Homeschooling 101

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School field trip to Astoria, OR! I’m such an awesome Homeschool Mom!

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School on the deck… with the chickens…

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Salem LOVES science! Project caterpillar —> butterfly

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Playing UNO ~ and learning math with her dolls ūüôā

For the past year, I have been a Homeschool Mom –or HM, when I don’t feel like typing out the entire word– to our 3 amazing kids. This may sound cliche, but it has truly been a journey. We have homeschooled thru their 5th grade, 2nd grade and preK years… I think… At least I think they’ve graduated to 6th, 3rd and Kinder. I think they’ve learned all they need to know as 5th grade, 2nd grade and preschoolers. I think they’ll remember all I taught them. I think they’ll do well in school this year. I think they’ll graduate high school… eventually, right?

Reflecting on a year of a homeschool, it has been the best year and the most difficult¬†year for our family. Our homeschool experience this year was shaped by the challenging and beautiful, mountain and valley, and joy-filled and tear-filled moments, simultaneously. If there is one piece of homeschooling wisdom I can share with you from my experience a HM this¬†year, which absolutely encapsulates my feelings beautifully… it is this…..

My favorite part of homeschooling is the home part. My least favorite part is the school part.

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Kids teaching each other and their animals ūüôā

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Our table – always full of school books and food.

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Reading time ūüôā

A year ago we moved from Ohio to Oregon. Before we moved, we made the decision to homeschool,¬†mostly¬†based on the fact that we’re crazy. Also, the timing of our move, our unknown housing situation and limited school options contributed to our decision. But I was willing and ready for this school adventure. Friends in Ohio encouraged us in our first homeschool endeavor. They gave me books, websites, helpful suggestions. Still. I had so much anxiety and apprehension.

Once we landed in Oregon, new friends cheered me on – telling me lies, “You’ll¬†be¬†a great¬†HM! You CAN do this! Give yourself grace, you just moved ACROSS THE FLIPPIN’ COUNTRY!” I felt better when they would give me these pep talks. For a few minutes at least.

It was super stressful moving and homeschooling. I gained 20 lbs — 5 lbs before we moved, stressing over selling our house in Ohio, 5 lbs living with our parents¬†and moving again into our rental, aaaand 10 lbs homeschooling.¬†

IT’S BEEN GREAT!!!¬†

Still. I remained encouraged knowing I had great friends near me, and across the country in Ohio, and across the world in India who were also homeschooling….. aaaaand I had a little moto I would tell myself to laugh thru day sometimes….. “Homeschooling, Unschooling, We¬†don’t know what the heck we’re¬†doing.”

As challenging as homeschooling was for ME¬†– the HM, the kids did a fantastic job!! They did their best with the tools they had, and amidst the transition they were walking thru with the stress of moving to a new state, new friends, new church… leaving behind their old house, old friends, old church. And I could not be more proud of them. So, this year we may not have learned everything we needed to know, but there is one thing I know for certain…..

The kids are going —> B A C K TO S C H O O L !!! <— 09.08.15

Have you homeschooled? What was your experience like? I’d love to hear from you! Please share and follow our journey! In Him, Leslie ūüôā

I See You

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The world around me swirls and I am caught up in the motion. So many people in need. Abandoned. Alone. At risk. So many people enslaved. They need help. They need rescue. They need freedom. They need me. What can I do but pray? I can pray.

But what else? There must be more. There is more.

I am available. USE ME. I want to break down walls. But now I only see the walls. I see too much. It becomes too much. I can not see it all. It becomes a blur. I am burdened. I am sad. In the recesses of my heart are cries too deep for words.

I am still.

He speaks.

I listen.

I ask.

Do you see them, God? DO YOU? Why not rescue? Why not freedom? Why not deliverance?

In a moment, in worship… He whispers…¬†I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM.

This same evening, I read with my daughter Exodus 3. Moses is drawn to the bush.  Believing he was unseen. NO. He was not unseen. I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM.

I feel like Moses. I can not compare to Moses. But I feel what he might have felt. He saw his people enslaved. He wanted to see justice. He wanted to break down walls. He took the judgement into his own hands. He killed. Afraid, he ran. To a desert hiding place. Yet found again, embraced by a father. He tends his father in laws flock. I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM. He is found again. He can not hide.

I have heard the cries of the people. My brothers and sisters across the earth in need of deliverance. I want to scream at every injustice. I want to obliterate the evil in this world. Yet He calls me to SEE as HE SEES. He calls me to see the wounded and the one who wounds. He calls me to see the abused and the abuser. He calls me to see the broken and the one who breaks. He calls me to see the prisoner and the guard. When the walls come down, they are ALL in need of freedom and deliverance.

He beckons me to know His voice and TRUST. 

I am doing what I see my Father doing. I am shepherding. I am caring for a flock. Yet I am drawn to the bush. The bush which never ceases to burn. My heart¬†groans as the bush burns. The Spirit intercedes. He gently shows me…

I need to TRUST.

I heard the Lord speak in the whisper, in the moment of worship – I SEE YOU. I SEE THEM. My heart responds – I KNOW. I WILL TRUST.

God speaks. I see the affliction of My people… I have heard their cry… I know their sufferings… I have come to deliver them.

Sin abounds. All hell has broken loose on the earth. Hopelessness is center stage. Are we forgotten? Maybe you have felt? Maybe you have asked? But NO. We are not forgotten. HE SEES US. HE SEES THEM.

Rescue is coming for ALL. I know it. I will tend my flock as Moses did. Until the time comes when God says GO.

What is your spirit groaning for? Share and let me know ~ In Him, Leslie