homeschooling, homemaking, homesteading...home.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

In Which Things Don't Go Well

Whether you're a blogger, a homeschooling parent, or both, there's an ingrained tendency to never be far from a camera. Any activity--whether spontaneous or carefully planned--has potential as a good story or fodder for a portfolio. It's like your life is a constant documentary. Unfortunately, it's also a constant improv. Sometimes things go well and you end up with a terrific final product that you're proud to share with an audience, then with a sense of contentment and satisfaction, tuck away in your memory box.

Other times, it all just goes to hell. That's how I've ended up with a number of (entire, exhaustive series of!) photos for blog posts that never materialized, because the activity didn't turn out as planned/hoped/expected. For example:
Yarn "Easter baskets". Kids use a LOT of glue. These never really stiffened. Even when fully dry, they were limp and unsuitable even for display empty. Very disappointing.

Cool caterpillar we discovered, captured, and identified. (I've since forgotten its identity, alas.) We looked up its basic info, including appropriate food, and watched it every day to see it change into its adult form. It took us quite a while to realize that our chrysalis was desiccated and contained a dead critter. Sigh.

T's several weeks-long quest to reassemble a groundhog skeleton we'd discovered. We spent so much time sorting, identifying, classifying, and organizing bones...but we never got around to figuring out a method of connecting them and kind of gave up on the whole thing after a while.

I thought "egg in a hole" would be a lot more fun if we used shaped cookie cutters.
Too bad the volume of the egg surpassed the area of the shape. We ended up with blobs.

And our most recent...
Solar oven experiment. It totally didn't work.
In other words, there are plenty of activities that don't make the papers because they weren't "wins". I'm trying to take consolation from these words:
Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.
--Abraham Lincoln
Well, our enthusiasm is intact. As is our optimism. We'll be back to try more crazy adventures...and maybe from here on out I won't be so self-conscious as to not share them. After all, they are learning experiences too!


  1. This cracked me up.

    We tried to make Easter eggs one year with the yarn and glue around balloons. Complete failure. There must be some trick to that.

  2. Yep. You have to focus on capturing the Moments -- whatever they show/document. :)
    Honestly, though it isn't as fun, so much more is learned in the 'failed' experiments than in the successful ones.
    I try to get tons of photos of whatever we are doing, wherever we are and because (obviously) I just like taking photos of interesting textures and colors and compositions together. It has helped me be far less 'product oriented' and more process focused. (Though it and I are both constant works-in-progress) <3