An interview with Amy!

For those of you who have been reading Reforming Motherhood for any length of time, you'll know that until recently, my dear friend Amy blogged here with me. Don't we miss her? (I assure you, I ask her frequently if she'd like to start blogging again, and her answer is always a firm NO. :() Some of you have asked about her in comments or emails, so I thought I'd conduct a little "interview" of sorts with her so that you can be updated on what she's up to.


Hey Amy! Thank you for joining us. First and foremost, (because I know everyone wants to know) how are you and that baby? Give us as many details as you can about this pregnancy and your precious little one.

Hi guys! Long time no write. I don't usually do interviews with anyone less famous than Oprah, but since it is my dearest friend Stacy who asked I am happy to oblige (for a small fee). I am happy to do it as I am a regular lurker on all your blogs but (I must confess) do not comment that often.

I am so happy to report that the baby in my womb and I are doing well. I love to feel the strong kicks and am so thankful that everything is and has gone as well as it did with my three boys. I am scheduled to be induced THIS WEEK! We do not know if it is a boy or a girl. (I am dying to know of course and can’t wait until I find out!)

I have contractions all the time and the baby is really low (it feels like the baby is between my knees) but I am not worried as this is how it went with my last baby. It just means (for me) that when things do happen they happen really fast and pretty easy. Nice, huh?

That is pretty much all there is to report on that… you know how it is at the end of pregnancy. I have a million little complaints and it is hard to be patient, but as God so clearly points out in His word, we do not know when labor will happen! And in the meantime, I get to thoroughly enjoy sleeping through the night!

Thanks! I am SO with you on the "dying to know" part. :)

Now, will you tell us how your first year of homeschooling is going? What curriculum are you doing, and what has your favorite subject/resource been?

With our oldest, (who just turned 6 at the end of October), we are doing a mosaic of things and I am really happy with our choices. We seem to have found the things that work best for Aidan. As far as what level, he is doing a mixture of Kindergarten and First grade work.

For history and read-alouds, we are using Sonlight, and I am happy with the books and schedule.

For our readers and phonics we use the Phonics Museum from Veritas Press. At first, I was not super happy with it, but I've learned to just pick and choose what I think he needs to do instead of trying to do what the teachers book says. Since I've made that change I'm really happy with it. The readers have really captured his attention in a way that other books (like Dick and Jane, for example) would not have.

For math, we are using Math-U-See and I love it! Aidan loves it but I really love it. I cannot believe that I did not learn math this way! It has taught me so much already and I am so thankful to have found this program!

Our church has an awesome catechism/Sunday school program, so I haven't added a Bible curriculum as I feel the lessons and memory work are enough for right now. We just daily work on Bible memory and catechism. In addition to going over it at breakfast I have him write out his verses to practice his handwriting. I am happy with this.

I guess I can’t say what my favorite is because I am happy with it all for right now! (Is it because we are only on week 16? :))

Give us a peek into a day of school with Aidan. What is your schedule? And what are the younger boys doing while you're schooling Aidan?

I have been amazed at how intuitive homeschooling has been. Maybe it won’t be when we are doing more and at higher levels, but I thought that once I "really" started school I would be constantly checking lists and schedules and working hard weekly at charts etc. Instead, we go about our week plugging away at each subject and at the end of each week I am pleased with what we have accomplished.

And of course much of what we do is ripped off from you wonderful homeschooling moms who are so gracious as to blog about your homeschooling life. I wonder if part of our ease is because I have been reading and observing how other families do it for the last six years!

Our schedule goes like this: At breakfast we go over our memory work. If it seems the boys are rowdy I have them do their chores. If they seem calm and happy to stay at the table, I have Aidan write out his scripture verse (only a part of it at a time) and I give Luke (4) a worksheet. Ethan (my VERY BUSY 20-month old) gets to color or have a snack or a toy (hopefully still in his highchair). This does not last very long, but long enough so that at the end of the week Aidan has written all of his verse. That is my simple goal for him in this area right now.

