First Time Homeschooling? Here is a Little Advice from a Veteran.


I’ve had a few people message me asking for some homeschool advice. I’ve been homeschooling since 1998. I have 4 adult homeschool graduates and 3 still learning from home. Here are a few things that I think might help out a new homeschooling parent.

1. School can be done anywhere and at anytime. You don’t have to get up and be dressed for school by 8:00am. The point of school is that your child is learning. One of my kids liked to do their school after dinner, and have more free time during the day. She learned best at that time, and was an all round more happy kid.
2. If it’s a bad day or one of you has a bad attitude, postpone school for a different time that day. Tell yourself or your kid.. we’re going to re-visit this after dinner or after you’ve taken a nap.
3. I try to push each one of my kids to get their school done first, then they can play games, build legos, whatever is their thing.
4. I schedule their school so that Friday is a fun day or light day.

#4, 5 and 6

5. One big shock to me, was that homeschool does not take 8 hours. Have some fun activities that they can learn that will substitute for book time. (free reading, crafts, art, gardening, home ec, woodworking, have an 80’s music lesson, visit an online art gallery, practice good pet ownership, meal planning, bird watching, take a walk somewhere new)
6. Take this time to show your child how to grow up and what it means to be an adult. Teach them how to cook, start a garden, do laundry, clean the bathroom, balance a checkbook, needlepoint, or change a tire. So many people do not know basic life skills.
7. Don’t try to teach or grade when you are angry. Give everyone a break.. or have them do an yoga or exercise video with you. My oldest daughter and I still talk about some of the exercise videos we did.
8. I’ve always worked from home. I involved my children in my work and I feel like that taught them life skills and a good work ethic.
9. I have some really good friends that I homeschooled with. Find yourself a group on social media, text your neighbors. We are all in this together. I would not have made it without my friends.

Schooling your children is serious business, but don’t let that scare you. You’ve been blessed with this time to really get to know your kid, to teach them what it means to be a student and a good human. It was an accident that I became a homeschool mom, but I would not have traded this time for anything. #homeschool #homeschoolmom

#6, 3.5, 2, 3,  5 and 4

#4, 3.5,  3, 6 and 5

We Voted!


Uh.. you like my backwards photo..

This year we had 6 voters and 2 first time voters.  The Man and #2 were out of town last week, so they voted early.  I piled the children and voters in the car and headed to our local one room school house.


There is #5 (nv), #3 (v), #1(pv) #3.5 (v), #6 (nv) and #4 (nv)

NV= non voter  V= Voter  PV= Professional Voter

It was #3 and #3.5’s first time to vote.




Casting their vote.

I ARC’D my Well Planned Day Homeschool Planner

That sounds like I committed a crime.


Maybe I did… but I hope not.  I’ve been using the Well Planned Day Homeschool planner for years. I really love it. I had one problem with it, which doesn’t have anything to do with this planner.  Because it is what it is… a homeschool planner.  My problem is that I would keep things in my homeschool planner that didn’t need to be in it.  You know like miscellaneous papers from meeting I had at church, or notes I would jot dot that had nothing to do with school or my children.

I have always carried around a Franklin planner that I loved in the “compact” size, but after Franklin Covey closed their store in Kansas City… my love for them kinda just faded.  I’ve been planner-less for a few years now.  Well except for my Well Planned Day.

I did quite a bit of research on planners, and could not find anything that would plan my day as a homeschooler/eBay Queen/mother of 7/ Youth leader/ squander of time kind of person.  So I started following some planner obsessed people on Instagram and Pinterest.  There are some people that are so in love with planning and being crafty.. that they make Martha Stewart look like an amateur.

After doing my research I decided I needed a planner that was an A4 (Kikki or Filofax), Monarch (Franklin) or you know 8.5 x 11.  Because that’s what my Well Planned Day size is.  In my search for the perfect planner/binder I came across the ARC planner.

The ARC system is sold at Staples, and freaked me out a bit because it was not a 3 ring binder type system.  It’s a disc binder system.  The biggest draw back to me was that I had to buy a 46.00 hole punch.. and it only punches 8 pages at a time.

wpid-20151001_173410.jpgMy ARC

I purchased this purple leather binder and the lime green discs at staples.  The binder was only 34.99, and if you’ve ever purchase a Franklin leather binder you know how much they cost!  The discs come in different sizes, and colors.


To make this work, I gently tear a page off of the Well Planned Day spiral binder, and then cut off the excess spiral so that the page is straight.

wpid-20151001_173501.jpgThis is what the punched edge looks like on a regular piece of paper.

I hole punch them, and put them in the binder.


I normally do a month at a time for my homeschool planner.

DSC08205I really like that I can put all of my extra papers in here too!

DSC08206Normally these pages go in a three ring binder that I NEVER have with me when I need it. (We do a lot of school in unconventional places)

DSC08204I purchased the divider tabs at Staples, but you can “punch” cute file folders like they have a Target Dollar Spot. (see that green and gray striped thing? That’s a new divider tab I’m putting in).  I love that I now have my schedule, homeschool planner, extra pages, church and W.O.W stuff all in one spot.

First Day of School on a Holiday What kind of Teacher is she?

wpid-wp-1441639733553.jpegSo here they are.. Junior, seventh grader, Junior, 5th grader and not quite a kindergartner.

I’m not sure why I started school on Labor Day.. but it seemed like a good idea, if only because  The Man would be home.. just in case there was a riot.

wpid-wp-1441639722573.jpegThe Man.. The Principal and his students.

wpid-wp-1441639850264.jpgMy Arc planner.. with my Well Planned Day sheets.

I decided this year I wasn’t going to carry around a planner, my homeschool (Well Planned Day) planner and a notebook.  I am working on creating my own planner so that I only have one book to lug around with for homeschool, church meetings and my own personal organization.

Here’s a look a some first days of school in the past..