Monday, October 31, 2011

A New Review!

I was recently blessed with the chance to do a review of one of Diane Flynn Keith's newest resources, "The Homeschool Therapist Audio Course and Resource Guide" In each of the 10 sessions, Diane speaks with licensed marriage and family counselor, Michelle Barone. Michelle is known as the "Homeschool Therapist" and has been working with children and families since 1978.
Here is an overview of the session titles.

Session 1 is called "Understanding the Ages & Stages of Childhood Development and How They Impact Homeschool Success"

Session 2 is called "Getting the Kids to Co-Operate Without Yelling, Nagging, or Tears"

Session 3: "How To Get the Support You Need From Spouse, Family & Friends"

Session 4: "How To Juggle Homeschooling Kids of Multiple Ages"

Session 5: "Homeschooling Teens: Transitions, Socialization, & The Empty Nest"

Session 6 is about "Working and Homeschooling for Couples or Singles"

Session 7: "Homeschool Support Group Dynamics - How To Find A Good Fit"

Session 8, "Homeschooling Through Crisis"

Session 9: "How to Prevent and/or Recover From Homeschool Burn Out"

Session 10: "Homeschooling Non-Traditional Families"

Since i was allowed to choose one, i chose Session 8, "Homeschooling Through Crisis"
This session is about what happens when your normal homeschooling routine becomes anything but normal.

Here is my review:

Michelle Barone, licensed marriage and family therapist, gives insights and helpful hints in this discussion. Some of the problems she discusses include: divorce, financial crisis, natural disasters and health crises.
The main point that I took away from this discussion is that keeping the kids in their regular routine, if possible, is the best thing for them. It helps lend a sense of normalcy in an otherwise abnormal situation. This is especially important if you have always schooled them at home.
Another great tip from Michelle was to make a plan of action for "just in case". We never know what will come our way, but, having a plan can ease some of the stress when crisis happens. What will be the plan in case of an illness? Divorce? Loss of a job? While we pray that none of these things happens, it is good to have a plan for the unexpected.
Whatever does happen, it is important to validate your children's feelings and reaffirm that they are safe, despite circumstances. This is especially important during the event of a natural disaster, or financial downturn.
Michelle also reminds us to turn to our support network when crisis occurs. Friends, family, church, and the local homeschool group are usually willing and able to help out. We need to remember that when we are in crisis as a family, everyone struggles. If we, as parents, are mindful of our words and actions we can help ease our children's anxiety.
We also need to consider that in crisis, keeping the family together provides safety and structure that children need.
Michelle Barone's discussion left me feeling like I had a handle on how to care for my children in crisis. She also gave me tips for making a plan for the unexpected. I think all homeschooling parents will benefit from listening to this audio program.

If you would like more information about how to purchase this set for your homeschool group or yourself, please check them out at:

If you would like more information on Michelle Barone, please take a look at her website:


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

My grandma

Doris Lucille Gay went to be with the Lord on 19, September 2011. That is the main reason that i have not been blogging lately. The little bugs and i just got back from driving to and from California for "Gram's" funeral. i found out that it is 2,000 miles from my front door to my sister's. With the Lord's help, i made it in 3 days.

Gram was a wonderful woman. She had a hard life, but, she was an over-comer. She was so funny and bright; a joy to be around. She snorted when she got to laughing really hard. That is one of the things that i inherited from her. She collected shot glasses, she hated washing dishes, she loved reading and she played the piano by ear. Her favorites were the tunes from the Big Band Era, Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, and the like. She and Gramps had a song of their own, "Sentimental Journey" by Les Brown and his orchestra. For Christmas every year, she would play "Silver Bells" for me. It is my favorite secular Christmas tune. i think i liked it best because she would play it just for me. :) When she would mess up while playing, she would get so frustrated with herself! She and my grandfather were married just 20 days shy of 60 years. Gramps passed away on December 3, 2005. Their anniversary would have been the 23rd.

When Gram was 18, she married my Grandpa. They had a baby boy the following year. Dennis Allen Gay was his name. He died of cancer the following year, right before my mom was born. Neither of them ever got over it. Gram said that if my mom hadn't been born right after losing Denny, she thinks she would have died. The picture above is the 3 of them when Denny was about 9 months old.

When Gram was 21, she was horribly burned in a gas stove accident. My mom was three at the time, and remembers it to this day. Gram had been cooking over the gas stove, she was wearing one of Gramp's flannel shirts as a jacket. When she reached up to get a spice over the stove, the shirt caught on fire. She had third degree burns up her side, under her arm and down her back. Thankfully a neighbor heard her screams and came to help. Gram was in the hospital for almost a year.

My Grandpa was an alcoholic. He could be mean when he had been drinking. Thankfully, he gave that up when i was still a kid. He was hard to live with when he was young, and wasn't a Christian. He blamed God for Denny's death. Gram was a Christian, albeit a timid one, and she clung to her faith throughout those trying years.

They moved around a lot. Sometimes the places were wonderful, like Lake Tahoe. Sometimes, they were awful, like Blythe, California, where Gramps worked for the Border Inspection station. They met in Redlands, and were married at the Astesticia, an old Spanish mission in town. They ended up have 2 other daughters, each 5 years apart.
There is so much more i could say about my Gram, but, you still wouldn't understand what an amazing woman she was. She went into the hospital in early February, for double pneumonia, and never recovered. i miss her a lot. It blesses me immensely to know that they are ALL in heaven together now. Gram, Gramps, (who became a Christian 3 months before he died) and their baby Denny; together again, forever. i can hardly wait to see them again!

Thanks for reading!