Farida Baxamusa Jhaveri is a mom of two girls, currently living in San Francisco, California with her family. A Geologist by profession and an adventurer at heart, Farida loves to be outdoors and enjoys playing with rocks and dirt along with doing hands-on projects and playing math card games with her daughters. In this blog, she shares answers to questions she is frequently asked and what motivates her to make the choices she makes, both for her children and her career as a businesswoman.
For me, life is about living every moment. At times you’ll find me living in tents to explore the gorgeous California Geology with my students, or hiking, or doing messy, but fun, hands on science and math activities with my daughters, or perhaps obsessing over our homeschool room book collection, or talking about businesses and brands I personally like and recommend. All the while trying to stay sane and being a good mom, wife, daughter and daughter-in-law.
Such a small glimpse of my life might look sorted to many who’d not know me personally, however, I’ll be candid, I am not that sorted for the most part of my day. Come to my home during the day and you will come across a clutter of books, DIY stuff and whatnot!
However, I am asked all the time about the choices I make and how I go about making decisions especially in my children’s lives; hence here is an attempt to answer some questions as honestly as possible.
Do your kids really not go to school?
No they do not! As a family we have taken this decision to home educate our girls, to make learning fun, hands on, individualised and to spend more time together. Homeschooling is the best decision we have taken, it’s a lifestyle we live and absolutely love.
What about their socialization?
But did your teachers never tell you, ‘you are at school to study and not to socialise.’ Jokes apart, but being a Waldorf high school teacher for four years and a community college professor for the past ten, I have seen students who sit next to each other but hardly talk!
I believe homeschooled children have many opportunities in a day to socialise with friends and people of all ages. Time spent at sports classes, museums, parks, homeschool co-ops, etc give us immense opportunities to experience good social skills. Every homeschooling family I know has too many opportunities for socialisation! As homeschoolers, we actually have to learn to say no sometimes.
You must have a lot of patience to home school your children.
I am working on my patience every single day. As a homeschooling parent, you just get more opportunities to work on improving your patience. I have come to realise that more than patience; you need love, interest and a desire to teach and learn.
About my journey on social media.
My journey on social media began in 2015 when I started my business D.I.Y. Rida’z and used Instagram to connect and promote it.
Since the time I began, I have come to interact and collaborate with women of my beautiful community. After two years in the business, I decided to start my own brand by the name ‘Brings Joy’, a creative lifestyle brand with a focus on modest clothing, style, home, education and all of the other little things that make life so joyful. Since its inception, the Brings Joy brand has expanded to include consulting, conventions, brand ambassadorship and positive influencing.
So, with all the homeschooling and business marketing, what does a day in your life look like?
I usually wake up before my kids, prepare breakfast along with my husband, then wake the kids up and have breakfast together. Mornings aren’t very rushed at our place. My daughters help us a lot with house chores, from picking dishes, loading unloading the dishwasher to folding laundry. We work as a team at home. School day begins around 9 AM with me helping my daughters memorise chapters from the Quran which is then followed by Math games and turns to reading good literature together. Fun science experiments, social studies and creative writing happens almost twice a week. I work twice a week at a community college, teaching geology labs and conducting lectures for three hours. That’s when my husband dutifully drops the girls for their extra curricular activities from Mad science, to writing camps, to sports.
When off lecture duties, I spend my afternoons working on my business while my daughters have quiet time and are mostly reading books and aren’t supposed to disturb mommy. We spend most of our early evenings outdoors, either hiking trails we haven’t explored or sitting by a creek we love or playing at a park. We return home to fresh food received from our community kitchen, which is one of the biggest blessings every working family could have received. We call it a night after dinner and a light board game with the family and its lights off after reading a book to the girls.
I am inspired by positivity and like to influence those around me in a positive way as well. I use social media to inform others about lifestyle choices I make on a daily basis, be it home educating my children, taking care of my mental health by going on regular runs, the little things I do to give back to our environment, talking about the jobs I work to support my business, or be it showing my adventurous side and love for hiking and collecting rocks and minerals wherever I go. My advice to anyone who uses social media to consume content is to not compare your life to anyone’s portrayed on social media. Use social media to grow your business and market it to a world audience or learn and sharpen your skills, or get reassurance about the positive decisions you make in your life.