10 Ways I’m Not a Perfect Homeschooling Mother

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Years before I made the decision to homeschool, I read homeschooling blogs.

Ladies like Carisa and Jolanthe  delighted me with their creativity, organizational skills and pictures of their homeschool days.

Watching these women from afar, I became jealous.

“If they can do it, why can’t I?”

“Are these women superheros?”

Shortly before I headed to the 2:1 conference last year, Carisa poured her heart out and gave us an intimate look at her struggles.

This made me realize that we’re all human. We all have our stumbling blocks. As my dear friend Kathryn reminds me, “We’re just showing folks the highlight reel.”

The Imperfect Homeschool

The areas I need improvement spill into all areas of my life, but I become painfully aware of my shortcomings when faced with teaching small children. When they exhibit behavior that I don’t like, it’s often a mirror to myself.

Think I’ve got it all together? Heck no. Our homeschool is far from perfect, and here’s why.


1. I’m not a morning person

Oh, boy.

Years ago, I actually had a full-time job that started at 5:30 AM. I struggled to get there on time, and warned folks not to talk to me until 9.

I’m so much more productive if I get up and get going long before the kids. It’s an ongoing challenge for me.


2. I’m a great planner, not a great finisher

In August, I’m filled with loads of ideas about field trips, lesson plans and more. By Christmas, I’ve given up a few of the projects.

At the end of the school year, I’m just trying to plod through to the end. I contemplate year round school, but I reach a point where I JUST want to be FINISHED.

3. I am terribly impatient

I’m sure that comes as no surprise.

After discovering that I had five children, a patient at work said, “Oh! You must be so patient!”

Heck no. Not even close.

It’s a constant struggle for me not to throw my hands up, run out of the house yelling, “FORGET IT!”


4. I’m not very organized

As we speak, I have homeschooling paraphernalia in the following places:

  • The living room
  • My bedroom
  • My bedroom closet
  • The kitchen (if we’re counting the printer as a homeschool tool)
  • The boys’ closet
  • The girls’ closet
  • The basement

Either I have far too much stuff (good possibility), or I need to organize the stuff I have in a reasonable fashion.


5. I’m a wee bit on the lazy side


I’d much rather be reading a book, or writing, than cleaning house or planning a meal. True story. (I’ve just embarrassed my grandmother to death.)


6. I tend to fill my plate too full

I’m a bit of an extrovert, so I can become consumed by all the fascinating things to do in our area. I have to sit on my hands to keep myself from signing the kids up for every single soccer league, science class, or art adventure in town.

My children need white space on the calendar, just like me.




7. I don’t like to be wrong

I don’t take criticism very well, unfortunately. My poor husband has to duck if he tells me I’m taking the wrong approach with the children.


8. I compare myself to other mothers 

Blogs and Pinterest can be wonderful resources for me to help me plan my homeschooling days.

I’ve got to be careful. If I linger too long, little seeds of doubt are planted. I start longing for skills I simply don’t have, instead of celebrating my natural talents.


9. I second guess my decision to homeschool 

When the going gets tough around here, I lament having my children at home. There are days where I want to pack the children up, drop them off at the local public school, then come home and cuddle with the baby.

Not exactly mature.


10. I’m the same as everyone else

We all have fears.

We all make mistakes.

We all wonder if we’re doing the right thing.

Many of us end up on our knees, begging God for help with raising our children.

I need to remember Mother Teresa’s famous quote:

God doesn’t require us to succeed; he only requires that you try.


None of us are perfect, despite what we may see on our favorite blogs or Pinterest. Come join my friends at the iHomeschool Network as we share our imperfections and keep it real for you.



  1. How about adding a number 11? “I’m too hard on myself.” I admire what you are doing for your kids and your family. Of course it’s not easy – things that are important seldom are. But cut yourself some slack – you are doing it, and doing it with love, and that’s all that matters. End of rant 🙂

    • Dianna Kennedy says

      You’re exactly right — the ‘purpose’ of this series was keeping it real — which I do a pretty good job here 😉

      I have to tell myself that frequently – no matter what my choice of education for the kids, parenting is darn hard work!

      Love you!

  2. Thanks so much for writing this! I so needed the grace to tell myself these things too! I am all those things as well. BUT God is a God of grace in my life and I need to remember and fall back on Him for strength in all my weaknesses. This was encouraging to read. 🙂

    • Dianna Kennedy says

      Nikko, I often say that God wants me on my knees, instead of charging ahead. 🙂 I have a very hard time letting go of my own ideas and letting Him lead.

      Thanks for coming by!

  3. Oh friend. Now I know why I like you so much. Birds of a feather.

  4. Love it Dianna:)

    Saw this linked as a feature at Fadra’s, whose blog I have recently come to adore. This is so perfect and honestly, I could have written it! ( just not so well!)
    I’ve seen you on blog fb groups, but never visited til now, not knowing your url….thanks to Fadra, I get to click over and “meet” you!

    Havea great day!

    God bless,
    Chris xo

    • Dianna Kennedy says

      Thanks for stopping by! I met Fadra many years ago, at a Bloggy Boot Camp in Baltimore! 🙂 She’s awesome!

      Isn’t it funny how you chat folks up on FB, Twitter, and G+, then suddenly make the connection 🙂

      Great to see you here!

  5. Debbie Gaudino says

    Found your post over at Soul Searching Mama’s link-up – I can totally relate – especially to #2 and #6. I start off so strong in Sept with a platter full of awesome ideas and by this time of the year I am so disappointed that we didn’t get to 80% of them. It’s good to know that we are not alone in our struggles! Have a Happy Mother’s Day!

  6. Debbie Gaudino says

    Found your post over at Soul Searching Mama’s link-up. I can totally relate to most of these – especially #2 & 6 – I start off so strong in Sept. with a platter full (ok – maybe overloaded) of curriculum, projects, and other great ideas – only to find myself disappointed in May that we didn’t do 80% of them. Homeschooling is a lesson in humility – but it is good to know that we all share similar struggles! Thanks for the post – have a blessed Mother’s Day!

  7. Happy Mother’s Day!! Thank you so much for sharing your post at the “Let’s Talk Mother’s Day link-up! Dianne, I feel like I just read a page from my own personal journal. People always say, “Oh, I don’t know how you do it!” If only they knew how much I don’t do, or how much I fail to do right and well. It is reassuring to know that I’m not the only one who struggles with homeschooling, but keeps on keepin’ on every single day!

  8. Thanks for sharing this. I know we all have our doubts and concerns. “Am I really screwing this up?” It is good to see that there other home schooling parents who have the same problems, life issues, and doubts.


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