Friday, December 20, 2013

What If It All Stopped?

Seven years ago, exactly, we moved to this town and when we did we hit the ground running.  We opted to live outside the city because our city is the 5th most dangerous city in the nation.  By moving outside the city to the country, we found that we saved money on city taxes and have more safety for our family.  There is just one problem:  We live a half hour from EVERYTHING.  We spend at least an hour a day in the car running to and from the Academy.  We run “into town” for shopping and for this or that.  Weekdays we wake up at 6:00 and run, run, run all day.  Then we get back home at 4pm where the children work on homework an average of 2 hours per night.  I still need to cook dinner, the kids have chores.  They need to take showers and we are pretty busy until we drop into bed at night.  Wednesdays we hurry up to get home at 4pm, so we can let the dog out, so we can hurry up, eat dinner, clean the kitchen, and get back “into town” for church by 6.  Church is over by 8 and we travel back  home, settle the kids, get them showered and their teeth brushed before falling into bed after 9pm.  With active kids there is always something with the church, school, or an activity with their friends, but these activities are always "in town."  

We didn’t realize how hectic our lives are until we adopted.  Brandon would moan any time we had to leave the house.  He was a home body like his Mama. 

Tim and I had some time to sit and think last month while we were in Ukraine.  We looked at Matthew and thought to ourselves that we do not want him to arrive in America and jump into our crazy American lifestyle smack in the middle of a school year.  With Brandon's adoption, he arrived at the end of the school year, so he had all summer to adjust to our family and American lifestyle.  Brandon adjusted seamlessly. 

The girls’ world has been rocked over the last 3 years.  They have joyfully adjusted to Brandon, then mourned his death; they’ve gracefully and sacrificially dealt with us coming and going to Ukraine with the adoptions, handled Tim’s business travel, and now they look forward to their soon-to-be new brother, Matthew “Edik” which will be, no doubt, another adjustment.  We are super excited to get Matthew and feel so blessed to be called by God to adopt him.  God is SO GOOD.  But we are all tired.  

On the car ride into town a few weeks ago the kids were grumbling about having play practice, a Christmas program and some other things “in town” that they didn’t want to attend.  I asked the kids the question, “What if it all stopped?”  Their mouths dropped open and they all voiced that they were tired…with life.  The girls have begged us to home school them for at least 3 years.  They are tired of piling into the car for the commute.  They are tired of homework.  They mentioned 10 or 15 things with which they are “tired.” They’re just kids and they are tired with life.  It made me sad.  They all expressed that if the busyness stopped, they would be so happy and feel free! 

They would have free time to play creatively and to read books for fun.

So, Tim, unaware of my conversation with the kids, came home from a week-long business trip and said, “What if it all stopped?  What if you resigned from your job and began homeschooling the kids…in January?”  We talked about how calm that would be.  I would travel alone back for our final trip to Ukraine to get Matthew and come back home to my current 4 children and just “be.”  We can all bond at our own pace.  Matthew won’t be shoved into a hectic way of life.  It is traumatic enough for these kids leaving the only world they know in Ukraine and come to America.  

For now, after researching many options I’ve decided that the girlies are going to do the A Beka video streaming courses and Matthew will do ACE paces and perhaps Rosetta Stone.

Our goal is to take a season off to rest and then re-evaluate at the end of May or June.  We will then decide if we will sell our home and relocate our family in town and place our kids back in the Academy or if we will just stay put and continue homeschooling.
I am sad to give up my job at the church that I’ve had for 5 years.  I attained my Master’s Degree in Accounting and now I won’t even be using my degree for what I was trained.  It is terrifying to have to go down to one income again.  It is a definite sacrifice on behalf of what is best for our children.  However, I am SO VERY EXCITED to be with my precious children.  I am happy to honor my hubby’s request that I teach our children in our home. It will be so nice to not get in the car 6 days a week.  I am thankful that Tim works hard outside the home to provide for our family so that I am able to stay home.  I am grateful that our country still allows families to teach their children in their own home.  I am prayerfully hoping this works out well with our girls and Matthew will thrive.  

Ever since Brandon died a passage that runs through my mind often is Ecclesiastes 3 and I have realized the reality of seasons in our lives.  “There is a time to be born and a time to die…there is a time to plant and a time to reap….a time to tear and a time to sew, a time to keep silence and a time to speak.”  For our family, this is our time to make it all stop.  It is our time to silence the noise in the lives of our children.  It is a time to regroup after 3 years of turbulence.  It is our time to grow together and to heal.  It is our time to rest.  We pray that God blesses our family and our submission to His will for our family in this season of our lives.   


  1. Good for you! I am going to miss my precious students from last year and the hugs they give me, but I am happy for you.

  2. Sounds like a very wise decision. Our family has been forced to slow down this year because of my illness. There's been a lot of learning in this season of slowing down.

  3. I don't think you will regret it! We made that decision 4 years ago and have been so happy homeschooling! We will be praying for you as you make the transition.

  4. I have homeschooled our boys ever since they have been in school. It is wonderful that you will be doing this. I hope that you find it to be as good as we have. We use A Beka also. May the Lord continue to bless your family as you all enter this new season in your lives. I pray that your family will find more time to just relax now.