Sunday, August 15, 2010

Confessions of an Unorganized Homeschool Mom

Some things I excel at. For instance, one year, I made it to over 200 doctor's appointments and was on time (or early) for every single one of them. My kids also eat reasonably balanced dinners most nights of the week.

But then there's the other side. My grocery lists are often scribbled on scraps of paper, and I often lose them en route to the grocery store. I guess it's no wonder that I'm sometimes a bit more creative with meal selections than my unadventurous family would prefer.

Compared to its normal state, my desk is relatively clean this week. I'll try not to think about the fact that at least 80% of my desk items are still in a cardboard box somewhere, and that I can't find much of anything yet. I shudder to think of what it'll look like when we try to start school next week or when Lauren's therapy appointments start multiplying or when I try to find a few more of our favorite recipes.

Meanwhile, I'm constantly in search of the "perfect" planner to organize our homeschool assignments, keep track of our appointments, and perhaps even keep me up-to-date on birthdays.

Finally, I may have found the "Holy Grail" to work miracles in my life. Well, perhaps not *the* Holy Grail, but I now have high hopes for being more organized this year. This week I downloaded The 2010 Old Schoolhouse Planner.

Drumroll, please....

Travel the World

The term "Planner" barely does this product justice. It is subtitled, "Making a Plan for School and Home," but that only barely begins to describe all that is included in this 614 page document. I can print out a new calendar to record our activities. I can keep track of phone numbers, addresses, websites, menu plans, gift ideas, and so much more. Each month, I'll have a new set of inspiring homeschool articles to savor. My list could go on and on...

I've seen other planners before. I've bought quite a few different calendars, journals, or organizers. This one looks like I could make it work for me. Here's just a small peak into my imagination as I dream about this coming school year:

Science Experiment, Fall 2008

BP (Before The 2010 Schoolhouse Planner): One day last winter, we were on day 135 of Read-Alouds, 142 of Readers, lesson 27 of Math, page 195 of some other material, and day 51 of Science. I'm still not exactly sure why Brennan did the last 2/3 of his vocabulary workbook in May.

NIC (New Improved Cristi): I seriously doubt we'll ever be completely on track for every subject at the same time. On the other hand, with better record-keeping, I can tell where we got off track, and help get us back on track before we're too far out of sync. I can also tell when Addison gets a few days behind in Science instead of letting it pass by unnoticed until she's two complete units behind where we thought we'd be.


BP: Garlic Lime Chicken would taste nearly as good with lemon or perhaps even orange juice, right?

NIC: Really, garlic lime chicken tastes best with both garlic and limes. Vegetables are a nice addition, too.


BP: Part of the fun of being my relative is that you never know when you'll receive a birthday gift.

NIC: Maybe I should warn my immediate family so they won't faint from surprise when they receive a card or present on time.


BP: I'm really good at making grand predictions about how my life would change just as soon as I find the perfect organizing tool.

NIC: When I realize that making all these changes is probably more difficult than just logging into the TOS Store and spending $39, I'll still have 300 pages of homeschool encouragement to keep me going. Homeschool encouragement that will help me pick myself up, dust off a battered binder, print out a few new planner pages, and and get back on track.

Perhaps that's what I'm looking forward to most of all -- the possibilities to make small improvements that'll make all of our lives run a bit more smoothly.

Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Crew, I wrote this blog post while participating in the The Old Schoolhouse advertising campaign, making me eligible to receive a prize. I received a free copy of the planner to facilitate the writing of this advertisement.


  1. Great ad! I am just here still working on past weeks of the TOS blog walk.....I know, very sad, I am a wee bit behind LOL! I am a new follower of your blog too!

  2. Great job on your ad! Praying you get settled and enjoy your school year.

  3. Sounds just like me! lol I am a little more organized each year using the Schoolhouse Planner though.

  4. Good luck keeping and staying on track! Great job on your ad.

  5. Great AD and congrats on making the top 16!!

  6. I too have high hopes for the planner. Great ad!



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