What I Have Learned Through Homeschooling | This Stuff Is For All Of Us

This year marks our 12th year of officially homeschooling and as I reflect back over this journey I am in awe and humbled by what has been invested, how our family has been impacted and how I have changed as a mom and wife.

A few weeks ago I was talking with Kelly about all of the things I have learned about our home, family, children and myself over these years homeschooling. The biggest being myself.  Whether your kids are in school, you homeschool, your kids have moved out or you have never had children…I think at some point of this list you may see yourself. Life is beautiful in the ways it allows us to change and grow when we are open to it.

1.Start Before You Are Ready

This is the story of my life but it has served me well. I have dived into schooling and business before I knew what I was doing and I figured it out along the way. I have constantly adjusted the plan when necessary but also stayed true to the heart of why I was doing it and if I got off track (because it happens) you find your way back.

2. Less Is More

When the kids were little I had the games, art supplies, books, curriculum etc. I had ALL THE THINGS and that was fine but the older the kids get the more I truly believe that less is more. When we don’t get distracted by the “stuff” we are free to see the learning, beauty, and connection all around us.

3. Any Moment Is Good For a Restart

We homeschool and run a business together from our land, home, and studio. We are together a lot and that means that there are days that we are not lovely, to say the least. Any moment is a good time for a restart when you feel that you are off and that it is impacting your own behavior or those around you. You have no idea how many times I have stopped our day and declared a do-over. We made the conscious decision to have a different kind of day.  It has also been a good lesson to live in whatever you are feeling but to go be by yourself when you are feeling that way. Somedays you just need to be by yourself and that is OK and good and healthy.

4. We Are Atmosphere Changers

I know that I am the biggest atmosphere changer in my home. I set the tone. That is an honor and huge responsibility. It also requires humility and honesty. The restart above I talked about is often me. I need to change. I need to ask for forgiveness or I need to take a break to not selfishly impact all of those around me.

5. Don’t Save The Best For Others

This is probably one of my favorite things I have ever learned as a woman, mom, and wife. Show the people in your home (including yourself) that the good dishes, linen napkins, good food, pretty silver, good music, flowers, and candles are first and foremost for THEM. Your list may look different than mine but the intention will be the same. Instead of storing the prettiest things away for special occasions find daily reasons to live with your beautiful things, use them up and lavish those in your life. We really use ALL of the pretty things. I want my family to know that each day is worthy of the “good stuff”.

6. Become Lifelong Learners

We read, we talk, we question and we listen. If our children do not leave this house having the skills to gather information, process and then question what is around them then we have failed them. Our job is to not just allow them to “agree” with us but for our children to know where we stand and then find their own way. Our education goals for them have always been to have them become lifelong learners.

7. Be Present

Have a plan but be open to it changing. This lesson has been a big one for me. I love checklists, schedules, and accomplishments. I have also come to appreciate and truly love being open to what the kids are open to learning, when we just need to shut the books and go for a hike, take an impromptu “field trip” and be open to unexpected guests. When the weather is magic to take advantage of it and when there is a snowstorm to stop to play. When a child needs to talk that I notice the signs and completely stop and turn to them. The being present part of life is when all the good stuff happens.

8.There Is Not Just One Way

We can all do things differently and respect that different things work for each of us. This can be curriculum, schooling, politics etc. Being able to stand in our differences and loving each other beyond what we have in common.

9. Find Your Gifts and See It In Others

So many times growing up I didn’t feel seen for my own gifts. That can be so hard to not feel honored and then try to fit into the giftings of others to fit in.  Having children, being married and homeschooling our kids has opened my eyes to those around me and how I want to truly see, honor and recognize THEIR giftings. I can notice when friends and family don’t acknowledge our business etc. but then I have to be honest with myself that maybe I haven’t been seeing what is going on in their lives. It goes both ways.

10. I Don’t Just Love You…I Truly Like You

The best part of being a mom and having this time with the kids is being with THEM. This is the hardest thing I have ever done but nothing compares to the deep knowing that they are extraordinary people. Each one with their own gifts, personality, love language, and struggles. Each one with their own dreams and needs.  It has been my greatest honor to watch them become and to continue to watch them unfold.

