It is a few days before Labor Day weekend and we are on our favorite beach in Florida. Our traditional cherished cabin was not only available to rent, but at a discount because it is now “off season” in Florida. The water is almost bath water warm and the beaches are almost empty. I am incredibly grateful, yet again, to be able to travel during the best times of the year and skip the heat, lines, and crowds. To me, this is one of the major perks of homeschooling.
Gratitude is the one thing that happy people all have in common. It is the key to living a fulfilled life. It is the ability to see what is great in any situation. It also makes all of life a learning experience and not a series of successes and failures. The ability to be grateful recognizes the beautiful and loving things in your life while also opening you up for more. Teaching your kids ways to see things with more grateful eyes is a skill that potentially could change their lives in a massive way.
This week, I was amazed at a wash of gratitude that overcame me when I realized that it was homeschooling that made this experience and many others like it possible in such a perfect way. We are now starting our 16th year as a homeschooling family. It seems somewhere in there I have forgotten that my kids could be in school or college right now. We have enjoyed this free and flexible schedule for so long that I just don’t remember that life is not like this for everyone. As I was floating in the Gulf of Mexico with my family around me, I realized that this freedom to travel during ideal seasons was absolutely something special.
Travel off season
To all of you homeschooling moms: Enjoy and make the best possible use of your ability to create your own yearly schedule. Plan trips during the best weather and visitor off seasons. Take advantage of the discounts and sales during non-peak periods. For example, one of my favorite times of the year to take a family trip is in the first two weeks of May. During the beautiful month of May, many kids of all ages are finishing up school. We, though, have gone to Disney World during this time frame and never waited more than 15 minutes, all while having incredible weather and tons of flowers! We have gone to Europe, Hawaii, as well as explored our own country in these pockets of great weather before and after public school starts.
Look at your schedule this year. Where can you fit in a trip that is perfect in terms of weather and lack of crowds? Expand your school year into the summer so you can take advantage of changing leaves in the fall, snow for skiing in the winter, or to just enjoy spring to its fullest. Don’t forget to add some fun learning along the way. If you schedule it right, you may not to do much make up time after all.
This is one of the major perks of homeschooling! Time to take advantage of it. And don’t forget to be grateful!