Homeschool Confessional – Apologies – Construction, etc!

Hey everyone!! Just warning you right up front, this post has become part confessional, part apology, part explanation of our website!!

Homeschool confessionalI have been humbled by how many new readers we have these days.  For just one Mom sharing the work she’s making for her kids and the hands-on activities we’ve done along the way,  it’s really been an inspiring journey.  I just love what I do… and have been blown away and thankful for how much we’ve grown in the past couple of years!

I’ve loved too all the amazing connections I’ve made because of the website! Keep those emails coming! 🙂

But, I’m feeling bad and just have to say sorry! If you were coming over, I’d be apologizing for the piles of laundry and messy dining room table… but here on the website I’m apologizing for the challenges you might have finding what you need/want. Sigh… if only I had more time in the week!!! But… you know, it’s just me here… (okay and the very best, most supportive Hubby and kids in the world!!).

The thing is, no one, not one of you have said anything, but I feel bad for the state of the website  – and in particular about the state of the Store. (I have a temporary solution and you can just skip down below my excuses to see that!!)

My excuse off that bat is… well, my priority is homeschooling the kids… creating lessons that are engaging, memorable and thorough.  I then try to share what we’ve done with you all here on the website (between soccer & crossfit, music lessons and scout meetings…) … but there are lots of areas where I fall short (like I said, if you come over you’ll see that the living room needs to be vacuumed again b/c we have a dog and two cats… there are some dishes in the sink…).  And, I also know that things here on the website need some work!

I’ve been trying to organize things (thus the tabs I have for science, history, language arts and PreK) and the categories over on the left sidebar (if you are on a desktop). It’s also why I created those free resource guides grade by grade — K-1, 2-3, 4-5, 6-8… I also have an e-book that I had hoped to share this summer for those who write saying “Help! I’m new! Where do I start?!” or might be looking for some teaching strategies and ways to engage the kids (even more than you’ve been doing because I just *know* you are an *amazing* homeschool Mom (or Dad… gotta say that b/c my bro-in-law has been the main homeschool parent at home) already!).    That e-book didn’t get done/polished enough to share (yet). 😥 I’m sorry. [But I did write a post about Starting to Homeschool that has an abbreviated version of the teaching strategy list.]

Homeschool confessional As I add in more and more packets (and get reader requests… and try to add those in), I know the Store area is getting cumbersome. I mean seriously… it’s awkward, right… There’s a long list and you have to scroll down *forever* to see pictures. (scrolling and scrolling!)  Sigh.. Again, I’m sorry. Ack.

Sometime I hope to re-do the store and make it much more user-friendly and pretty looking… but since my priority (back to the top again!) is homeschooling the kids and making sure I’m prepared for our units during the homeschool year, it’s fallen way down on the priority list.  (Kind of like that endless list in the Store area!!!!)

Part of that is how I choose to spend my time too (if I’m being honest)… I love, love, love curriculum development… love curling up with our (upcoming) material and diving deep. I mean I’m talking crazy academic nerd here! (I’m listening to a 10-hour podcast all about the intricacies of WWI… just because… well, 1. because we’re covering 20th century history this year and 2. because I love having all those ah-hah! moments as new things click! Who else weeds the garden and does that?!! And last spring break? I woke up early, just to spend time curled up with chemistry books!)

Back to the cumbersome Store situation… it’s just low on the priority list right now.  So…  I’m trying to add in Quick Previews as a pothole-patch measure. 😆 In the coming months or so, you’ll see those pop up over in the store. They are pdfs that will let you glimpse at some of the material in our Packets.

I think the quick previews will be helpful especially for something like our Rainforest Unit (quick preview here) which goes into so much depth/detail about animals, insects, deforestation, tropical vs. temperate forests, etc.  🙂

Please let me know if that’s helpful! (Or just drop me a line to say hi, I love getting to “meet” the homeschoolers who’ve stumbled across our blog too! Or drop me a line to say that you too have a laundry couch that your family can never sit on!!!)

