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Issue #13 - I Need to Make Money but I Want to Homeschool my Children!

In this Issue:

  • From Laura's Desk: Torn between homeschooling and having to work
  • Homeschooling Tips and Ideas: Working from home
  • Book Recommendations: The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius
  • New Product Announcements: My book update
  • Our Favorite Recipes: Molly's Tex-Mex Dinner
  • Used Curriculum Corner: Art, Math, English and Religion books
  • From Laura's Desk

    With the economy being what it is, I can't help but noticing that many of us families trying to live on one income seem to be having a pretty rough go of it. Unless the one income you are living on is fairly large, I'm sure you're noticing it, too.

    If you're like me, homeschooling is a part of you. I usually say that homeschooling is my life. It isn't just something I do, it is something I live. Therefore, the thought of having to put my children in school strikes a very deep chord with me. We, too, have been struggling financially and have discussed the possibility of me having to get a part-time job, if I could even find one. It makes me sad to think about it, but at the same time, trying to rob Peter to pay Paul can be very exhausting.

    While talking to a friend this week about this subject, she made the comment that it's just another way for the devil to get in and tear up the family. Unfortunately, it looks as if he might be winning that game.

    So how do you all cope with this situation? I have friends, as well as myself, who have tried a variety of strategies:

  • I have friends that have had to go back to work full time and have been able to stagger their work schedule with their husband's so that they can still homeschool.
  • I have other friends who work part time and homeschool during their off times.
  • I know of others who have taken a talent they have and tried to market it by either offering it on the internet or offering classes to teach others how to do it.
  • Still others have developed some kind of curriculum or help for homeschoolers and have marketed it via the internet or homeschool conventions.
  • Have you capitalized on a talent you have? Anyone out there good at sewing skirts, as decent ones are terribly hard to find? Have you considered watching and/or homeschooling other people's children?

    These are just some of the ideas that I have come across recently. Maybe something here will get your wheel's spinning and get you started on the road to earning some extra money while being able to still homeschool your children! I'm a firm believer that if we think and work hard enough, there is a way to do both.

    A funny thing just happened: As I was getting ready to edit this newsletter, I finally read an email that my husband had sent me. It was an email from Ann Sieg who is an internet marketing "guru". In her email she writes,

    "If you look around, you’ll see headlines everywhere about how unemployment levels are at all time highs...

    While at the same time, there has never been more opportunities and more how-to information on financial success and paving your own path than at any other time in history.

    You’ve got detailed courses everywhere that cost less than what it takes to fill your car up with gas a couple times – a mere fraction of the mountains of debt that people go into for a college education - on how to make six figures from home using things like a blog and Facebook... miraculous modern tools that are free to use.

    So why isn’t everyone financially free?"

    Just some more food for thought!

    P.S. I am not endorsing Ann Sieg nor any particular way to make extra money. I'm merely sharing some thoughts and discussions I've had on this topic in the hopes that they might help someone else who is also struggling.

    If you'd like to keep up with all the latest info, you can always follow me on facebook!

    Homeschooling Tips and Ideas

    In this section I'd like to talk to you about some of the options we are trying to help supplement our income. If you aren't interested in finding out what other people do or you don't like shameless self-promotion, then skip on down to the next section :)

    If you want some potential new ideas, read on!

    About three years ago my husband and I came across SBI! and we fell in love with the idea of building websites based on things we were passionate about. Thus the idea was born and in my spare time over the past three years I have built this site, which has become a true labor of love! If you have a passion about something and want to build a website around it, then check out this page! In addition to building it, the website has given me the ability to offer other things that I have written, like my unit studies and organizing book.

    About 11 years ago, a good friend of mine (another homeschooling mom who had a talent and was looking to make extra income) started making soap. About 1 1/2 years ago we started using her soap and loved it, so we also started selling it. While our website for that product hasn't gotten too far, our soap sales have done reasonably well for the effort we've put into it. Our main advertising avenues have been word-of-mouth, facebook and the local farmer's market. This has been a great business for the kids to help with! Educational and money-making...can't beat that!

    We've also joined up with Reliv and added multi-level marketing to our list of experiences. This is another great opportunity for the whole family to be involved and learn A LOT along the way. MLMs are a huge market and there are a lot of options to choose from. We have found this to be a great way to work part-time or full-time from home and there is the potential to earn a good income. You can go here to contact us for more information.

    Let's face it, if we're going to add something to our already busy lives, it has to be worth it. At this point our goal is for me to still stay home but for us to earn enough extra income to run our household. Here are some of the things we look at in a business opportunity when trying to decide if it is right for us:

    1. Would we enjoy doing it?
    2. Can we make money doing it?
    3. Can the whole family be involved?
    4. Is there something to be learned while doing it?
    5. Does it give us a chance to share our faith?

