10 Things I Love About Homeschooling

  1. Homeschooling is different for every family, and every family member.
  2. It’s okay to wear your pj’s to school once in awhile.
  3. You don’t need a degree in education to teach your children– as long as you have a great support system with homeschool mentors, you can do it.
  4. Teacher’s manuals tell you EXACTLY what to say to your child while teaching about something.  But if you are comfortable with it, you can deviate and use your own words.
  5. Every moment is teachable, and kids LOVE that.
  6. I have never been as close to my kids as I have been since we began homeschool.  Our relationships and family dynamics have changed absolutely for the better.
  7. If my child is struggling with a concept, I can stick with it until they grasp it.  Likewise, if they understand something quickly, or need to be challenged more, I can move them along quickly.  They are never forced past something, and they are never “dumbed down” while waiting for others.  The students have choices about their learning, and are encouraged to discover new things they’d like to learn about– which means they are actually interested in what is being taught.
  8. There are no after-school homework battles, or other standard public schooling crises such as parent/teacher or student/teacher personality conflicts, playground conflicts/social stigmas, etc.
  9. We have a choice to utilize the latest educational technologies or classical teaching methods, or a mixture of both.  We are never kept stagnant because of political agendas or budget cuts.  Curriculum is chosen by the family, to meet each individual child’s needs and interests.
  10. The way my daughter’s faces light up when they talk about their education and homeschooling brings me joy beyond measure.  🙂 

Characteristics

For someone to fully enjoy and appreciate me, I think they would have to like the following characteristics (or be willing to put up with them!):

  • Passion
  • A wry sense of humor
  • Ambition
  • An easy-going modus operandi
  • Autonomy
  • Nurturance
  • Novelty
  • Partnership
  • List-making
  • Honesty
  • Courtesy
  • Enthusiasm
  • Adaptability
  • Compassion
  • Dedication
  • Competitiveness
  • Perfectionism
  • Indecisiveness
  • Creativity
  • Adventure
  • Curiosity

 

I enjoy and appreciate the following characteristics:

  • Honesty
  • A wry sense of humor
  • Willingess to compromise
  • Loyalty
  • Spontaneity
  • Confidence without egocentricity
  • Outdoorsy
  • Creativity
  • Sticktoitiveness
  • Ingenuity
  • Bounce-backability
  • Friendly
  • Affectionate
  • Forgiving
  • Fun-loving
  • Spirituality
  • Supportive
  • Excitable
  • Open-minded
  • Trusting
  • Perceptive
  • Debonair
  • Talkative

I have big plans.

I want so much more out of my life than I have allowed to actually come to fruition.  I’m excited to finally feel like I am headed down a positive path that will help me achieve everything I dream of.

It took a long time to get here, to this point that I actually feel capable of being the boss of my own life.  I don’t know if it’s personality, or the road I’ve traveled that has made me who I am– but until recently I’ve felt somewhat out of control of my life.  Like someone else was steering, and I was merely along for the ride.2003

When I hit “the Big 3-0” I started taking inventory of my life, who I am and where I’m headed.  I discovered it doesn’t quite match up– this life isn’t mine.  It isn’t who I want to be, it isn’t who I am on the inside.  I want so much more for myself, for my family.  I’ve made a mental checklist of things I desire, things I feel are non-negotiable, things that make me feel whole.  I’m not speaking of material things… I’m speaking of the deepest heart’s desires.

For some reason, even around my peers, I’ve felt like I am not 100% a grown-up.  I wouldn’t say I’ve felt childish, just like everyone else was much more mature than I was.  I felt like when I was doing adult-type things (such as grocery shopping, calling creditors, etc), I felt like a little kid using 411 for the first time! LOL  Like it was something an adult should do for me.  I don’t know… weird I guess.

Anyway, since I’ve turned 30, I don’t really feel like that anymore.  I feel like, “Okay, let’s do this.”  I can handle anything!  Then I did the “inventory”…. and was like “Wait a second.  That’s not how I would do it!”  lol…

This probably sounds like a bunch of psycho-babble to all you mature folks out there, but it makes perfect sense in my brain! 😉

And you know, taking charge of my direction like this…. it’s liberating!  It’s empowering.  It feels really, REALLY good.  It’s something I’ve been craving and didn’t even realize it!  So that’s why I’m so excited about it.

🙂

Being the change.

Life is too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, so love the people who treat you right, forget about the ones who don’t, and believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it.
 

 

I saw this quote in an email, and it really struck me.

Why do we, as humans, instinctually crave acceptance- even from those that treat us poorly?

I really struggle with this.  There have been so many people along the road that treat me like a doormat, I’m sure it is the same with most everyone- we all have people in and out of our lives that we’d rather have out more than in.  Is it because we long for approval from them?  Is it because deep down, we know they treat us that way because they think they are better ( smarter; prettier; etc ) , and we want them to realize the err in their thinking?

Back to the “10% situation, 90% reaction” theory, I always choose to find the best in someone and give them the benefit of the doubt.  I would rather give them the chance and be wrong, than not give them a chance and be wrong.  People surprise me all the time, with their good deeds and bad ones.

At what point is it okay to say, “Ok, I’m done.  I don’t like you in my life anymore.  I don’t like the way you treat me.  I don’t like the way you make me feel.  I don’t want to know you anymore.” ???

Is it ever appropriate to give up on someone?  To say, “Yep, I know you are a work in progress, just like I am, but I just don’t think you’ll ever be good enough to be part of my life.  You are a bad seed, and I’m better than that.”

