Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Is it really Monday?

I can't say this often because Mondays are usually the worst days ever in our home and school.  We have had a great day!  The changes we made to our school day are phenomenal.  I think Dad being home this weekend and knowing that corn harvest is over has helped tremendously as well.  I have a lot more prep work for this new format, but if the result will be more days like this and less of me screaming half the day, I'll take it! 
Maybe what my kids needed was more of me!  More of Dad, too!  I am giving my kids more independence in extracurricular activities as they get older, but it is really important still that their entire days are not self-directed.  They need some order and direction or they truly cannot function.  I think this is why even as a homeschool parent, I still yearn for the school year to begin.  Some parents are anxious to get the kids out of their hair and into the schools, but maybe ... maybe the kids want/need to have some order.  Even as an adult, when I have nothing to occupy my time or nothing to do, I am chaos.  That wasn't a typo, I feel like I am the definition of chaos in those moments.  My husband was off work from Friday until Sunday - a rare thing - and he was very ready to go back to work.  He had to run errands on Friday and we met friends Friday evening and Church Saturday evening, and Sunday morning and Fellowship group Sunday evening, but there was a lot of idle time in there.  For certain, we need the Sabbath rest that God ordained for us, but idleness becomes mental chaos.
I think that was happening to an extent in our homeschool.  Yes, my kids had assignments, but all they were given was a list of tasks, a time to start, a time to have breaks and an expected end time.  For me, that would be great!  I'm an adult who's efficient with my time and has had to learn it over the years.  I might as well have been giving them a manual and some parts and asked them to build a car.  Face to face learning is where I wanted to be with our school, but felt incompetent or unable to do it.  I didn't know how to effectively educate my kids with my voice, my hands, my face...  Today has been a good day!
I think every family will have their curriculum choices, but beyond that choice, I feel that engaging my children with my voice, face and my own style in the midst of our curriculum for at least 15 minutes of every hour has been effective for the whole week last week and today.  They are responding well and today in an angry moment, I was looking at my son's face and saw the expression and we both melted and it ended in understanding of one another.  I still had time for personal Bible Study and lesson planning.  It was just mixed in with the encounter moments.  Hmmmm.  Why does it take so long to figure everything out? 

