Isn’t it funny how God often teaches us things through ways that we don’t expect? Yesterday, I posted about how we all can fall into the trap of worrying about things in our lives (See HERE). Scripture tells us that worry doesn’t accomplish anything. It doesn’t add to our days or fix our problems. There are several intentional things we can do to keep ourselves from those thoughts that can seep in, and I wanted to check back today to see if any of you had any feedback. But I am checking in with my own feedback. You see, yesterday afternoon, my blog site went down. There was no way to access the admin site or the hosting site. I am the first to admit that I have absolutely NO technological ability, either. My super-techie son is the one who helped me design and set up this site, and he maintains it, too. But he is out of town and has limited contact right now. When I was notified that people couldn’t access my site, I didn’t know what to do. I have several friends who have had their sites hacked and have lost all of their content. I was
It is late. You finally get the last child to bed. Well, he was put to bed over an hour ago, but this time, hopefully, it sticks. Throw that last load of laundry in the dryer, start the dishwasher so you’ll have clean bowls tomorrow morning, shower, brush teeth, phone on the charger… …and finally… your head hits the pillow. SLEEP. SLEEP. Go. To. Sleeeeeep. Do it. now. Well, first, what am I going to do tomorrow with my son and his lack of desire to do school? I just don’t think I can deal with another fight. And then there’s the little one who is almost three and not potty trained yet. I’ve been putting that off, but I know it is me and my lack of discipline, not him. And I have to start dealing with the things going on in our support group. Should I send an email? Should I just be quiet? And how are we going to deal with our budget this month? We need to have the car repaired, but we DO need to eat. Should I be looking for a home business or part time job? What if I wait too long
Most of us are pretty diligent to read books to our children when they are toddlers. It promotes great lap and cuddle time, they love to look at the pictures and turn the pages (5 at a time) as we read, and many of those stories are so sweet! Read-alouds are great for calming them down at bedtime, too. We continue to do this as they enter elementary school because we are told it is beneficial to them. Yes, our early readers need to be regularly reading out loud to US at this age to help build their skills, too. And, quite frankly, it builds Mom’s skill of patience as the child labors to sound out words as I wait with bated breath during those hauntingly long pauses. “The….b..boy…and…h..h..his…d…d..d… No. Don’t fill in the word for him…. must…hold…out. Sorry. I digress. Reading out loud to our children provides more benefits than you know. You get to extend that sweet time of cuddling on the couch as you enjoy fascinating adventures and mysteries together. You are able to discuss things that happened in the story and guess together what you think will happen next. It builds comprehension skills, and thinking skills,
When was the last time you cleaned the cobwebs out of the upper corners of your rooms? How about dusting the ceiling fans or cleaning the top of your refrigerator? I know. Those chores are not as critical as cleaning the toilets or making sure the spilled honey on the floor of the kitchen is mopped. But as I go about my day, I often wonder if those areas will EVER get cleaned. Add to that, if you are training the children to do some of these chores, you know they are likely not going to clean the way YOU would clean. The corners of the floor may not get swept or there will be streaks left on the bathroom mirror. You don’t want to always come behind them to “do it right” or they will never feel like they are meeting your expectations. When my kids were younger and learning to do these chores, I remember biting my tongue when guests would use our bathroom. The kids cleaned in there this week, not me. Oh, and they were the ones who messed it up in the first place. It was a struggle to balance the feelings of realizing that
You know when you used to talk with your grandparents they would begin a story with, “Well, when I was your age…”? Well, I am not a grandma (yet), and I am definitely not YOUR grandma, but I do feel grandparently or parently toward you as a homeschooler. [Yes, I know those two words are not words – don’t correct your older when she is talking.] When I was your age, the world of homeschooling was bright and new. It had recently become legal in all 50 states, thanks to so many courageous families that had gone before me. I had four little ones, six years apart, and just figuring out how to break out of the mold of making my homeschool look like the public school I knew while I was growing up. We had little desks, a long alphabet poster along the wall, and even a white board. There was little curricula available to homeschoolers, so I used the library as one of my major resources for our education. We were there at least twice a month, gathering a large basket of books. When we got home, the kids disappeared, taking an armful of books and poring over them
For years we have all been encouraged to operate with less paperwork and more electronic storage. But it seems that a completely paperless society is still far on the horizon. I don’t know about you but I continually need lots of storage for paperwork. Add children and education to that and you have colored papers, lined paper, worksheets, and a myriad of other hard copy material you still need to store. Hanging file folders in a file cabinet work well, but file cabinets take up space, and you can only have so many of them. Years ago, I began using magazine files to store many of my papers. Magazine files are designed for storing magazines, and they are oriented in a portrait layout instead of the landscape layout of traditional file cabinets. So how do I use these portable containers for organized storage? Enter the backpack folder. It is designed with the dividing tabs on one end of the folder and a side opening for easy filling. They fit perfectly inside magazine files, allowing you to have an organized method of storing your important papers. Never seen them before? Actually, backpack folders are easier to find than you may think.
