Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oh Where, Oh Where Has My Little Blog Gone, Oh Where Oh Where Can It Be?

I may have mentioned here once or twice that I Homeschool.  I am officially in the middle of our Back To School Week. That explains the low number of posts.  I have been scrambling for the last 4 weeks getting ready to school a 4th grader and 2nd grader.   I started on Monday and by Tuesday morning at 9:00 I was sobbing, pretty dramatically, as in slow breathing saying Hail Mary's before I responded to anyone just to insure what I said would not lead me straight to .....type of crying.
I have to walk you through this with me just so I remember my own pitfalls, lest I ever fall into them again.  It all started about 4 weeks ago..Do you remember?  I had decided to make a "school room".
A room that I could sit quietly with my sweet children, going over poetry, reciting multiplication tables, quizzing Latin vocab all the while my little people would be coloring in the corner mixing the correct combinations from the color wheel.  On my lap would be my sweet little resting her head on my shoulder while I went over phonograms.  This was my plan for the last 4 weeks.  This was my vision.  It was like, "If I build it THEY will come"!!!
They did not come.  I am not sure where I got that image.  My children have never been the sit quietly and let mama get something done type.  I am not sure why I thought if I put some cute pieces of furniture together and threw a carpet down, I would suddenly have toddlers who respected the concept of "quiet, quality education".
After my initial breakdown exactly one day into our new school year I realized this problem is not a toddler problem this is definitely a Mama problem.  This mama who loves to homeschool forgot that I have to plan the day not just around our school, but more importantly....around our family.
School needs to include Jack, Lucy and Priscilla.  I did not consider them while I was carefully laying out plans to get the girls into Notre Dame.  I just thought they would get the memo the night before school started and they would take care of the rest of their toddler years.  After my breakdown I prayed through the afternoon.  I was reminded that it IS up to me to form each of these little people...even the hard people.  The easy people are more fun...but they all need me to plan and participate in the goals I have for this family.

I realized I had done very little in the area of planning for the little people.  They need me too!! I don't want to Homeschool in spite of them ...I want to homeschool because of ALL OF THEM!!  It just takes more effort.  But I think it will be worth it. I have had a major transformation of heart in a short period of time.
I am now the PROUD director of 2 schools...The older girls school that will have to work its way around our little kids school.  All blended together...paint and glitter with multiplication tables and phonograms cards.
Little more work for mama...but more fun for all!!
Nothing more complicated than me just being a mom to ALL these kids.  Me trying to meet ALL their needs and trying to enjoy it even when I don't feel like it.  I will enjoy it...I have to!!
About 1 month ago my cousin called me and said she was going to homeschool.  She said one of her reasons was she wanted to have fun with her kids...even if she only did it for 1 year.  My first thought was, "Good luck with that"  Not that I don't have fun with my kids...but when I think of what keeps me homeschooling, "Having Fun" has not been on the list the last few years.  Isn't that awful? 
Well that one goal of hers has been vibrating in my mind since she said it.  I need to have FUN!!  I need to have our homeschool have fun as a goal..A BIG GOAL.  I need to plan for fun.  I think I needed to hear that.  I think God wants me to have that as my goal too. Why ?  Because I have replayed that one conversation over in my head more times than I can recall!!  I am pretty quick to catch on when it comes to listening to God's voice...ya think????
Well....long story short.  I am a recovering from a traumatic first week of school mama who misses her better half and has a lot of glitter to vacuum off the floor of that very sweet NOISY schoolroom!!!

p.s.  sorry about the total random pictures I included in this post.  As much as I would have liked to document my breakdown and fall into homeschool despair..I was unable and more importantly UNWILLING to snap a picture of my my nose flares when I am crying and that is not a pretty picture


  1. Lisa~
    First...(((Hug)))....and second....keep hold of that vision!! I truly believe that if you build it, they will come...they just may straggle....and now you know that you have to tweek it for the little people ;0. I am working on my kids' lesson plans this week....I may email you after we start, cause right now, I have a vision and nothing could possibly go wrong....LOL but we both know that is not how life works!! Hang in there and remember that you staying home and being with your children is WAY more valuable than ABC's and 123's....they are only this age once....they will learn that other stuff....Hang in there....


  2. "I have to plan the day not just around our school, but more importantly....around our family."

    You hit the nail on the proverbial head, Lisa. I've learned to say, we have school at HOME, not home at school. HOME is first--everything flows out of that.

    You've probably already figured this out, but you need to consider the weakest members needs before the strongest in planning your days. That means you start with Miss Priscilla Mae and go up from there. Molly and Emily might have to work more independently than you, or they, would like for now because, as you've discovered, if your "little school" isn't functioning well, your "big school" doesn't stand a chance.

    Include in your planning, ways to have M & E work more independently. I schedule one period (45-60 min) a day to work privately with each child. My kids are getting older and don't even require that much most days. So where you can count on some quiet time, like PM's nap time, schedule your M & E time there. If you can grab a little more at another time, grab it, but don't count on it.

    M & E can understand you NEED to be with your little ones. But the other way around doesn't work, obviously. M & E can understand planned time--this is when Mommy meets with me. The little ones can't.

    I still have to instruct my much older than yours children not to interrupt when I'm working with another child. "You don't know what to do next? Read a book until I can help you." "You need help with your math? I'm sorry I can't help you now. Please wait until I'm done working with P." This teaches children patience and generosity (letting others go first), as well as independence. Many times when I can't get to one immediately, I'll hear later, "I don't need help anymore, I figured it out myself."

    Hang in there, Lisa. You remind me of myself. I'm sure ND will be in your family's future too :).

    Oh, about the FUN. I wouldn't worry about it now. You remember what we were told as teachers? "Don't smile until Thanksgiving." I don't look for much fun until around Thanksgiving break. You need a couple months of hardcore slogging to have the foundation that merits a little loosening up. Fun is a reward, not a requirement.


  3. God Bless You and your Wisdom!! How can I thank you? I am so glad you posted on the blog that way I can go back and re-read this wonderful bit of advice. You and Jane are the reason I am doing what I am doing..I know God had his hand in it too...through your help!! Love you forever!!!