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Homeschoolers on Vacation: Three Pack-and-Plays and a Drawer

Our annual beach vacation has grown by numbers, traditions, and size of rental houses. This year we rented a 6 bedroom house on the beach with a pool. The house was certainly the nicest one yet, but I was able to negotiate a great deal because it was in mid-October.

Traditions which have served us well over the years include dividing the meals up with each couple cooking supper once for the whole group, boogie-boarding, thrift store shopping, and creating a short film to turn into Good Morning America’s “Your Three Words” segment. This year we had four different smaller vehicles, so we were unable to continue a tradition of our own version of “Cash Cab” en route to our favorite restaurant. Because of the age of the babies, we were unable to have our annual couples’ tennis tournament, so we just played some games and let kiddoes run instead.

This year we had 15 of us because we took my niece to help with all the babies (5, 2, 17 months, and two, 4-month-olds). Two of the moms with little ones brought their Pack-and-Plays, but because of limited packing room, the mom of one of the 4-month-olds let him sleep for a week in a dresser drawer lined with pillows. He did phenomenally! I truly love my daughter-in-law’s creativity and flexibility! Until we are forced to create solutions, we tend to assume we need more.

I love the simplicity of “making do or doing without”. Before any family endures financial hardship or worse, goes into debt for curricula, they need to re-evaluate the message they are conveying to their children. Because most of us are one income families, we had better be in the mode of making wise financial decisions. If you are feeling pressured to buy into expensive teaching materials, seek counsel from an older homeschooling mom. There are so many creative different methods which do not revolve around textbooks and workbooks. YOU are the master of your curricula, NOT the other way around.

I mentioned the omitted traditions as an example of what had been ideal in years past—which for one reason or another did NOT work this year. And you know what? We still ALL had a great time! This can hold true for books, teaching methods, and groups or co-ops. If it is not effective for you any one year, relax, LET IT GO, and choose something else—like a dresser drawer! ☺