Homeschooling Wins + Losses

I tried to make hummingbird nectar this weekend, so that we could fill our new feeder in time for this new school week.  But I promptly forgot that I had a pot on the stove and started playing Stack the States with Jojo.  Forgot until…the smoke alarms started going off.  Always good to know that they work!  After we got the windows opened and the alarms turned off, we had this foaming black mess to deal with.  The pot is still soaking.

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And somehow these small losses can loom large.  They come to stand for all the little things that fall through the cracks–leftovers that never make it into the fridge, laundry that needs to be washed again because it never got put in the dryer.  I’ve got a lot of irons in the fire and sometimes they don’t get the attention they need.

But there are also wins!  Great, big successes that buoy me up.

Piano lessons with Hoffman Academy has been one of our recent successes.  I first heard of their work almost a year ago, but it wasn’t until this school year–and really after Christmas–that we really got our feet under us.  We are now reliably moving through the lessons and making real progress.  I wrote more about our experience for The Curriculum Choice.  They will be re-launching their website in the Fall with new interactive games and progress tracking.  I am really looking forward to the practice suggestions and tracking.  Through March 10th, you can back their Kickstarter campaign and have access for half the cost!


Finding space for music lessons and learning together has been a tremendous encouragement and I’m excited to see what the Spring and Summer holds for us as we continue learning.


  1. Yes, wins + losses nicely sums up the homeschooling experience. : ) You don’t need to boil hummingbird nectar. I learned in Birds and Blooms magazine that all you need to do is boil the water(in a tea kettle) and add it to the sugar. The ratio I use is 1 part sugar to 1 part water. It attracts lots of hummers!

    1. I so love hearing *your* experience, Susan! And thank you for the nectar tip. I stood vigil over the pot this morning after I published this post. We’ll fill the feeder later this morning!

  2. Thanks for letting me know about this! My boys took piano lessons from a friend a few years ago. She went back to work full time and had to stop giving lessons. She did them very cheap! We haven’t been able to afford lessons, so this will be something to look into. Now if I could find something similiar for guitar.

    1. Cassie–I really think Hoffman Academy might be a good fit for you. We absolutely love Mr. Hoffman…and his finger puppets! And my 9 year old is applying what she is learning to the guitar as well.

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