After I have cleaned up the kitchen and started laundry or whatever I needed to do, we all go upstairs for our school time. We begin with Ethan's "school", and we all do it together. We sit on a mat and sing a song we learned at the library and then do an action rhyme or song (like Going On a Bear Hunt or something).

For Luke, we read his "school" book from Picture Book Preschool. We are only doing this because he really wants to "do school" when his big brother does. I am amazed, though, at how much he is learning by simply being around while we do school with Aidan. While we're doing Luke's school, Ethan either stays with us for the book (if he is doing well) or goes into his room with a gate (if he his not).

Finally, we do Aidan’s school. Aidan gets distracted really easily so we all separate for this. Ethan is in his room with toys; Luke does either an activity in a bag or some other "station." This is when Aidan reads out loud to me. He reads six pages a day and we try to do it every day. At first, I was trying to do the whole book and he hated it (and I hated nagging him to be diligent), so I reduced it to ten pages. One day, my husband did school with the boys while I was at the doctor and he thought I only did five pages and it went really smoothly for them. Mike told me five was enough and so we made the change. Aidan was no longer grumbling about it! He immediately began to enjoy this part of our day. Then when he turned six, he informed me we should change it to six pages. (I will not be surprised on the day he announces he wants to do the whole book again!)

After Aidan's school time, the boys go outside or around the house for some active play.

Before lunch (if it works time-wise) we do the table work (if we had not done it after breakfast) or we do math or reading comprehension. Luke and Ethan either do worksheets for fun or play dough or something.

Right before "naptime", I read from Aidan’s read-aloud and/or from his history.

After naps Aidan and I do math together if we had not done it earlier in the day.

Any additional thoughts before you go?

I am really thankful that actually "doing" this homeschool thing and not just reading about it has only strengthened my resolve that it is the right thing. No one else would or could pay this much attention to what works for my sons and what is best for them. In the end the younger ones get a better deal, too. Most of the time when I am "doing school" with these sweet boys it is with their arms around my shoulder or mine around them. And that's exactly how I want their childhoods to be.

Amy, thank you so much for taking the time to "stop by". I know our readers will love hearing about you and your full days! :)

I love you, my dear friend.

1 comment:

  1. Jan. 2, 2007 - Great to hear from you!
    Posted by Michelle
    Amy, so FUN for you to stop by for an interview...good to hear from you! Glad to hear the pregnancy is going so well...not long now, right??? I get occasional updates from Stacy. Can't wait to hear the great news! Please let Stacy post pics!


    Jan. 3, 2007 - What a surprise!
    Posted by AussieinAmerica
    It was such a nice surprise to see this post when I clicked over here today! I am so glad that Amy is doing well. We have missed you Amy.
    Let us all know when you have the baby if it is a boy or a girl - it is so much fun to find out after waiting all that time.
    Take care Amy. I hope and pray that the delivery goes smoothly.
    I'm also glad to hear how your schooling is going. It is fun to actually "do" school after reading about it and planning for so long. It sounds like you are doing a great job and they boys are having a good time too.
    Thanks Stacy for keeping up the blog. I am so glad you decided to stay - I always enjoy your posts.
    Have a great week,


    Jan. 4, 2007 - Thank you
    Posted by Anonymous
    Thank you both for sharing this. Your joy-filled take on homeschooling is very encouraging! I've never commented here before but really enjoy it here! May God bless!! (You may want to go over to myderbe's comment section and link over here. She was looking for homeschool curriculum comments...)


    Jan. 4, 2007 - activity bags
    Posted by Anonymous
    Hey you two! :) I am very curious about the activity bags. I clicked on your link to them, but it did not provide very much detail. Can you please tell me a little something about them. I think they would be something great for Rachel! :)
    Happy induction Amy...c'mon PINK! :)


    Jan. 5, 2007 - boys
    Posted by mystiedawn
    We have two boys so far and I am looking forward to provide an education that allows them to be boys. Thanks for the look at what it looks like for you at this point.

    An all-boy family would be happy, too; I don't think I could ever wait. :) I hope your delivery goes well!


    Jan. 6, 2007 - Untitled Comment
    Posted by Dana
    It was soo good to hear from Amy. She needs to pop in more often!


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