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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

How Do I Help Provide Top Education for My Kids When I Can't Drive?

Almost two years ago we went through the process of determining the right educational choice for our family.  When I picked up my kids on the last day of school 2013, I remember having the thought that I was glad I'd have three months to break them of all the habits they had developed over the school year and correct any misinformation they had learned before sending them back in the fall.  And, I was glad they'd have a short break from the daily influence of negative peers.  Then, I heard a still, small voice say, "Why do they have to go back?"  That led us to considering other educational options for the first time in our lives.  I spent the next few weeks doing a ton of research and we came to a consensus as a family that since our daughter would be changing schools and starting Middle School in the fall, she would be changing to an online school instead.  Our son completed third grade at public school and then started online school in fourth.

We have been nothing but thrilled with our choice.  I have watched my daughter blossom into a young woman who can express herself in wonderful ways.  I have been thrilled at the opportunity for her to take Gifted/Talented Language Arts and Literature and challenge herself to continue to work hard and grow.  I have seen her computer skills improve exponentially as she takes an Educational Technology course and then uses what she has learned for projects in other courses.  It warms my heart to watch her feel comfortable discussing concerns about projects or lesson content with her teachers and for them to respond with respect.  I am thrilled with the elective courses and just wish she could take them all.

4th Grade requires a bit more hands on work with me, which I love when he is in the mood to work.  When he is not, I am thankful for flexibility and the ability to send him to rest until he gets in the mood to work.  I love the ability to schedule "school time" at a time that works for us and take breaks as needed.

I have a question for all of you out there.  I'm really struggling with the inability to drive and help get my children to all the great opportunities out there for them.  We can "walk" to many places like the library, YMCA, etc, but many require a vehicle.  Our city bus only runs until about 3:00pm, so that eliminates evening activities.  The local YMCA holds group sports at a local school and although we can walk to the YMCA, they don't bus their athletes to practices or games.  We now live within driving distance of some amazing opportunities for museum programs, fine art programs, volunteer opportunities, etc, but have no real way to get there.  I even just saw opportunity for an audition to be in a musical, but can't offer that to my daughter because I can't promise her transportation.

In case you were wondering, the adult driver in this house is frequently unavailable at those needed times because of work.  This has brought me to probably my greatest feeling of loss since the accident.  I have found ways to  make adaptations for the majority of my activities, but I cannot figure out how to provide these amazing opportunities for my children when I can't drive.  Help!  Any one out there have any great ideas?  Maybe I just need to hire a driver.  Do you think my driver could be like Morgan Freeman in Driving Miss Daisy?

Let me know what great ideas you have.  I don't want my children to miss out on great opportunities just because I can't drive.

In the midst of everything, I'm still trying to remember to be thankful every day.

"A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all other values."

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Thanksgiving for today
Connections Academy
Church Bus
Power chair