Scenes from our first day of homeschool today. I can’t believe this is our 9th year of learning at home! It was a decision we initially felt forced to make. Taryn’s school and teacher kept exposing her to foods she is allergic to. She was constantly sick as a result. She had a 504 everyone ignored and we were told by the principal it’d be easier for them if homeschooled her. You can imagine that comment (and many others) didn’t go over real well. We had an advocate and fought. In the end, we could put our energy in to advocating, year after year, and still deal with constant allergic reactions, or we could put our energy in to educating our daughter and keeping her healthy. At the time we brought her home we had a teenager in public school plus a toddler in private school. We were all over the place. Eventually Jude asked to come home, then to our shock so do our oldest. And as much as the decision to homeschool terrified us in the beginning, it has been the biggest blessing in our family. We’ve done numerous programs, college lead, co-ops, hands on, online, parent taught, teacher taught virtual, unschooling, road schooling, etc. We’ve done fun theme weeks and we’ve done months of absolutely nothing because that’s what life threw us (trauma and covid come to mind). I had so many people message during quarantine, friends thrown in to suddenly learning from home, asking how do we do this. My answer wasn’t helpful, during quarantine, we stopped. We didn’t learn at all with any structure. It was a totally unrealistic expectation for anyone to take that on. Staying in all the time, that’s not what homeschoolers usually do, it was hard on the most seasoned of home learners. So, we just didn’t. And my kids are fine. We caught up eventually this past year and they are right where they should be. We don’t spend 8 hours a day doing school, it just doesn’t work for us. We are 2-3 hours max, 4 days a week, March-October. That’s changed through the years too. We’ve definitely learned to be flexible, we let our kids guide us toward their interests and I’ll share the best advice I ever received when we started: let them get bored, that’s where the magic happens. ❤️