“Life is school and school is life,” is the mantra at Helaman’s Academy in Redmond, Washington, where head schoolmarm Doreen Blanding plays teacher, nurse, school bus driver, cook, laundress and most importantly mom to a family of five boys and one little princess. Doreen has been homeschooling since the day she went visiting teaching and a sister shared with her this weird and crazy idea of homeschooling. That was back in 1993 when her oldest was just barely two and she has never looked back since.

Doreen was studying elementary education when she left BYU to be with her husband in his new job with Microsoft in her home state of Washington . She would love to go back and get her paper diploma, but for now she loves getting her real life diploma. She feels she has learned more from her “on the job” training as a homeschooling mom than any school room could have taught her.

She loves music, cross stitching, sewing, gardening, reading, learning, scouting, and her family. She has served as a Relief Society President, Young Women’s President, but spent most of her time in primary as a music leader or pianist (her favorite calling). She is a soccer coach, web master and president of Washington State Latter-day Saint Family Educators (WALDSFE) and helps put on a yearly Family Education Conference for LDS families in Washington State . Her main goal in raising and training her children is to prepare them to fulfill the mission the Lord has called them to do (D&C 88:77-80).

Doreen served on the National LDS Homeschool Association Executive Board as Support Group Services Manager. She oversaw the publication of the Leaders' Post and moderated the LDS Homeschool Leaders email group.

Articles by Doreen

  • Geography: A Grand Adventure Awaits
  • A Deck of Cards
  • How To Spell FATHER the Homeschool Way
  • Buying a Car
  • The Good, The Better and The Best
  • LDS Homeschool Teen Group - LYTTS
  • Freedom
  • Power Outage
  • Seeing Into the Future by Looking Back
  • Don't Forget the Ball: Part Four
  • School With the Prophets
  • Don't Forget the Ball: Part Three
  • I'm an Art Idiot
  • Purpose of Activities
  • Don't Forget the Ball: Part Two
  • How to Plan a Simple Youth Conference
  • Teen Conference
  • Under Construction
  • Don't Forget the Ball: A Four Part Series on Teaching Life Skills Through Sports