It’s more than just a drink; it’s a way of life. Have you ever felt so drawn to something that you would do almost anything to get it? That you would drive miles and miles out of your way to get it? Practically trade your firstborn to get your hands on it?
That mocha liquid with its sweet-smelling aroma that drip, drip, drips and turns an everyday housewife into an addict.
There are worse things to be addicted to, of course. If I had to choose an addiction, I’d probably go with coffee too. I’d have mine with extra cream, a hefty dose of sugar and biscotti. A cup of Joe always seems extra fancy when served with biscotti.
But what do I know about coffee anyway? I’ve never even put a single sip to my lips. What would it be like to taste the richness of an arabica bean for the first time at 34 years old? Perhaps I should start my children young so they don’t have this “problem.”
Going to Starbucks as a non-coffee drinker is as preposterous as sending my six year old into a bar. Not to mention the ill effects that place has on my wallet. Why yes, I’m happy to pay $2.47 for a Passion Tea that I could make for exactly 16 cents at home.
Now I see why some people like coffee.
Brave Writer Conference in Austin, TX
My ramblings on coffee are courtesy of an 8-minute freewrite from the Brave Writer conference this past weekend, and are just the tip of the iceberg of an amazing set of skills I learned. We went in-depth on every aspect of the writing process, and how to successfully work with our children at each stage of development.
But what really stuck with me wasn’t the mechanics of teaching writing, it was the big picture of what our homeschool can look like.
Julie Bogart, THE Brave Writer, reminds me of a friend I wish I had, the mother I do have, and the homeschooler I want to be. She is inspirational, yet so far from aspirational. She has a realistic approach to writing, loving others and homeschooling that makes all of her wonderful ideas seem within the real of possibility for even an everyday mama like me.
Big Picture Musings
As I sat at the conference in awe of so many amazing homeschool parents, I felt such gratitude that I am finding my way while my children are still so young. I feel absolutely certain there will be plenty of mistakes on our homeschool journey, but what I have learned time and time again from seasoned homeschoolers is that these younger years set the foundation for everything else that is to come.
If we can focus more on the “home” and let the “school” happen when there is a spark of interest, we’ll be cultivating the love of learning so many children seem to be lacking these days. We didn’t choose to homeschool only to replicate a school in our home.
It’s ok to focus on the homey aspects of being in an educational partnership with my children. We can have big juicy conversations snuggling under the covers. We can rub each other’s shoulders before tackling tough tasks. We can say that school ends when tears begin.
We’ll value rich experiences as an integral part of our homeschool, not a distraction from it. We won’t cultivate a habit of struggle, we’ll cultivate a habit of challenge met. I must remember that there is no difference between living and learning.
My oldest daughter suffers from selective mutism, an anxiety disorder that prevents her from speaking in many situations outside of the home. The treatment for this disorder is building brave muscles– exposure to uncomfortable situations and finding ways to overcome them. I have no doubt that divine intervention led me to Brave Writer. It feels like destiny.
My daughter is a creative at heart. She has so many stories to tell and with the knowledge I have to help her Jot It Down, Brave Writer is giving us the chance to preserve this piece of her childhood that might otherwise be lost and forgotten.
When she can’t tell a story with her voice, now we have options instead of despair. We can share her stories with grandparents and family and give her the power to know that her brave voice, whether through sound waves or on paper, will be heard loud and clear.