Thursday, November 6, 2014


This school year began with changes in our curriculum.  We decided certainly that we wanted to continue with Story of the World, Spelling Power, and Apologia Science.  We struggled with liking the other subjects, and I had been exploring Easy Peasy All-In-One Homeschool since last school year and decided to go with it.  It is a great program and it is free!  We used it for every subject except the 3 I first mentioned.  It was the perfect choice for us to begin with.  The kids learned about self-motivation and I got a break from planning.
The longer we did Easy Peasy, the more disconnected I began to feel as a parent-teacher.  My passion for homeschool is partly a passion to teach my kids.  It was turning into the computer teaching my kids.  Let me clarify.  I think Easy Peasy is awesome and the work that Lee put into it is incredible.  I do believe that if you are not called to be a teacher, but called to homeschool, this might be a great option of curriculum for you.
The literature choices that my kids were reading are great pieces, but I did not grow up with literature because our small town didn't have a library.  If you have a local library, you are blessed!  I had never read Gulliver's Travels or Swiss Family Robinson and the further my kids got into the books, the more disconnected I felt from their work.  We were headed into Penrod and The Peterkin Papers which not only had I not read, but I had never heard of these books.  At the conclusion of one child's book and in the middle of another, I made the decision to drop Easy Peasy from our curriculum.  I still use it as a guide for our daily Bible reading and it helped me organize my education planning.  I just purchased a grammar program and a writing program that I can use with both of my children at the same time and I have chosen 4 books at each of their levels to read for the rest of the school year.  I'm going to have us read the books and have discussion with them, but we are going to enjoy reading for school.
Well that's just language arts, what about other important subjects?  Because this is my children's 3rd math program, they quickly got overwhelmed by math.  They started in Everyday Mathematics and as I went to homeschooling from Private school, I chose not to continue it because the teacher's manuals were too expensive.  I didn't care for the fact that they don't teach long division at all and really lack in math facts.  I just about went into a rant about Common Core, but I will stop with that.  I took my kids to Horizons Math with a false presumption that they were advanced in math because of the previous curriculum and didn't want to dumb it down.  Horizons may have been perfect if we had started with it, but it assumes that you've had a foundation in that style of math so there were areas that my children felt lost in.  Easy Peasy math came with many games which they liked, but there were concepts that frustrated or confused them.  BUT she, the author of Easy Peasy, recommends Xtramath to those struggling with math facts.  WE DO THIS every day.  I've seen so much growth and we haven't even gotten past addition facts yet.  For middle school, she recommends a few programs including Khan Academy.  I had heard of this before, and played with it a bit last school year as well.  I completely put my 6th grader on Khan academy about a month ago and assigned 6th grade math to him.  He works on it for 30 minutes a day and at the end of the year, he should have complete mastery of 6th grade concepts.  Currently he's mastered about 40%.  Last week I did the same for my 4th grader and she is already flying through mastering 4th grade concepts.  This is at their pace and if they cannot understand something, there are a series of videos to help.  When they are really stuck, I go through things with them.  Another fun thing with Khan is that I am doing it too so that I can know what they are working with.  I have currently mastered 100% of Early Math and about 80% of 3rd grade math.  I have chosen to start at the beginning so that there will be nothing that I can't help my kids with when they're stuck.  Yes, I love to learn as much as I love to teach.
Computer skills.  I know that these are imperative to teach and I know enough about computers to be dangerous.  I have computer common sense, and a little more, but I want my kids to know more.  It just so happens that Khan Academy has a computer programing tract as well, so I have them do a lesson and practice on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Easy Peasy also recommended a free typing program called Good Typing that we began to use early on.  They have to practice typing every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  How are they going to be good at computers if they can't type?
Finally, because of the author of Easy Peasy's fantastic organization, I have decided to do music on Mondays, PE/Health on Wednesdays and Art on Fridays.  We get a little of those things mixed in with other curricula, but I wanted to have a specific pattern of these things with intentional time dedicated to these subjects.  I am teaching my daughter to play the piano with some books I got on Amazon.com and my son is learning guitar through tutorials and I am learning it with him because I was hoping to do so anyhow. 
It was recommended to me not to keep changing things, but I am seeing my children thrive with each step of change that we do.  I appreciate the perspective of other seasoned homeschool moms, too, so I'm praying about each step.  This week as I wait for my new language curriculum to arrive, I've cut out Language arts except that I'm doing a read-aloud every day for them and we read the Bible together every day now.  Our classroom schooling has been done in record time this week.  My kids are happier and I'm happier.  They are excited as they are going to start A Wrinkle In Time and Meet Addy this weekend to prepare for next week's lessons.  And I'm excited because I have a great excuse to use Pinterest now!

Monday, October 27, 2014

So you had a bad day!

