Once upon a time there was this Homeschooling Mom. She didn’t really love homeschooling, it wasn’t anywhere near the top of her list of Fun-Things-To-Do. But she never had peace with the thought of sending her kids off on the bus (although are many times she dreams 0f a quiet house for 8 hours a day) so she pushed on.
While her friends were posting cheerful, happy 1st day of school pics on facebook, this Mom sat with her home school catalogs and tried to decide which curriculum to order.
While her friends were shouting hallelujahs that their kids were back in school, this Mom looked at the upcoming school year with a resigned sigh. Inside she was kicking and screaming and throwing a royal tantrum, but she knew that wasn’t how she wanted her kids to act so it would be best if they not see Mom acting like that. So she kept it all inside and calmly ordered the curriculum.
While her friends were dressing their kids up in cute, new, back-to-school outfits, tying new shoes, creating pretty hairdos, packing fun lunches, handing out brand-new back packs full of all the latest and greatest school accessories, this Mom calmly and totally without fanfare, announced one weekend that ‘School starts Monday.’
She got her kids up on Monday, insisted they eat breakfast, and started school. Doggedly determined to see it through for one more year.
Homeschooling Mom had a plan – sort of. She spent all of about 5 minutes thinking up a plan sometime on Sunday before school commenced on Monday. Flash cards, time tests, math, a bit of English, and a lot of lets-just-see-what-happens.
The plan was immediately derailed by the arrival of the UPS man, delivering a box of school books for the 4th grader. And while Homeschooling Mom loves the misty daydreams of a neat, cheerful, cute, organized school room; students who wake cheerfully and get to their school work on time; and a household that runs like clockwork, she has long determined that to keep her sanity, and not endanger the well-fare of her children she MUST be adaptable to a change in plans and the word ‘Schedule’ must be used very loosely.
So the first hour of this school year was spent looking at new books. (really, if Homeschooling Mom had been a bit more on schedule the books would have arrived a few weeks earlier anyway)
Homeschooling Mom spent most of the day trying to figure out the daily schedule in the teacher handbooks and not feel totally overwhelmed. She tried very hard to focus on today only and not remember the fact that school must happen every day, 5 days a week till next May or June.
Homeschool Mom muddled her way through the day, and school work got done. Not everything, but she is hopeful that in a the next couple of days a rhythm can be found – off-beat as it will most likely be.
Homeschooling Mom cleaned out and organized the lockers somewhat, had to get dining room table cleared of all those books so she could work on a business project. Because Homeschooling Mom is also an entrepreneur – trying to run a successful business. She baked some cookies to keep the man of the house happy. She ran the girls to Horse Camp in the evening. She went with hubby to pick up a cupboard she bought last week. She sat down to update her blog. She barely kept her eyes open long enough to get the post written.
How DOES she do it all? Well her house looks like this. Chaos.
Her laundry is NEVER done. Ever.
The kids clutter lays in places besides where it belongs. And Homeschooling Mom just sighs and leaves it there. Or stacks it all on one chair so the other furniture can be used for what it was intended.
Piles are everywhere. But school happened. Homeschooling Mom was exhausted by the end of the day and more than ready for bed. Tomorrow would be another day. Her constant prayer all day was ‘Lord, just help me focus on today and make it the best I can.’
One day at a time. For the next 278 days till June. 😀
Blessings to you Jill as we go through another year! It was fun to see all of the same books we’ve spent the last 2 weeks starting on. Someone asked me this weekend how the first couple weeks have gone and I replied, ” 2 weeks down, 32 to go!” 🙂 No, really I am enjoying it so far. I am doing some co-teaching with my sister-in-law and it is REALLY helping me to stay motivated & on schedule! I SO understand the piles, though! It seems like my garden hit full force right when school started & I am wondering if I will get over this hump or not. Hang in there! Hey, if one of your daughters likes to draw, give me a shout. I organized a drawing class for this fall.
Becca’s handwriting is beautiful!!!
Renae read several of the Patricia St. John books this summer and really enjoyed them. In fact, I just ordered one off of Amazon for her. She’s been reading L.M. Montgomery now. I love watching her enjoy them.
Tucker is dragging his feet about school, although I tried to scale back his workbooks. I can’t quite figure out his learning style. He declares he doesn’t like school. Maybe it’s just not being able to do exactly what he wants all the time??? 🙂 He has several books he’s reading this year that he does like.
Hopefully, the Math cd’s will arrive soon. Maybe today? I finally made it to the post office on Friday.
Blessings on the rest of your week!
Jill Flory says
Miss Becca is doing much better at everything than she wants to let on! I like Patricia St. John and L.M. Montgomery too.
