By Tara Buchanan

Welcome!
Hi! We’re Joe and Tara and we’re so glad you have stopped by! Peek around for a little bit of our marriage behind our smiles. No one’s story is perfect and every marriage struggles. But we rejoice in the story that God has given us and know that He is not done with us yet. We hope by sharing what God has done in our marriage it will give you hope for yours!
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Audio Library of Behind Our Smiles radio segments

What we are talking about lately...

What if they don’t like reading?

My biggest piece of advice to a homeschooler, or really to any parent in general, is to have their kids read and read a lot.  Learning to read and comprehend all the words out there is such an important skill that translates to all areas of life. The love of reading leads to so many ... VIEW POST

Don’t overcomplicate it!

To my new homeschoolers: Don’t feel the need to overcomplicate things and make a minute by minute plan of the entire school year this very second.  Major on the majors.   All the details will fall into place as you focus on the essentials of a good education: 1.  Reading.   ... VIEW POST

The Bench

This is our bench. We bought it about ten years ago and it’s become our spot to sit, especially in the mornings when we have coffee. It wasn’t a particularly fancy or expensive bench, but now it’s part of the family because it’s where we do life. (Yes, we live in Illinois so there is a massive ... VIEW POST

Lead the way and learn!

Here’s what you might be doing, as an adult learner, tackling the new subject called, Homeschooling 101. You have spent time thinking about your educational options and have landed on homeschooling even though your understanding is limited.  Now what? 1. You begin to talk to others in your ... VIEW POST

How much is enough?

FAQ: As a homeschooler, how do I know when we’re doing enough? Spending enough time, doing enough subjects, giving the kids a "good education"? Enough is such a subjective question!  The culture around us is always saying “more” and that as moms we should be doing “better”.   It’s even ... VIEW POST

A few thoughts on homeschooling!

This is the time my 7-year-old decided to have all his stuffed animals do his school for him! Homeschooling is a huge undertaking, and it often requires a huge investment of time and energy. But that doesn't mean it isn't doable for the average family! Contrary to popular opinion, ... VIEW POST

The Marks of a Faithful Man

Faithfulness.   There are a lot of positive things I can say about my husband but whether we are are in the best of times or our worst of times,  I am sure of one thing:  he is faithful. Sometimes we think of being faithful in marriage as oh, we didn’t commit adultery. (Okay, so ... VIEW POST

A lunch packed with love

I haven’t bought brown paper bags in for-ever. But with Joe working in an office now I get to pack his lunch! Plus with paper bags I can even decorate the outside :) And I really can't complain because he's a simple man who is very happy to eat peanut butter and jelly every day :) I know some ... VIEW POST

Education is a partnership!

Over the years as I have talked with many potential homeschoolers, one of the common concerns is, “my kids would never listen to me!” Well, welcome to the club, I don’t know many kids who always listen to their parents. But don’t confuse the two: Your kids’ ability to listen is a parenting issue- ... VIEW POST