The Story Behind the Name Psychowith6

The Story Behind the Name Psychowith6

People have mixed reactions to my blog name (and social media handle). Some people think I’m a scary person. When I comment on Periscope, people don’t want to refer to me as Psycho. That’s understandable. Many people laugh. Today I want to tell you the story behind the name.

The Story Behind the Name Psychowith6

Years ago I had mom friends who chatted online using instant messenger. Can you tell how long ago that was? I wanted to come up with a funny handle for myself.


I tried to incorporate the fact that I am a psychologist. I’m a clinical psychologist who started practicing in a Christian practice. As the only female psychologist, I saw every kind of client. I really enjoyed working as part of a team when we had an inpatient unit. I enjoyed outpatient less because there was so little time for professional interaction. It made this sanguine lady lonely.

When I was pregnant with my first, I asked to go part-time, which my supervisor was glad to accommodate. I thought that would be the perfect situation. But then my baby kept getting ear infections from being in daycare, even part-time. I constantly had to cancel appointments. So I decided to work just two evenings a week. When my second son was born, I quit completely.

People often tell me that I can go back to counseling when I’m done homeschooling. But I don’t see myself doing that. When I was pregnant with my first baby, I taught psychology at the university and I absolutely loved it. Teaching is my first love: teaching my own children and now teaching through this blog, my podcast, social media, and conferences.

With 6

I had just had my sixth baby when I created the handle. The truth is I wasn’t nearly as psycho with six as I had been with three. I had three children ages three and under, one of which had a difficult temperament. I had no older children to help me.

The fourth, fifth, and sixth babies were relatively easy. But I’ve had my share of challenging times. You may want to read why I’ll never be a perfect homeschooler. After prayer, my coping strategy of choice for dealing with the demands of parenting and homeschooling a large family is humor. So many of the things I thought were disastrous when the kids were little now just seem funny. I wish I hadn’t wasted so much anxiety on them.

Now I hope to bring that perspective to moms in the trenches. I share from a psychologist’s, veteran homeschooling mom’s perspective. But I also share from my heart. I would love to have you subscribe so you won’t miss a post.

Be sure to read the story behind the other iHN blogs’ names.

iHN story behind my blog name

read more
The Friendship Challenge: Week 17

The Friendship Challenge: Week 17

Build your kids' and your own friendships this week of the Organized Homeschool Challenge. Start planning a May Day surprise!I worried that I wouldn’t have enough friends and neither would my children when I was deciding to homeschool. Today we are all blessed with wonderful friends. I don’t think we could have continued to homeschool all these years without them. This week, we will work on establishing friendships and strengthening those we have.

#1 Plan activities with kids’ friends.

If you already have friends and acquaintances, now is a good time to make plans with them. Often, adult and kid friendships fade simply because no one takes the initiative to plan a get together. This is especially true over the summer.

Some of the things we have done in the summers to keep friendships strong include camping together, having regular barbecues, and vacationing together. Ask the kids what they would like to do with their friends this summer and even into the school year.

#2 Discuss options for new friends.

One of the best choices we made was to participate in a homeschool P.E. class. I had learned from veteran homeschool moms that this was the best way for kids to make friends and they were right. Ask other homeschoolers how they have established friendships for themselves and their kids and take their advice.

Of course, friendships don’t all have to be centered around homeschooling. Your church, neighborhood, and extracurricular activities are also opportunities to make friends. Don’t wait for someone else to make the first move. Invite people to your home and see if you click. If not, try again. Discuss people you’d like to approach as a family and pray about it. God may suggest a friendship that you hadn’t considered.

#3 Plan mom activities

I have never felt guilty for being away from my family to spend time with my girlfriends. I need that time to be the best wife and mother I can be. My friends have helped me see that my struggles are typical and have given me wonderful, godly advice as well.

Being in a homeschool co-op and attending homeschool P.E. classes have given me the opportunity to talk with my friends. But we have taken it a step further by going out to celebrate one another’s birthdays, going out as couples, and as I mentioned, taking family vacations together. Participating in a moms’ Bible study and women’s retreats at church have also been ways to connect with friends.

Discuss potential activities with your friends for the summer and ideas you could use throughout the school year.

#4 Plan a May Day surprise for friends

One tradition I really miss is May Day. When I was a kid, we would put baskets of goodies together (usually for a neighbor), put it on their doorstep, ring the doorbell, and run away before we were caught. Once when I did this, the woman caught me before I could get away. She proceeded to chew me out for pulling a prank. When she looked down and saw the basket, she started to cry.

