Category Archives: Church

The truth about homeschooling…

I’m just a regular 30 year old mother of 3. Nothing makes me stand above the rest or special (other than being God’s daughter, but you get the point). I like to dress up and do my nails. Being able to do my make up is special and something I do on special occasions, and yes Church is a special occasion.
I was never very good in school, averaging C+’s through most my high school years. So why would I want to home school my kids?

When Orlund and I first got married we discussed casually about what kind of schooling we would like our kids to do. He started school at the ‘church school’. It was a classroom setting however basically a home school idea, then after a number of years the church decided to close the school and he finished school in the Christian school. I always attended public school. I didn’t want my kids in the Christian school. He didn’t want them in public school, he then suggested that perhaps we could home school them…..HOME SCHOOL? Like I have to TEACH them? This idea was so foreign to me, weren’t home schooled kids weird? I don’t want weird kids (weirder than they will already be from being MY offspring that is). I completely dismissed the idea.

Fast forward to expecting Joy. I made a new friend, Rosanne, she was home schooled and not weird. That helped me believe not all home schooled kids are weird. But still that’s a LOT of responsibility on ME, especially since I wasn’t good in school. Orlund made it sound so easy “just read ahead of them, you can do it”… I started to open up to the idea, but it was still very frightening to me. However we had attended some small groups via our Church and I started to realize that a lot of what public schools teach kids is NOT ok with me. So I agreed the kids could go to the Christian school. Problem? It’s a private school so costs a lot of money.

Joy was 4years old. Preschool age. NO WAY was I going to put her IN a preschool. That was never a question, however I realized that I needed to start making decisions about what exactly we wanted to DO for her schooling. I set up at time to go and visit a (homeschooling) mom from our Church whose kids are all in the upper elementary grades and high school. That meeting completely opened my eyes! I found out that there are actually SET UP curriculum’s so that you don’t have to ‘wing’ it, unless you want to. You can ‘enroll’ under a school which provides you with funding and a ‘teacher’ who you email weekly and they come to your house meet with your child, write report cards etc. You can ask them questions, find resources, and all that wonderful jazz! There was someone to make sure we were on track and it wouldn’t ALL be up to me (or at least I wont find out later I screwed her up for life!).

Now we’d decided to home school. Originally back when I was a doubter my mom was too. she was very much against it at the time. However her life changed drastically since then (moving to Thailand and whatnot). I ordered Preschool for Joy in January of her preschool year, then found out mom was going to home school her kids and use the same curriculum as I! (and I didn’t suggest it to her, another missionary did!). It was fun for us to learn about it together. Now she was on board but that doesn’t mean everyone is.

It’s really no bodies business how we choose to raise our children or the decisions we make for them. However that doesn’t stop people from asking or voicing their opinions. My brother for one is completely against us homeschooling. And he voiced it very clearly to me one night when he took me out for a special ‘date’. I was crushed that he thought (or thinks) I’m doing something wrong for my children, however he’s not going to pursued me otherwise. He doesn’t have children, he doesn’t have the beliefs I have, and he doesn’t honestly know anything about homeschooling. He’s one of the people who think my kids wont be socialized. Socializing is dependent on the child (extrovert or introvert), on the way the parents raise said child and other factors. It has NOTHING to do with weather they attend school with other kids or not, or get to go on field trips with other kids (we do cool stuff with the homeschooling group!).  There are many p0eople who don’t agree with home schooling, but those are usually the people who are ignorant to what homeschooling is actually like and about.

We decided to home school all of our children until Jacob is starting Grade 1. I know I’d love to home school them right through, however financially isn’t possible. So I’ll take all I can. This year Joy was in Kindergarten. I went through Chemo treatments/surgery and numerous dr’s apts. She will be finishing the Kindergarten curriculum in the middle of July. Which is fine be me as then we will continue learning through the summer. I was able to do school throughout it all! How wonderful!

