Updated: Jan 30

This week ends our home school series. But I would be remiss if I did not include today’s topic. After you’ve prayed, done some research, and done some preparation what’s left?  Finding your rhythm can feel a little weird at first. But finding what schedule and habits work best is necessary and completely up to you. I like to read a variety of blogs and books to help me  choose what I think fits our family dynamic from year to year. Check out my favorite home school books for this year: Home School 101 - Chart the Course, Enjoy the Journey by Nicole Kennedy Green

Managers of Their Homes - A Practical Guide to Daily Scheduling for Christian Homeschool Families Educating the Whole Hearted Child by Clay Clarkson with Sally Clarkson

Take your time and know there will be learning curves for mom, dad, and kids. Once you’ve established what works, stick to that routine as much as possible.

Now where is the reward in all this? This too is up to you. All work and no play is a set up for burn out. I suggest you schedule a time for yourself when you will be unavailable by phone so you can truly relax alone or enjoy time to relax with your family. Just as you schedule your kid’s classes, be intentional in scheduling time for fun and relaxation for you. I like to have at least one meal a week when I don’t cook. This is a one of the ways I reward myself after a full week. Decide what fits your needs, your family needs and your budget. Remember that God rewards those He loves. Setting a time for personal rewards is one of the ways you can love yourself well. Remember also that in all things, give yourself grace. Everything won’t come together all at once. But with time, dedication and seeking the Holy Spirit, He will help you, your family, and your home school have a steady flow!

Join my husband, myself, and friends as we pray for this school year this Sunday, September 6 at 8PM (EST)! Join our private Facebook group to join! I believe God's power will see us through this school year and allow us to finish strong!

Updated: Jan 30

Home school can already seem like a whole new world. But it need not be a lonely one. Whether you have a small or large home school network, it will benefit parents and kids alike to be connected to other home school organizations. Here are some of the reasons why I sought a diversified home school tribe:

1. I was scared! This is a massive responsibility and I wanted help to know that I was doing something right. I found a home school group that would assign me an advisor and give guidance and accountability. They also would assist me with mapping out plans for the school year and making quarterly goals. 2. Legal protection! Prior to the current pandemic, my children and I would be out and about a few days a week for home school co-op, field trips, and going to the library. I never wanted any issues if someone saw my kids and I out and about during school hours on a regular basis. But, more importantly, I wanted to be made aware of any legal changes in my state regarding homeschooling. My solution was to join the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA).  They provided me with a home educator card to keep in my wallet, as well as keeping me informed on legal issues. They have options for a small monthly or annual cost. For me, the membership was worth having for my peace of mind and great teacher discounts! 3. Hope for the finish line! There are others that have already been where I am going. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate my tenured home school moms. I glean so much from what they have already experienced. I love hearing from moms that have graduated some or all of their kids! Hearing their stories and experiences keeps me pumped for the years ahead. 4. Cater to my child’s interest! I joined several online groups in my state, as well as groups specified for my kids’ grade levels. Connecting with other groups online allowed me to find families with similar interests. I was able to find resources specific to careers or hobbies that my kids are currently interested in. Online groups alerted me to cool conventions and expos all over the U.S., along with great programs to help hone my children’s unique gifts and abilities.  

Taking a little time to network and research to create a home school tribe you love, is well worth the effort. I’d love to share some of my favorite homeschooling resources that have made for a great home school experience for me and my kids. Check out the Hope at Home private Facebook group to get connected and get specific answers to your home school questions. The goal is to have fun creating a home school tribe that is the perfect fit for you and your family! This is an investment you won’t regret! 

Updated: Jan 30

There’s a slight misconception that I’m a home school mom because I love being around my kids all the time. That idea my friend, could not be further from the truth. I love my kids, spending time with them and I’ve come to love what home school has to offer. But it is a lot of work and it eats up quite a bit of time, whereas I’d like to be doing other things. However, what I will say is that I have grown in my desire for pleasing God and asking Him to help me do hard things…His way. I realized early on that I could bear down under the weight of it all and just get through my day. However, who wants to live like that? Certainly not me! Once I realized all home school would require of me, I had to make some lifestyle changes. But more importantly, I had to acknowledge that I needed God to give me a new level of supernatural strength. And you know what? That just happens to be God’s specialty.

I had to surrender all my preconceived notions of how I “thought” home school should look for our family (a new and improved schedule was not the ticket). You definitely need to plan ahead. Yet, you just have to realize that some days are just going to be harder than others, but in the midst, God will help you keep a right attitude. I have come to understand that home schooling is more about me, than my kids. Finding joy in home school is about finding my joy in Christ. He is my “why.” He has been more than capable of helping me as the super control freak type that I can be, and instead, He helps me to relax and enjoy this ride (I’m still a control freak, just dropped the “super”).

I no longer even hope that my kids will appreciate what I’m doing, because in all honesty they may never. And that is okay. What matters is that I stay grounded in the fact that we are answering a calling, as unto the Lord. The burden is light and joy is there for the taking when your focus is on the Father! Another way to look at it is that you don’t “have to” home school, you “get to!” You get to assist “your” kids in learning as they matriculate through their different ages and stages. This is a full time job, and then some. But it’s a blessing! A tangible way that helps me find peace of mind during some of the crazy days, is to reset throughout the day. It’s great to meditate in the morning or evening, but try to do something during the day to keep you fueled. This can be a Christian podcast, YouTube sermon, worship song, or a motivational moment on IG. The goal here is to create space for you to unwind and remind yourself that the Holy Spirit is at work in you and your home.

Also, write down some specific things that you believe GOD will accomplish this year in your home school. Some of you may be home schooling temporarily due to the pandemic, but trust that God is going to do something amazing! This can be as simple as saying, “God I have to do this, but your Word says, you work all things out for my good.” God’s plans are always bigger and better than ours. So be intentional about writing down the ways that you believe God is going to shape you and your kids during this Fall 2020-Spring 2021 home school year. Write down a testimony weekly.

And lastly, make time to rest. Pick a day that works best for you to rest your mind, body, and spirit. Do the bare minimum on your rest day, because taking care of your physical and spiritual health is key. I believe God has blessed you with all you need in His wisdom! Prepare for a joy-filled school year!

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