Exclusive Series: My First Day of Homeschooling

8 years ago
This article was written by a member of the SheKnows Community. It has not been edited, vetted or reviewed by our editorial staff, and any opinions expressed herein are the writer’s own.

I know, I know... homeschooling and Brazilian waxing are not exactly terms that you would find sitting side-by-side in a thesaurus, and please pardon the comparison. And yet, that is EXACTLY the comparison I am about to use. Because as I thought about it, the reactions to the announcement that I was homeschooling my 6th grader were AWFULLY similar to when I said I got my 1st Brazilian wax:

"OMG! I could NEVER do that. Been wondering what it's like for YEARS but NO...I am not brave enough!"

"I love, love, love, love, loooooooooooove it!!!!"

"Rookie. Snort! It can definitely be awful and hard at the beginning. You'll get used to it the longer you do it and then you'll wonder how you ever did it any other way!"

"I did it for awhile but it was just NOT for me"

"Y'all are INSANE to even TRY it!"


Just like I have had homeschooling squeaking around in my head for a long time, I had wondered for YEARS about that mythical, mysterious thing that was known as a "Brazilian Wax."  (And yes, I always thought about it in quotation marks as well.)

And one day, I just jumped in with both feet and DID it.





And in many ways my situation ended up being quite a bit the same: I just jumped into the deep end of the pool feet first.

And the day was long, painful and tear-inducing.

And yet?

I also REALLY think I am going to love the results.

Our first day was really, really tough.

You have to keep in mind that we firmly decided to homeschool LESS THAN A WEEK AGO. On Saturday afternoon the room we are using to homeschool looked like THIS:



Today, when I started homeschooling Christopher?

It looked like THIS:





NOTE: I do NOT recommend this to everyone. Please read this for my first installment on our decision to homeschool, and you will understand the advantages that we have like having a full curriculum hand-picked by  someone I trust that we are able to borrow and like having a HUGE support system. 

We did not get the bright and early start I had hoped for. For one, Christopher's computer wasn't quite done. For another, as I had been up until about 4 am getting his curriculum sorted and the week planned out and materials reviewed and polishing the content for the blog (Amuse Bouche: A perfect taste from Where Women Cook), my work was supposed to launch today for the magazine launching in December (We ended up not launching-it has a couple of issues).

I woke up feeling like I had been thrown off of a moving train. Then run over by a tractor. Then peed on by the guy driving the tractor.

I was stressed, exhausted and had the headache from hell.

And it seemed like the day just went down hill in many ways from there.

Here's a brief run down:

8:15 -- Wake up (late) to discover that James missed the bus and is still at home.  And his school starts at 8:20. Luckily, my mom comes over to see the room, and I can grab a quick shower since I don't have to pack up Butterlump and take him with us. Breakfast, makeup and fabulous hair are a luxury I do not have today.

9:20 -- FINALLY deposit James at school after an emergency stop at the gas station to fill up with gas before we run out of fuel and end up having to hitchhike on the side of the road.

10:00 -- Come home with a new baby gate, whiteboard and dry erase markers. Since aforementioned late-for-school son broke the existing one tripping over it in his rush to find his backpack and drew an illustration venting his frustration at his brother (and labeling him a "goober head") on the existing white board with a Sharpie. Discover that Jonathan is setting up Christopher's computer and teaching him how to use a tone generator and induction amplifier. I sit down to stare at the computer screen to do more editing on the content of Amuse Bouche for work.

11:00 --Butterlump fed, bathed and in bed for his nap and Christopher still working with Jonathan, I decide that as I was still inflicted with a hell of a headache after a ton of water, 5 Tylenol and a hot shower that I have to lay down to try and get the throbbing in my head to DIE. Email the web designers confirming my 3:30 appointment and curl up in the dark in the fetal position.

Noon -- Wearily emerge from my nap feeling not great but able to see myself surviving the day without jumping off a roof from the throbbing in my head. (Yes, I am a baby when it comes to headache pain. I rarely get headaches and they are UNACCEPTABLE TO ME.) Start Christopher on his first formal homeschool lesson.


12:03 -- Notice that there are three annoying as hell flies in the school room with us.

