I had to delete my old blog today, due to getting ridiculous amounts of spam comments emailed to me to moderate, and it made me a little sad, like I was erasing one of my children or something. The web is a curious thing: sites that just sort of hang in space, waiting for you to pull them up and read them. It always makes me think of the dad in "A Christmas Story" with his tapestry of profanity floating through eternity. 'Cept, of course, I keep mine clean.
So I am in the mood to write and yet, can't think of anything too darn life-shattering to say, so I'll explain to you the hows, whys, and whatfors of homeschooling. Actually, we may skip the whatfors. But since I'm asked this particular question all the time, 'You homeschool? You are so brave!' let's start with the answer to that.
I am not brave. Just the opposite in fact. I am too much of a chicken to put my innocent kids in school. Or maybe I'm too much of a chicken to unleash them on unsuspecting school children. In any case, bravado does not enter into the equation. I am approximately as brave as say, a goldfish. So there goes that theory. The #2 statement I get is, 'You must be so patient!' Again, and alas, nope. I used to be patient. Back when I was the perfect parent. Before I had any children to mess up my streak. My girls actually have to show a lot of patience with me, not as much vice-versa. Like when I can't find something in order to conduct their science experiment, or when I am quick, learning something pronto on the sly so that I can teach it to them and fake that I totally knew it all along, or when my eyes are crossing in boredom because they insist on learning about how whales don't have lips or some such thing that they find endlessly facinating and I find...the facination to have ended. So now #2 homeschool misconception is blown all to heck. Then usually the conversation goes to 'why, why, why in God's green earth would I ever want to do that?' and well, that answer is really long and varies daily. Mostly I just like being with them and seeing them learn and not having to worry that they stay in their pajamas past 9 am (or if it was yesterday, 4 pm) and not wondering or worrying about what's going on in their lives without me. But really, it's like Mike and I always say,
'We figure if someone is going to ruin them, it should be us.'
And that's really it, in a nutshell.
Ideally, my homeschool in my head looks a lot like Little House on the Prairie, with lots of curling up on the couch with good classic books and tea and heart to heart talks and lengthy supper times with great discussions and homemade bread and everyone obediently scooting off to do their chores and then hunkering down for the night with sleepy eyes and braided hair and whispers of I-love-yous, but let's be honest, most of the time it's as hectic as your house and a lot less ideal. There's arguing and tears and whining (that's just from me) and sometimes we get everything done exactly as I planned it and sometimes we don't seem to get a darn thing done other than successfully recreate a hurricane in my living room. There are good days and there are bad days. We are accustomed to being with each other 24/7, which is only a good thing, oh, 23/6 and then we start growling under our breath and cheerfully going berserk. The girls fight like cats and dogs, and yet, if they were to be separated in different grades for five days a week, the tears would rain like cats and dogs. So, at the moment, it's all worth it, although you may have to remind me of this about a million times in the next ten years.
So that's a reason or two, and if you still silently think I'm crazy, you'd be right. As long as they can function in society and balance their check books and not tuck their Star Wars t-shirts in their sweat pants, then I'm calling myself a successful mom, having a glass of wine, and putting another dollar in the cookie jar stashed aside for their therapy. Right now we're off to make homemade pizza crusts. Hey, there are fractions involved in cooking and that's sooooo math!