Tuesday, September 20, 2016

VHC #2 how to deal with negative Comments

Tuesday 20th September, 2016

I had never really thought of comments made about homeschooling as negative. Everyone has an opinion and they have a right to that belief. They don't have a right to try and force that belief onto me. I don't have the right to try and force my belief on them either.

Some of the suggested negative comments have included, "is that legal?" "are you qualified to teach?" "what about socialization?". I don't view these as so much negative, as non-educated people making comments. People like to take the path of least resistance, follow the crowd and just accept what they have been told, rather than look into other options. I will always offer an answer in a polite way and the conversation moves on. Sometimes the answer is a quick "yes" or "no", others are longer and more in depth. Sometimes the topic remains the same and sometimes it is changed all together.

I volunteered on a phone service for our national home education association, that people could ring for help and advice and most were asking these same questions. So these questions are not always a negative attack on your lifestyle choice. Some have just never given it a thought  or even heard of it before.

My biggest hurdle for negative comments actually come from within my own head. Especially when I first started out. 

"What if I am screwing my kids up?"
 "Are they going to miss out on something that I can't offer?"
 "Are they going to resent me for this later on in life?"
 "Would they be better off in the education system with trained professionals?"
 "Who am I to be educating my children?"

 Finding other homeschoolers really helped with this. Chatting to others mums on homeschooling forums and reading blogs all help with changing my self talk. And that is what it takes. I had to catch myself out and change the self talk to the positive. 

"I am offering my children a safe environment to discover who they are with out the pressures that are found in schools."
 "They are getting other opportunities that they would not get if they were in the school system."
 "1 on 1 support is better than being in a classroom of 30 kids" 
"I am their mum and I love them, no one is going to love them more than me and have their best interest at heart." 

So whats my advice? Think positive. Be respectful. Don't take the comments to heart (I know easier said than done).  Be prepared to walk away from those that are just in it for a fight or want to push their own agenda's. You get to choose who you hang out with and who you rub shoulders with in person and on social media. I think our attitude is half the battle. "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger." Proverbs 15:1.


This response  is my part of the Virtual Homeschool Coop Channel Collaboration. You can find out more at  http://virtualhomeschoolcoop.com/ The goal of the Virtual Homeschool Coop is to build the homeschool community of knowledge with collaborations to give voice to all experiences in homeschooling.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

VHC Introduction Time.

 Well this is us.....

 Bec and Miss E.

We have been homeschooling for 8 weeks, this time. I homeschooled all three of my children from Aug 2008 to Feb 2013, when they all went back (in Miss E's case for the first time) to school. Now the eldest is in her first year at Uni, my one and only boy is about to start his final year at the local High School, unless he finds a job, and then there is Miss E.

Miss E is 11 and in grade 5. She has now experienced what mainstream school is like and obviously nothing like what she saw on the "Full House" so has come home. To be fair she has been asking for the last 12 months, but we kept putting it off as I didn't want to be yo-yoing between homeschool and school. So I wanted to make sure she was certain.

I should look into making a mission statement, at the moment it seems like we are just winging our way through, trying to find what works for us. I do want Miss E to rekindle her love of learning and once that takes place it will be fun to see where it takes us.

Our approach is very and I mean VERY eclectic. I am using CLE for maths. Have just started LATL for english. Before we were using another spelling program and doing a lapbook from Hands of a child. The history book has been lost, so now we are visiting local areas and reading and notebooking. Miss E at the moment wants to become a lawyer, so we are looking at how the law system begun in Australia and how it works. So as the mood grabs us and interests grow we will find the resources we need I'm sure. Actually I'm quite sure that when looking at the others that join in with the VHC I shall see something and go "Hey that could be fun" "That's a great idea"

We live on a farm, but don't do the farming. We just rent the view. We are in New South Wales on the east coast of Australia about 1 hour from the Victorian Boarder. How I long to be back in Victoria where their registration is so much simpler. But being in NSW is ok, at least I get some sort of planning done for the registration process. As you can see its very wet at the moment. We have had higher than average rains of late. That water is normally all crop. But I'm enjoying the water frontage at the moment. We are coming into summer soon enough and it will be hot and dry again.

Last time I homeschooled,  blogging was a way of recording what we had done, and no doubt it will form a part of that again. It was also a way of looking into others homes to see what worked and what didn't. I'm grateful that a friend told me about the VHC, as now I wont have to do so many google searches. I can just go and look at all the link ups and hopefully make new friends along the way that understand the joys and trials of homeschooling.