I cannot lie, homeschooling is NOT always a beautiful harmonious one big happy family thing.  There are days where at least one or all of you just want to throw in the towel and scream!  You give an inch and the kids take a mile.  Mom blows up and all the children are crying!  Dad gets out the enrollment forms for the area schools ... then you weigh your options.
Is it because we homeschool that we fight?  No.  We are family and we are comfortable enough around each other that we can be real.  Real isn't always pretty!  We are humans!  Sometimes we are selfish, sometimes we don't feel like doing ANYTHING!  Because we don't have a workplace or a school zone where we have to conform and put on our masks for a while, we just let all of our realness show to each other.  The days where more than one of us are feeling really real at the same time ......... EXPLOSION! 
I'd like to say that I'm the mom who exhibits the fruit of the spirit with excellence every day, but I'm not.  I try to live by the Spirit and I even exercised and read my Bible this morning and had a banana and Mini Wheats and coffee - 2 cups now, but my tolerance for goofing off lid blew off. 
The fruit of the spirit are ... LOVE ... that's easy especially for my family.  Unconditionally my heart strings are pulled even in discipline, I love my husband and kids and even the crazy dog who has an uncontrollable urge to dig in the trash can right now.  JOY ... This may not make sense, but I do have joy even in the midst of irritation.  PEACE ... well there's a rocky place.  I have no worries, but I'm not creating an atmosphere of peace.  PATIENCE ... Well, I got an F this morning.  Setting timers, giving space ... kids not accomplishing things ...  okay suffice to say I failed.  KINDNESS ... okay another failure.  I did work on it a little.  GOODNESS ... I don't even know what to say about that.  It is good to be consistent, not good to lose it.  FAITHFULNESS ... My expectations have not changed and that is good for the kids.  GENTLENESS ... My loud voice may not be considered gentleness.  What time is it?  How much do you have done?  5 minutes worth of work in an hour and a half?  Go get a snack and get down here ready to work!!!!  At least I gave us a break from each other and hoped that the possibility of hunger could affect concentration.  :/ Maybe!  SELF-CONTROL win and lose!  Yes, I yelled, no, I didn't smash.  I have been known to throw things or slam something onto the table or desk to physically get rid of anger and avoid hurting someone, but I managed to maintain some sense of self-control.
Why am I sharing about a bad moment and risking the wrong people reading this and declaring me unfit to ... fill in the blank, I'm sure there are many things I'm unfit for.  But I feel guilty at times when people say I'm doing a good job or being a good mom or good anything.  Honestly as I reviewed the Fruit of the Spirit just now, I was actually calming down and my sweet child was on the phone with Daddy to sort out what Mommy didn't have patience to deal with.  Bad days happen.  Getting through them happens too, one way or another.  I have a feeling that this one is getting better already.
Several years ago, I discovered that children bring out the rawest and worst part of me.  Even when my children were infants, sometimes I wondered how to make them stop crying.  I actually did leave my toddler in the living room while shutting myself in my bedroom for 10 minutes to collect my nerves.  I couldn't believe that I'd prayed for so long to have children and after having them, they were sucking the life out of me ... not really, I just thought it a time or six.  I prayed and asked God how in the world I was going to learn how to parent.  Where is the manual?  The thing that leapt at me from what seemed to be the depths of me was Galatians 5:22-23.  But the fruit of the spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.  Against such things there is no law.  I am not sure what translation because that was a quote from my heart and it could have errors.  The fruit of the Spirit as a parenting manual?  Why yes!  I don't know if it will help me through the teen years, but seriously when I go through a situation mindful of these beautiful fruit, I know better how to respond. 
I just took a sip of coffee and looked at the wall behind my computer where sits a certificate made by my kids.  "World's best teacher"  I almost choked.  That's funny!  I might just be the world's best teacher for them, though.  In good times or bad times.  Yes, maybe Mommy learned the bigger lesson today.  Maybe I just need to have a "fruit" break every time I sense the bad day thing coming on.  As I don't get to sit and type a whole blog at once, since starting this post, things are running beautifully here at LSA.  Kids are on task and self-motivated.  Ahhhhhh!  Monday, you do not have the victory this week!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Scholar's Bowl

As we have entered into Junior High or Middle School homeschooling, I am discovering new opportunities.  Our local Christian school has invited my son to participate in sports and other exta-curricular activities.  The one we are currently doing is Scholar's Bowl.  I've never explored it before and it is interesting.  The first meet is next Monday and my boy has only gotten to be in on one practice.  He came home only getting one answer correct.  This was a little surprising to me, because my kids are good students.
This morning, I opened up a webpage of Middle School scholar's bowl type questions and began to read them aloud to see how many things they could answer.  I have seen the show, Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader?, and I am sometimes smarter than a 5th grader, but I'm not a scholar's bowl champ!  We are not sports fans and couldn't answer any of the sport questions.  We rarely watch television and therefore don't get much NEWS.  I prefer to read the NEWS and that makes my kids' knowledge of current events minimal.  We've talked about weather and ebola and some other things, but what this politician says about that one, thankfully, is NOT filling our home.  I do confess Redbox, Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video are our friends.
We could answer correctly about jet streams, solar panels, the crusades and the capital of Quebec.  My kids didn't know who Andy Warhol is and the clue was his prints of Marilyn Monroe.  They don't know her either.  So am I a failure as a homeschool teacher?  I believe, NO!  Here is why.  IF I were raising my kids to be what's his name that won Jeopardy so many times in a row, then I am failing.  I'm not!  I'm teaching my children to have good character even though some days no one could tell.  I am teaching them how to read and write and do math and know the history of the world and where in the world to find Carman San Diego. (not exactly)  I'm not indoctrinating them in theology, but letting them read the Bible for themselves and discuss it with me.  They have to try foreign food ... even if I don't cook it right.  They have to participate in house work and just suffered through the punishment of no movies or shows until their rooms were clean INCLUDING under their beds.  Oh the horror! 
The truth is that I have very few adult friends who could win at trivial pursuit if they didn't have a team.  Random facts won't determine our eternity and so while it is fun to learn trivia, it really is trivial in the grand scheme of things.  We will continue with scholar's bowl as long as they allow us to participate because I don't think its wrong.  I just don't want to base my success or failure or that of my children on how many of the questions they got right.  Did they learn something?  I hope so!  That will be a reward.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Normal?? HAHAHA!!! Is there such a thing?


