Ponderings, Fresh Starts, and Getting Real

I took the kids out to buy school supplies yesterday. Even though they don’t go away to school, picking out supplies to replenish our school supply stash has become a tradition. I have to confess that I love fresh, new school supplies as much or more than the kids.

Homeschool fresh starts

I love the tradition part of getting school supplies as well. Things have changed over the years though. My 15 year old almost opted to stay home yesterday. He’s driving now and stretching his independent wings. I okayed his choice and inwardly sighed. But his little sister talked him into it with threats of tears. I didn’t exactly condone the guilt trip, but it worked.

No matter the reason he decided to go, I was supremely happy to have all four kids along for school supply shopping. Even when that very mature 15 year old decided to climb in the back of the buggy, almost turning it over and smashing the little sister who wanted him along in the first  place.

I think the reason that I love new school supplies so much is that they signify a new start. Clean binders, notebooks that haven’t been written in, pens that aren’t running out of ink- they all symbolize the potential present for our new school year. I love it!

You might have noticed that there are some fresh start changes around the blog as well.

As I was thinking about the fresh, new school year, I started thinking about this blog. I looked back and realized that I have posts from 2009! My children were 3,4,8, and 10 then. Homeschooling looked lots different. (You can see one of those early posts if you promise not to snort your drink out all over your computer or phone as you laugh hysterically.) This year I have children who are 17, 15, 12, and 11. Life and homeschooling are much changed.

And so I’ve changed some things about the blog to reflect those changes that I’ve had and that have happened in our homeschooling family. I’m a little more realistic now. Gone are the early days of thinking that I could be the perfect homeschooling mom whose kids were always happy and sparkling at the thoughts of the incredible learning we were going to be doing that day- learning that included Latin and art and writing classes and violin practice. Gone is the thinking that I can have the perfect house, cook the most perfect nutritious meal, and have perfectly behaved and educated children.

I’m a little more realistic these days.

I want the blog to reflect that.

When you come here to read, friend, I want you to find rest. I don’t want you to read this blog and stress because you think my homeschooling family is perfect like so many others and that you’ll never be able to measure up. I want you to know the truth. I have good days. I have incredible days- days when the kids are having fun together, days when one of them finally catches on to that illusive concept we’ve been struggling with, days when I try a new Pinterest recipe and it’s a big hit. But I also have days when I’m pulling my hair out because kids have been bickering all morning, someone is struggling with a math problem that I can’t even figure out, and supper burns in the crockpot because I left it turned on high too long.

I want to be real about what homeschooling is, what our family is, and what I am. And, along the way, I want to share things you can use- lesson plans, encouragement articles, how-tos for homeschooling and homemaking tasks. I want to welcome you to my blog as I would to my house. And I want you to sit down and make yourself comfortable. And for goodness sake, don’t walk away feeling as if you’re the only one to struggle to get this homeschooling thing right.

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