Tuesday, March 28, 2006

TV Free Time

In response to Crystal's contest, I thought I would share what we do for TV free fun. PLEASE share your ideas in the comments section of my blog as well as enter the contest!

We actually have a week long of TV free activities (Sat is our only TV night)!!

Monday: Reading Night --- We all gather around and Daddy reads from a book while we do things like handiwork (sewing by hand, beading, etc.).

Tuesday: Family Fun/Date Night --- Sometimes we head out for putt-putt golf, or dress up and head out to a restaurant, or out to the backyard for some fun (you can buy so many backyard outdoor activities like soccer, volleyball, badmitton, balls just for fun!).

Wednesday: Family Devotions/Church --- Sometimes we goto church, sometimes we stay home and have our own family devotions.

Thursday: Arts and Crafts/Hobbies night --- beading, sewing, woodworking, pom-poms, origami, scrapbooking, photography, painting, working with clay, the possibilities are endless (these are just a few of what we do).

Friday: Game Night --- we usually pull out a board/card game and play play PLAY! Sometimes we learn a new card game.

Saturday: Saturday Night Sundaes --- we pull out all the toppings and make our own ice cream and watch a DVD

Sunday: Family Night at church --- we attend service on Sunday evening.

Spring Cleaning Plan

I know that this cleaning plan starts at the beginning of the year, but you can really jump in and start at anytime. And they have it following a link called SPRING CLEANING, so I find it a bit funny that it starts in January. LOL!!

I have printed out a copy and put it in my home management notebook.

I also want to let you know about the CLEAN HEART CLEAN HOME challenge that Amy is doing. Looks VERY interesting. Unfortunately baby is due during the challenge, so I prolly won't be able to complete it. It doesn't start until April 1, so there is still time to get on board before it starts!

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Girls and College

I wrote this in response to a recent comment left on my last entry, and wanted to get other's opinions on it. So I am posting it an an entry.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog! To answer your question, no I do not want my girls to go to college OR do college work. I still need to do a lot of praying on this issue (especially since hubby and I are in disagreement and he wants them to get a college degree from home), but I believe that since I am training up my daughters to be keepers at home (Titus2), that their time can be better spent learning skills to make them a loving and godly wife and mother. And even if the Lord does not have marriage in mind for them, I still believe that their time can be spent better elsewhere (like helping new moms and such). I know this is not a very popular view. I am only just recently learning about this myself (from Susan Bradrick, Crystal Paine and Lady Lydia). Sites like:

I hope that this answers your question.

To add to this I want to say that we will be teaching our girls K-12 grade, making sure they do have a high school education. It is only AFTER they finish school and at the time that it is considered appropriate for someone to goto college, THAT is the time I feel can be better spent learning and improving their skills as a wife, mother and keeper at home.

I have been reading some articles lately that might be of interest to you if you are having the same type of feelings I am. They are under the Training Daughters Works of Heart.

SO, what are YOUR thoughts/feelings on the issue??

Proverbs 31 Weekly Challenge

CHECK OUT THIS GREAT LINK!! I do hope they keep up with it! I think it is a GREAT idea!

The Proverbs 31 Weekly Callenge

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Finishing The Race Strong

When I first thought about homeschooling, I thought that I would homeschool until high school and then put them in high school to finish off. But the more I read and learn about homeschooling (and the more I remember what MY years in high school were like) the more I am realizing that I need to finish the race and finish it strong.

Here is an article that I came across recently. While I am not sure we are going to worry about college for our girls (still talking about that with hubby, I don't want them to do college, he does), we are currently pregnant with a son. Changes EVERYTHING! LOL!!

College At Home

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Sites/Blogs with Heart

***PLEASE NOTE as of November 1, 2008 this page is no longer relevant. Most blogs have either changed where they are blogging OR are no longer around. Instead of updating here, I have been updating on the new blogger blog roll. You can visit the blogs I like to visit simply by clicking on he VIEW ALL on the left hand side bar where you see the blogs I like to read. Thanks, Paula***

This list was getting SO LONG that I decided to keep only those that I read everyday on my main blog, and put the others that I really like to frequent here.

