Homeschooling: It's not what we do, it's how we live.


I’d love to hear from you!

Contact me via email at: or reply below.

**I used to keep this post fairly up-to-date, but it’s been a while (2011). I don’t know what’s more ‘faithful’; to go in and change details to reflect our current reality, or to make notes to mark the changes, so I use a mixture of both.**

Who am I?

I am just your average geeky, kinda goth-ish, slightly crunchy AP homeschooling wife and mom. I never thought I would be, but it turns out that I was/am one of ‘those’ moms – you know, the kind who have their babies with midwives and dream about waterbirth, the kind who breastfed for years (in public!) and made their own baby food and cloth diapers, and wore their babies in a sling; the kind who doesn’t vaccinate (*didn’t at the time; my views have changed since this was written originally) and prefers natural remedies to seeing the doctor (which is still true for many things). Even though my ‘babies’ are older, I’m still a natural childbirth advocate, passionate lactivist and (former) breastfeeding educator, (former) playgroup-co-organizer, and homeschool support group administrator. Past occupations include being a PTO/soccer mom, doula (professional childbirth assistant)  & non-profit women’s organization co-director, breastfeeding educator & peer support group leader.

I’m the type who loves prim and proper Elizabethan clothes and haute couture on the internet but lives in jeans and black tee shirts black leggings, flowy black tops and combat boots; I (still) adore Marilyn Manson, my laptop (changed out for a great big dual-monitor desktop computer/control center which I would not trade for the world) and all my little handheld-techno-gizmos, and writing computer code learning languages just for fun. I have been into vampires since way before the kind that sparkle came out of the coffin, and reading and writing books while drinking coffee in copious quantities is my personal idea of heaven.

As a family, we’re what we like to call ‘alternatively faithed’. We subscribe to an eclectic mix of beliefs and philosophies, which means that we don’t fit in with the typical church crowd. We live in the South, so by and far, that means Fundamentalist Christian (and similar) churches. For homeschooling purposes, we define ourselves as ‘secular’ (meaning that we don’t use a faith-based curriculum). We do insert our own beliefs into our schooling, but as they differ from the majority, and since I don’t generally post about religious materials, I think I fall into the ‘secular homeschooling’ category as far as this blog is concerned. We’re teaching and have taught our children about all religions and spiritual paths from an academic standpoint with an eye towards educating them on the practices and beliefs that have and do shape our world while allowing them the freedom to find and encouraging them to follow their own spiritual paths.  In our home, we follow the seasons and celebrate where we are moved to do so.

But don’t worry, just because those are the things I’m into and things that we do and believe, that doesn’t mean that my black is blacker than yours (it totally is), or that I won’t let you have a juice box from my cooler (provided you don’t have cooties or Stepford children). I kid; of course your Stepford kids can have a juice box.

As for the rest of my horde, my dh is a techno-geek as well and is our resident computer/internet/video game fixer. I’d say more but there’s an old saying about not ‘advertising’ your man. Suffice it to say, we’re happy. We have a history together that spans more than a quarter of a is coming up on half a century, and we’re well on our way to raising have happily contributed to the next generation of geeks, too.

We have two Heathen children – LittleBoyBlue (often called LBB) is 10, in 4th grade and is a budding manga/comic book artist. His interests stick to the visual arts realm, though he’s discovering that stories don’t always have to have pictures to be interesting. In a world of amazing kids, this one goes to 11. He’s hyper-focused on whatever he’s doing and can probably administer a sound thrashing in any video game you get conned into playing with him. ** I have chosen to leave this paragraph in tact as it was written and provide an update: as of June 2020, LBB has completed high school and received his diploma. He says he is kinda done with school for now, so his plans are to work and save money while he figures out what his next move will be.**

