E-journal December 27, 2007

Inspiring Videos

Our issue about The Blessing Jar prompted quite a few friends to share their blessings. Your responses made me want to share this video with you again, because watching it always makes me aware of how many blessings I have. It is about Team Hoyt, a father-son marathon team. It was always Rick Hoyt's dream to run a marathon, but he was born with muscular dystrophy. So his father figured out a way for Rick's dream to come true. Bless yourself by watching their amazing video, GO HERE>>

Here's another video I thought was interesting and fun. GO HERE>>

And last, but not least, this video brought tears to my eyes because of the obvious joy the horse has in performing her dressage pattern. I love horses and showed them for years, so this video was a delight for me to watch. GO HERE>>

Help! Where Do I Start?

In this week's e-journal, I thought I'd share a letter I recently wrote in response to an e-mail from a man I met at a business conference who is interested in home schooling his daughter. I know everyone is thinking about Christmas right now, but maybe the holiday break would be a good time to re-evaluate the direction of your home school.

Dear Ellyn,

My wife and I want to home school our daughter Brianna and don’t know where to start. I'm wondering if you can recommend the best in home education, either websites, groups, organizations, correspondence/umbrella schools, study material, networks, etc. Your insight is very much appreciated.


Hi Michael,
 Here's my initial answer to your question about home schooling. I will tend to overload you with information because it's a subject I'm passionate about. But here goes....
I'm not sure exactly what you have in mind for your daughter, but I suspect you are the kind of person who wants to go more of  a non-traditional route and make home schooling more a way of life rather than just a block of academic teaching time in your day.
W. B. Yeats once wrote, "Education is not the filling of a bucket, but the lighting of a fire." That's the philosophy I've aspired to practice when I home schooled my children—not just trying to fill their heads with information, but trying to light fires within them by nurturing what I saw  inside of them that made them who they are.
I guess I say all that to warn you that my advice will probably be different from the advice you'll get from others who are just focused on the academic aspect of home education. Because I believe that the skills and knowledge that help you navigate through life as an adult are not necessarily the skills and knowledge that you learn in school, I will tend to advise people to focus less on academics and more on life skills, using academics as merely a foundation for the life skills.
For example, one thing that I never learned in all my schooling, including four years of graduate school, was "street smarts" about being an entrepreneur. Although knowing reading, writing, math and some of the other subjects were essential to laying a foundation for becoming "street smart," I learned the most vital things about making money and starting and running successful businesses outside of an academic setting. Usually my lessons were from the school of hard knocks or through some form of mentorship.
So I tried to design a course of study for my boys organized around leaving out "everything I learned in school that I found later to be a complete waste of time" and putting in "everything I learned in school that has been generally acknowledged as useful to an adult." This included relational skills, financial skills, time management skills, etc.
I believe that there are basically 7 areas to our lives: spiritual, emotional, mental, physical, financial, relational, and the relationship to time. The more I learn to navigate successfully in those seven areas, the more "free," productive, successful, and joyful I become as a person. So I tried to make the knowledge and skills necessary for each freedom the underlying structure for the way I home schooled my boys.
Probably the best place for you to start is to contact the home schooling organizations in your state and learn what the laws are there and how people are managing to conform to the guidelines and still be eclectic in their home schooling. Some states have more stringent laws than others concerning home schooling, but once you know what the law requires, you can tailor your course of study to meet the requirements and still have "wiggle room" to do it in a way that best suits your family.
 Next, it's just a matter of deciding what your end result will be. What kind of a person do you picture your daughter to be at the end of her home schooling with you? What does she know? What does she value? What is she gifted at? How is she with relationships, with money, with the use of her time, etc.? Once you know that, you can reverse engineer the experience you want your whole family to have with home schooling.
In the early grades, most of what a child needs to know can be taught in the course of everyday living, particularly if your child already has a curious mind like your daughter does and your family already do a lot of interesting things together like yours does. It's not until middle and high school that you might need to conform to a more traditional course of study.
Next, I recommend five books to get you started thinking:
Homeschooling for Excellence

Dumbing Us Down

Learning All the Time

Guerilla Learning

If You Want Your to Be Rich and Happy, Don’t Go to School
Sorry for writing an essay. Hope this helps.

Ellyn, WOW! Thank you!

Your passion is evident and inspiring.  I know Briana's mind will blaze in a home school setting.  Of the little bit of research I've read, it almost makes it a crime if I put her in an institutional school.  Heather and I both like your approach... educated by life, not life by education.  A kind, street smart, fearless, independent thinker is what we want.

All the best,



Blessings Jar. Here is a jar identical to the one we've used for years and years. It's stood the test of time and it stays in our kitchen on top of the microwave all year long, so it's easy for us to remember to write down a blessing and put it in the jar. This jar also makes a great gift. If you don't know what a Blessings Jar is, then GO HERE>>

Juice Plus

I want to spotlight a product I've found that has made a real difference in my health. It's called Juice Plus+.

