We were reflecting and it was this time back in 2009 that we began entertaining the possibility of coming to Texas to serve. Well at least Tony would have come to serve – we would have just followed him. He interviewed at three congregations, was offered two positions – one immediately upon the interview – in the Houston area, and the other one nearly a month later. He took the latter position and felt this one was where we were supposed to come and serve. And we’ve lived in College Station, TX since September 2009. For some people that seems like a little amount of time – for us, we’ve never stayed this long in one place EVER. Because music and church music can be such an in and out type of thing in many churches – it has always been rough to settle in – about the time we think we’re settled, something happens, and it is best that we be the ones that leave. For the first time, things seem to be going according to God’s plan and we are so very happy for that. Tony loves serving here, and the people seem to enjoy having him serve here as well.
Our first picture on the main Family page shows us with our dog, Tigger. Who is now dead.We have a new dog, Porthos, named after Captain Archer’s dog (Star Trek Enterprise TV Series): here is Porthos.
Things seem to be going really well again. When we moved here, we put Ryan in public school. We already knew that it might not work – but we were not prepared to jump into homeschool – we had some fears about that as well. But, after two horrific years in public school, Ryan being bullied constantly, issues rising up and constant barrage of things, Tony finally pulled the plug and brought Ryan home for 5th grade. Which turned out to be great. We made mistakes, but overall, things seemed better. Ryan used BJU, but that came to a screeching halt after only 2 weeks, and we had already tied ourselves up to a 6 month payment plan of $125 per month for this program and all the books. (we learn quickly). We did some looking around, almost threw in the towel, but then, after Tony did some extensive reading and research, he suggested we try this Charlotte Mason approach. I was scared to do this – but Tony reads a lot about curriculum and educational development planning, and so I trusted him.
We did not feel confident enough that first year to do it all on our own, so we found (happened into) My Father’s World. And we did Exploring Countries and Cultures. And we had a BLAST!!!!! This continued to weave a desire within us to not only do Charlotte Mason methods, but also to explore the Unit Study approach (thematic ideas crossing all areas of academics). So, the following year we did Dorian Holt’s Learning Adventures. And we had a blast – but it was probably more expensive than we thought it would be, to really make it come together… nevertheless, we had a great time of it. Both years were full of wonderful things. And we have some great books to show for all of our hard work and effort.
The next few pictures shows Ryan doing nature activities (we don’t do nature journals, we do nature, camping, he did a nature trek with family over summer vacation, and other nature things; cooking and exploring foods from other cultures and music (cello lessons, clarinet, violin) and trips to NASA with Dutch exchange brother, Mathijs, hanging out at the George Busch Library at home in C-Station, TX with exchange brother, Erik.
Then, after doing 5th and 6th grade at home, Ryan wanted to try school We put him in a Christian School. DISASTER! While Ryan made some friends, the school was NOT at all what I would view as Christian.
We ended up taking our son out of that school, and brought him back home to an environment that is better for him. I think things are going much better now – and he is starting to enjoy learning again We are behind in math (that is another story for another day) and probably behind on some of the other things – I’d rather be where we are than where we were… and we are only behind if we are following someone else’s schedule (and we are not). We plan to school year round at this point and he still has a few of his friends from the school experience.