Weathering our Storms Together

Weathering our Storms Together

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Weird, Strange, Unethical Homeschoolers!

So here we are about to start another year of homeschooling. For the most part the annoying persistence of well meaning folks to make us change our mind has stopped. Whether it's from an acknowledgement that we aren't doing a horrible job educating our kiddos (a slim piece of the pie), or they think that after this many years they aren't going to get through to us (a slightly larger piece of the pie) or that they think we are just too down right weird to talk to (ahem, the LARGEST piece of the pie). Which ever way it is, I'm happy that it's one less stress factor I have to deal with, especially right now when I am knee deep (well, let's face it, up to my nostrils) in forms, computer updates, books, lesson plans, and state notifications. What I would LOVE to tell some of these folks is that I am NOT anti-public school ( I know many HSers are, and that's certainly your prerogative), but we aren't. Both Handsome Hubby and myself went to public school right here in the county which we live. :-) I have to say, given our conservative views, I felt like the kids would have a better chance at getting a well rounded education without all of the peer (and teacher!) pressure that I went through. Our goal is an education that will serve our kids well.
Anyway, in the spirit of homeschooling and the oh-so-many negative ideas about it, I have to tell this short (and comically true) story from our homeschooling journey.
When my kiddos were little, I had a hard time finding somewhere (local) to walk that I didn't worry about Sweet Son and Dear Daughter being hit by a car. Anyway, I found this nice little cemetery down the was perfect. Gravel, approx. a mile loop from start to finish, back out of the way, and no one stopping to ask why the kids weren't in school (well, we hope not!). Anyway, a few days a week we would go out and walk, the kids had to do one loop and then they would play ( I know it sounds horrible) by the cemetery while I finished my walk. I wouldn't let them play among the headstones, so they played in a little area just off the cemetery surrounded by fields. I know there was one neighbor at the end of the road to the cemetery that stared as we made our many journeys out each week. I would wave, smile, and go on. So one day, when I finished my laps, the kids came up to me carrying bones. I finally figured they were cattle bones. Anyway, nothing would do but for Sweet Son to carry his jaw bone home for a bleach bath and study. That was the day the mowers came early, and the curious end of the road guy was out walking. This was earlier on in our homeschooling journey and I know the conversation that followed must have made me look like a lunatic. I expected health services, the board of ed., and the county welfare for two weeks afterwards. It was a rather awkward conversation, made worse by me feeling the need to explain. (a need that has LONG since passed, I might add). I laugh now when I think of it, and I'm happy to say we've had many other *awkward* situations in which I just let the folks think what they wanted. I could just imagine the conversation at *their* dinner table that night..."you know those homeschoolers go to the cemetery every couple of days and play, today they were even carrying out bones!" LOL
Our homeschooling journey has made us wealthier and for those of you who homeschool you know I'm not talking cash here! We've met some WONDERFUL folks and made life long friends. I have learned how to avoid sticky topics in conversation with my "not homeschooling friends". As for my students (to whom I am extremely partial) they have developed into fine young people that I am proud of. As for the nay-sayers I am glad that we started this journey and if it ended tomorrow, I don't think I would regret one minute of time I have shared with my children. (OK, so I could have done without some the arguments....) Anyway, I'm thankful to be starting another year...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Girl's Day Out ....with a Handsome Chauffeur

My handsome hubby driving me, My Mom and Dear Daughter to Princeton, KY to tour the Adsmore Home.
First we stopped off at the square and went to see the Trail of Tears memorial. This area is where the Native American Indians camped...there was a plentiful water supply. This picture is of Mom and Dear Daughter walking down to the memorial.

Dear Daughter in front of one of the signs...
Me, Handsome Hubby and Dear Daughter....
Handsome Hubby and Dear Daughter exploring the area...
The Adsmore Home. Delightful visit! Can't wait to go back! Me, Mom and Dear Daughter on the front porch.
I found a small tree limb that looked like antlers...then I decided they were horns. :-) LOL
Dear Daughter and Handsome Hubby on the side porch of the Adsmore Home.
Mom and Dear Daughter in the gardens area....very fitting, Julia and Mom both love flowers.

Me and Mama in the back seat coming home. I loved the talk time.

Daddy and Mama LOVE history and are forever more visiting historical sites and homes. My mom LOVES old homes. She had been wanting to take me and Dear Daughter (Sweet Son doesn't share our old home enthusiasm) to the Adsmore Home for some time. Right now they have the Wedding Theme on display, it was wonderful! We also visited the Trail of Tears memorial, walked some of the square and had lunch at Pizza Hut. Handsome Hubby was off work and volunteered to drive. Dear Daughter was over joyed at that prospect and took the front seat to be with her Daddy for the drive to and from. My Sweet Mama and I finished our day in the bean patch picking beans and chatting more. I don't know whenever I have had a more enjoyable day.
My wonderful Dad and Alex spent the day together. Romping and stomping over the fields and they took a little trip to Brownsville to Mis Amigos for lunch. During the heat of the day they sprawled out in the living room reading. Two Peas in a Pod, they are!