Here are a few of the Quick Preview pdfs that I’ve done so far

Earth Science Quick Preview

Layers of the Atmosphere Quick PreviewHomeschoolDenUnderConstruction-Dec

Chemistry Packet Quick Preview

States of Matter – Quick Preview

Human Body Systems Quick Preview

Skeletal System Packet – Quick Preview

Digestive System Packet Preview

Circulatory System Packet – Quick Preview

Cell Packet – Quick Preview

Animal Packet Quick Preview

World Animals Packet Quick Preview

Rainforest Packet Quick Preview

Life Cycles Packet Quick Preview

Biology Packet Quick Preview

Scientific Classification and Taxonomy Quick Preview

Ocean Packet Quick Preview

Electricity and Circuits STEM Unit Quick Preview

Simple Machines Packet Quick Preview

World Facts and Geographical Features Packet Quick Preview

Ancient History Writing Paper Set Preview

Age of Exploration Quick Preview

Civics and Government Packet Quick Preview

Oregon Trail Quick Preview

Now back to the not getting everything done train of thought…  I was having a conversation with another homeschooling Mom (by email since that’s the age we live in!!)… about comparison.  We often think that others have it all together. That someone’s shiny moment is their reality.  It’s something many women face… not just homeschoolers, but those working full time or those with young kids or those with their own challenges.  We think that most other people have it together (and then conclude that we just don’t or that we’re falling short).  Sigh… But the thing is, we all have a lot on our plates. We shouldn’t be focusing on the “should” (be doing) but on the amazing, beautiful things we’re doing right now! (Yikes-that was a confusing sentence!) In other words, some areas of our lives may be a tiny bit neglected, but we shouldn’t do that negative self-talk, right!!

And this very post proves the point.  I doubt if you are losing much sleep thinking “Gee, Liesl could do something to make navigating around the Homeschool Den Store a bit easier…” But we all put that pressure on ourselves.  We do that with our homeschooling (“Oh, should I be doing this or that with the kids?” “Am I doing enough?”) and we do that in other areas of our lives too, right?!

But, let’s be happy and proud of all we’re doing and sharing with our kids & families, our community and with the world. We are raising these amazing, fabulous kids who are going to be the *very best* versions of themselves!  We are amazing!! We can do this!!

This wasn’t meant to be a confessional, but maybe just a glimpse into why things aren’t as sparkly and polished as I would like. But you know what, that’s okay!!

I’m going to take some much-needed time off. I’ll even be unplugged for a stretch while we’re camping this month! 🙂

Obviously I haven’t updated that picture since I (my website) is obviously not under the Parents umbrella any more!! But, it seems appropriate to have an imperfect picture at this point in the post anyway, right?!!!

Anyway, I hope you are having a very lovely, very restful summer.  If you are gearing up for next year… you might enjoy these posts

That’s about it! If you made it to the very bottom of this post… wow! Thanks for reading!! 😎

See you again soon here or over at our Homeschool Den Facebook Page! Don’t forget to Subscribe to our Homeschool Den Newsletter. You might also want to check out some of our resources pages above (such as our Science, Language Arts, or History Units Resource Pages) which have links to dozens of posts.  You might want to join our free Homeschool Den Chat Facebook group.  Don’t forget to check out Our Store as well. :) Homeschool Den StoreAgain, if you are interested in joining our Homeschool Den Newsletter, feel free to subscribe here:

SubscribeHappy Homeschooling!

~Liesl

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5 Responses

  1. Anna says:

    Liesl,
    You have been such a huge inspiration to me. Your passion, excitement and focus of giving your kids a foundational love of learning has boosted not only my confidence, but my focus and passion as well. Your site can be a bit overwhelming to the already overwhelmed homeschool mommy…but we individually need to step back and take little bites and not try to swallow everything ovule done through the years, all in one huge gulp! Keep doing what you are doing. We are all blessed by you, most importantly, I am certain your family is blessed by you!

    • homeschooldenadmin says:

      Thank you for leaving such a kind message, Anna! You made a really good point. We have been homeschooling for many years. We did all these activities over the course of many years! Some units combine all the activities that each of the kids did as they hit that age (so it probably seems like we did 3 times more than is possible!) And, some activities will resonate with some kids and not with others. 🙂 That’s is what makes homeschooling challenging. We’re always trying to find what works with each of our (very different) kids! Again, thanks for your lovely message! Happy Homeschooling! ~Liesl

  2. Donna says:

    Just wanted to drop a line and tell you thanks for all the hard work and time you have shared with the homeschooling community. I have followed your site for quite a while. I am just getting a chance to really use the outlines and units that you have graciously shared. They work wonders in our hoeschool.
    Once again thanks to you and your family for their patience and your contributions to homeschoolers everywhere.

    -Just one mommy in OKC

  3. Donna says:

    Just wanted to drop a line and tell you thanks for all the hard work and time you have shared with the homeschooling community. I have followed your site for quite a while. I am just getting a chance to really use the outlines and units that you have graciously shared. They work wonders in our homeschool.
    Once again thanks to you and your family for their patience and your contributions to homeschoolers everywhere.

    -Just one mommy in OKC

    • homeschooldenadmin says:

      Wow, Thanks so much for your wonderful message! It really means a lot to all of us (the kids read your lovely message over my shoulder!). The kids have definitely a part of this journey. They always get the first drafts of the packets and are becoming amazing editors… quickly pointing out spelling errors and mistakes on the printables. 🙂 I guess that’s a good skill too, right! Thanks again for taking the time to leave a comment! ~Liesl

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