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The Socialization Question in Homeschooling

The following is my take on the run-away most overrated or underrated (depending on your own take) question on homeschooling. I wrote it nine (!) years ago when we were homeschooling all four children, and posted it in my now-deleted blog. I have revised certain parts, but on the whole, my stand remains.  And it is this: socialization is a non-issue. The article frequently draws context from the Philippine culture and my own experience.  


Socialization, defined. I define socialization as the process of dealing with and trying to get along with other people. The composition of "other people" includes not just one's peers. It includes older and younger people. It also includes people who are not necessarily in the same undertaking, e.g., being a student, that one is in.

Family dynamics.Socialization, not surprisingly like charity, begins at home. Homeschoolers socialize with their siblings; some siblings may be close to their age, while some may be older or younger by quite …

A House Repair Worksheet

Home repairs are like toothaches: the sooner that you do something about them, the better. Leaking faucets waste water and cost money. Sometimes, they even make sounds that seem to penetrate your skull. A loose doorknob is a security risk. A busted light bulb left un-replaced can cause physical injuries especially in hallways and staircases. It goes on.

The irony is that taking care of home repairs is not a pleasant task, especially if you are not a handyman. Or the hubby is not a handyman. Or nobody in the house is a handyman. So sometimes, the repairs grow lives of their own and -- voila! -- accumulate.

It's not too late for order, though, and order always helps. May I dare share with you a house repair worksheet that I put together in the name of order. It is in tabular form. The rows refer to the rooms or areas of the house where repair is needed, and the columns refer to the type of repair needed, namely, masonry, carpentry, electrical, and plumbing.


If you prefer to do the …

Dishin' It Out: a re-post

This post originally appeared in Jenny's blog, Suscipio, back in April 2013. (Jenny now blogs at The Littlest Way.) My current circumstances prompted me to revisit my thoughts when I wrote this post, and I share them now with you. 


A pious and wise person once advised praying with your list of intentions while doing the dishes. You either have your list in your head or taped on a surface near the sink, then you "work" through it while doing your chore. It's a strategy that gets the dishes done and the intentions prayed for at the same time.

I've always regarded that advice as one of the most useful gems I've ever come across as a mom. Who doesn't want a prayer corner all to herself and a non-negotiable prayer schedule? Sometimes, though, The practical aspects of living the faith do not converge in a frictionless manner, so Plans B are necessary. And they are not at all bad. It's the purity of intentions that counts.

"A married woman must, when cal…

Dividing My Day

If I can have 48 hours in a day, I would welcome that. I'm quite happy with 24 though, never mind that at the end of those precious 24 hours, I still wonder where they went. Each time.

I guess this is why scheduling is an essential practical skill and following a schedule, an exercise in virtue. I will talk about virtue another day. Today, let me think aloud about how I plan my day, or more specifically, how I divide my day. I think of planning my day as dividing my day because as old wisdom goes, things are more manageable if they are divided to small chunks.

This is how a page of my daily planner looks like:


I use a generic planner because, well, it's cheap.

Anyway. Activity-wise, I divide each day into eight blocks:

1) Household. Yes, chores.
2) Homeschool.We are never on autopilot never mind that we have been doing this for years.
3) Family. On some days, this is as simple as making an appointment with the dentist. On some days, this can mean something more challenging lik…

April Mappings

In adoration
... and in full trust in his forgiveness, guidance, and providence, I join David -- he who sinned grievously, repented sincerely and completely, and from whose lineage the Savior was born, I revisit the most beautiful of psalms:
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want; He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters; He restores my soul. He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil; for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies; thou anointest my head with oil, my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
~ Psalm 23 (RSV, Catholic Edition, Ignatius Press)

In contrition
April is devoted to the Holy Spirit, who came to the Apostles on the first Pentecost. I examine myself on how I have been usin…

The Sweetest Thing

As couples our age are wont to do (I think), we got to talk about like, death, and eternity. 
Not surprisingly, my practical side emerged, and said, "I don't want you to die before me. I wouldn't know what to do."
Then he replied, "I try to live a righteous life here so if I have to go before you, I can intercede for you and the kids in Heaven."
Isn't that the sweetest thing a man can say to his wife?

Consistency in 2017

Thank God for cycles and calendars and clean slates. Can you imagine what it would be like to open a brand new planner, sniff its pages, and glide your hand across the smooth pages, but feel weary and lethargic on the first day of the year? What a disconnect!

But because we have days, weeks, months, seasons, and years that roll along, one after the other, we can mark beginnings and endings, work and rest, resolutions and examinations. Not that the error and sins of the past should be forgotten; heavens, no! We are able to deal with those errings, though, because of the hope, second chances, and optimism afforded by each beginning.
The case at hand being the start of 2017. I have set up a total of four calendars in my work space and our bedroom alone (talk about overkill). While I have not written down my resolutions, I made a general promise to myself that I will just do things in a better way and be less, well, lazy. 
I should, of course, be more specific. Vague plans lead to zero re…