Monday, September 30, 2013

Socializing a Lost Art?

Ironic. On many levels. I'm going to write (on a form of social media) about how social media is taking away the art of social lives. And the other irony is that many would think I don't know much about socialization since my kids are...*gasp* homeschooled!

I can't tell you how many invitations to "parties" I've received on Facebook recently. What is a party but a place people go to socialize and have fun! And now we're relegating it to the internet? I know. We're all busy.  And it's so much easier to "socialize" in our jammies. After the kids are in bed. And there's no commitment. And. and. And. But it's not a party.

I know that people are trying to run their own little businesses while carrying on with their busy lives and Facebook (etc) offer a way to be able to do that. BUT! IT'S NOT A PARTY! A party has food and conversation and friends and you meet people. You have a reason to get dressed. And be with people.

Another issue with socializing via social media (yeah, I'm on Facebook, I've been on it almost since it was available-I had no idea what I was getting into at the time, I thought it was a place to make a stick family that represented my family and have an aquarium!) is the RUDENESS. I would no sooner walk into a room where people were not invited to a party (ha! a real one) or included in a gathering and announce how much fun I had ("Oh, you weren't invited?") than I'd go to a party in my underwear (again-a real one!)...

It's so faceless and nameless and I'm aware that you are just telling how great you feel, and that's awesome. But what about the person that feels like garbage. Because they weren't included. And they might have never known and been fine with it. Until they see it announced. Just what they missed.

I have no idea if I will be leaving facebook anytime soon (so often it's where I find out what is going on in the homeschool community, etc!) but I imagine a world where manners matter. And people go to real parties. 

Monday, September 23, 2013

A Dangerous Game

Wanna know what one of the most dangerous games is? Dangerous for your peace of mind, your confidence? Your happiness? Your joy?


Seriously. And I know this and I still fall into the trap. 

I don't know which bothers me more, when I catch myself comparing myself to others...or when I hear people comparing themselves to me. 


Someone will always be skinnier. Have more money. Be stronger. Have a nicer house. Be more creative. Have smarter kids *gasp*...yes, I just said that! 


 Can you imagine if you saw what happened on the way to church between that couple that looks so perfect? They might have had a screaming match! (I mean, I hope not, but it's possible!)  I once caught myself comparing another couple to my husband and myself and how he always had his arm around his wife and my husband just doesn't really do that too often. Guess what? They're divorced! And while my marriage is not's strong and steady. And I love my marriage! I really truly do! And I was looking at that other couple with envy. *Sigh*

That person that has an awesome car? Or a gorgeous, huge house? Maybe they are so deep in debt to have that stuff that they are barely surviving the anxiety. Or they have to work so much that they don't enjoy the real stuff in life. Time off. Family. Friends.

We only see what people choose to show us most of the time. It's only your life that you know inside and out. The good, the bad and the UGLY! 

If you're always busy comparing yourself to others and focusing on can you be you? How can you even know who "you" is!? Let go of images. Let go of being someone you aren't. Let go of perfect! Be you!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Littlest

Wanna know what the littlest does during homeschool?

You're really glad when there's an extra little chalkboard during a spelling lesson.

You can do really fun things with a pointy finger thingy.

More pointy finger thingy fun.

Take a break to look at the Bass Pro Catalog! (In your monkey undies)

Empty washer to spin....

I want "YOU".

Still with the pointy finger thingy...
And you're reeeeeeally glad when there's somebody to play with you (brother finished his schoolwork in time to play!)
And some things that weren't pictured? throwing "frice" (rice-remember?) into the backside of our boxfan so that it flies out the other side....rawwwring like a dinosaur...doing a puzzle with numbers and saying letters...a homeschool day in the life of a homeschool family's 3 year old!

Monday, September 16, 2013

First Day!

Today we started school for the new school year-2013/2014! I'd like to say it's just because I follow the "old school" calendar for a school year (September through June) but more than that it was because we were finishing up some of last year's work-and some of it just plain didn't get finished. And it's OKAY. I used to really stress over that (you know, used to as in a month ago) but then I had several people remind me that in public school they don't always (or is it that they almost never) finish an entire book. And as I looked back on my school career I realized it was true! So, I have to be okay that there were a few unfinished lessons. We were all so done with those books!

