The Homeschool Life: Why I chose to homeschool my daughter

Homeschool life

I never meant to be a homeschooling mom. In fact, I balked at the idea. I was a career woman. I liked going to work and bringing home money. I enjoyed my complete financial independence. Even more than that, I loved getting away and being able to be something other than be mom and wife for 8 hours a day. However, in June of 2014 that all came to an end and I was left wondering what to do next.

For the first few months I feverishly looked for a job. I was constantly on the web trying to see who was hiring in my field of choice. I had a few interviews, but no one wanted to pay me what I was asking for. I constantly found myself saying “I’m not trying to get rich, I’m just trying to pay for child care”. Many understood, but could not meet my demands. So, for a while, I stopped trying, and focused on making sure that Johanna’s education didn’t slip through the cracks just because mommy couldn’t find work.

That first year was hard, there’s no other way of saying it. I hated it and Johanna did too. She missed school and friends, and I missed adult conversation and having professional goals. We had more bad days than good, and I was absolutely over it! I wanted to throw in the towel so many times, but I love my child and realized that she couldn’t watch Sprout all day. So I prayed. I needed the Lord on a whole ‘nother level because this was a mess! Then about 8 months into the process, I noticed that Johanna wasn’t pushing against my teaching as much and I had started to find my rhythm. It wasn’t awesome yet, but it was good, and good was a whole heck of a lot better than things had been.

A few months later I was offered a position that I couldn’t step into just yet, but the offer was made and I felt confused. The position was my dream position at a really good place with really decent money, but a huge part of me felt like I had finally found my life’s calling – being a homeschooling mom. I saw that I was able to give Johanna the things I had been looking for in the schools around us. I had gone to a private school fair in hopes of finding our dream school, but none of them lived up to my expectations. They were all missing some element that I wanted Johanna to have, but in homeschooling I could give her those things. I could give her the biblical foundation I wanted her to have. I was able to take her on many field trips throughout the week. I also was able to teach her in her learning style, something that most schools can’t do for every student.

WerenottryingtodoWhen Johanna is having a bad day, I don’t have to school her in the traditional sense. I can turn on the chromecast and school her through Netflix. When the day is ending quicker than I would like, I can bring her in the kitchen with me to help me cook, all while going over measurements with her. Being able to teach her in everything we do is such a mind blowing blessing. If it’s sunny and 70 degrees out I am able to take her outside to homeschool instead of staying in the house. We frequently visit a café in the city to people watch and do school work. The flexibility of homeschooling is a beautiful thing! And if you live in a city like mine, there are plenty of free and discounted opportunities. Many museums and theatres have homeschool days where kids are able to participate at a discounted or free price! The opportunities made available to them are fantastic!

If you’re considering homeschooling, the biggest thing I can tell you is to erase what you believe homeschooling looks like because I promise you that it is different for every family. From curriculum (are you homeschooling online? Did you buy your curriculum? Did you make up your own?) to unschooling, schooling on the road, joining a coop – it is more different than you could ever imagine. The opportunities and styles are quite varied. There are also great resources out there; Plenty of websites and groups to guide you (if they don’t overwhelm you first!). I’m apart of some great communities on facebook where I learn a lot from other seasoned homeschoolers, and newcomers like myself. The homeschool community can be a very supportive and nurturing one.

I have no idea how long I will homeschool Johanna for. A few more months? Years? Through high school? I really don’t know. Will I accept that job offer when the time comes? Only God knows. I’m ok either way. What I do know is that I count myself incredibly blessed to have this opportunity to homeschool. I get to spend a ton of time with my child, watching her develop and blossom into this really incredible human being. I get to learn about her interest and open her up to new possibilities. I enjoy not having to hear about it from a teacher these days. I like not feeling guilty like I used to. Our time was so rushed when I worked because we had to do homework, then dinner and a bath, and then it was time for bed. I felt like I was missing her grow up. Not anymore! I also have an incredibly supportive husband who appreciates the work I do with our child. If I didn’t have 100% of his support I could not do this.

Every day is not easy, but we do have more good days now than bad days. But let me be very honest, the bad days still exist, and I believe they always will. We all have a bad day every once in a while. However, God is molding me and showing me how to deal with those days. I’m learning right along with Johanna and I love that.

If you have any specific questions about my homeschooling experience, I would love to answer them. I’ve even thought about doing a periscope about my homeschool life. If you would be interested in that, let me know!

Signature

Stay At Home Mom – Peg Bundy Style

Dude, I don’t even know who I am anymore. I don’t know what has happened to me. I was quasi-forced into the role of SAHM/Homeschooler in June. I had all of these ideas of grandeur. It was going to be great! Johanna was going to learn so much! I was gonna have even more control over her school work, helping her in the areas that she struggled, making sure her morals reflected that of JD and I. Did I mention that my house was going to be spotless? I mean immaculate. You could eat off of the floor at any moment. Man, Martha Stewart/Betty Crocker/June Cleaver who?

JuneWelp, I hate to inform you that I have failed. Faaiiilleeddd darling! Like, I want to call the housekeeper, but it’s not in the budget to pay her. I’m crying real tears yo!

