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Christmas Poem for Moms

I found this poem at http://www.share-christmas.com/gifts/love.htm and thought I would share it here.

CHRISTMAS LOVE

Paraphrase of 1 Corinthians 13.

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, I’m just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at
mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I’m just another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir’s cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.

Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the spouse.

Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love doesn’t envy another’s home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.
Love doesn’t yell at the kids to get out of the way.

Love doesn’t give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can’t.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails. Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust, but giving the gift of CHRISTMAS LOVE will endure.

The Great Gingerbread Man Escape, Part 2

Last year we did this activity for the first time. We made our own gingerbread. Then we made gingerbread men out of our delicious gingerbread.

(I must have used extra molasses this year. They turned out much darker than last year.)

When we put the first batch in the oven, we opened the oven before they were quite done and they jumped out of the oven and ran away. Does this sound like the story “The Gingerbread Baby”? Well, that’s what it’s supposed to sound like.

Then we had people email us and send us post cards telling us where they had seen one of our gingerbread men and what he was doing. Would you please help us track down our runaway gingerbread men this year?

Please leave a comment here or send me an email or post card – however you want to inform us of the whereabouts of our gingerbread men.

Here is what we did with the gingerbread men who were not able to escape:

Morgan shows us how to make a gingerbread man.
The twins waiting patiently for gingerbread men
Kelsey is an expert at making gingerbread.
He's at it again!
She doesn't even have to try.
We are having SO much fun! Right, Kelsey?
Oh No! The gingerbread men are gone! Where did they go?!!
The next batch hung around to be decorated.
We caught a whole bunch of them!

Giveaway of Discovery Channel's Planet Earth



Go to the Homeschool Toolbar blog and find out more about this fantastic giveaway of Discovery Channel’s Planet Earth, an $80 value. I have been saving up Swagbucks to try to earn enough to get this as a prize there. I love the footage that I’ve seen of this series. The cinematography is exceptional. I love the baby bird falling out of the nest into a bed of leaves. It didn’t get hurt, and it looked so cute as it fell through the air. There were lots of amazing scenes in the preview I saw. I’m sure it will be a wonderful DVD series to own. Go to the Homeschool Toolbar blog and check it out.

Homeschooling vs Christian school or homeschool co-op

I would choose homeschooling over any other option for the education of my children. I wouldn’t send my children away from me or from my home for long periods of time for any kind of education. Even if I had lots of money to afford Christian school or any type of education outside of the home, I wouldn’t send my children to it. I believe the very best life for a Christian mother and her children is to live and learn together.

And these are my reasons:

1. God has called me to it. My main goal in life is to obey God. Above all else, I want to do God’s will. I know that my ministry for this season of my life is to disciple my children. It took several years for the Lord to convince me that this was enough; this was plenty; this was it!

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2. Quantity time is more effective than quality time. We should intentionally use our time with our children to teach, train and disciple them, but some time just hanging out with them is important, too. We don’t know what they’re picking up from us just by being around us all day. Of course, we don’t want to be grumpy or irritable with them. We should treat them better than we treat our best friend or a stranger that we automatically act courteously toward.

Now wouldn't you want to hang around people you feel this comfortable with?
Now wouldn't you want to hang around people you feel this comfortable with?

3. Children are influenced by the people with whom they spend the most time. I want my children to be with mature people who believe the way I do. I want to be the main influencer in the life of my children. I believe the Holy Spirit directs me each day to teach them what He wants them to learn and to love them with His love. I teach the older children in the ways of the Lord, and then they help me teach the younger children how to live a life that is pleasing to the Lord.

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4. I believe the Bible and spiritual training are the most important things for children to learn. We spend a lot of time praying and reading the Bible together. We have many discussions about spiritual subjects that we wouldn’t have time for if my children were gone most of the day each day. I get to know my children very well, and I know better how to pray for them, because I’m with them so much of the time.

Garrett, 5, took this picture.  Not bad!
Garrett, 5, took this picture. Not bad!

5. I can raise my children to feel secure and confident and content with who they are. Children feel secure knowing that their mother is home. They know that home is a safe place where they are loved and protected. They learn how to make their future homes secure, safe, happy places. They know who they are in Christ because I have taught them the Word and I have treated them with dignity and respect. They have been shielded from attacks on their self-image that often happen in groups of children. They have been protected from conflicting teachings that could confuse them as they are learning the basic foundations of the biblical worldview.

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6. We can build our family into a close-knit unit to glorify God. Our children are taught to honor their father and mother, and we model for them, to the best of our ability, the love of the Father for them. We pass onto them the importance of family and the roles of father and mother and each member of the family. The family is a microcosm of the Body of Christ, the Church. As we learn how to get along with each other and handle conflict within our family, we prepare them for dealing with other people, especially fellow believers with whom they may fellowship and work together in ministry.

That's us - - close-knit!
That's us - - close-knit!

7. There is no real need for socialized education. Children do not need to be surrounded by other children while they are learning. A classroom situation is not the optimal learning environment. One-on-one is more efficient and makes it easier to track the progress of each child. Children who are more sociable can find opportunities to interact with other children in a much more meaningful way outside of a public school classroom.

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8. Individualized education has many benefits. The children are able to study subjects that they are really interested in and are gifted in. They learn to be responsible and to take charge of their own education. The learning really sticks because it is something they are really interested in and want to know more about. They don’t just study for the test and promptly forget everything after the test is over. My children are able to immerse themselves in a subject that they want to learn more about. I make resources available to them and encourage them to explore them. The learning is so thorough that they remember what they’ve learned long after they studied it. They have good retention and good understanding, not just a surface knowledge that would enable them to do well on a multiple-choice test. They would do well on an essay test! I have to ask my children many things because I know they remember it even though I’ve forgotten or never really understood it.

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These are my thoughts about homeschooling and the reasons I do what I do. For me and my family, homeschooling is the very best form of education and the one that is our calling.