We ended up Unschooling.

Library with books.
Library with books.
Photo by Stanislav Kondratiev on Unsplash

Education is important and essential to everyone. My wife and I got our education the traditionally accepted way — through the school system. We never would have thought that when we became a parents we would homeschool, but the more we read and researched, the more it resonated with us. The biggest reason my wife and I chose to homeschool our kids is because we want to give them the best chance at finding what they want to do in life. …

Your stopwatch as a new parent.

Goldfish looking away from camera.
Goldfish looking away from camera.
Photo by Gabriel P on Unsplash

As a new parent, there are many skills and techniques that you will need to pick up: diaper changes, bottle feeds, sleep routines for babies, etc. With all the new skills, you’ll find you also have new ways of measuring things, like time. Our sons taught us the hidden, productive value of snack time.

Goldfish are multi-purpose.

They can track time, hold your kids’ attention, and keep them full.

Using goldfish to buy me some time started with our first kid, but it’s something that still comes in handy. I avoid making the older son watch his younger brother (as much as I…

An intro to coffee for the non-coffee drinkers.

Close-up image of medium roast coffee beans.
Close-up image of medium roast coffee beans.
Photo by Anastasiia Chepinska on Unsplash

I wasn’t always a coffee drinker. I used to think people didn’t really need coffee to stay awake or alert, and they just weren’t trying hard enough to stay awake. I’m sorry. Please don’t hate me for my past, incorrect beliefs.

I’m not exaggerating when I say I’ve been a coffee fan for a while now. It started with getting my coffee made from Starbucks then progressed to Peet’s and Blue Bottle. (Don’t worry, I still get coffee from Starbucks— definitely not knocking it.) My coffee consumption evolved into me buying whole beans and manually grinding them. Thanks to my…

It just works for our family.

Open paperback book over grass and leaves.
Open paperback book over grass and leaves.
Photo by Annelies Geneyn on Unsplash

There wasn’t one particular reason we decided to homeschool our kids. We looked into different teaching styles and schooling methods before we felt comfortable with deciding how we wanted our kids to learn. We thought about what type of school or teaching methodology would best prepare our kids for the real world, and it just made sense for us to homeschool — more specifically, unschool.

Transitioning into unschooling from a traditionally schooled upbringing can be difficult but not impossible. By “traditional”, I mean the socially accepted structure of our school systems. The time invested in making the change, the mistakes…

Two thoughts that keep my positive outlook in check.

Photo by Szilvia Basso on Unsplash

I’m an optimist. I used to always look at the brighter side of things and ignore the alternative, because focusing on the negative seemed to be a waste of energy. Life showed me the error of my perspective on multiple occasions. Along the way, life experiences honed my views, and I’m no longer the reckless optimist I was when I was younger. The other side of things, when things don’t work out, is an important part of decision making and shouldn’t be ignored. Two thoughts have helped keep my optimism from getting too far ahead of me.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Being optimistic doesn’t…

Lack of common sense can be painful.

Two silly toy figures fighting each other.
Two silly toy figures fighting each other.
Photo by Frank Busch on Unsplash

Just like you, I’ve spent a lot of time learning. Every new day I get to see, I learn something I didn’t know or see things from a different perspective. It’s what I look forward to, and fortunately there’s so much in this universe that we don’t know about I won’t be running out of things to learn anytime soon.

With all the lessons I’ve learned, I always found it funny that the ones I remember most are the ones that caused me the most pain.

Metal monkey bars will burn you.

Sometimes it’s better to give up.

Growing up, I always had access to a…

Games can have a positive impact on your life.

Photo by Ryan Quintal on Unsplash

Playing video games is something I’ve grown up doing. I’m not sure if that puts me in the majority or minority, but they are an entertaining way to pass the time and play with my friends and family. I remember when playing video games as a kid was seen as anti-social, but I don’t think people can make the same claim as confidently as before.

Gamers had and still have a negative connotation as being lazy loners who don’t have social skills. The funny thing is that the gamers I know and play with regularly are great people who look…

Now stop looking for someone to give you permission.

Neon sign lit up with “Do Something Great” against a black backdrop.
Neon sign lit up with “Do Something Great” against a black backdrop.
Photo by Clark Tibbs on Unsplash

You don’t need anyone’s permission to succeed, especially mine. I’ve wasted too much time waiting for the right time to start projects that I cared about, because I was holding off until I was ready. My education subconsciously trained me to wait for that moment of readiness, but at some point it was just holding me back.

Looking back at my life and education, I realized that I was constantly waiting for someone else to tell me I was ready to move on and start the next level. From elementary school to high school, I learned that I couldn’t move…

Don’t make it more difficult than you have to.

Photo by Ross Findon on Unsplash

When writing and working on other projects, I have an uncanny ability to over-complicate things. Don’t get me wrong. I come up with a logical solution to problems that arise, but when I revisit my solution, I realize that I could have made my life easier by making a smaller change somewhere else.

Keeping things simple is something I try to live by, and it’s a work in progress. I get so excited that I have a solution that works, I get tunnel vision and just start plugging away at my solution. …

Software is meant to make things easier on you.

Photo by Aron Visuals on Unsplash

Always keep your working environment in context, because when you get into auto-pilot, it’s easy to forget when to re-take the controls. I easily get caught up in the software I use and constantly forget that it’s a tool to make things faster and more efficient. I have to repeatedly stop designing within the software, whether it’s coming up with the proper data structure or coming up with the correct graphic design solution. I have to remind myself to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. …

Roper Macaraeg

Writer of happiness and homeschooling. Spreading joy through writing and learning. Simple as that. :)

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store