Yes, Johanna is learning and doing great. I’m able to structure our days however I feel like. However, I do not have a degree in education and I feel like there are some things that I just can’t teach her. I struggle with whether or not to put her back in school. In my heart of hearts I believe it is the right thing to do. First of all she is very social. She loves having friends and seeing them as often as possible. I can’t offer her that. I can offer her seeing them once a week, but that’s about it. With just that part there I feel like a failure. Also, teachers have a patience that I believe comes straight from the Lord. It may even surpass the patience of Job.

Here’s the thing. I don’t agree with the way some parents raise their kids, say what you will. I’m sure there are a ton that think my parenting skills are not where it’s at. I can’t fathom who these people are, but I’m sure they exist somewhere out there. Some of those students will be in class with my child and I don’t feel like having to get Johanna to unlearn the thing’s she picks up from them that will irk my nerves. On the other-hand, I went to school and my parents WERE my biggest influencers, and I believe that we can be that for Johanna. I turned out pretty darn good, and I believe with prayer and perseverance we can combat all the negative that she may encounter and enhance all of the good that will come her way.

And let’s not forget about me. I have turned into someone I do not know. Saturday was a snow day. In the past snow days were for catching up on shows that I have enjoyed. Do you know that I had not one show to catch up on? How disgusting! Why am I all caught up on every show there is? Why do I know what’s happening on the Bachelor? Why am I so invested in who Chris chooses? Why am I well versed in what twitter beefs are going on? I mean I’m over here tweeting Khloe Khardasian about how she doesn’t want any of Amber Rose because she is NOT about that life. I’m staring at my phone begging Amber Rose to be messy and spill everything she knows about Kanye. And just in case you don’t know what I’m talking about, here you go:

11018793_10153652716053136_3682433909413128934_nOooo hunny, did you catch that tea? I mean, Amber has been giving me life all week. So has Steve Wilcose. You know, the dude that used to be security on Jerry Springer that now has his own show. So has paternity court, Love and Hip Hop, Vanderpump Rules… I mean seriously, what reality show do you want to know about? What beef do you care to be filled in on? Because I have all the latest gossip and it’s turrrrible!

Who am I? When did I become this person? I’m usually the girl that does not want to know your business, I like minding my own. I don’t want no problems. But being a SAHM has me on some real Peg Bundy stuff. I need to get my everlasting life! I used to be that girl that was too busy to be abreast of everything that was going on in pop culture because I was hosting girls night out, or I was just out myself enjoying me and my friends. Now I’m on twitter like:

I am meant to work. I lie to myself and say if I get a job where I can work from home all the time and teach Johanna I will be more than ok with that. Pfft. I honestly don’t know if I will be completely satisfied. I mean, I really like being in an office, working with a team, being productive, solving problems that not only impact my little community, but the world. However, whenever I find awesome curriculum that is fun and interesting for Johanna, I love it! I love seeing her blossom and I love that we control what she learns and when. And seeing videos like this one sure make me believe that being home with her is the right thing to do.

It sounds like I’m complaining, because I am, but I am also super thankful. So thankful that Jesus has blessed us so that I can be home with Johanna and it not leave us super poor. We have all the necessities and more. My husband has been very supportive and I so appreciate him. We are blessed beyond. I just don’t know if I want to stay in this role. I don’t know if it is best for Johanna. Lord knows if I go back to work I will miss her more than anything and I’m sure I’m going to think I have made a terrible mistake going back to a 9-5 when I could be home with my babygirl.

I’m so over being an adult. Everything is so complex. I think Monday Johanna and I shall role play. She gets to be the mom and the teacher, while I’m the child and the student. She can probably make better decisions than I do. Afterall, we are doing a fantabulous job raising her!

D0495AD0BBB1CE657B5DAAC01B573AF6

Oobleck: A Dr. Seuss Science Experiement for Preschoolers

Today was tactile/sensory play day for Johanna, and I felt like I was running out of ideas, so I ran to instructables.com. That’s when I stumbled upon oobleck! According to instructables:

Oobleck gets its name from the Dr. Seuss book Bartholomew and the Oobleck where a gooey green substance, Oobleck, fell from the sky and wreaked havoc in the kingdom. Here the Oobleck will be made in a bowl and will likely make a mess, but only because you can get carried away playing with it.

Processed with VSCOcam

Processed with VSCOcam

We loved it! It’s so ooey and gooey and slimy and fuuunnn! It’s a great experiment to do with your kids and to get them describing something a little different. Johanna’s favorite word for it was gooey. I went with sticky and slimy. She liked to feel it spread underneath her hand and through her fingers.

1c. water
2 c. cornstarch
Food coloring (optional)
Paper plate or bowl

Mix the water and cornstarch together. Add the food coloring if you are using it. Wait 2-5 minutes for it to thicken. Go play! Use this opportunity to ask your little ones to describe the texture of the oobleck. How does it do? Is it hard or soft when it’s pushed? How about when you squeeze it?

I hope you all have as much fun with oobleck as we did!

D0495AD0BBB1CE657B5DAAC01B573AF6