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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!

Hi!

Hi, I’m here. I’m alive. And I’m thriving!!!
Sorry I’ve fallen short in blogging, been busy busy. Lots of work (daycare and house). My girlfriend Ashley has been stopping in almost every Monday and Wednesday, her eldest daughter is in preschool so instead of her heading home and us chatting on the phone she’s been coming over. I don’t know if she even realizes how much her visits have helped lift my spirits 🙂 Some days we just sit and sip coffee and talk about house hunting (for her), or house organizing (for both), and all about our wonderful kids. Her eldest is 8days older than Joy, and her youngest is 9days older than Jacob (although celebrated 8days apart 3 of every 4 years). So it’s kind of fun to see them playing. And for naps it works out perfect as Jacob gets up from his morning nap when she arrives, after lunch Reegan (her youngest) goes for her nap, and when she wakes up and they leave Jacob goes for his second (if he has a second). This past Thursday she kept her eldest home from school and came over for the entire day. We got to purging/cleaning the girls room and the toy room! (we recently switched the girls to bunk beds and well…. lets just say the toy room got dumped on! lol). She’s the help I’ve been needing for purging! I’ve actually really got into the swing of it again and am enjoying the purge!! This coming week she’s going to come over and help me finish it off. The only stuff that will be left to purge is our storage boxes (but that’s for whenever).
I also have a fabulous group of mom’s on facebook. Mom’s from all across Canada who were due in March 2012. I love them and all their advise, however I found to much of my time was wasted on line. So now I only go on in the evenings once the kids are in bed and the house is picked up. I feel so much freer! I have my morning devotions with the Lord as well and I feel as though He’s telling me to step back and he’s given me a disinterest in facebook.
So all in all I’m feeling good! Loving my life! One day last week I even took the entire day and completely devoted it to playing with the kids ~ no chores! I made sure the house was good the night before and once they were in bed I tidied up from the day. It was a ‘princess’ party (with one prince), I have pics and I’ll post them perhaps tomorrow night. It was a fabulous day, and although a chore free day isn’t always possible I’m enjoying taking the time to just ‘hang out’ with the kids more and devote  (more) undivided attention to them.

Our prince charming 🙂

What? Already?!?

I keep counting the sleeps that are left until Grams (my mom) comes home on my fingers with Joy. She has fun as she’s learning to count and loves my mom.
Sunday morning during Breakfast Joy started counting down on her fingers (random numbers as she can’t count down yet), then she got to 1 and held up her one finger and said “One sleep and Grams home. Yup”. Orlund and I had a good little giggle over her seriousness. I told her she was right we were getting closer, and that NEXT Sunday was when Grams would be home. Orlund’s eyes went as big as an owls and said “REALLY? already?”. I asked him about it to find out that my mom coming makes it so much more real that baby is coming soon too. That’s right, baby is coming.
I’ve noticed that my body is getting ready for baby’s arrival with the ‘increase’ in aches and pains that are only experienced at the end of a pregnancy. Fun. but exciting all the same.

I decided that I needed more room in the baby’s room so sorted through all the girls outgrown boxes and was able to get rid of just over half of the amount of boxes. Yes there are still many boxes but a whole lot less than there was. I also started to sort through all the stuff that has just been shoved into his room to be organized. It looked like an explosion had gone off. When Orlund first saw in the room he said “I sure hope the girls didn’t do that”. Nope, just me. After he found out that baby is indeed coming soon he asked me to hurry and get the room set up. I told him it would take me 30minutes to do. Today I put myself to the test and sorted through the remainder of stuff, set up the change table and just finished the room off. It took me 30minutes + a quick vacuum. I think that’s pretty impressive. so now all I need to do is fold some receiving blankets that I just finished washing and put them away (spot all ready), and change the bedding on the crib, I didn’t change it as the girls were playing in the crib and I figured might as well leave it so it’ll stay fresh.

Today once Olivia goes for her nap I’m going to tackle Orlund and my room. I figure it should only take me 30minutes as well to get all my piles off the floor (laundry and some stuff to run downstairs, as well as clearing off my dresser/vanity and night stand). Once that is done I will either take a little nap too or finish packing my hospital bag (baby stuff is in there, just nothing for me).

