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4quivers
11-11-2012, 07:51 PM
Ok, so I need to vent and get a bit of encouragement. I'm frustrated up to tears. I live in the middle of BF Kansas. Seriously, the only homeschooler in my town, and the only secular homeschooler in the area. I've been hunting, hunting, hunting, out every homeschooler and all are super religious. So I turn to extra-curricular activies. What town does not need a children's arts group? Started one, 3 months of theater, 3 months of storytelling. Theater went great, 16 girls with my 2 boys. This is Rural Ks,small towns few and far between, had not 1 support from my "hometown", with the last 3 months with 0 attendance until the Storytelling Festival, the final show. Tried 4-H. Seriously, 6 months and my boys know how to say the Pledge of Allegiance, how to sit through a meeting, and that it's boring. Even I was bored out of my mind. Tried a "more organized" 4-H of another town. Well, tonight's meeting was changed to last week, and no one out of town was notified. I can teach my boys irresponsibility myself! There is NO junior olympics, NO local orchestra, NO all-inclusive groups, NO Chess Club, NO, NO, NO, NO, NO!!!! I'm left with an after-school reading group that the librarian has informed me she's over her limit "Hello Fire-Marshall", and boy scouts, which we pretty much live like the boyscouts practice so it seems a bit useless (for now!) HELP! Isn't there anything my 4 boys can do that gets them involved but doesn't have to include driving 2 hrs? We do have Baseball for 1 month of the yr. I need 11 more months worth and the only thing I have on the agenda is Violin/Cello lessons ( I hope!)

Stressed out of my mind with 4 little boys in tow!!!

farrarwilliams
11-11-2012, 08:03 PM
Ugh. No advice as I'm in an urban area and we kinda have the opposite problem. So hugs instead. And good for you for starting something up, even if it didn't work out entirely as you planned, it sounds like.

If your kids have friends or are happy with each other, then really, just doing your own thing is okay too. Extracurriculars are, indeed, extra.

Stella M
11-11-2012, 08:07 PM
With four boys, can you put the energy into doing fun family stuff instead ? Hiking maybe ? Or swimming, if you have the facilities...

Get into nature walks/observation/study ?

I don't know how old your kids are, but we went through periods of few activities, and getting outside regularly and for good chunks of time was a key to keeping my sanity.

You are probably burnt out on running a group, but two successful groups I have run were book club and a reader's theatre group.

Volunteering as a family ?

Put up a notice at the library looking for another family to learn chess with ?

Crabby Lioness
11-11-2012, 08:32 PM
We live in a town of 600 notorious for being in the middle of the pines.

I feel you pain.

crunchynerd
11-11-2012, 08:50 PM
4 boys = a team!
I know a family with 5 boys, and they even have a sign in their yard, "Wrigley Field" as a sort of joke, because all those boys need is each other, and their admittedly GREAT home and yard! Of course I am not making light of your situation...but if my 2 boys were closer in age at their ages (going on 2, and just turned 5) they'd be a barrel of monkeys and endless Tigger-style fun-fun-fun, all in themselves! THey just need a padded room to do it in!

I hope you get a break, but if you KNOW you are in the middle of endless miles of open prairie and Uber-religious homeschoolers, and nothing else, it may be time to just dig in and make opportunities for your 4 boys to be each other's best friends, at least to get them (and you) through until something comes forward. Also, why not Scouts? Even if they are doing stuff like that all the time anyway (yay!) that just means they'll be doing really well in Scouting, right? I'd check there first, unless you have objections to the religious and/or moral viewpoint of Boy Scouts USA.

May luck be with you, and FWIW, you have my sympathy for living where you live. My DH was stationed out there back when he was in the Army, and wow. He'd never seen anything like it, and hopes not to do so again, though his bias may be in part because of living in Germany, and then finding out that only watered-down beer is allowed in Kansas LOL

EmmaNadine
11-11-2012, 09:56 PM
How about geocaching?

lynne
11-12-2012, 10:32 AM
I just got my 7 year old involved in scouts and I finally feel like I've found something that suits him, gives him social interaction and it's so much fun. They just went camping over the weekend and went for a hike, played Ultimate Frisbee, had their awards ceremony, sang songs, did skits, made smores. My husband said he loved it! The group we found happens to have a lot of homeschooled kids and it's a very active group. They meet every week and there's always something going on. I would give it a shot.

Christy
11-12-2012, 10:47 AM
How old are your boys? What's your goal for extracurricular activities? (Is it to make friends? Is it to feel part of a group? To get used to participating in groups? To learn new skills?)