Our youngest, PeaGreen, is 8.5 years old and rocking the third-grade world with his extreme enthusiasm for all things construction or invention-related. Currently, he is obsessed with construction toys – namely Legos, Magnetix, UberTropolis and plain ol’ building blocks. He’s way into video games as well, but his skills as an engineer are what sets this kiddo apart. Inside, outside or upside down, he will build it big and you will be amazed. Our science fair this year introduced him to the scientific method, so experimenting is his new passion. If it explodes, well, that’s even yesser. **Again; leaving this paragraph as it was written and providing an update: as of June 2020, PG will enter his senior year this fall. He started building and repairing guitars a few years ago and is hoping to make a career of that. He is considering dual credit enrollment this fall, but hasn’t made any firm decisions as of this writing.**

We also have an angel baby that would have turned 10 in Dec. 2019. We miss him terribly and he is never far from our thoughts. **I simply updated this – when I started this blog, this loss was still quite fresh. It’s been a long time now, and the grief is not as new, or as painful as it was when I wrote this. I can’t imagine having a ten-year-old running around now!**

Fall 2020 will bring us into our final year of homeschooling; January 2020 marked ten full years of homeschooling adventures.  Along the way, I think we’ve tried every homeschooling fad; every kind of schedule; it’s been a really crazy/fun/interesting journey and I am so honored and privileged and grateful to have been able to spend this time with my kids. Our last year will no doubt be bittersweet; full of happy memories and excitement about future things.

Why blog? (**This section remains in tact as it was written originally; see below for updated info.**)

I guess that has to do with change. We’d been making some changes in our family; we lost a baby, we bought our house, we started homeschooling and it seemed like a good time for something new. I’ve always kept diaries and blogged for a long time of MySpace and LiveJournal. Starting a new adventure seemed to call for a new space to talk about it and so ThisAdventureLife was born in January of 2010.

One thing I have learned on my journey as a mom is that the network of support you build around yourself is vital to reaching the mothering goals you strive to meet. I have learned so much from the mamas out there who share their experiences and lives in blog format, and so if my thoughts and experiences can help another mama on her journey, or at the very least reach someone who is struggling with similar thoughts, then I will have accomplished the ‘something’ that I set out to do.

And though I am assured that this is  not the case (because all of my friends are constantly in various states of bliss at the awesome that falls from my lips every time I open my mouth), there’s also the fact that the people around me IRL are sick to death of hearing me talk about this stuff. {wink}

Update (July 2020): Most of that is still pretty much accurate. We did have a lot of changes all at once, and starting to homeschool just fit in with all that for a better direction for our family. It worked out. We’ve weathered some pretty big additional changes and challenges and struggles over the years, including deaths in the family, Hurricane Harvey (we flooded; it took 2 years to get our house back to ‘normal’) and mental health struggles and a suicide attempt with one of our kids. But we’ve come through all of it stronger, and I believe that both documenting and sharing those struggles is important for myself (because I have a terrible memory); for my kids (so they have a record from my viewpoint of their childhood), and so that other parents might find something that helps them in what we’ve been through. So, still – I blog. I don’t know how much I will update once PG graduates next year, but I don’t plan on archiving this blog, so it will still be available. Maybe with updates here and there. We’ll see. 

Why the dark background?

Well, as previously mentioned… kinda goth here. I’m not really much of a bright colors kind of girl. I’ve only ever gotten 2 comments about the layout and color choices, but I thought I’d address it here anyway.

As for why, Maddox said it best:

“I’ve chosen a black background for most of my text because it’s easier on the eyes than staring at a white screen. Think about it: your monitor is not a piece of paper, no matter how hard you try to make it one. Staring at a white background while you read is like staring at a light bulb (don’t believe me? Try turning off the lights next time you use a word processor). Would you stare at a light bulb for hours at a time? Not if you want to keep your vision.”

I read that years ago and it stuck; virtually all of my sites use a darker background. I like them that way. If it’s hard for you to read, you might try increasing the magnification of the page (hold down the ‘control’ button and press the plus sign), or you can hold down ‘control’ and press A to highlight the entire page (which will make it blue and white).