NEW LISTINGS (June 29, 2007):

In Beauty and In Grace
Apron Strings and Needed Things

-=-=-=-=-=-Original List-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Reading the Bible to your children and a side note on finances

Well, now that the kids are over their double bout of illness (first respiratory something, then stomach something), I have been hit hard with both at once. YUCK! I feel absolutely AWFUL.

On a side note (nothing homeschool related, but definitely scary enough to check out), see if you can get and activate a credit card by taping up a torn application. THIS IS SCARY.

On the bright side, I see that my kids are actually learning stuff! Even though I am sick as a dog. My 2yr is looking through word books on her own and pointing out and "reading" words. My 4yr is "reading" by repeating what she remembers the book says. "This says 'please' Momma!" And our 6yr is doing the same, not to mention she actually REMEMBERS what each page says, so she is actually able to "read" the book to her sisters (which is so nice).

They are also doing art projects on their own. Not just coloring, but they are doing those thick foamy things (you know, those door hangers and they have self-adhesive foamy things to put on the foamy door hangers. LOL!! 6yr is actually putting WORDS on hers!

And something I thought would NEVER happen has happened. Our 6yr asked me to read to her from the actual Bible! Now you have to understand, our home used to be filled with picture watered down Bible stories. And every time we would try to read from the actual Bible, we would hear whining about how boring it was.

We have emphasized time and again to her that these are not true to God's word (for example, things were left out or simplified). So today, she asked me to read her the story of Moses because she wanted to know the TRUE story because the books lie and leave out and change stuff. PRAISE GOD! She is learning!

I so wish I wasn't sick. I could only read the first three chapters of Exodus. She sat and listened to it all! Even asking questions!! It was great, and I was so sad I had to stop at chapter 4. But 6yr was content. She just put a bookmark right there to pick up where we left off.

All this hopefully encourages you to NOT give up trying to read the Bible to your children. I know from experience that whenever the oldest child gets excited about something, it doesn't take long for the younger ones to follow behind!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Raomntical is a GREAT word!

After reading HappyApple's latest blog entry, I just HAD to share!! Because this is personal, only registered user can read it.

We too were able to spend a romantic night at the Cliff House for our 9 year wedding anniversary (Aug 2005).

Happy Apple got MUCH better pictures than we did. Our room had the little note saying Congrats as well as the bottle of wine (I was not preggers at the time, so we were able to drink some). We also had the little strawberries all dressed up (too cute!).

So, I had planned this a month in advance. You have to understand that after reading the book Romancing Your Husband (which I created a yahoo group to share ways to romance your husband), I don't just wait for hubby to do romantic things for me. Not to mention it was MY year to plan our anniversary (he planned the honeymoon, I planned our first year wedding anniversary, he planned our second, I planned our third ... well you get the idea). I had already done a trip earlier in the year to Disneyland for their 50th anniversary (hubby's grandfather and great-grandfather both helped build the original park - especially working on the castle and hubby had not ever been to see what and where they had worked). So he was not expecting anything more.

So, since money was tight, I had planned on staying Sunday night, which meant calling and asking his boss for hubby to have half a day (my husband would not have been happy taking the whole day off - long LONG story). He said yes. So I called the hotel and planned everything. I had reserved the cheaper room (which did not have the jacuzzi).

Then I received a notice in my email about a special dinner they were doing. Three course meal for two for a certain price. It was only a few days before our stay so I wasn't sure if we would be able to make reservations. They put us outside (which I wasn't too happy about, but still thankful because everything else was already reserved).

SO, the night arrives and hubby receives a phone call asking if I can help out a friend. So I leave to help, and my mother (who was staying with us) handed my hubby a note with a little poem. I don't remember what the poem said, but it was something about how he had one hour to find a token of his love for me, and then return home.