For those of you without Facebook I am doing a ‘poll’ to guess when baby arrives. He is due Feb 28/29, he’s already head down but not ‘engaged’. Joy was born 10days late at 8lbs 6oz and Olivia was born 7days late at 8lbs. If you’d like a chance to win a little gift give a guess at his birth date and birth weight (actually I’ll allow you to make 2 guesses).  You can make your guesses up until my due date or I go into labour.

Another ‘thing’. My Daycare boy’s dad asked me when dropping him off last time if Sol hits a lot while here. I said no. he went on to tell me about a trip the family had just taken. I guess whenever Sol was with other kids he was hitting them and hitting his parents/brother. They had to get a room in the back corner of the hotel because he was so noisy, and they even had people complain because of his noise. I guess he was also jumping off the beds, getting into everything (coffee etc) and unrolling all the toilet paper. And both the boys wake up so early (5am) that their mom took them and drove around trying to find somewhere to buy a cup of coffee. That’s just crazy to me. His dad said he wished he could see what he’s like when he’s here.  Got me to thinking. They must not have strict rules at home, or at least don’t enforce them. I have set rules, they don’t change. No jumping on/off furniture. It’s our rule at home, at friends and pretty much anywhere. I know the boys are allowed to do that at home, so why wouldn’t they when out? makes me realize just how important having the same rules when at home and when out are to have. Our kids always know what’s expected of them, it never changes (of course it adapts to different situations). They try to stretch the limits, test us and are just kids, but they know when not to push and when to stop it. When we go to a hotel, go out of town, we want to relax. I can’t imagine that Sol’s dad or mom got much relaxing in (especially not together).  Sol knows my rules and honestly behaves just like one of my kids would. Sure sometimes he doesn’t like the rule so will ask for his mom/dad or to go home, but all daycare kids do that once in a while. He plays with them without hitting or hurting the girls (of course the occasional scrap arises but that’s to be expected). I honestly think his dad would be beyond shocked to see how calm, rule abiding he is when he’s here. And honestly it’s not like I did anything special, I was just always consistent. If I told him/reminded him of the rules and he chose to break them again (within a reasonable time frame) I’d put him in time out or if he hurt someone I might give his hand a smack. But really it was usually just a matter of reminding him of the rules and making sure I stuck to the same ones I always have. And the rules are the same for all the kids.

Well that’s my update for now. Oh and also Orlund told me to stop making/freezing meals because we don’t have enough room in the freezer anymore 🙂 Never thought that day would come. LOL. Well I’d better get Livi down for her nap.

Prayers please…

Yeah, I’m bad at not finishing my blogging about our trip. however something has come up, and while I’m not willing to share it on such a public place as Facebook I am willing to share it with my readers. Most of you, I believe are Christians and pray, please pray.
Friday we went in and had our 19week Ultrasound. Baby was dancing the entire 45minutes it took for the technician to get all the measurements she needed (both the girls did this as well). Afterwards baby had fallen asleep so we only got to view him/her for 8minutes as we saw all we were going to see. It was exciting and we video taped it as a nice keep sake.
This weekend was Thanksgiving ~ Happy Thanksgiving everyone~ Talk about heart burn! I’ve been ‘sleeping’ on the couch in agony for the past 3 nights.
Tuesday (today)~ I was exhausted and the kids decided to be feisty and Joy ended up with a swollen lip. Olivia doesn’t seem to be feeling well as she’s crying and throwing fits all morning. Olivia has also learned how to say “NO”. Yup she’s at that stage… fun.. Anyway, to the point of my blog. This morning I got a call from our Doctors office, they wanted to call and book an appointment with me to go over the Ultrasound. *gasp*. With both the girls we didn’t have to go over anything! So of course like any pregnant woman I broke down crying and sobbing (and of course praying) there must be something wrong. I got the idea to call the office again and ask if this was going to be an appointment that my husband would need to come to or not.. The receptionist had to ask the Doctor. She told me that they saw something on the Ultrasound that will require more tests to be done (or more lab work?). So this is an informative appointment (no hubby needed). We will be discussing what they saw (or thought they saw), what tests we will need to do etc etc. SO please PRAY for my baby, uterus, placenta all that baby stuff. That everything is normal and natural. I don’t mind doing more tests, and I’m praying and believing that those tests will prove my baby is completely healthy and another miracle of God.
Thank you for your prayers. I’ll keep you updated.

