It has been a while since I sat down to do a homeschooling post. I'm a homeschool mama first and foremost, but the passion has not been eclipsing the chaos for so. very. long. I'm not sure how long it takes YOU guys to come out of the "baby daze" - but with 3 pregnancies in the past 4 years for me, I've been in survival mode around here. [Yes, we had a miscarriage before the Viking, then my 2 year old, and my 5 month old.] Survival mode is the enemy of homeschool progress the same way my upstairs game-room couch is.
I've been feeling the sparks lately, though! The... er... Ye olde embers of educational ecstasy are returning. And that's a reallly good thing. [I misspelled that on purpose.]
Here are some hints that we are on the right track:
1. We've been doing a lot more than "just the basics" lately. I was telling someone on twitter that I need to change the tagline of this blog to "I suck at homeschooling so you don't have to." And I still might... but at least our determination to stick it out through the tough times promises to allow God the room to wow us with a miracle of success. [And that would be a wow - considering our last couple of years. But I know HE is big enough. Praise be!]
2. I have book cases in my garage. Three of them! This was a blessing inside of a blessing - brought about by my wonderful in-laws that love me and my kids very much. [Wouldn't trade them for the world.] These book cases are going in my dining room - which needed a huge dose of character. There's nothing in there but a table and an ugly light fixture. [And an art easel that is used much less frequently than it should be.] Over the past few months we have painted some coffee and cream colors on the walls and our book cases will be the white 'showcase' of our room - a design delight and a homeschool mom's dream come true. #homeschoolersLOVEbookcases
What do book cases have to do with making us better homeschoolers, you ask? Why, I'd love to tell you...
These book cases promise to do the following:
- give us a place to keep our school work - that has doors to accomodate daddy who hates homeschool mess.
- give me a spot for my cook books - since I have limited cabinet and counter space in the kitchen.
- give me a place to put all the National Geographic mags that have been on my bedroom floor for 4 years.
- give me a buffet spot to place dessert or food when we have company over.
- help us get the books that have no home more room on other book cases in our house - thinning out our space needs.
- make the room look great and the house look more homey and custom designed for our needs.
- give me a spot to showcase favorite things (not just favorite books).
- enable us to do school in the dining room without having to carry heavy loads downstairs from the 'school room'/gameroom.
- keep the kids away from the couch so they can sit at a table and get work done efficiently!
- enable us to all sit together - so mama can spread out and be available to help the kids stay focused.
- hold all our supplies so we won't have to get up and hunt for things all over the house.
- enable us to be downstairs so I don't have to worry about babies tumbling down the staircase.
- allow us to work in a room that doesn't have a TV set - but the half wall will still allow me to see in to the living room where the babies might watch Sesame Street.
- put us closer to the kitchen so we can snack to keep our energy up - and I can cook while still helping the kids stay on task.
Productivity, thou name art "Book Case". I can't wait to get them finished this weekend and loaded next week!
My kids have really missed the rigor of our pre-baby schedule. They have told me so lately... as we have been doing more school. They both have asked me about doing more - which means that all three of us are desiring to return to a more robust routine... and you know how it is pulling teeth, right? I am praying that there won't be any more pulling teeth... because pulling teeth and baby interruptions are two ingredients for failure in homeschooling when they are mixed together. With all of us on the same page and a desire to move forward - thank you Jesus - I think we'll be having a much better school year in 2011-2012. Last year (which we are still finishing), I wondered if it would be our last. It has been heavy on my heart for a long time now... and my prayer journal sounds like a broken record.
"Please God, help us get back in to a better homeschool groove - let all of us be blessed with good health so there are fewer urgent interruptions - please help the children to want to participate and learn - show us how to work around the distractions you place in our life with these sweet babies - help our attitudes to be right - multiply our meager efforts and return our passion - help us to be victorious as we seek to honor you with our children's education and hearts."
Have you ever heard the phrase: P.U.S.H. ? Push means Pray Until Something Happens. It was something I learned about in junior high youth camps as a kid. I guess it was subliminally what I've been doing for the past couple of years with our homeschooling experience. I talked a lot about our major setbacks in my post "Bad Homeschool Year... Blessings".
I know that God sometimes answers prayers instantly - like he did when he healed my daughter's legs/hip/back pain, but sometimes he makes you wait a long while as he molds you on the potter's wheel. I'm feeling a lot smoother these days -- and I'm really glad I allowed him to continue His work by staying on the wheel even when I could see no form taking place.
So here I am this year - lookin' much more like a vessel that can hold water. Waiting to be filled.
Are you just stopping by for the first time at my blog? I've been blogging about homeschooling since 2005. My kids were tiny back then and I have kept a running log of our school years and a lot of great info in my Homeschool Series post. I also have a Big List of Resources and a Nature Journal Resource section. I talk about WHY I HOMESCHOOL and give a little history about myself at my Testimony and my About Page, also. Finally, this list of links would be incomplete unless I led you to the Chick-Fil-A story -- so you could see a little of my adult A.D.D. personality in action.
Trust me - If I can homeschool, anyone can.
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