So, he left and I came home (staying at a neighbor's house) and got dressed for the evening. Then friends drove me to the hotel. When hubby came home he received a note saying that he had thirty minutes to get dressed for a romantic evening out. Then mom gave him another note with clues about where to go (because he was running late, mom just told him where to go).

When I got to the hotel, they took the bags up to the room and gave me the keys to the room. I waited at our table. Oh I am so glad we ended up outside. The weather was PERFECT! And I was able to see when hubby drove up.

He came up the stairs to me sitting there with the BIGGEST grin on my face. We were severved dinner. First course was a DELICIOUS salad. Second was rice with grilled veggies (I know that sounds simple, but it was the BEST we have ever had!), and third was dessert (three different creme brule's served on a plate with the words "Happy Anniversary" spelled out in chocolate).

So after dessert was served, and while we were feeding each other small bites of the yummy dessert, I asked him if he could do anything he wanted, without worry about work the next day, what would he wanted to do.

My husband said he would go in and get us a room here for the night.

So I asked him what he would think if I had already gotten us a room and called his boos to get him a half day on Monday. He didn't believe me. Even after I brought out our keys to the room, he didn't believe me.

So finally, up we went to the room. THEY HAD UPGRADED US!! That is one of the BEST things about going in on a night when they are not very busy. We had a room with a jacuzzi and a fireplace. OH IT WAS SO ROMANTIC!

I won't go into the details of the night here, only to say that it was wonderfully romantic and a night neither of us will soon forget.

In the morning, they have a breakfast buffet (included in the price of the room). So we had a nice romantic breakfast to finish off such a wonderfully romantic evening.

Thanks HappyApple for the opportunity to relive this magical night! Hubby said he was goign to have a difficult time trying to top this for our 10 year wedding anniversary (Aug 2006).

OH, and if you want to, you can see pictures of the card I made him and the layout I framed for our anniversary (my gift to him).

Links to Check Out

Links you may have missed but are pretty neat to check out!

A Bit On Home Keeping. This is a VERY motivational piece and I highly encourage you to read it.

Making of a Homemaker by the Smithsonian Institution Libraries on Display.

Spring Cleaning from the site Christian Homemaking.

American Housebook 6 Week Charm Course

Practical Homemaking

Household Notebook

Monday, March 13, 2006

Are Daddies Smarter Than Mommies?

This morning my 6YR dd comes over to me and asks me to make her a paper shoe. I told her I didn't know how to make one and she said "Daddy is smarter than you, I bet he knows how to make one."

Now you have to understand, this was not said with any malice at all. It was truly sincere and spoken so softly and surely.

So my question is this, how do children get the idea that Daddy is smarter than Mommy?

I have never said "go ask your Father." At least not that I can remember. We always try to search it out on the internet. The only time I refer to asking Daddy about anything is when it comes to decisions (like where we are going or if we can buy something).

Is it because I continually refer to Daddy as wonderful, handsome, and great? Is it because I defer matters to him (like whether or not to buy something or to go somewhere)? Is it because I show him reverence and honor? Is it because he is the spiritual leader of our house?

Honestly, I am not upset at all by her comments or thoughts. I was in fact tickled. I think it might even be preparing her to recognize that God is all knowing and to goto Him for the answers she seeks. I hope that is what this is.

Cleaning and Music Lessons

First, I must mention that OreoSouza has added part 2-4 updating her ARE WE SAFE series (I posted a direct link below in Very Important Read). Now back to our regularly scheduled program. LOL!

So I am reading the book Home Grown Kids and in the section for 5-6YR (my oldest just turned 6) it talks about making music.

My children have always been around music. I sang to them in the womb. I sing to them throughout the day. Often, when we are on vacation and I need them to goto sleep in the hotel room I will sing hymns to them. I also play a variety of music for them (classical, hymns, children's worship, Scripture, etc.).

