This Blind Mom’s 3 Must Haves for Homeschool

journal and coffee cup

In 2016, when we decided to start homeschooling our boys, never one time did I think I would get asked the question, “How can you homeschool blind?” There were tons of other questions I anticipated, and I’ve been asked many of those as well. The common questions about social skills, grade cards, testing and college. Never once did I anticipate the question about homeschooling blind.  Yet, this is the most common question and it gets asked at almost every conversation where we reveal we are a homeschool family. In some cases this question is asked because there is an assumption that a blind person is incompetent, lacking the ability to do what a sighted person can do.

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5 Quick Marriage Tips

Picture of Stasia and David Giles

Happy Anniversary to my husband, David, of 21 years! 21 years of doing life together! Two kids, two guide dogs, four pound puppies, one unofficially adopted son, four homes and four ministry positions. 7,665 days of loving, learning, living, growing, sharing, and laughing!  Every moment of our life together, the good, the bad and the ugly, has brought us to here, where we are today and it’s right where I want to be!

One of our favorite things to do in ministry is pre-marriage counseling.

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The Fear of Falling

Picture of coffee and laptop

What do I fear most about sight loss? Over the years my answer has changed just as my vision has decreased. I can honestly say that I am at a place in my life where I have no fear in being blind. It is just the reality of my life. I have a choice to limit myself and miss out on the fun or I could just look past what I can’t see and do all the fun stuff anyways.  More often than not, I just go for it! I have 4 other senses that work perfectly and allow me to enjoy people and the world around me.

Don’t misunderstand my choice to live life to the fullest with an idea that being blind isn’t challenging. I live in a world that is for the sighted. From the beauty of the land to the menu at my favorite restaurant, sight is required. However, I have to overcome the requirement of sight and find a different way to participate. A lot of times it is through the eyes

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In the Meantime

Picture of Stasia with West from school

Well, in just a few hours I will be boarding a plane to Guiding Eyes for the Blind in Yorktown Heights, NY. Over the next 19 days I will receive and train with a new guide dog. It’s hard to believe that it has been 10-1/2 years since I made this trip to receive my first guide dog, Duncan. But, here I am, packing and preparing to leave my family for almost the entire month of June! I’m really looking forward to having a guide dog again. The freedom to take a walk around the block by myself or stroll through the park with my family with no need for their assistance is something I’m looking forward to. It’s just a small piece of independence I get back thanks to a furry, 4 legged, tail wagging partner.

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First Year of Homeschool is History

Deuteronomy 6:5-6
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you lie down and when you rise up.”

We just completed our first year of homeschool! Wait……What? Definitely not something I’d ever hear myself say, let alone write out on my blog for all the world to read. I mean, really, I never really liked school and my favorite days were snow days! But, here I am finishing up an entire year of homeschool AND I’m preparing to do it again next year. And crazy of all crazies, we all really enjoyed it!

My boys are just finishing up grade 6 and grade 8, so what made us switch from public school to homeschool? Let me just say right out of the gate,

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A Single Word

   “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 (The Holy Bible, NASB)

I need vision for my life.  Not sight, but vision, a plan.  I need to be heading somewhere, working toward some goal or accomplishing a purpose.  Just getting through the day to get to the next day and doing the sam thing tomorrow is a definite trouble maker for me.  I get irritable, I feel like I’m out of control and I lose sight of who I am.  Along with that vision and identity I want to be moving forward, climbing higher or going deeper.

I’m a wife, mom and pastor.  These parts of my life make up who I am and there is lots of vision for the future.  I love being a wife to David, partnering in life with him has been an amazing journey

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It’s Been My Dream

Woo hoo!!  Finally here I am writing my first blog!  I’ve been planning and thinking about writing this blog for several years, as a matter of fact, I’ve had this website up with the “Coming Soon” page for just about 2 years!  What’s been the hold up?  Well, that’s a good question and I don’t really have a good answer.  But, I do want to tell you why this website has been stirring in my heart and mind for several years.

I live life with very little sight.  When I was 8 years old I was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP).  RP is a genetic and degenerative disease of the retina.  Over the next

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