Mom Culture – Charlotte Mason Approach

by Darla on February 16, 2008

in Favorite Homeschool Blogs

Charlotte also encouraged us moms to keep learning and exploring things that we’re interested in. One of the Parents Review articles (Vol. 3, No. 2) challenged:

“Is there not some need for ‘mother culture’? But how is the state of things to be altered? So many mothers say, ‘I simply have no time for myself!’ ‘I never read a book!’ Or else, ‘I don’t think it is right to think of myself!’ They not only starve their minds, but they do it deliberately, and with a sense of self-sacrifice which seems to supply ample justification. There are, moreover, unfortunately, only too many people who think that sort of thing so lovely that public opinion appears to justify it. But does public opinion justify anything? Does it justify tight-lacing—or high heels—or bearing-reins for horses? It can never justify anything which leads to the ‘Oh, it’s only mother’ tone in any young person.

“That tone is not the right one. But can it be altered? Each mother must settle this for herself. She must weigh things in the balance. She must see which is the most important—the time spent in luxuriously gloating over the charms of her fascinating baby, or what she may do with that time to keep herself ‘growing’ for the sake of that baby ’some day,’ when it will want her even more than it does now.”

Each March as I approach the season of renewing I find myself in a state of blah.  Everything is blah.  My children go through the same stage.  For many years I thought it was the curriculum.  Now it is easy to recognize as the very time that I should be implementing ‘Mom Culture” as described above.

Last year I started water coloring, blogging with photos, trying to figure out how to add blogging to our list of school work and tennis.  I really enjoyed the water colors so then I started learning how to draw.  My pictures are starting to be recognizable.  A day at the beach provided enough inspiration that I drew the experience on paper.  My husband said it is worthy of framing.  What a compliment.  It made me feel really good.  Tennis lessons have gone so well that I’m now able to play doubles with ladies in our community.  I’m not physically fit but it is has been so much fun that I really enjoy the exercise.

This year my yen has been to go back to school but my current responsibilities don’t allow much time for formalized studies but certainly I could study on my own with a mentor.  It struck me that I should pull out the conference cds of a Thomas Jefferson Education class that they spoke of this very thing.  The CDs refreshed my memory along with the notes that I took during the class.  Ah so my new mom culture adventure is to dive into educating myself.

My hope is that it will inspire my children to dig into their own interests and move their education forward.  We could all use a bit of inspiration at the moment.  Diving into water colors had that affect last spring.  Everyone walked by and wanted to do that.  Blogging, How can I have my own blog.  That looks like fun.  Tennis well we are all playing.

I’m feeling inspired.  The books and materials are in the mail and as I approach a new phase, I find myself getting ready for the time to sink my teeth into learning.  Time to dejunk and declutter for the new phase.

My dear husband has a business trip scheduled and while initially I thought it was going to be too expensive for us to go along the inspiration came to look in a new place for plane tickets.  I was so excited that I was late getting to church.  A trip that seemed next to impossible is now not only possible but pending dh vacation approval we are going home for a visit 6 months earlier than we planned.  A side benefit of our trip is that we will jump start our learning for next year’s studies by taking a car trip across the US.

Mom culture really works.  Take a leap of faith and a few minutes of quiet time with your journal to brainstorm all the things you would like to do or learn.  Sometimes 10 or 15 minutes each day is all it takes to start a dream along the path of fulfilment.   May you find the inspiration that you are looking for at this time.

I can’t wait to start on this new path.  Now all I need is a mentor.  That will take more time and prayer.

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