The things we are doing (or learning to do) seem so novel to us. Homeschooling, frugal living, being family-centered (not running in 100 different directions but putting family first)...heck, even breastfeeding used to feel novel...these things used to just be a way of life. They were normal.
I went to the Abeka materials display today to get Sweetheart's math book. There was a mom sitting at the table with an order form. As soon as I sat down she started asking me questions. Do you use this or that? Have you found this to be helpful? Should I order these? I answered her questions and she quickly got into a conversation with a more experienced homeschool mom so I finished up my business and left. I thought about her later. She was feeling so overwhelmed and like she couldn't possibly be the best teacher for her child. She said everyone around her had been very negative about her decision. Why? Because it's not normal. Normal people just send their kids to school. Or preschool. Right? (Sarcasm here)
If we could just travel back in time and watch a family from long ago operating...I think we would be in shock. Our culture is so very, very different than how things used to be. It's silly to think that parents cannot teach their children. I suspect that most people's concerns are upper level math or science, preparing them for college. etc. Then you have to ask yourself...do they really need to go to college? Why? Ah, I like challenging all this.
I guess my point is, as many of us are preparing to begin the homeschool year, that we don't need all the bells and whistles. Teaching your kids can just be part of life. And don't get all stressed out about pushing them forward with the academics. Their character and faith in the Lord are more important. I'm talking to myself here too.
And don't forget (me too) to ask God what he wants from your family. Ask Him to make your goals clear. We women can get very sidetracked trying to do all manner of really good things for our families and doing none of it well. Our husbands can help in this area too. My husband recently asked me to stop doing laundry at home. Our washer is just horrible and it was taking up all of my time trying to keep up. He went with me to the laundromat Monday night and I have been able to keep on top of all the housework this week since that laundry burden is off my shoulders. So, our husbands really can be helpful--ask them what things they would like you to focus on this year. Most of all, pray.
There is no prize for being "BEST HOMESCHOOLING MOM." There is no medal for "CLEANEST HOUSE." There are no accolades for "MOST AWESOME WIFE EVER." Take the pressure off and lean on the Lord. His goals are the only ones that matter.