Parenting Q&A

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Last Friday, I helped organize an event hosting a Q&A panel of parent experts. This followed a small group study on the series Hearts on Fire by Diane Comer. This series focuses on rearing children in the early years in preparation for the more challenging teen years on into adulthood.

Here are the notes I took during the evening. **All questions and answers are paraphrased. **Suitable for moms with young children.

Q: When my child/(ren) are down for a nap, is it ok for me to veg out or should I be devoting that time to reading my bible?

A: -It’s ok to veg out, but it’s also important to remember to allow space for your mind and heart to be and stay awakened to God.

-You don’t have to wait until the children are asleep, it is possible to create a quiet time with your children around. Train and teach them to have a quiet time with a book or a quiet activity. Have a bin full of quiet activities handy for the children to engage with, used only during quiet time.

-One thing you can do during your quiet time is listen to worship music and sketch or draw the words you hear or images that come to mind.

-The bible app has an audible option. Listen to the word while washing dishes, folding laundry, or knitting.

-Guard yourself of time robbers like smartphones, FB, and Instagram.

~One purpose of the awakening is to store up treasures you glean while engaging in the word and during worship. You will need these treasure when your children are older.

~Reading the scripture is important, but the bible repeats often to meditate on the word. Post scripture around your house and pray for wisdom.

Q: Is it ok to have children read their bible diligently or will this deter them from wanting to read the word when they are older?

A: Think of this like brushing your teeth. Did you stop brushing your teeth when you became a teenager or adult. No, of course not. If anything, we brushed them more often. This is the same for teaching your child to have a quiet time or to read the word.

~Be approving. Children seek our approval.

Q: Is it ok to correct a child with scripture.

A: Yes, but make sure it is in context. Also, use Kingdom language. “In the Kingdom we act different.” Be a partner with your child, help them succeed.

~Book suggestion: Shepherding A Child’s Heart

Q: Do some children need harder spankings then others?

A: Yes, but you never want to leave a mark. The purpose of the spanking is not to correct a behavior. It is to allow the child, when he/she is older,  a moment of awareness while the child is faced with a decision between right and wrong. A way to strengthen the conscience, so the child is questioning wether or not there is a consequence to the choice he/she will make. Spanking should teeter off around the age of 6-7. A note for boys: let dad take over the spanking after a time. There is something demeaning when a mom does it with a slightly older boy.

~In the series Diane addresses this in more detail.

~Book Suggestion: Lean In

Some things that resonated with me.

-Being a great couple(you and spouse) together is one of the best things you can do for your kids.

-Your husband is a hero and your kids need to see this. When he comes home in the evenings, treat him as a hero coming home from battle. He is battling for you to stay home, to eat, have clothes, and provide a home for you. Honor him for what he is doing.

~Emerson Eggerichs, author of Love and Respect, is coming out with a new 8 week study called Respectfully Yours.

When I first heard Diane’s series, the way I parented was immediately challenged, in a great way. I loved her principals and I am able to see the fruit in her 4 grown up kids. I hope this series inspires you and refreshes your parenting skills.

 

 

How To: Whiteboard

I was pleasantly surprised at how easy and inexpensive it was to create my own whiteboard. It was a one stop shop at Home Depot, they carried all three items I needed.

  • 1 Shower board
  • 1 roll of Scotch decorative duct tape
  • 1 package of 3m velcro hanging strips

A 4×8 whiteboard can cost upwards of $300. My whiteboard was about $25!

Here’s the secret, go to Home Depot and ask for a shower board, I can not tell you where in the store it is, this is not a place I frequent. **Tip** Decide before hand how big you want your board, I went with 4×6. The boards come in 4x8s, but they can cut them down to a specified measurement. I kept the cut off part and gave it to my husband for him to use as an “idea” board for when he is coming up with new designs.

I also picked up a roll of decorative 3M tape.

Use this a boarder for the whiteboard.

Use this as a boarder for the whiteboard.

Be creative with your work space! In my case, I worked in the dining room.

Be creative with your work space! In my case, I worked in the dining room.

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Hang board with 3m velcro strips. They won’t damage the walls when you are ready to rearrange or move.

 This board has been great and we use it everyday all throughout the day.

Playroom Re-Design Schoolroom

To accomodate our homeschooling needs, I spent a few days revamping our playroom into a schoolroom. This room now houses our curriculum, computers, and mediums to work out our day. It took a while to go through the kids toys and get rid of stuff they don’t play with. Luckily, they are old enough that they are willing to let go of a little of their childhood. I actually had a harder time releasing some of the things they loved playing with when they were little. Growing up is hard on us mamas, am I right?

During the process of filtering and reorganizing.

During the process of filtering and reorganizing.

It took many attempts, changing the layout before I decided on how I wanted this room to sit. I wanted a space for my daughter, my son, me, a book shelf, and for my sewing shelf.

This bookshelf is holding the Sonlight curriculum and some supplies. To the left is my work area.

This bookshelf is holding the Sonlight curriculum and some supplies. To the left is my work area.

Pictured is my desk, William's desk/area, and my sewing shelf.

Pictured is my desk, William’s desk/area, and my sewing shelf.

Against the window is Briana's desk and on the wall to the left is our whiteboard which measure 6x4.

Against the window is Briana’s desk and on the wall to the left is our whiteboard which measures 6×4.

This room is pretty small, but it meets our needs perfectly. In a few days, I plan on sharing an easy tutorial for making the white board that cost less than $25! When creating spaces, I like to remember what The Nester always says, “it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.”

Homeschooling with Sonlight

DECP-lToday we started our new homeschooling curriculum, Sonlight. A friend of mine introduced me to Sonlight and I fell in love with it immediately. It’s a very well put together resource, meaning I don’t have to do any planning. Sonlight is very user friendly, all I need to do is check my teacher handbook and calendar and it tells me exactly what we are doing for the day. Another thing I like about Sonlight, is that it is very big on reading, I mean look at all those books in the kit pictured! My son loves to read, so this is going to be great for him right off. With this curriculum we are studying American History, Language Arts, and Bible. Also, we have incorporated into our day Singapore Math, Math Teaching Textbooks, Spelling to Read and Write, and learning to write with cursive handwriting. I am gaining a whole new appreciation for homeschooling, I admit, in the beginning, I was nervous and pretty much dreaded the thought of homeschooling. Now, I find myself excited to start our day and eager to dive into our materials. To help with our transition, I recently transformed our playroom into a school room. I will post about that later with a few pictures.