If you would like to follow more of our day to day life I would love to have you join us on Instagram. 

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Building a Creatively Made Business | Your Business And The New Year

BCMBnewyear

Re-post from January 2017.

The New Year is not the only time you need to stop and re-evaluate your business and where it is going. Take time each month to adjust the things that are and are not working. Getting your business and your own creativity back on track should be a regular part of your business health.

A brand new year is a perfect time to re-evaluate your business goals and to take the time to see what changes can be made to make THIS the year where your business and creativity grows like never before.

I am sharing 5 tips to get your business off to a beautiful start in the new year…

-Family First

The beginning of the year is the perfect time for my family to sit down and re-evaluate our schedule, what we want to change and how we can better hear and see each other. Since my first Building a Creatively Made Business online class I have been sharing that your business goals and family goals need to run parallel and build each other up. The hope and goal is that the strength in each helps to have success in each.   If they are fighting against each other one or both will fail. This takes honest conversations, compromise and sometimes getting help where you need it. If you have others in your life that are impacted by your business I encourage a family meeting to hear the pulse of what you hold the dearest.

-Let Something Go

Building and running a business is a hard and tiring job. It takes an honest (and healthy) person to admit where they are falling short and could use some help. Sometimes this can be big things that you are not experienced or strong in and other times it is the jobs that not only you can do.   Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should.   I know that when you are still building your business it can be hard to pay others to do some of the things where you are not skilled. We have paid someone from the very beginning to help with our blog and website design and our branding. We couldn’t afford NOT to have someone help us in this area. It has made all of the difference. Over the years we have needed help with household things that we were not getting to. We have also had contractors and artisans create for us, help with shipping, design work and admin work. We need them and if we want to create the family that we want we have to let something’s go.

-Honor Your Word

We have all said yes to things that we didn’t want to do and it kept us from doing the things we really desired. It kept us from doing the things that we were made for. This is big stuff. Let your yes be yes and your no be no. Meaning, that if you say yes make sure you give it your all. To do that, you have to say no to most other things. What did you say yes to in 2016 that you should have said no to? What did you say yes to that you wanted to do but because you said yes to too many other things you did a poor job? If you are going to grow your business you have to know where to put your energy and when you do it it should be with your whole heart. Saying no just may set you free in 2017.

-Collaborate

Do you have a person in your business world (or outside of it) that you have been dying to work with? What do you have to lose? They can say no and you try another person. What if they say yes! Some of my most joyful and creatively expanding work has been collaborating with other artists and business men and women I admire. Working with others has brought financial and creative success again and again. I have also learned business lessons that I would have missed without the collaboration. Collaborations also get you out of your head and out of your comfort zone. Priceless.

-Do Something Scary

It is never perfect when you start, there is never enough money to do everything and you have to make the time to pursue your calling. These are just truths to life and business. I know you have something scary that you want to do this year BUT….No, jump in. It won’t be perfect, you won’t have it all together, if you want it bad enough you will find the money and you will make the time. Do something scary this year. Guess what? You then learn by doing that scary things are only scary for a short time and you walk through them and do the next scary thing. When you look back you will see years of walking through scary things that turned into collaborations, expansion, big art, travel, being vulnerable, authentic relationships, adventure….the list goes on. Just one thing. Pick just one thing this year and see the beauty that comes out of doing scary things.

coursedividers

If you are interested in building or growing your business I would love to talk with you. I have a small amount of consulting openings each month and would love to share my rates with you and help you build your own creative business. You can contact me at contact@jeanneoliverdesigns.com.

