Monday, September 30, 2013

Working and Homeschooling

Yak doing 5th grade math
I suppose it's time to start posting an occasional plug for my upcoming book, "The Working Parent's Guide to Homeschooling". I was originally planning to self-publish, but a friend in the biz convinced me to write a book proposal he could send to his agent. So that's where we are right now. Waiting and hoping for recommendations for representation from one of the top literary agents in New York! I am humbled. Okay, I'm over it. The truth is, I really believe in this book, and feel it addresses important issues for working parents who may be interested in homeschooling but think it's impossible. From my own 15 years of experience as a working and homeschooling parent, as well as that of friends and mentors I've met along the way, I hope to offer encouragement and real solutions to working parents who want to make the leap into homeschooling and discover a richer, more fulfilling life for themselves and their children. 

Full chapters address scheduling, child care, working at home, resources, freebies and more. This is not just a quickie 20 page ebook. Nearly 200 pages offer examples of working parents, including office workers, nursing assistants, waitresses, front desk workers, swing and night shift workers, 9-5ers, self-employed and work-at-homers. We are singles, couples and families on the road. Our children play music, hockey and baseball. We sometimes watch too much TV and sometimes play too many video games. In other words, we are typical American families - who work and homeschool.

Stay tuned for occasional updates as we move through the publishing process and check back for more posts on the topic of working and homeschooling.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Farmer's Market

Homemade breads, pickles, cronuts; cucumbers, zucchini.
First, a correction to my last post. Our new homes are a 28 foot RV and a 14 ft. travel trailer. What's a few square feet here and there, anyway?

Kreations by Katy, a member of Mrs. D's Homestead
We've really been enjoying participating as vendors at the Saturday Market in Williams, AZ. Helen Gorney, of Open Studios set this up as a venue for local crafters, bakers, and gardeners to market some of their products. So far, we have enjoyed local apples, pears, tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers and eggs, home canned jams, salsas and home-baked goodies, gorgeous hand crafts and local honey. Our last Saturday for the season is coming up on September 28th. Hopefully next year we'll see lots more home grown produce.

Lotions, lip butters, soap cozies, rice bags
Mrs. D has picked up a number of new customers for her handmade all natural shea butter and coconut oil lotion bars and lip butters, as well as meeting with loyal repeat customers. Katy's Kreations are attracting positive attention, with the Dammit Doll being particularly popular. (Hope to have some up on the Etsy store soon). Jacob's Store is selling out of his handmade rustic crosses and his new beanbag ice therapy packs. He's also doing a booming business with ice cold lemonade, made with lemons from grandpa's backyard tree, and ice tea. Now to just get him to update his Etsy store.

Yak's lemonade and ice tea venture

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Mobilizing The Homestead

It's finally here. We've spent the last year downsizing and preparing to hit the road in our 37 ft. RV and 16 ft. travel trailer. We've butchered the cow, a sheep and a llama. We've given away or sold the chickens, ducks, geese, rabbits, guinea, goats and lambs. We are down to 3 horses, 2 dogs, 1 cat and 2 llamas. They will stay with family in Colorado when we are on the road. We will also spend part of the year in Colorado with the animals. 

How do I feel about closing up the homestead and moving on after 15 years? I have such mixed feelings about leaving this place. I've wanted to travel full-time for quite awhile, but the timing wasn't quite right. Now, opportunities have fallen into place and I have made the heartbreaking decision to part with animals and homesteading and stuff, live simply in my travel trailer, visiting friends and family, exploring the country and even seeing more of this great world. I do not leave this place lightly. I have loved it here. I have many friends here. In the meantime, every road trip, even the mini ones just for a day, remind me that travel is another of my passions and since it is harder to travel extensively with an overload of possessions and animals, I gladly, yet reluctantly let go of them. 

Well, you can take the girl away from the homestead, but this girl will still be cooking from scratch, growing what's possible in an RV, canning, sewing, and homeschooling. So really, I'm still me, and will continue to write about these topics, as well as the particular challenges of slow, minimalist travel and simple RV living. Of course, we'll have a variety of locations to share with you, too. I look forward to reporting on locating local, fresh produce, raw milk, home raised meats (more of that once the freezer's empty), and farm fresh eggs.

My homeschooling book is out to the literary agents, with hopes that it will be picked up by someone soon. I will continue to post about our adventures homeschooling on the road. I'll also share about our downsizing efforts and transitioning to an even simpler lifestyle right here. Thanks for stopping by and come back again, soon.