Lack of time and energy have made blogging hard lately. I don’t know how to educate my children at home, manage the house, and blog at the same time. The rare moment of alone time is filled with calling an adult to talk. I still write in my head some, still imagine what areas you might need encouragement in and try to post about them. But I’ve felt like a blogging failure as some weeks I barely post at all.
These first months of homeschooling have left me dry. I think in lessons, not written words.
- Homeschooling is flexible. We do less work during soccer season and more in the winter. No more rushing home on weeknights or hoping we don’t make the finals of a tournament because there is so much homework left to do. Learning happens everywhere. In the store, before bed, in the car because we all study together. And reading happens on sun-soaked pavement, in the tree or curled up with a blanket on a couch with a guinea pig!
- Time for Chores. The girls can do chores, school, and guitar all before soccer practice. I no longer skip chores or guitar so they can have downtime.
- The girls fight less. Perhaps because if they fight, there is no one else around to play with? Or because my oldest is not listening all day to kids complain about authority figures and siblings?
- My kids see everything I do. They learn what it takes to run a house, to pay bills, to find deals on curriculum, to study the Bible, to pray for a friend who calls, to stop in the middle of frustration and rewrap with patience from God.
- Great education. I love what they are learning. I love teaching. I love addressing the things they missed in public school and accelerating their strengths. And I love seeing the world unfold and eyes brighten as they make connections between history and real life.
- Advice from others. I know a few homeschool families personally and many bloggers, but connecting with experience is priceless.
- Jordan. Our good friend. He comes every other week and does school with my girls from 9 am – 1 pm. I am sure he has preserved my sanity. We affectionately call him our favorite sub.
- Tea. When stress levels and tears peak (and they do, every week), all three of us have started making tea. We think we are fabulously British when add cream and sugar.
- My house is messy. Yes, this is a praise. I’ve never been a neat person. I’ve struggled learning the art of organizing. Now that I am homeschooling I no longer feel guilty about this–there isn’t time!
- My kids see everything I do. The extra chocolate chips I sneak, the choice to watch Parenthood when I should be cooking dinner, the times I don’t follow my own rules about Facebook hours, and the times I don’t rewrap my frustration in patience. I’ve clouded my lack of patience in a pretty phrase, but it is ugly and sometimes looks like angrily raising my voice and placing blame.
- My kids are always here. There are no neighborhood kids that come to play when school gets out. They are always here and I miss the “me” recharging time that happened when they went to public school.
- Lack of girl drama. It’s not that I enjoy girl drama but I wonder what life lessons my girls are missing by not having to face the meanness of tweens. Will it hurt them to miss out on these lessons or strengthen them? I worry too much.
- Missing old friends. We had a strong group of friends and moms that we loved at our public school. We still see some of them, but it is not the same. Homeschooling feels lonely despite our co-op.
- My kids are always here. Did I mention this yet? By 3 o’clock on Thursday (Tuesday some weeks) I am ready to ship them off for 24 hours. I am learning to create silent boundaries but these girls of mine, they love to talk. They love to share. Even if I don’t help them, they prefer to do math snuggled up next to me. Sweet. For 10 minutes once a week,but not every day. And some days, I swear one of them calls my name every 5 minutes. Sometimes I want to scream, “Stop touching me!” This struggle is the biggest of them all. I thought I’d left these days of attached to the hip behind when they turned five.
So dear friends, pray for me. Though my praises outnumber my struggles, the struggles feel heavy and many days my lack of patience is troubling. God is stretching me through this adventure and I can offer this lesson as encouragement for us both: Self-sacrifice may hurt, but it is the path to the peace of Christ. I am trying to grab hold of this truth and ride it to the end. Will you join me?
How can I pray for you today? Shoot me an email if you don’t want to leave it in the comments (the little envelope button on the top right will take you to email).