Complicating Simple

Here’s how the conversation went with my husband earlier today…

“I’m afraid I complicate things,” I said.

“No, Really?” he laughed. “But first you simplify your complicated, then that seems too easy, so you complicate it again, and add layers and extra buttons, and some fancy widgets, then you scrap the whole thing and go for simple again, but only if it can be in a binder with lots of tabs.”

And he kept going. I was laughing and crying, and begging him to stop, and he was still going on and on with umpteen variations of this little dance I do with crazy.

See, I tried to make a separate blog for our Homeschooling adventure that started in earnest, I mean, free of the curriculum from our school district – Yesterday. I was worried that there were people who like our Country Kids website and Facebook, who wouldn’t like that we are trying this thing called Homeschool. I don’t know why I worry. Probably because I like to Complicate Simple.

It would mean an entirely separate Blog and Facebook and then where would I put pictures of the crazy things my kids create? Already, one day in, I’m sorry I tried that. I have enough on my plate with getting our lessons off the ground. We have baby goats coming in a couple of days – or weeks – it’s sort of hard to tell. New baby chicks will be here any day. And my nine-year old and I are learning about Europe in the Middle Ages, Cathedrals, Castles and King Arthur while making bread. I need simple. I don’t need to Complicate Simple.

This evening, my boys gave me a great example of the fact that they get it – that I pack on too much sometimes. We were getting ready to do the Letter of the Week with Bean. We are up to the Letter B, having just started this last week. As I was out of the room, the boys helped fill the box with all sorts of B-Related things, with many a giggle between them.

Let’s see: Berry strawberry Bars, gummy-Bears,  Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down the Bones, multiplication Bingo, Bicycle cards, a B decoration, Bouncing Ball, BrainQuest workbook, and a half-stick of Butter!

Scott suggested that maybe I don’t need a box. Maybe I could just pull out three things that start with the letter and, “But the Box is so much Fun,” I practically wailed. Big eyes, and a “Seriously?” face from my husband, and I’m realizing why I have such a clutter problem. Oh good heavens.

Perhaps, especially because we are doing homeschool, now would be a nice time to actually try to just be simple – not try to simplify simple with charts and lists and more white boards, but actually simplify. I don’t really know if I’m wired for that. It may cause more stress than anything else, like when I have a minute to relax, and I start stressing?

But, what made me cry for real was later, when I told my husband I wasn’t sure if I needed that additional blog to write about Homeschool, and I was thinking that might be another way to complicate things, he said:

“I can tell you that you are over-thinking homeschool, or the house, or de-cluttering, or the garden plan, or even the kids; but I can’t tell you that you are over-thinking your writing. That is your heart and that is where you live, and if you need to have it broken down into 87 categories that work for you, or wind it up into one, you are the only one who can call that shot. Half of what makes you you is this dance you do, and the way your mind works, and the jumps and starts you get over things you care about – the way little things catch you off guard and make you think of poetry. I could never tell you to change anything about this part of you.”

He makes me swoon, he really does. And I know I see poetry and beauty in every little thing. I also complicate the heck out of the simplest things, sometimes for a poetic flair, sometimes just because I don’t know how to do it any other way.

So, I’m asking… What are the things you do to help you stay focused on simple? Not the 27 things you do (that would be my list) – the one or two that help you breathe? I’m very curious to know.

And with that, Thank You and Good-night. I’m off to collapse a blog I started yesterday. I think I’ll try to keep it all here at Country Kids.


gorgeous photo from here

3 thoughts on “Complicating Simple

  1. Hello Liesl,

    Firstly thanks for checking out my blog. I enjoyed your comment.

    Secondly, my hat off to you! I greatly admire families who choose to home school! So, pat yourself on the back. Sounds like you are doing a wonderful job.

    Thirdly,…Simple. Ah, how do we arrive there? In this day and age when we have so many electronic gadgets that are meant to SIMPLIFY our life, yet we are more stressed out than ever. Hmmmm
    I can assuredly relate to what you describe. I second guess myself constantly over some things, because I am wanting to choose the perfect solution, yet am not confident that I will know what that is. Hmmmm

    My only solution to my chaotic thinking is GOD. I spend time mediating on Him, on learning to hear His voice guide me. Because when I let Him guide me, it is always SIMPLE. Breathe Him in, peace comes.

    Peace to you and yours,

  2. Oh, I love this! Simple? What is this word of which you speak? Does any homeschool mama know that term? None that I know! 😉 Seriously, though, I have learned to only add into my schedule the things I can do WITHOUT stressing. This might mean that after the ‘broccoli’ part of school, we can only add in pleasure reading and our homeschool group. At other seasons, this may include theater—which makes us crazy busy, but isn’t stressful because we all love it so much. Knowing my limits and acting accordingly; that is how I simplify.

    Thank you for the follow. I look forward to exploring your world here. Grace and peace to you!

    1. “What is this word of which you speak?” Thank you for that! We are just learning what we are doing here, and I think we will spin in circles a little bit, which will be fine. I’m wanting to follow the interests of my boys, and that makes for a popcorn popping or fireworks display sort of learning curve. Oh, I like that!

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