12. Reality

Sometimes I get overwhelmed looking at other homeschoolers’ blogs, because they seem to have everything so much more under control than I do.  Their classrooms are set up with everything you could possibly want; we do school at the dining room table and have one bookshelf for all of our homeschool materials.  Their website photos are magazine-ready; I tend to use snapshots from my iPhone.  (I have a nice Canon DSLR but would rather not deal with the extra step of transferring photos from the memory card to the computer.  My iPhone is just too easy in comparison).  Their kids seem so studious and exceptional at everything they do.  Ashby and Ryan do love to read and give me no trouble with lessons.  I, of course, think they are exceptional.  But, I also know they’re normal kids…they want to play, and self-restraint isn’t tops on their agenda.  They would watch TV and eat snacks all day long if I allowed it (I don’t). But, they’re curious, respectful, resourceful, and imaginative.   That’s what matters to me.

So, I remind myself not to believe everything I see online.  Look at this:

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This was Saturday morning.  The kids and I took a nice walk to a local coffee shop for breakfast, and they ran around and played outside when we were done.  What joyful and loving siblings, right?  A perfect morning…sunshine, a cup of coffee, happy kids.

Well, here we are about 2 minutes later:

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Ashby comes over to tell me that Ryan is mad, because she isn’t playing the game according to his rules (which he has a tendency to keep adding as his games go along).  Now, Ashby is mad at me, because I’m not reprimanding Ryan right this second (I never do, she tells me).   And do you see Ryan pouting in the background?

This is my perfect Saturday morning.  This is reality.  But, it’s quite easy for me to just post the first pic and tell the world how wonderful our life is.  Not only will you think I’ve got it all together, but I might believe it myself.   So, why not?

Well, just in case I’ve given you the impression up until now that everything is roses and cotton candy in our homeschool experience, I want to set the record straight.  I can’t promise that every post I make will inspire you with its beauty or demonstrate how easy and natural it is to homeschool.  But I can assure you that I’ll be honest.  I can offer you resources that I find useful and lessons I’ve learned (and continue to learn) in my years homeschooling.  I’ll post about some of our fun homeschool days, but I’ll address the flops, too (with the hope that our challenge could lead to someone else’s success).

The reality is that some days are amazing, and I impress even myself. More often, though, homeschooling (and parenting, in general) is an exercise in patience and humility.  I don’t have all the answers, contrary to what I could easily project here on my blog.  But, every day is a new opportunity to learn and teach, and for that I am thankful.

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10 thoughts on “12. Reality

  1. hecticpeace

    Photo toaster free app for iPhone photos makes having fun with your pics quick n easy. 🙂 You should never compare, you are doing what is right for your family! Know in your heart none of us are perfect! Even those that look like they have it alllll going on! 🙂 congrats on being a great homeschooler!

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      1. hecticpeace

        Oops sorry…I do find it fun….and I am, like you always in awe of these amazing super mama blogs! Lol….no one is perfect, we live life here! 🙂

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  2. lakenormanprep

    LOL! Of course all of our posts look like the first picture (ok, most of our posts and not all)! We can’t let people know that we are normal. 🙂 I couldn’t agree more. The reality is that a lot of people (me included) start with a beautiful school room and wonderful plans, however, in the end-we all sit our kitchen table or on the floor or on the couch with books all over the house and some days of craziness. The beauty of the craziness is that crazy is normal with kids. So we post the pretty pictures knowing in the back of our minds that every one is quite aware that there is craziness in there somewhere. Terrific post.

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  3. thehomeschoolmomblog

    (laughing) True, true! Sometimes looking at these amazing mommies out there, it can bring us down and cause us to feel less productive. For me, the key is in remembering we each have different gifts. Theirs might be organization and creativity while mine might be music or helping others.
    Each has a gift to give and use. May we each embrace our own and celebrate others’. None of us is perfect, but we ought to be able to applaud the efforts made be us all.
    Great post!
    (For the record, those pictures you took were very nice; iPhone or not. Keep it up!)

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