This past weekend, I had the privilege to speak to families on the subject of the power of our words for our children. In that workshop I focused on just a FEW of the verses in the Bible that address the power of the tongue and the importance of our speech. Now, if we were to do an exhaustive study on what God says about our words, we would have had to camp at that conference center for days! Prov. 18:21 says, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” Those are some drastic extremes. For us, that means that we need to seriously consider how we use our words to engage and encourage our children. An unguarded rant made out of frustration can do lots of damage to little ears. And once it is spoken, you can’t unsay it, right? Well, one of the points I discussed has to do with what Paul writes in Colossians 4:6. He says, “Let your speech be always gracious, seasoned with salt, that you can know how you should answer everyone.” We are instructed here to make our words salty. Why does Paul use this metaphor? Well, salt is an enhancer.
I am always excited when I see things that help students who learn differently. Having raised children with diagnosed ADHD and dysgraphia and watching them struggle to navigate through educational hurdles, this piece of news makes me smile. Christian Boer, a graphic designer in the Netherlands, has developed a special font that aids dyslexic individuals in their reading. It is called “Dyslexie,” and it is designed to enable dyslexics like Boer more easily identify letters. You see, those with dyslexia often get similar letters confused. Dyslexia is a processing issue, not a problem with intelligence. Please don’t confuse processing issues with how smart someone is! Letters that are mirrored, such as “b” and “d” are often interchanged in the brain when a person with dyslexia is reading. Letters that can be flipped, like “p” and “d” are also an issue. What Boer did was carefully design each letter so that it is unique from the others. He made all the letters slightly thicker at their bases so they appear heavier and weighted down. He also slightly angled others so that they look more distinct. The capital letters in this font are in bold, as well as all punctuation. All of
This week I was reading in the book of Romans and came across this verse: Romans 11:17 – “But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree” (ESV). Of course, this verse is super-packed with great information and encouragement for us. The major thing going on here is that some wild olive shoots are grafted into an existing tree. They then are able to get their food and water from the roots of that existing plant. Let’s first discuss what grafting is. Once we look at this process, then we will have a much fuller understanding of what the verse means for us. Grafting is a technique where a section of a stem with some leaf buds is attached to the stock of an existing tree. It is placed onto the stock plant so that the vascular cambium tissue of both pieces lines up. That way the grafted portion is able to receive nutrients from the stock. Vascular cambium is the material that produces the xylem and phloem of plants. Xylem and phloem transport fluid and nutrients
If you have been on the internet in the last 48 hours, you have already seen and debated over whether “the dress” is white and gold, or blue and black. If you haven’t seen it yet, look HERE. No matter the color you saw, you were absolutely positive that you were seeing it correctly and others were absolutely wrong! How can this be? You know what you were seeing. And if you look over the hundreds of comments, you will find that there were even a few who sometimes saw white and gold and other times saw blue and black, depending on how they were observing it. Why? Well, having been a homeschooler for two decades, I have to take this interesting phenomenon and turn it into a short science lesson. Let’s do a few things to explore what our body does to perceive color. Things are not actually “made” of color. Rather, as Isaac Newton noted, the surface of objects reflects some colors and absorbs others. So a red rose really does not have red within it. Its surface reflects the wavelengths of light we see as red and absorbs all of the other wavelengths. When light is bent