Saturday, November 23, 2019

Thankful for Work - Living the Good Life

Not too long ago, an assumption was made that I don’t work full time. I couldn’t decide if I should take offense or take pleasure in the fact that there is a lack of understanding about my work life as it doesn’t fit our cultural norm. I know someday this schedule of mine will be long gone as my kids will eventually graduate out, and I’ll need to take full time work outside these four walls called home. With that thought in mind, I've been sincerely grateful for this season of life. I know its just a slice of time. I decided to document it in detail to be able to capture these times and bring understanding that work can take lots of different shapes and be fruitful.

Currently, I hold three jobs. The first and most important is home educator. I’ve been extremely blessed to be able to educate my children. Each year our institution gets better and better and better. I do feel bad for my first student, LOL! But you have to start somewhere and know God is at work even in our deficiencies. I currently spend about 18-20 hours a week as a home educator. I've taught Time Management, Bible, Math, Latin, Logic, Science, History, Economics, Reading, Writing, Government, Shakespeare, Music, and much much more.... with no pay. No one compensates me to set up our classroom. I don’t get paid for continuing education or even for my time teaching. No one covers for our curriculum costs either. It’s a hard road to take, but the benefits outweigh the financial deficiencies. I’m soooooooo thankful for a husband who works hard to support this adventure.

(Random Homeschooling photos throughout the years)

To supplement our income and utilize my giftings, I work as an Area Representative for a home education company called Classical Conversations. I put in around 15-20 satellite hours a week. I love being able to go to work with or without a bra. Haha! I oversee/support a beautiful team of 11 regional leaders who oversee/support a team of 83 local leaders who oversee/support 594 families who are home educating in my area. Guys, this is no joke of a job! In 2020, we will offer EIGHT 3-day home education conferences in my region this year starting in April and finishing off in July. These conferences need speakers, coordinators, childcare workers, and volunteers as well as financial oversight and administrative execution. We also deal with sales and services, which I love this line of work, and I love serving people who have a passion for home education.

(Below: Team TX at our annual forum in November. On top- my awesome team)

Lastly, I work as a tutor for a local Classical Conversations community for the 8th grade group. This year, I serve 7 students from 7 different families. This is about a 10-12 hour a week job as I partner with these families to prepare, communicate, lead, and equip academically. We have so much fun once a week discussing big ideas, wrapping our minds around syllogisms, composing papers and readying for other rhetorical opportunities. Next semester we will ready ourselves for a Mock Trial. Just for some perspective, I lead one of the 925 8th grade groups in the world. Our organization is international and there is a group for every oldest is in a 9th grade group with a tutor, and my youngest is in a 7th grade group. In all, there are a total of 8,049 groups in the world. I plan to tutor one more year in 2020 and then hope to replace these hours with school as I want to pursue my own education.

(My current class showing off an astronomy project)

Minimally, I’m putting in 42 hours a week on work and I love every single bit of it...most the time. There are alot of 50+ hour work weeks, which can be a little stressful as I’m still a wife, mom, daughter, Momma T- who has family, home, church, and sports obligations. I manage these things with clear margins, a tight schedule, and a graceful husband who helps make the hard weeks manageable. We have also been blessed with supportive grandparents who have filled in the gaps, helped financially, and cheered us on as we home educate. I cannot thank enough the homeschooling community who has labored alongside us. There is nothing sweeter. 

I count each and every one of these things as blessings. I'm living the good life.... to live simply, work diligently, and give generously.