Sometimes you just have to give up!
Accepting failure is never easy, but there are times when there is no choice but to wave the white flag of surrender and admit defeat. When you’re licked, you’re licked.
And I have definitely been defeated. The homeschooling mess is here to stay and there is nothing I can do about it, so I’m learning to accept it. And that’s okay.
Books and pencils, maps and math manipulatives, while beautiful in that scholarly, doing-what-I’m-supposed-to-be-doing-for-the-good-of-my-children sort of way, have never been my idea of charming decor. I don’t particularly like looking at spiral notebooks, random paperbacks, and binder spines. I don’t see anything particularly pretty about flashcards, pencil boxes, and Play-Doh containers.
I’ve done everything in my power to try to beautify it. Or to hide it! Neither has worked.
I searched for the perfect cabinet to contain it all. One with doors! But I never found it.
I accepted the inevitability of open shelving, but I wanted a certain size to fit in a certain place. I couldn’t find that either.
Then I decided I would use pretty containers like baskets or wooden bins. But…yikes! I could have ordered a custom-built cabinet for what some of those were going to cost me!
In the end, with a painful grimace I broke down and purchased stackable plastic cubbies.
Plastic…ugh. To my thinking, plastic containers should be hidden in my cupboards or under my children’s beds. I. Hate. Plastic. Furniture. Sometimes, however, necessity begs for compromise.
Sigh. So I couldn’t make the homeschooling stuff pretty. Okay, I could still work for inconspicuous.
Yeah, well that hasn’t worked out either. My cubbies still couldn’t contain everything, so I consoled myself by purchasing a couple of tolerably attractive baskets to corral the overflow. All they’ve done is take up more floor space. And my “inconspicuous” spot for the stacked cubbies has never been inconspicuous at all. It’s been very much visible and very much in the way and I have never, ever been satisfied with it.
So just the other day, in the midst of FINALLY filing away everything from the school year we just completed, I reorganized and relocated it all. It’s still in my kitchen, since that’s where we seem to school most often, but now the homeschooling stuff is FRONT and CENTER! There’s no concealing it and there was no effort put into beautifying it either.
Because I am a homeschooling mom. I have embraced that fact with my whole heart and soul and I am pouring myself into educating and loving my children. Unfortunately, some homeschool mess goes along with that. But if a little mess and less-than-ideal decor are a natural part of the package, then I need to learn to embrace that as well!
It’s not pretty per se, but I’m nevertheless proudly displaying random books and pencils and homeschooling odds and ends for all to see. No more hiding it or trying in vain to dress it up. Just like a seamstress’s sewing machine and notions or an avid hunter’s gun cabinet and gear, the mess is a part of whom I am.
And you know what? I’m learning to like it!