I’m a big fan of Mary Ostyn, mom-of-many, blogger, and author of The Sane Woman’s Guide to Raising a Large Family (plus a few other titles, but that’s the only one I’ve read cover-to-cover). When I saw that she was publishing an e-book entitled Practical Homeschooling for Real-World Families, which turns out to be a collection of her homeschooling wisdom learned over these past twenty-some years of homeschooling, I knew I wanted to read it. Everyone can enjoy a good shot in the arm at times, right? And what homeschooling mother doesn’t need that in February? 🙂 I started reading it after it was released on Monday, and I finished it early this morning. What I found wasn’t anything new, really, but what I also found was just what I needed: a bit of encouragement that no, I’m not insane to attempt this, and yes, things really will turn out all right. I’m going to make a confession right now. Ready? I’m pretty driven when it comes to homeschooling. I was a high-achieving high school student. I wear my nerd badge proudly. 🙂 Combine that with the fact that I homeschool my children, and you have the recipe for a potential nervous breakdown. Really. In a providential confluence of events, I shared a devotional at CBS leaders council on Monday that had to with recognizing idols in our own lives. It was mildly painful for me to admit to myself that homeschooling can be that to me. Mary Ostyn helped me see that it’s possible to give your children a good education without making homeschooling your very reason for existing. (Is it too self-revelatory for me to admit that the one thing that I gleaned from this ebook that set my mind at ease the most is this: Mary takes a somewhat laid-back approach with her children’s educations, and her two eldest sons were both recognized as National Merit Finalists? Remember that confession? Yep–driven, high achieving student here. 🙂 ) Again, there’s nothing really new in this book, especially if you’ve been at this for a while. However, it’s totally worth the $5 or so that it costs for anyone looking for a bit of encouragement, and it would be especially worth it to new homeschoolers.