Trusting My Teen with the Car

The Test

Last Friday I traded places with a stranger. I stepped out of the passenger seat, and the DMV evaluator climbed in.

From the front of the building, I watched my son easily maneuver Dad’s car around the parking lot in forward and reverse, breeze in and out of the parallel parking spot, and effortlessly back into a traditional parking spot. When he drove out of the parking lot for the road portion of his driving test, I stepped into the building to await his return. He appeared to do a great job on the test course, but what would the official score say? Would he make a mistake on the road that would prevent him from getting his license today?

Read More

Why I'm Encouraging My Homeschool Grad to Leave the Country

In six short weeks, my oldest daughter may be traveling to Taiwan for three months and then to another country for two additional months. Though we will certainly miss her, my husband and I are both encouraging her to go. It has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with our desire for God’s best in her life.

We have mentioned the option to our daughter several times since she graduated a year and a half ago - DTS (Discipleship Training School) with YWAM (Youth With a Mission). The program for high school graduates includes three months of discipleship training followed by two to three months of outreach in a foreign country. She could attend a DTS anywhere in the world. She has chosen Taiwan.

Read More

Tracking High School Independent Study Hours for Elective Credit

Does your high school student spend hours drawing, taking pictures, caring for young children, or writing computer programs? Does she enjoy reading about a particular topic or participating in an interesting activity? Does he need to log hours of exercise to satisfy a P.E. credit or certain number of driving hours before he gets his license?

Using Airtable, I created a chart that can help you stay organized.

Read More

Eighth Grade in One Semester?

I could not believe my ears! Last spring 13-year-old informed me she wanted to complete two grades of school this year. This is the same girl I frequently had to threaten with consequences or force to complete her work… the one who only did the bare minimum—less than that if she thought she could get away with it. If there was a shortcut, she could certainly find it!

Surely she did not know what she was getting herself into, did she? Was she mature enough to take on such a challenge? Would she be able to resist the temptation to take every possible shortcut? Should I let her attempt this unthinkable task?

Read More

Leveraging the Power of Internships, Part 3

By the time I was 18, I already had years of experience working at my family’s business. I never needed to go look for a job because I already had several: cleaning rooms in my parents’ motel, pumping gas at their Mobil station, stocking shelves or ringing the cash register in the country store, and waiting tables in the restaurant.

Fast-forward 26 years…. As a homeschool mom, the idea of internships for my kids never occurred to until after my oldest had already graduated. Was it too late for her to benefit from an internship?

Read More

SchoolhouseTeachers Review

How can I afford to homeschool a houseful of kids? One of my secrets is a Yearly Membership to SchoolhouseTeachers.com. For an annual fee, I have access to resources that help with specific stages and issues in homeschooling, complete courses for every level I teach, recordkeeping software, an online library, engaging video content, and more.

In November, I wrote a blog post introducing SchoolhouseTeachers.com. As part of the 2018 Schoolhouse Review Crew, I was asked to write an additional review. As I peered at the site through fresh eyes, I explored sections I had not noticed before.

Read More

Bringing History to Life through Genealogy

My mom is the keeper of our family tree. When she is not chasing after grandchildren or cooking an amazing meal in the kitchen, I often find her hunched over her laptop uncovering yet another secret of our past.

When we visited my parents over the summer, my 13-year-old daughter started to get excited about genealogy as well. She and I spent hours at my mom’s computer tracing our lineage and learning about ancestors we never knew we had. It was fascinating to discover family members who sailed on the Mayflower, others who rubbed shoulders with founding fathers and presidents, and quite a few who fought for our country in wars we read about in history books.

I took some time during our New Year’s visit this week to interview my mom and daughter about their interest in genealogy.

Read More