Kids write the funniest things!

kids write

Ahhhh….the life of a homeschool mom!

I was going back through some of my two daughters’ vocabulary sentence notebooks from a few years ago. Whether more serious like my oldest daughter, or a goofball like my youngest daughter (who takes after her mom!), their senses of humor certainly came out in their writing assignments.

Here is a compilation, in no particular order, are 13 of the “best of the best” guaranteed to make you laugh taken directly from the real-life vocabulary sentence notebooks…

1. She did not know that they do mathematics in the Delaware militia.

2. The tranquil tortoise uniquely remembers going to a unique university in a different universe to learn how to use a vacuum.

tranquil tortoise

3. The mischievous lieutenant (who had been causing mischief), caught pneumonia a day before he had to pay the mortgage.

4. She is afraid the physician will persist with insistence that she get a porcelain cat.

5. The literate mayor will carry a sapphire into a quagmire.

6. One potato makes a whole plate of french fries. (Very profound!)

7. The fierce flies forgot about the giant foot and their guide got stepped on.  (This one came complete with an illustration!)

8. The mayor looked awfully suspicious when we found him adjacent to the butte in our backyard.

9. The book which you just read (the one that gave you a headache) is substantial.

10. The elephant will be frightened by everybody in the grocery store.

11. The cashier was courteous enough to give me a free chicken.

chicken

12. The president’s spontaneous reaction while trying taxidermy while eating was not pleasant. (He threw up).

13. The laborious cavalier has a quarrelsome leopard that eats dandelions.

Thank you for traveling down memory lane with me. What are some of the funniest things your kids have written?

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the importance of voting

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As we embark on yet another election, I’m reminded of why it’s important to vote.

  • Voting is a right not every country has. We are blessed to have a say in who governs us. It is our chance to have a voice in the topics that matter most to us.
  • Voting is our duty to our country. We thank those who died for our freedom to vote by utilizing that freedom.
  • Voting is a privilege. A right. A benefit of living in this wonderful country where men and women have given their lives for this right. I have an old saying that I say each year: “If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain about the outcome.”

My grandma, Nanie, was the trusted investigator for our entire extended family, which included five families, all with the same political leanings. Months before the election, she would thoroughly investigate and see which candidates in all of the races, from local, to state, to federal, espoused our same belief system in the things that were important to our families. My mom and dad showed my siblings and me the importance of voting, as neither ever missed an election.

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So how do you model the importance of voting to your children or grandchildren?

  • From an early age, let your children go with you when you vote if possible. My girls, from the time they were in our double baby-jogger stroller, accompanied me to the voting venue.
  • Express your beliefs and values with your children. Discuss the criticality of voting for those who share your morals and beliefs. What’s most important to you? Where do you stand on life vs. abortion? The Second Amendment? Religious liberties? Taxes? The role of government? What type of candidate do you want to see in the role of leadership? Why?
  • Encourage your children to ask questions. When they are adults, they will have their own opinions, but you can set the foundation for the values you hope they will emulate.
  • Don’t shy away from the hard questions. Your kids are growing up in an increasingly difficult and hostile world. Things we’ve never seen before have suddenly become commonplace. Don’t be afraid to open up the lines of communication, especially with tweens and teens.
  • Go over the sample ballot with them. Our local newspaper prints a sample ballot each election year. Our family sits at the dining room table and discusses the objectives of the candidates, based on public forums, debates, and their websites. Our daughters weigh in on who they would vote for if given the chance.
  • Engage in a mock election. When I taught Constitutional Literacy at our local homeschool co-op two years ago, we had a mock election on everything from president to the city council. We conducted it like a real election – discussing the candidates’ views on the hot-button issues. Each of my students voted in private. We then tallied the scores and watched in coming weeks to see how closely they resembled the real outcome.

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Modeling truth and aligning your beliefs with the Word of God is critical. When your children are grown, they will make their own decisions. What they choose is not up to you, but how you give them the tools to make the right choices is.

Get out there and let your voice be heard!

 

 

the importance of relying on God

Relying on God

Everyday I rely on God for the big things: every breath, health and safety for my family, food, clothing, shelter, my husband’s job, help and healing for my mom, nephew, and niece for their chronic illnesses and pain; and the list goes on.

But what about the seemingly “small” things? The things that some people don’t even give a second thought to? What about relying on God for those things?

