Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Remembering Why I Love This

I'm not going to do it.

Apologize for not posting in three months, I mean.

But please forgive me anyway.

We are here. I have just been too busy to take the time to post anything.  I am often writing, often thinking of things to write, but seldom publishing, for many, many reasons.-
One of the main reasons is that I am a wimp. I'm afraid I might  write something that unwittingly enlists me in the Mommy Wars.

Or that by posting pictures of my kids hard at work and actually engaged in what they are learning, someone will think homeschool is all sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows in the Mathews home and that it's all thunderstorms, chicken gizzards, and smog at their home.

Nothing could be further than the truth.  I try to be as real as real can be when I share what's going on around here.  When I share some of the highlights of our life, that is what they are.  Highlights. The good stuff.  Family- and our journey of home education- has many highlights.  But don't think we know what we're doing any more than you do.

I sat down to write this post a week ago and had to erase most of it.  I was so excited to share a few highlights about homeschooling.  Some reasons why I love it so much.  But then, as expected but still unexpectedly, the tides turned and I found myself frustrated with many aspects of this homeschooling lifestyle.

My kids are always HERE!  Always in my face. Always asking me questions. I cannot sit down to upload a few pictures and write a post without continually being assaulted with interruptions.  Interruptions are my pet peeve.  So I start these posts and never finish them because it's just not worth the frustration.

But I'm thankful for the reminders of why I love this way of life.  Like bounce houses on a school day.

 My nephew lives in Texas with his mom, but came to visit during his school vacation, which fell on a different week than school vacations here in Maine.  Because we have the perk of a flexible schedule, we were able to drop regular schooling to go on a field trip to the bounce house to spend time with him.

I call this PE.  And I count it as a school day.  I have the wonderful freedom to determine what an education is and to share it with my children.  School is a building.  Education is all around us.  Even in the mouth of a plastic crocodile.

I call this recess.  And socialization.  And family bonding. (And gambling for minors, too)

Homeschoolers are rebels in many ways.  Even amongst ourselves, we are nonconformists (the brave ones, that is!).  The reasons why we homeschool vary, as well as how we order our day, what we choose to teach our children, and how we choose to teach it.  We love different things about this way of life.

The introvert in me loves that when we go on field trips, the places we go are quieter and far less busy. Because we tend to go when public school is in session.  You will not catch us on many field trips when the public schools are on vacation.  Not that I'm trying to keep my children from those children. Not at all!  It's just kind of nice having a place mostly to yourself.

I love the learning that takes place even when we are travelling. We are big fans of audiobooks and audio dramas like Adventures in Odyssey.  We utilize our CD version of The Story of  the World Volume 1 which compliments what we are learning from books at home.  We listen to biographies of composers that came with our core curriculum.

I love that these children are with me all day, when I pause from my own agenda and disregard the interruptions. I can't believe the questions they ask and that I get to answer them.

Should we be afraid of death?

Why would someone kill their baby?

What's dating?

Do all children go to heaven?

I wouldn't want anyone else answering these questions for them but Josh and I.

So yes, it's hard most days.  It's mundane, especially in the long cold winter.  But I'm so glad I get to do this.