I've always been concerned that my family was never getting enough fruits and vegetables because a lot of times, in spite of my best intentions, breakfast wound up being something quick like cereal and lunch wound up being something even quicker, like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I went through periods where I would try and make the meals ahead, but that only lasted a short while. Then I tried getting a juicer, and that lasted an even shorter while because it took three times as long to get the fruits and vegetables ready for the juicer and then to clean it afterwards than it took to make and drink the juice. And I always got stuck cleaning the strainer because no one else wanted to do it.

Then a friend recommended Juice Plus+ to me. It has 17 fruits, vegetables, and grains in capsule form. Somebody has already done the juicing for me, then dried the juice in such a way that all the enzymes from the raw produce is in the capsules, and--big bonus--they are carbohydrate free.

Being the skeptic I am of any kind of health supplement, and wary as I am of any multi-level marketing business, I decided to give Juice Plus+ four months to prove its claims.

What did I experience? More energy, better skin, hair and nails, and better sleep. And did I mention that I had more energy. A friend of mine started on them at the same time and experienced significant improvement in a long-standing chronic disease.

So that's my story about Juice Plus+. It is an easy, affordable way to make sure you and your children get all the fruits and vegetables they need. And Juice Plus+ even has a children's health program that lets you get the capsules free for children between the ages of six and fifteen. Plus, there is a family plan to make Juice Plus+ even more affordable.

Another bonus is that Juice Plus+ makes a great home business that Moms can run to make money while they're home schooling.

So, check it out by going HERE>>

hooling and home life.


Webpages about the importance of reading great books and booklists for children of all ages
te are completed:
Webpages about choosing teaching materials

Webpages about charting a course through high school

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Be a part of our Home Business Incubator!

At Home School Marketplace we are not just about home schooling. We also want to encourage and support you in developing home centered income.

One of the ways we want to do this is by providing you with the opportunity for involvement in businesses that we and other home schooling families develop.

So for years we have thought about creating a home business incubator that home schooling families can participate in.

What is a Business Incubator?

What is a business incubator? A business incubator is a collection of resources designed to help businesses become established and sustainable.

U.S. statistics show that business incubators increase the survival rate of start-ups from 35 percent to 87 percent. This is very, very good news, considering 90% of small businesses fail within their first five years.

We want to create businesses that allow home schooling families to participate in their development and share in their future profits.

Let me assure you that we are not talking about multi-level marketing and we’re not trying to recruit you into becoming some sort of sales force for an existing business.

We are talking about you helping build a traditional business from the ground up. Not only do we have several really good business ideas that we’d like to build a team around, but there are many of you who have some great business ideas who could really use a business incubator.

If you would like to participate in one of our Business Incubators, please GO HERE NOW>>>

CLICK HERE to listen to a teleconference explaining the concept and our vision for a Home School Business Incubator.

Home Business Resources

Let Your Mortgage Make You Rich.
A friend in my internet marketing group discovered this technique for paying down your mortgage incredibly quickly without making an extra payment or refinancing. Using her method, people are cutting a 30 year mortgage down to eight or nine years. It’s true; without extra payments or refinancing – you could save tens of thousands of dollars - even hundreds of thousands - on what you pay for your home. And the best part is that the book comes with a money-back guarantee. If you don't save more on your mortgage than the book costs in the first 18 months of using the techniques, you'll get your money back.
Find out more about this money-saving book NOW!

Building the Business of Your Dreams
(8 CD Set)
I've had requests for just the business portion of the From Home School to Home Business Seminar, so have developed a set of the business CDs from that set. It contains 8 CDs and includes sessions on The Entrepreneurial Mind, Multiple Streams of Home Income, Discovering Your Ideal Life and Ideal Business (2 CDs) , Developing a Business Plan (2 CDs), and The Importance of Business Relationships. Plus, there is a very important and insightful interview on Redeeming the Marketplace. Find out about this life-changing set of CDs HERE>>

SALE PRODUCTS! Limited Quantities
30% Off! We only have a few of each of these left.

We have the following WIN books available: The Reluctant Writer, Comprehensive Story Writing, Writing Man 1 & 2, and WIN Twin.

For more information and to place an order,

Home School Resources

I Saw the Angel in the Marble

With over 4,000 copies sold in just a few months, I Saw the Angel in the Marble is becoming a home schooling best seller!

This book represents the best of 15 years of Elijah Company articles. Find our more HERE>>

Turning Hearts: Davis Seminar Set (8 CDs)

The Best of Chris and Ellyn Davis, this set contains seminars given by Chris and Ellyn Davis of The Elijah Company at home schooling conventions. The set contains all of the favorites that home schoolers ask for over and over. People have told us this set of CDs changed their lives. Find out more about them HERE>>

Angel in the Marble/Davis Seminars Set
Order a combination of I Saw the Angel in the Marble and the Davis Seminars CDs HERE>>

From Home School to Home Business
(14 CD Set)

If you missed one of our From Home School to Home Business Conferences, you missed a great time.People who have attended tell us that it changed their lives—not only in the area of home schooling, but also in the area of creating their own sources of home income.This set is huge and filled with useful and encouraging information about how to be successful at home schooling and at home business! Find out more about this life-changing set of CDs HERE>>

Building the Home School of Your Dreams

Building the Home School of Your Dreams is a 6 CD set taken from the From Home School To Home Business Seminar and features sessions by Chris Davis and Mary Hood. Find out more HERE>>

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