Book and $25 Amazon giveaway: The Homeschool Experiment

This weekend I have a really fun giveaway. The Homeschool Experiment is a novel written by Charity Hawkins. It tells the story of a mom who has just decided to homeschool her three children. The only problem is, she has no idea what she’s doing.

I have to tell you, I wasn’t sure how the concept of this book might work. I don’t tend to read much fiction these days, and I’d certainly never read fiction about a homeschooling mom. However, I found this book to be a delight. Within five pages I was laughing out loud. Within ten I was nodding over wisdom being shared by the friends of this new homeschooler. And within twenty I was sure this novel was well worth my time.

Whether you’re a veteran homeschooler like me, or someone just dipping your toes into the water of homeschooling, this book will make you laugh and nod and feel like you’re not alone in the journey. Between laughs, don’t be surprised if you also pick up some new homeschooling (and mothering) ideas.

Now here’s the giveaway part– and this is extra fun! This weekend I’m giving away two gift packets each containing a copy of this book and a $25 Amazon gift card. You can enter the drawing THREE times:
1. Comment below and tell me the best mothering advice you’ve ever gotten. (Mine was from my mom: “Take one contraction/minute/day at a time.”)
2. ‘Like’ or ‘Share’ this post on Facebook using the button below this post, then comment again and tell me you did so.
3. Share the link to this post on twitter using the button on this post, then comment again and say you did so.

I’ll be selecting two winners sometime on Tuesday!


  1. I just heard this last night, and it’s marriage advice, rather than mothering advice, but a friend of mine shared this: “Fight naked.” It made me laugh, but also think that fights would be pretty short. Or entirely avoided.

  2. I’ve liked Owlhaven on FB, but not seeing the button on this particular post. Maybe my browser is blocking it?

  3. Stephanie says:

    “Momma knows best” It is great to listen to experts advice, but in the end listen to your momma intuition.

  4. Somewhere I read about a mom who said when you hug your children, never be the first to let go. Makes for some great long hugs 🙂

  5. Don’t compare your children to other children and don’t compare yourself to other parents. Love your children the way they are and love yourself, too!

  6. Liked your post on Facebook 🙂

  7. “Liked on FB”

  8. Tweeted 🙂

  9. Tweeted (and now Following, too):)

  10. “parenting is the hardest thing you will ever do, but it is also the most worthwhile” My best friend’s mother told me that while I was expecting my first child.

  11. I liked you post on facebook!

  12. I’m a mother of 3 that has recently decided to homeschool in the fall. My two big kids (7 & 9) have been attending public school. The best mommy advice I’ve gotten so far is “choose your battles wisely and make sure you win.” This was given to help with our Chinese 3 year old spicy girl. It was a great reminder and helped our relationship a lot.

  13. Wow – best piece of mothering advice, huh…probably the best was something along the lines of enjoy the kids, because they grow up so fast. That sounds like a fun book!

  14. I’ve liked on Facebook! This novel sounds great!

  15. Some of the best parenting advice I remember came from a book called How to Talk so Kids will Listen and listen so kids will talk. The book seems to have disappeared from my shelves now, I must have lent it out and never got it back, but it made a huge difference when the kids were toddlers. I don’t don’t which thing to pick out – perhaps the one about accepting a child’s feelings even while not approving the behavior.

  16. My mother in law told me early on to relax, which goes against my personality. It’s definitely covers a multitude of sins, though, when I don’t get worked up over the small things.

  17. I liked the blog post.

  18. Best advice: go to sleep! 😉

  19. The best parenting advice was given to me 19 years ago by my friend’s mother when I was in college, was a new mom, and was stressing over the house. She told me that I would have to choose my priorities because nobody can do it all. And choose I did… to be the best mom to my little girl that I could possibly be. Also, I shared the link to your contest on my facebook.

  20. The best advice I was given was, “enjoy it.”. Sometimes, it’s easy to get caught up in what needs to be done, it can be easy to forget that kids are fun!

  21. Best parenting advice was to “be there” as much as humanly possible. These kids manage to grow even when I turn my back for half a second.

  22. Liked on FB.

  23. When I was in the midst of our fourth adoption and I was overwhelmed at parenting four children with special needs and wondering could I really do it, my girlfriend shared some advice she’d gotten: “God doesn’t call the equipped. He equips those He calls.” That’s gotten me through many a rough spot in the last 12 months. I just have to rest in the fact as flawed and inadequate as I am, He is not and ultimately these children are His.

