The Back to School Meltdown

back to school stress

I promise this is not an advertisement for Corn Pops.

Our home school, Pacific Christian Academy, officially reopened its doors on Tuesday.

The first day went so well, I was euphoric really.

First day of Tot School, which means nothing at all, really.

First Day of Tot School, which means nothing at all, really.

I felt like I was on a roll! The 2nd year is so much easier than the first!

And then the rest of the week just kept on coming, and coming, and coming. School has gone well, but life isn’t just school. Teachers don’t just work from the beginning of the school day to the end of it. We work for HOURS afterward.


Only this week, we have had an outside activity every. single. blessed. night. I am now the embodiment of grumpy because I’ve had no time to plan or prep or blog or stare at the ceiling!!

I have spent my school days saying,

“Well, I am not sure where I put the days of the week, so we will find those this weekend.”

“Oh, I didn’t get to prep your clipboards last night, so hold on, let me get that.”


Non-stop obligations and activities terrifies me. I long for quiet time at home. I have a full day of teaching and doctor appointments tomorrow, and I have to co-host a party tonight.

This is my desperate plea for prayers. I sound so drama queen, right? Ugh. Tisk, tisk, April. Pull yourself together. I’m just not okay right now. I’m “hanging in there”, but this pace of life is not my thing.

I am a solution oriented person, so these are my solutions:

1. One deadline that was today will simply have to be moved.

2. One of these activities will be fulfilled, and then we will not renew that commitment. Over-stretching ourselves does not make for joy.

3. I refuse to leave the house this weekend. Refuse. It will take an emergency or flood, which is highly unlikely, or something to get my rear out of this house.

4. Much prayer and Bible study and being with my mom and husband this weekend will hopefully help me with THAT FEELING. You know the feeling where you are so stressed and overwhelmed that it feels like the roof is going to fall on your head? No? Just me? 😉

The sky is falling! The sky is falling!

5. There have been other problems, people problems, that I need to just not worry about. Let it go! Let it go! I am so Elsa right now.

You know what? One of my biggest grievances was that I didn’t get to blog ALLL week-long. I feel so much better now!

I hope you are all having a good week. I’d like to say Congratulations to my sister-in-law and nephew, as he is now officially potty-trained. That is a major accomplishment.

And THANK YOU, Mom, for always coming when I call. My village wouldn’t function without you. Thank you!

This verse came to mind today, and no, by foes, I do not just mean my little children:


…2My foes have trampled upon me all day long, For they are many who fight proudly against me. 3When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You. 4In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere man do to me?…         Psalm 56:2-4




back to school funOnly 2 days until Saturday! Only 2 days until Saturday!

I promise to finally upload the Back to School giveaway, with more first day pictures, this weekend. I promise. This week just fought a little more valiantly than I did, so come back soon!






Making Over My Morning…Like a Night Owl

Make Over Your Morning Like a Night Owl!

I’ve mentioned before that I signed up for the Make Over Your Morning Course by Crystal Paine, of

I can’t tell you how many of my friends have asked me how that’s going! And some of you mentioned the same misgivings that I felt:
“I saw the part about her waking up at 5:45am, and decided that is not for me.”

I love that I have friends that I can relate to.

I have friends that are morning people too, and I’m always trying to get into their heads and figure out HOW they do it!

I asked one of my high energy friends this question– How do you get up so early?

She said, “Oh, I just love getting up early in the morning.”


I figured she must have a great deal of self-discipline to make herself go to bed early enough to be able to get up before 6 every morning, so I forged on with my cross-examination:

“But how early do you have to go to bed to be able to handle waking up that early?”

And that’s the part where she admitted that she goes to bed around midnight but just doesn’t need that much sleep.

Which confirms it. She (and many others of you) is not human at all, but instead she is a super-human and must be of an entirely different species.

And that’s okay!

My body works completely differently from hers, and you know what?

That’s okay too!