Today, started a little rocky. I decided to take a nap yesterday. You know, "one last" nap? Only I slept too long and couldn't sleep last night. So, getting out of bed at my new self-imposed time (**gasp 7:00 am**) was not the easiest thing in the world! Then I tried to go for a run and darn it...even with my knee hurt! So, I tried to come back in but the kids didn't hear my knocking so I ended up going for a walk instead. Then it started raining. Right on me! But I got to see this:

So see? If I had been let in the house and not walked in the rain I'd have missed the rainbow!

Then during first day picture taking...there was some cat poop in the yard (we don't have a cat by the way). One kid stepped in it. Yuck! (My fault! I told them where to stand.) But look at these pics?!

Pictures like that might be worth a little mess! I can hardly believe I have a 9th grader, a 7th grader, a 2nd grader and my "baby" is 3 1/2!!! (See where I got the subtitle for my Blog??)

Overall our day went pretty well despite a few poopy moments. I don't like our spelling curriculum. And of course, like any first day, there were a few awkward moments trying to figure out how a curriculum works or why I planned the work the way I did...Or when 3 kids needed my attention all at once. That's always rough. No matter where we are or what we're doing.

I can see quite a difference in Haley's work this year from last year-her writing is smoother and less painful. And her reading? OHMYGOSH. She can read. Completely! All the reading over the summer (I assigned reading from chapter books that I knew would challenge her a little bit at rest time) helped!

Nathan was so excited to get into his "frice". I try to find some things to keep him a little occupied and a favorite is the "frice" bucket. He buries little toys in it and tries to find them....he has been very anxious to get to his frice for weeks. But he had to wait til school! Unfortunately, when I find something that is super interesting to him, Haley tends to want to play it too!!!

Our classroom: (we are in need of some new chairs, a rug and a microscope! but for now, I'm just thankful to have a school room)
My class! :)

Sunday, September 15, 2013

A New Year!

No, I really know it's not January yet. ;) But to me a new school year is almost better than a new actual year! With a new school year you get new pencils, folders, paper and notebooks!!! That's so much better!! (If you're a nerd)

I've been missing a lot this summer. We've been pretty busy this summer and we've traveled quite a bit (could be why we're broke, but hey!) and when I've been home it seems like we've had one technical difficulty after another-either the internet has been out or the laptop was having I just took it as a time to take a break from blogging for a bit.

But as we start the new school year-my 10th! But who's counting? -I started thinking again about why I homeschool. It's so easy to get caught up in so many things. And which things will secure my child's future the best and you have to have the perfect curriculum or how will they ever get into the right college? If they can't write a perfect essay, what if their SAT scores fall short? OMGosh!!!! And what if you don't put them in Speech and Debate? They won't be able to argue effectively (actually, that's not a problem with my kids). And what if the boys miss a season of baseball? GASP! They might not play in the major leagues one day!!! **FAINT**

Do you see where I'm going with this? All this frantic "join everything" mentality gets in the blood!!! (And socialization is nowhere in my list of worries, since the first year I homeschooled it has not ever been a problem!) There are so many opportunities out there for homeschoolers and for everyone that you can allow yourself to be sucked into every one of them and it will drive you and your kids crazy.

The odds that my children will play major league anything? Probably somewhere around....oh, nil. (And it's not always for the best! Have you ever thought about how many of those people end up in BIG trouble?) But the odds that they will need to know how to be a good family member? Oh, probably around....1000%!!!

My main reason for homeschooling is this: God's word tells us that what the world considers wise, God considers foolish. And what God considers wise, the world mocks as foolishness.

1 Corinthians 3:18: Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is folly with God.

My first and foremost concern is that my children have wisdom that will have eternal significance. Am I doing a perfect job at this? Absolutely not. But, I have their best interests at heart and besides...I like having them with me. ;)

So, all of the perfect activities, perfect curriculum, socialization and all the education in the world...means nothing to God.

**disclaimer: I do value education and I literally obsess over which curriculum to buy and how to supplement it and when I realize I have forgotten something I panic! I want my children to be well educated and live this life to the fullest!!! 

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