i was asked in a comment to talk about our choice of schools and how we came to the decision on where to start elementary school for our oldest daughter.

well gosh it wasn't easy.  we are in a great school district with strong test scores and our house is zoned for an elementary school that some of my friends are happy with, some not so happy.  in my gut i just knew we needed to explore our options.  austin is nothing if not adventurous and well educated, so there is not a shortage of education options.  from unschooling to private to charter to waldorf, we have it all.  and we have it all nearby.

i talked to parents at all kinds of schools.   i quickly in the early fall ruled out the most common alternative choice for our friends and community- a hybrid homeschool, university school that was classical christian education.  kids go to school just 2 days a week in kinder and do 2 days of homeschool.  my reasoning for ruling this out was that my own schedule and abilities just made it seem too far a reach for us.

we applied to christian schools, we entered charter school lotteries.  we prayed, i cried.  i panicked.

christmas rolled around and i told kevin, we should at least go to the homeschool/university school open house.  we rsvp'ed and planned to attend.  then the truck ran over our lives and everything was on hold indefinitely.  she was accepted at a small private christian school.  i thought this seemed simple, safe, yes.

as we emerged from the accident fog, things seemed to shift a bit.  we went to the late spring university homeschool open house.  we knew that night, it was right.  it was our school.  i was terrified and peaceful at the same time.  this meant a lot of change, a lot.  change.

we applied and then held our breath.  the longer we waited the more i knew i would be positively devastated if she was not accepted.  then when we were lucky enough to be accepted i panicked that i was not sending my kids away 5 days a week.  haven't i been waiting for a chance to be the one with a place to send her kids 5 days a week for nearly 6 years?!

i made the choice to close a portion of my business indefinitely to accommodate this change and have cut back my work hours roughly by half to make space in my week for the homeschool days that we will have starting with the school year.

since making this decision about her schooling i have felt freedom, community, and am excited but also intimidated by the coming year.  i think she and i both have so much to learn and i am thrilled that we will be growing together.  we will be together.  this makes me the happiest mom.  i know it will be a stretch for both of us and i adore that we will go through it all together.

we have also decided to make our education decisions one year at a time.  this is our choice for this year and this year only.  we do not know what the future holds and will cherish being an active part of our daughter's kindergarten year.
there are just certain things in life that you don't know the depth of your passion for until pushed.  i have begun to realize how strongly i feel about the freedom of expression and worship lately.  it isn't something i have given much thought in the past and what a blessing it is to live in a country where i have been privileged to take this freedom for granted.

as a mom i allow and encourage my kiddos to worship every day- in songs, in dance, in our words, in the way we treat others.  it is all worship.  or rather it CAN all be worship.

i want my kids to be able to feel fully themselves in every environment.  to feel authentic and comfortable with all walks of people and in all places.  

we started at a new school this week.  kindergarten is becoming a reality very quickly.  i already feel fed and nurtured by our school choice and i am so so excited about this coming year.  as these random disparate thoughts were bouncing around my head this morning i sat in a lecture and heard a school leader say "don't reduce your faith to morals and behavior.  your kids need to know and trust the truth of the gospel" 

amen, hallelujah to that.  so here's to a year of character building.  i think lily and i both have a lot to learn in kindergarten, but my greatest hope is that she will feel fully able to be her true self, to find ways to worship in her own way daily, and to find a connection to the truth that is the gospel.


do you ever see a new product and think 'i totally should have thought of that!'?  i saw a post on facebook about something called TILE and oh-my-goodness.  if only this had been around when i was a kid, it could have saved us some very tense afternoons of being ordered to search the house high and low for my dad's keys, dayplanner, and remote.  ha!