What is Charlotte Mason?

I have research homeschool curriculum for over 11 years.  Over the years I knew something  was off, knew that there was something I was looking for, knew that there was more to this so I just kept researching hoping to find it.  I either didn’t let it sink into my heart or just plain ignored the constant red flags that kept going off….  Ok maybe it was both.  Are you experiencing some of that too?

We start homeschooling.  Its new and shiny.  Its exciting.  It has a journey ahead that is full of challenges and sweet moments.  Is this it?  Its a journey with many pitstops and seasons along the way.  Is this it?

This weekend I attended the AFHE Convention 2018.  I finally went to Sonja Shafer’s workshops.  And it finally sank from my head to my heart.  Its not just school at home.  We are educating the whole child.  What does this mean?  Charlotte Mason says, “Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life.”  I encourage  you to go here to find more information.  They are the expertise in this subject.  However, I will say, this IS the difference to go from school at home and to homeschooling.  Its a life style of learning and offering simple but a buffet of knowledge for the children.

This household is about to embark our Charlotte Mason journey.  Its exciting!  Its also a huge step in developing not only our homeschool life but our lifestyle, period.  It is guiding us towards the direction of this journey I have always envisioned for us.

Come join us!

Posted in Homeschool | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dear Sonja,

Dear  Sonya Shafer,

You made me cry tonight. You made me cry tears of sadness AND tears of joy.

I have always had a love for learning.  I have always wanted and loved children.  Once upon a time I was told I would never have children of my own so, I went and completed a degree in Early Childhood Development. Thankfully, I WAS blessed with children and I homeschool them.

Or so I thought that’s what we have been doing, homeschooling for the last 11 years.  I realize now that we were just plowing through, just learning facts and just checking off boxes.   We’ve read classics and read alouds.  We have tried to learn art and a foreign language.  Something has always been off.

This weekend I attended AFHE Conference 2018 for the 11thtime.  This year was different in many ways.  My husband went with me for the first time.  My oldest son, 14, also attended for the first time.  I am now a mother of 4.  I attended all of your Simply Charlotte Mason workshops.  I mean this year is so different from years that I spent the whole conference in the exhibit hall shopping and socializing.

I came home tonight after the conference was over.  I cried as I went over my notes, the simplycm website and the simply cm ebooks. Tears of sadness of the last 11 years that I can not get back for my children.  Tears of sadness over the fights with my oldest over his schoolwork. Tears of sadness over the stressful days full of lists to be completed.  Tears of sadness over all the crazy calls to my husband while he’s at work because I was at my wits end.  But then, my sadness turned to joy.  Tears of joy because it doesn’t have to be the same any more.  Tears of joy because now, the way I’ve always known homeschool days were suppose to be, are about to be.  Tears of joy because I commit to the next 11 years being different than the last 11 years.

The next 11 years of homeschooling is going to be the way I always thought it was suppose to be. They are going to be what I envisioned but couldn’t grasp.  They are going to be filled with Art Appreciation, Music Appreciation, a Foreign Language, nature walks, copy work completed the correct way, Living Books and GOOD habits!  Will there be obstacles, challenges and struggles ahead? YES!  But also new way of thinking!

I can not wait to start our new year with new goals and new method of living not just schooling.  We will take it slowly, simply and one thing at a time.  I’m excited and I needed to tell you.  Thank you for being at the AFHE Convention.  I already know you have forever changed my life and my whole family’s life.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.



Stephanie Sackrider

Posted in Homeschool | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Aiden and Alyssa

Just a few seconds with two youngest kids…

A post shared by Dale Sackrider II (@dsackr) on

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Dance with me

Dance with me!

A post shared by Dale Sackrider II (@dsackr) on

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Alyssa Update: 7-5-18

My morning was better than yours! 😜 Alyssa has an eye doctor appointment today. We are praying for great progress. I don’t know that we’ll get a weight today but I think she is around 8lbs now…

update: one eye has improved very well, the other is ok but needs a follow up in 6 weeks. (dale via fb)

Posted in Nicu Journey | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Happy 9th Birthday, Aiden!

Happy 9th Birthday, Aiden! Next year is double digits!


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Surprise Visit

Look who came to visit Alyssa.  My cousin, Darin, his wife, Karen, and their youngest, Allie.  It was so nice to catch up.  Sure wish we lived closer. Love you guys!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Can Not Believe It

Can not believe we have 4 children now!!  But so loving it.  They all adore each other.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Sneaking a Kiss

Benefits of being home…  sneaking into see Daddy while he works in his office.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Alyssa Update: 5-17-18

Alyssa update: both momma and baby are doing fantastic! Alyssa is over 8lbs!!! She has ROP, but the last eye exam showed she is getting better. She had her tongue tied procedure last week and is recovering well. (dale via fb)


Posted in Nicu Journey | Tagged , , | Leave a comment