To my blog readers only…..

Thus far, the news has not reached Facebook…. and Once Orlund and I get around to taking the picture we so desire to use to announce the news, you, my (few) blog readers get to hear the news first…………………

Baby #3 is on it’s way!!! Yup. I am in the throws of ‘morning’ sickness (who ever came up with that name wasn’t obviously a pregnant woman). I am taking 4 dicletin a day, wearing pressure bands while riding in the car and all in all couldn’t be happier to be pregnant again!
When are we due? February 28, 2012! Could be a leap baby 😉 Hopefully baby is a boy…. but we would be blessed if it turned out to be a baby girl. I usually seem to bake my babies a bit longer so most likely a March baby! Olivia will be exactly the age Joy was when she came along!

ps~ the news will be reaching facebook in a day or two, so please hold off any fb comments until then ~ THANKS! It’s been announced 🙂

#3 !!

perhaps less time too?

I was visiting with a girl friend of mine last night at Mom’s night out and she mentioned to me some struggles she deals with (in regards to house and kids, time really). And I told her about how I wish I could just get my house clean, and keep it clean. Why can’t I have what so many other people have? Umph as I call it. You’d think that if I’m not spending the time cleaning than perhaps I’m spending it playing with the kids. You’d think. I do play with them. I do clean. But I don’t feel like either is enough time put towards them. I think I’m spending it online. What a horrible thing. I blog (usually while kids are napping ~ or like now pretending to nap), I go on Facebook (feels like a connection to the world outside my house), I read other blogs (check them daily even 2x’s daily), and I have other websites I visit to read whatnot on. I try to do it all only while kids sleep. But the truth of the matter is, I’m addicted and I come online more often than not. NOT GOOD.
I have one friend who blogs regularly, almost daily. Today I just read that she is now stopping her blog. It’s gone as of tomorrow morning. Danica I will miss you!! You truly inspire me and help me be a better mom. I just wish I could write as beautifully as you do. Although I will miss her stories (even philosophy Fridays), I completely understand the desire to not put so much time into blogging. I have decided I do want to keep blogging. However I’m going to cut down on all my other online endeavors. I’m going to make myself have Umph, get the house the way I want it and spend that time with my kids. They are only little for a short time. I don’t want to look back and feel like I missed out on their childhood because I was online. That’s not why we decided I would stay home with them. We decided for me to stay home to raise them, and I want to raise them right.
So while Danica moves on to other things, I too have decided to move on. I have wanted to be a certain way since I got married. I keep getting there, or almost there, then falling back behind. But I’m going to just keep on trying! Flylady was working to help me reach my goals, and now I need to press on and get back into it. What is something you’ve been putting off doing? Or something you want to do?

Just be Thankful.

Do you ever feel like you think to much about yourself and your own situation? I do. I know I think of myself to much sometimes and sometimes not enough.
The start to this year has been a rough one to say the least(Thankfully not as rough as it could be.). I don’t really remember January, most of it was spent with my family and us fighting off colds and flu bugs. The end of January, start of February, Olivia had her UTI. One week in hospital (bummer). Orlund worked every SINGLE day after that except for two days for the remainder of February. March has swung around. The first week we started to get back into the swing of things (I will post soon about my struggles in that time). Then this Monday Orlund headed to Vancouver for training. He returned at 9:30pm Thursday night. Then Today (Friday) we spent the day as a family as we were both off work, then at 3:00pm his dad picked him up for the Men’s Conference. The conference is supposed to be 24hours, however tack on the 3 hours before it starts that he was with his dad and the at least 1 hour drive back home after the 24hours and we are looking at at least 28hours. Joy has been running a fever over the past week, and Olivia finally popped out another tooth (still working on two more).
Lets just say, it’s been a long week.
Tonight I lost it. ~ Yeah I get the award for worst mom moment here~ I finally got Olivia to sleep and came out to the living room. Then I heard Joy opening the door. She opens it noisily as she can hardly reach the door knob. Olivia woke up. sigh. I went in and calmed Olivia down. Joy then informed me she needed to go pee ~ hence why she was  trying to escape their room. I rushed her out to the bathroom. rushed? sure. Hard to rush a half sleepy kid. Olivia woke up screaming and Joy wasn’t moving fast enough. We got to the bathroom where I lost it. I screamed “Dam it!”  then pulled my hair and just screamed….. yeah…smooth mom…. I try to never lose it like this in front of anyone, but I was feeling exhausted, it wasn’t even really due to what was going on so much as I was feeling sorry for myself that Orlund wasn’t around to help… Poor Joy! She started balling her eyes out!!! I apologized and snuggled her letting her know it wasn’t her fault and I wasn’t mad at her. She then ‘told’ me why she was crying by saying “Dam it”….GREAT! first I screw up royally  then she learns a bad word from me! The good news she was still able to go potty and soon enough they were both asleep again.
The point of sharing that story is ~ I then went on facebook and complained about wanting our lives to return to normal…. A friend replied saying; “What’s normal? I forget what that feels like.”. Her husband has MS. It has turned their lives upside down and to say the least~ I have nothing to complain about in comparison! It got me thinking. My Cousin’s daughter has had Cancer (Thank you JESUS!) so their lives are anything but normal. They just finished the radiation and are now home waiting until it’s time to take the next MRI. And Japan! Thousands of people wont be able to return to ‘normal’ anytime soon. Who am I to Complain?
THANK YOU JESUS! That although I’m tired and want my husband to be home with us, that we have it a lot easier than so many people around us. THANK YOU GOD for keeping us safe and sound and healthy. There is so much to be Thankful for! I have two beautiful healthy daughters, a wonderful hard working husband (who treats me like a Queen), a wonderful family (and family in law), a roof over our head, a car to drive, work etc etc etc. The list is endless.
How are you doing? Do you see what God has given you to be thankful for?

