Wednesday, September 5, 2018

2018-2019 Homeschool Year

We started back on August 13; however, I am just now finding the time to write about our curriculum and schedule for this year. It has been that hectic. With one senior and one sophomore, the workload is heavier -for them and for me- and also increasingly challenging. To add a little more stress  excitement, my senior is also working part-time. Plus, I still have my writing, which sometimes means early mornings and late nights to ensure that I meet deadlines. On a side note, look for exciting news about my writing coming soon. For now, though, let's continue with the homeschool discussion. We typically school five days a week, Monday through Friday, although we've already had to do some school on a couple of Saturdays in order to make up for missing some school time due to issues that arose during the week. Since I have high schoolers, most of their work is done independently. I check over it, and then we go over any corrections that need to be made. Some subjects, such as Literature, History, and the Sciences, are interactive in our home. We discuss ideas and themes, events and people, and do labs together. I'm also available to facilitate in other subjects as needed. I believe in teaching students to learn independently, and I've been fostering that type of environment since we started our homeschool journey in 2006.

I use a mix of different curricula. I choose based on the learning style of each child and also what fits my teaching style; it's important that you take both into consideration. Also, one other piece of advice before I share what we're using this year: be prepared. Plan, plan, plan. I spend around two months each summer planning our homeschool year. I block out around one-two hours 3-4 days a week over that time period and research options, buy materials, familiarize myself with the materials, see how many days/weeks it will take to finish each subject, and then loosely plan the year. That works for me. Find your style and then make planning work for you.

*My Senior's Curriculum
Psychology and You
Forensic Science Fundamentals and Investigations
American Government Balancing Democracy and Rights
Fundamentals of Economics
Math-U-See Pre-Cal & Trig
Memoria Press The Iliad & The Odyssey Set
Art Appreciation
Word: The Poet's Voice

*My Sophomore's Curriculum
First Form Greek
Art Appreciation
Word: The Poet's Voice
Math-U-See Geometry Set
History Odyssey Ancients Level 3
Ancient Literature
High School Chemistry in Your Home
Analytical Grammar

*Don't freak out too much at the prices. I didn't buy all of these new. Some I borrowed from friends and many I found on Paperback Swap and Thrift Books.

If you have any questions, please ask. Also, I'd love to hear about the materials that you're using and about how you plan and schedule your homeschool year. Let me hear from you soon!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Be You, Be Beautiful

"But I see your true colors
Shining through
I see your true colors
And that's why I love you
So don't be afraid to let them show
Your true colors
True colors are beautiful
Like a rainbow"
                                                      -Cyndi Lauper

"You've changed." 
Oh, my, how I've heard these words recently! This statement has ranged in meaning from my views to my depression and almost everything in between the two. It's been spoken like it's an accusation. It's been said with irritation. These words have even been spoken as a reason that I'm harder to love or as something that makes it too difficult to keep me as a friend. 

But, you know what? This is who I am. I have depression. I will not apologize for that. It's part of me. My views? Yes, they've evolved. I've become more informed. I don't want to stay the same, anyway. I find that quite undesirable. I do not want to be stagnant. I choose to be a lifelong learner. Plus, in many ways I'm still the same:
kind, loving, compassionate, giving, bookish, feisty, wine-drinking, Netflix-watching, writer. If people would spend some time with me, they would see this; however, it's not my problem if they choose not to do so. I'm content with the people who are currently in my life and with the friends that I believe I will make in the future.

The older I get, the more comfortable I am with me. I love who I am. I want to surround myself with people who also love me for me. I won't simply be "tolerated." I expect to be loved, appreciated, and celebrated. It's taken me a long time to arrive at this place, and I won't allow anyone to take it away from me. It's an especially hard-won battle for someone with depression, but I've earned this victory and have the scars to prove it.

I feel beautiful in my own skin. I will continue to be true to who I am. For the ones who truly love me, I love you, too, and you all are wonderful examples of being real. To everyone, never be afraid to show your true colors. Your real life - and your real friends - are out there waiting!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


I've noticed that there is a disturbing lack of compassion in the world today. One look at Facebook and it's obvious. So many people are not willing to put themselves in others' places and imagine what it might feel like to be in a different place in life. I cannot understand this. In this day and time, there is no excuse for ignorance. Through the internet and global news, it is quite simple for us to be aware of the plight and struggles of others. It's not for lack of information that people are ignorant; it is by choice.

Furthermore, I cannot fathom the hate that spews out of the mouths of some people. Aren't we to love? Aren't we to reach out to other humans, regardless of race, religious or non-religious beliefs, or sexual orientation? So many problems could be solved if people were willing to truly love one another - unconditionally and without judgment. Trust me, it's possible - even rewarding - to love someone who is different from you.

All I know to do is to spread love and compassion everywhere I go. That is what I try to do. I cannot change the whole world in one broad sweep, but I can change my own outlook and give of myself in the best way I know how. That is my goal for this year and for the rest of my life. My hope is that one day soon the rest of the world will join me.

Self-Care That's Not So Fun

As promised in my previous post, I am now going to talk about self-care that's not so much fun. This kind of self-care involves thin...