My 4YR and 6YR frequently make up their own songs about anything and everything. I think they got that from their Daddy. He would make up the silliest songs about how much he loved them and about what he was doing (like bath time or getting dressed).

So the book talks about playing a "rhythm" game. Clap, clap, rest. Clap, clap, rest. Can you do what Momma just did?

So while we were cleaning yesterday, I thought I would try it with my oldest (as the other two were running around and not really cleaning). I was in the kitchen cleaning and she was in the living room cleaning.

Me: Hey 6YR. Wanna play a game while we are cleaning?
6YR: (excitedly) YES!
Me: I am going to do something musically and you are going to try to repeat it. So if I go (with mouth) DO-BE-DO (pause/rest) DO-BE-DO (pause/rest) You would do ???
6YR: DO-BE-DO DO-BE-DO (no pause/rest)
Me: Very close. Listen again. DO-BE-DO (pause/rest) DO-BE-DO (pause/rest)
6YR: DO-BE-DO (pause/rest) DO-BE-DO (pause/rest)
Me: EXCELLENT! Do you wanna try another one?

This went on and on for quite some time! I tried to "tease" her that I was going to "get" her and think of a rhythm she could not get. But she got all of them. Sometimes there was a slight variance in her reply and I would encourage her to listen closely and try again. She always got it the second time. It was too much fun! And the cleaning was done before we knew it!

Oh, I forgot to mention that the 4YR heard so much giggling that she came over and tried to play too. Nope - you HAVE to be cleaning to be able to play. So off she went to get some toys to help clean the living room! And she did really well with the game too. Of course she either repeated after sister repeated (if it was a difficult one) OR she got to go first for an easier one.

On a side note, I have also started doing this with simple addition for the 6YR. I also come up with critical thinking questions like "What is big, and brown with green and grows?" They answer "a tree." Does anyone know where I can get some FREE critical thinking questions that are good for 2YR, 4YR and 6YR?? As you can see from the above example, mine are NOT the best. LOL!!

Children and Chores

Children and Chores - As you can prolly tell, this is a favorite subject of mine. I was never taught (or made to) clean my room or other areas of the house. As a result, I formed a habit of NOT cleaning.

I became a Christian in college (my husband is the one who led me to the Lord) and after becoming a wife, I learned that keeping a house was part of being a godly woman.

Much to my horror, I realized that the habit of not cleaning was really a habit of LAZINESS (let's call it what it really is). I had become lazy. It wasn't just that I didn't know HOW to clean, I just didn't WANT to clean. And the perfectionist in me which said it had to be done right or not at all was also rearing it's ugly head, preventing me from cleaning my house.

So I have a LONG way to go in becoming the keeper at home that I should be. And I want to make sure I am being a good Titus 2 mother and training my girls (I have three - ages 6yr, 4yr and 2 1/2yr) to be keepers at home.

I am sure we have all ready that as soon as a child is able to get a toy out, he is able to be taught to put it back. And as soon as the child can walk, have them walking around WITH you, participating in ALL that you do.

Well, I did PART of that (and am now realizing how much of the WHOLE of that I should have been doing).

I notice that the chores I had my 6yr doing when she was first able to walk, she does joyfully and cheerfully now. It is the other things that I thought I should wait on letting her help with that she has already developed a habit of discontent with (like sweeping and mopping the floor).

With my 4yr I slacked off so much on having her help or do ANYTHING around the house (mostly because I was so busy training and working with her older sister) that this child is the most difficult to get to do ANY keeping house cheerfully.

With my 2 1/2 yr, I started REALLY early. I am doing things MUCH differently. She participates in EVERYTHING Momma does (even the training of her other sisters). Now, when she hears me open the dishwasher and comes JOYFULLY RUNNING to help unload it. I really think having the dishes in the pantry at a level she can work with REALLY helps. She also LOVES to help set the table.