I don’t think it is.  I wouldn’t ever want people to give up on me.  I don’t believe it is ever okay to so self-righteous that you choose to believe you are above anyone else.  Everyone makes mistakes, including YOU.  Including me.  Everyone has bad days.  Everyone has scars that influence their actions, in one way or another.  A persons “bad choice” could actually be a 100% improvement on a choice they made in the past.

That said… I do think it’s important to prioritize the people that DO treat you right.  Giving a wrong-doer neverending chances with the hope of improving them or enlightening them doesn’t mean that they should come first.   I have a tendency to want to fix everyone, I want to change the world for better… which means I have a tendency to allow the wrong-doer’s to cut in the front of my line. 

200

 

I need to work on that.

What I Learned in 2008

Some of it anyway…

 

  1. Nothing is as it seems, this life is but a dream. (Courtesy Jason Mraz)
  2. It really is only 10% situation and 90% reaction to it.
  3. It doesn’t matter how wonderful, amazing, and beautiful you are… you are still God’s creation and He will do with you as He wishes– even if it means taking you away from everyone that loves you and needs you.  Life can, and will, go on.
  4. Making an appointment with myself to sit down and “worry” is more effective than worrying 24/7.
  5. Children have the desire to please everyone around them all the time, and the ability to do so only to those that want them to.
  6. The ability to act independently is a gift and should not be taken for granted.
  7. Dreams are goals without a plan.
  8. Love between two humans is subjective and never, ever unconditional.  If you want unconditional, get a dog.
  9. I can’t expect to be what I haven’t worked to become.
  10. Children will only absorb what they want to, no matter how many times you tell them otherwise.
  11. If you aren’t listening, God will drop you on your butt, right there in the sand.
  12. Sometimes that ticker in your head reeling over and over is in someone else’s handwriting.  You know you will be okay when you learn to recognize that, and start your own draft.
  13. Football is a lot like life.
  14. Children have the uncanny ability to hear you talking about Disneyland one floor up and 3 rooms over, but not hear you when you are right in front of them asking them to take out the trash.
  15. Real friends listen to you bitch and complain then tell you when you are being an idiot and set you straight.
  16. Opinions are like assholes, everyone has them and they are important… but they also require a certain level of cleanliness or just keep to yourself!
  17. Sometimes people just add you to their FB to up their friends count, who cares?
  18. The serving size on flavored coffee creamer is a LOT smaller than you think it is.
  19. A year can be challenging, but when it’s over, be done with it.  Move on!  Next?
  20. I am stronger than I think I am.

Even Fewer

So I decided to make three resolutions.

1) Get fit.  Be healthy.

2)  Read my Bible every single day.  Even if only for 5 minutes.

3)  Plan & execute family vacation (other than annual beach camping trip.)

I think these resolutions are absolutely attainable.  I was concerned about creating expectations for myself that are unrealistic, but I’m pretty sure that these are managable.

I also have other “goals” in mind, but I’m not going to go fetal in the corner if they don’t happen.  I’d like to blog at least once per week– it’s healing.  I’d like to go to church more– that isn’t really up to me though.  I’d like to have my hair cut more often– any woman that says a haircut doesn’t give them an emotional boost is lying.  I’d like to see my friends more.

My girls also made resolutions. 🙂

Kylie said she is going to try to listen the first time she is asked to do something.  I told her she needs to create a reachable goal instead of that one…

Emma said she has a goal of not getting in trouble so often.  I’m happy with the fact that she recognizes it will happen at some point, just because.

Natalie has a goal of eating healthy.  She said she will only have sugar once a week.  No, month.  Ummm… wait.  Week.  Yeah, week.

Matthew has some resolutions as well… He wants to exercise more (it makes him feel better in general, more energy & stamina.)  He wants to save some money.  Some other more person goals too. 🙂

A quote:

“How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them.”
-Ben Franklin

This guy had it on the nose!  Everyone has no problem finding fault in everyone around them, rarely do they reflect upon themselves.  With the welcoming of a new year, a few people seriously take inventory of their lives and recognize the areas that need improvement.  Even fewer actually take action against them.

I am one of those “even fewer”.

Resolutions

200-34I’ve never been one to make New Year Resolutions– well, since I was a kid anyway.  I always thought them pointless.  Little white lies that we tell ourselves to justify our previous behavior.  After all, if it is something that needs fixing, and you have a plan to fix it, you can pretty much consider it already fixed– right?

Wrong.

Which is why I’ve been anti-resolution.  Don’t get me wrong, I love GOALS.  Something attainable, achievable, and not just self-loathing blather.  A goal doesn’t necessarily carry an intention of fixing a problem.  It carries a connotation of making something better, or starting something new with an intention of a completed end result.

However, this year, this NEW year, I have decided to make a real change.  I am making resolutions.  The reason I have decided to make real “resolutions”, is because I need to change myself and my life– which means changing my habits.  If my habit was not making resolutions, I need to do the opposite.  Perhaps my prior “anti-resolutionist” status was a cop out– a way of giving myself an excuse to not make any real changes.

I am still thinking about what my resolutions will be… they have to be similar to goals in the sense of being attainable and beneficent.  But I think they will be mostly old-fashioned resolutions.  I’m yearning for a simpler life.  I want to get back to the simplistic standards and expections of auld.  The most certain way to acheive this will be to step right out and act on it.