Saturday, April 9, 2016

The Beginning

I have always wanted it to happen. For some reason I needed to be shoved into it. I am happy (and a little nervous) to announce that we have begun the homeschooling journey in our home. Lily and Kaylee started on Monday and I looooove having them at home with me. Riley will complete the school year at the school; there wasn't much sense in taking her out 2 months before the end of the year. She is doing really well and has a fantastic teacher. It was necessary to take Lily and Kaylee out. They were in the same class and the decision to take them out and begin homeschooling was much deliberated, pondered, and prayed over, and has been a long time coming. I should have listened to Heavenly Father a long time ago, but, alas, I am a slow learner.

Our first day was so disastrous it was comical! We had an appraiser coming to look at our house so I rushed around making sure everything looked great while the girls read their current chapter books. The appraiser came and went, they did reading logs and vocabulary/spelling words, and we piled in the car to drive 15 minutes south to shop at the grocery store, bring Michael his forgotten water bottle, and most importantly get the mail key from him! All our new homeschooling supplies were sitting in the post office, waiting to be picked up, and we couldn't wait to get our hands on it all. We drove straight there from the hospital.

As I was loading our boxes into the car I remembered that I didn't have the blocks to go with our math books (we are using a program called Math-U-See). I didn't buy them because a friend of mine offered an extra set to us; I happily took her up on it because the set is quite pricey (thank you, Nina!). I sent her a text to see when we could pick them up but discovered they were out of town until Wednesday. Bummer, but I didn't mind, we had plenty to do! Or so I thought. I excitedly flipped open our brand new history book and immediately discovered that I needed a few extra books to begin the lessons. No big deal, I thought. I could order them online and head to the library to get the books we needed to follow the curriculum for our Five-in-a-Row books. So I went through the book list and selected a few that we could use for the next few weeks. I checked the library online to make sure they were in stock and we headed over to grab them. We got to the library and boom. It's closed on Mondays! Our very first day of homeschool and we couldn't use any of our brand new supplies! We were not discouraged. Okay, the girls may have cried a little BUT I assured them that everything was okay. We got home and did some science using a nature book that I purchased a few weeks ago. With the science, reading, logs, and vocabulary, they didn't do much, but they got a LOT of reading in which I am super happy about. Reading, reading, and more reading are top priority for me. I even finished a book; My Story, by Elizabeth Smart.

Tuesday was a little more structured. The girls read a ton, did their reading logs and more vocabulary. They started a free typing course online, we read from their nature/science book and did some outdoor exploring. They started a couple of nature logs and loved making observations of the world around us.

Wednesday we did all of the same things AND started on our history because our books came in the mail (hooray for Amazon Prime!) AND we started a Book of Mormon course that I purchased through It's a pdf file that you can print at home and it covers the entire Book of Mormon. There are separate courses for grades 1-3 and 4-7; we are doing the latter. I want my kids to have a good understanding of their scriptures and I can't even tell you how excited I am about this course!

On Thursday all we did was  our Book of Mormon study in the morning because I had a doctor appointment 45 minutes away (in the Big City. Not. It's still a very small town) and any time we are up there we make sure to get some household staples since we can't get them where we live. So that took our whole day and we were unable to do much besides reading, of course! That evening we picked up a piano that a very kind friend gave to us and it was SO EXCITING for our family. After 11 years of marriage and family, we have a piano in our home! Hooray!

On Friday we totally and completely made up for Thursday's lost time. We had our new blocks and did a TON of math. We did Book of Mormon, History, reading, vocabulary, a load of writing, and more math. I went to bed last night feeling like I had run a marathon.

Today was relaxing. We finally made it to the library; it was our 3rd attempt for the week and we got there JUST as the librarian was ready to lock the door! They close super early on Saturday and I didn't know beforehand. She kindly let us in and helped us find the books on our list. Thank you, Kind Librarian! We borrowed some movies too and spent the afternoon watching them; Jungle Book and The Secret Garden. It was a nice and lazy day.

So far homeschooling has been trickier than I thought, easier than I thought, and though I knew I'd love it I underestimated how much. So far, I. LOVE. IT. and I know it will be a challenge but I honestly doubt my love for it will fade. I think it will grow and grow and I'll never want my kids to go back to school! I love being with these kiddos, teaching them, and learning with them. I'm so thankful for this opportunity. Things got pretty sour at the school before I took the girls out but I am starting to see that it was all ONE HUGE blessing in disguise.

I do not have any recent photos. I'll have to do something about that. Here are some random photos from January.