[nawr-muh l]                  
1. conforming to the standard or the common type; usual; not abnormal; regular; natural.
2. serving to establish a standard.
This is part of the entry from dictionary.com and I really don't know that we have a common type or standard to go by here at our school.  I don't think we can be defined by others either ... even those who use the exact curriculum mix that we do.  I'm not even sure that anyone else is doing exactly what we're doing.  That's the beauty of homeschool and the difficulty all wrapped in one.  There is no one to consult regarding your specific situation and there is no one like you.
I keep thinking that it would be great to have a normal school day, but the proper term would likely be ideal.  This week we are scheduled to have an ideal school day Wednesday and Thursday.  I'm sick today and my son is getting sick with head colds.  Braces appointment this afternoon.  Playing Hymns at the nursing home tomorrow and scholar's bowl practice tomorrow in the middle of the school day.  I'm okay with interruptions, but I like things to be orderly and predictable.
Breathe in ...
Breathe out ...
It really is going to be okay.  Expect the unexpected.  The kids will learn what they need to learn!  I think I'm doing better now too.  As I began to homeschool, weeks like this would put me in the grumpiest mood before we even start.  Now, well, I have bigger fish to fry.  Things outside of this little home school, but I don't need to delve into them here. 
Homeschooling is not our sole identity.  We have other obligations and for me several of them are due by the end of this week, so I need to direct my attention to them and not freak out because we are not normal and we don't have normal days.  We occasionally have an ideal day here and there, but I guess today may just be a normal day - scattered and unplanned - while Wednesday has a slim chance of being ideal, but abnormal.
I would not change my normal for someone else's normal.  This is the best life for me.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Hump Day

So a lot of people call Wednesday hump day.  Well it is in the middle of the week like the hump of a camel is in the middle of it's back.  Climbing the hill and after you get to the top, you can roll down the next one.  Our school week actually is only 3 days long this week because I'm busting out of here tomorrow to go to a women's conference with my church.  I'm so looking forward to time with the girls!!!  Yesterday truly did feel like a hump and we are definitely rolling down the hill today!  Almost all subjects are done by now and it's just about lunch time. 
Not only are we moving along, BUT, my darling daughter actually got 100% correct on her multiplication by a double digit worksheet!  She has been whining for a week that these problems are too hard.  I told her if she gets 100% on line 1 she can skip line 2 and she did it!!!  This was the first time she's done 3 digit by 2 digit too.
Next Monday is braces day, so we'll only do 1/2 day of school in the morning and braces for the girl in the afternoon.  Then we can have an almost normal rest of the week. 
Sukkot starts tonight and yet another year goes by without a Sukkah to begin the feast.  Maybe Tuesday?  This is one of my kids' favorite Bible holidays and we really want to figure it out and actually try and celebrate it.  I need to just buy a tent frame so we can use it annually.

Monday, October 6, 2014


School stinks on appointment days!!!  I would call off school when I have to get a dental filling except that I'm going to a women's conference Thursday through Saturday and so we won't have school then.  I don't know how people who run all the time can do homeschool.  We got home at 10:30 and one child still doesn't have work done from last FRIDAY!  It is almost 3 PM!  OK in defense of my children, I'm having a bad day and that really reflects on how they act.  I had to run to the church library and post office too this morning.  It seems they work better when I am nearby. 
Here's to tomorrow!!!

Friday, October 3, 2014

No longer a servant

John 15:15 (NIV)  I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
Our servant day is complete and our slave day is complete.  The kids fulfilled their contracts on Wednesday and earned themselves Sonic milk shakes.  Kind of a mistake for me because that was a lot of sugar before bed.  Live and learn! 
Yesterday, the kids were slaves.  I was a kind master and only had them pick things up that I dropped a few times.  They were repulsed at the thought of touching my feet.  I would be too if they weren't attached to me, so I didn't make them give me a foot massage.  Previously, I typed out random chores on slips of paper and put them in a pencil bag.  It was from a ransom box idea I found on Pinterest, but I felt it would work for this too.  At the beginning of the day, they each had to draw 2 chores from the bag and each time they mouthed off or didn't obey quickly, they had to draw another chore.  This was fun for me and really for them too.  One child ended up with 6 chores and the other child 4.
Their chores were:
  1. clean the bathroom mirror while singing (I wish I'd recorded that one)
  2. clean an air vent with a toothbrush (I have a special one for cleaning only)
  3. vacuum the stairs
  4. wipe down a wall on the stairway
  5. pull weeds for 10 minutes
  6. clean out the ashes from the fireplace and clean up after yourself
  7. fold 10 pairs of socks
  8. wipe the table with a spray cleaner
  9. clean out the cabinet under the kitchen sink
  10. hand wash 3 dishes
They got no rewards for doing these chores, but they completed their tasks without complaining ... except the spray cleaner said to keep out of reach of children, so my daughter was freaking out about that one.  Once I told her not to eat the spray and she would be fine, she did her chore.

