Our First Week of Homeschooling

I cannot believe our first week of school is complete! After preparing myself for months, it all came down to Tuesday September 4th. I have pretty much solidified our schedule so that we wouldn’t have to scramble on what to do on the morning of. On the first day, I woke up at about 6 in excitement for the day. I reviewed our schedule, started breakfast, and sat myself down for my own personal meditation/bible time. This time has proven very useful, especially since I’ve noticed I wake up everyday with that same first day excitement and need to calm down before the kids wake. Since I chose our curriculum before we started, you can read about that here , I basically had our whole day planned out for us.

Heres a look at our first day of homeschooling!

The day went fabulously! We have been having so much fun learning and exploring together. While some of our day does resemble school quite a bit, I noticed over the summer that the lack of structure would have been way to much to continue and school through. I’m learning so much about my children that I didn’t get to experience because Kay was in public school. The most noticeable change was adding more household chores to Kays daily schedule. The only way I could see housework and school being completed was if I got more help with housework. Simply giving her a little bit more responsibility has taken a great load off of me which id like to say helps me get it all done better.

Overall the first week went very well. We covered all subjects with minimal objections. And would you believe it if I told you 3 out of the 4 days, we finished school BEFORE 12 noon! I’ts absolutely insane how much we can get done in such a short amount of time and that’s with us taking our time and not rushing at all! The Easy Peasy curriculum has been a dream. It is so easy to access and the work load is not too much that Kay feels like it can’t be done. I’ve seen a confidence in Kay I’ve never been able to see and this is what homeschooling was about for me. To grow closer to my babes, help them develop and grow their relationship with God, and to help mold them into great people.

Have you ever thought about homeschooling your children? What is a typical homeschool day like for you all?

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How We Deschool

Deschooling is to abolish or phase out traditional schools from, so as to replace them with alternative methods and forms of education(Dictionary)


When we began to research homeschooling methods and terminology, it was definitely apparent that we needed to deschool. While my youngest (2) will have the benefits of being homeschooled from the very beginning, my oldest (6) has already attended pre-k and kindergarten in the public school setting. One of the most appealing things about homeschooling is the flexibility. We don’t have to sit at a table or desk for 8 + hours to really learn something. And one thing I want to be sure of is that I’m not trying to replicate school at home. I’ve read article after article and blog after blog on how detrimental having “school at home” can be.

Our methods to deschool have been so simple. While I hate to say it because it sounds a bit cliché, playing is the best form of learning when dealing with elementary aged kids. These are a few of the fun, but educational, things we’ve been up to to deschool and prepare for our first actual homeschool year!

  • Math:Counting, adding, and subtracting toys
  • – how to still get math in without starting an actual curriculum? Let your kids play, ask how many dolls, trucks etc they have if you take ___ away. It’s simple and my youngest still kinda gets a lesson in just listening and playing nearby or with us!
    • Science: Helping cook, making slime, melting ice, boiling eggs

    -my oldest loves to help me cook. Following a recipe helps with starting to look at measurements. Making slime has been something my daughter has been super interested in. It helps with measuring again but also the fun of seeing how the ingredients change from liquid to slime has been interesting to explain! Melting ice and boiling eggs also show how the elements can change based on temperature, and the kids love boiled eggs so it makes for a good snack after.

    • Reading: library and read alouds
  • -pretty self explanatory. We go to the library weekly to play and read and check out new books. Every night I read a chapter from whatever book we are reading to my oldest. We are currently reading Animal Ark book series. My son picks up books throughout the day and asks me to read to him. So everyone gets some reading in.
    • Character building: Bible + real life

    – right now we are reading through a children’s devotional that I try my best to read daily to them. We also try to pick books that send a message. We are also getting a little real life lessons from helping my dad around the house while he recovers from a leg injury.

