The Long Break

So I came back to my blog because a friend was talking about starting up her own blog and I wanted to share mine with her.  It has been over a year since I last posted.  A lot has happened.  We moved…again!  But this time it was a local move because we were able to do something that we had never done before.  We bought a house!  Fifteen years and 4 kids later and we now have a home of our own!IMG_0413

It was a grueling search and you really don’t realize just how much paperwork you are going to have to fill out when you apply for a mortgage and then sign at closing!  But it was an awesome experience last year.

We have also been able to find a church home too and are plugging in more this year.  Two of our boys have the privilege to be able to go to the camp gatherings for their age group.  They are SO excited!  It has been rough for them since we moved and they are still opening up to their group and trying to make friends.

Our oldest son is going to be in high school this year.  I am SO not ready for that.  Thankfully, I am not alone on this journey.  There are many of my friends who are homeschooling their children through high school and I can always call my mom, who homeschooled my sister and I through high school.  Also, just one of the tools in my arsenal is a 4-year planner from The Well Planned Day.  It helps you plan out the high school years.  This is something that I am looking forward to using with him.  He is currently working on writing a book.  He loves to read and play minecraft when his studies are done.

Our second son will be entering the 4th grade and has expressed his desire to get back in to Karate or Tae-kwon-do.  We had to stop TKD when we moved from Pennsylvania 2 years ago and it is something he really enjoyed and misses.  Hopefully we can get him back into that program.

Our third son will be working on a modified kindergarten/1st grade.  Our suspicions were confirmed that he had some sensory issues and he was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder.  So now we have several days where we go to Occupational and Speech therapy.  His occupational therapist has integrated music therapy in his sessions which has helped him a lot.  My goal is to get a listening system for us at home, but since it is considered an alternative therapy, insurance doesn’t cover it.  This is frustrating because having him use it just a couple more times a week would solidify the benefits he receives at OT during the week.

Our daughter will be doing pre-k/k activities, plus sitting in with our family classes during the day.  She loves to do what her brothers do during school and insists on “school time”.  She loves to dance and play with her dolls and all things girly.  That said, she also plays with her brothers and their toys.  From Lego’s to action figures, she is all about playing with them.  She rough houses with them and when they try to get her, she goes back full force!  She love them so much and they love her too.  I foresee an interesting time when she wants to go on a date.  Daddy is one thing, but she has 3 older brothers who are VERY protective of their baby sister.

This year is Darren’s and mine 15th Anniversary.  I’m not sure what we plan on doing to celebrate, but we want to do something for this year.  We have been blessed during our 15 years.  It has taken a lot of work too. Two job layoffs, 1 cross-country move, 1 local move (basically 2 moves happened in 1 year), 4 children and a lot of fun/crazy times.  Keeping God first has been the key to making it through every challenge brought our way.  I am thankful that God brought me a man who loved the Lord.

I am really looking forward to this year.  So many great things have happened and continue to happen for our family.  The past couple of years have been full of changes and challenges, but God has brought us through them all.  It may often seem like there is so much darkness around us, but without it we can’t see the light.

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Blogging through the Alphabet – R is for Rest

Sometimes life is stressful.  Sometimes you get burned out.  What do you do as a homeschool mom (or dad) who feels stressed, burned out, or even burdened by homeschooling?  You REST! 

Now I don’t mean you sleep or anything like that, but you take a break.  Keeping up with schooling can often times be challenging.  Especially when there are doctors appointments, illnesses, life events, unexpected surprised that come your way. 

Sometimes it is necessary to take a “rest” or break from homeschooling and just spend time with each other.  Do fun things.  Go on hikes, explore the backyard, fieldtrips to the museums and more things than you can think of doing.

When I take a break with our kids it is sometimes needed.  But most of the time when we make it to our scheduled breaks.  If we don’t, I realize that I may be pressing too hard and need to take a step back.  Let life happen.  Kids learn through life as well.  After all, we are preparing them for LIFE!  Not some academic test.  (though those are necessary sometimes)

So don’t be afraid to take that “rest” from homeschooling and come back to it.  You will find yourself refreshed and ready to tackle the things you want to do with your children and not be so stressed out about it.