Monday, August 22, 2011

Educational Choices

Having been asked by many young mothers recently about homeschooling and reading one friend's recent blog, I just thought I would post a little about homeschooling since our family chose to utilize that educational choice for so many years. First of all, I don't necessarily think homeschooling is for everyone. Sometimes people are shocked by that! There were definitely times I steered certain people away from homeschooling. Overall, I see homeschooling as just another educational alternative that does become a lifestyle and has great benefits for families. It has challenges, requires a certain level of sacrifice for most families and may only be right for some of the time.

Our children all had some time in public school and we loved the elementary school our oldest ones attended through 2nd and 3rd grade. Wonderful staff there still! One of our children seemed to need something more and after two years, with much prayer, we gave home education a whirl for a one year period We enjoyed it so much and saw so much good for our family we continued on.

Homeschooling has become much more acceptable in society than in the early 90's when we started. Our homeschooling pioneers had it rough before it became legalized in FL. Now FL is one of the best states to homeschool in with many options and tremendous support.That did not happen by accident but was painstakingly built up by certain people in the state. I will do more on another blog about that. In fact, I will just try to blog a little bit each time because there is so much good to share about homeschooling. I have found the subject is very interesting even to people who would never consider it for their own families.

I will share my personal mantra in this first blog on the subject. "Every family home-educates to some degree" Vicky Evelo

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Chieko Okazaki - BYU Women's Conference

With the recent passing of Chieko, I came across this talk on another blog and copied it for my own. Chieko spoke and wrote so much that strengthened women. She lives on in her words and legacy.

“Well, my dear sisters, the gospel is the good news that can free us from guilt. We know that Jesus experienced the totality of mortal existence in Gethsemane. It’s our faith that he experienced everything- absolutely everything. Sometimes we don’t think through the implications of that belief. We talk in great generalities about the sins of all humankind, about the suffering of the entire human family. But we don’t experience pain in generalities. We experience it individually. That means he knows what it felt like when your mother died of cancer- how it was for your mother, how it still is for you. He knows what it felt like to lose the student body election. He knows that moment when the brakes locked and the car started to skid. He experienced the slave ship sailing from Ghana toward Virginia. He experienced the gas chambers at Dachau. He experienced Napalm in Vietnam. He knows about drug addiction and alcoholism.
Let me go further. There is nothing you have experienced as a woman that he does not also know and recognize. On a profound level, he understands the hunger to hold your baby that sustains you through pregnancy. He understands both the physical pain of giving birth and the immense joy. He knows about PMS and cramps and menopause. He understands about rape and infertility and abortion. His last recorded words to his disciples were, “And, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” (Matthew 28:20) He understands your mother-pain when your five-year-old leaves for kindergarten, when a bully picks on your fifth-grader, when your daughter calls to say that the new baby has Down syndrome. He knows your mother-rage when a trusted babysitter sexually abuses your two-year-old, when someone gives your thirteen-year-old drugs, when someone seduces your seventeen-year-old. He knows the pain you live with when you come home to a quiet apartment where the only children are visitors, when you hear that your former husband and his new wife were sealed in the temple last week, when your fiftieth wedding anniversary rolls around and your husband has been dead for two years. He knows all that. He’s been there. He’s been lower than all that. He’s not waiting for us to be perfect. Perfect people don’t need a Savior. He came to save his people in their imperfections. He is the Lord of the living, and the living make mistakes. He’s not embarrassed by us, angry at us, or shocked. He wants us in our brokenness, in our unhappiness, in our guilt and our grief. “