Friday, February 27, 2009

Helping Your Child Find His Place in the World

Lately this has been on my mind alot, especially as the world we live in becomes busier and more complicated, offering endless opportunities, more than we can possibly pursue. It becomes necessary to prioritize and to limit both our commitments and our children's involvements.

Parents today struggle with peer pressure to have their kids involved in everything. Or at least something.

As a parent, I believe one of our foundational tasks is to help our children to discover their unique place in the world. "I see this quality in you. It's valuable for _____ and God may want to use you to ______". We must be a student of our child.

Rather than a list of do's and don'ts, to illustrate I will just share an example from our own family. We have one child who plays the piano, an interest requiring an enormous investment of time. When this skill is fully developed, it will be useful for ministry and for providing an income. But at this point, after many years, it still costs money and restricts her from being able to work. So we help her.

On the other hand, I know people who have skill in playing piano simply because they were forced to practice as a child. If they don't enjoy it, they usually don't use the skill to serve. Could it be that child would have been better served by being allowed to choose dance class, volleyball, or a job?

It's good to expose your child to a variety of opportunities. It's also good not to stack them on top of each other. Do you need to let go of some expectations for your child? Or is there something God is showing you that you need to allow your child to try?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

What Weighs You Down?

"I suppose we are all ready to admit that
it is not the things we do, but the things we fail to do, which fatigue us,
with the sense of omission, with the worry of hurry in overtaking our
tasks" (Vol. 1, p. 146). Charlotte Mason, Vol. 1, p. 146, via Simply Charlotte Mason.

Stress. It's killing us. And I have said for a long time it's caused more by what we don't get done, but feel we ought, than by productive busy-ness.

Well, the Simply Charlotte Mason folks are declaring July 19th the day for a Planning Getaway. Details on the Loganville, Georgia, event here. Or set your own date and plan your own getaway.

I'm kinda sad to be done with home schooling. More on that later.


Monday, April 23, 2007

Are You Serving Your Kids?

Admittedly this is kind of a trick question. Because the rest of the question that's been bouncing around in my mind for a few weeks now is this: or are you training your kids to serve God? More properly stated:
Am I serving my kids or am I training them to serve God?

The differences can be subtle:
  • How's my attitude about them having to invite a friend to Awana? Do I try to get them out of the requirement or do I help them see bringing friends to the Savior as a lifestyle?
  • What about their friends? Am I content with them having a group of nice Christian friends or do I stretch them to look out for the lonely?
How are you training your kids to use their talents to serve?

Thursday, March 22, 2007

How Stonehenge Was Built?

Do you ever wonder why I post somewhat educational guy videos here? It beats storing them forever in email.

See this amazing youtube where a Michigan guy figures out (and demonstrates) how tons and tons and tons of rocks and blocks can be lifted without fossil fuels.

My hero works in the field of architecture. This is fascinating stuff.


Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Ultimate Blog Party and Food, too!

I've been having so much fun with the party at my everyday blog, I wanted to keep it going over here.

What you need to know about this one is that I keep no publishing schedule. Basically this information is for me, my friends, and anyone else who is interested. So if that includes you, and if you don't want to be bothered checking back all the time, email subscription is available in the sidebar.

Now, what's for dinner?

Easiest Ever Chicken Adobo (adapted from Sunset magazine)

6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs or 3 large breasts
6 cloves of garlic, pressed
2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 14 oz can coconut milk
1 tsp whole black peppercorns
1 bay leaf

1. put everything in the crockpot.
2. if you had the forethought to thaw the chicken, cook for half a day.
3. if not, cook all day.
4. or cook on high.

Serve with rice. Or whatever.

This is not hot unless you happen to bite down on a peppercorn and chew it up without anything else in your mouth.

Thanks for dropping by!

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

Two Guest Posts, One Common Theme

Train up a child in the way he should go,
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6 NASB

  • A barely related plan for Raising Bargain Princesses at The Bargain Queen. This strategy is IMO the way to raise modest daughters, as well. One thing I would add, probably under the category "around age 9": When she expresses interest in magazines, buy her books instead.

Also new at The Space Between My Peers: a category for Teens! Every Tuesday I plan to post something on Teen Style. What would you like to see?

Friday, February 16, 2007

Scheduling vs Routine

In response to requests for her schedule, Amy Scott has posted her order/routine, a must-read for those homeschooling (or considering it) with preschoolers. Incidentally, it has always been my opinion, and I've seen both sides, that homeschooling fits better with the routine of little ones than does having your older kids attending a formal school.

Some valuable excerpts from the attending comments:

Cindy says ~
Just make sure you are consistent with training and inspiring each child and they will be such a help to you when #4 and #5 come along! Cutting the clutter –in your home and in your scheduling does help quite a bit too–simplify, simplify!

Another Heather says ~
I have five at home from almost 8 to almost one and I am expecting again. The baby never did sleep well during the day (no morning naps) and now he is almost walking. In the meantime, 2yo big brother likes to sit on him or stuff his face in the carpet!! I try to just take school as it comes. Some days it doesn’t! I figure right now, keep the baby’s face out of the carpet, get the meals on, keep the clothes clean, keep the house as clean as possible (believe me, it is not like I like it) and do as much school work as we can. Oh, I try to clean the kids occassionally, too! I generally turn them loose on homework and monitor from the kitchen. Then I check it when I can.

My husband, bless his heart is my reality check. He comes homes and tells me not to compare myself to others, do my best (which he thinks is great) and ease up on my expectations.

And from Mx5, another "older" mom:

My 5 kids range in age now from 7 to 17. When they were small, we got into the routine of “doing school” whenever the baby (whomever that happened to be) took his/her afternoon nap ... . Since my dh was a youth pastor and gone most evenings, we felt strongly that in order for the kids to have face-time with him they needed to be able to stay up later, and get up later ...

We’ve afternoon schooled for all 12yrs. of our homeschooling experience and it really works for us, even now. Our kids are joyful, intelligent, and love Jesus. It works for us.

Last August I posted my own schedule, although clearly I am in a different season of life from these moms. But I love the questions at the end. Enough to repeat them here:

  • Where does your husband fit in? Are you giving your primary relationship your leftovers?
  • Is there margin in your life? That is why I use one and a half hour increments. I try to schedule only one hour’s worth of work in each.
  • Are you getting enough conversation? How about your kids?

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