You may want to schedule a business consultation if…

*You have been dreaming about a business idea and don’t know where to begin

*You are feeling stuck in your current business and want to brainstorm how to revive your creative business

*You feel overwhelmed by your current business and need to say no to some things so you can say yes to your true passions

*You want direction with blogging, your website or social media

*You want help creating a consistent look and feel within your brand

*You are not sure what your brand is and how to define it

*You just need fresh eyes on your business

*You have questions about collaborations

*You want to find out how to get published and how to get your work seen

*You need another creative who has been there and is there to bounce ideas off of

coursedividers

If you are interested in reading more in our Building a Creatively Made Business Series:

Celebrate Milestones

The Big Picture

The Art of Practice

Q & A

Say No To Say Yes

Creative Business Consulting

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Q & A All About Business, Home and Family | We Want To Hear Your Questions!

We get so many emails each day asking about our home/land/studio/business/family and we haven’t done a blog Q&A for a long time and thought NOW is the perfect time!

What questions do you have?

It can be about anything (almost anything:-))!

You can ask it in the comments of this post or email us at contact@jeanneoliverdesigns.com.

Next week I will do a video answer all of the questions!

I can’t wait to hear from you!

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Fall Kitchen and Recipe Tour 2016 | Mini Home Video Too

Welcome to our first home tour in our new home! Thank you for joining me for the Farmhouse Holiday Series. Come back each week over the next few months and get peeks into our home dressed up for Fall and Christmas.  Our hope is that this series will be glimpses into our homes during the holidays, and that we will be sharing inspiration for simple cozy spaces.

We went on a crazy home journey within the past year and you can read about it here, here and here.  We had no interest in moving and then here we are. It was a year ago this month that we looked at that first home and all of the adventuring began.

We have been in this home for 6 months now and we have worked the hardest to turn an unfinished workshop and garage into our new studio.  We have so many ideas and plans for this home and we have been having the best time making it ours.  Today we are taking a peek into our kitchen and this is an area where we will only be making small changes for awhile.  Before we moved in we had the whole house painted Nano White by Behr (ceilings, walls, baseboards) and we had the window frames painted Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams. We also replaced all of the lighting throughout the whole house. It is amazing what just paint and lighting can do to transform a space.

All of the homes we put offers on were mid century or more modern homes.  We had been wanting this change for awhile and it feels so good to have this new creative energy. Creating comfortable and beautiful spaces within our home for our family and friends is one of my greatest joys.  I am not in a rush to fill the space and want to allow the space to organically come together.

 

 

One of our favorite parts about this new house is the layout and all of the windows.

I love making breakfast each morning and looking out the back windows and seeing the mountains. If we are really lucky we will see our favorite residence of our woods…the does and fawns.

I hope that never gets old.

We were able to take many of our vintage pieces and mix them with more modern pieces in this home and I think they work beautifully together.

I have learned to carry scissors in the car so I can cut all of the wild flowers along the side of the road on my way home each day:-)

I like to have my cooking staples on hand and easily within reach.  I love creating layers in decorating throughout the house and the kitchen is no exception.

I change out everything on the vintage cutting board each month based upon the season and what plants I can find.

I love including our children’s art throughout the house and I adore this sculpture that our Maddy made a few years ago.

I love when they will let me show them art techniques and then they run with it and create mini masterpieces in my eyes.

We had originally planned to put up open shelving in this area but we have loved the mix of the vintage shoe trolley with the white ironstone and other collected serving pieces.

We have lots of years to play with this space.

While I was in Normandy a few years back I found some of the most wonderful vintage grain sacks.  I framed many of them and you will find some of them around this home.

If you have vintage needlepoint or fabric but you don’t know what to do with it I highly recommend framing it. It adds so much interest and texture to a room.

Because I know that photos make it hard to feel the flow of a home I wanted to make a quick kitchen video for you all.

Kitchen Video Tour

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I love cooking for my family but also having friends over and casually and comfortably entertaining.

The biggest thing that I have learned over the years is to cook things that I love to cook and things that I have cooked so many times that I am not stressed with my guests.

So, make a fun cocktail for your guests and enjoy cooking for your friends and family and keep the focus on them and having a great time.

I have included a few of my favorite recipes below with videos that were created for my Art of Home online course from last fall (back when I had red hair:-)).

