January 5, 2009

This Year is Not That Year

Well, we are mid-way through our 18th year of home schooling. In all those years we've only had what I'd call One Golden Year.
What that means is
-one year where our marriage was thriving
-one year where my relationship with the Lord was thriving
-one year where we were quite comfortable financially
-one year where all the boys were still at home, but independent and creative enough that I had some free time. (As opposed to now where I have some free time, but it's intermingled with the heartache of a half-empty nest.)
-one year where all the boys liked their curriculum
-one year where I stayed on top of lesson plans and grading
-one year where school seemed fun for all of us-I was creative and we had a lot of hands-on activities.
-one year where the rivalry of siblings was at an all time low
-one year where I was able to keep the house fairly clean and felt organized and was able to plan healthy meals for our family
-one year where I felt like I wasn't stretched too thin by outside activities but wasn't a hermit either
-one year where I had tons of energy and felt great
-one year where I felt completely confident and was sure the boys were actually learning something

And all this during one. Single. School. Year! No wonder it seemed like a Golden Year.

I'd like to tell you this year is not that year. This year has been normal. It's been filled with weariness, doubts about curriculum, and piles of math papers waiting to be graded.
That year we should've been photographed and placed on the front cover of several, if not all, the home school magazines being published.

The amazing thing to me is this. We've had One Golden Year. If you do the math, that leaves 17 years of Not-So-Golden. However, even without piles of gold to stumble over, three of our sons have grown into young men who love Jesus. They love others. They hunger for the Word. They
have jobs they actually get paid to do and they can even read and write.

The Lord is able to Accomplish with or without the shiny stuff.

7 comments:

  1. I think you should be published on the cover of all the homeschool magazines because you're just so darn cute! Oh, and that with faith you can perservere to reap the rewards of all that hard work. Ya, that too. Kudos.

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  2. You've done so well with your boys. Thanks for putting this all in perspective.

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  3. So when Mical turns your life story into an entire series of "Little House by the Woods", "On the Shores of Heritage Lake", and so forth, one book will be called, "That Happy Golden Year"? :)

    I'm glad you don't always have it all together. Thanks for admitting you don't live a perfect life. You are so approachable because of that!
    The good news is that, you write a list that says "we had only one year when x, y, and z...."
    But we can also write a list of "we had 18 years of God being faithful, of learning lessons from God's schoolhouse, of finding His grace to be enough to overcome disasters, of His hand touching the lives of all of us."

    And, yep, your kids came out just fine. :)
    So far........

    Hope you are having a great day! Ignore the clouds--there's blue sky right above them.

    Alex

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  4. PS Borrow "Portable Sounds" if you need to kick your day up a notch.
    Alec and Barrett will show ya how to dance to it. :)

    Alex

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  5. Your sons are truly amazing young men and I would love to know more about your parenting. You kept their hearts (not an easy task) and it's obvious in their passion for Christ *and* their adoration toward you.

    Now, about that year,...what are you trying to say? Because if you only had one golden year, I'm thinking I better not hold out for more than a golden MONTH, lol.
    Blessings,
    ~Toni~

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  6. This is really helpful to me. I keep trying, praying, waiting for everything to fall into place and for our family to be perfectly-organized with everything just right...And it somehow never happens...Our life is beautiful, don't get me wrong...But when I'm strong in one area, another doesn't measure up. It really helps to know that it's OK and normal to have these ups and downs. It doesn't mean there is something wrong with me! Unfortunately that's not what you hear from some homeschool "experts" who lead you to believe that if you are doing everything "right" your house will be white-glove clean at all times, your kids fed perfect organic food, dressed in immaculate handmade clothes, all headed for Ivy League schools, and so on. Ha!

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  7. Your boys are A M A Z I N G !!!

    And you are too! Keep pushing through those "not so Golden Years." God is using you for even greater things than you know!

    Love you and praying for you!!!

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