A Little Ray of Sunshine

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Three Sisters

Actually, there are four, but one isn't involved in this. Yet. They are all within five years of age, I think. All musicians, we all played in orchestras together as children. Three of the four, violin, viola, and 'cello, are married. Violin sister has one son, and expects her second child this summer. Viola and 'cello expect their first babies within a month of violin's. (They have some younger siblings, too, but the oldest of these is some eight years younger.)
I was chatting with 'cello. We've worked together, played together, and I called her up to see if she were interested in playing in the ensemble I'm putting together. (She is.) She and her two sisters have decided to homeschool. She tells me this because she knows (of course, we've known each other since we were children) that I was homeschooled. Everyone likes positive reinforcement. They are going to take turns. None of them have much money, and none are sure they can afford to stay home. But if they can get different work schedules, between the three (and the other sister, too, if she marries and has children, and she probably will, the family is LDS) they can cover their children all the time.
'Cello sister works right now as a lunch lady, and a music teacher in the elementary after school strings program. She hated public school, and she hates what she sees happening to the children she sees there. Her sisters all work in the same strings program, and all agree.
I bring this up because it occurs to me that it is another option for those who can't afford to homeschool. These days, the low-pay jobs many folks are stuck in require widly varying workweeks. If one mother can get Monday and Tuesday off, another Wednesday and Thursday, and the third, Friday and Saturday, and at least one father get a Sunday, then the children are covered. Ideal situation? Certainly not, but it's better than the alternatives.
"Keep in touch." I told her. "We're homeschooling our children, too." (I know her folks, with some kids still in the public schools, are going to see three of their four eldest's decision as a condemnation of their choices, at best. They'll all need encouragement.)
"At least I can be sure my children get a better education than I did." She said.


  • At 11:22 PM, March 30, 2006, Blogger CrazyJo said…

    I wonder what will happen if they start disagreeing on what to teach the children. It's an interesting idea, but I know that if some of my sisters tried to teach my children I'd have some serious issues with part of their belief system. I guess it would still be better than the public school system, though.

  • At 11:04 AM, March 31, 2006, Blogger BoysMom said…

    I don't know, but I doubt that'll happen in this case. These gals are all really close, very strict LDS (all but the youngest of the four did a mission before marrying, all their husbands did, of course). This is a very, very LDS town (why I jokingly call it Mormonville, we have a higher percentage of LDS than Salt Lake City does). The LDS are very good at keeping their people where they want them, and in general, the church has no problem with homeschooling. The majority of homeschoolers here are LDS, just as the general population is.

  • At 1:50 PM, March 31, 2006, Blogger Retired Geezer said…

    When my grandkids were pre-schoolers, I was amazed to find out how much my daughter (single parent) paid just to have somebody watch them when she worked.

  • At 2:32 PM, March 31, 2006, Blogger BoysMom said…

    Last time I checked, it was at least $500 a head for children under two for formal daycare. That would be at the six children per adult worker ratio, IIRC. (And how much care do those babies get? Seems like the caregiver would end up doing just diapers all day!)
    Didn't take long to figure out I'd have to have a pretty hefty salary to actually make anything after childcare, a second car, work clothes, taxes, and so on. I look at a lot of these working mothers (the married variety) and wonder if they realize they really aren't making anything, after they subtract all the costs of working.
    The whole situation is a lot worse for single parents.

  • At 7:32 PM, April 02, 2006, Blogger Arielle said…

    I think most of those working mothers don't realize they're not making anything - either that, or they have truly bought into the lie that one must have a "career" in order to be fulfilled in life. Let me tell you, none of my jobs ever left me feeling fulfilled the way being a mother does!


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