Why should I begrudge her the gift of needing little sleep? Why should I beat myself up over my need for at least 8 hours/night? I am finished feeling ashamed that at 7 am, I often look like this:

make over your morning like a night owl

6:45 am

I get up between 7 and 7:15 these days, but that is not always the case. Right now, Alan is in graduate school, so he keeps later hours than our norm. I’m one of these people who has to stay awake until everyone goes to bed. I can’t help it. I do. Since Alan stays up later right now, I do too.

I’ve tried to build myself schedules that did not allow for my sleep needs. Last year, I thought that in order to be a successful home school mom and blogger, I needed to wake up every morning at 6 am.

And I turned into heavy-eyelids-unhappy-snappy Mommy. No, thank you. I couldn’t even finish my day. I’d spend from 2 to 4 every afternoon just sort of laying on my bed and staring into space the whole first nine weeks of last school year!

Gradually, I realized that if I want to be a good mom, I need to sleep until 7.

Now, I have good news about the Make Over Your Morning course.

One change that she does not say that you have to make, and believe me, I refuse to do it, is getting up earlier.

Some people may genuinely need to wake up earlier, so you may feel lead that way, but that’s not what the course is all about.

So far, I’m only on day 7. It’s been more about reminding you to prioritize your time in order to be more productive, setting ACHIEVABLE goals for yourself, and having good morning and evening routines.

I love the videos of the Make Over Your Morning the most. It’s like listening to a motivational speaker everyday. I particularly loved this You Tube video, which is also referenced in the course:

It’s called “Dispelling the myth that I do it all”. No one does ‘it all’!

Some of you have asked if I made any changes from the series.

Yes! It has been a great reminder about setting attainable goals and breaking those goals into small tasks, but those were things I already KNEW to do. I just wasn’t necessarily doing it.

Here are changes I am making:

1. Spending less time on Facebook. Most of you already know that I spend too much time on there. I was able to cut back by NOT putting the Facebook app or log in on my new phone. I only check Facebook when I’m on my computer now.

So don’t think that I don’t like what you’re posting! It’s just that I’m reading FB a lot less!

I used to enjoy FB, so I spent way too much time on there, but lately it’s been full of extreme political stuff. And all that Planned Parenthood mess? Oh my gosh. That makes me want to throw up. I know the public needs to know about it, but I just can’t read it. I’ve had too many babies to be able to think about it.

2. Setting home school prep goals. I’m knocking them out a little at a time.

3. Getting up earlier plays no part in that!

4. I set a hard “Nap time is blog time rule.” So, at this moment, it’s 1:20, and I haven’t even finished cleaning up lunch, but JD and Dan are asleep, so THIS is the ONLY good blog time.

Also, there are a few advantages to being a night owl that doesn’t wake up at 6!

make over your morning like a night owl

See how wide awake I look at 8pm? (Truthfully, I don’t look that happy every night, but this was our anniversary!)

It’s not unusual to find me at 9:30 pm, scrubbing carpet stains out and vacuuming, something a morning person probably couldn’t do. Have you ever cleaned carpet stains out while the kids are still awake? It’s impossible. They track dirt on top of the wet carpet, making it worse!

I have the energy to clean the kitchen up before going to bed. Many people can’t do that!

I can stay up late making lesson plans without falling asleep. I’m not sleepy, even at 10pm!

We all just have to work within the framework of who we are. No need to try to be somebody else, right?

I can’t wait to finish this series. If you’d like to join me, here’s the link to the Make Over Your Morning site. Just click on the picture below:

Click on this affiliate link to learn more about this course or to sign up.

Be sure to follow my blog on Facebook, and we night owls can encourage each other!

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“Good news from the graveyard!”

Mission at San Juan Baptiste

Mission at San Juan Baptiste: Alan and I visited this beautiful site a few weeks ago.

That sounds like a terribly morbid title for a post, doesn’t it? 😉 Don’t worry. We haven’t actually taken to haunting “dying holes.”

