When I first began dreaming of homeschooling, I had this luxurious idea of my kids and I huddled around a sunlit table, pouring over books and performing perfect little experiments together while the birds chirped outside and the flowers outside garden window smiled at me.
Do you SEE that sunshine? Ah, now I look back at this photo and just LAUGH. I thought I had it all together back then.
You see, the seasons of life have a way of changing.
Not long after receiving our Celiac disease diagnoses (yes, plural), my kids began receiving Occupational Therapy, Speech Therapy, and Physical Therapy every week. We spent at least 6 hours a week shuttling back and forth for these [medically necessary] events. And this didn’t include doctor visits, grocery shopping, library trips, playdates, or homeschool co-ops.
AH! I thought I was going crazy!
I quickly learned the value of Car Schooling — that is, taking homeschooling on the road.
It’s been a challenge for our family to implement any sort of chore system over the years. Part of the problem is that the systems I have tried rely heavily upon me for successful implementation.
- I’ve tried chore charts (kid sees card, completes card, flips it over when done).
- I’ve tried bribery (“Hey, I’ll give you 25 cents for XYZ”).
- I’ve tried just assigning tasks willy-nilly and saying you’re-part-of-the-family-so-do-it.
While each have worked, it really required ME being mindful and constantly remembering that this system needed to be used. I didn’t like that. In a word? I needed my kids to have OWNERSHIP. Continue reading
This post is the first in a series: How To Get a Homeschool Space That Cleans Itself.
A few years ago, I came across a book that completely upturned my life called The House That Cleans Itself. It’s a simple, easy read — and insanely practical with step-by-step advice and humor, as well.
I’m the sort of person who people describe as “organized” — which is true. I love organization. However, I’m also TERRIBLE at keeping things tidy. Confession: my nickname growing up was Messy Bessie…
I hated this about myself. So I did the only thing I knew to do: I read books, scoured magazines, and looked for ways to organize better. And as you can probably guess… none of them really worked longer than a few weeks. Continue reading
If you’re a fan of the Instant Pot, you know just how versatile this kitchen tool can be. After all, you can:
But did you know you can make fully-assembled freezer meals… and cook them directly from frozen??
When I went to college to get a teaching degree, I was adamant about one thing. Teaching preschool was NOT for me. The thought of spending hours in a classroom setting with 4 and 5 year olds literally made me break out in a cold sweat.
But becoming a parent has a way of changing you. And when my own daughter got old enough to participate in Classical Conversations, I took a deep breath and signed up to tutor her Abecedarian (aka: 4 and 5yo) class.
It wasn’t long after purchasing my Instant Pot that I became interested in accessories. Yes, that’s right. Your Instant Pot can have accessories.
If you’re around the Instant Pot Facebook group much, you’ll see people raving about their accessories. There are certainly a lot of specialty items and doo-dads you can purchase to make cooking in your Instant Pot even more exciting.
People ask me all the time – which accessories should I get?? But here’s where I struggle. At heart, I’m a kitchen minimalist. I don’t want to just buy stuff to have stuff. So I’m going to present these accessories in order of ranking: Absolutely Necessary (because there are some that simply are!), Really Helpful To Have, and Fun If You Have The Extra Money. Continue reading
I remember the emotions I went through when I first decided to purchase the Instant Pot: Excitement. Skepticism. Anticipation. But when that beautiful big box arrived at my door, all emotions faded into one. Absolute overwhelm. How do I unbox this thing, let alone use it?!
Suffice it to say, I’m a whole-hearted Instant Pot convert. The Instant Pot has replaced my slow cooker as the ultimate tool of convenience. It only took cooking one or two recipes to realize this device was going to change my life forever. And, naturally, my first question became: how do I travel with my Instant Pot?!