Wendy B says
I can identify. Mostly. This morning I will rush my notification to the school board. A day late. This afternoon I will clear a path to my school desk so I can begin making the space habitable. Sometime this week I will have the rest of the school books ordered. Next week, we will *finally* start school (according to my very excited kiddos). Here’s the difference…I LOVE SCHOOL. This was the play of choice of most of my childhood. I think most of my life has prepared me for this event. It ain’t easy. We’re over the hump and like you, have highschoolers. Things aren’t new and exciting all the time anymore. ANOTHER one of my littles needs to be taught to read this year. The next one up needs to learn to read ‘better’. One has just got to learn how to spell. Other things are getting in the way [ALOT of other things] 😉 You should know all about them. The important thing is…well, the IMPORTANT THINGS. All else is just stuff and nonsense. Keep FOCUSED! Remember what the Lord called you (& me) to do. Yeah, it’s okay to enjoy those other obligations, no need to feel too guilty. Just keep perspective. That’s not easy. It takes GOOD mornings. Early ones. When everything is quiet and the sound of family is awhile away. I love to stretch out MY time. Before the Lord. The quiet solitude of the household and the warmth of a mug of coffee. My Bible. Yeah, it’s time to get back to school! A firm schedule (which inevitably will fall apart more often than not) is what kiddos and mom’s need! I for one, can’t wait! All the other busy-ness will have to wait. To the back burner. Those things may still happen, but in their own time. My sweet childies need their teacher. Whole. Vibrant. Excited for them to succeed. They even tell me that. “Mommy, I NEED you. Give me some time.” Especially when I forget my calling. Which I do when other things sweep me off my feet. And other things crash into the space meant for them. So, friend…don’t be discouraged if homeschooling isn’t near the top of you list of fun things to do. Many days, I think, “This is too hard. Maybe there is an easier way.” Just remember. The hills we climb, aren’t suppose to be easy. They mold our lives. They fit us for something better. They show our children what Life really looks like. I always say…looking back…it was all worth it in the end! At end of 278 days. I know you do too! Blessings to your family.
Jill Flory says
I love your comment. I wish homeschooling was something I really really loved. Some days are great! I do love to see them learn and I am so blessed to have kids that don’t really have learning issues. My second grader isn’t finished with 1st grade yet – but that is mostly my fault. And the fact that she was still struggling with some dislexic tendancies so we just slowed her down. She is picking it up so fast now – even in just 2 days. And all that other stuff – it always falls in place where it needs to!
Pam @ Simple Details says
I’m beyond impressed with your ALL of your commitments, Jill! You are truly an inspiration in so many ways! 🙂 Wishing you all the BEST year!
Jill Flory says
Thanks Pam – it’s really not so impressive though! One day at a time I will get it all figured out and in the proper perspective!
The principal just called and said you may add a Home Ec course to your curriculum. It might make the day a bit longer but think of all the household tasks the girls will master before they are teens. Then I will buy them from you, even though that is illegal.
Jill Flory says
🙂 HEEHEE! I have been adding much more ‘home ec’ type stuff lately. I have to focus on the fact that even though it takes me longer right now to help them learn how to do it – ultimately I’m working myself out of a job! For awhile – then they get jobs of their own and move on with their own lives!
Pam Ballard says
Thanks for sharing your piles it makes me feel so much better. I am trying to embrace that my house will not always be clean and everything in place. If I could go back and start over I would homeschool my kids too!
Jill Flory says
I’m glad it helps other people feel better, Pam! It is nice to be reminded that most people really live in their houses 🙂
Loi Thai - Tone on Tone says
Your dedication, determination, discipline, and so much more….all impressive and inspiring!! Have a wonderful school year! Your girls are beautiful.
Jill Flory says
Thanks Loi! If I weren’t convinced I should be homeschooling I’d be calling the closest bus driver and begging them to pick my kids up in the morning! LOL!
Regena Fickes says
Well, my kids are well past schooling age and the grandkids are in public and homeschool (with thier Mom), but you do my heart so much good. Someone has stairs just like mine and the rest of the house is lived in! I am in the midst of an upcoming pastors’ lunch at my church, regular Wednesday night meals, cleaning my elderly stepfather’s house while he is in rehab after a long illness, painting my bath and the list goes on. Sometimes, I get the crazy idea that I am not using my time wisely. Thank you, darling Jill.
Jill Flory says
Thank you Regena, for leaving me sweet comments! It is nice to be reminded now and then that we are not the only ones with messy, lived-in houses!
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I didn’t realized you were using MFW?! We are doing Rome to the Reformation this year. We love it… too bad we weren’t on the same cycle and we could have our own neighborhood co-op!! 🙂
We’re 17 weeks or so into our “school year”. We just finished week 4 of MFW’s Countries and Cultures…and my house looks similar to the pictures posted here. Thankfully, learning is occurring – some learning won’t be measurable for a weeks or years…Thank you for your honesty about your real life. It’s encouraging to this tired Homeschool Mom 🙂 Blessings!