Marriage Talk with Gary and Penney

Gary and I recorded a Facebook Live in which Gary talked about several topics including:

  1. Intimacy (which somehow included something about a candy bar and swinging upside down in a tree?!)
  2. The damaging effects of promiscuity
  3. The importance of commitment and covenant
  4. Causes of a midlife crisis and how to handle it
  5. A man’s purpose and how a wife can help her husband find it
  6. Change within a marriage and how God helps us to adapt and get stronger
  7. God’s provision and no fear even in the midst of transition

 

 

https://facebook.com/penneymarie/videos/vb.1349354099/10215770374636214/?type=2&video_source=user_video_tab

 

10 Commandments of Raising Kids Who Love God

1. Treat kids like people, not your possessions.

Treat them with dignity and respect. Be kind and gentle to them. Be as nice to them as you are to your friends and to strangers. Don’t take out your frustrations on them. Don’t talk down to them or be condescending.

2. Give kids freedom to explore and play.

Let them use their imagination. Charlotte Mason calls it Masterly Inactivity. If you haven’t heard of Charlotte Mason, you can google her name and find out lots of great information about her and her philosophy of raising and educating children.

Let them come up with their own ideas of things to do. Don’t call them away from something they are enjoying and using their imagination for to do a workbook or something you had planned. Unless you know for sure that the other thing is better for them than what they are doing. Let them spend a lot of time outside. They process the things they learn from books and what you teach them during their down time. They make connections. They think more deeply about things. They make the knowledge and information their own. It sticks better.

3. Let them be who they are.

Don’t try to make them act and think just like you.

4. Pray with them about using their talents and gifts to glorify God from the time they are young.

Practice prophetic parenting. Help them find their purpose. Be led by the Spirit and follow your intuition when it comes to the best way to relate to your children.

5. Bless them and speak well of them to themselves.

Tell them how glad you are that God gave them to you. Tell them what you see in them, their strengths and abilities. Make sure you have their hearts. Keep the connection strong. Spend time with them. Make good memories with them.

6. Give them a strong family identity to feel proud of and tell them that they have an important role in the family.

Their prayers matter. Build up their sense of security and confidence.

7. Show them unconditional love.

Do everything you do for them out of love for them, not to get your own needs met. Don’t try to control them. Correct the discipline with grace. Disciple them. Communicate clearly and lovingly. Don’t assume that you know their motives. Let them tell you what they think and feel. Show lots of affection. Spend one on one time with them. Find out what is going on with them, especially when there’s conflict or they seem out of sorts. When they are acting most unlovable pull them close and show the most love.

8. Give them attention and encourage their efforts.

Encourage their imagination. Spend time with them. Let them interrupt you to show you something they did or saw or want to talk about that was interesting to them. Listen to them. Show interest in what they are interested in. Don’t talk at them and dominate the conversation. Let them talk.

9. Point them to God as their Father who will always be there for them to love them and take care of them.

Teach them to put God first in their lives and to ask Him to fill them with His Spirit. Teach them to go to Him to get every need met. Teach them how to hear God’s voice.

10. Teach them to pray and believe and trust God and expect Him to answer their prayers.

https://www.periscope.tv/penneymaried/1LyGBROgLwjGN

10 Commandments for Raising Kids Who Love God

 

We can do things in such a way that will make our children more likely to love God. Raising 10 kids has given me the opportunity to test these 10 ideas about what those things might be. They have produced some good results. In this scope I share the top 10 principles I have used in raising my kids to see God as their Father and themselves as children of a loving King who made everything.

 

 

https://www.periscope.tv/penneymaried/1LyGBROgLwjGN

 

 

Marriage Retreat in the Mountains of North Carolina

My husband, Gary, and I went to a marriage retreat called Come Away. Hal and Melanie Young hosted the retreat. They are really good teachers and wonderful hosts with a heart for families and marriage.

 

You can find their website at Raising Real Men.

Watch this scope in which Gary and I talked about our time at the retreat – some of what we learned and what we experienced there.

https://www.periscope.tv/penneymaried/1MYxNjerzpQxw

The Charlotte Mason Method According to Me

The purpose of this post is to describe how I have adapted the Charlotte Mason method to my personality style and styles of my children, our family dynamics, my energy level, my priorities, and my Great Expectations!

