicits a tortured uneasiness that forces me beyond my comfort zone. The book opens in 1941 with Elie Wiesel as a thirteen-year-old telling of his relationship with his mentor, the lovable, if awkward, Moishe the Beadle. Six pages into the book Moishe is crammed into a cattle car with […]




May 242011
 
Commencement

  This is a copy of the speech I gave on May 20th, 2011, prior to awarding Caroline her high school diploma. (Note: I didn’t speak about her incredible athleticism since Ken’s speech focused on that important part of her life — I didn’t want to be redundant.) I’ve been asked quite a few times […]




Feb 082011
 
for.ti.tude

“Let’s get going. Today we’ll be learning about fortitude, get your dictionaries out.” “Sammy, please stop doodling, and pay attention. No, it’s not about making everything into the number four! No, “F” comes before “G” in the alphabet.” “Mom, I have to go to the bathroom; I’ll be right back.” “Didn’t you just go to […]