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You would think it was winter by the way my oldest daughter was dressed. A turtleneck and long pants. Sitting in the sun selling Kool-Aid because it is  a hot day. She sold a gallon & made over $3. I think only .75 was from me. Now she is all excited about buying more kool-aid, sugar, and cups so she can sell more. I didn’t make her pay for her supplies this time since I had them all on hand. I have no idea why I had kool-aid…probably from a garage sale 2 or 3 years ago. {Please don’t judge me for letting my kids drink something that is pretty much like mainlining sugar.}

I made her change her clothes when we were going out in public.

Summer. I am so excited for summer. I missed out on last summer. I barely remember the blur of last summer. A fact that makes this summer all the sweeter.

I know we have mild winters here in the Willamette Valley of the Pacific Northwest, but I have never been so cold for so long. I will never ever complain about the heat or the mugginess ever ever again! Even on the one or two nights it is too hot to sleep, I will count it as a blessing.

My summer plans are great! I keep adding so many wonderful ideas to the list. Things like: declutter and organize the entire house, go on hikes with the help of my handy Oregon Hiking Guide, do the summer reading program at the library, go to the beach, go tangleboxing, continue on with the reading, writing, and arithmetic, and getting ready for the coming school year.

I have made the decision to not continue homeschooling my children. I know. It’s pretty much the unthinkable in certain homeschool groups. I know that some reading this may raise an eyebrow or two, but really, I don’t know how I can continue to do what I’m doing. I’m a single mom now. I have no veritable job skills. [I’m not sure what veritable means or if it even applies to what I’m talking about, but it popped into my head and I liked the sound of it.] I need to work. I need to get educated so I can make more than minimum wage. I will be going to Chemeketa Community College to pursue nursing, the same thing I’ve wanted to do since 1993.

Part of me thinks that by doing this that I’m not trusting the Lord to provide. A large part of me thinks that I’m a failure for not persevering in this homeschool journey. Am I throwing my children to the governmental beasts? I’ve been to enough homeschool conferences and read enough homeschool blogs to know what others are thinking. But you know what? I’ve met some incredible people who were public schooled. I have felt emotionally drained and overwhelmed in such a way that I wonder if there is more to give. This has been a tough year. I am stronger, but tired. I know that by saying I need a break from my kids is akin to saying I want to send them to boarding school. I didn’t base this decision based on what is best for me, but rather what is best for my children and for us as a family. One friend pointed out that if I kept my kids home due to my fear of what my friends will think, then I am being selfish. Needless to say, I will be selling some homeschool stuff. Not all of it, but a good portion of it. It will be sad for me to give up part of who I am. This isn’t the plan I had for myself, but I do need to get us out of debt and do what I can to ensure that I can refinance the house at some point.

So, I feel like this is the summer for change. The last summer of my life as I know it. Well, maybe last year was the summer that was the end of my life as I knew it.

I need to figure out where to begin my summer planning. There are berries to pick, fruit to pick, food to can and freeze, beaches to be loved by us, and trails to be explored, there is also laundry to be done, shelves to be organized, and clothes to be mended. There are countless creative projects waiting my attention. I have all these artistic sort of things I want to do, but neither the time or skill to do them.

Onto the new adventures of the Taylor Tribe.

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