Butternut Squash + Sausage Soup

Butternut Squash + Sausage Soup Video

 

 

Easy Cocktail Recipes Video

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Come and check out all of the beautiful glimpses into the other kitchens in the tour.

Farmhouse Fall Kitchen

 

 

Ella Claire | Craftberry Bush | Miss Mustard Seed | Jeanne Oliver

Farmhouse Fall Kitchen 2

 

Love Grows Wild | Rooms FOR Rent | Shades of Blue Interiors | Dear Lillie

Farmhouse Fall Kitchen 3

French Country Cottage | My Sweet Savannah | Kindred Vintage | Jennifer Rizzo

 

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If you are new to my blog you may not know that we have the most gorgeous and fun online home courses on our creative network!

We have a brand new online course beginning on November 1st with the talented Melinda McCoy of House 214 Designs.

Feel Home: Creating a Timeless Feeling Home is all about how to decorate a comfortable and beautiful space!

We all have the same questions when it comes to designing our homes. Where do I begin? Is this really me or am I making this decision because it is the latest trend? Am I still going to like this look six months from now? Whether you are the everyday home designer or working with a professional, the choices you make for your timeless home need to be made with intention. This course will guide you through the process and teach you the framework that I use to create a timeless home with my clients. We will create storyboards, discover the language for a timeless home (hint, it has a lot to do with your personality), and learn the exact design elements that create a timeless feeling. You will learn by doing. As a result, making design decisions for your timeless home will be easier. You will be making your decisions with intention and confidence rather than because you saw it in the latest issue of a favorite magazine. This course will teach you not just the what, but the how and why behind creating a timeless feeling in your home.

If you are new to our creative network here are easy steps to get you started…

1. Register at jeanneoliver.ning.com (this is free).

2. Once your account is active you are able to take advantage of our free courses, series and even pay for courses.

3. Go to jeanneoliver.ning.com and along the top header click on “COURSES” and you will be able to view all three pages of online courses and free series.

4. To purchase a course please choose your course, click on the +join in the upper right hand corner, pay and you will be INSTANTLY in the classroom.

5. All videos can be found along the right hand side of the page under “COURSE CONTENT”.

*as long as we manage the jeanneoliver.ning.com creative network

 

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Finding Myself Missing Writing

[Within the past two weeks we have packed up a home, moved outside of town onto acreage, unpacked, started to make a house a home, went to the Daddy Daughter Ball and drank a lot of coffee]

It seems that with the busyness of life, family and business that I don’t choose to write out my thoughts here as often. My free time now may be a late night walk, cuddling up on the couch, sitting with a teen at the kitchen counter or very likely heading to bed early. I am so ok with this change but as I began to type it was surprising how out of practice I have become at writing out my thoughts here.

Nothing has shown me that we are in the next stage of life, marriage and parenthood like this past year. Our home is full of social lives that aren’t mine, beginning stages of so many things that we are still trying to figure out , a business that is growing strong and beautiful and learning how to balance and navigate all of that, children that seem to need us so much more than the ages when we thought they needed us the most and a marriage that has to find its way in the midst of these years. I find myself exhausted some evenings but making the choice to find my way out of the fog to spend time, drive or connect when I thought I had nothing left. This parenting teens and a 9 year old gig is not for the weak of heart yet in the same breath I am totally smitten with their fierce sense of humor, their willingness to talk to me, their hand holding and cuddles when they are willing and seeing glimpses of who they are becoming. It is an exhausting and beautiful privilege and I wouldn’t change it for anything.

My time and energy is spent right where it needs to be but I am also realizing that I still have a deep and strong love of writing and I want to share it outside of just my online courses or live workshops.

I just wanted you to know where I have been and that I would love to find my weekly voice here again in an authentic way that fits my changing days.

Love to you,

Jeanne

 

For those of you that love our online courses I wanted you to know that TODAY is the last day to get the early registration price on Danielle Donaldson’s newest watercolor course All Creatures Lovely and Small.

If you took Scribble Art and loved it (I think that was everyone) you will not want to miss Julie Johnson’s newest online class Making Art Sing!  It begins tomorrow and it is going to be so beautiful and rich!  We would love to have you join us!

