ha, the blogs, yes! And Soulemama's is an especially bad one for this. Can I just say one thing about that specific blog? She is really entirely open about the fact that she is doing this partly to provide an income for her family. She's financially benefitting from our desire to read about these particular, very narrow, aspects of her life. A good percentage of her blog is incredibly well placed advertising, mainly for the products of others. I've been reading her for years, actually, certainly since she had only two kids, and before she started doing any more than linking to her etsy shop, and her site and prose has changed SO much. She's selling something, and there is nothing wrong with that, but don't forget that that is what she's doing. Its not just another parenting blog really, its a marketing tool at the end of the day. I would not feel comfortable putting my family out there like that but hey, LOADS of people do or wish they could, she's just really good at it (and her pictures and prose ARE very good, I don't think her kudos is undeserved)
When my kids were small I happened to know someone who had this amazing mummy blog. She was a radical unschooling, raw food only, ECing, etc etc parent. Now I knew her before I knew she was writing the blog. I knew she had these beliefs and tried, as so many of us do, to practice them. She was just a normal parent, albeit one who was quite timid and finding her feet. She didn't seem like an amazing doing things all the time person at all, nor, tbh, an amazingly compassionate and tuned in parent. So I was a bit shocked to read her blog really, which was kind of an aspirational UK Soulemama. I was even more shocked to realise people were actually following her and inspired by her. The issue for me was that this clearly wasn't actually working for her. She was struggling, really struggling, despite far more family hands on support than I've ever had, because she was trying to live up to all these beliefs and ideologies-and then blogging as though she was on top of the world 24/7.
I guess I realised that on the one hand, the reality was quite different to the blog. Not intentionally I am sure. The blog put forth the best of her. But only reading the blog I would have got a completely wrong notion of who she was, how she parented her kids (as opposed to how she thought she should parent them). Also, how sucessful this parenting actually was for her. The blog showed her sucesses. Anyway, since that experience I've always taken those euphoric blogs with a bit of a grain of salt. They serve a lot of functions and there is nothing wrong with them but unless you know the person writing, I do think, don't ever feel inadequate because of them.
(I kind of think doing hours of work with a 5 year old is crazily intense, unless they're really into it, but maybe that's not ok to say, sorry)
Oh ETA just had a thought. If I were you I'd take a look at the archives of GWS . They seem to move around a bit, last I saw they were at FUN books. The point is there are loads of people in the early days of homeschooling (ykwim, I know its not new...) back in the 70s doing exactly the kind of stuff you are, basically working with kids tagging along, to allow them to homeschool. Holt and others concur that its a really beneficial situation for kids to find themselves in. I think its amazing you're doing this!
Edited by Fillyjonk - 11/7/12 at 2:13pm