    • Responsibilities: Chores
  • – I’m in the process of setting up weekly and daily age appropriate chores for the babies, but for now my daughter is in charge of feeding the cat and my son is helping with cleaning up throughout the day.
  • We are set to start our school year September 4th so we still have quite a bit of deschooling ahead of us. We will continue to learn through play and just slowly incorporate our actual curriculum, Easy Peasy All-In-One Homeschool, closer to our start date. Until then, fun learning!
  • How has your family deschooled? Or, do you just jump into the school year?
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  • My experience as an ItWorks Distributor

    Hey babes! So today I’m finally writing this post that has been long overdue. I was unsure on how to approach writing this post so I decided to start with a disclaimer.

    The information in this post is what was given/taught to me. It is strictly my own experience as that’s all I can speak on. Other people have other experiences. This is mine. This post isn’t to bash any one or brand, but to share my experience.

    Now that we have that out of the way lets jump in!

    The Beginning

    I, like many other people, have been bombarded with direct marketing recruitment pretty much since the beginning of having social media. I typically would just block whoever and move about my day. Lets start my experience at about 3-4 years ago. That was my first time having a personal relationship with someone who participated in direct marketing. My fiance’s coworker has her own business with the company itWorks. For quiet sometime she’d ask my fiance and I about trying some of her products or me actually becoming a distributor and I’ll be honest, we were not interested AT ALL. I have had my own thoughts on direct marketing which include:

    1. I’ts a scam
    2. The recruiters are typically super annoying and very invasive

    I’ve always come across people in the blogging community that have direct sales side bizzes and I’m honestly amazed by how many people I see rocking it! After having several conversations with my fiance on what to do as far as the constant itWorks conversations between ourselves and his coworker I took it upon myself to reach out to a few bloggers I had already on my Instagram to ask them for their experiences as far as the products as well as actually being a distributor. Everyone was super sweet of course, but something I picked up on right away was feeling like they weren’t REALLY answering my questions. Everyone I reached out to made it seem like they were holding on to the Krabby Patty formula! I kind of understood at first, seeing as though this is their BUSINESS I know no one wants to go around giving out free access to how they are making their income…i guess. I just felt like asking what their thoughts are on their company NOW as apposed to when they started wasn’t asking for much.

    After getting seriously little to no information I decided to try the products. The first thing that I found super off about the company? You have to buy  for three consecutive months to get the lifetime “discount”. I still can’t wrap my mind why I’d have to buy something 3 months in a row that I don’t know if I’ll like, don’t know if i’ll have a reaction to just don’t know anything about. While yes you can switch out the products every month, what if you only had interest in one product and it didn’t work out for you? Well you’ll be automatically charged for the product and if you cancel your 3 month subscription? You’ll be charged the price of the product PLUS a $50 fee! Like WHAT?! The next thing that didn’t add up? The lifetime discount. 

    I was mainly interested in the HSN (hair skin and nail vitamins) especially since I had just big chopped my hair for hopefully the last time, so that was what I wanted to try as my first product. The vitamins are $33 for one month of product using the lifetime discount. When you purchase from ItWorks, you have to sign up for the 3 months OR pay a $50 membership fee for automatic lifetime discount. I mean you can see where I’m going with this right? $33×3. $99+ for three months of hair vitamins I may not even like!! It was automatically a no go for me. The HSN is $55 WITHOUT the membership! Do you see where I’m going?! It’s insane!!! I was taking a $10 vitamin from Walmart and was honestly doing just fine.

    My fiancé’s coworker would check in to see if I was still interested and I was so turned off by the price I just couldn’t bare to tell her that. So when ItWorks was having a sale for the HSN I went ahead and made my first purchase. Shipping was pretty fast, it was nicely packaged for shipment so I was super excited. The first month using HSN my hair grew a little over an inch which was nice. And it helped with my postpartum hair thinning.

    So let’s fast forward to the second month. At this point I was automatically charged the $33 as I signed up as apart of the 3 month challenge to avoid the $50 charge. At this point I was interested in the business part only because as a SAHM any extra income is definitely a plus. So I signed as a distributor.

    The process for signing up is simple. I was super excited to be doing something that could potentially add a little extra income to our household. It’s $99 + for the distributor kit which at the time included a package of their infamous wraps which are $99 without the discount and $59 with the discount, mini defining gel samples, fab wrap( which only holds the wraps in place), and a ton of marketing flyers. You also got the first month of your website for free($20 after the first month)!