This morning at breakfast, I shared John 15:15 with the kids and we talked about slavery and how we are blessed to be free.  We also touched base on human trafficking without details about what was happening to the kids after they were taken from their families.  Even though we had our little experiment, my kids still have no idea what it would be like to be slaves and I cannot truly treat them as slaves ... not even for a day!  Hopefully some of our discussions and projects will stick with my kids so that when they're old, they appreciate freedom!

Thursday, October 2, 2014


So now that my children are growing up and I have a 6th grader, I am now realizing that I may be falling a bit behind in techy skills!  So as my son opens his own blog, I've realized that mine could use a little facelift!  I made a few changes and the background is no longer bookshelves, but something more representative of what we want to be as a school!  I do love books, though, and even laid back atmospheres are enhanced by good books!  I like the new look and hope readers do as well!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Slave vs Servant

This week we are learning the difference between indentured servitude and slavery.  Story of the World has many suggestions for extra activities following the chapters and we've chosen to do a day of servitude and a day of slavery.  The kids thought it was funny until we made contracts.  I added that they would clean the living room and dining room as well as the sink toilet of their bathroom.  They felt empowered by the right to refuse terms of a contract until I told them that I refuse to give a reward for something that already occurs on a daily basis in this home.  So only doing chores and school and behaving at church tonight was just not enough.  They became reluctant to participate until the reward was announced.  A medium milkshake at Sonic after church tipped the scale in my favor and we have signed contracts!


Tomorrow, the kids get to be my slaves and I'm working on a few things that may make them squirm!  They will have no choice!  I may have a foot massage and my nails painted by my little slaves.  I might even have them make me lunch.  As punishment for disobedience, they may have to watch me eat before eating any of their own snacks!  Hahaha!  The devious plans of a homeschool mom!

I'm liking this idea so much, I may have to start doing it weekly!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Getting into the swing of things

I suppose most families that home school have gotten into a great routine by now.  Our school has an expected pattern, but most days we fall short!  Today is our 50th day of school and we still are a bit off course much of the time.  Now to clarify, we have not done book school all 50 days.  We've gone on several educational field trips and have included sports in our physical education program starting in July.
I don't have a structured schedule as in we do math at this time and language at this time, but I do have a schedule where we start school at 8:30 AM and take scheduled breaks.  I let the kids decide which subject to start with.  Today, I started with history because we do it together on activity days and read aloud days and I like to get that over with.  Last week, we had 3 days of field trips or living education and 2 days of school.  Needless to say, yesterday was miserable getting back to the swing of things.  Its not like they have just started school and don't know what the expectations are.
We started the school year off with yet another new curriculum choice.  We are still using Story of the World and Apologia and Spelling Power, but for the rest of our subjects, we've made the switch to Easy Peasy All-In-One Homeschool .  We really do enjoy this and it requires a lot less planning for me!
I have made the mistake of letting a few days go and just trusting the kids to do their work while I do other things.  I then go to my gradebook to log assignments to find that they have only played the games on the site and not followed instructions to do the paper work required.  I quickly learned to have their assignment pages pulled up on my computer and ask them, "Where is that poem in ABCB format?" or "Did you write out definitions for these words?"  Usually my questions are met with a sigh of exasperation or a dumfounded look as if they didn't think they were really going to have to do that particular portion of the assignment.  Recently, I've not met as much unfinished work.  The part I don't understand is the fact that if the kids really focus on school, they could be done with book work in 3 hours or less each day and have time for documentaries or art studio or what I call living education.
One thing I've had to let go of is the idea that each subject needs a numerical and letter grade.  I see the point in high school for transcripts, but right now, I would rather see them learn and they are.  My gradebook app has 2 options.  One is grading scale and another is basically pass/fail.  How do you put a letter grade on someone working through a grammar game until they get 100% correct?  I really appreciate that my kids want to "win the game."  If I were to give a worksheet to them with the types of verbs and they got 50% correct on it and then we touched it again and then took a test where they got 70% correct and then move on, I don't think they would retain as much.  This personalization is something I love about home education!  I still give a numerical grade in language on some assignments, science on the vocabulary and review questions, history on the review questions if applicable and math on worksheets and online quizzes.  Typing, Bible, Spelling, Life Skills, Computer, Music, Art, and Physical Education are all given pass/fail in this school.  I was always graded with a letter grade in PE.  So subjective!  Most of our assignments are graded on a, you did it, or you didn't basis.  How can one grade a child with no artistic or athletic ability beside one who excels and not be swayed?  Life is not going to down grade an accountant who can only draw stick men.
Living Education to me is the time where you skip math class and go to the kitchen and make a recipe.  You ask the child to double the recipe and cook.  If the cake doesn't turn out on a recipe that you know is good, then math must not have been good or reading as they may have put baking powder in instead of baking soda.  Or we are studying Rosh Hashanah and make Challah, blow a shofar, read a story about it, go to the pond to cast our bread crumbs out on it.  Return to eat your bread and apples and honey.  Those things are great and some homeschools are solely living education.  I'm impressed with those who are able to do that, but for us I like the mixture. 
I'm not going to end with a promise to blog more often because every time I do, it takes me months to get another one typed out.  School is still happening and we are doing more than sleeping in and watching movies.

