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Affording a home education (from the trenches)
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Published: 14 years ago
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Affording a home education (from the trenches)

I don't want people reading your post to think "yeah, Oh's right, we couldn't afford to homeschool, so let's not even explore the thought." I hardly ever cross you, Oh, but in this arena I know what I'm talking about...

A man and his wife who feels called to home educate their children can and WILL find a way to do it. I even know single mothers who do it. Sometimes the family has a home business that they work together, sometimes the father makes a lot of money, and sometimes the family makes great economic sacrifices to do it. I know a couple of instances where Dad teaches and Mom works.

For example, a friend of mine from Oklahoma was a construction worker/general contractor who felt led with his wife to homeschool their oldest of 3 children. The wife began, and while pregnant with baby #4, the husband felt convicted to get totally out of debt, plus felt convicted to honor his parents by caring for them in their old age. They went through the process of selling their large, beautiful home, paying off their mortgage and credit cards with the equity, and cuddling their baby son. Now "owing no man anything but the debt of love," they began looking for a home to rent near my friend's mother's house/land in Central Texas. They rented a house near Mom for 6 months, but when the landlord found out my girlfriend was pregnant with baby #5, he kicked them out, thinking they were Catholic or Mormom (this was back in the day).

Their church had pity on them, and looked around for a suitable place for 7 people to live for cheap, since the father was having trouble finding any contracting jobs in the area. They ended up with a travel trailer (FEMA style). Fortunately, being a carpenter, my friend designed bunk beds for the kids on one side of the little trailer and the master bed"room" on the other side. They moved to my friend's mother's land and used her utility pole for their electricity and her garden hose for water for the trailer. As my girlfriend's pregnancy advanced, she couldn't fit into the little shower in the trailer so she would shower at Granny's next door. They homeschooled outside on a picnic table when it was nice out and indoors on those beds they had reading days when the weather was inclement. My girlfriend said it was a lesson in contentment, resourcefulness and depending solely on God. They didn't always eat what they wanted, but there was always enough to eat, she said.

When it came time to deliver the baby, they used a kind midwife who bartered for her fees. It was a fine baby girl, delivered in the travel trailer behind a curtain. When it came to push out the placenta, out came another little head! :-) Surprise twins. There was a sister! So my friend with intermittent construction jobs had 8 mouths to feed. They put those babies in a drawer for a baby crib.

Long story short, they had 4 more babies after that for a total of 10 kids. Let me tell you, I've never met nicer kids (besides mine). They are all grown now and are doing well. Several have their own businesses. All are very resourceful, creative, optimistic young people, well respected in their community.

So it can be done if you are willing to make the sacrifices. I've never regretted it. Not once.

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