Tag Archives: homeschool

My Daughters are Weird

Weird is the opposite of normal, and for the sake of this piece, “normal” is like what everyone else does.  Given that, my daughters are weird.

In some circles around here, being home educated makes them weird.  They enjoy school and learning.  They have tons of free time.  They get weeks off at a time.  When they’re not having structured lessons, they learn life lessons; this week, it’s a review of preserving apples, tomatoes, and herbs.

They save their money.  My younger daughter, aged 6, has a fat wad of money saved from birthdays and Christmases that we keep in a safe place for her.  She could get it if she wanted, and she only has to ask if she wants us to get it down for her.  But every other bit of money she gets, from earning it to finding coins on the sidewalk, goes into her boat fund.  When it comes to shopping, she just waits until she has gift cards.

They earn their money.  My older daughter, aged 12, mows lawns and does chores to earn money, and this money goes to mission trips, clothes, and anything else she wants.  We supply her needs, but having to work and earn money has made her a lot more deliberate in how she determines her wants.  The girls across the street from us – teenagers both – find her completely fascinating.  They ask her where she gets her clothes, what she learns, and so forth.  Mary gets clothes for her birthday and Christmas, and she uses her own money for whatever else she wants.  She likes to shop consignment stores for that stuff; she doesn’t see the point in paying full price when she’ll only be able to wear a garment for a year at the most.  The older of the girls told Mary, “I buy whatever I want.”  Mary cocked her head,

We prefer being weird

We prefer being weird

looked at her, and asked, “How will you learn how to manage your money?”  The girl just repeated that she buys whatever she wants.  OK.  That’s great until you’re an adult and real life steps in.

 

Because the girls earn and save their own money, they have learned how to wait for things they want to have.  It started out with waiting for a sale or some special deal.  Once they experienced the rewards of waiting to buy something, they discovered that it’s nothing to wait for other things.  When I promise something fun, they are cool with waiting, and they do well when something affects our plans, making us have to wait even longer.

I don’t mind being weird, and I like having weird children.  It’s my belief that weird children grow up to be weird adults, and weird adults tend to make iNcReDiBlE things happen.

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A Time for Hugs and a Time for Muffins

If you’re a mom and you’re reading this, what I’m about to say won’t come as any surprise to you:  Being a mom is hard work!  This morning as my daughter and I were preparing to begin our homeschool day, she threw a drama fit.  “I don’t want to brush my teeth!  I don’t like my toothpaste.”  Then came “I don’t like my hair!”  Followed by “I don’t like homeschooling and I’m not going to do it!”  The fourth drama fit came after I assigned her a writing assignment:  “I’m not feeling the love here.”  Four drama fits in under two hours.  Whew!  How exhausting!

Somewhere between drama fits three and four, we were sitting down in the living room and I broke through her tears to ask, “Honey, what in the world is all this drama about?”  She told me she’s still scared.  We talked about that for a while, with me asking the right questions and giving her the right assurances.  And just to prove she’s a counselor/chaplain’s daughter, after I said, “Being scared doesn’t feel good, but it’s not wrong to feel scared.  It’s OK to feel that way,” she replied, “I know it’s OK to feel scared.  I know it’s not bad.”  I was beaming on the inside when she said that.  My husband, when I told him, just rolled his eyes and grinned.

Magic wand with stars. Transparent background.

Image via Wikipedia

I still don’t know how to take her fear away.  I can’t.  I can give her a million reassurances and tons of hugs, but there’s no magic wand I can wave to make those bad feelings go away.  And isn’t that just a kick in the keyster?

She gave me a huge hug after our talk and we snuggled for a bit.  Then she wanted to sit right beside me while we did our morning homeschool routine, all except for her spelling test.  Even then, we weren’t more than two feet apart.

The morning passed successfully and we got through lunch and moved on to math.  Two extremely ripe bananas demanded my attention before I was forced to throw them away, so my daughter and I decided we wanted to make muffins out of them.  I dragged her white board into the kitchen so we could work out the math for doubling our muffin recipe.  She’s been introduced to fractions, but she’d never done things with them, like adding, converting or reducing.  With just one explanation, she got it!  We were both flying, because she finally had a challenge in math, she was still learning it quickly, plus we now have a bunch of yummy whole wheat banana muffins for breakfast.