Homeschool Confessions 4: Dear Hubby

My husband, who announced in December that we would be homeschooling the boys, thought I was crazy when we got together. He wasn’t a homeschool believer, and was adamant that the boys belonged in school. It worked for us, because they were in school and I was working full time. I didn’t argue much.

At the time, I assumed I’d be working full time forever. The days of staying home were long gone and should be neatly packed away. While I longed to be home again, I just couldn’t fathom that happening. Who takes on a woman, and two kids from a previous marriage, and supports the stay at home endeavor?

(I know the answer to that question!)

I’m not sure if I’m that persuasive, or if he’s just that good hearted (maybe a little of both?) but through a series of events that we couldn’t control, and some that we could, I am home with our crew. I’ve been an at home wife and mom since August. We’ve been homeschooling since December. And I was wondering if my hubby was a believer in all (or most) things homeschool, or if he was simply “along for the ride?”

My answer came one afternoon recently.

I had been carrying on about government funded education options, the pros and cons, and why some homeschool groups don’t let homeschoolers that use K12 type programs participate in their activities. I’m not a fan of exclusion, to be honest. But on that same honest token, I get the concern with the government funded/backed issues and losing our right to homeschool, which is a right I believe in and will fight for.

So, he obliged and listened – and I didn’t sum it up in a paragraph for him like I just did here. I probably talked for a couple of hours, but who knows. He was listening and I was not stopping. Well, I did finally stop. Dear hubby had that “okay, whatever” look on his face. (It’s not so bad as it may sound; it’s more like “I trust you to make curriculum and schooling choices.”)

Some time passed, I’m not sure if it was just a few days or maybe a week or two. I brought up an awesome math resource I found, and was telling him how it’s free and it’s this and it’s that and I am excited to give it try. He nodded, and asked, “Is it government funded?”

Aha! He has been listening.

Throwback Thursday 4: Always Learning Something

(I originally posted this here on April 29, 2012. That really great guy I was seeing? He gave me his last name this year in February. Those fears? I should have written them down, because I don’t remember what I was referring to that I didn’t share. Now, we have a baby girl to love on and pray over and teach about God and help her discover His purpose for her. Right now, I’m learning new things from our baby, and I’m learning to be more intentional with my writing, too. Enjoy!)

I’ve tried to adopt a lifestyle of always being willing to learn – about how things work, about people, about the world and anything else that isn’t covered by those categories. Lately, it seems like I’ve been learning more about people/relationships between people than anything else….well, actually, I’ve been learning how to operate a tow truck, too. And process land surveys. I guess I’m learning a lot these days – which for me, is a great thing!

I’ve also been learning a lot about myself, so I guess I’ll start there. Some of these are not new lessons, just reminders that I happen to need OFTEN.

I cannot please everybody. In fact, it’s becoming quite apparent to me that the only people that will ever be truly pleased with my performance, happen to also be the people that are pleased with their own lives. Or they are generally the people that see past performance straight to the heart of me.

I want the people in my life to know that I value them, as an individual, more than I value being right, more than I value what stuff they have, or what they are giving to/doing for me. However, sometimes even a sincere apology is not heard or noticed, or is intentionally ignored/thrown away. And it hurts when people value their pride more than a relationship. I can chose to be bitter or just let it go.

I’ve learned that not all relationships are healthy and there are people in my life that I have given too much to for too long. I’m working to change that, in my own way. I have a hard time in this area because I am very afraid of being selfish in the way I live my life, and I know that nothing good comes from selfishness…but I’m realizing that it’s okay if I don’t meet every request (or demand) that people try to place on my time and space.

This should be further up on the list, but this list isn’t in order of importance…. it’s just as it comes to mind right now. I have two of the most amazing boys in the world, and I want them to know how much they mean to me. I also want to show them how to live with integrity, and I want them to know that life isn’t all about them. I want them to know they were created by God with a purpose, and I want them to know they are loved.