Despite my neighbor’s bad reaction, I love the idea of surprising people. Talk with the kids about how to surprise a couple of their friends. Here is a May Day basket printable the kids can decorate and fill with flowers or candy. This May Day basket with flower centers made from candy would be easy for the kids to make as well. These candy-filled flower cups would be a great surprise for kids or moms. Your mom friends would love a basket of flowers ready to plant. These printable tags are a beautiful addition to whatever May Day surprise you’d like to plan.

Follow the Organized Homeschool board for pictures of these and other May Day ideas.


Follow Dr. Melanie’s board Organized Homeschool on Pinterest.

Here is this month’s free printable organized homeschool calendar for April 2014 and a list of previous weeks’ challenges.

Get your home, family, and homeschool organized this month with this free printable calendar.

Organized Homeschool Challenge

Week 1: Daily Devotions Challenge

Week 2: Daily Routine Challenge

Week 3: To-Do List Challenge

Week 4: Memory Keeping Challenge

Week 5: The Decluttering Challenge

Week 6: The Organized Computer Challenge

 Week 7: The Marriage of Your Dreams Challenge

Week 8: The Confident Parent Challenge

Week 9: The Extended Family Challenge

Week 10: The Bring on the Spring Challenge

Week 11: The Spring Cleaning Challenge

Week 12: The Organized Easter Challenge

Week 13: The Serve the Church Challenge

Week 14: The Chore Challenge

Week 15: The Organize Your Finances Challenge

Week 16: The Curriculum Challenge

read more
The Best Pinterest Boards for Homeschool Sanity

The Best Pinterest Boards for Homeschool Sanity

The best Pinterest boards for Homeschool Sanity. Get the curriculum, organizing, and parenting tips you need!

I’ve been homeschooling for 14 years, but I still need sanity savers. I usually turn to Pinterest to find them. When I need ideas for a unit study, motivation to get organized, or clever parenting tips, that’s where I go.

When I find something that I think will make homeschooling simpler, I pin it for me and for the homeschoolers who follow me. If you’d like a little more homeschool sanity, I recommend you follow these five boards and share them, too. When you click on a board link below, you’ll see the option to follow it and to send it to a friend (with an airplane icon).

organized homeschool, challenge, daily, calendar

#1 Organized Homeschool

The Organized Homeschool board is where I put the Organized Homeschool Challenge posts and related pins. Unlike other organizing challenges, this one is tailor-made for homeschoolers and isn’t just about decluttering. It’s about building relationships, planning for special events, and streamlining school. Organized Homeschool is a contributor board* which means other pinners are busy adding content they think will help you simplify your homeschooling, too.

homeschool printables, back to school

#2 What’s Hot in Homeschooling

The What’s Hot in Homeschooling board took over the weekly roundup series I was doing on Psychowith6. It’s where I pin the best homeschooling ideas I come across with a seasonal emphasis. What’s wonderful is I have a number of contributors* who add tips, reviews, and printables for your attention, too.

#3 The Homeschool Sanity Show

I’ll be honest and say I didn’t know if The Homeschool Sanity Show would fly when I started it. I didn’t often listen to podcasts before I started one myself! But now I’m so excited when I finish an interview with an expert in homeschooling that I can’t wait to share it with people. That says a lot because I’ve attended homeschool conferences for many years and I’m still learning! I pin new podcasts to The Homeschool Sanity Show board and pins on related topics. If you subscribe to the podcast (or even if you don’t), you’ll appreciate having links to related sanity-saving resources.

Keeping family strong, homeschooling Bible, baking with toddlers, have a family game night

#4 Christian Inspiration

It may seem strange that I’m including the Christian Inspiration board for homeschool sanity, but I find that if faith isn’t first in my life, my homeschooling can go downhill in a hurry. I love this board with many contributors because I always find something to read that encourages me to draw nearer to the Lord, give Him my burdens, and carry on with my homeschooling.

#5 Christian Parenting

If you’ve homeschooled a while like I have, you’ve probably been asked how you separate your roles as teacher and parent. The answer, of course, is you don’t. You’re both! I have found that when the parent part of me is sane, the teacher is, too. I use this Christian Parenting board to share inspirational posts as well as ideas for dealing with behavior problems. I’m a psychologist with six kids and I really benefit from the great ideas other parents share on Pinterest. I think you will, too.

Of course, I’d love for you to follow all of my boards. I have boards for the major subject areas, recipe categories, productivity, and more.  The best way to make sure you get all the posts and freebies, too, is to subscribe to Psychowith6.

*Are you a blogger who would like to contribute to What’s Hot in Homeschooling, Organized Homeschool, or Christian Inspiration? Be sure to follow the boards and email me your Pinterest link at psychowith6 {at} gmail [dot] com.

To see even more of the best boards for Homeschool Sanity, see Our Pintastic Pinboards.

ihomeschool network best Pinterest boards

read more

Pin It on Pinterest