4quivers
11-12-2012, 01:14 PM
My boys, ages 10,8,4,2 need social interaction. Yes, they do well with each other, but they need to get around other people sometimes. We live in the country with no kids for miles. We do lots of things the older generation does, so they do interact with older people, but nothing with kids. They are not interested in sports, only the odd ones like sword-fighting, archery, chess, and probably some other things. I want them to know how to be in a group of peers, and still hold firm to our beliefs. You know, the ones we don't have and everybody else does!!! I can find a ton of Christian groups, of all kinds. But we just can't do that. Boy Scouts would be fine, but the local leader is a "Hell fire and damnation" woman, and the "baseball bullies" are in the group. Baseball bullies have a really hard time with boys who don't believe in Jesus. I'm willing to do training at home for once in a while groups of a distance away like Junior Olympics. Space camp possibly this summer, maybe the Orchestra 2 hrs away but need to start lessons first. I'm sure I'll find something, I'm just tired of looking for sooooo long. Thanks for all the ideas! Geocaching!!! There's one at the Big Ball of Twine that their grandfather started 5 miles away. What a great idea!!!!

4quivers
11-12-2012, 01:15 PM
What I want most is for them to have friends!

Stella M
11-12-2012, 03:05 PM
Trouble with Scouts is that pesky homophobia thing.

Good luck! It's tough dealing with a friendship drought.

farrarwilliams
11-12-2012, 04:16 PM
Could you maybe start your own 4-H chapter or see if you could become a leader? The 4-H program has so many cool things - like robotics, for example. And it would be an established group that isn't the BSA and if your local group is disorganized now, then you might get a lot of interest.

Jeni
11-12-2012, 05:58 PM
Could you maybe start your own 4-H chapter or see if you could become a leader? The 4-H program has so many cool things - like robotics, for example. And it would be an established group that isn't the BSA and if your local group is disorganized now, then you might get a lot of interest.


We lived in Kansas for a few years. I don't envy you. The above is a good idea. Our 4H is for homeschoolers and was started by a mom who needed other options for her kids. Or become a leader for Boy Scouts. Try leading one of the many other scouting type groups. Have you looked at Meetup to see what's there? What about taking a class or learning a skill?

Why does it have to be an organized per-existing group activity? Why not start setting aside two days a month and invite some kids from your local area. Maybe from the arts class you started. Just let the kids play and have fun. Maybe have a theme or idea, but just let the kids bond and make friends. Encourage them to invite their friends and make it a routine until you find something else. Invite their folks to satay and get to know them. Just an idea. :)

MrsLOLcat
11-13-2012, 11:04 AM
I don't know what part of Kansas you're in, but I know that in the tiny town where I grew up, new activities were (and still are) considered suspect if it's not sanctioned by a church or by the school system. We had one dance teacher come through when I was about 5 or 6, and she taught for a couple years until one of the parents got her dander up because she was using popular music (1980s music like "Electric Youth" and such) for the older girls, and next thing we knew, the teacher had quit teaching and moved away. *sigh*

Anyway, I like Jeni's idea of just having a play/hangout group. That can easily morph into doing arts and crafts or science experiments and go from there if you stick with it. I hope you're able to figure something out. That's rough.

HappyGal
11-13-2012, 11:31 AM
Wow, you sound like us! We also live in BF KS and there is nothing to do unless you want to drive 30-45 minutes. Where do you live? We live in Abilene so there is a military base near by (about 30 minutes) that has a secular group and you don't have to be military to go. Also, if you go to your towns welcome center they should be able to tell you some things around to do. KS sucks for secular homeschoolers or for people that like fun educational entertainment. To make things even worse, we live on a farm in the middle of no where so there are not any neighborhood kids for our kids to play with. But hey, my town of 6,000 people has 42 different churchs. To bad we are not Christian...it would be soo easy to find stuff to do!

4quivers
11-13-2012, 05:48 PM
But hey, my town of 6,000 people has 42 different churchs. To bad we are not Christian...it would be soo easy to find stuff to do![/QUOTE]

That is sooo true! Just in Ks alone there are over 2000 different sects of Christianity. Man, wouldn't it be awesome to be chirstian! You can find a group for anything you like! Bikers for Christ, Christian Athletes, Punk Christians!, Ex-Druggy Christians, Gays for Jesus, blah blah blah!! Where's my "People for People!!!" I'm still about 2 hrs from Abilene! Otherwise I'd be at Fort Riley all the time.

farrarwilliams
11-13-2012, 06:07 PM
42 churches for 6,000 people? Well, then clearly you need to start a church. That's the only activity going in town that works. ;) How about FSM? Get yourself ordained and start up your Sunday school. Surely that will work... right?:rolleyes:

skrink
11-13-2012, 07:08 PM
This conversation got me curious, so I hauled out the yellow pages. In our town of about 40,000 souls we have nearly 150 churches, some of them gargantuan. I don't know how they fill them all. We had a neighbor start his own church in his basement - they got enough interest to start renting space somewhere. :/ I'm all for starting your own FSM group. You'll need a good cover story, though. :)