Hospitality, Friendship, Encouragement

Friday, April 1, 2016

Nearing The Finish Line

18 days. That's all we have left of our school year.  We will finish on April 27th, have our evaluations and testing on May 6th, and Rachel graduates May 13th.

Time marches on, doesn't it?  I have been homeschooling for 21 years.  It has been a huge part of my life, in fact it has gone hand in hand with my parenting.  In the early years, I had school age kids and toddlers and babies.

Now, I have another one graduating, another one starting ninth grade, and my last one will be in sixth grade.  I'll only have two students next year.

I do history and science with them daily, then they do their other work independently.  I'm here to advise, help, tutor.  This works really well, and has all through our years of schooling.  Our goal has been to give them the skills to learn, and to give them a love of learning.

When I still had little ones in the home, I was busy!  I needed that time the older kids were working independently to focus on the littles and to cook, fold laundry.  I ran older kids to their part time jobs and activities, and the little ones rode along.

Now, Rachel drives herself to work, Sarah and Kyle often choose to stay home rather than shop with me.  I can go out all by myself!  Its awesome and a little weird.

I have time to read, to blog, to work on creative projects.

I've been bored lately.  Seriously.

I realized the reason just yesterday.  I am in a completely new phase of my life.  I am not an empty nester yet, nor are we done with homeschool, but I am needed in those areas less and less.  Our goal of raising adults, is nearing its finish line.    I'm beginning to look around for things to do.

I know that I am still needed with my kids still in the home, I don't mean to communicate that I am not.  And I love spending time with my married kids too, and my parents.  We have a lot of good times together.  

What I am saying is that I am beginning to ask the Lord what He has for me to do in this next phase of life.  

These years of parenting go by so quickly, and then Boom! You're  done!  Of course, it doesn't feel like it when you have 3 kids, ages 5 and under, and then have three more that are spaced out by 3 years in between each one. I have been a mother for 27 years, and my active mothering will be 7 more years until Kyle is 18 years old.

I will ALWAYS be their mother, but I won't always be parenting them.  There is a difference!  Its a good difference, too, because God doesn't intend for us to be kids our whole lives.  We become adults and we go out and serve Him where He plants us.

It's all good stuff.  I'm looking forward to what the Lord might have for me going forward.  There are all sorts of possibilities!  Its exciting!

What did you all do when you got to this place in life?  Tell me about it in the comments, I'd love to hear all about it!


  1. Teaching Textbooks! I love that curriculum.

    My guys are old enough to do some of their schoolwork on their own. They need me to help and look over things, but they can sit down with a workbook and complete a lesson. Time flies. I was just looking at a photo of my oldest when he was 4-5, standing in the waves at the beach with his arms outstretched. It seems like yesterday, but it was many yesterdays ago.

    Curious...what science curriculum do you use? I'd like to do more experiments.

    1. We've loved Teaching Textbooks, too! For science I use Apologia. I use the Exploring Creation series by Jeannie Fulbright (love!) and have used the General Science and Biology. LIke everything we do, we don't always do all the experiments.

      Thanks for your comment!

  2. I can relate to some extent. My kids are moving into the independent stage and I have a 16 year old that is VERY independent. I can vouch for that weird but awesome feeling when you can go out to the grocery store by myself. My oldest can babysit. *Smiles* It is a new phase for sure.

  3. I can completely relate! I am homeschooling my 3 younger boys now, almost 10 (twins) and almost 13. The other 3 at home are young adults and busy doing their own thing. And the other 3 are married, or out living on their own! I find it strange because I am busier taking care of the home - there's still a lot of chores and cooking and baking, but the bulk of that is falling more on just me. I miss the comradery of everyone in the kitchen working together! I am needed less, but I still am home because there's no one to babysit anymore, and the younger ones aren't quite able to be left for long yet.

  4. I'm not sure you'll like my story, but it brings home the lesson that God's plans are sometimes not one we'd choose for ourselves. I had 1-1/2 years of homeschooling left when my husband took ill. With five short days he went from thinking it was a stomach virus to learning he had an incurable cancer and his kidneys had failed. I spent the next eight years caring for him until his death two years ago. They were very difficult years, but I saw God do amazing things as He showed his faithfulness time and time again. Now I'm a widow, and am still trying to figure out what God want me to do. One of those things is help care for my first grandchild when her mom returns to work in another month. Beyond that, who knows? I know I can trust God for whatever He brings!

  5. Bored? I'm rarely bored but pretty much always up for time with a friend. Try me next time boredom strikes. We need to reschedule our lunch.
    You know what I've been up to since my kiddos grew up. Candles, Volunteering to teach other's kids and supporting our grown kids when they need or want it. I am also loving more time with Warren. It makes me so happy to hang out with him as often as we do. Life is full and well I remember the feelings you describe, though. That stage doesn't last long. Something will find you.....

    1. I think I am just so used to be super busy, that normal busy feels slow. I'm often just sitting here. I am exploring furniture painting, and other creative outlets. I need to be creative or I go crazy.

  6. Because my husband is one of the Pastor's at our church, I feel a supportive role in our church is where I am needed. I volunteer a lot of my time with child care for all of the various "M.O.P.S." programs, Bible Studies, etc. Since I'm a Grandmother also (our kids live in Florida) I like to know that I'm helping out the younger moms know that we are there for them. I also help teach/lead craft projects that are of a useful service to someone.


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  Here is what our cottage looked like last year in late autumn. This year we have only two sections of picket fencing up, and the ramp from...