This morning, with the laundry, she had her pile of clothes. Usually I have the 6yr fold the 2yr clothes as well as her own. But today the 2YR took the shirt off the top of the pile, brought it to me and asked me to fold it. After I folded it she ran it into her room to put in her dresser drawer. She came back into my room, asked me to fold the next shirt in her pile, and off to her room to put it in her drawer. Somewhere in the middle of the pile she started "folding" her own clothes and putting them in her drawer until all her clothes were "folded" and put in her drawer. SHE WAS SO HAPPY! And I know that I am forming a habit in her. A GOOD habit.

My husband was forced to do a lot of housework when he was younger. He grew to hate Saturdays because that was cleaning day. Mom and Dad would leave and have some alone time and the children were left to clean the house by themselves. When Mom got home, she would criticise everything they had done. They learned to do poor jobs just because they wanted to give her something to complain about instead of nitpicking all the hard work they had done.

I have seen how this affected my husband. And there are two rules in our house:
First - Nobody works alone. When I clean, my children are cleaning too. And when they start cleaning, Momma starts cleaning. Whether it is a 15 minute tidy up, or vacuuming and dusting, we do it TOGETHER.

Second - Saturdays are for FAMILY! I have worked hard to create a schedule that allows us to clean (and keep the house clean) throughout the week, so when the weekend comes (our only time with Daddy), we are able to spend it doing fun things TOGETHER.

Notice how both rules end with the word together. I did not notice that myself until now, but it is true. Not only does the work get done faster, but it is more joyful when you do it together and feel a needed part of the family.

I also make it a point to NEVER redo my children's work. Sometimes I will encourage them to do a little more cleaning (what a great job! can you find any spot's you missed when you were cleaning/sweeping?). They get big smiles on their face and usually find their "mistake" shortly and clean it up. And I don't refold their clothes for them (thankfully they wear mostly dresses which are hanging in the closet so there is not too much wrinkling going on with the way the younger one's fold their clothes.

Today, as we were putting away laundry, my 6yr proudly came in and told me she had a surprise for me. She showed me her drawer (where her clothes were almost perfectly folded). She had put all her shirts in one area of her drawer, all her panties/stockings/bloomers in another area. Her whole drawer was ORGANIZED! I NEVER taught her to do this, and had not asked her to. Just one of the benefits of getting her started early.

And thank God for front loading washers and dryers. Being so pregnant, I cannot bend over to load/unload them. But all there of my children gleefully come running to help load or unload or take the clothes from the washer and put them in the dryer. And a special treat for the best helper? They get to take the lint out of the lint trap!

Chores is not a "dirty" word in our house. It means times of fellowship and fun!

My children can usually be heard making up their own songs and singing while they work (even recently my 6yr has started doing this while SWEEPING!). Some other things we do to make it fun can be read in the following post.

Anyways, I pray that this really encourages you to have your youngsters help out around the house and get them started early. I am truly amazed at the difference in my own children (how already the 4yr has developed a habit of laziness and a discontentment towards cleaning and keeping house). I am just thankful that she is only 4 and there is still time to train her properly (before she gets to be 8 or 10 or 12 and refuses to clean because the habit has had longer to form and is more difficult to break).

There is a GREAT post by a friend that you really should check out on this subject.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Going Ons

First, thanks to everyone who prayed and emailed about how things are going. Thankfully, it was NOT grandmother's heart, but the medication she was on that was giving her heart problems (don't get me started on the health/medical industry and prescription meds). And secondly, the pain in my FILs chest is gone, and the doctors are not worried about it so neither are we.

I also realized that it takes me longer than three weeks to read a book. I recently checked out Home School Burnout and tried to read it all before I had to return it (the Moore books are extremely popular here and cannot be renewed because someone else is always wanting to read it next). GREAT book that I think every mom should read BEFORE she starts homeschooling (so as not to get to the point of burnout). I got through all the chapters written by the Moores, but not the real life examples written by moms. Oh well, the nice thing about having more than one library card in the family is that I can (why didn't I think of this before) put it on hold with several cards in sucession and keep the book even longer.