This response  is my part of the Virtual Homeschool Coop Channel Collaboration. You can find out more at  http://virtualhomeschoolcoop.com/ The goal of the Virtual Homeschool Coop is to build the homeschool community of knowledge with collaborations to give voice to all experiences in homeschooling.

VHC Assignment 1 - Structure or Relaxed?

"This response  is my part of the Virtual Homeschool Coop Channel Collaboration. You can find out more at www.virtualhomeschoolcoop.com The goal of the Virtual Homeschool Coop is to build the homeschool community of knowledge with collaborations to give voice to all experiences in homeschooling."

Tuesday 13th September, 2016

 31st January 2013 seems like a life time ago when I laid claim to the nails sealing the homeschooling coffin. I never did get rid of the idea of homeschooling and it has once again been resurrected in our household though only 1 child is home this time.

 Tuesday 19th July 2016 saw me withdrawing Miss E from the local primary school and begin our new journey together. Now I'm breaking my way back into the world of homeschoolers and why not join in the fun of the Virtual Homeschool Coop.

Assignment 1 : How Structured or Relaxed is your homeschool? Rate your amount or lack of structure from “0” being no structure to “10” being high structure and why in 3 categories: curriculum, daily routine, and homeschool space. 

Curriculum = 5  I do have books for maths, english, science and history, but we are just about to change our english curriculum as I wasn't happy with what we were using. I am also thinking of dropping the books for science and history and having a go at doing unit studies or lapbooks for these. We are so eclectic its not funny. But it has to work for your family and we shall jsut keep trying new things until we find our fit.

Daily Routine = 0, could I even give it a negative number? - We have not set start time, no set end time. If fact I work  casually and as such I can get a call at 8 am and be asked into work. Lucky for us my husband works from home from 8:30 to 1 Monday to Friday, so I write a todo list and leave it with Miss E. If she is having problems then she just has to wait until Dad is available to help her, so sometime its schooling in the afternoon. The other day it was schooling after dinner when I had a chance to go through her maths with her. Our routine consists of Maths and English are worked on every day. Everything else happens over the week as the mood takes us.

Homeschool Space = ?  We have a dinning table, that counts right? We have one large room that has hubby's work desk, my work desk, the sewing desk and the dinning room table and lined with book shelves where we have space. I shouldn't forget the couch or the treadmill. It is somewhat organised. We have a space for Miss E books she is currently working on. Its all good.

We have only been back in the game for 8 weeks and it takes a while to find your homeschooling legs. last time it took me nearly 6 months to find a happy groove, if not longer. I'm sure it will happen, there is always tomorrow.............


Thursday, October 8, 2015

And Sew The Fun Begins

8th October, 2015

I don't mind saying I know I'm already behind the eight ball, its not about keeping up, but the journey I go on. Well something like that.

Last week saw the start of the long awaited 1930's Farmers Wife Sampler Quilt Sew Along. Three blocks we were given directions for. 3!!. So while I only have 1 completed, I thought I may as well share what I have done with Gnome Angle's Link up party. With a bit of luck I wont be the only one that is taking my time.

After purchasing the book and reading some of the lovely letters that are in there, I tossed and turned as to how I was going to make my quilt. Should I paper piece? Should I do templates? Should I use the machine or should I hand sew? The answer is wait and see on the day. So far I have decided to hand sew as this allows me to sit in the lounge room with the family. Plus they are starting with the easy blocks so hand sewing is not that bigger drama. So one might assume I am doing templates, but that would be wrong. As its squares and half triangles to begin with I'm just using my good old rotary cutter and rulers, after I sit and work out the measurements that I need on the diagram that comes on the cd with the book. Lucky for me being a 6 1/2 Inch block the diagrams are life size, provided you print actual size and not scaled.

Print out from CD that comes with book with my scribbles
Drawing on my sewing lines after cutting shape required
Keeping it all together in plastic sleeve until I get around to sewing

Storing all my cut out blocks in my yellow folder.

Finding the time to work out measurements, cut, mark and sew. I know there are long term quilters out there sighing at my long way of doing things, but hey its how I work. Hopefully I will find more time to sit and sew this coming week. But I do have one block to show off and that is #12 Becky.  Its back in its plastic sleeve and will go into a leaver arch folder and wait very patiently for me to finish the remaining 98 blocks.

 What a good named block to start with. Until next time.........


Monday, September 7, 2015

All Sewn Up Or Is It?????

Monday 7th September 2105,

Last year saw me take on the new hobby of patchwork. So here is my major project that I ended up showing at the Henty Art, Quilting and Photography Exhibition.

 This was all my own design and sewing. The quilting I did get done by Pandora Quilting in Wodonga. She does an awesome job in there and I certainly wasn't about to try and make my first quilting attempt at a king size quilt. I dont think my little Elna would have survived.

