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Sunday, September 9, 2012

When Life Gets Busy or I Thought I Could Beat the System

So school started three weeks ago.  One morning I pulled out the books and said "Hey kids!  Time for school to start!"  I neglected to take a picture.

When I decided to homeschool years (and years.  Before I was even married) ago, a major appeal was having to spend less time dealing with school.  Because I wasn't going to have to deal with getting everyone off to school, welcoming everyone home, doing homework, after school activities, and my personal dislike: volunteering.  All of you who homeschool can now laugh maniacally.

When I started Kathleen in school, I started to realize that my days were taken.  Every. Single. Day.  Well, I exaggerate.  Four days out of the week were taken.  For awhile I thought I could get away with not schooling when I didn't feel like it, or I was too lazy, or there was some internet shopping at J.Crew that really needed to be done.  Now.  because we were schooling all year round.  Then one day I counted up how many days are spent in traditional school and divided it through the year and realized that actually I didn't have as much wiggle room as I thought.  And I couldn't just school when I felt like schooling.  And those play dates in the morning were going to be missed.  And lunch friends, only maybe.  And J.Crew was going to have to be neglected.

And then I thought to myself, 'Hey maybe traditional school isn't such as much of a time commitment as I thought it was.  Maybe that will give me back my time.'  All of you who traditional school can now laugh maniacally.

In the end I remembered an oft-quoted phrase from my father-in-law. He has had a variety of occupations, most of them self employed, and liked to comment that the best part of being self-employed is that you get to work half days.  And you can choose which half you work - the first twelve hours or the second.

So I've finally realized that life just changes when your first child enters school (this year's curriculum is  a full-fledged first grade curriculum).  If Kathleen was in traditional school, I would have time commitments.  With Kathleen home schooled I have time commitments.  And there's no going back until the last one leaves for college.  And right now I'm not going to try and think how many more years that will take.

So that's the long story of where we've gone off to.  Life.  Some of it has been exciting, and most of it just boring.  But I'll try to keep you updated, Mom and Dad.


Nisa said...

I love it! Oh man, having done both now... boy, do I understand. Glad to hear from you though and I'm not your mom or dad! :P

Bridget said...

I love these homeschool updates. I have to say, I have inklings of homeschooling being in our future just starting to take shape. Who knows if it will ever come to pass. But I can see that my oldest would do well with it. My youngest...well, she thrives in traditional school. Do you ever wonder if one of your kids would do better in traditional school? How do you deal with doubts that you are schooling the right way? Or do you not have doubts? Just talk me through it. :)

PaulaJean said...

We're very glad you're taking school seriously. We knew too many kids where 'home schooling' meant 'no schooling.' Life isn't always fun. Bummer, huh??

UnkaDave said...

School, schmool. Let them do the "hard knocks" thing. Keep shopping online. Way more fun.

Laura said...

Or, if you never have any kids, it's freedom all the time!

PS - I missed your posts.

Just US said...

Totally understand!! All along I had heard "oh, homeschooling doesn't take all that long. You will have plenty of time to fill." HA! I am not sure where these people got their information but ours days do not have any "extra" time to fill. Never mind the fact that I am absolutely exhausted by the end of the day! I miss your blogs but can now say I understand how both ways of schooling messes with time!