  24. I liked it on Facebook 🙂

  25. I liked this on Facebook.

  26. I think the best advice I got was about nursing, but also about life. I was expecting our first child and went to a nursing class at the hospital. The nurse teaching said that she has so many Moms say they are going to ‘try it and see how it goes’. She then said that if you don’t stick with it for at least 6 weeks you haven’t really tried – it takes that long to work out the kinks. I am so grateful for that advice – it got me through the first horrible weeks when I was bleeding, and it was AWFUL. I just kept thinking, 6 weeks, and then I can quit. But one day I realized it had been 6 weeks, and it really had worked out. I now have 5 kids and nursed them all – and am still grateful for that advice, which I apply to many things – make sure you have really done your best before you decide it isn’t working out!

  27. When your kids are speaking – look at them. They will instantly realize how important they are when you focus your attention on them. I love that because so many times, I am busy doing something else when my kids are trying to tell me something and I fail to take the time to stop and fully listen.

  28. Following/Liked on Facebook too! 🙂

  29. I’d love to read this book!! The best advice I’ve received is “be yourself”! Don’t always be comparing the way you do things to the way that others do them. Be yourself and enjoy life!

  30. A few different phrases have proven to be very helpful…”The days are long but the years are short,” “This too shall pass,” and “Always be in the room” (e.g. be the mom to carpool, do something in the room while the kids are playing, etc. b/c you can learn so much about them as they interact with their friends and siblings).

  31. Hmm. I am annoyed by a lot of the typical advice – “enjoy them while they’re young” – stated by people who have no idea what it’s like to adopt a 1, 2, and 3 year-old at the same time when you’re not ultimately a huge preschooler fan, and then struggle a lot with “liking” one of the kids, let alone wanting to be his mother most of the time. But hey, we’re doing ok. It’s just hard to love that kind of flippant advice. Anyway…let me think. Likely our social worker, who sees us every few weeks until the adoption is finalized, has been the most encouraging and helpful, and is often encouraging us to “trust our instincts”, which makes me feel like she trusts us to keep doing our best (and that our best is likely not too far off the mark).

    • I was in your same shoes once, and when ladies would tell me to “enjoy it because it goes so fast”, I would reply, “promise?” I didn’t think we would ever come out on the other side. 11years later, here we are. Still having challenges and difficulty, but those early years were so hard! Hang in there!

  32. Courtney says:

    When I had my twins(my first children) my mother in law told me not to worry about cleaning the house all the time, but to enjoy my little ones whenever I could. Doing that has helped me to appreciate how fleeting those early years are.

  33. I was told “Millions of mothers have raised smart, successful, good kids – no worries, you can too!”

  34. AP classes are overrated, enjoy high school :-).

  35. Best mothering advice hmmm. Still thinking that over but here is the best advice Ipicked up at a mhomeschool conference. ” When God tells you to do something, Don’t tell your family.” Meaning that they will try to talk you out of it. This has applied to motherhood many times for me as my family thinks I have to many children. I have six gasp.

  36. Don’t wake a sleeping baby.

    And, your kids haven’t read the books, those books are for the average child, and your children are special, they are yours.

    Pray, pray, repeat.

  37. “It’s all just a phase.”

  38. This too shall pass!! : )

  39. “Don’t forget that the living room/yard/holiday is made for the child and not the child for the living room/yard/holiday.”

  40. Shared on FB!

  41. “If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.”

  42. Every day is a new opportunity to start fresh, learn from mistakes, and delight in your children!

  43. favorite advice I heard early on?!? probably “Enjoy each stage–don’t look ahead or back too much!” Though “Calm mom, calm baby/toddler/etc.” was pretty big too. And “The days are long, but the years are short” is one that helps a LOT these days of little ones!!

  44. You can’t spoil a baby by holding her or him.

  45. Margaret Ann says:

    My mom is also a big fan of, “Take it one day at a time.”

    When I was struggling through the toddlerhood of my first child while pregnant with my second, my oldest sister said, “Sometimes I needed to take my toddler out for a little date, just to remember why I liked him.” It sounds kind of funny, but I’ve never forgotten it. Now it’s part of our lives with four children–taking them out for “special time” when we can to connect with them one-on-one and to remember all the wonderful, sweet and amazing things about them.

    And finally, once I was complaining bitterly to my husband about something my second daughter had done or said. My husband gently replied, “Margaret Ann, she’s only five.” I often need to say that to myself these days so that I can respond to my children as children, not as crafty adversaries who are out to get me.

  46. The best mothering advice I received was: “You are the expert on your child.”

  47. I don’t remember who told me, but “choose your battles” is something I repeat to myself daily :).

  48. Best mothering advice. You don’t have to be perfect or stay in THE WORD.

  49. “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water…” 🙂

  50. From my mother-in-law, ‘Never, ever give advice to anyone unless you are asked’.
    I had asked her how she maintained such a good relationship with her adult children.