Hi! I am Stef Layton ~ Meet the Layton Family!
I’m 40yr old “MOM!” of 2 boys. (if you didn’t scream that please go back & try again)
We live in Orlando Florida. We decided to homeschool in 2008 when we realized Hubs’ travel schedule would prevent him from seeing our boys as much as he wanted.
Our oldest was born in 2003. He loves: soccer, parkour, tennis, guitar, drawing & reading. He struggles with allergy induced asthma.
Our youngest was born in 2007. He loves: animals, cooking shows, Minecraft, and is a free spirit. He has struggled with delayed fine motor skills in his right hand.
Our only daughter and last pregnancy terminated at 17 weeks gestation due to heart failure.
I am a part time teacher on Thursdays. I have taught Hands-On Geography, Medieval History, Latin, and Sign Language. My youngest (4th grade) attends classes there. My oldest (9th grade) is enrolled under a Christian umbrella school where he participates in competitive sports.
I started the Hands-On Learning column for Homeschooling Today magazine in 2016.
Hubs is a golf course architect and travels the world. We try to go with him when we can or incorporate a family vacation into his trips. We’ve been to: Boston, DC, Canada, MN, NC, Yellowstone, Yosemite, CA, CO, and even Scotland to name a few!
When I’m not brainstorming ideas to incorporate quality time with the Layton boys I like to play tennis or take a yoga class. I enjoy reading – nonfiction history.
I started a family journal blog Layton Family Joy back in 2007 when we were busy traveling. But none of our family knew what a blog was then! So I transitioned into a homeschool blog, Educating Laytons.
I did that for many years. Eventually, the desire to make my name great was rotting the joy of helping homeschoolers.
As I started speaking and traveling I grew bitter toward bloggers who became more successful, authored published books, or achieved brand relationships with such little effort.
I felt like I was constantly pushing a dead horse uphill. I started to compare and was painfully aware my blog did not grow fast enough for me. Our lego eBooks stopped selling. I didn’t make enough affiliate money to justify the time I spent writing and editing photos for pageviews. Time ignoring my family for ‘work’ turned me flat out unapologetically angry.
I wrote many ‘guest posts’ and was a paid ‘contributing writer’ for many other blogs, but I was too sour to be thankful for the opportunity. I slowly distanced myself from online friends and writing commitments. I purposely avoided conferences I was supposed to attend.
In early 2015 my blog was hacked and finally deleted. Years of life online abruptly ended. I was removed from the blogging world!
I spent the next two years enjoying my family with no ulterior motives. (staging photos for brands and free stuff)
I assisted a women’s monthly ministry event for local moms called Equipped to Be. I joined a homeschool co-op and volunteered my time to plan field trips. We went on field trips again. I served in the church.
I became friends with women in my church rather than quickly withdrawing to my “online friends“.
These face-to-face friendships have come to mean SO much to me! Not to mention to my family when I’ve needed mommy back-up help.
I discovered how unhealthy I had become – physically – and I started paying attention to my diet and exercise.
Slowly day by day I started to feel content again.
I spent many months wondering about the way I am created and what gifts I can offer – without the desire to get anything back.
2014 I turned 40 and reconnected with my favorite bible verse, Isaiah 61:3
… So they will be called oaks of righteousness a planting of the Lord’s for the display of His splendor.
I felt lead to start praying for my mom friends, so I started Pray for Moms. While sharing scripture and praying for Moms I felt the importance that Quality Time Matters. QT with our children, our spouses, our friends – Quality Time with God.
If I had one thing to tell young moms, busy moms, stressed-out moms, tired moms, working moms, homeschool moms – my own mom … if I could stress to newly married, old marrieds, tired marrieds, working-it-out marrieds … I’d tell them all ~ Quality Time Matters!
That’s why I’m here now. Not tracking pageviews, not building blogger brand relations, but sharing hope so that our children’s generation will be loved by intentional parents!