Want to know what our day is like?
8am-9am breakfast/chores
9am -11:30am School (break down after this)
11:30-noon make lunch
noon – 1pm eat lunch/clean up
1-2pm free play
2pm Jacob nap, girls play (mommy chores etc)
4pm Jacob up, kids play, mommy makes dinner
blah blah blah evening

School ~ go downstairs, if beautiful out set up table outside in backyard. (this order changes~) Read read-a-loud stories. Read, answer questions science (do experiments). Math, play with blocks and write in math book (she’s good at math!). Writing; she practices writing. we work on phonics and she reads some simple sentences/words to me. PE; we go and play outside (different games etc). We do crafts and games when we feel like it. Teach them new life skills.
I said we spend from 9am-11:30am doing school. In fact other than the extra’s (experiments, games, PE stuff) school will usually take 30min-1hour. The rest is just play time.

Homeschooling is a challenge. Some days I just want to pull my hair out and scream! (sometimes I do!). Then some days you are just bursting at the seams with pride! You get so excited at some new accomplishment they just achieved. I wont lie, it can be very difficult some days. Other days it feels like you could go on forever. I enjoy this challenge, and I truly LOVE teaching my kids. Homeschooling isn’t for everyone, I believe all children could be home schooled, but it isn’t always the right ‘cup of tea’ for some people. I respect that. I respect that you send your child to the Christian school, or the public school. Just please respect my decision as well. I guess I get tired of hearing bashing on facebook all the time, and usually it’s about stuff that isn’t anyone else’s business ~ is your son circumcised or not. Do you spank your children or not. It’s honestly no one else’s business!

Mom’s Night out.

I wanted to tell you all about a fabulous event I attend once a month, it’s called “mom’s night out”. It basically is held one night a month at a different restaurant at 6pm. No kids. No husbands. Sound fun? It is!
I’ve had people say to me that this ‘night out’ must consist of a lot of gossip. I mean lets face it, there are usually 5-15 women out for dinner. We must gossip all night right? How about I tell you what Mom’s night out means to me, and you tell me if it’s all about gossip….
First things first, Dinner out at a restaurant. Who doesn’t love that? You get to choose whatever you want to eat/drink. You don’t have to cook it or clean up after it. Dinner out is always fun even with the kids. BUT, when you don’t have kids, it’s even funner! When you are a mom, out for dinner with your kids you have ample to keep you busy ~ Do they have to go potty? (usually just as your food arrives) did they soil their diaper? Are they being to noisy for the other diners? Are they making a mess? Eating nicely? You order fries as your side, but really you’d rather a salad ~ but kids like fries. Our girls are very well behaved, however they can get to be a handful because well….restaurants are boring for kids.
So dinner out without kids is fun. Dinner out with the husband is fun, however really if you are a SAHM like me what do you have to talk to him about? he listens to me every single day. It’s nice to have a fresh set of ears to ramble on to.
We talk about our kids. Yup we do. Is that gossip? I don’t think so… We talk about milestones they made/missed, struggles in school, at home, etc. We all give advise and comfort one another in the decisions we’ve made. It helps to know you aren’t such a bad parent after all. We talk about work, school, housekeeping. I found out I’m not the only person who makes lists to do everyday! Nice to know I’m not as weird as I thought I was 😉
Sure you know, I’ll admit it. Sometimes gossip does come up. I think rather rarely. I mean really, can you see 15 ladies sitting out at a restaurant gossiping? Rather hard to do. We are human so gossip pops up, usually though, just if you are carpooling and you need some advise on a relationship.
I’ve heard some ladies say they don’t want to come, just because they figure it will all be gossip. I feel sorry for them. They are missing out on a web of friendships. I find after Mom’s night out I feel uplifted. Alive. Ready to face whatever life throws at me for another month.
I thank Jamie who organizes and reserves the place and time. All the fabulous ladies who attend, and help me with all my life throws at me. And of course my Fabulous husband who takes care of our precious beautiful little girls. Thanks Hunny!
If you are a mom living in my town, you don’t have to attend our Church to attend our Mom’s night out! Just pop me a message and I’ll email you the info (when I have it) for the next one! We love having new ladies to make connections with, it’s a friendly environment and you’re sure to have fun!!

To excited?

