Heart-to-Heart with Diane

Hello and Welcome! Isn't raising a family the greatest!? I know I've got the best job in the world, just being Mom! I love sharing things I've discovered that make being "Mom" better, easier or more fulfilling, and that is what this blog is all about. Welcome!

Monday, March 1, 2010

10th Annual Homeschool Prom!

Our 10th Annual Homeschool Prom

Saturday night was a magical night for my daughter Louisa. She has "only been waiting my whole life" (as she puts it!) to go to the Homeschool Prom! She is finally old enough, and spent weeks designing and sewing her dream dress—an education in itself. And then she danced, and danced and danced. She came home with stars in her eyes and is still smiling about it!

A magical time for my daughter Louisa

And yes, this is the 10th year that we've put on this special no-date dance. What we do for our kids, huh?! My real desire is to create a counter culture—an alternative to the pop culture that is so invasive in our world, and often so detrimental to raising good kids. We cannot leave a vacuum and expect much success. If we don't want our kids listening to bad music or doing suggestive dancing, then there has to be a bright alternative that appeals to them.

Some highlights of the night: we had a brother/sister team dance the floor show, a cute and innocent cha cha routine. And there was the Twist Contest, with so much energy! We also had a university dance instructor come and teach us to do some English dancing, which was a great new option: stately and beautiful dancing from history to excellent music! I think Jane Austen would have highly approved.

Girls too young to come to prom are thrilled to come and take care of the refreshment table.

I really do get a lot of enjoyment out of watching these good teens, modestly dressed having a great time dancing to good music. They have so much fun! And oh how they enjoy dressing up in formal wear! The girls were sparkling in their modest prom dresses, upswept hairdos, and all. The boys looked great in their ties and dress-up clothes. Parents came too and danced. I love to see the daddy-daughter couples—so sweet. One mom came with a diamond tiara in her hair, looking very lovely. There is no generation gap here. I danced myself into oblivion too—who can resist the fun? (and I could barely walk the next day . . . it's hard for me to remember that I am not 16 years old anymore.)

Louisa dances with her Dad

My daughter Julianna, who has taken oodles of dance classes in college, taught a free ballroom dance class for the 6 weeks preceding the Homeschool Prom, so all the kids would know a waltz from a polka. That has been a lot of fun too. Teens are much more confident if they know some steps when the music starts!

My son Ammon enjoying the dance!

This is a good thing. I'm glad we put in the effort required to make this dance happen each year. It gives homeschooled teens the real experience—all the dazzle and excitement of going to Prom, with other high-standarded kids, wholesome music, and happy memories of a magical evening!

My 3 beautiful daughters: Louisa, Julianna and Emily

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  • At March 2, 2010 at 12:30 AM , Blogger The Educational Revolution said...

    Just simply gorgeous! And the dance wasn't too bad either! lol Your daughters are very pretty.

    My son was there, but he didn't dance much. Too afraid to ask the girls I think. lol

    I wasn't able to make it this year. I miss my yearly prom! ;)

    Thanks for putting this on each year! You are a treasure!


  • At March 2, 2010 at 4:36 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    How wonderful Diane! I wish there was something like that here in the south. Your daughters do look lovely.

  • At March 2, 2010 at 6:51 AM , Blogger Debbie said...

    I've been receiving your catalogs and using your website for several years, and I can't believe how tall Louisa is now! You have lovely daughters, and I think your ideas for the homeschool dance are really creative and very nice (I would so love to learn the Jane Austen-era English dance)!

  • At March 2, 2010 at 7:16 AM , Blogger Phyllis said...

    Just beautiful!

  • At March 2, 2010 at 7:50 AM , Blogger emiliahmama said...

    Beautiful Diane! I am so excited for my 2 daughters to have something like this to enjoy when they get old enough. You have inspired me to make alternatives to what the world offers. If it is done well the choice is a no brainer which to fall into. Thanks for sharing! Love Liz Stone

  • At March 3, 2010 at 11:00 PM , Blogger The FitzGerald Family said...

    Louisa's dress was gorgeous! My mother used to make my formal dresses. I would draw a picture of what I wanted, and then she would make the dream come true. As a senior I made my own dresses.

    It was great getting to see the pics of another homeschool dance where modesty and good wholesome fun was encouraged. We participated in a similar dance for New Year's Eve this year. You can a video of it on our family blog:

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful family.
    Liz in CA

  • At March 5, 2010 at 7:18 PM , Blogger Tammy said...

    My older two boys and my husband (who volunteered as a chaperone) are at our homeschool group's English Country Dance tonight. It's a no-date kind of dance with the following rules: you cannot dance with the same partner all evening; if there is a young lady without a dance partner, you must ask her to dance; and as young lady, if a gentleman asks you to dance, you must say yes (no rejection!) The girls make their own regency-style dresses, and the young men wear suits and ties. Like you, I'm glad that there is a wholesome alternative to the world's activities.
    Tammy in NC

  • At March 6, 2010 at 12:05 AM , Blogger Diane Hopkins said...

    Tammy in NC,
    Please tell us more! How did your son and husband learn to do English Country Dancing? Is this a homeschool group or a community one? Do you have a caller who calls the dances and teaches them as you go, or do the teens already know the dances? I am very interested in hearing more!

    ; 0 ) Diane

  • At March 6, 2010 at 9:36 PM , Blogger Diane Hopkins said...

    How fun Liz! I loved seeing the photos on your blog. It really warms my heart to see homeschoolers doing these kinds of dances! What a counter-culture effort, and how good they feel to attend! Hurray!

  • At March 8, 2010 at 5:43 AM , Blogger Candice said...

    Love this idea! I hope that something like this will come together when my children are older! Great idea to have an opportunity for the kids to learn some classic dances, so they have something modest to DO on the dance floor.

  • At March 11, 2010 at 7:23 PM , Blogger Tammy said...

    There is a lady in our area who calls the dances. On a Friday night, a week before the dance, those who have signed up to come to the dance, get together in casual clothes, and this lady teaches them the different dances. And yes, this is an annual homeschool group activity.
    Tammy in NC


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