And I just have to put in a plug here for teaching baby sign language. It is one of the best things I have ever done. We recently have been renting DVD's from the library and they are GREAT! TOS used to have a promotion code to order them (not sure if they still do or if it still works). We are saving up to buy the DVD's. But for now, the library is working wonderfully! My girls are learning so many more signs so quickly from the DVD's. They would always ask me what a sign was, and I would have the most difficult time finding it online (why is PEAR so difficult to find?). But we plugged in Signing Time: My Favorite Things and there was the sign for pear! And all the other fruits my girls love. The spent almost an hour last night telling Daddy all the new signs they learned. Even the 2 1/2 year old AMAZED me at how much she picked up!

Well, I could go on and on about teaching babies and children sign language (how we never had any screaming in our house from a child not being understood because they were able to sign and communicate with us before they could actually talk, how my oldest was able to tell me what the baby wanted when my back was turned, etc.) but I will go for now. It is the weekend and FAMILY TIME!


When I first became a Christian, I remember reading lots of books on marriage. I wanted to have a really great marriage. I remember reading a lot of stuff that I should do. And I remember reading a lot of stuff that my husband should do. He should "love me as Christ loved the Church." And be "sensitive to my needs." And he was to be a strong, spiritual leader. He should do the manly things around the house.

All this caused me to become so discontent with my husband!

A very wise and godly woman once shared a book with a friend of mine and said "there are parts in this book which talk about what a husband is supposed to do - they are clearly labeled for the husband. Do not read those chapters."

And I took the advice as my own too. I have now stopped reading books or chapters in books that talk specifically about what the husband is supposed to do. I read what I am supposed to do. And I change myself.

And you know what?? Not only did I stop being discontent with my husband, but I became joyful and blessed to be his wife!

I realized that I was NOT created to be the Holy Spirit in my husband's life. And the less I criticized him and longed for him to be those things I read he should be and started be thankful for who he is the better our marriage became. I realized that I expected so much of my husband, and yet was so unwilling to expect the same of myself (all those changes the Bible said I was supposed to do and didn't).

I also realized that there are no "manly" jobs. I mean, how many women would love for their man to help out with the housework or cook them a meal (those things are considered feminine)?? And why should I sit around and pout all day because my husband did not take out the trash (a job considered a manly thing to do)? It only causes resentment and bitterness!! So now I take out the trash (and it so blesses my husband AND our marriage) with a joyful heart.

I am so thankful for this wise woman's advice to my friend. My marriage and my LIFE is better because of it!!

I hope that this encourages you.


I am suprized by how my blog which is supposed to be detailing MY journey is becomming more and more about how I am training my daughters! LOL!!

Firstly, I updated the DAUGHTERS link on the right hand column with more GREAT pages for the Daughters Of Virtue Notebook.

But what about NOW, while they are little?

Dressing Little Girls
is a WONDERFUL article about dressing our little girls in modest apparel.

And Through The Week In Feminine Dress is an encouraging peek at how we adult women can go about their daily home making tasks and do it in a dress!

Saturday, March 4, 2006

Death Comes Unexpectedly

It is one of the quotes from the pastor in the Disney version of Pollyanna. I must admit always laughing at the hellfire and brimstone sermon (with the chandelier shaking). But never has those words hit me like they did at the news of Missey's death. You can read more about it from the above link.

I am sure that her death has affected us all in different ways. I thought I would share how her death has affected me. If you do the same, please share a link in the comments to how her death has affected you.

First, when I visit her blog (I had always enjoyed reading her blog since I first joined HSB) after hearing about her death, everything seems so normal. She says she will get back to us with more details later. It really hits just how quickly and unexpectedly death can come.

I look around my house at all that needs to be done. I am NOT a good keeper at home (I am currently in the process of learning and you can read about that journey on my homesteading blog). I wonder if I were to die today, what would people think when they came into my home? Would my husband be embarassed to ask for help from others because of the horrible state of our house? Toys and clothes here and there. The kitchen counter is covered with no room for people to bring meals over.