**This is still 100% accurate. I stand by it to this day. I use dark mode when it’s available and enable dark mode extensions and filters when it’s not. Seriously – don’t stare at a white screen all the time; you’ll ruin your vision.**

Why “This Adventure Life”?

I think that life should be an adventure – it IS an adventure. I want my children to grow up with childhood memories of creative learning, a strong sense of family and the necessary tools to be successful in their lives. I also want them to have dreams and goals and a supportive foundation to build upon to reach them.



LBB & PG – 2010


LBB & PeaGreen – 2019

May 22, 2010

May 2010



July 2010 – This was the original picture of myself I had on this page since it was posted.


July 2020 – Ten years older and a bit more blonde. Cheers!


And because I said I would put it here, my post Because Smrt Mama Said To, to remind myself of why I am amazing, beautiful and accomplished.
More Questions? Leave a comment!

(**SmrtLernins was an *excellent* blog that went dark several years ago. That was the origin of the ‘secular Thursday’ tags that are on many of my older posts. Though the blog is gone, the concept was always a good idea to me, so I still use it when I feel the need. If you’re still out there, SmrtMama, hope you’re doing well. I’d love to hear from you!)

17 responses

  1. Hi! My name is Kerry, and I am the administrator of a website for secular homeschoolers called “”. (

    This site is a combination social network, forum, and resource site. We have articles about secular homeschooling, news items, a Twitter feed, a Facebook page, a forum, a blog, and a host of ways for members to connect and share their experiences.

    I was wondering if you would take a minute today to check out the site and see what you think. We are growing by several new members each week, and we would love to have you join us. (We’re also getting ready for a big site makeover!!)

    One of the newest resources we are working on is a list of secular homeschool bloggers. We are offering this list as a resource for our members so they can find and follow quality blogs by secular homeschoolers. A running digest of the most recent posts from each of these blogs is on the homepage. If you would be willing to have your blog listed on our resource page and in the digest, could you respond to this message via email and let me know? (

    Also, if you visit and enjoy the site, we would appreciate it if you might consider adding our button to your sidebar (code is on the homepage of the website), so that your blog visitors might find out about us as well.

    Thanks for your time, and I sure hope to see you at!

    Kerry Jones
    aka: Topsy
    Site Admin

    March 8, 2010 at 9:19 am

  2. Hiya — I found your blog through Secular Homeschool and I just wanted to let you know I thoroughly enjoyed what I read. I wish I could be so candid on my blog but hey, I have to go to the grocery store and run into people! Why didn’t I just go anonymous right from the beginning? Hm. You made a good choice. But anyway, just a note to say keep it up, enjoy homeschooling, etc.


    July 31, 2010 at 9:35 pm

  3. Hi Suki!
    Thanks for the encouragement. I’ve found blogging to be pretty cathartic and a great way to organize my thoughts. I find that straightforwardness throws people off kilter more than subterfuge, and I pretty much fail at subtlety, so that’s working for me, lol.

    I’m glad you’re enjoying what you read and I hope you visit often 🙂

    July 31, 2010 at 10:36 pm

  4. Liisa

    Great to see your blog! Sounds like you are doing great and making super choices for your boys. Maybe someday I’ll join the homeschool ranks. I truly admire moms who do it and don’t go insane:) Keep in touch!

    September 11, 2010 at 1:14 pm

  5. Amy

    I came across your blog through another site and I just wanted to say that I’m so relieved to know that I’m not the only one in this very saturated area who feels this way. Sometimes I feel like my family is a small group of ants floating on a stick in an sea of dogma. You’ve put into words what I’ve been feeling and thinking for many years and I wanted to say thanks for sharing.

    September 15, 2010 at 2:03 am

  6. Hi Amy! You’re definitely not the only one 🙂 Are you local to Southeast Texas? We’d love for you to come out to the next Park day – click the Triangle Homeschoolers link in the ‘Homeschool’ section of the sidebar for the next date.

