Thursday, May 10, 2012

Let's hear it for the boys!

This is a meme hosted by the MOB Society. The point of this is expressed in their opening sentence:

In a world where it’s way too easy to see all of the negative about our boys, we want to help you intentionally look for something to brag on…


I really do love my boys. They are fun, silly, smart and all-around enjoyable. They do have their moments though when they seem to be none of the above. This past week they both woke up on the wrong side of the bed and were complaining and grumbling against one another in a big way. By 8:30 a.m. I had had quite enough! And so we instituted the idea of Team Day. Everything that happened, all day long, would have to be done together. They were told they would walk together, eat together, and play together all day long. The tattle-telling was to come to an end and if I heard a peep of it, they would also be punished together.

The experiment began at 8:30 a.m. and by 8:00 p.m. they likely had no memory of their previous disagreements, whatever they might have been. They were walking around the house, holding hands and laughing. Bookworm2 fake read a book to Bookworm1 using all kinds of silly voices that had his older brother in stitches. I saw them hugging one another. They played Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf, calmly and happily taking turns at being the wolf. There was peace and harmony and they made the day a pleasure.

I do think it is important for siblings to be friends and I hope that they will continue to be just that! Not only is it a blessing for them, but also for the entire family. More so though, I hope they learn how to be friends generally, knowing that getting along requires commitment to the word of God, first and foremost!

Learning to set aside frustrations and differences can be hard. (Ok, let's face it -- it's always hard!) We're all different, with our own strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes. Trying to be the same never works. But holding hands, speaking God's word and HIS requirements into the situation is worth the effort. My boys learned this lesson, subtly, the other day. I love that!

Bottom line - this is, essentially, what they did:

They listened to their parents' advice and accepted instruction and correction. We pray that they will hold on to that so that they can gain wisdom for the future. (Proverbs 19:20)

Great job, boys!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Inspiration

I read a great many blogs (rather, I used to read a great many more blogs than I currently do!) and every so often I come across something that I think is interesting and I want to remember it. Here are a few blog posts from other authors that have caught my attention in a significant way lately:

Do You Think Everyone Should Have Many Children? at Life as a Mother . . . of Many.

I found this blog through the Ultimate Blog Party at 5 Minutes for Moms. I confess that I (like others, I am certain!) subscribed to a few feeds and then whittled them down after a few weeks once I had gotten a feel for their regular writing style. Life as a Mother . . . of Many caught my attention, not because I'm a member of the quiverfull movement (whatever that is anyway!) but because I like the idea of having lots of kids (even if I only have three myself.) I thought this post was well-balanced and reasonable.

As an aside, I have been completely taken aback and surprised by how many comments I receive in having three children. Everytime I take them out I receive comments like, "Wow, you brought the herd with you!" or "Well, I see you have a whole lot of helpers with you today." (I love it when they assume that we're all done having children and say so.) I have to curb the snarkiness in that moment. What I WANT to say isn't what I ought to say. (Mostly I'm thinking to myself, "There are only THREE! We're a small family!" Apparently this is not so.) I'm in the process of training myself to respond politely and in support of the children who are hearing the remarks for themselves. "Yes, and they are very good helpers!" It requires a lot of discipline for me to respond this way. But I'm working on it.

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My local "real-life" friend shared about her favorite gardening books over at Beautifully Treasured. I picked up a copy of The Backyard Homestead at her recommendation. Actually, I first picked up a copy of Backyard Homesteading at Costco first, thinking that was the one she was talking about. They are both good in their own way and I plan on reviewing them both side-by-side on Reading to Know. As I'm learning more about gardening, the advice is helpful!



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I really liked this post entitled Cherishing Motherhood by Sally Clarkson over at I Take Joy. Now, I have to confess that her post feels more like a hodge podge of ideas rather than one truly coherent thought but what I took away from it was the need to teach our children to be a safe haven for each other. We all know life is rough and it's easier to weather the storms if you know you have family who surround, love and support you. This is an incredible thing to "accomplish." (I say that with full awareness that God is actually the one who blesses and gives these relationships.) It is hard to build and maintain safe and loving relationships. (Please note: when I say safe and loving I do not mean one in which the truth is never spoken and sin issues are swept under the rug in an effort to avoid conflict. I mean one in which the parties involved know it's safe to have fun and deal with deep spiritual matters without fear of being rejected.) Did I mention this was hard? (It's amazing to me sometimes to realize how many people think this is easy!)

This past week our boys were not getting along at all. With the idea in mind that they need to be a team we tried a little experiment which I plan to talk more about tomorrow. For now, I'm mulling over thoughts about how it is that I specifically foster a safe environment for our family in which we are close to one another and honoring to the Lord as well. Those are some pretty big thoughts to wrestle with, but that is where I am at, at this moment.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tag, You're It!

Ok, every so often someone tags me for a game that I feel like playing along with. I like this one because through it I got to know Bluerose's Heart better and I'll return the courtesy. (Perhaps to my detriment?!)

*****


I'm going to change the rules a bit (because I do that) and not tag anyone else in return. However, if you'd like to play along, please do. Just recycle the questions that Bluerose created for me to answer.

*****


First, I'm supposed to share 11 Fun Facts About Me. I'll try to think of something to share that I haven't shared already.

1. I used to be a member of The Official Star Trek Fan Club. I had a uniform and tricorder and everything. I was a Trekker and not a Trekkie. I feel the need to say so. I also feel the need to let you know that I was 14 at the time. Or thereabouts.

2. I dislike stories set in hot or tropical locations because I hate being hot. I have a hard time working up the interest to read The Jungle Book for instance and I cannot watch Lawrence of Arabia or even Ben Hur because they are so hot and dusty looking. Too much sweat!