This is a big one, and I’m not sure I have all the words for this part of my post. I am seeing a really great guy, and he swept me off my feet and captured my heart. I am very thankful to have him in my life, and I am excited for all that the future holds. With that being said, I’m learning about some of my fears, too. I spent some time thinking I’d never have a serious relationship – me and my kids are a lot to deal with, not to mention, I have some huge insecurities. Keeping that in mind, I also wanted to make sure that I had let past wounds heal up, and had unpacked, put away and dealt with as much of the baggage from past relationships as possible before being in a new relationship. I don’t want the past to cloud my judgement for the now/future. I don’t ever want to make anyone feel like they are being held accountable for the mistakes and crimes of another person. I don’t want to make unnecessary/unfair comparisons because of a hurt I suffered in the past. And I thought I had done a fine job of forgiving, moving on, healing, and getting over the past. I still think that I had done alright, but I didn’t realize that some of the healing could only come by taking the risk involved in trusting someone new.

I had a little tiny thought in my head that I might have some fears – and to be honest, I thought the biggest fear would have something to do with cheating or as I typically say: “finding something better to do”. Buzz wrong. That is the least of my concerns.

I’m going to leave you hanging, because I’m not ready to post what the biggest fears are, but they surprised me. And I’m working through them. And thanking God for a bestie that can remind me to “relax and enjoy”. I don’t want fear to control/cloud my judgement anymore than I want resentment, unforgiveness, anger or bitterness to do so. Unfortunately, fear can be really irrational at times, and it definitely has to be dealt with…

What have you been learning lately? About yourself? The world? Your kids? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Homeschool Confessions #4: Math

Hi. I’m a homeschool Mom of 3 boys, and a baby girl. I stay home and teach, clean, cook, etc. Sometimes I sit on the couch and delegate the chores while I’m nursing (or just sitting!) I read aloud to and with the kids nearly every day. We read straight from the bible, from a devotional book, and right now, from a book on stuff/ecology/economy/systems. It’s a good read. Lengthy, a little beyond the younger two, but a good one so far.

I was never a history buff, but I try to engage the boys in historical-type topics. I try to have them practice some sort of writing exercise almost daily. Sometimes we just focus on penmanship (which, for some odd reason, one of the boys is fighting tooth and nail). We have a weekly home ec day, where we just bake and clean and practice life skills without ever touching a textbook.

I love workbooks and worksheets and “busy” work. I like the kids to become proficient at a skill, and therefore will make them practice a lot. The new information doesn’t stop while we practice skills we already have, though. I just like seeing them put on paper that they really have something figured out. I like to encourage them to teach each other – like trickle down education. It’s pretty nifty.

We don’t do the same thing everyday. In fact, I change it up all the time. I’m still not sure what works best for the oldest, so instead of getting stuck in a rut, I change it up. The kids know they have school time every day, but they don’t always know if we’ll be working together, or sitting at the table, or what order they will do their subjects for the day.

I loathe math. Not adding and subtracting. Or even multiplication or division. I can handle fractions, decimals, and counting back change. But algebra makes me sick. I get a headache instantly and my brain becomes dumb. To combat this, I spent lots of time watching YouTube videos so I could help the oldest with his work. (Am I allowed to say that doing so sucked? No? Okay, then I won’t say it.)

Guess what I found? I found an online compilation of YouTube videos, with lots of online work, and tests, and it’s free. It starts with basic math and works up all the way to trigonometry and calculus. So now, I sit back and let the kids watch the YouTube videos, and then work the problems. This program even tells us when they are proficient with a skill! (Click here to check out the program! Note: I am not in any way affiliated with Khan Academy, and I receive nothing for using or recommending it. Just sharing something I found with you!)

My confession boils down to this: I am taking a “backseat” position with math. I am admitting that just because I homeschool, doesn’t mean I know everything (or even have to). Homeschooling means I know how to find and use resources and have vowed to teach my kids the same thing.

Have you ever taken a “backseat” position with a subject? Or anything in life?