The End of an Adventure

This is a difficult post to write, because writing it makes it even more real. Without being too dramatic, it does feel like the end of an adventure. So what is going on? Celeste will be entering the public school system this coming fall. She will be going to junior high school for grade seven. 

Celeste and I on the nature trail ~ May 2016

This is something that we have talked about, at her request, for the last half a year or so. She feels ready. We visited the school she will be attending and she attended an orientation morning. Her big brother went there for his grade 8. 

One of the downside of living in a small province is that the homeschool community can sometimes feel small and as wonderful as it is, it does have a majority of young children. There are older children homeschooling but for whatever reason, religion or distance or other, we have not connected with them. Celeste is the most social of our three children, so I am not surprised by this turn of event. Even with regular meetings with homeschool families and activities like musical theatre classes, it sometimes doesn't feel enough. I remember what our oldest daughter told me when we moved to the island and she had decided to enter public school for senior high. She told me that she just wanted to be in the same building as other kids her age. She also didn't want to go through the "work" that comes from setting up a new homeschool support group for ourselves. We had moved before and she knew what it took to make those new connections. I personally enjoyed all that process, but she didn't. 

One reason I said this was difficult to write is because what I am saying might sound to some readers as validation that one of homeschooling's issues is "socialization". It is not. Socialization is not an issue with homeschooling. I still firmly believe that. After homeschooling my 3 children for over 11 years, I can tell you for sure that it is not! There were plenty of times when I even had to turn down "social" activities because there were too many options and we needed to be at home at least some of the days of the week! I do think that local situations and the age of the homeschool children play a role in the experience, of course. So what worked 4 or even 2 years ago for Celeste, doesn't work the same now. If we lived in a more populated area or in a province that had a different homeschool environment, she would likely continue to stay at home for her education. 

Dissecting a corn kernel for science ~ May 2016

The other reason it was hard to write this post is probably more obvious. It is that homeschooling has been an EXCELLENT adventure (yes, I feel it deserves those capitals!). Each year, we had some amazing experiences, learning together, discovering the world, virtually or in our own backyard! Too many memories to share with you in this long post, but Poetry Tea Time, science experiments, nature study, a ton of reading together, cooking, so so much! So, of course, it will be sad to let go of that. When our older two children left homeschooling for public school, Celeste was still at home. It was difficult to let go of them, but it gave Celeste and I so much one on once time learning together, that it was okay somewhat. But now... It is my "baby" going off to school! I will no longer be homeschooling every day. Now, there are many veteran homeschoolers that believe that "once a homeschooler, always a homeschooler" and I believe that too. I have spent the last decade learning along side my children and it has opened up a thirst and a world of knowledge that I never personally experienced when I went to school. I know that I will continue on learning for myself.  I also know that I will be a part of Celeste's experience with public school, however that will turn out to be, I don't know yet. We have nurtured the type of relationship through homeschooling, and simply being together day after day, that can't be turned off. I look forward to listening to her stories from her new adventures, friendships, and learning. 

The end of homeschooling marks the beginning of different adventures, for Celeste, but for me too. I have projects I want to work on and will now have more time to dedicate to them. I also know that the future can't be predicted, so we don't know how her public school experience will turn out and maybe she will find out that it doesn't work for her...and continue on homeschooling. I am very grateful for a amazing supportive husband that makes all these adventures possible, truly. Since we have been living on one income, basically since I was pregnant with our first baby (and she is almost 19!), we can continue to make do in this way. 

I am hoping to continue to be a support to other homeschool families too, locally or through my blog. I would love to continue writing about homeschooling, reflecting on our experiences and what I have learned from them. Next month, in July,  I will be in Ohio speaking at the Brave Writer Retreat about nature appreciation. I am looking forward to this so much and will let you know how it went when I get back. If you are curious about homeschooling, you can search my blog and read archived posts, or contact me via social media. I would be happy to help! You can find all my contact information in the About Me page. 

Celeste and I, on the nature trail ~ March 2016


  1. I'm so sad for you and excited for your new adventures. Change is just that...change. It will change you both, but I'm sure in good ways. Love to you both!

  2. Oh Alex! What mixed emotions you must have! Enjoy your time to pursue your interests. :)

  3. Alex, you have given all of us in the homeschool community so much encouragement and inspiration and even at this moment of ending your years of homeschooling, I feel inspired by you! The way you are guiding her the way she should go, understanding that there is a new season coming in life for both of you is precious! And I'm sure, oh so sure, that you both have been so blessed in this whole journey together and will continue to be. To let her stay or to let her go is to give her wings to fly as well. Happy new season dear Alex and Celeste!

  4. Sounds so bittersweet! Yay for you to be willing to listen and follow your child's needs and leading, as well as for having the time to follow your own passions. But.... sadness that your homeschooling days are done. I can't even picture it! I know you are such a terrific advocate for the homeschooling community and I've appreciated that homeschooling allowed us to connect. :) All the best with your NEW adventures!

  5. can i just say i'm going to miss poetry tea time a lot.
    i hope your girl will have a wonderful time in a new environment, and maybe you will find more time to create!

  6. It is an exciting new chapter in this journey, for you both.
    I firmly believe in the idea of "once a Homeschooler, always a Homeschooler."

  7. We live on Cape Breton Island and although homeschoolers here are few and far between, my kids are usually out in the community seven days a week, involved with community theatre (and sometimes film or TV), dance, etc. Since my son turned 16 last year, he has enjoyed working part time and for several months has been enjoying working as a saute cook, since a chef is one of the careers he is considering. So no, socialization isn't a problem for us either LOL.
    I was just telling a mom who was hesitant to homeschool because there isn't a big group here that we used to live in a large centre with many homeschoolers but my kids didn't make any friends in homeschool circles, it was always outside the homeschool world where they found their tribe.

  8. Hugs to you!! It must be difficult but I give you so much credit for listening to your daughter and her needs. I love how you view this as a positive with new adventures to come. Hold on to that-and what will be, will be.

  9. congratulations to both you & celeste — hope she has a great time at school! you have had such an amazing time together and it has been wonderful to see. <3 <3 <3 i also believe once a homeschooler, always a homeschooler! :"D)


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