3. I like the idea of being out on the ocean but I can't hardly stand actually being on a boat. Every time I get one, I spend almost the entire ride thinking about the Titanic.

4. Up until this year I have hated avacados and cucumbers. I purposefully set out to like them and I have recently been able to enjoy them!

5. I am a black and white sort of person. There is no gray in my world. Occasionally someone reminds me that gray exists but I can't always see how it factors in. There is only black or white. Why are we even discussing this!?

6. When I was a teenager and my brother was a tween, we really liked to watch Whose Line is it Anyway? The only problem was that we were not allowed to do so. However, our parents conveniently left the house for regular meetings on the night of the week that the show aired. We would sneakily watch it (and laugh hysterically) with one of us standing guard at the window to make sure we saw when mom would come home. She'd drive into the driveway and we'd turn off the tv and SPLIT! They never discovered us.

7. When I was younger I said I wanted to have seven children because that is the number of completion. The older woman I told this to nodded at me in a very sage manner and told me that I was a very interesting person. (I have three children currently.)

8. When I was a teenager I used to wear vests all the time. No. Seriously. Like every single day. I had a closet full of vests. And I wore them. Every day. I was noted for this.

I do not wear vests anymore. (I cannot.) But I still don't really have a very good sense of fashion.

9. I saran wrapped someone's car once. I didn't know them. And the wrapping didn't stick so it was basically a waste of good saran wrap. But it was fun at the time.

10. When I was young I said I wanted to be a zoo keeper. I have a very low tolerance of animals these days so I think that's probably never going to happen.

11. I really like York Peppermint Patties. But the best (and only) way to eat them is to freeze them first, then eat the sides off and work your way to the middle. I'm just letting you know.

~~~~~


And now for the questions Bluerose asked me to answer:

1. What is something that never fails to make you laugh?

Hank the Cowdog. (He's on the brain these days, as we're reading the first book aloud.)

2. If you could meet any FICTIONAL character from a book/movie, who would it be?

Ha! Anne of Green Gables. Except wait! She'd talk a lot and so maybe I'd go with Lucy from the Narnia series. I think I would like her an awful lot.

3. What's your #1 "go-to" movie?

Anne of Green Gables.

4. What is your comfort food?

Chocolate.

5. You get to grab 2 books(in addition to your Bible) off your shelf. These are the only books you will have for the next year. What do you grab?

Anne of Green Gables and The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. (I'm very predictable like that!)

6. Who is you favorite music artist/group/composer?

Steven Curtis Chapman!

7. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Prince Edward Island. (I tell you I'm extremely predictable!)

8. You get to step inside any book for a day. What book would you pick?

Umm....? ;) Well... Anne of Green Gables!

9. You get one super power. What do you pick?

I wouldn't. Because it would too easily be used for evil instead of good. I do not trust myself.

Oh, unless of course I could have A Green Thumb which can magically produce fruit on any tree and an abundance of vegetables. The ability not to kill plants would be very nice indeed!!!

10. What is one thing you never leave home without(besides wallet and keys...and kids, if you have those)?

A cell phone.

11. What is the closest thing to a phobia you have? (spiders, clowns, etc)

Slugs. *Shudder*

And now it's your turn, if you'd care to share! Thanks, Bluerose, for the fun!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Monday Daybook: 6


Time for another The Simple Woman's Daybook. And I'm getting back into the swing of things around here. I hope.

Outside my window... SUNSHINE! Sunshine all week!

I am thinking... about how I need to order the rest of my day, which has already started off in something of a chaotic manner.

I am thankful.... . . for fun fellowship. We had some people over after church yesterday and just had a great time of fellowship with personal stories and laughter. It was very fun.

In the kitchen... lunch clean-up is happening.

I am wearing... jeans and SHORT SLEEVES! (This doesn't happen often where we live, so it's notable.)

I am creating... order! I unpacked another box today. Box by box our house will eventually be put back into place (or cleaned out.)

I am going... to make quiche for dinner. I think.

I am wondering... how I'm going to make room on the bookshelves for the other box of books I just found.

I am reading... A Woman's Wisdom: How the Book of Proverbs Speaks to Everything, by Lydia Brownbeck. It. is. awesome.

I am hoping... to clean off my desk. *Hysterical laughter*

I am looking forward to... a week of sunshine.

I am learning... to slow down. (It's a constant process.)

Around the house... there are messes and people learning to get along with one another. There are tomato plants waiting to be planted and a little family of worms hopefully making some useable compost.

I am pondering... the same things I am thinking about.

A favorite quote for today...

Re: motherhood

It's a choice that's countercultural. It flies int he face of everything the world tells us to hold on to and pursue. But make no mistake - it's not about nurseries, tiny clothes, or your personal timetable. It's about the gospel. That reality makes children a choice worth making. ~ Erin Davis


This quote is taken from the book Beyond Bath Time which is written by Mrs. Davis. I just finished reading this title last week and posted my review for it over at Reading to Know. (The title is linked to my review.) I rather recommend it!

One of my favorite things... listening to my children re-enact the story of The Three Little Pigs. The boys were taking turns being the big bad wolf. They were building houses out of couch pillows and knocking them down.

A few plans for the rest of the week: hazlenuts (I hope), gathering with friends, and mostly just enjoying calm days at home underneath the brilliant sunshine which I keep referencing.

A peek into my day... actually it's been a doozie. The boys woke up squabbling and that didn't set the mood well. We've been working on attitudes and team spirit but paying attention to the attitudes does seem to be paying off. Mostly we're just teaching and learning that good relationships take work and don't come easy. Even if you are related.