Homeschooling on the Farm

Yes, I know it’s summer. And you may be asking why am I still ‘schooling’ my children. Don’t worry, there isn’t much pressure here. We’re pretty relaxed. We just ask that the kids finish a unit in their math book (ends up being about 6 pages of math) a week, journal in the morning, and read something. See, I’m not so hard-nosed. Both kids know that if they buckle down and finish their math book, they can be done with math for the summer. In past summers, that has been enticing. This summer? Not so much.

To their delight, I announced that August was a ‘Journal-Free’ month. Woo. Hoo. One thing off their morning chores list.

Anyway, yesterday was a beautiful day for a homeschooling mother.

Music Man worked in the garden yesterday pulling weeds out of the pathways  for me. I decided to join him in the garden to help keep him motivated. As I picked green beans, we chatted. Now, just so you know, I’ve been asking God to help me enjoy my kids more. I’m a bit of a task master and relationships can easily slip out of reach as I tend to put tasks before people. I’ve felt that happening with my family and knew it was not good. So this precious time in the garden with my 14 year old was a divine appointment really.

I don’t remember much about what was said. I’m sure it had to do with a musical artist or two. But then it happened. As he was feeding weeds through the fence to the baby goats, my son began to ask me to identify the different plants growing around him. “Is that corn, Mom?” My kids have never expressed any interest in gardening. They know I love it, but they seemed to have always been indifferent. So, of course, I took great pleasure labeling our edible botany. And then I watched with excitement as he enjoyed sampling some onion tops, broccoli and sugar snap peas. My heart was singing.

And then I had the aha! moment. If I’m this excited about him being interested in my stuff, how much would it make his day if I did the same to his. That’s my next prayer. Help me to stop long enough to find out what that is, and then enjoy it. Concentrate on the relationship, Kathleen.

When Music Man finished his Farm Chores, he headed to the living room couch where he planted himself until early evening. What was he doing? No, it wasn’t video games. He was reading. That’s right, he finished his book in 2 days. Ahhh. Again, my heart was singing. Because Music Man was reading all day, Soccer Boy found himself reading too.  It was so quiet in the house. Perfect for a day of researching Homeschooling High School.

Now, I LOVE to read. I am a little bit of a freak about it. I currently have 10 books  just on my night stand. They are all nonfiction. Yes, I’m a nerd. I admit it. But my children have not been lovers of words. I have done everything I can imagine to inspire them, but it just isn’t something they would typically carve out time in their day to do. There have been moments when they have. You know, when they’re into a book they just can’t put down. It does happen. It’s just more than the exception than the rule. So, when a child of mine spends the day reading, I get giddy. Yes. It is pure ecstasy.

Thank you, Lord, for such a fabulous day. Thanks for redeeming the heart of this old selfish soul. There is hope.


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About kathleen

I'm a stay at home chicken momma with 2 boys and a very understanding husband. In December of '09, we moved to our dream farm. I'm excited to try to become more self-sufficient. So far I have 1 rooster, 9 chickens, 2 goats (some babies on their way this spring), 1 llama, a dog, and a cat. Come along and join us, as we city-slickers figure out how to make our own homestead. You're sure to be entertained.
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7 Responses to Homeschooling on the Farm

  1. stephanie says:

    I just love this Kathleen! I struggle sometimes with my son, because he loves to read, and does so all the time. I’ve even had to set limits on him at times because nothing else will get done. But, I’m also a reader and struggle with limiting myself too, so I feel for him, I really do! My girl isn’t much of a reader, but I do hold out hope for her to eventually enjoy it also. Thank you for the insight you have given me here. ??? wonderful!

  2. Dawna says:

    This was a great post and gave me things to think about. I love that about you and your writing.

    By-the-way you are an exceptional writer and communicator.

  3. Wendy says:

    Ahhhhhh, nice!

  4. joan porter says:

    What a sweet blog from a sweet Mom. I’m so glad the two of you spent a day in the garden together. And I know Grandma Gallaher can hardly wait for you to get to heaven to help her with her celestial plants. She was always so disappointed that I didn’t share her love for earth and weeds and such. And I can still remember the look of shock on her face after she pain stakingly showed me how to plant a flower garden in our firt new home and returned weeks later to discover that I’d mistakenly pulled up all the little flower sprouts believing they were weeds. Alas, that was my last attempt at planting flower seeds. Now, I just head for the garden section of Freddies every year to purchase those wonderful plastic containers of blooming flowers. I love the idea of gardening I really do. I think I’m intimidated by it. But, I must say you inspire me to at least think about buying some seeds and doing a small garden next spring.

  5. Connie says:

    Absolutely beautiful, my dear… both content and expression. Our kids really ARE profound treasures. And sometimes in “task” mode I can forget. Thanks!! 🙂

  6. Rachel says:

    Great stuff Kath….
    I’m wondering what books they were reading. Books for boys is a hard thing.

  7. Lobug says:

    Love this. I need these reminders too. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    And if you ever need recipes for grass-fed beef, let me know, it’s all I use. 🙂

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