NEW PODCAST: Epic Failures

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EPIC FAILURE #1: Pushing formal reading lessons over extra read aloud time.  

Let me explain!  Being a former classroom teacher, I was convinced my daughter had to do formal reading lessons in Kindergarten and that she had to learn to read by 1st grade.  First, this is false.  Those are crazy and unnecessary standards and expectations.  If you are baffled by his recommendation, then read Better Late than Early by Dr. Raymond Moore sometime this year.  

My daughter really wanted to learn how to read. However, the process was a bit challenging at first. She loved being read to, and she loved “reading” to her stuffed animals and to her little brother, but the actual process of reading wasn’t clicking.  What did I do?  I started pushing.    

For years, she knew her letters and sounds, but she couldn’t blend them together.  Then when she entered first grade, the same thing was happening.  She loved our read aloud times and wanted desperately to read on her own, but the process of reading kept eluding her.  So what did I do again?   I pushed more, and I purchased an even more expensive and more complicated reading programs.  

Well, the story was the same in second grade.  She was reading now but not at the level the teacher in me thought was acceptable.  So I really began to push her. I added extra work and started looking for reading tutors.  However when third grade rolled around, reading started to click for her and by fourth grade, my daughter was reading at a high school level.

Why was this an EPIC FAIL?  Because she wasn’t ready for formal reading lessons.  Instead of spending so much time doing long and tedious reading lessons, I should have just spent more time reading aloud to her.  She loved stories, and she loved read aloud time. 

This was an EPIC FAIL because I wasted so much time pushing her to read. It was an EPIC FAIL because of the tears we shed. 

I should not have pushed.  I should not have worried.  Why?  Fast forward 15 years.  This same little girl is now an adult who is a prolific reader, who consumes 1,000 page books in a day, whose second home is the library, and whose kindle is just another appendage.  In spite of me, she never lost her love of books (thank God) and when she figured out the actual process of reading, there was no limit to what she could read, do, or learn.  Learn from my epic failure.  Don’t push reading (and math) especially when they are young.  

Friend, I have so, so, so many more epic failures to share!

You don’t want to miss this week’s episode! 

I share my top five Epic Homeschooling Failures and my worst mommy moments.  Instead of sharing with you advice on what to do this homeschooling school year, I thought I would share from the heart what NOT to do.  It is my prayer that by sharing my heart-felt confessions and by revealing some of my most embarrassing moments, you will not only be encouraged, but you will walk away knowing you are not alone and that even when we “fail,” God can use our epic failures for His purposes.  If anything, you will definitely walk away feeling like “Mom of the Year” after hearing my epic failures.  Join me for this little coffee break. I must admit I got a little choked up on Epic Failure #5, but I got through it.  I am hoping my  transparency will give you courage, confidence, and hope to keep on keeping on!  

CLICK HERE for NEW PODCAST:  Epic Failures (What NOT To Do This Year)!

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It’s An Election Year:  Activities For the Whole Family

This is a perfect year to focus on US History, the States and Capitals, US Presidents and/or American Government & the Election Process.

Check out this week’s PODCAST for some easy ideas on how to focus on the USA during this Election year.  No fancy curriculum needed!


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Don’t Know Much About the 50 States by Kenneth Davis

United Tastes of America: An Atlas of Food Facts & Recipes from Every State!  by Langholtz

Eat Your Way through the USA by Loree Petitt

How to Make Cherry Pie and See the USA by Marjorie Pricemen

2020-electionThe Presidents Visual Encyclopedia by DK and Smithsonian

The Encyclopedia of the Presidents and Their Times by David Rubel

Presidents (Eyewitness Book) by James Barber

Who Was…. Series by Penguin Random House

If You Were There When They Signed the Constitution by Elizabeth Levy

Constitution Quest Game

Hail to the Chief Board Game

Election Night Board Game (History and Math!)