But I DO have several bits of GOOD news!!! They are, in completely random order, as follows:

#1. Have I mentioned a thousand times yet that this is the LAST WEEK OF SCHOOL?????  I have NEVER been so excited to see the last day of school arrive. This whole first-year-back-to-teaching, all while relocating the family across the country, schmorgasborg kicked my rear end up one side and down the other.

BUT, it was also good. There is always good to be found in a thing, well more like USUALLY.

Alan and I, when we were first married, agreed to steer clear of words like “never” and “always”. I think if we stuck to that idea, we’d argue over silly things a whole lot less!

What good came out of home schooling this year?

1. I grew leaps and bounds in my faith. I learned to pray more, and I learned to count on God to answer those prayers. I was humbled, and being humble is a highly desirable trait.

2. Joshua’s attitude is so greatly improved, it makes me giddy just thinking about it.

3. The boys grew so close to each other. They were close before, but now it’s almost ridiculous. Joshua came running out of the bathroom the other day, where he’d discovered a preschool’s business card. “Mom, tell me you’re not going to send Daniel to preschool next year!!” the surprise and consternation ringing in his voice.

“Well, yeah…why wouldn’t we?”

“Well, for starters, then he wouldn’t BE with us!” Joshua explained, as he crawled onto his home base, the trampoline.

“Oh, Okay, well let me calm your fears. He’s only on a waiting list, and it would be a place he could go while you’re at Classical Conversations,” I explained.

“Well, okay then. That would be all right.”

I did not tell him that it would also be Wednesday, maybe even Friday….but we’ll cross that bridge if he comes off the waiting list. Yikes!

4. I learned so much more about my children. I now can say with 100% assurance that Caleb does NOT have ADD. He listens intently, and he absorbs like a sponge. I had no idea. Joshua, on the other hand, definitely needs to lessen his amazing ability to tune people out at will.

I got to finally be a fly on the wall of their learning processes. They are such opposites, these two boys. Joshua doesn’t test well because he flies through his work, carelessly. However, the boy can memorize ANYTHING, practically instantly, and I have been rather impressed!

Caleb just lives to have fun, and he thinks the classroom is fun. I’d put Caleb back in school in a heartbeat, but then Joshua would be all alone. Caleb loves structure, and he wants to know exactly what will happen each day, before it happens. He needs to see the plan.  Sometimes I make up the plan as I go along, and that’s really not even hard or weird to me, so this was sort of a problem for Caleb.

That’s why I’m trying so hard to plan next year out, in more detail, in advance.

Confession time: While I love to make plans, I rarely actually LOOK at my plans. I rarely look at that day’s calendar, which drives my poor husband crazy. I commit events to memory, and that works 90% of the time, and when it doesn’t….I end up owing dentists large sums of money for not showing up for my appointment.  Yep. I am that lady.

I go to grocery stores with detailed lists, but then I think I have them memorized and never look at the list while I’m in the store. This works okay for me, but I inevitably forget something that was on Alan’s part of the list.  Why do I do this??? I think it’s time I start admitting that 90% memorized isn’t so reliable. I have got to learn to start looking at calendars and lists.

I have to know. Am I the only one that makes lists and then doesn’t read them?? Someone, tell me I’m not alone!!!

Okay….back on track here…..good news….

Destin, Florida, 2012

#2. Beach trip with my mom and sister-in-law coming up!!  Wahoo!! We’re talking the beautiful, HOT, white sands of the GULF OF MEXICO, ya’ll.  So excited!!  Would someone please tell auto correct that ya’ll IS a word. I refuse to spell it “yawl,” like it wants me to!

#3. I get to sing in church next weekend! I LOVE singing. I’m singing with a group, not the group in this video. We’re doing a bluegrass song, in honor of “Hillbilly Sunday.” I wondered if I should be offended that there’s a whole themed out Sunday ridiculing what could be interpreted as my people, but I decided to just accept it and move on.

Here’s the song, and the title of this post:


Can’t wait!


Pssst!  Please don’t forget to enter our giveaway!  Click here We’ll be giving away free Polish pottery this week!!

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