    I’m glad you’ve found comfort in my pages 🙂 It’s always nice to find a like-minded mama out there! I hope you visit often.

    September 15, 2010 at 8:30 pm

  7. Well, I found you through your feedback on my blog and enjoyed reading some of your posts. We are in our second year of homeschooling. My kids are raised secular (which may become an issue when grampa moves in with us in 2011). We live in the Midwest so I hear you about your difficulties in finding secular homeschoolers. Luckily we have a large secular hs group in our area and we meet regularly. What a blessing! Since you are spiritual but secular I’d like to invite you to visit one of my favorite sites.

    I look forward to visiting your site often 🙂

    January 1, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    • Hi Marlis! Welcome 🙂 Thanks for commenting. Isn’t it odd to have to figure out how to merge your family’s current beliefs with your parents’ into a peaceful co-existence? I hope that yours goes smoothly!
      Thanks for the link.

      January 3, 2011 at 8:30 am

  8. Hello! I googled “homeschooling is hard” and came across your blog. Many thanks for your honesty. It sometimes feels like all the homeschooling sites are tbe shiny happy kind and today I wanted to reassurance that I am not the only one driven slightly insane by it all. I share many things in comon with you so it was a bit like reading my own blog post which in a strange way made me feel much better. Thanks again – Katie

    September 14, 2012 at 5:52 am

  9. Hi! I wanted to thank you so much for your blog and all your wonderful advice. I am in the 2nd year of homeschooling my 9 (soon to be 10) year old daughter, Cara. Cara has severe dyslexia, processing and memory problems and over-focus ADD. She also has a skull condition called craniosynostosis and has had many surgeries and procedures. We tried Cara at Waldorf for 2 years, but they do not have any accomodations for special education. I tried to get Cara into public school, but they will not even let me meet with the reading specialist until she is already in class. They say she must be in a classroom, and then they have 30-60 days to work out an IEP. I can’t bear the idea of my child sitting in a classroom floundering, and feeling stupid until they figure out what doesn’t work. Despite her disabilities she has a wonderful attitude and good self-esteem. I want to preserve that at all costs. But I worry that with my lack of organization and experience, coupled with her disabilities, she will not learn what the other kids are learning. Her reading tutor is wonderful, but was with the public schools for 40 years and does not miss an opportunity to tell me I am doing my child a disservice keeping her home. It makes me worry and feel guilty all the time. I did not have a curriculum last year- we just focused on getting Cara reading. This year I want to catch her up the best I can. I have always loved the Core Knowledge Sequence but didn’t know how hard it would be to find a curriculum that fit. i also wanted a secular curriculum. Then I found your wonderful blog. I am encouraged, but still worried. How do you fit everything into your day and still have a happy, fun homeschooling environment? We do at least an hour of phonics daily. How then do I fit in grammar and literature and comprehension to a child who struggles to write a sentence? I wanted to teach her cursive and keyboarding as well…but how in the world do I squeeze that in as well? Kids her age are researching and writing reports now..should I be focusing on that as well? Your daily schedule looks so unrushed and relaxed…do you have any advice at all? (Please forgive this crazy, long email,?). best wishes, and thank you again for sharing!

    October 23, 2012 at 9:04 am

    • Hi Terry 🙂
      First of all, breathe!

      Secondly, if you feel like what you’re doing for and with your child is in her best interests, stop listening to nay-sayers. Homeschooling has been proven, over and over again, to benefit kids – esp those with needs that aren’t ‘special’ really, but that don’t function at optimal levels in the classroom. There’s no way that anyone will convince me that sitting in a classroom struggling to do what his peers seems to breeze through is ‘good for him’; I refuse to put my child in an environment where, by it’s very nature, sets him up for failure…. so yeah – if you know that what you’re doing is the right thing for your kid, then keep on and tell everyone else to suck it.