Oops. I’ll back up before I’ll explain my oops moment.
Today has been one of those, test your patients, drive you nuts, is it over? kind of days. The only thing that helped me through was knowing that tonight is Mom’s night out. A night that mom’s from our Church (and their friends ~ out reach opportunity) get together and enjoy a hot dinner without the hubby or kids. It’s nice. It REALLY is. Well the boys just got picked up so I started to get ready. Well Joy and Olivia started begging for a snack (sad to say it that way, but they sound like they are begging). So I sat them up with some Cucumber and Tomatos to munch on until Orlund gets home and makes them dinner. I also told Joy that once she was done the veggies then she could have some Cheese. Well I went to the bathroom and got myself ready, makeup on, hair done, dressed. Joy came in and showed me she was chewing a cucumber (yummy), so I followed her out to the dining room. Figured she was telling me she was eating it. Well I wish I had of had my camera. I came in to discover OOPS I didn’t buckle Olivia in! She was sitting cross legged in the middle of our dining room table! She had found a pencil and looked like she was looking for a piece of paper to draw on. Guess I was to excited to get ready and get going! She is now happily eating her food, safely strapped into her highchair. Joy is harassing me asking for more cheese….sigh…. 2hours… just 2 more hours…

Much better…

Well after my last post I should write that today was a much MUCH better day 🙂 Thank you Jesus!
Last night I found I couldn’t sleep. I was wide awake. WIDE awake. I haven’t felt that wide awake since before I got pregnant with Joy!! It felt great…. the only problem was it was after bedtime. I couldn’t make any noise. I couldn’t use this wide awakeness for progress. (yes awakeness is a word in Jenn Land). We went to bed at 11pm. I stayed up wide awake until 1:30am. I made a prayer list (specifically of babies, mommies and pregnancies ~ the devil sure has been attacking). I prayed over the list as a whole and individually. I spent some time with the Lord. Then surprisingly enough I was still wide awake (you know what I mean if you’ve ever tried to pray before falling asleep, you usually fall asleep before you say Amen). So I turned my computer on in hopes mom would be online. Nope. So I emailed her. puttered around online. The girls were up a bunch of times, so they also kept me going. Finally I decided I should try going back to sleep. And I did rather quickly, and slept GREAT!
This morning the girls and I went in the back yard, hoping to play in the pool ~ ice! So we came inside. I thought I had the boys at 10am, but nope, it was 11am. So I baked bread. Today was my day to take a meal to some new parents in our Church (Baby born on Tuesday! He’s so cute!). Once the boys arrived I made lunch while baking a desert (turns out using whole grain flour doesn’t work so good in squares). I gave Sol a bunch of time outs but over all it was a good day with them.
My Dad popped over just as the boys were being picked up. So I scooped his car to drop off the meal, then returned to enjoy dinner with him and the girls. (Orlund went on a hike with buddies until 10pm). Then we enjoyed a coffee and he headed home just as I put the girls down. They went down surprisingly well. Bonus! Then I went to have a bath, and decided the tub REALLY needed a scrub, so I scrubbed it. It was draining slow, so I dug out gunk from the drain. While I was doing that my mom called on the phone! It’s always an extra special treat when she calls. We visited then decided we should Skype as it’s free. So we did that, while I enjoyed a bubble bath (I know weird to do, but whatever. I needed the bath). So after a rather short soak, and a good visit with mom I decided to watch a movie. I didn’t like any of the choices I had, but decided on “how to train your dragon”. It’s a ‘kid’ show. My kids wont watch it until they are like 13, but none the less my brother gave it to me. And I like it! It’s cute! Orlund came home, he’s looking at his hiking pics, and all in all it’s been one of those days that at the end of, you wouldn’t mind repeating tomorrow…..Tomorrow will be even better!

Random, but cute. Our little helpers.

~~ I learned a few new things this week, 1- before promising a meal to someone, make sure you have the car to deliver it. 2- not everyone can be so last minute as me (which is completely okay!). 3- it’s more work than I thought to plan the meals, but I think next time I’ll be better prepared……Wish me luck! I do truly LOVE being able to bless others in this way, it’s just been a BIG learning curve for me these past few days. 🙂