Oh yeah!  I made a new logo for our school and put it on the bottom of the blog. :)

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Summer camp

You know, if you've been around homeschooling for any amount of time at all, the most asked question to a homeschool mom.  "What do you do for socialization?"  Well, since we don't have recess or a lunch room where schools have free time socialization, we have to do what other kids do for further socialization.  Extracurricular activities!  I'm glad for no lunchroom or recess because, well, those are the places I hated as a child!  I went clear through school in public school and I still get a sunken feeling about those place.  I was punched in the face by a boy at recess while most of the school kids looked on.  I spent many lunch hours with a tray of food looking for someone as lonely looking as I felt to sit by or hoping someone would choose to sit with me.  That was probably the worst part of school for me!  Anyway, what was I talking about?  Socialization!
My son has always been a social butterfly.  He easily meets friends.  We go to the park, boom, leave with 3 new friends.  Daughter, not so much.  Ok I can't attribute this to homeschooling because when she was born until nearly age 5 I worked full-time as well as served as a leader in my church.  I began my life as a stay at home mom just over 4 years ago.  My kids went to daycare and private school until 2 1/2 years ago.  They are 9 and 11 now.  My girl didn't come home telling me the names of the other kids like her older brother had, she was timid.  She hid her face when an adult spoke to her ... Still does sometimes.  When she went to kindergarten, she was more focused on goofing off to get people to laugh at her.  She came home at one point saying that a child at school was mean.  I brushed it off and told her that maybe she misunderstood, but she insisted.  A few weeks later I had lunch with her and that child was saying very mean things to my daughter.  We prayed for the child and later they became good friends.  It's hard when people say mean things to your child!
I had a conversation with my girl a few months back about someone hurting my feelings with words.  I asked if anyone did that to her.  She told me a story that made me cry.  I am now realizing that it was a situation that I watched play out, but thought she didn't notice because she seems so care free about so many things.  Wherever they are schooled, in social settings, there is a chance for bullying, rejection and hurtful words.  Thankfully, after gatherings with our homeschool group, she comes home recharged.  When my kids are hurting, I hurt too, when they're happy, I am overjoyed!
So tomorrow, she will go to summer camp.  I was her counselor last year and she was really clingy to me.  She didn't try hard to make friends and was a bit whiney.  I opted not to go this year because I felt she needed a break from Mommy and Mommy from her.  I want her to experience camp.  She was really anxious when I told her I wasn't going.  She was to the point of not wanting to go, but finally asked me to find her jobs to raise money for camp.  I got to sigh relief.  She is fully funded and is packed and ready to go.
Who's getting anxious now?  This Mom!  The situation from before that I thought she didn't notice is upon us again in a little different format, but it I am afraid to bring it up in case she really didn't notice!  I could make it a thing when it may not need to be.  Pray, pray, pray!  Big brother will be at camp as well as trusted adults from my church.  It's hard to know when to step in!  It was conflict like this that helped shape me into who I am today, but makes me often suspicious unnecessarily as well.  Sooooo, yes, she is going!  Yes, I will pray for her tender heart and mind.  I know one day I will need to let her go out on her own into this big dark world, but that day is not today.  Lord, give me wisdom to guide her and let our conversations prepare her for what may come!  May her heart pursue You more than any other thing at camp!