      I don’t know about ‘fun and relaxed’ – we have a pretty busy day, and I am (often informed by my precious children) a ‘mean’ teacher. I take this to mean that I am doing my job, challenging them and pushing them and not accepting less than their best – which sounds to me like what a ‘good’ teacher would do. I am not dogmatic about ‘how’ we homeschool, but our schedule for the year seems to be what helps me most to be un-rushed. Because we have built-in breaks and school year-round, I know that there’s plenty of time for school, and plenty of time to goof off. If we focus on one thing right now, we can take a month and sink into it… LBB is 10.5, SPD/ADHD and struggles to write – I ‘make’ him do a fair amount of it, but we mix it up a lot, too. I use multi-disciplinary lessons (literature/history/penmanship/research) all in one step – often a lapbook with copywork/notebooking in it…. something like that where I can get as much mileage out of a single lesson as possible. That might be a good approach for your dd as well.
      We’re almost done with the ‘grade level’ curriculum for this grade (and it’s only Oct)… but we’ll focus on reviewing and literature-based/unit-based lessons for Jan-May… then bridge for the next grade level over the summer – I also make ‘general’ plans that are long-term – that helps me, too.

      As for researching – I have a one-week research project sheet on my freebies page. It’s designed so that the child picks the topic- anything they wish – then writes 3 of questions about that topic on Monday. Tues-Thurs, they choose one question and research the answer – write the answer, then cite their resource (book, website, interview, etc.), then on Friday, they write a couple of sentences about the things they learned about this topic over the week. I am told that this is a college-level ‘style’ of thinking prep… sounds good to me 😉

      Also – don’t compare your kid. That’s SO HARD, I know, esp when others are involved in her educational care. But try to evaluate your child based on her own merit – where she is today vs. last month/quarter/semester/year. Progress? Good. Is she trying; doing her best? Are you letting her slack? If so, tighten up. If not, then keep on. How is she emotionally/physically/developmentally – on track? Good. If not, look at where you need to focus on. If you’re consistently seeing deficits, then look for outside resources to help her. Homeschooling isn’t about ‘doing it all yourself’ – it’s about what’s best for the *child*. There are PLENTY of resources available to homeschooling parents who need help – even if you’re adequate, there are even resources that you can get for your child that are ‘better’ than adequate – take advantage of them!

      Oh – my kids write neater and pay more attention to their handwriting in cursive than they do in print. We’re working through Handwriting Without Tears at the mo’, and they’re doing well with it. Don’t teach her keyboarding – let her write a blog, or let her set up an account on one of the kids’ social sites (like FB but more age-appropriate) – something online that piques her interest that will help her learn to type. Kids learn faster when they’re internally motivated (as I am sure you know, LOL). Put a carrot in front of her 😉

      I hope this is legible!!
      Feel free to reply here or directly to me via email – 🙂
      And Good Luck!!!

      October 27, 2012 at 11:55 pm

  10. Jo

    You had me at two heathen children. Lol. Great about page and its nice to “meet” someone more like me.

    February 16, 2013 at 10:23 pm

  11. Hi. I was searching for “free homeschool curriculum usable on a pc tablet. I got a link to you blog “‎
    Jun 15, 2013 – There are PLENTY of free homeschooling resources that you can use the first year. ….. The boys both got tablets for Christmas and already, two days int the new … I am loving that I don’t have to give up my computer for them to do their work! …… of glitter and you’ll see what I mean) and a 10 for fun/usability.” however i cannot find this particular post. would love to read it.. going through your other post (kind of glancing not truly reading) i have really liked what i have seen so far. this is year 2 homeschooling for us. and i am looking for material my children can access on their tablets (not adobe flash…) excuse my grammar, spelling and lack of puncuation im in a rush lol

    July 8, 2013 at 9:17 pm

  12. is copyrighted to
    please give appropriate credit,. many thanks lushquotes admin.

    January 20, 2014 at 12:48 pm

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