family life / homeschooling

terabithia: what most homeschoolers eventually do

Seems to me homeschool moms turn to one or all of the following EVENTUALLY during their home educating career:

  1. Have more babies than they thought they originally would.
  2. Burn out.
  3. Move to an acreage.
  4. Unschool if they thought they would never unschool.
  5. Traditionally homeschool if they thought they would unschool.
  6. Expect to do it perfectly the first child around.
  7. Expect a whole lot less by the third child.
  8. Generally expect nothing from the fourth child and hereafter.
  9. Test if they thought they didn’t need to test.
  10. Not test if they’ve been doing a lot of testing.
  11. Buy organic, home birth, start a grow-op (I mean greenhouse;) and vitaminize instead of vaccinate.

Okay, so I’m not going to reveal which I’m in agreement with or not. But I will declare that I introduce my children’s name from H-Z, and my kids know the punchline—“our kids are alphabetical, and Z is at the end”.

Yes, you can giggle and suggest that double Zs are still available…if I want to be homeschool original…but I think I’ve done a bang up job helping to populate the world. Though I know having four kiddos is only an entry-level homeschooling prerequisite, I’ll find a way to stick with four…God willing, knock on wood, pray, fast, fast, pray…

We aren’t off-grid, but our local grocer is called a ‘superette’…which means I can buy one, possibly two types of dog food, four litres of milk are available Wednesdays and Saturdays, and a teeny tiny postal outlet is available at the back of the store. There’s also a liquor store on the side if I get bored of country living.

I hang my laundry to dry. The kids bake bread in the morning (I won’t tell them that you can buy that at the superette). There’s a 10×12 bakery/café at the ferry landing and even a tiny clothing store—hemp, organic earthen wear anyone?

Tis a wee bit different experience than our downtown urban heritage home. We still live in a heritage home, but it’s no longer charmed by ten foot coiffured ceilings, wraparound verandah, and hardwood floors.

Rather, we live with 1970s vinyl flooring and enough paneling to build a Starsky and Hutch production set. We do have a good ole sized garden though, with a tumbling ten foot high chicken wired fence and a greenhouse for my, er, um, plants (ha ha, hippie town, yes, but I just have a few herbs and tomatoes).

There might be a reason why we homeschoolers drift out of the urban markers…

There are wasps in the bathroom, deer in the meadow flashing their whitetails, neighbour’s dogs to befriend, and a slower life. Apparently we’re told we don’t have to lock our doors, except from maybe the bears, and wandering the creek replaces screen time.

We have ten acres to roam, mountains to admire, and the “Bridge to Terabithia” in our backyard. Okay, it was so named by our girls, who discovered a substantial mountain stream and fallen spruce trees to teeter across. Rainboots and evening baths required.

Apparently the word Terabithia refers to a magical land. Indeed. I think the girls named this place well… I like to tear the words apart and analyze: Terra means ‘earth’; bithia, a variant of Bethia, means ‘daughter of God’. So, I’d like to think of this place as the earth, which is the daughter of God, or something magical like that.

Tis not a life to perfect or plan here on the mountain range, but a magical life to live in Terabithia.

 

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