    What wasn’t disclosed prior to me signing up, was what exactly I had to do.

    The Fees

    So as I mentioned before, the website was $20 a month. Not bad but it’s not a customized website. It just simply has your name on it. In order to see any income, you have to sell $150 worth of products OR run an autoship of 80 bv (essentially $100 worth of products a month). If you know me, you know I don’t just spend spend spend. If I need it or I know I’ll be using it I’ll purchase.

    The Work

    My “training” was included in my website it seemed good but didn’t describe in enough detail TO ME what I was supposed to be doing. My team met via Zoom a digital conference and basically I was told to send out x amount of messages to all of my family and friends asking them to support. For one my family wouldn’t be interested and I knew that and friends?! I have two. And they did support which I’m super grateful for. The next steps were to add x amount of people daily on social media, send them x amount of messages and keep “checking up” on wether they were going to purchase or not. The same thing I was SO annoyed about with direct marketing was what I was supposed to be doing. I did at first. But after about a week I was getting annoyed with myself. I reached out to my ” team” to ask for better strategies on reaching clients but they only told me to continue what I was doing. Which to me didn’t make sense. It’s not me. I’m not the type of person to bombard you with messages. I’m just not.

    So I stopped. I didn’t attend the “meetings ” I didn’t message people I just didn’t. I tried to reach out to other bloggers who I thought would help me but just as before they were tight lipped and didn’t want to help because I wasn’t “under” them. There’s a rank system and because I wasn’t apart of their team people would literally delete me, unlike my pictures, and block me. Yes you read that right. I’ve always supported people in direct sales by liking their pictures and supporting their content because I like to. I like to genuinely show support. But I was learning fast that once you’re apart of the business people only see you as competition. I was seriously confused and upset over how many people I’ve supported over time that we’re just deleting and blocking me over the fact I wasn’t on their team.

    The End

    I slowly started showing the ItWorks products less and less and eventually stopped using them all together. Over the months I had spent roughly $500 and only saw maybe $100 income. In my personal opinion it just wasn’t worth it. And to top that off, it left such an ugly taste in my mouth that I joined something to Conner with other moms in the business just for people to not even attempt to be nice to me. I felt used as well as when I made my concerns known to my “team” letting them know I was done I didn’t get the same feeling anymore. It went from them messaging me daily to see how I was and my family to no communication almost at all. So I distanced myself. I deleted a lot of people and cleared what I felt was toxic energy.

    While many people have great experiences with the company I wasn’t one of them. And I don’t foresee myself trying to build my business again but if I do I’ll definitely contain myself. I don’t want that same energy around me this time.

    Have you tried any ItWorks products? What was your experience?

    Till next time! 💜

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    Diary Entry #2: I’m Doing my Thing

    For just about my entire middle and high school career I was so sure that I wanted to be between a veterinarian or a hairdresser. I shadowed a veterinarian and loved every minute, but realistically I know I wouldn’t be able to handle the hard stuff. Having to tell someone that we needed to put their fur baby down or having an animal come in that simply didn’t survive whatever procedures needed would literally kill me! I’m a huge softy and animals for sure have my heart. That left me with becoming a hairstylist and of course one day owning my own hair salon.

    I worked hard through my pregnancy with my daughter to finish cosmetology school and went on to earn my cosmetology license! I thought for sure that was the start of what I’d be doing for forever. My first actual salon job killed that dream for me. Working in the field and being in school was so different. People were mean. And as someone who wears my feelings on my sleeves I kinda decided if that was for me I’d get used to it with time. I came home everyday upset. I hated doing hair. So I packed up my hairstylist dreams and tried to figure out what my “thing” was.

    It seems like everyone has a “thing” some people are great with people, others great with children, making sales, being super creative, the list can go on and on. But, I always wondered what my “thing” is. What is it that I’m meant to do. What is my passion ? I shared in a blog post earlier about finding my passion as a stay at home mom , and that post still stands. I wanted to come today and solidify for anyone that doesn’t have a thing. That you are more than likely doing your thing.

