We all want to be great homeschool parents. Years ago, I scrolled Pinterest and found beautiful pictures of home “classrooms” full of bright colors and posters. Completely organized. Cute little desks with cute little chairs. Color-coded schedules on the wall. Everyone is well-dressed like they’re going to a staff meeting. Hair brushed. Teeth clean and shiny. Everything looks perfect.
Perfection! Yes! This is going to be me! This is going to be us!
Ha! Fast forward 6 years, and I have learned a lot. I am not perfection. I am not even close. We are not those people. Hey, if you are, that’s great. I am proud of you. And I am proud of you if you are not.
5 Things You Need for Homeschool Perfection
To make sure we meet the stereotypes, we’ve got goals around here. I decided to embrace the weird and the unsocialized. My kids have me as a mom, so weird was going to happen anyway! If you want to be a part of this exclusive club, here are 5 things you need for homeschool perfection.
#1 JAMMIES, JAMMIES, JAMMIES
You need jammies. Lots of jammies. However, you need home jammies and outside world jammies.
Home jammies may be your kids’ favorite ones that you are sick of looking at for goodness’ sake! Too small (or too big). A little ratty. But they LOVE them and only want to sleep in those hideous jammies you wish you could burn in the fire pit.
Outside world jammies are comfy but a little nicer. So, when you announce you have to run to the corner store because the kids used up all your cornstarch on a failed art project, they look presentable. Granted they may be insist on wearing snow boots in the summer, but they are at least dressed and have shoes on their feet.
#2 DRY SHAMPOO
Find a brand you like and buy it all. Buy stock in the company. It will save you more than once when desperate times call for desperate measures.
You have an appointment. Everyone is up and dressed in real clothes. GASP! You look at the time, and a shower is out for you. One or more kid’s hair is questionable. Dry shampoo to the rescue. Spray, brush, and out the door. We are socializing today, and our hair will smell like a field of flowers on a spring morning.
#3 DISPOSABLE TOOTHBRUSHES
I don’t know which company started this, but I am sure it was invented by a parent. Buy disposable toothbrushes (They come pre-pasted with toothpaste!) and keep them in your bag. At least one kid is going to say, “Yes! I brushed my teeth.” But, after you’ve walked out the door and it’s too late to turn back, the child-who-cannot-be-mentioned-for-fear-of-lifelong-embarrassment will breathe dragon breath on you–therefore proving his or her earlier statement was less than honest. This child may have even left “evidence” in the bathroom that toothbrushing was accomplished, but it is obvious to everyone that the child chose and brushed only one tooth. Not a great way to walk into an appointment!
Keep an environmentally friendly soap on hand. It can be liquid or bar. Your choice.
“Hey, mom, can we play in the rain?”
“Hey, mom, can we play in the creek?”
“Hey, mom, can we play in the garden hose?”
“Yes, but take this soap with you and bathe while you do it.”
BOOM!!! They had a bath. How easy was that?
#5 EVERYTHING IS LAVA WHEN THE DOORBELL RINGS
It is Thursday morning at 10 AM, and the doorbell rings. Why? We are knee-deep in grammar or science and in our home jammies. My hair is crazy and my coffee is cold. Is it a salesman or the nosy relative who likes to arrive unannounced to make sure we are actually doing school?
Everyone has to be quiet as a church mouse. The mysterious visitor will go away if we are silent. Totally silent. So, don’t move or breathe or make a sound, or LAVA will get you! Make it a game. A very important game. No judgment today from people who don’t embrace our lifestyle.
It’s awesome to be magazine-worthy every day. It’s also awesome not to be. You do you, and keep on being weird and unsocialized! After all, we are raising world changers.
Jaime Lester Green is a wife and homeschool mom of 2 amazing children–a high school senior and an 8th grader. Loves all things science, is a NASA nerd and space geek, is addicted to crafting, and has way too many books (mostly crime novels and – you guessed it- science and space related).