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  1. #1

    Default How Far Would You Drive?

    So, we are moving. From a city of approx 120,000 to a town of approx 16,000. The town is my hometown, and there are many good things about it: closer to grandma, skiing, a college, and lots of amenities and cultural events for a town of that size.

    However, in a town that size, you know the homeschool community is just not going to be what it was in the bigger city. I have found a solid group, with park days, field trips, etc. that claims to be inclusive - but it's an hour away. Right now I'm saying that it's no big deal to drive that. I mean, I currently drive 35 minutes to the other end of town to get to Target, so what's driving an hour instead. But I'm wondering if I'm being overly optimistic.

    Does anybody regularly drive fairly long distances for community? What's that like? Did anybody try it and decide it was too much?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Arrived ejsmom's Avatar
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    I drive about 40-60 minutes (depending on day, traffic, and location) at least once, sometimes twice, a week to do activities with our inclusive group. I have driven from one county, clear across a second, and into the third, weekly, for months on end. And it has been completely and totally worth it. We found our tribe. The sense of connection, sharing ideas, recipes, curriculum resources, joys, sorrows, potlucks, and so on has made our lives so much richer and homeschooling so much better. Usually on the days we meet up, we take a lunch, and/or stop on the way home, or take out or leftovers for dinner. We also will only do a light day of school work in the evening (or early morning) usually 60-90 minutes, and it will be a bit of math practice, reading, and handwriting. Nothing that starts a big project or gets real involved, but enough that I feel we did something to at least keep skills up. On our "home" days, my DS is more than willing to do more book work to have days out with our group.

    In short, I think it will depend on the group. This was the 3rd or 4th group we tried, so don't give up.
    homeschooling one DS, age 13.

  4. #3

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    We live an more rural area too. I could see driving an hour about once or twice a week and it not getting too irritating, as long as I didn't get stuck in some horrendous traffic.

    Off and on I have been willing to drive 30 minutes to an hour for regular activities.
    A mama who teaches college writing, as well as help her 11-year-old in
    choosing his own life adventure. Using Global Village School to support our desire to develop a sense of social justice and global awareness.

  5. #4

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    I don't make a drive like that but I would if it was a great group and traffic was not an issue.
    I've considered driving to classes offered on the North side of Chicago but the traffic is too unpredictable - so the hour one-way could turn into two or more.
    homeschooled 4th through 8th grade - currently in public high school 10th grade
    Dumplett (girl - age 15) and Wombat (boy - age 15)

  6. #5

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    My husband commutes at least an hour to work each way, and we regularly drive an hour into the city just to look at a house. My sister is 1.5 hours away and our son's best friend is 2 hours away. An hour drive is pretty much nothing for us. :-) At least not now. When my husband first moved down here, an hour commute would have boggled his mind. So i guess it's just what you are used to and comfortable with.

  7. #6

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    If the group is a great fit, I don't think that's too far to drive.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Arrived skrink's Avatar
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    I do it regularly. Our locals are heavily fundie and we do NOT fit in. Some days it's a royal pain, especially in the winter, and once you and your kiddo/s start making friends, play dates, birthday parties, mom's night outs, etc. become a lot more complicated. You'll find that many other people won't want to do the drive (they don't need to - their main group is close by) so it'll be on you to meet up with them. Still, it's been very much worth it to us. Stock up on audiobooks!
    Skrink - mama to my 14 yo wild woman

  9. #8
    Senior Member Enlightened
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    I'd do it. We're military, but our last location commonly had me driving an hour away 2-3 times a week for activities. I don't long term commit to regular groups/group activities an hour away until I've tried them out and made sure they were a good fit, but if it works out I don't mind the drive. Great time to listen to audiobooks!

  10. #9
    Senior Member Arrived TFZ's Avatar
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    Downtown is about 45-1h away for us. I imagine we'll be making that trek more frequently soon. Here it's not the distance that's maddening - it's the traffic. Audiobooks do make it more tolerable.

    I remember driving 1h each way in high school to take art classes that were only 1-1/2 hours long, and yeah DH used to commute almost an hour 5-6 day a week. An hour isn't so bad. Now, since loading up the kids, snacks, books, blah blah, etc. takes so long I make an effort to make a day of it if we are going far - activity, lunch, park. At least so I'm not traveling for twice the time.
    I'm a work-at-home mom to three, homeschool enthusiast, and avid planner fueled by lattes and Florida sunshine. My oldest is 6 and is a fircond grader (that's somewhere between first and second, naturally), my preschooler just told me she wants to learn how to read, and my toddler is a force of nature.

    I gather all kinds of secular homeschool resources and share them at TheHomeschoolResourceRoom.com.

  11. #10

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    Im believing there is an inverse relationship between number of kids you have and how far you will drive.
    I was reminiscing with Grama that before I had kids, it was nothing for us to drive an hour each way to eat at a restaurant we liked. With one kid, it was about half that, and with two kids, we would rather stick with a 15 minute radius.

    So my formula for *har far would I drive* looks like:
    (# minutes willing to go to a casual event before kids)
    / [(# of kids) + 1]
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.

    Atheist.

    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

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How Far Would You Drive?