Updated: Oct 7, 2020
I often describe our homeschooling journey as a grand adventure. This notion of mine that homeschooling can be an adventure was shared in a group and was met with a raging SnarkFest.
Life isn't always fun lady, Suck it up!
You have to do things you don't want to do in life, deal with it!
I'm not here to be your cruise director!
I'm not here to entertain my children!
On and on.
What's weird is I don't really disagree with ONE of those truths.
Life isn't always fun.
We must do things we don't want to do.
I'm not the Cruise Director.
I'm not here to entertain them.
Agree, across the board however...
Life isn't always fun, but instead of "sucking it up"perhaps we can adjust our paradigm a bit and look for the good in it. Like, how about instead of being bitter about mowing the grass and doing yard work, we choose to be grateful for a home with a yard where we can play and when we are finished we actually play in it.
We must do things we don't want to do. Yep. But we can do those things with a joyful heart. We can count it ALL joy.
I'm not the Cruise Director. Most moms schedule activities for the children that seems more like a Cruise Director to me. Those people schedule activities they don't join in them. Relaxed homeschoolers raise children who know how to create their own adventures firstly but they also enjoy being with and engaging with their kids. It's very different.
I'm not here to entertain them. Actually they entertain me. We enjoy life together. I actually enjoy my children. I like playing with them. I like learning with them. Learning about the stars, or tadpoles, or kinetic energy is so cool.
I do not understand the kick back from homeschool moms to the spirit of joyful homeschooling. Homeschooling can be an adventure every single day. But only if you see life that way.
Your paradigm determines how you see the whole world. If you subscribe to the belief that homeschooling is a great sacrifice and moms who do this work are martyrs to their family it's going to be hard to fin joy in it. It disturbs the narrative. How can I be a martyr if I love my job? If I enjoy my days? If I find great meaning and adventure in this ordinary life?
We lost everything in Hurricane Katrina. When I describe all we went through, I might well say it was one heck of an adventure. It was. Adventure doesn't necessarily mean "unicorns and rainbows" as one particularly bitter mom said to me last week. Sometimes our daily adventure is staying inside on a cold day with a roaring fire in the fire place, homemade hot chocolate, the Narnia books on CD playing while the kids play Legos in the floor.
It's not necessary for me to construct Jumanji for them everyday.
I do like to create Jumanji days sometimes though. It's how I roll. This is the life I enjoy. Maybe it's a wild hair that makes me buy a ginormous, complex hamster habitat at a garage sale for $25 and hide it until Monday. Then wake the kids up and take them to the pet store to buy hamsters, food, and bedding. I have a lot of wild hairs then.
I don't know why on warm rainy days I pack us up with towels and we go to the park to play in the rain. It's fun?
Finger Painting. Slip n' Slides. Making our own popsicles. Building bird houses. Learning how to repair our bikes and going for a long ride and a picnic. Writing a play all week, making costumes and performing it for friends on Friday Night. A million adventures.
It's weird how quickly and effortlessly chores are accomplished when adventure awaits. It's remarkable how efficiently Math Drills are completed when adventure awaits. It's beautiful when at the end of a wonderful day everyone is sharing the day with dad over dinner. Then piling around the living room to listen to dad read aloud.
We manage to have a great life, filled with adventures and we get the laundry done. We learn. We cook everyday. We have a well run, neat and orderly home.
I don't understand the rolling eyes or the anger. It's not for everyone. This week I saw a Snarky Mommy video with two upper middle class women saying they don't enjoy playing with their kids. Okay. Whatever.
I happen to love playing. I happen to love being with my children and my grandchildren. Combining the two is like winning the lottery. I am so thankful that I never lost the part of me that enjoyed playing.
I love baby dolls, and Barbies. I love Legos and Hot Wheels. I love soaking up childhood through my children's eyes. On the floor with them is the best place.
We sold our children's event and party company a couple years ago. We were event planners and hosted huge children's events, and elaborate parties. I love Tea Parties, Mermaid Parties, Superhero Parties. I'd be right in the thick of it, cracking up at all the things the children say and do. Their parents would be outside on the deck drinking wine with friends. I'm sure everyone had a good time, that's totally fine. For me, I'd rather enjoy the kids. I write and I share this lifestyle for people who enjoy it too.
There is no shaming, no guilt being induced in this post, or in this lifestyle. I share this because it's okay to enjoy your kids. It's okay to Relax and have fun. It's even okay to create a family and paradigm where we try to see the world as beautiful instead of a life we have to suck up and endure. Obstacles become challenges. Ordinary because extraordinary when you share it with people you love.
The world is bent on negativity. Everywhere you turn is anger, division, harshness. The world is harsh. Home can be a shelter from the harshness of the world. It can a sanctuary. It can even be a beautiful adventure. If you live this life or want to live this life, you're in the right place.