A Heart of Dakota Life
Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is for one to eat and drink, and to find enjoyment in all the labor in which he labors under the sun all the days which God gives him – for this is his part. Ecclesiastes 5:18
Every day is a gift to be enjoyed to its fullest!
Every day is a gift God is giving us to enjoy and live to its fullest. The only life we can enjoy is our own! It does no good to think to ourselves, “I’d enjoy my life if I had your life.” Nor does it do any good to tell ourselves, “I’ll enjoy my life later.” Life is meant to be enjoyed now! With Heart of Dakota, our everyday life is already quite enjoyable. The guides Carrie has written naturally add variety and fun to the day. But sometimes life is complicated, and it can tend to be stressful. Do you feel stressed and long for simpler days? Well, the good news is in the ‘labor’ God has given us as homeschool moms, we have much control over our everyday life!
Ideas to help you enjoy everyday life to its fullest!
Today I thought I’d share a few things I’ve found that help us enjoy our everyday Heart of Dakota life to its fullest. They may seem small, but they have a great impact on our attitude and approach to life. Some of them may appeal to you, and others may not. But, hopefully they will jump start your dream of how you want your homeschool days to be set up to be filled with joy!
How can you start your day with joy?
• I spend 10-30 minutes in my bed first thing with a favorite devotional of mine to start my day right. Devotionals that I find encouraging and joyful are helpful in setting a happy tone for the day for me.
• The boys and I meet in our pj’s in my bed one on one in the morning to do a ‘slow start’ to school. We usually do our Bible time together there and go over any independent work completed as ‘homework’ the night before.
• Starting our day with Christian praise music playing in the kitchen gives a cheerful tone during our chores and showers. Creating Christian playlists as a family makes sure everyone gets to look forward to hearing favorite songs each day.
How can you keep enjoying your day during homeschooling?
• Having a time for snacks and drinks mid-morning and another time mid-afternoon keeps our bodies fueled for the day. Hot cocoa with whipped cream and sprinkles and coffee for me are favorites, along with air-popped popcorn with different toppings.
• Using our whole house to homeschool keeps us all comfortable and gives variety to the day. Cuddling up on the couch in the living room with the fireplace on for Storytime readings is cozy. Using the kitchen for science experiments, the dining room table for seatwork, or the CD player upstairs keeps us moving. My son even set up an impromptu blanket area by the fireplace for Storytime last week – what fun!
• I like to light candles and put them on the tables we use for homeschooling. Getting different candles and letting the boys pick their favorite scent to light at their work area has been lovely. The birthday sprinkle candle from the dollar store has been the most beloved!
How do you finish your day with joy?
• We like to hang the best day’s work in strong magnet clips on the fridge. When Dad gets home, we share our work with him during supper. This is especially effective with younger children!
• Stickers… yes, kiddos do still love stickers on their work! Monster trucks are a favorite for one of our sons. For older kiddos, positive comments such as “Way to go!” or “Fantastic!” written on their papers are encouraging too!
• Planned meeting times where each child shares his work with me gives individual attention. It also gives time for me to correct work, so we start our next day with yesterday’s work totally done.
• Snap pictures of your happiest Heart of Dakota homeschool moments. Print them to hang on the fridge or load them for a slideshow on a digital photoframe. This is a visual reminder of how much we have enjoyed our homeschooling with Heart of Dakota through the years.
In conclusion, these are just a few ideas to help you consider how you can best enjoy your everyday life with Heart of Dakota! The first step to enjoying our everyday life is just remembering to be grateful for the lives God has given us. This ‘labor’ of love we call homeschooling truly is a blessing meant to be enjoyed. Take time to enjoy your life today rather than waiting for tomorrow. Happy homeschool mamas make happy homeschool children – so do what you can to approach each day with joy!
PS – For those of you who like to use the app Bloglovin, we wanted to let you know that we have added our blog to this site.
Heart of Dakota