Reviews: Mommy-Improvement Classes, Books, Blogs, and Podcasts

Please tell me if you can relate. When I went to college, I learned about a wide array of topics. I learned about philosophy, sociology, calculus, statistics, anthropology, health, communication, biology, ecology, English, technical writing, Brit Lit., education, psychology, special education, speech pathology, audiology, medical terminology, economics, linguistics and more. Apparently I did well and was blessed to be summa cum laude in them, but that’s not the point. I am eternally grateful for the opportunity to have taken these classes, and I never regret them….but I wish I had more training on how to do some seemingly basic things, like run a household. It is much tougher than I thought. Can you relate?

I know how to study and learn some pretty random stuff (like the tiny muscles of the head and neck that are used for speech), but I have trouble making my house run smoothly. I know how to plan and do some big things (e.g., retreats at church, mother’s group, write a book, organize a co-op with help from friends), but keep my house organized and clean?? How can that possibly be accomplished??

Fortunately, in the last couple of years, I have been forced to think about these things. I say fortunately because not everyone can stay home with their children when they are small, and I am blessed to do so. For now, this is what God is asking of me. Being home full-time, while homeschooling, means that organization and schedules are extremely important. It’s like sink or swim, and too often, I am treading water just trying to keep up. Slowly, over the last few years, I am gaining some skills….but honestly, I have a lot to learn.

If you’ve made the transition from an education focused and career focused life, juggling life at home is quite the culture shock, especially if you are homeschooling.

If you find yourself in that situation, here are some resources that I love that might help you. They can help you think about the value of motherhood, how to structure your day, how to organize your home, and how to come up with routines that make your house flow more smoothly. It’s a lot of information; this is like a couple of semesters worth of assignments if you browse through the blog posts, sign up for courses, listen to many hours of podcasts, and read the books.

Power of Moms

Listen to the many free podcasts with insightful ideas about how to be a good wife and mother. Support them by purchasing a book or a class. They have years of podcasts that you can enjoy. The classes are expensive, but the books are affordable. Listen to the podcast Quiet Time 101. It is life changing if you don’t have quiet time in your day.

Money Saving Mom

Crystal Paine is a very successful enterpreneur, wife, mom of 3, and home educator. She has publicly explained that she was homeschooled. She has sold bestselling books, like Say Goodbye to Survival Mode. She grew up in a large family, and learned how to stretch a dollar. She shares her “money saving tips” to moms on her blog, but she branched out to helping moms become more organized, goal centered, and focused. She’s been on national programs, like the Today Show, and is very generous with what she earns. She gives away profits from a lot of what she does to support charities; all of the profits from at least one of her books went to charity. She is a strong Christian.  She has on-line classes that are very reasonably priced. She has 14-day courses on “Make Over Your Mornings” and “Make Over Your Evenings.”

It’s Here…Somewhere

Alice Osborne wrote an amazing book called It’s Here Somewhere. You can find it used on Amazon at a reasonable price. If you want to tackle your entire house and be more organized, her book is a great resource. I heard about it from Power of Moms–they have a podcast interview with the author. If you want help getting your kitchen organized, I highly recommend the on-line video course, It’s Here Somewhere in the Kitchen. Through the videos, she takes you step by step to make your kitchen more efficient. Alice Osborne raised many children (I think 7). She learned from experience how much better life is when you don’t have too much stuff around. She has gone across the country helping people with small and large homes streamline the process of running a household.

Seasons of a Mother’s Heart

The book, Seasons of a Mother’s Heart is written by Sally Clarkson, a veteran Christian homeschool educator, speaker, and writer. Most of all, she is a wife, mother, and child of God. This book is like a breath of fresh air if you want to find value in your life as a home educator.


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