Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sabbath Observance

We are a family that regularly practices keeping the sabbath holy. Some of the things that we have found helpful as we seek to set the day apart as a special day devoted to the Lord are to wake up to christian music (focusing our minds upon God) such as Steve Green's Hide Em' In Your Heart volume 1 and 2 for children. We then have our own personal worship, get dressed, eat breakfast, and go and hear dad preach. After worship service and during lunch we discuss the sermon and sometimes use this as a time for practicing hospitality. We all work together to clean up and then have family worship by reading our Bibles, praying, and reciting our memory verses and then rest time for 2 hours. At that time my husband and I will either listen to a sermon together or read individually (currently I am going through G.I. Williamson's Study Guide of the Westminster Confession of Faith) or read a book together, currently it is Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges. At that time the older children can read individually the Bible or a christian biography or listen to music or write a letter. After the children wake up we watch a Moody science video or a Creation Museum video together and then spend time talking about it together. When the weather is nice we will go on a long walk together and talk about God's wonderful creation or play a game together or just sing hymns together. Finally, we eat dinner and then have an evening time of family worship in which we will then recite catechism questions, read our Bible, and pray together. We then send the children up to bed to listen to music and read their Bibles. We make this a special day and the children look forward to the Lord's Day each week.

Today was extra special because my sweet husband performed his very first baptism on a dear lady whom we have spent the past 6 months disciplining. Her entire family got to be present and got to hear a clear presentation of the Gospel. We are praying that it will take root in their lives and that they would repent of their sins and place their trust in Christ alone for salvation. In the next few posts I will write more about her and show a picture of this special baptism.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

a few of the important things a mom does

Laundry, cooking, nursing babies, changing diapers, meal planning and grocery shopping, teaching school, cleaning house and training children to do the same thing, reading books for your own growth and for the children. If you have ever been sick or away from the home you know just how much you are missed and how important your job really is.

Just the other day, I was feeling overwhelmed with the amount of responsibility I have and guilty for asking for help. My sweet husband reminded me that I should not feel guilty and that everything is ultimately his responsibility (he answers to God for how he manages the household God is giving him), he is the head of the house, I am his helpmate and he is just delegating certain responsibilities to me. So for me to ask for help from him is no problem at all.

most important job in the world

Mom- your job is the most important job in the world. Being a mom is special, crucial, life changing, wonderful, hard, and very rewarding. It is special because God gave you your children and no one else can raise them like you can. It is crucial because future generations are learning from you, so teach them well because they are watching EVERYTHING you do and don't do. It is life changing because it changes you. You are no longer focused only on your own selfish desires but now have children to focus your attention upon. It is wonderful because you get to teach your child, train your child, discipline your child, love your child and they love you back, and disciple your child in the ways of God. You get to point your children to God. You get to teach them to read, and to think, and to figure out their worldview. It is hard because it is ALL TIME CONSUMING. It requires giving of your time and not being selfish. It is very rewarding because we have the privilege of training future moms and dads who will change the world. Being a mom is the best thing in the world. It is a high calling. Even when your children leave the home, your job does not stop. Once a mom-always a mom! Personally, I don't know why any Christian would turn down the opportunity to have children and to raise them to the glory of God. I am not condemning anyone on their decisions. I am just saying that it is a wonderful gift from God to have such a high calling in life.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

I finished the baking yesterday and made the platters today. We also proudly made our Christmas delivery rounds today. Pictures of the finished product will be posted soon. In the next few posts I will be including some of the delicious recipes I made. Presents are wrapped, the turkey is in a brine, Christmas eve service is over, and the children are all asleep. Now we wait anxiously for Christmas morning where we will read the story of Christ's birth, sing some Christmas hymns, pray, and then open the gifts. Later we will celebrate Christmas with a delicious turkey meal with some fellow church members.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Cookie Day

Today the kids and I had a blast making sweets for our church members. Tomorrow my husband will be delivering all the wonderful platters to our members. Here are a few pictures of our progress we made today. We made 8 different desserts and finished them all today.

recent snow storm pictures with wrong date

This morning as my husband was looking at my blog, I noticed the dates on those pictures. That is funny! Recent snow storm- January 4, 2005! I dropped my camera and forgot to reset the date. The actual date should have been December 22, 2008!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Pictures from recent 2 snow storms and more snow still to come

My two oldest children went out to play today and had a blast making snow tunnels, so I took pictures of their work. Joshua laid on the floor in front of the wood stove all day sick with the flu. The day before it was Aaron. It makes me wonder who will be next. My turn was first, last week. Hopefully, by Christmas everyone will be well. Enjoy the pictures!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Land of Nod

The Land of Nod
by Robert Louis Stevenson
From breakfast on through all the day
At home among my friends I stay:
But every night I go abroad
Afar into the land of Nod
All by myself I have to go,
With none to tell me what to do-
All alone beside the streams
And up the mountainsides of dreams.
The strangest things are there for me,
Both things to eat and things to see,
And many frightening sights abroad
Till morning in the land of Nod.
Try as I like to find the way,
I never can get back by day,
Nor can remember plain and clear
The curious music that I hear.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Memorization work

One of the joys we have in school is memorization work. Our family is currently memorizing scripture, catechism, hymns, and poems. The poems come from their grammar book, First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind by Jesse Wise. The poems are just wonderful and I wanted to share one with you today.

"Hearts are Like Doors"
Hearts, like doors, will open with ease,
to very, very little keys,
And don't forget that two of these
Are "Thank you, sir" and "if you please!"
This poem teaches us that when people like you their "hearts will open with ease". When you are polite and grateful for what they do for you, they "open their hearts" to you.
This is a poem from the first grade book. Tomorrow, I will be sharing a poem from the 3rd grade book. I just love these books because they are written by a former home-schooler and are a lot more "home school friendly" when you are teaching multiple children at the same time. Everyone gets to participate and no one feels left out. In fact, because we put the poems on the walls, the children help one another and are eager to recite them anytime of the day.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

the long lost blogger returns!

The busyness of motherhood and the flu has taken me away from the computer! I am back now to post a few things in life we have discovered, and love, and hope that someone else will too. Here is my list:

1. Signing Time videos- wonderful for teaching children to sign using ASL sign.
2. Charlie's Soap- laundry detergent recommended by Kim over at . Kim has 11 children and recommended this very economical laundry detergent. It thoroughly cleans clothes (even poop) and leaves them smelling clean and looking bright.
3. Vision Forum- Yes, for those of you out there who hate them, I am sorry. I think that they teach men how to lead their families, women how to train their daughters to be feminine, and children to honor and obey their parents. Don has been listening to Scott Brown on Reforming the Family and I have been listening to the 200 year Plan. Even though we may not agree with everything the basic principles are there. Men should get a vision, lead their families, teach their boys to be men and their daughters to be ladies, and disciple their wives.
4. Family worship- This is one in which I cannot stress enough and need to devote an entire post to this one which I will next time. Basically for now: Read the Bible, pray, and sing hymns as a family. We also include catechism. We use Truth and Grace memory books available through . We started this all when our youngest was 2 and now he is 8. We are seeing the beauty of hiding God's Word in our hearts.
5. Time alone with my husband reading. After the children go to bed each night we make it a priority to read together. So far we have read: The Family Driven Faith, Hospitality Commands, and Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography, and are getting ready to start Respectable Sins. The areas in which we are reading include: family, piety, practical theology, and systematic theology or biblical theology, and biography. This is a time in which my husband gets to personally disciple me and I LOVE it!