Why I Am Thankful for Being a Homeschooling Mom





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Here at BJ's Homeschool, I usually share about our homeschooling activities, academics and the like.  

But today, I'd like to share something different....I want to focus on why I am thankful for being a homeschool mom.

And I am so thankful for that!  With my daughter now a senior in college, I can see all the benefits that homeschooling has brought to her and to our family, much more clearly than I could when we were in the thick of things!

It has given us so much, including

- helping with sensory issues
- building a love of nature
- building strong family relationships
- developing life long interests
- learning that it is ok to make mistakes
- preparing her well for college
  
There are so many reasons why I am thankful for having homeschooled for 15 years.  

And in honor of Thanksgiving, I have also gathered up some of my family's favorite photos from our nature road trips....

Are you a nature-oriented family, too?

For Thanksgiving last year, my husband and I got together with our daughter and her friend, and enjoyed a wonderful meal together. (Our extended family is a continent away..)




We did an ethnic celebration this year.  You see, my daughter's favorite food is east indian food. Every week, when we could afford it, I would take my daughter to our local indian restaurant for lunch.  

HOMESCHOOLING HELPED WITH SENSORY NEEDS

When she was little, my daughter who has some sensory issues, was a very, very picky eater.  All she wanted to eat was soft foods, like macaroni and cheese, every day.  But she learned to like rice.  So I often took her to our little east indian restaurant, where she enjoyed her rice, and gradually added in other foods, too, like chicken curry.  

You see, it was also a soft food. This helped her to expand her food choices so well, that it became one of our favorite homeschool traditions!



I am thankful that I could build in activities during our homeschool day, that met these individual needs, with food, and everything else. 

And the fact that my daughter was a picky eater, ended up adding a lot of  variety of foods for our family.  Above, is one of my daughter's new favorites, tandori chicken.  


And what does she want to do in the fall...but go on a "field trip" to pick out a pumpkin...at the same place we used to go to for our fall homeschool field trip.....


HOMESCHOOLING BUILT A LOVE OF NATURE

Nature Road Trips - I love how homeschooling gave us ample time to explore my daughter's interests, and to pass on our love of nature...

We gave my daughter a camera, when she was 8....



....and she's been taking pictures ever since.  I loved teaching her about this favorite hobby of mine, through the years.  It even became a high school elective.


My husband is always snapping pictures of the mountain, Mount Rainier....




HOMESCHOOLING BUILT STRONG RELATIONSHIPS

I also love that my husband was a part of our daughter's education, from the start.  She still seeks him out for his wise counsel, as she decides on possible life tracks, and future possibilities.

Driving practice became a special time for talks with my teen.  And somehow doing short nature drives helped my daughter to feel comfortable to share her heart with me.

HOMESCHOOLING BUILT LIFE LONG INTERESTS

I love taking pictures of the trees.....tall and serene....and I passed my love of photography onto my daughter.  It is still a passion of hers...



She loves taking photos of the glorious colors in the fall....


I am thankful that my daughter still wants to do these nature photo trips with us...to the city and...


..............out to rivers and streams....


...stopping to watch the salmon come back to spawn........


I am so grateful that this love of nature has stuck with her.... It's in her heart.


IT ALSO TAUGHT HER IT IS OK TO MAKE MISTAKES

Homeschooling taught my daughter, not only to love learning, but to know that she could make mistakes, too..........

She tends to be a perfectionist, like her mom.  And as a 2e kid, she hated it when she made any mistakes.

For years we avoided doing any quizes or tests, to focus on the joy of learning itself. 

She learned that it was not about avoiding making mistakes.  But that learning was a joy in itself.  And that we all make mistakes along the way.  

And that making mistakes was a part of learning.

HOMESCHOOLING PREPARED HER WELL FOR COLLEGE

Homeschooling taught our daughter good study skills and gave her practice in organizing her own study schedule.  And it taught her to love learning, so when she got to college, she was already a motivated student. 


