Mom Tip- Not every moment needs to be teachable.

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I have two sisters. No brothers. Growing up, I remember my Dad teaching me how to do all sorts of awesome things that some little girls may not have had a chance to learn to do. One of my favorite memories with my Daddy was learning how to change to oil with him. Back then, we didn’t take the car into the shop, we did it ourselves, in the garage. Car maintenance is something that he felt important to teach me, and I am super grateful for it now that I am a grown adult.

Changing the oil in my car is as important now as it was back then. Unfortunately, I haven’t had time to teach Bug how to change the oil yet… mostly because my garage is still piled high with moving boxes from our international move- which was supposed to be “completed” last summer. Even if it was cleaned out though, I don’t know if I would find time to get the job done at home.

I talk a lot about “teachable moments” on this blog. I tend to keep my eyes peeled for ways to incorporate learning into our everyday life. I feel like I have to. Between working out of the home, and blogging, homeschooling wouldn’t be possible without teachable moments.

Teachable Moment

Full hands, and no time for teaching. 

But let me tell you something… sometimes, mom gets tired. Sometimes, it’s all you can do to tackle your list of what must get done. Sometimes, you have to just focus on the job at hand. And sometimes, you can’t clean out the garage and teach your child how to change the oil in the car.

Enter Walmart and the Automotive Care Center.


Our fancy pants car, and the fancy pants gold Pennzoil to put in it (high mileage cars call for oil specially designed to help keep them leak free and running smoothly)

This week, I packed the kids into our little (old) Mazda3 (in the middle of the school day none the less), and we headed down to get the oil changed. I did explain that you have to change out the old oil with new oil in order to keep your engine clean. I explained that dirty oil makes for unhappy engines, and cars don’t want to run as far or as long (fun fact, cars with Pennzoil can drive an extra 550 miles a year vs cars with dirty oil). But I only explained because someone wanted to know whhhhhhyyyyyy we had to go to the store instead of the swimming pool, and in this house straight answers are the only answers that bring about peace and quiet.

We pulled the car into the garage, and we headed off in the store. In the 27 minutes it took for the technicians to put new Pennzoil in my car, I was able to get all the craft supplies we needed for the next school week, more diapers, a couple meals worth of food, and new shoes for the ever growing masses. I grabbed myself a big ‘ole fountain drink from the front of the store.

And then, we got back into the car, and what do you know, the it was vacuumed out and as clean as a family car could ever be. Heaven.


A job needing done doesn’t need to be extra work for a tired mom.

I didn’t feel a bit of guilt. I think as Moms (and especially as homeschoolers) we feel an immense amount of pressure to always be on top of our game, and to fill every moment with learning. I will admit, I’ve totally been that mom at the grocery store, making the kids calculate the cost of this, and the weight of that, and comparison shopping for the better deal. But not every trip has to be like that.


More lesson-free summer fun!
We set off to find a beach once I had the car ready to go driving- we found some neat places near our new home.

So, put down the lesson plans. Go out, and play. Let your kiddos smell the flowers without having to construct and label a chart about plant parts. Take your kids to the store, and don’t listen to an audiobook in the car. Take time this summer to just be. 

Oh, and get your oil changed. My Daddy says it’s important.

Is it time for you to get a stress-free oil change? From June 10th – September 9th, Pennzoil oil changes will be on Rollback at Walmart ACC {Automotive Care Center} stores. High Mileage price has been rolled back to $35.88, Platinum Full Synthetic is rolled back to $45.88. Read more posts all about car care at the Pennzoil Social Hub.


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  1. Great advice! Sometimes we do just need to step back and be. I was in the store the other day and I was enjoying listening to a mom and her teenage daughter. The mom was asking her to figure up which product between two was the better deal. The teenager sighed and said, “No. I’ve down enough math for today – no more!” too funny!

  2. Great advice! We might not have kids (yet), but I am totally taking your advice! I’m putting everything down and going outside to a pool. Haha! Thanks for sharing the rollback info! #client

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