And now it has rightful place on my bed, well not at the moment as I had to pull out my big winter doonah. But it will find its way once back once the nights warm up.

The next question was what to do next. This year I have managed to pick up casual work and between that and other family commitments I have not joined in with the local sewing group, so I have found a Sew Along to join in online. It starts on 28th September, so for once I have not discovered it half way through but will be able to join in from the start. It is a sample quilt, which normally I don't like, but sometimes we need to stretch ourselves and I do need to learn some new skills. So why not.


If your interested, click on the button above and check it out. I must admit the main reason I'm doing it is because Angie, who is helping to put it all together, is based in Australia. Granted there is others helping so some of the schedule is US based, but I love the fact that there are things being done on the Australian time zone.

Ok I have to go and start looking for some fabrics now.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Sew what......

Wednesday 25th June, 2014

Wow, its been over a year. My poor neglected blog.

I have found a new way to lighten my purse and spend my hours.

Sewing. I've dabbled with sewing for many years but never really got stuck into it. I never saw the point of quilting. Honestly how many quilts does one person need?

Then I met Sharon. She runs  Sharon's Sewing Service. I needed a zip replaced and I was too lazy to do it myself so I went for a visit. Not only does she sew but she has a patchwork fabric shop. She invited me along to her one of the sewing days that she has at her place and I was hooked.

This year to encourage the ladies of the community in their patchworking/quilting/sewing she organized a friendship quilt. We meet once a month, Well twice a month now, and learn a new block. Everyone that wanted to participate put their names in a hat. Along side that hat was another hat which had the names of blocks that Sharon is teaching us through out the year. Names and blocks were drawn. The plan is simple enough. Person named decided on a colour and that was the colour theme for the block drawn and all the blocks sewn for that block are given to that person. So here have been my contributions towards some lovely ladies quilts.
The Merry Kite

The Palm Leaf - using Foundation Paper Piecing

Card Trick

Attic Window

Toad in a Puddle

Dutchmans Puzzle

Also along the way I have done some other various sewing activities.
Before we tackled the palm leaf, we did another class on foundation paper piecing as no one had ever done it before. In case you didn't know its sewing material onto paper basically. The best part is you don't have to worry about bias or the grain of the material.  It is a bit tricky at the start until you get the hang of it.

You have the material on the back and sew along the line. You do one section at a time so there is lots of getting up and down to trim and iron in between each new piece of material. So the picture above show what both sides end up looking like once you have finished. There are plenty of tutorials out there if your interested. 

I ended up using mine to make Miss E a tablet cover. There is a panel on the front and back

I then needed a sewing book to keep all my papers and designs in so I made myself a cover to go over one of those A4 display books.

Now I am having a go at hand piecing. I did these ones myself at home

The photo below is of my very latest hand piecing project. The Atlantic Jewel. I'm going to be game and see if I can do more and turn it into a quilt, but I have to get this one sewn first. It took me ages to cut out the middle bit to get all the lines to match. Here's what it looks like just laid out.

There are 8 triangles in that middle piece. Sharon was showing us how to use fabrics with borders or patterns to create new patterns.

Sew sew sew, as you can see I have been keeping myself busy.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

What have I done?

Thursday 6th June, 2013 

It dawned on my yesterday exactly what I had said I was going to give up with no processed for for 28 days.

To be honest, I dont think I will make.

My day started with a womens bible study group and believe it or not the subject was facing temptations. Sitting on the table while we had our cuppas were scones with jam and cream, lemon slice, carrot cake (from a packet) and some orange cake. AHHHHHHHHHH. I was good. I had nothing.

Then we had to go out in the afternoon, which meant we would be out for tea. So while the family ate pies and pasties, I had remembered to grab the last little bit of left over vegie soup from the fridge. Boy am I glad I didn't have it for lunch like I had planned.

So the thoughts did start to run through my head, what have I done? I might end up being a bit more "loosey".

Anyway, I just also wanted to share a really yummo recipe that I made on day 2. Chickpea and spinach burgers. I found the recipe while surfing some time ago and fell in love with it as its vegan and gluten free. I got it from Tale of Two Vegans Click on their name and if I have done things correctly it should take you straight to the recipe. It was posted back in 2009 but its a great recipe. 

I did make some changes, like I left out the soy sauce and I also baked them instead of fry them. I baked them at 180C for 15 minutes and then turned and baked for another 15 minutes.

I did make up a double batch so I could have some left over, but my teenagers devoured them. Oh well at least I know they were eating something healthy.

Wish me luck as I start out on day 4.