Friday, August 20, 2010

Beginning homeschooling fears

I start Monday homeschooling my seventh grade daughter. I am terrified! Of what? A pre-adolescent? Really? I had to deal with lots of those in my time....

No, that isn't it. I am terrified of screwing up my child. I am prepared, I think.... I started researching curriculum over a year ago. I went to the local conference and didn't miss a session. I interviewed other homeschooling moms. I researched public/private school options in our area. I checked into what the course of study was in the public schools. I bought curriculum (chasing down bargains). Most importantly, I prayed and I know this is God's best will for my child right now.

Am I qualified? I don't know. Am I up to the challenge? I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me!! That doesn't mean that fear isn't trying to seep in. It is a daily battle.

And honestly, I am a little selfish! Yep. I admitted it. While I look forward to spending time with her, I can't help but feel like I am cut off. I can't commit to a library storytime with my preschooler. I can't commit to a daytime bible study. I can't commit to a MOPS group. Feeling a little alone.....

But I KNOW that this is God's will and His will is always greater than we can ever imagine. I KNOW that I only have so much time left to impart great things to this child before she thinks I am an ignorant lunatic. I know that my ultimate responsibility is to be the parent God has called me to be. Being a mom is the best way to beat out our selfishness. It is always a sacrifice. This is just one more of those ways. It doesn't compare to the sacrifice that my Heavenly Father made for me.

Do me a favor? Just check in on me from time to time and help me to remember....

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I was recently reading a book in which a character mentioned that anxiety is rooted in fear and that if you have complete faith in God, there is no fear. Anxiety is defined as distress or uneasiness of mind caused by fear of danger or misfortune. Anxiety sets in if we try to control things ourselves and don't rely on God's provision. Guilty here more frequently than I'd like to admit.

A few years ago I was put on an anti-anxiety drug. A secondary usuage was for nerve pain, which I was diagnosed with. Later, the doctor told me he put me on the drugs because I seemed anxious during a visit. I was. I wonder what was his first clue? The woman crying the uncontrollable ugly cry? I don't know if the pain I was having was intensified by the anxiety or not. I wasn't on the drug long. I didn't like how it made me feel "foggy". Do I still struggle with anxiety? Yes. Absolutely. So I find studying these scriptures helps. I hope they help someone else tonight too.

Ps 27:1 - The Lord is my Light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life, whom shall I fear?

Ps 34:4 I sought the Lord and He answered me; He delivered me from all my fears.

Ps 46:1-3 God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.

Proverbs 3:23-26 Then you will go on your way in safety,
and your foot will not stumble;
when you lie down, you will not be afraid;
when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
Have no fear of sudden disaster
or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked,
for the LORD will be your confidence
and will keep your foot from being snared.

1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

He is that perfect love! Let Him comfort you and take away your fear!

Too much

Sometimes I talk too much. I know this is surprising (NOT!). I have hurt some people and disappointed others with my words and thoughts lately. Yep, the thoughts too, because thoughts become words, and words become atttudes, and attitudes dictate actions. So, if you are one of these people, I'm sorry! I need to learn when to keep my mouth shut, and to think on things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy. (See Phillipians 4:8)

School Supplies

It's that time of the year again! School supply shopping! Everyone has a different approach. Personally, I try to salvage as much as possible from last years supplies with a couple of exceptions.

The kids always get a new box of markers, colored pencils and crayons. Nothing beats the new box of crayons with their perfectly sharpened tips and it's like buying happiness in a box for a quarter!

I also buy supplies in October (as they are clearancing out overstock) for next year. Folders, binders, lunchboxes, backpacks, ink pens, pencils, etc. all keep in storage well. The key is to remember where you store them!

My least favorite thing in shopping for supplies is going to multiple stores, but sometimes it can't be helped. Stores don't always stock everything. Like Art gum erasers! Wal-mart and Target take note!

I need to make a trip to Hobby Lobby to pick up the last few things for my homeschooler's enrichment day program, but for the most part, I am done.

On to the next task.....

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Giving back (a lesson for me in gratitude)

It's so easy for me to get wrapped up in the daily life. Get up, make the coffee, get kiddos dressed, throw in the laundry (sometimes grumbling about how it never stops), yell at kids to do dishes, go to grocery store, etc. (You get the idea). Worrying about shallow things like who doesn't like me this week. Bad news all around us - unemployment rates, gas prices, grocery prices....

I've decided that I want to teach my children (and myself) that we are blessed beyond measure. That our "problems" could be much different and wider in scope. We have food to eat (good food too!), we have more than enough clothes to wear (though some of us may not be as stylish as we want!), we have a nice home with a nice bed to sleep in, we have clean water to drink.

When complaints arise about any of these things (from me as much as the children), I want to remember those who have less. Like the children in Africa. I don't say that as a guilt trip like moms that want their children to eat their brussels sprouts. I want to inspire gratefulness in my own heart as well as those of my children. I also want to live as those "to whom much is given, much is required." So I jumped at the opportunity to get involved with Kristen at We Are That Family and her Do it For Others Project for July. I volunteered as a seamstress to create dresses for Little Dresses for Africa out of pillowcases and supplies sent in by readers of the We Are That Family blog.

I created 10 dresses with the supplies I received with the help of my 12 year old and 10 year old daughters.


Here are some of our favorites.






This gave me an opportunity to dwell on how blessed I truly am and to thank God for His many blessings in my life. Gratitude is the key to a soft heart. Realizing what we have versus the ambition to always acquire more, new, better.....

It has also given me a door to discussion with my children. My 3 year old repeatedly asked when HER dresses would be finished and I was able to talk with her about how some of these children only have 1 dress and how thankful they will be to receive these.

I am resolved to continue to be an example of God's Love. AND to teach my children to do the same. It's the right thing to do.