If I could change one thing about the way I’m perceived as a mom of many, it wouldn’t be the intrusive, assumptive questions about my family size. It wouldn’t be the curious, wide eyes in the grocery store. It wouldn’t be the people who take time to manually count the number of kids following me through the library.
Yeah, we’ve got a lot of mouths to feed. We also entertain a couple of times a week. Combine those two elements and you have a faint-worthy grocery bill. The “average” family of four (does this family actually exist?!?!) spent about $1,000 per month on food items at the grocery store each month in 2012. Our family, by rights, ought to more than double that figure. But we don’t even come close– not even with regular guests at our table.
Our biggest factor in savings is a no-brainer: we avoid pre-packaged foods. Our budget (and our bodies) are healthier thanks to foregoing much of what fills the center aisles of the typical grocery store. We make our own spice blends and seasonings at home. You’d be shocked at how easy it is to adapt a recipe that calls for “cream of _____” to a homemade version! We bake our own cookies, cakes, pies, etc. We don’t eat frozen meals or most convenience foods. What started as a way to keep our budget trim is now so ingrained as a preference that paying for an inferior product seems, well … not worth it.
Now that he’s crossed the magical first year threshold, Simon has decided that he is big. Not that he ever thought he was little. Simon was four months old when he shook off the reins of infancy and got moving, and he has never looked back. But now … now he’s decided that he’s really big. A preschooler, really. Because who has time to toddle when there are three siblings just a touch bigger than you to keep up with?
We were introduced at a church on Sunday. We weren’t there to present our work or even speak about Nepal. Instead, we were there as tour guides for our Hindu friends who expressed an interest in learning more about Jesus. We encouraged them to try a Sunday service at a church we know well; Christopher has long been friends with the pastor, our nonprofit has worked with them on projects in the past, and we were being considered for support by their missions team. So while we knew that there might be a slight chance that we’d have a bit of spotlight (well, more so than we get in any church when we show up and fill a solid row by ourselves) we really weren’t expecting to stand up front and speak.
Not in the mood for a talking cat or a good battle? Sometimes you really just want a heartwarming family feature. Something kind of sweet, maybe a little funny, and long on the warm fuzzies. These are some of the movies our family loves that fall into that category. You’ll notice a definite preference for movies where large families, adoption, and sweet fathers are the focus. What can we say? Sometimes a little nod to the fact that you’re normal– not every teen is a surly snot, not every dad is a disconnected idiot– is what the doctor ordered.
When on earth do you have the time to homeschool all those kids?
The answer is … always.
I’m not sure where to begin here. This is my first blog post, so hang with me. If I say something completely absurd, just blame it on homeschooling.
I’m Mathaus, the third child in our family. In my Mom’s Homeschooling High School post, she mentioned that my sister, Mary Hannah, and I would be writing sequels to her post, giving our views on how homeschooling affects us. So here I am, a little reluctant, but still typing away.
Blood is a curious thing.
Previous entries in this series begin here.
Having a global perspective has impacted my life in countless ways. Hi, I’m Mary Hannah. I’m 16 years old, a junior in high school and ever since I was little, I’ve been taught to have a very wide worldview. I can remember many days of homeschooling where my mom taught us about Africa and about the civil unrest within many of its parts and why this was (and sadly still is) the case. I remember one day when we got to mummify a “dead pharaoh,” all the while reading about Egypt’s rich history and one of its still greatest resources, the Nile. I can remember my favorite Sonlight Core — the one on world cultures — and exalting the day that we finally moved from studying Australia to India (one of my favorite countries).