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What About School for the Kids?

We get asked that often. IMG_0505

We thought we had more time. Our little baby will be ready for Kindergarten NEXT YEAR! Where has the time gone?

Really, where has the time gone?

We hit Jackson, Wy and we decided to visit the Teton Science School and take a look at their elementary program in the Journey School. It was a nice tour, food for thought and all that until the rep mentioned that Emma could enroll as February 2012.

IMG_0504WHAT! We knew the days was coming but we didn’t think it would be right around the corner.

So what are we going to do?

Well, Emma was born in October. According to Wyoming (and probably a lot of other states) Emma wouldn’t be able to attend kindergarten, even with testing, until she was actually 5. They go to school late August. That means Emma would literally turn 6 a month into kindergarten. We think that is too late. She would likely be the tallest (she is taller than boys a year older than her all ready) and one of the most advanced in her class. We don’t want that for her. We want her to be stimulated and challenged, not bored. All ready, Emma prefers to play with older children than peers.

First, we are 90% certain we will homeschool Emma for kindergarten. It’s not such a huge leap, thankfully.

We like our Mexico time on the sailboat. One, we can afford to live there. But we also feel very strongly there is a lot to be learned living on a sailboat. In addition to the skills learned on a sailboat and the exposure to the natural sciences, there is the family time together. That’s important to us. We didn’t wait this long to have children to have a stranger raise them for us, which is what would have happened if Hil and I both had to go back to work to be a traditional American family.

So we aren’t planning on scrapping the “living on a sailboat in Mexico during the winter” plan. We will have to homeschool the kids for that period. The obvious benefit would be the kids get a chance to learn a second language straight from the source.

We hit the road around mid May back to the states to prepare for the summer work season traveling around the Rocky Mountain States. We would continue the homeschooling through the regular school period.

Here’s where things get interesting.

For the last two seasons, we have ended our season in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Jackson, the home to many rich and famous people, would normally be WAY WAY outside our budget. Hil has been working in Jackson at the Arts Center long before children and long before we even met. She has a strong network of friends and contemporaries who, by now, have children that are similarly aged as our two kids.

Hil also has her mentor, Babs Case, in Jackson. Babs is the director of Dance Wyoming (among other things) and was/is a huge influence on Hil and a good person to boot. So there’s a fair chance Hil can find temporary/recurring work in Jackson teaching the fall semester at the Arts Center.

The only real hitch in Jackson is housing. It’ll be too cold for us to bring the motorhome. They actually get A LOT of snow. We would need to find a temporary furnished accommodation that will fit into our budget based on what ever we can earn while living there.

So the current plan is to stay in Jackson from September through December before heading down to Mexico. 2012 will be a trial year. We plan on homeschooling Emma anyways but at least we can work out some of the other details before enrolling her into a school.

I would likely keep working in September and October wrapping up the entertainment season. Hil would stay in Jackson with the kids. November we spend marketing the Young Guns Wild West Fun Park at two conventions but one happens to be in Montana reasonably close.

For me, mister logistics and bean counter (by default not by choice), this means a whirlwind of decisions. Do we keep the 34′ motorhome if we are only using it 3 months a year? Where do we store it and how much will it cost to maintain and store? What kinds of vehicle do we need for Jackson and how do we get it there? Where do we store the trailers, Arizona or Wyoming?

Many of these questions will reveal themselves as we move forward. In the meantime, I try not to think too much about what may come in the distant future. It hurts my brain thingy.

You know an ICE COLD draft beer in Mexico is a very affordable price of approximately $1.25! Click Here to Buy Us a Beer.

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