To read more about what you will learn in the course or to register please click HERE.

If you are new to our creative network here are easy steps to get you started…

1. Register at jeanneoliver.ning.com (this is free).

2. Once your account is active you are able to take advantage of our free courses, series and even pay for courses.

3. Go to jeanneoliver.ning.com and along the top header click on “COURSES” and you will be able to view all three pages of online courses and free series.

4. To purchase a course please choose your course, click on the +join in the upper right hand corner, pay and you will be INSTANTLY in the classroom.

5. All videos can be found along the right hand side of the page under “COURSE CONTENT”.

*as long as we manage this site

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Creativity Takes Courage {Danielle Burkleo}

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For those of you that are new to the blog I want to tell you a little bit about the free series.

My creative network offers free videos, new online courses, live “chats” and now interviews with courageous lovelies from around the world.

Over the past two years I have had the opportunity to interview some of my favorite creative women and business owners.

You can see the talented list of interviewees over on my creative network under Creativity Takes Courage.

 

This month we are talking with Danielle Burkleo all about being a mom of young children and running a business, social media, Hope Spoken and adoption.

I love her heart to trust the Lord to lead her and her style is pretty killer too!

I admire how Danielle is really figuring out (way sooner than I did) how to use her creativity, love on her family and be open to where the Lord is taking her.

Go grab something to drink and get comfy…

To watch the video you just need to be registered at jeanneoliver.ning.com (registering is free).

Once you are on the site you will find this series, free videos (business and art) and new online courses along the left hand side of the page.

You will find all of our courses/videos under the COURSES heading.

If you want to watch Danielle’s video:

1) Go to COURSES along the left hand side of the page

2) Click on Creativity Takes Courage {interviews with courageous friends}

3) Click the +join button on the upper right hand side

4) All of the details are on the page and you are all set.

Tell your friends!

We want to create an online community where you can create, connect and be inspired.

Come on over and check out the interview!

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Creativity Takes Courage {Kimberly Taylor and The Grow Hope Foundation}

Our newest Creativity Takes Courage interview starts right now!

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For those of you that are new to the blog I want to tell you a little bit about the free series.

My creative network offers free videos, new online courses, live “chats” and now interviews with courageous lovelies from around the world.

Over the past two years I have had the opportunity to interview some of my favorite creative women and business owners.

You can see the talented list of interviewees over on my creative network under Creativity Takes Courage.

This month I had the joy of interviewing my good friend Kimberly Taylor.

Kimberly is the founder of The Grow Hope Foundation and I am honored that we had this chance for her to share her heart on family, passions, Africa and creating hope.

I have been friends with Kimberly for over five years now and she never ceases to amaze me with her knowledge of gardening, cooking and photography.

Her style is comfortable, timeless and welcoming.

She is a friend I have laughed and cried with, traveled with and dreamed with.

To see her bring her passions together and create something that brings her joy and blesses others is pretty incredible to see.

The Grow Hope Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping people around the world improve their circumstances through education and a helping hand.  Whether it is a loan to begin a sustainable business, bringing in wells to communities with no access to clean water, educating parents on nutrition and hygiene to prevent the spread of disease in their children or hands-on instruction in how to improve sanitation by building better latrines, we want to make a difference.  With your help we can give those in need a helping hand, so that they can create a better future for themselves and their children on their own.

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To watch the video you just need to be registered at jeanneoliver.ning.com (registering is free).

Once you are on the site you will find this series, free videos (business and art) and new online courses along the left hand side of the page.

You will find all of our courses/videos under the COURSES heading.

If you want to watch Kimberly’s video:

1) Go to COURSES along the left hand side of the page

2) Click on Creativity Takes Courage {interviews with courageous friends}

3) Click the +join button on the upper right hand side

4) All of the details are on the page and you are all set.

Tell your friends!

We want to create an online community where you can create, connect and be inspired.

Come on over and check out the interview!

Be a deer and
leave me a comment.

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