    I had a conversation today, that sparked this post with a homeschool mom I met at the park. And what she said was so simple but it’s just stuck with me.

    “… I came to a place where working and homemaking was crashing together. I needed to either be home, with my children or be in the workplace. My family was more important than any paycheck and we are doing better than ever.”

    I’ve struggled with my decision to be a stay at home mom for a very long time. I have felt useless, overwhelmed, and stressed out. But I’ve also felt accomplished, loved, and true happiness. I’ve tried to start businesses and other side jobs in an attempt to earn a little something to help contribute, but in all honesty they’ve all been a bust. I’ll speak more on my experience with ItWorks in another post. When I divide my focus up too much I fall behind with housework I start feeling like I’m neglecting my children and it shouldn’t be like that.

    With this being our first year of homeschooling I’m taking the time to focus, to plan ahead for a change, to make myself a priority, and to focus on my passion projects whatever they may be. This blog and my YouTube channel are projects I’ve tried to dive head first into instead of taking the time to develop a plan and an actual focus for them.

    This is my “thing”. Well for now anyhow. Right now my heart is invested into my children, myself, my fiancé, and my passion projects.

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    Unpopular Opinions: Why I Deleted Social Media for a Relationship

    I guess after reading the title of this post you either think I’m completely crazy or you are kinda intrigued by an opinion that doesn’t necessarily follow the norms of society. I’ve seen tweet after tweet and post after post about how it’s “unhealthy ” to delete social media for a relationship. And how “weak” you must be if you feel like you even need to. Well today I’m here to share my story, and to let you know it’s not always an unhealthy decision. And I certainly didn’t feel weak after deleting.



    So let’s take it back to the beginning of my relationship with my fiancé. I’ve shared small windows into my relationship on my YouTube channel in my video titled Mini Girlfriend/Boyfriend Tag. In that video I mentioned how me and my fiancé hardly if ever argue and fight, that wasn’t always true in our relationship. We went through a very rough patch in the beginning of my relationship where I struggled very hard to trust and seriously open up to Reece (my fiancé). I was so damaged from previous relationships and I unfortunately never sought out to address those issues before I had entered our relationship. I always felt like there was someone else, I was constantly accusing and harassing him over who he was talking to and what he was doing, it was seriously damaging our bond we worked so hard to develop.

    The solution

    Because I was worried about who he was talking to, obviously his social media was a huge stress to me. Stressing over who’s pictures he was liking, what he was commenting on. I was a complete mess. Would you believe it if I told you we’ve probably blocked and unblocked each other a million times! We were seriously in trouble. Until one of us (I honestly don’t remember who’s idea it was) decided enough was enough and boom, instagram deleted. At the time I wasn’t blogging or on YouTube so the numbers didn’t have an effect on me. It was the simple fact I had FOMO(fear of missing out). When we took away what was causing the majority of the problems and worked on our relationship things got better. I wasn’t worried about who or what he was doing because seeing he cared enough about me and my insecurities to put his entertainment aside and focus on me made me want to “get better”. I focused more on myself we built the indestructible relationship we have to this day. While yes I still have insecurities I no longer stress about who or what he’s doing. Taking time away from the world to focus a little more on us was the best thing we could have possibly done.

    Conclusion

    We live in a time where social media and just the digital world in general has the power to eat you alive. There are so many people who are literally only on the internet to see you upset. But I’ve Aldo found that having a “healthy feed” ( away from negativity and drama) is healthy. I actively follow pages that make me happy now and I’d like to think Reece does too. Taking out break from social media made us address our issues with each other instead of subtweeting and just not talking at all. Social media can be very toxic in relationships and I think that’s important to know. We’d like to think that “of you worry about social media than it’s something wrong with you” and that’s not true. There are people who get jobs based off of social media, people that meet their SO on social media. I don’t think I’d even know Reece right now if it wasn’t for Twitter back in the day Haha!