Last night my daughter had a fever of 103.6. I must admit I am not usually one to worry, but I was so scared of losing her last night. She had a horrible cough and I could hear her breathing was very raspy. There are few times in my life I have prayed as hard as I did last night.

Should I die tomorrow, I want my children to remember that their Momma was a HAPPY woman and not someone who yelled all the time. I want them to remember that their Momma LOVED and ADORED them and was so happy to be their mom and not someone who was just going through the motions of being a mom. I want them to know I ENJOYED them and spending time with them and not how much time I spent on things outside the family (like computer time, church activities, friends, etc.). I admit I miss them when I am away from them for even a quick trip to the grocery store alone.

I want my husband to feel blessed by the short time we had together and not realize that life is better without me (by no more nagging and such). When I shared about Missy's death he told me the only thing he feared more than losing this baby (or the kids) is losing me.

I am so overwhelmed with emotion right now and have been crying off and on for a few days now (since hearing of Missey's death). Maybe I am over reacting because of pregnancy hormones. OR maybe this is just the wake up call God needed to send me to cause me to change for His glory.

I want to cherish every moment I have with my family. I was reading recently on one of my friend's blogs about making memories with our children (please forgive me for not remembering who you are - I think it was Kay). I want my children to have great memories of me - of our time together. And that means SPENDING TIME together.

I want to ask my kids each day what they want to do and then try to do it. Not be worried about the mess, but focoused on the memory we are making. One of the reasons I got into scrapbooking (you can see my online scrapbook following the PICTURES link on the right hand column) was to leave a legacy for my children. I want them to be able to look at a picture and know who, when, where and what.

And even though I hate pictures of me being taken, I know that should I die, my children will want pictures of me. Pictures of me alone, of me with their Daddy, of me loving them and enjoying them. I need to allow more pictures of myself to be taken.

And I worry about training them up to be servants for the Lord - to be good and godly wives and mothers. I pray that for them and with them, but I am such a horrible example. I have just now started changing MY example.

I want them to remember and know me as a woman who loved the Lord and was filled with His peace and joy. Not as I am now. And I know that means I need to continue to change. More of Him and less of me.


I ask myself, what am I doing for the Lord? I'm not the only momma who struggles with, "I want to do more." We women are good at guilt inflicted self condemnation. Yet we also have a real understanding of time and place and the yearning to make our lives count. We want to impact the world for the kingdom, and yet some days we feel too tired, and too selfish to even really love our own. How many mothers contemplate leadership roles they don't have time for, adoption, mentoring, more ministry, serving.... a string of activities and service projects to help them feel they contribute. It would be nice to check off all our good deeds in the book of good deeds. We might feel accomplished, except there is no book of good deeds.

That is an excerpt from Lilacs newest writing. I HIGHLY encourage you to read her stuff. VERY God honoring and convicting.

And while her whole POST is thought provoking and convicting, this paragraph especially got me thinking. "There is no book of good deeds." The only book I know of that the Bible talks about when it talks about books of something is the Book of Life (in which we all want our names). Not deeds, but LIFE.

So what is my life? Am I living a life that is pleasing to the Lord? Am I serving HIM or myself?

I am sorry to cut this short. Family emergency. Seems nothing compared to all that has been going on lately with Missey and Emily and other prayer requests on here.

UPDATE: Please pray for my husband's grandmother and my husband's father. Both are very ill (heart problems). It would break my husband's heart if he lost one much less BOTH of them at once. And please pray for me. I am very sleep depraved after last night. Thank you.

ALSO, please visit Dandelion Seeds blog for updates on prayer requests for Candace (sp?).

Wednesday, March 1, 2006

Catching Up

WOW things have been busy over here!

I have been pretty busy decluttering the home and trying to keep up with keeping a home. I never learned how to be a keeper at home when I was younger. I am so thankful for the Making It Home group (and hope I will be ordering the magazine soon). I have a blog where I am journaling my journey. The link is on a separate blog entry (you have to be a member to view it - I want to keep it semi-private). It has been fun and very rewarding, but DEFINITELY kept me busy.

