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The Joy of homeschooling and Thanksgiving

Granparents & Kids
Granparents & Kids
Tonya Vander ©

Making memories is what it is all about to for home-school families, especially when the holidays roll around. As I started thinking about this year’s Thanksgiving, I realized it could be the last one where all four of our family members would be around the table. My oldest is a senior in high school this year. By next year, she will be in college. I can only hope that she will be able to come home for the holidays. For so many years I remember baking, making crafts, and snuggling up on the couch reading a favorite read-aloud which became my priorities in months of November and December. Sure all the shopping still needed to be done and the house cleaned, but when it came to the start of the holidays I relaxed when it came to school stuff.

As home-school moms, we get the privilege to see the wonder of celebrating Thanksgiving through the eyes of our children. Teaching them about the Pilgrims and Indians and what the first meal of thanksgiving was all about is such an awesome time to demonstrate all the true principles of the holiday. They get so excited over making little turkey hands and pine cone name plaques. Some of my fondest memories are teaching my kids learn to make pumpkin pies on their own and having their grandparents rave about how scrumptious they were. They learned that sharing food can build a bridge even when you have opposite views about almost everything else.

Gratitude, joy, family traditions, and love can be expressed by not only learning about our wonderful history, but also by giving to others in need. We have always tried to have someone at our table that had no where to go for Thanksgiving. Chuck and I  reminded our kids that when we moved to Iowa we didn’t know anyone. Our church opened their doors for those families that couldn’t make it back home for Thanksgiving. We look for ways to do the same for others.

Each year we take time to share what we are grateful for the year. When our kids were little, we heard how Amanda was grateful for her  friend Luda and Jonathan was grateful for going undefeated in his flag football. As the kids got older we heard gratitude about passing algebra and finishing world literature. Each year I look forward to what they will say. It gives me a chance to hear their joys and their concerns.

I can only hope that schedules and book reports won’t over shadow what could be a great time to make memories this year. I know it is a cliché , but time passes so quickly.



  • TATYANNA VANDER 5 years ago

    Holidays can be tough. Loved the look into how you manage to make what could be a difficult season a time of love, family and tradition. Encouraging and uplifting words are welcome this time of year.