Amusing..

At the moment I am pretending I don’t know Joy is in Olivia’s crib keeping her from sleeping… it’s almost 8pm, they both should be asleep… I’ll go in in a few minutes. Orlund is working late so I can pretend I don’t hear them for a bit longer.

Tonight I had an amusing, weird, strange phone call here it is~
Shortly after Orlund headed off to work, the phone rang. A Woman was on the line “Would Orlund happen to be home?” she asked.
“No, sorry could I take a message?” I thought, perhaps it’s his work calling because he isn’t there yet?.
“Well you see,Do you know Bob Long?”
“yes”  I was thinking to myself I do know him, but we haven’t talked in a year or so.
She continued “I’m trying to, well, um….mumble jumble” finally she started making sense (kinda).”If you have Bob’s phone number it would be easiest”.
“Sorry I don’t have it, I haven’t talked to Bob in a few years” I answered.
“The thing is, he sold my son his motor bike and now I need some papers from him for selling it, do you know if he lives on ‘such a such’ street still?”
“I have no idea”
“I have his number from the buy and sell add, and he lived there”
“I really don’t know, you could try the number. I have him on Facebook but that’s about it” I explained.
“Well you see, I looked him up on Facebook when I couldn’t find his number in the phone book, and saw that he was friends with Orlund. I could find Orlund’s number in the phone book so I called you”.
“I’m sorry I don’t know how you could get in touch with him, why don’t you send him a message on Facebook?” I was thinking of anyone I could get his number from, I didn’t want to give out any phone numbers either.
“I don’t know how to do that, do you think you could send him a message for me? Tell him it’s Susie Sue regarding the Motor Bike and my number is…. Thanks”.
“sure…..”
That was that, she hung up and was gone. It just so happened she’d called while Joy was napping, so I decided to email Bob right away (if you didn’t guess I made up the names).
A few minutes later she called back “Bob called me, so you don’t need to message him anymore. Thanks”
“I already sent the message”
“Oh, okay, thanks. Bye”
…..weird….
I then tonight I checked my Facebook message. Bob had emailed me back. He was apologizing for me getting dragged into this. Apparently the guy bought the bike from Bob, but never changed it into his name. Poor Bob had the cops knock on his door at 2am one time questioning him about a robbery as the bike was seen at the crime scene. Bob even had to go and sign it out of impound! Then this guy (strung out on drugs) killed a pedestrian crossing the road (while on the bike), so now his mom is trying to sell some of the parts and just needed some more papers or something.
Very Weird. I didn’t mind helping out, it wasn’t like she was knocking at my door. Glad it will finally be over for Bob and his wife too. It makes me think though. I mean she found our number by looking at Bob’s friends on Facebook, then randomly picked someone and checked if they were in the phone book…….