Homeschooling

I have wanted to homeschool for years and I am taking advantage of the insanity of the world to make it happen.

My desire to homeschool started when my oldest was in first grade the first time. He struggled A LOT with reading, writing, social interaction,  and well, just about everything.

My take away from that disastrous year was I wanted to homeschool him. I wanted to teach him in a way that he would benefit, understand and enjoy. But I was a single mom and it was my job to work.

Flash forward about 4 years and I am remarried and a stay at home mom during a pandemic where it became the “it” thing to homeschool. I jumped on the bandwagon!

I went back and forth over my decision, got input from my husband and family. Some super supportive some really hurtful. I researched requirements and costs associated. Being a one income family, I wanted to keep our costs low.

My first step was being added to homeschool groups on FB. Specifically groups in my area. Those moms have so much knowledge and experience it was great to ask their opinions. In our state it is required that we are in a homeschool association so I researched those extensively and asked for recommendations.

After deciding on an association I started to research co-ops. I didn’t even know that co-ops were a thing, (total newbie) but they are and they are EXPENSIVE. I was looking at these prices and my mind was blown. I could not afford all of that. The main takeaway for co-ops seemed to be social interaction.

Well we live in a social media day and age soooooooo I hoped on my trusty Facebook and BLAMO!!!! Playdates that are free and possibly fun for me.

So all that was left was the curriculum (and whatever supplies I needed). When you start looking at curriculums make sure your association does not require a certain one, or have it be religious (I went secular for my curriculum… I teach God outside of school). Also check what proof they require, I need calendar days tracked, and proof of their work.

So I started my search where I always start my search… Amazon… and Amazon told me that curriculums are EXPENSIVE. They were a complete WTF moment.

3 of these are ONE subject!

Enter more peoples opinions, I was told online public school was free?! Worth a looking into…. But they are all online and you are logged in for hours in front of a computer screen and you have to go at the school’s pace. For my daughter that probably would have worked, but for my son, not so much.

Back to the face place to stalk the answers about curriculums and it seemed most moms (who were not doing religious based learning) made up their own…. but how??? This is where I am semi proud of myself (the diet coke of proud). I went to the Dept of Education website for our state and found what they require!! That easy. I pieced together my own curriculum.

If you get it…..

I bought things from the dollar store, Five Below, Amazon (has digital teaching items) and I found videos on YouTube to make learning more interesting and less mommy monotonous. Teacherspayteachers.com has free downloads, they are not entire curriculums but they are some worksheets you can use to insure comprehension.

So we have been “in school” since 8/3, Monday thru Friday, except for 2 days when I thought I was dying of Corona. My son loves homeschooling and is actually retaining information. He still struggles with writing so I’m hoping to have to research how to help him there. My daughter hates it, but only because she isn’t with her friends. She is excelling and because I make up the curriculum she can move ahead.

Not every day is perfect, I am learning quickly though what works and what doesn’t for them. I am praying that we are successful and that I am showing them learning can be fun. This on-going experience is reminding me what amazing kids I have, and for that I am forever grateful.

Remembering 9/11

This will definitely not be the only homeschool blog, I want to talk fied trips and money saving tips. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. I am obviously not an expert but I have a team of them on my Facebook pages!

The Inbetween

I realize that’s not a real word.

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted a blog and I’ve been feeling guilty about it! I really enjoy taking time out to write these and I’ve been working on the same blog for over a week and it just isn’t right yet.

This past month has been so busy for me it’s hard to concentrate on writing right now.

August is the home of our anniversaries (marriage and dating), both of our birthdays (husband and mine) and back to school for the kids. So we’ve been busy!

The business received several orders for artworks, signs and coasters.

I started working out 2-3 times a week with other moms (I am not a social person so that’s new to me). In the same category, I’ve been talking to the moms at the kids bus stop. I am almost considering a girls night out with them… but it may be too soon.

I got put back on meds for anxiety and depression, that is an ongoing adventure that’s getting a blog for sure!

I’ve been working some weekends cleaning houses, which is ironic because my house is usually a MESS!

My sister is talking to me again! I thought she was mad at me… I tend to say really stupid/hurtful things and usually not on purpose so I was really worried I did it again… but she was just busy (so she wasn’t really not speaking to me, but I felt unspoken to) .

Life has been pretty great lately, I’m feeling proud of myself for everything that I’ve got going on and the meds are working so well that I’m not worried about the other shoe dropping!

Life Update

It has been over 4 months since my last post and it honestly feels like an entire lifetime has passed. My fiance and I are actually married, though most of our family doesn’t know, we are having an actual wedding later this month. We have moved to a new place, that is bigger and more expensive(which still makes me nervous). I am pregnant… which was part of the plan in February, getting pregnant in February not giving birth then. I am getting tired just thinking about everything that has happened in the last few months. There were days when it was just too much and I found myself crying in the shower when everyone else slept.

The first challenge that I(we, just assume I am always including my husband)  faced was finding a new place to live. We were living with my BFF/co-worker and though I love her, we were cramping each other styles. So we needed to find our own place and something much bigger, we were basically squeezing 4 people into 2 small rooms. We knew from the beginning that we needed at least 3 bedrooms so each kid could have their own room. It was really location, location, location and kind of price as well.  We were living in an area that my son was doing well in school but my daughter was not. My son has ADHD and he really needs a VERY patient teacher that has experience with kids like him. He got a lot of one on one attention because of his IEP, but the school genuinely seemed to care about his well being and education. I need to point out that this was not a “great” school, test scores were not the best but the school really was. My daughter did not thrive in the school because it was not one of those “great” and challenging schools. She is super smart and very determined to get things done and always be the best, but she was not challenged and was actually made fun of by the other kids for being smart. Eventually she just gave into peer pressure and stop challenging herself. So there is our first challenge, do we try to stay in the area we are in for Brian or move to a better school district for Mackenzie.

Well that brings me to our second challenge, price. Matt and I are not poor by any means but we also don’t have enough money for $2000 a month in rent. We are trying to save money to eventually buy a house, so we have to consider that. We set our budget at $1300 a month and we stuck to it. That budget quickly eliminated where we were currently staying, the cheapest rent for a 3 bedroom was $1500. So we started looking at other areas. If you are familiar with Charlotte, NC you know that you will find some pretty cheap rents in some really questionable areas so I had to be a housing detective. I had found a website that actually showed me the crime rate in the area and then of course I had to research the schools.

The research led me into South Carolina and the Fort Mill school area. We found a place that had an amazing rent and started the application process. We both got really excited about the place and started making our exit arrangements with our current place. We passed the credit/background check but when it came to fiances we made too much money…. now as I mentioned earlier, we are not poor but we are not rich either and that blew our mind and broke my heart. So then panic mode set in, we are only a few weeks from the end of our lease and we had to start the process all over again.

My anxiety was in over drive and I was frantically messaging any place I could that had availability. There was a place that I had fallen in love with a few years ago but could never afford by myself and it had the exact model that I wanted available on the day that I needed it. It was like fate. I called and put a deposit on it that day. There ended our new home drama.