Home Business And Home School – Making It Work

How do you run a home business and home school? Finding a balance between work and school is the goal for any homeschool family, but especially for homeschool families that also run home businesses. It is wonderful to be able to have a flexible schedule, but also important to be able to set realistic boundaries (ones that honestly, not everyone will respect or even understand). Do you run a home business and home school? How do you make it work?

Home Business and Home School – Making It Work

Our family has been building Honeycomb Design Studio for the last few years and we have developed a significant client base (over a 100 clients that we love) but we have also had to adapt as we have grown. We are only two people (Jonah and Honey) and we can only do so much in one twenty-four hour period (and I have finally hired two Virtual Assistants).

While it is very important to be adaptable and flexible, it is also important to know where to place firm boundaries. We are working hard to establish some boundaries with our clients and prepare for another level of growth in our business. Most, if not all, of our clients have been extremely respectful of these boundaries simply because they are homeschool mamas themselves trying to set their own boundaries.

Sometimes there are circumstances that require a moving or bending of the rigidness of those boundaries due to time constraints or other unknown variables and we need to be able to adapt to. For our family, that has often meant starting school later, rearranging our school days, doing school on the weekend, or creating a lighter work day.

We don’t like this adaptation to be the norm for us and we are working even harder to keep Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday completely free from direct one-to-one client work. We often don’t even turn on email or Skype until school is completely finished.

So, why am I writing all of this? Well, today was one of those adaptation days. We had to schedule an urgent client meeting before school even started. We could have chosen to cancel school for the day (since my sister and her kids are coming to play this afternoon), but instead, we chose to continue on and just get as much done as possible.

It is a relief to know that the schedule is set. We just need to go through the Family Workboxes (aka our buckets) and do a little bit in each subject and we will get through the day and when the timer goes off signalling the end of our day, it is what it is.


During our Bible time today we read and discussed John 3:16.
Download a pdf of the memory verse poster here – – > [Download not found]

lightbulbs memory verse pages-06


We went to Khan Academy again today to watch our math video.

1Screen Shot 2013-01-16 at 6.58.47 PM

We watched Subtraction 2 in the Khan Academy Arithmetic Playlist in case you are following along.

I printed some more subtraction worksheets from The Math Worksheet Site as a review.

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We reviewed the information on syllables from Natural Speller by Kathryn Stout


and then we played Angry Syllables with our foam dice.


Angry Syllables

The rules are simple:

  1. Roll the dice.
  2. Roll a pig – say a word with 3 syllables or more.
  3. Roll a bird – say a word with 2 syllables or less.

This was the longest word that Elisha came up with today:



We reviewed yesterday’s reading from our new science book : Machines & Motion.


and then we ventured on to YouTube to have a look at some videos related to topics that came up during our discussion:

The Major Laws Of Physics


Mechanical Energy

Potential Energy

Energy & Energy Transformations

Energy Is Conserved


And people (who are these “people”) said that cartoons are not educational…

A Few Questions For You

  1. Do you have a home business or work from home?
  2. Do you have to adapt your homeschool or work around circumstances like therapies?
  3. What is one thing that would make your life run more smoothly? (besides more time)

Organizing Our Homeschool Again

Yes, you read that right, we are organizing our homeschool again. We have tried so many different ways of organizing our homeschool, almost as many ways as we have tried to arrange our living room (yeah, that’s a high number). The system we have hit on now is actually working. And get this, it is very easy to use.

I mentioned the other day that we are doing a variation of workboxes – Family Workboxes. Right now we have 6 large buckets and they are labelled as follows: Bible, Math, English, Science, Social Studies, and French. We alternate weeks for Science and Social Studies, and the French bucket also contains PE materials. We hope to start adding in both of those subjects as soon as we are comfortable with our new routine.

In each bucket is everything that we need to tackle that subject for the duration of this term. The buckets include items like: textbooks, workbooks, worksheets, notes (about where to find things online or which books to print from on my hard-drive), games, DVD’s, CD’s, folders full of work to be done and work already done, and any tools needed to do the job.

It has been amazing to open the bucket and just get to work without having to look for everything before we can get started. This has simplified my life. Seriously, you really have no idea how this has simplified my life. The kids are not allowed to touch the buckets – except for school – and before, things had a habit of disappearing. Now everything is where I leave it and as I expect it to be when we start school. This is such a blessing.