The Scrambled States of America Board Game

IMG_0902Trekking the National Parks Board Game

Geo Puzzle USA

Professor Noggins Presidents Game

Professor Noggins Geography of the United States Game

School House Rock Election Collection DVD’s

FREE Election Unit Study from Sonlight

Elections ABC FREE Unit Study

History Alive (Part 1 & 2) Podcast: Read Your Way Through History and How to Use Timelines and History Notebooks.

Do You Feel the World Is Going Crazy?

Well, you are not alone!  It is hard not to watch the news, read articles, and look at social media without shaking your head and wondering why what seems so obvious and clear to you is not understood or seen by others.

2 kings 6In this week’s podcast episode, I dig deep into God’s Word and share several principles that can be learned from Elisha, Elijah’s protege.  It is a timely message on feeling outnumbered and the importance of spiritual sight in a world filled with spiritual blindness.  It is simply amazing how many ways we can apply the lessons learned in 2 Kings 6:8-23 to our lives and homeschooling!  Elisha’s servant felt outnumbered but Elisha helped him see they were surrounded and protected by God’s angelic army.  If you haven’t figured it out yet, we are in the midst of a spiritual battle.  What is happening across our nation is spiritual warfare.  We need spiritual eyes like Elisha to stand firm in our faith and to not be intimated in our task to share God’s truth, our mission of motherhood, and calling to homeschool.

Get your Bibles. Turn to 2 Kings 6, and join me for a little coffee break!

CLICK HERE:  What Do You See?  Lessons Learned From Elisha

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Your ULTIMATE Job Description


The ministry of motherhood is a blessing and a gift, but it can also be very challenging.  If you add the calling to homeschool, then you just kicked it up a notch!  Does God call us to be teacher of the year, super mom, and child psychologist extraordinaire?  Well, that would be a big fat NO!  However, God does call us to be faithful.

Join me for Part 4 of the “Start the School Year Strong” Series.  In this week’s podcast, I shed some light on what a mom and home educator’s ultimate job description entails.  You will be encouraged as I share from Chapter 15 of my new homeschooling book, Just Breathe (and Take a Sip of Coffee):  Homeschool in Step with God.  It is a coffee break you don’t want to miss!

CLICK HERE to listen to the podcast “Your Ultimate Job Description.”

To purchase Just Breathe (and Take a Sip of Coffee):  Homeschool in Step with God, go to

To read what others are saying about the book, check out NEW BOOK Tab!  If you like the book, we would love for you to write a review on Amazon.

It’s GOOD Homeschooling Day


Is there really such a thing as a “typical” homeschool day?

Well, that’s a loaded question!  You are going to hate my answer but every family’s “typical” day will look and sound different.  However if you feel like your family’s typical day is always a disaster or unproductive, then let’s talk.

How about we change the question to “What makes a homeschool day a good day?”  Join my for a little coffee break and let’s talk homeschooling.  In this week’s podcast, I share simple things you can do each day to nourish your child’s soul, feed his mind, and spark his curiosity.  No extra or expensive curriculum needed!

Will we have great days everyday? No way!  Will we have some pretty bad days? Most definitely!  Is it possible to have a good day most of the time?  It is possible!

What constitutes a good day?  You might just be surprised ( and relieved)!  Join me for Part 3 of the “Start Your School Year Strong” Series.  In this week’s podcast, we talk about the difference between a “typical” homeschool day and a “good” homeschool day. I also share how to change a really bad day into a “good enough” day!

A good day circle

CLICK HERE to listen to Podcast “A Good Homeschooling Day.”

CLICK HERE for the helpful handout I mention in the podcast.  Print it.  Laminate it or put into a sheet protector.  Then hang it where you can see it or place it into your homeschooler planner.  If your day includes opportunities for these nine things, then you can rest assured you definitely had a good day!

To receive Carrie’s Checklist for a Successful Start, subscribe to Coffee With Carrie email newsletter.  CLICK HERE and subscribe at the “Join Our Community” tab.  As a thank you, I will send you her checklist.
To purchase Just Breathe (and Take a Sip of Coffee):  Homeschool in Step with God, go to