With our daughter a senior now in college, my hubby and I are seeing the values of our journey....

And how it has built family relationships, that have continued to be strong through the college years.

When our daughter encountered difficulties as a young adult in college, she knew she could turn to us for anything, and that we would be there for her, no matter what.  

And we have together found wondrous surprises along the way....



My hubby and I are thankful for the joys that we have watching her explore her interests in college and find her way there.

One of those joys was watching her intern as a campaign manager for a city council person, as part of her Political Science studies.



She wants to run for office herself or work in the government in some way.  Can't wait to see where that will take her! 

Looking back...

The homeschooling road is not an easy one.  

There are twists and turns along the way.  Sometimes, very hard ones....

All the hard work of finding the resources and strategies that fit, then changing them again, when they don't....correcting math work, finding a rhythm for our days,  dealing with the annual testing required in our state, and all those rainy afternoons...

Finding the personal time to take care of yourself, so you can give to your kids.

It all has a cost.  

But the homeschooling journey builds so much more than just an education.  

It builds family.  

And isn't homeschooling the best way to build a kiddo as well!  

And the memories that we built through her homeschool activities, those high school activities, and the lifetime friends that we have made, through the years...are ones that we treasure.



The road ever beckons.....


Whatever my daughter encounters in her life as an adult, she knows that she has a strong foundation to lean on.  And she knows who she can come to when she needs to...

That is priceless.

May you find joy in your homeschool journey....One day at a time, sometimes one moment at a time...


It is all worth it!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and your precious families, too.   What makes you thankful this year?  

Here's mine...

I am so thankful for my readers, you make me a better writer!  And for my hubby, daughter, and her new boyfriend, who is a very kind young man. 


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Thanks for stopping by BJ's Homeschool,

Betsy


Betsy is mom to her now college senior, whom she homeschooled from preK through high school.  She blogs at BJ's Homeschool, about the early yearshigh school & college and wrote - Homeschooling High School with College in Mind.   She offers free homeschool help through messages at BJ's Consulting


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14 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing all of these lovely pictures. I want to homeschool my kids when they get older and this post was an encouragement!

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  2. I am so glad to hear that, +Healing Mama, and thanks for stopping by! We have so enjoyed taking these photos together, as a family. Have a good week, with your kiddos,

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  3. Great photos. I am grateful to be a homeschool mom for 29 years now. Thanks for the encouraging post.

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    1. Thanks, +HeartofWisdom, for sharing your nice comments! Wow, 29 years....so I am just a newbie!! lol Enjoy your kids and have a blessed week!

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  4. love the photos that you shared what a beautiful place. Your reasons are worthy as well and so very inspiring and encouraging

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  5. Thank you, Angie Church, for your kind comments! I hope that I am an encouragement to homeschooling families, who are in the midst of the busy, craziness, and loveliness of the homeschooling years. Have a wonderful day with your kiddos!

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  6. I love the picture of the tall trees, and the one under the tree. And I agree, there are so many good reasons to choose homeschooling.

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  7. Those are my favorite pictures, too Melanie Thomas. I just love trees..... We have planted many on our property. So nice of you to stop by and take the time to comment! Have a good Wednesday!

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  8. The nature photos are beautiful! It's important to take time to be thankful - a lot of us don't do it enough! Thanks for sharing at the Thoughtful Spot!

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    1. Happy to share at the Thoughtful Spot, Emma! It is always full of great ideas for kids. Thanks for stopping by,

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  9. Those pictures are beautiful! What a fun thing to instill in your child a love of nature and appreciation.

    Thanks for linking up at Bloggers Spotlight Link and Pin-It Party! Your post was pinned to our group board.

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    1. I will be heading over the the Bloggers Spotlight and Pin-It Party again this week, Hil D! Thanks so much for pinning my post to your group board. Wishing you a great week,

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  10. So encouraging and heart warming. Thank you for sharing.

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  11. Thank you, Mother of 3, that is so nice to hear. Wishing your joy in your week,

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