Tuesday, August 26, 2014

R is for... Roll With It

Homeschool Coffee Break | Roll With it!
Sometimes the expectations of homeschooling just don't line up with the reality. Even now, after having sixteen years of experience in real world homeschooling, I think I know how it's going to be and then that's not how it is. Because that's how life works. We dream and plan and try to follow through, but things don't always go as planned. Stuff will happen that wasn't on the original game plan, but I think we can save ourselves a lot of stress if we just roll with it as best we can.
Despite my best intentions to block out the school day hours and focus, there are appointments, errands, a to-do list, and emergencies big and small that make it difficult. Sometimes all we can do is "Roll with it" and make it work. This tends to come pretty easily to me - I guess it's just part of my personality - so I need to remember that it's not necessarily easy for everyone else, even my own family!
The day we were going to be especially productive might be the day the power goes out.
 Or someone gets sick. 
The day we had places we needed to be will probably might be the day a vehicle breaks down.
missing promotion night because we had a vehicle fail!
The goat might eat someone's homework. (True story!)
The pump might fail so the laundry area is flooded.
I might forget about something on the calendar, and then have to scramble at the last minute to get it looked after.
Somebody's work schedule might get changed so our plans need to be adjusted.
And just on an every day basis, stuff happens. There are phone calls I need to take - or phone calls I'm foolish enough to take (I need to stop answering calls from numbers I don't recognize. We have voice-mail, after all!) - there are household chores that need looking after, and there are things that crop up or take far longer than I'd planned for.
I am trying to find the balance here. I've got a lesson plan and I believe we should be able to get through a certain number of chapters in a set period of time. I think my expectation there is reasonable, so I need to be willing to push a reluctant student and discipline myself and my kids to get the work done. I assign essays or projects with a due date, and I need to be willing to give a consequence if the assignments aren't done as expected. But I also need to be willing to extend a due date reasonably if the delay was completely out of my kid's control. I want to have high standards, and we want to strive to be our best and to aim high; but it's not the end of the world if we get a bit behind schedule or don't get everything perfect.
Like I said, this is real life. All those kinds of things are going to happen throughout our lives, so maybe the wise approach is to learn how to handle the curveballs and teach our kids that valuable skill as well. Homeschooling can't be neatly compartmentalized so that it won't ever be influenced by life happening around it. Life happens every day, and homeschooling is a big part of how we do life. So we make our lesson plans, and set our routines and schedules, and even give firm due dates for assignments - but we allow grace to ourselves and others when we get off-track, when things don't go as planned, and when we mess up. (I just read a great blog post a couple days ago about giving grace to be real: Where is the Grace to be Imperfect? at Tom1st.com.)
As long as the coffee-maker works, we can face anything. ;-)
Seriously, as long as we are trusting God, I believe we can face each day's challenges knowing that HE is still in control, and that HIS promises never fail.
But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
~Lamentations 3:21-23~

He said to them, "When you pray, say:
'Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation.'"
~Luke 11:2-4~

My related posts: Keeping It Real
If We're Homeschoolers, Why Aren't We At Home?
5 Ordinary Homeschool Days series
This post is linked at Blogging through the Alphabet, hosted by Ben And Me.
Ben and Me
How do you handle homeschooling when "life happens"? Leave a comment and let me know! Be sure to visit the Schoolhouse Review Crew blog (this link will be live on Wednesday, August 27th) to see other Crew members' thoughts on this topic. You can also visit the Schoolhouse Review Crew blog homepage to see lots of product reviews, and past blog cruise topics.
Homeschooling When Life Happens
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This post was added to the Throwback Thursday Blog-Style link-up hosted by Tots and Me... Growing Up Together! on August 24, 2017.


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