My IMPERFECT Homeschooling Journey

Thoughts from the road...Texas Homeschool Coalition Association - Arlington

One of the perks of this job... hugging on beautiful families all over the country!

Thursday arrived and I was back in the beautiful state of TX, speaking at one of my favorite conferences (THSC) of the season. This year I had been asked to share my homeschooling journey (from a mom who has been there) with potential homeschooling parents. Since I was slated as the second speaker of the day, I decided it would be wise to listen to the speaker before me. I sat in the back and enjoyed hearing Frederic Gray share about his family’s beautiful life of homeschooling. He shared of leading his family and seeing struggles as an opportunity to stretch he and his wife. He did a fabulous job spurring these parents on to accept the challenge and join the homeschool movement. As Frederic began wrapping up his talk, panic set in…I knew that parts of my talk were in direct contrast to Frederic’s and I feared that I was the absolute wrong person to follow such a positive message.thscblogIf I am being honest (and you should know by now, that’s what you get with me) I haven’t seen every struggle as a chance to be stretched. Sometimes, I have seen my struggles as just that… STRUGGLES. I am sure I was eventually stretched by them, but usually after some type of fit had been thrown. I knew I planned on sharing that there had been days I wanted to chase down that yellow school bus, put my kids on there as quickly as possible, drive to the nearest tennis court and play all day long! I knew that I planned on sharing that some days I questioned if I was screwing up my kids, my family and honestly feared that I had made a really, big mistake.

If you are a THSC board member reading this, rest assured that I never discouraged the participants from homeschooling, but I knew my journey of homeschooling had been FAR from perfect. I knew I had to be truthful. I wanted to share with these parents that the woman standing before them was just a hot mess, trying to live out this homeschooling gig with purpose and passion. My prayer was, that just maybe my honesty might encourage a hot mess sitting in the audience to give it a go, even if she/he felt completely unworthy of the challenge.

thscI shared that I believed homeschooling was a personal calling, a right that I was thankful we had, but not a requirement. I shared that I believed God gave each couple their children to parent in the way they were convicted. I shared that homeschooling did not guarantee that they would raise successful, caring, spiritual adults. I shared that homeschooling would not shelter their children from “the world”. I shared that my children had been exposed to many things; from mean girls, drugs, cheating, etc… in our homeschooling circles. I shared that I believed our role as parents was to help children become who they were meant to be and that didn’t happen simply by homeschooling. Many parents raise amazing adults that were schooled at home, in public schools, in private schools or a combination of all three. I encouraged these couples to be grace filled with their children and themselves and to refrain from parenting out of fear. Lastly, I shared that I wouldn’t change this imperfect journey for anything. Really, I wouldn’t! 

I know that many were spurred on by the steadiness and strength of Frederic’s message last Thursday afternoon, I sure was. However, if only one mom or one dad could relate to my hot mess reality and dared to homeschool anyway, it was worth my vulnerability and honesty. 

Next up… FPEA in Orlando!!

To the mom (and dad) Parenting out of FEAR…

Thoughts from the road - Indiana Home Educators Association

A few days after I returned from Hearts at Home, it was time to pack up four of my children (and all their stuff) and head out to the Indiana Home Educators Association (IAHE) conference in Indianapolis, IN. I had the privilege of speaking four times at IAHE this year. I spoke about language arts, motherhood, lifelong learning and our curriculum, A Year of Playing Skillfully. It is not unusual to have moms and dads come up and speak to me after my talks, but one particular group of parents grabbed my heart last Saturday afternoon.

meandmybabies

I love taking my babies on the road with me!

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Thoughts from the Road – Hearts at Home National Conference

How a hot mess beginning leads to a faithful ending …

hahdice

The trips are starting to take their toll. It seems as the weeks pass, I find myself falling further behind in life. My kids miss home cooked meals, my friends are questioning my existence and I am tired. However, when you KNOW that you are living out your purpose, it is all worth it. It IS worth it. This weekend was a beautiful confirmation that I am exactly where I need to be.

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Midwest Homeschool Convention – Thoughts from the Road

A great question about A Year of Playing Skillfully...

One of the most common questions we get asked at The Homegrown Preschooler booth is what makes our curriculum, A Year of Playing Skillfully different from other curriculums on the market. During the very busy Midwest GHC, I seemed to get this question more than usual. I thought I would take a few moments and answer it here:

View More: http://pitmanphotography.pass.us/homegrownpreschooler

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