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Hi, I'm Amy.  I am a marathoner and former public school teacher turned homeschooling mother of four.  I’ve always loved a good adventure, believing that life is what you make of it. With four kids, three siblings and an insatiable curiosity for life I’ve had my fair share of adventure (albeit definitely more hectic and certainly more interesting at times than I had planned.).  We never set out to homeschool our kids, but you know what John Lennon said:  “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”  For years, we tried the local public schools, but unfortunately in the end, it wasn’t meeting our children’s needs and we had to search for alternative placements.  After researching all our options, we decided upon homeschooling.

This native New Yorker is married to a New Englander -- a die-hard Sox fan and computer science engineer that spends most of his days writing algorithms, many nights reading children’s books to at least one of the kids, and weekends exploring Washington and the surrounding areas.

I earned a B.S. in education from Baylor University and hold an active teaching certification.  I have taught both mainstream and special education classes in inner-city and suburban schools and have done extensive volunteer work in early childhood education.  Since reading, research and learning go hand-in-hand, I have worked to combine my love of libraries with my teaching degree.  While taking graduate courses in Library Science at CUNY Queens College, I worked as a reference librarian-trainee in a public library helping individuals of all ages with their information needs.  Previously as an undergraduate, I helped organize and run children and young adult reading programs, established a mentor reading program with young students in an inner-city school, and assisted librarians and patrons with various information-related tasks.

Eventually, I took a break from libraries and teaching in order to pursue something I had been interested in for many years: culinary school.  In 2002, I graduated with a culinary arts degree from The Institute of Culinary Education located in the Flat Iron District of Manhattan.  While there I studied under Anne Burrell, worked briefly at Le Cirque 2000, took classes with pastry chef and chocolatier Andrew Shotts, and volunteered for events with the James Beard Foundation in New York and The Hamptons.     

I love learning and exploring --whether it’s taking my children to a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill so they can learn about how our government works, running with our kids around the Washington Monument or the Pentagon grounds as part of a local fun run, taking a free online class courtesy of MIT OpenCourseWare, skiing in the Austrian alps on unmarked trails, leaving stacks of sheet pans, pots, and bowls all over our kitchen as the five of us create and test new recipes (our youngest usually prefers to taste test ensuring “quality control”), working on a house project while learning something from my mother, teaching special-needs children, developing black and white photos in a makeshift darkroom, or attending a lecture by  John Updike, Maurice Sendak or James Billington --  I love learning wherever it may take me.  My greatest adventure, however, is one that I could never have predicted and has been, by far, my most rewarding:  teaching my formerly non-verbal child with Autism how to read. 

 

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Hi, my name is Sarah and welcome to Home and Schooling.  This is a site I started with my sister, Amy, in 2014.  This is a place for us to share our thoughts, experiences and inspiration on all things related to the home and homeschooling.

I grew up in New York with my two older sisters and younger brother.  Our house was always a bit chaotic with four kids, but it was also filled with a lot love and laughter. Our father was a teacher and our mother was primarily a stay at home mom.  My dad was always working hard so that he could give us every opportunity possible while my mother did everything she could to stretch our families income.  She loved to cook and bake from scratch.  She sewed clothes and drapes, crocheted, hung wallpaper (then later removed wallpaper), painted (indoors and out), refinished floors and furniture, planted vegetable gardens and much more.  My father loved to tinker with everything imaginable (and he has almost every tool imaginable too!). There was always a project underway in our house and inevitability one of us kids was enlisted to help. 

I attended both college and graduate school in New York as well.  I received my B.S. in Mathematics and Computer Science with a minor in Art.  Shortly afterwards, I completed my Masters in Library and Information Science at St. John’s University.  I then worked as a librarian at a couple of public libraries. Finally in 2004, I ventured out of New York and moved to Washington D.C. to become a government librarian. 

That chapter of my life was short lived because it was in Virginia that I met my husband and within two and a half years, we were married, with a baby and living in Massachusetts.  A year later we were back in Virginia and by 2010, I was homeschooling my daughter.  Her education started simplely since she was in preschool, but it grew quickly.  In no time at all, I was teaching her how to read and she was learning arithmetic.  By kindergarten things were going so well, that my husband and I decided to keep her home, thus officially embarking on our homeschooling adventure.  

In 2012, our family relocated from the east coast to the Pacific Northwest.  Currently, I reside with my husband and three children (born in 2007, 2009 and 2014) in the beautiful state of Washington.   My interests are cooking gluten free/dairy free meals (we’re a family full of allergies as well!), baking, painting, drawing, writing, running and organizing.

I have a great passion for homeschooling and absolutely love the lifestyle and flexibility that comes with it.  We’ve had so many great experiences in just these four years of homeschooling that I can not wait to see what the future holds.

We hope to post several days a week, so please come back to visit us frequently.  And don’t hesitate to share your own thoughts and experiences; we would love to hear from you!

 

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Picture of Sarah of Home and Schooling

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