I also have been reading Home School Burnout. While this book seems like it is for those who have been homeschooling a while and are burning out (and it DOES address those issues), it is also PERFECT for the beginning homeschooler (like ME). I am really liking what the Moores are saying (thanks Jannie for the encouragement to read more and also to join that yahoo group!).

A quote from the book: "Children are not little buckets to fill up, but little trees to grow." I LOVE THAT!!

I did not get to put up a Week In Review for last week. And I have not been keeping up with this week either. I really miss journaling what they are doing/learning. It really helps me to know that they are indeed growing and learning. But the children have really been expanding their imaginations! They come up with the greatest games! I will have to share (but another time).

And I am excited about getting to meet other homeschooling moms/kids. I know that my oldest is REALLY wanting to goto school. She sees the kids on the bus and wants to be a part of that. When I was invited to a play day with a local homeschooling group (thank you Nancy!) my oldest became so excited. She wanted to invite other friends (who are in public school) and I told her that they couldn't come because they were in public school, but that we could go because we were in homeschool. Then I told her that the other kids she was going to meet were also homeschooled. She got SO EXCITED! She is going to meet other homeschoolers. I did not realize how important that was to her until today.

Business and Time Robbers

WOW! I had no idea that actually keeping up on the tasks that I want to accomplish each day can take so much time. Mrs. Bradock in her 24 Hours CD talks about how the things we THINK are important can really rob our time, and I am now realizing just how much time I was robbed of!

For example, my day today consisted of doing adult laundry (anywhere from 2-4 loads depending on how many delicate wash items I have). Then of course the keeping up on dishes (making sure they are rinsed and put in the dishwasher, not just piling up in the sink). And today I also have to mop the kitchen/dining room/entry way floor (they all connect). Then of course I have my 15 minutes decluttering (from the decluttering challenge from the Making It Home group - see the Love and God's Blessing link). Then I am still training the children, playing with them, reading to them and other homeschooling things that I am trying to do.

I have also been spending more time with my husband in the evenings (something which is about to end because work is picking up again). I am thankful that he works from home, but not so thankful for the long hours he (and his co-workers) are having to put in. The deadline is April 15, so my husband will be working late nights again for quite sometime. We are just trying to enjoy our evenings that we have right now before work picks up again. But time with hubby (while great), means again less time on the time robbers.

I am amazed at how much I am fighting this. I mean it feels SO GOOD to have time with hubby in the evenings, to have my children cuddle up with me while I read them a book, to finally be keeping a home! But my inner self is fighting it (I miss scrapbooking, and want to get to my sewing, and want to finish reading my current book, and want to finish my home management notebook, and I want time to read through my list of blogs and to work on my blog, and ...).

But I have noticed that now that I am spending LESS time on the time robbers and MORE time on those things which I am called to that glorify God more than the time robbers, that a lot of things are happening.

First, my children are happy. They are being so much nicer to each other and loving to each other!!

I also notice my girls are more apt to clean up after themselves WITHOUT a reminder from Mommy! THIS IS SO GREAT!

The house is becoming a home. Slowly but surely! I know we have all heard that our house doesn't get this way overnight and it won't be fixed overnight. But with a little bit clean here and there, I can see my home becoming a sanctuary! And I notice that I am happier too! I do need to remember to NOT become all tense and uptight about keeping the house clean. I want my girls to remember to do all things housekeeping wise with a HAPPY and JOYFUL heart. And that comes by example.

My children are becoming so creative! Or maybe they have always been creative but I was so busy with time robbers that I never noticed. That really hurts my heart to admit.

Well, hopefully this will encourage someone.

And now for something completely different, and article which might encourage you:
Busy as A Backward Bee Proverbs 31:27 from Laine. I love getting her email (when she sends them out) as they are always so encouraging.