Earlier this week I listened to Hip Homeschooling’s podcast episode “Truth in the Trenches” and was inspired to write my own version. I think it’s important that homeschool parents are honest about our lives. It’s a tough gig and often times we focus on the good without reflecting on what our homes really look like. Some of these confessions my closest friends probably don’t even know. My mom most definitely doesn’t know all of them!
1. I spend the majority of my day in bed.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not laying around all day. I work in my bed. Experts will say it’s not healthy; that the bed should be only for sleeping and sex. However I have a chronic pain condition and the comfiest place for me to work is in my bed. We have even done school in bed on some of my worst days.
2. We homeschool on the couch and/or floor.
Most of what we do is online or on our tablets. We have a laptop connected to the TV to access websites/videos we use. All our books are on Kindle. We play games on the floor. Our dining table has become an extension of the kitchen due to limited counter space and is currently covered in baking supplies. B has taken to making chocolate chip cookies.
3. I am such an introvert I need timeouts from my kid.
Those that know me well know I’m an introvert. Those that think they know me argue with me on this. The truth is that as much as I love my kid, pouring out my time and attention on him while homeschooling drains all the life out of me. Luckily, he’s an introvert too. Not as bad as me, but still, he gets it.
4. I don’t eat lunch with my kid.
My mom may lecture me on this one, but if I’m being honest, this is probably the most shocking thing a homeschool mom could admit to. Being introverts we eat our lunch while doing our own thing to give us a bit of personal downtown. It is especially important for us when we don’t finish what we call “together work” in the mornings. B will either play Minecraft or watch YouTube videos. I will watch Netflix, a webinar or listen to a podcast. We’re in the same room, but we both have headphones on and generally don’t talk to each other for an hour.
5. I have a love/hate relationship with planners.
OK, 100% disclosure – I hate printed planners. I love the idea of a planner in my hand that I can pull out and look at, colour code and look all important with. I hate writing things down with pen on paper. ToDoist.com is how I organize my overall life. My Google calendar tells me where to be and when. Trello is our homeschool planner and how I prep unit studies. Cozi.com is how I plan all our meals.
6. I usually spend an hour or less planning a week of lessons.
I don’t know how much time people spend on homeschool planning. It would vary wildly depending on how you homeschool. For those like me, that scour the internet for free/cheap curriculum, an hour a week doesn’t seem like a long time. In that hour I review all the curriculum I currently have, formulate a plan and figure out what we will use the following week and then print off what I need to print off. This hour of planning does not include cutting and laminating printables. The trick is having a framework for planning.
7. I hate cutting and laminating printables.
If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen the pic of B laminating printables. He loves laminating things. I loathe cutting and laminating stuff. Sometimes B has to do it in order to play the super cool game I found him. I have a stack of things waiting to either be cut out or laminated almost all the time.
8. I have alarms for EVERYTHING!
Seriously, I have an alarm for when to start school; when to make lunch; when to make dinner (even when it’s in the crockpot); and when B needs to get ready for bed. I even have three notifications for everything in my calendar – 1 hour before (to give me time to get ready), half hour before (to hurry up), and 15 minutes before (to get B ready). I have zero sense of time. I either get lost and lose track of time or check the clock every ten minutes.
9. Homeschooling is teaching me how to let go.
In addition to bipolar and anxiety I have also been diagnosed with OCD. Which makes me a bit of a control freak about certain things. If you ever visit my home, don’t move anything in my kitchen. I’ll lose it! But with B home and helping with housework more I am learning to take a deep breath when something is out of place. Printables no longer have to be cut perfectly. Some printables are cut out just enough that we can use them but not actually trimmed.
10. Coffee and chocolate make my world go round.
Not a big shocker to my friends or family. The real shocker for those that know me is I usually only have one cup of coffee and don’t normally keep chocolate in the house. I used to drink a pot of coffee before heading to the office. I also used to have at least two or three chocolate bars in the house at all times. The only chocolate we keep stocked is chocolate chips. I have eaten those on days I need chocolate but don’t want to go outside.
So, those are my top 10 confessions. What confessions do you have?