    Social media in healthy doses is not a terrible thing. And deleting social media to focus on what’s right in front of you isn’t a bad thing either. We are and have been in our best state relationship wise, simply because we stepped away and took the time to really focus on each other away from the temptations of the internet. It’s so easy to ignore a call and subtweet or bash them online and I was so tired of that cycle.

    What are your thoughts on deleting social media for a relationship?

    Keep in touch!

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    May Favorites: Beauty Edition

    While May maybe over June is here with a fresh start! I’m sharing my May beauty faves today! It’s been so long since I’ve done a favorites post in general so bare with me while I keep today’s simple and to the point.


    Last month, I found myself reaching for three products in particular! I first couldn’t stop picking up the NYX Illuminating primer. I believe I mentioned it briefly in my Go To Summer Makeup Routine post. I’ve been living for this primer! It’s lightweight and gives the best healthy glow! While a con for my fellow WOC would be the white cast it leaves on bare skin, I’d love to add that under my powder foundation it’s beautiful! I found that when I used this primer with my regular liquid foundation, it gave a gray like undertone that was super annoying. But after playing around with it, under my powder foundation worked best.

    Next is this Kush Mascara by Milk Makeup! Can you say can’t live without?! I received this mascara complimentary from Influenster for testing and I absolutely fell in LOVE! The mascara is cannabis oil infused and has cool heart shaped fibers to latch on to your lashes and really make them stand out! I posted a video of my initial review on my YouTube channel .


    Last but not least is the Kandy4Beauty Joyful pallet. I was asked by this company to work with them and to promote their brand. While the business side of working with this company hasn’t been the best, I will say I’ve really been enjoying this pallet. I used it in a GRWM on my channel and did swatches for instagram and was really impressed with the quality! They were kind enough to give me a discount code for my followers! You can use code ‘ melalynn ‘ to save money with Kandy4Beauty !


    What have been some of your favorite products?

    Keep in touch! Xx

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    June Bullet Journal Set Up

    I’ve officially begun preparing myself to bullet journal again! If you’ve been following my journey on my past blogs, you know that I have a love hate relationship with bullet journaling. Some days it was so easy to wake up, review my bullet journal and go on with my day. But when life got hectic with us moving and school starting back up, I lost my motivation to journal. So with the homeschool year just a few months away I thought this would be the perfect time to start getting more organized and buckle down with my journal! Today I’m sharing my June set up!


    This journal was from TJ Max for about $4.00! While it may not be the journal typically used for bullet journaling, I found that it works just as well and gave me enough space to fit what I needed


    Read aloud book list

    I didn’t start my journal with a key and index. I figured come January I’d want to migrate to a new journal so that I can have one notebook for 2018 and a separate one for 2019. Instead, I started my journal with a read aloud book list. As we go through the books, I’ll simply cross them out or make boxes and check the boxes off.


    Month at a glance & goals

    Second, we have my month at a glance. It’s not super pretty or super decorated. I’m no artist haha! But I do plan to glue some decorative photos soon enough. I simply wrote the month in the center of the page and the dates in a straight line down and wrote in any important dates and highlighted them.

    I decorated the pages with this rainbow washi tape from the thrift store.

    The bottom of the page I separated out for my monthly goals. This month I kept everything super simple since it’s my first spread back.


    Trackers

    The next page is dedicated to my tracker for the month. I’ll simply put a dot when I fill it in and connect the dots as I go creating a line graph. The habits this month are simple things just to get back into the groove of tracking. I’m tracking my water intake, when I wake up at 5:30, drinking my ACV drink and how often I’m reading the Bible.


    Stats and Posts

    The next section is to keep track of my blog and YouTube posts and post ideas as well as my YouTube stats. I think it will be pretty cool to look back and see the growth in the future!


    Summer Bucket List

    I plan on writing things down that I want to do this summer and marking them off as we accomplish them.


    Weekly Spread

    Last but not least is my weekly spread. Again very simple. I’ve just marked down the same events from my month at a glance on their perspective days.


    That’s my June spread so far! Do you keep a bullet journal? Let me know below!


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