The biggest element of our Charlotte Mason education and homeschool method altogether is reading aloud. I discovered this key when I took a closer look at what was working and what wasn’t in our daily homeschooling endeavors. I saw that making my children do workbooks and forcing them to think about what I wanted them to think about was making it feel like a fight every day. It was like I was the evil ogre and they were the poor frightened children who were at my mercy, and making them learn was my weapon against them. That is not exactly what I had in mind when I started homeschooling them, and it’s not how I wanted every day to feel.

I thought about what I enjoyed and what they enjoyed each day, and it didn’t take long to realize that it was the time we spent reading a good book together. I then thought about the different subjects they were learning about just from the stories I read aloud to them. Most of them were from different periods in history, so they were learning about history. Most of them were about different places on earth, different countries, different parts of our own country, different cultures. You know what subject that is, or subjects those are, don’t you? We were covering geography, social studies, social sciences, cultural anthropology (!), and more social type stuff. Not to mention, the elements of a story, good writing, character development, plot development, setting, descriptive writing, too much to mention, right?

And they were interacting mind to mind, heart to heart, with ideas and thoughts of some of the best writers the world has known. Not to mention, the stories and biographies of great men and women who have been greatly used by God and the principles of the Kingdom of God from the books I chose. The inspiration to live a great life for God, wholly committed to Him and being a person of strong character, integrity and virtue were also thrown into the mix. Win, win, win!!!

So that’s my spiel about why reading aloud is such a great thing. And choosing good, living books.

Now onto some other ways that I have adapted the CM method so that it works for us.

We have done notebooking and lapbooking in the past. Some of my children have enjoyed it and thrived with it. Others did it because I asked them to. Most of them keep notebooks of their own, even as they have gotten older. It helps them to keep their stuff organized.

We have done lots of nature study for science. Just look at all of the caterpillar posts on my blog, and you will see how seriously I take the butterfly’s metamorphosis! We have had tadpoles become frogs. We have learned about rocks, minerals, earth science topics, through living books from the library. We watch documentaries. I encourage them and resource them to study whatever science topic they express interest in.

The other branches of science come up according to their interest and through life in general, and we research whatever we want to know more about.

History is sometimes a discussion topic when we are talking about current events. I also have many DVD’s and CD’s that cover history topics.

We have studied History chronologically, biblically, by countries and regions, etc.

We have acted out scenes from different time periods occasionally, too.

I see these activities as whetting their appetite, and giving them a foundation that they can build on and develop according to their interests and needs later on.

Math is always a challenge. I keep trying different things looking for the best method for each child. I make sure they have the basic skills and basic facts memorized, then supplement as they show me more of what they want to do with their lives.

We have used Teaching Textbooks, Life of Fred, CTC math, and Living math activities in the kitchen. My youngest is currently using Master Books Math Lessons for a Living Education, and seems to enjoy that.

We do some picture study, some composer and music appreciation (just identifying a song and its composer) and some study of composers and artists through living books from the library.

We do copywork from Queen Homeschool Supplies and some from Character Italic published by Shaw Family Media since I like to use Italic handwriting with my children.

Copywork can be used to help with handwriting and such skills, but it can also be used to inspire and teach moral lessons. It can be used to help with scripture memorization and study, too.

Narration is an important part of reading aloud. I mostly use it to review what happened the last time we read the story, but it’s a good way of helping them to take the learning and memory to a deeper level than it would have gone without the act of narration. I find that my kids remember a lot better than I do when I ask them to catch us up on what happened last.

I am an educator. I love teaching and learning. But I am not a drill sergeant. I am not the fount of all knowledge. I am a person, and I recognize that each of my children is a person with his own interests, moods, needs, abilities, strengths, weaknesses, callings, struggles, rhythms, routines, and minds that are known only to them and God. I see myself as a facilitator of education, learning, and attaining their dreams and desires. I do not want to be a stumbling block or an obstacle to their gaining skills and knowledge and reaching their own goals, dreams, desires and hopes because of something that a book decided or I decided they needed to devote lots of time and brain space and thinking time to because someone else arbitrarily decided they needed to know it.

So there you go! Take from it what you will. I hope something in all of this may help someone to relax a little more and enjoy the learning experience and lifestyle that we call homeschooling.

Ask the Lord how your philosophy, curriculum (or lack thereof) and routines and habits, patterns and rhythms should flow in your family to bring honor to Him and establish His purposes for each of your children. And may peace and contentment reign in the atmosphere of your home to minimize stress and relationship problems while each of you strives to become all that God meant for you to be.