Welcome to our world of 4 boys, Autism, Homeschooling and life in general.

Hi I'm Angie, busy Homeschooling Mum of 4 young boys aged between 4 and 11 yrs.

Bailey (11) is a huge car enthusiast, particularly classic cars, VW 'Herbie' beetles and VW Combi vans. Bailey lives with Autism (ASD) and Epilepsy but does very well coping with everyday life these days since we made the change to homeschooling back in 2010.

Dane (8) enjoys playing guitar, building Lego masterpieces and all things superhero! Dane also lives with a form of Autism (Aspergers) and a Language developmental delay (Apraxia of speech).

Ehren (5) is our gentle 'giant' and is a keen student in our Homeschool classroom. He enjoys both physical and mental pursuits and has a clear interest in currency!

Fraser (aged 4) is our little pocket rocket. He's a confident, head-strong little boy who never stops talking, singing or dancing!

Follow us on our journey as we learn about the world around us in our own unique way!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Today whilst doing schoolwork with the boys I came to realising just how much incidental learning is going on in our household. Some days I am teaching Bailey a new Maths concept or a new spelling tip and Dane is listening in on the background, only to come out with the information weeks later. Other days I think Dane is learning a new topic and Ehren sits in and seems to be taking in as much as he can as well. It's really quite incredible to think how much they are picking up that I am not going out of my way to teach them!

Today is a classic example. I was teaching Dane about halves and quarters (something that Bailey has only just mastered mind you) and then Ehren asked me for his schoolwork. So I palmed him off the ABC flipchart I had just been using with Dane for his phonics work. Ehren starts flipping over and saying a for apple, c for car, pronouncing the phonic sounds! I swear my head almost spun right around, he's not even 3 yet!!

Then to top it off Fraser is sitting in his highchair beside us and I asked Ehren how many cars there on the table? Fraser (who is 20 mths old may I remind you) starts counting 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9!! He missed a 6 but seriously I can't believe he is counting!! When did this all happen?

I don't really need anyone to remind me these days just how much Homeschooling is working for my big boys. At 8 and 6 yrs old Bailey & Dane are both bright, highly motivated learners. I guess I just really underestimated the positive impact it would have on the two little boys. They certainly don't need to Kindy with the amount of mental stimulation and play they get here at home and they definitely have a lot more friends than my other boys had at ages 1 and 2. Homeschooling works for us, all round :)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Lately it seems I have been receiving many compliments on how organised I am. I must confess to being just a little bit 'anal' but it's really only to counteract the fact that if things aren't in their usual place I tend to have a little meltdown! It's not always easy to keep your cool in a home with 4 boys aged 8 and under, let alone when they are all home each and every day homeschooling with you.

I've been asked for tips on how I keep myself organised for a very long time and up until now I've barely had more than 2 seconds to scratch myself so whilst hubby is working late tonight and I have all the kids in bed early (well before 8pm) here goes.

My best tip is the old saying 'a place for everything and everything in it's place'. The first thing you'll notice when you walk around my house is that I am a big believer in keeping things in boxes in designated areas of the house. We have oodles of white plastic boxes you get from Ikea that house all the kids toys and homeschooling resources but also use them to store each of the boys shoes in.

Knowing exactly where something is when you need it will save you loads of time, when you add up all the minutes in the day you could possibly waste just looking for something. It also means that asking your kids to help tidy up is an easier task as they always know where to put things. When we walk in the door from being out the first thing I say to my boys is go put your shoes away. They then take off their shoes and pop them into their personal shoe box, even the 20 mth old!! It means that the next day when they need to get their shoes on they are in the same place they always are. The boxes are kept in a bookshelf in the hallway. Here we also keep hats, bags and all the kids swimming togs to make it easy to collect what we need quickly should we decide on a whim to head to the beach or a theme park.

The classroom/playroom stores an enormous amount of toys, games, books, school and art supplies. I've made the most of the vertical space in the room by adding in Ikea cube shelf systems to house all the boxes. All the items I don't want little ones getting into like paint and lego are stored at the very top shelf.

One of my biggest tips is for the mountains of washing I encounter, which I'm sure most Mums can relate to. I have a separate large washbasket for each of my boys labelled with their name. When I am sorting the family's washing I order the baskets from biggest child to smallest and throw at each basket til I'm done. I'll normally have a couple of loads to do a time.

Then those baskets sit on top of each of their tallboys ready for putting away as I get time through the day. Sometimes I only have a few minutes free at a time so I just pop in their room and put away as much as I can in that time. It saves me time having this system cos I am looking for something specific in the meantime (for example a pair of shorts for Dane) I don't have to go through copious baskets. I just head straight to his basket and I'll find what I'm looking for quickly and easily. Even better I normally direct the older boys to look in there for what they need. At least this way they're not throwing all my nice clean clothes all over the place in their search.

I have also laid out each of their tallboys in the exact same format so it's easy for me (mostly hubby) to find what I'm looking for quickly. For example the top drawer has undies on the left, singlets in the middle and socks on the right. Second drawer is pyjamas, third drawer is shorts and the bottom drawers are long pants.

Just the last few days I've been busy on my latest organising mission. I picked up a tip from my friend Kylie a long time ago to take all the board games out of their boxes and put them into individual clipseal bags. I decided to give this a tackle as over the years we have managed to build quite a collection and they were taking up 4 cube spots in my large Ikea shelf unit. I bought some large clipseal bags from Ikea, you buy them in bulk in the kitchen area for $4.99 for 15 extra large bags and 15 large bags. You can see from the following pictures how much room I've saved by doing this. Amazing how boxes can take up so much room. I challenge you to give this one a go. It seems hard letting go of the box, but if space is an issue I can guarantee this will help!

Can I also add that the above pic is not accurate of all the boxes being thrown out. There are about another 4 inside larger boxes too!

Anyway I hope that I've managed to help with some tips to keep things organised in your home. If you've got some more for me I'd love to read your blog too, don't be shy!

Until next time
Take care,
Angie xx