12:30 -- After discussing 2 current news stories out of the paper, I let Christopher start reading 3 chapters of the book we picked out for Halloween: "Bunnicula".

12:35 -- Ok, seriously? Those flies are starting to really piss me off, dudes.

1:10 -- We move on to writing. Every day I am going to have Christopher start writing something: a little story, a description, whatever we come up with. I just want him to write EVERY DAY. Today it was about the things he felt would be beneficial about homeschooling, what might be drawbacks and what he wanted out the most out of it. His conclusions "More one-on-one time with Mom and SLEEP." (Word.)

2:00 -- After taking a moment to tweet that I want to be all Glimore Girls and move to Stars Hollow to be Mrs. Backwards Baseball Cap, I start the weekly math DVD for Christopher

2:10 -- Sister-in-law of awesome that loaned us a ton of curriculum comes over to check on how we are doing. After discussing my plan for Christopher regarding music (private lessons with Grandma M & W on cello and piano and daily orchestra at TECS after their current concert is over), she graciously explains the math workbook to Christopher and saves my sanity.

3:00 -- 2 math worksheets done, Christopher and I start looking at what topics we want to cover about The Civil War.


3:30 -- Let Christopher go to his cousin's house since I have to head to Advent Creative for a meeting about tweaks that have to happen before the launch of the blog for Where Women Cook. (Aforementioned "Amuse Bouche". It is sooooo pretty, y'all. Should be up tomorrow or Wednesday. I'm so excited but man was it ever stressful trying to launch it the same day I started homeschooling.) Luckily, the guys at Advent make me GUFFAW. AND they had Excedrin. It was pretty much an awesome meeting. Even if I don't really remember a whole lot of it due to sheer tired and the fact that I can pretty much see a pulse in my eye at this point.

5:00 -- AFTER FACE PLANTING IN A GAS STATION PARKING LOT AND SHATTERING THE SCREEN OF MY PHONE, I arrive back home with Christopher, feed kids and baby a light snack.

5:30 -- Clean up and then head back in the classroom to copy his Latin and Greek roots flash cards and have him listen to his music history lesson on Handel and to finish writing his daily report on "Bunnicula."

5:45 -- Pondering how to work the slaughter of flies into the curriculum.


6:20 --Jonathan comes home surprised to still see us all still working. He thankfully takes over the dishes and laundry. (Because, MAN. No. Just...NO.)


7:35 -- Decide to put Lord of the Flies on the reading list for this year. It must be done.

7:46 -- Christopher and I clean up the classroom. School is done for the day. Feed Butterlump, brush teeth, quick bath and bed.

8:00 -- Papa John's arrives. I restrain from making out with the delivery boy out of sheer gratitude.

9:30 -- Bedtime for the older boys.

10:00 --Time to communicate with meh peeps online and write this post.


I left out many a thing that is irrelevant, un-bloggable or just me trying to keep the peace but truly, it was one of the most exhausting days I have had in a loooong time.

Even though I feel overwhelmed and tired at a molecular level and REALLY in need of adult-beverages-that-I-am-usually-not-even-a-fan-of, I am excited for tomorrow.


I guess this means I'll see you all tomorrow.

Because after all, tomorrow is another day with no mistakes in it. (Quoth Scarlett O'Shirley*)

For now?

I think that I should take the fact that I fell asleep listening to tomorrow's music history lesson as a cue that it is time for bed.



*Please tell me SOMEBODY got that.

More from parenting

by Holly Zwalf | a day ago
by Claire Gillespie | 2 days ago
by Claire Gillespie | 2 days ago
by Madison Medeiros | 3 days ago
by Ronnie Koenig | 3 days ago
by Madison Medeiros | 3 days ago
by Fairygodboss | 3 days ago
by Madison Medeiros | 4 days ago
by Amelia Edelman | 4 days ago
by Kristine Cannon | 4 days ago
by Lindsay Tigar | 4 days ago
by Claire Gillespie | 4 days ago
by Claire Gillespie | 5 days ago
by Jennifer Mattern | 5 days ago
by Jennifer Mattern | 5 days ago
by Amelia Edelman | 6 days ago