I can see future benefits too. I can print things and slip them into the buckets to weave into current or future lessons. I can gather games or experiment bits and pieces to put in the buckets to help us learn in a more hands on way.

I would love to hear how you organize your homeschool. Please leave a note in the comments.


During our Bible time today we read and discussed Proverbs 20:11.
Download a pdf of the memory verse poster here – – > [Download not found]

lightbulbs memory verse pages-05


We went to Khan Academy again today to watch our math video.

1Screen Shot 2013-01-16 at 6.58.47 PM

We watched Basic Subtraction in the Khan Academy Arithmetic Playlist in case you are following along.

We used subtraction worksheets from The Math Worksheet Site as a review.

1Screen Shot 2013-01-16 at 6.59.14 PM


We are still working through these books:

PicMonkey Collage

Left Book – No Boring Practice, Please! Spelling
Right Book – Comic-Strip Grammar

In No Boring Practice, Please! Spelling we are “still” working on syllables. Just like yesterday we will be doing word building games instead of doing written crosswords. I wrote the syllables of the words on cards and gave them clues so they could build the words. (I did take pictures, but they turned out all blurry so I am not including them here).

We read the information page on syllables from Natural Speller by Kathryn Stout.



We deviated from our Comic-Strip Grammar for the day and I created a simple worksheet on pronouns based on one found in Grammar a Step-by-Step Approach. I had to print it on pink paper and the boys were not too impressed with that.



Today we did our first reading from our new science book : Machines & Motion.


After conducting some experiments with a bouncy ball, we ventured on to YouTube to have a look at some videos related to things that came up during our discussion:

Throwing A Baseball

Gravity Hill

A Few Questions For You

  1. What are you currently studying in science?
  2. How do you measure progress and understanding?
  3. What is one thing you would change about your homeschool this year?

Tech Tuesday – Something New For You

lighthouse memory club

I mentioned before how we use the iPad for learning our memory verses. That method works well for us, but we are also working on a series of animations. Which you have seen previewed here before.

We have been working hard on a fun site for our kids to view all of the bible verse animations that we are making and we wanted to share a sneak peek of it with you.

We have purposely kept it simple and easy for little ones to navigate. Hosanna, our three year old daughter, loves to watch the animations on the iPad. We watched her navigate the site and tailor made it so that it would be easy for anyone to use.

Note: We are working behind the scenes to create a separate parent’s/educator’s area and we’ll let you know when that is ready for you to use.

Come on over and have a look. We would love to hear what you think.

It is also Tech Tuesday, so don’t forget to link up your posts about how you use technology in your homeschool.

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Tech Tuesday

Welcome back to Tech Tuesday.

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Today I wanted to share about one of the ways we use our iPad.

Jonah has been making these wonderful Lighthouse Memory Club animations for the kids and we have all been learning our memory verses. You will be hearing more about the Lighthouse Memory Club as time goes on, but today I just want to show you this PDF that we use.

We wanted a quick and easy way to review our memory verses every morning, so Jonah set to work and came up with a nice little PDF that we can use on our iPad.

I apologize for the fuzzy pictures – I had a 3 year old hanging off my arm while I was trying to take them.


So Jonah is working on a series of memory verse animations (I said that already, right?). All of these characters are in the animation. It will be available on DVD sometime in the near future.


Each family member is a character in the animations – doing voices. Jonah has more than one character that he does voices for (man, can he do voices!).

text bigger

This PDF that Jonah made is like a little book that you can turn the pages of – or make text bigger on.

fluorescent and lloyd

Jonah and I have worked on the colorful graphics together. There are cute graphics, but no moving parts for this PDF.


Each of the kids associates their character with their memory verse. I wonder what is going to happen when we go to do the next set of verses?

Knight Light

They all love their characters, but practising lines over and over again is not always fun.


So are you ready to grab your own PDF of these memory verses? Memory Verse Book Volume 1 (don’t worry, it’s free!)

Thank you for joining us for Tech Tuesday (I know it was late again, I apologize. I will do better next week). Leave your links in the comments and then we can come and visit your site.