Sunday, June 26, 2011


A couple of weeks back I was in walmart with my Dear Daughter and her friend...we were shopping for supplies for an enrichment class. Anyway, here I was at the candy aisle, looking for candy bugs...I was busy and didn't see the lady behind me and unknowing stepped in front of her. But, no fear, she let me know...I heard a huge, "WELL EXCUSE ME!" I jumped and said, "oh my, I'm sorry, I didn't see you." She proceeded to give me a mouth full of garbage at which point I started to think I may know this person and she was trying to pull some sort of strange joke on me. (That or I was on some sadly skewed version of candid camera) I asked, "Are you for real?" She (in so many words) let me know she was. I was beyond amazed this lady was so angry at me accidentally stepping in front of her. I found it comical, with a chuckle said, "Well, Maam, I do hope this is the worst thing that happens to you today." I said this instantly without thinking, with a smile on my face and my hand gently on her arm. ( I must learn to hold my tongue) Well, this infuriated her more, her facial expression went from bad to worse as she said even more (ahem) "nice" things. Dear Daughter and Friend were standing there with mouths agape. I told them not to worry about it. It would be ok that this lady obviously didn't know any better than to act like this. I patted Ms. Angry on the arm and told her to have a nice day and walked away.
This experience led to an interesting conversation with the kiddos with me about Anger. I first told them, that more than likely something else in the person's life had made them lash out in anger. But I have this little saying about anger...reserve it for the times it will accomplish something and don't let it corrupt you. Anger can be a great motivator. However, it can also drain a person without accomplishing anything.
I feel like that we, as a whole society, are becoming so involved with ourselves and what we want that everything gets pushed aside. It's often easy to let your anger flare, or to lash out at someone because they said or did something "first". I don't have an explosive temper, so it's usually not an issue for me. Other times I *choose* not to get angry simply because I don't want to waste my energy on something that isn't important to me.
Of course there are the times I absolutely do get angry, I try to make those times productive. After I apologize to those around me for things I've said, made sure I didn't damage the floor when I stomped my foot, put drops in my eyes to help with the busted blood vessels, unclenched my teeth, and took deep breaths to help lower my blood pressure I try to address the issue. :-)
Really, all joking aside, try to save anger for things that matter, things that can be helped, most importantly issues that are deserving of anger. So many times, Anger is just a needless waste of energy (and who needs to waste that, right??) I feel badly for folks who have so much garbage in their lives that they have developed a serious anger issue. Ultimately, though, we choose. I have observed some folks with utter destruction in their lives go through it without the added burden of anger, it seems they reach the other side of their trouble stronger, more whole, and more content.
Think before you _________________-(insert anger action. i.e. scream, curse, hit things, snort, stomp feet, tear your hair...well you get the picture.) QUOTE BELOW:

Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.
Mark Twain

Monday, June 6, 2011

Modern Modesty ....and Young Ladies...

I know, using Modesty with the word Modern is *almost* an oxymoron. So very frustrating.
I am appalled and disgusted by what we have done to our girls. It doesn't take more than a few minutes in any clothing retail store to determine we are undermining the self esteem and self worth of our daughters.
Let me first be clear that I am speaking on decency here...modest in the sense of avoiding indecency or impropriety. Anyone who knows my family well knows that I am always wearing a modest skirt or a dress. I am well aware not everyone shares the same convictions. But regardless of how you choose to dress your girls you can do so *modestly*. Meaning, covering their bodies, and not dressing them in clothes that are sexually suggestive. More over, we can behave in a way as adults that doesn't say to our girls, "dress provocatively to encourage attention from the opposite sex". I have never quite understood why women who cared at all about themselves felt it necessary to make sure their cleavage was showing. Really. What has happened to us???
I personally, want my sweet daughter to feel like her self worth is more than her body. I *don't* want her to feel like she has to "show" to be pretty. or accepted.
Young ladies should not be encouraged to use their bodies that way. It's degrading. It's disgusting. It's WRONG.
Some how our society has gotten the idea that if it's natural, it's fine to expose and that if you are modest you are somehow saying that certain areas of your body are "bad" or certain behaviors (breast feeding for one) is wrong. There is beauty in modesty. There is respect in modesty.

I believe for so many parents it's the need for their child to "fit in" that lends us to letting go of some of our reservations. I, as a parent, can understand that. But somewhere in the rush to "grow up" our girls we've lost what is so important. Let them be children. By nature, we are adults much, much longer than we are children. Childhood is a precious time. Nurture your girls, love your girls, encourage your girls, educate your girls, pray with your girls, but please let them be just that....little girls. Encourage your tween/teen girls to be modest young ladies by example. Be the sex educator of your girls. Talk to them, explain to them, and listen to them.
While I most certainly don't have all of the answers and I (along with my Handsome Hubby) are raising a young lady of our own, I know that what society is leaning to is *not* the answer.

Here is a great article (by CNN no less!) on this topic (Parents Don't Dress your Little Girls Like Tramps)

I'll close by leaving you with this quote...

You have a good many little gifts and virtues, but there is no need of parading them, for conceit spoils the finest genius. There is not much danger that real talent or goodness will be overlooked long, and the great charm of all power is modesty.
Louisa May Alcott

About Me

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I'm a daughter of the King, the wife of a wonderful man, the mother to two caring, earthly children and two heavenly babes...