    If we find something that meets all those criteria (especially the fifth one!!) then that opportunity is one we will consider trying.

    I'd love to hear your ideas on what you've done to earn money. Just contact me here and let me know so I can share it with others and maybe help them, too!

    Book Reccomendations

    Hard times call for hard decisions to be made. The whole financial realm is a great stress for many families. Instead of recommending a book this time, I am going to recommend you go on a retreat. Not just any retreat, but the master of retreats: The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. This is the format that most retreats are based off of.

    The Spiritual Exercises, as given by the Miles Christi priests, are weekends of silence, meditation and prayerful reflection that allow you to set resolutions that will help you to restructure your life the way that God wants you to.

    If you have to make some decisions or are wondering what direction your life should be taking, then a weekend of silent meditation and reflection might be just what you need.

    My husband and I have been going on these retreats once a year for the past four years and I cannot even begin to tell you the positive things they have done for our lives.

    If you are willing to go with an open mind and an open heart to hear what God is trying to tell you, then I would recommend checking out their website to find the retreat nearest you.

    New Product Announcements

    "A Plan for Joy in the Home", my organizing-your-day workbook, is in the layout stage. I am so excited to have found a very talented young lady who is doing the layout for me, as well as doing illustrations for each of the chapters! Once we have the front cover done, I plan on adding a page to my website and making a facebook page to help promote it.

    Remember, the book is all about getting you to pray about, think about and work out what it will take to make you feel more organized and in better control of your day! If this sounds good to you, stay tuned...I'll keep you updated on the progress.

    And if you wouldn't mind, could you please pray for this project? I am really excited about getting this out there and I would appreciate your prayers so that it all goes according to God's plan.

    Thank you so much!

    Our Favorite Recipes

    Unfortunately when things get tight, the food budget is one of the things to get cut. We're always looking for good but inexpensive things to fix for dinner. We just won a new fall cookbook and have been trying out some of the recipes. Here is one that is easy, inexpensive and good!

    Molly's Tex-Mex Dinner

    3/4 C cornmeal
    1 1/2 C milk
    1 egg beaten
    1 lb ground beef, browned and drained
    1 1/4 oz pkg chili seasoning mix
    1 tsp seasoned salt
    14 1/2 oz can diced tomatoes
    15 1/4 oz. can corn, drained
    2 1/4 oz can sliced black olives drained
    8 oz pkg shredded Mexican-blend cheese

    Mix together cornmeal, milk and egg in a large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients, except cheese. Spoon into a slow cooker. Cover and cook on high setting for 3 to 4 hours. Sprinkle with cheese; cover and continue to cook for an additional 5 to 10 minutes until cheese melts. Serves 6.

    Note: Since we have a big family, we used 3 lbs of meat and adjusted the recipe accordingly.

    Used Curriculum Corner

    Here are some of the used books that I currently have. If you are interested in purchasing them, you can contact me and we can arrange the shipping. The price I have listed is what they will sell for PLUS shipping charges. Of course, shipping will depend on how fast you want the items and where you live in relation to me. We can work all the details out through email. Hopefully this will be a win-win situation for both of us!

    In the Math category, I have the Teachers' Guides for the following levels of Modern Curriculum Press: K, A, C, and D. These are all in great shape and will sell for $10 each.

    I have one English book set:

  • Voyages in English 4 There is the main text, the teacher's manual and key and the workbook, which has not been written in. I will not break the set apart, so the entire set will sell for $10
  • In the Spelling category, we have the following:

  • Spelling 5 for Young Catholics by Seton. $3
  • Spectrum Spelling Grade 5 Workbook that has not been written in. $5
  • MCP Spelling Workout Teacher's Edition for Level C, E and F. Each book is $5
  • MCP Word Study Teacher's Resource Guide for Level D and E. Each book is $8
  • Somehow I ended up with a bunch of extra Seton books. In the Art category, I have the following:

    Art 3, Art 4, Art 5 and Art 6 All of these books are free of markings and coloring (we always made photocopies!) Each book is $7

    I also have Seton's American History for Young Catholics 1 (it looks like a first edition) which I will sell for $5

    In the Religion category, I have:

  • Child's Bible History by Knecht for $3
  • The Story of the Church by TAN publishers for $15
  • All of the above books are in great condition!

    If you are interested in any of the above titles, just contact me with your name, email address and which book(s) you are interested in and we will arrange for shipping.

    Remember, you are purchasing used materials. To the best of my ability, I have fairly represented the above mentioned products. All sales are final.

    Comments, Feedback, Questions?

    Here's your chance to send them to me. Just click here and type away! I appreciate your taking the time to read this newsletter and provide me with charitable feedback!

    If you would like to see something in an upcoming issue, please feel free to let me know.

    Until next time, may God Bless you abundantly!