Take, for instance, my fear of needles. I have to prepare myself a week in advance for my annual wellness blood draw, and I have to lie down to avoid fainting during the procedure. It doesn’t help they can never find a vein, and that when they do, my little teeny selfish veins refuse to give up blood no matter how hydrated I am. Or the recent crown the dentist put on a cracked tooth. The several needles she used to numb me was traumatic.

But to others, needles are not a big deal. But for those of us with what I call “glitches in our systems” who have strange, but common fears like needles, relying on God to get us through the needle moments is huge.

Relying on God is an essential part of our faith. We need Him. Everyday. He tells us to trust Him, to rely on Him, that He will supply our needs and strengthen us.

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I’m thankful in a way that I do have needle phobia. When my recent crown was completed (my daughters called this my “coronation,” so I have officially been crowned, lol!) the gratitude and humility that washed over me was immense. Tears filled my eyes, as I praised God for yet again getting me through another “needle moment in life.”

Had I not struggled with the crown or the annual blood draw, or the times throughout my life when I’ve had IVs (pregnancy, appendicitis, and a dental surgery), then I would not have been overwhelmed with the gratitude of God’s provision for the small things as well as the big things.

So how do we show our gratitude to our Creator for all that we rely upon Him for?

  • Praise Him often. For everything we know about and everything that He has protected us from that we may not even have realized.
  • Praise Him with sincerity.  True devout humility to the One who gives us our every breath.
  • Praise Him with worship. Praise Him with a song and exalt His holy name. I will magnify Him with thanksgiving.

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  • Praise His name when talking to others. Tell them of His wondrous works and how you relied on Him – and He came through for you.
  • Praise Him through a gratitude journal. Keeping track of answered prayers and the times you relied on Him is a good way to help remember all He has done.

What seemingly “small” things have you relied on God for lately?

Movie Monday: Where Love Found Me

Movie Monday

If you only watch a few movies this year, this should be one of them!

A touching story inspired by true events, “Where Love Found Me” takes the viewer into the realities of children living on the streets. When documentary director, Hudson, sets out to make a movie about street children in China, his plans take a different route when he discovers the lives these children live and the dismal futures they face. The truth tugs at his heart, and he seeks to make a change. But will the process threaten his life and the lives of those he seeks to protect?

where love found me (2)

Faith, drama, and humor highlight this movie that will bring tears to your eyes, as well as prod you to make a difference in the world for the millions of children worldwide who dream of a forever home through adoption. This is definitely a family movie, and you will find yourself rooting for Hudson, Rubelyn, and the other street children. However, due to the nature of the film, this movie is for teens and up.

The parallel between a man who gives his life for the children and our Savior Jesus Christ is profound in this movie, and reminds us that we are here but for a short time. In that short time, what can we do to make an eternal difference in the lives of others?

My recommendation? Don’t just rent or stream this movie. It’s one to buy for the keeper shelf! I give it a hearty five starts out of five.

More information can be found at the “Where Love Found Me” website.

The trailer for this movie can be found on the website and also at

 

 

3 things to do this month

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Looking for a way to make a difference this month? Check out these great ideas!

Ministry Opportunity #1: Sharing God’s Word around the world:

Do you have any extra Bibles (new or used), Christian magazines, tracts, non-fiction Christian books, or Sunday school supplies? Looking for a way to make sure they are donated to somewhere that is making a difference?

Love Packages is “a ministry aimed at putting Christian literature and Bibles into the hands of people around the world…We send them to ministries in many poor countries to distribute freely to people hungry for the Word of God”.

Not only does Love Packages accept donations of the above-referenced items, but they are also in need of monetary donations to enable them to ship the materials. According to their website, the average cost to ship one container is $4,200. They are also always in need of volunteers to assist in packing the materials.

For more information on Love Packages, please visit their website.

Ministry Opportunity #2 Showing the love of Christ to the least of these:

Gather your family and go shopping this Christmas (a bit early!). Operation Christmas Child provides boxes of toys, school supplies, and hygiene items to underprivileged children in other countries. Not only that, but through these boxes, precious children have an opportunity to know the love and saving grace of Jesus Christ.

You can even build a shoebox online if you’re crunched for time.

All of the information for this amazing ministry can be found here. Please take special note of the items allowed (and not allowed!) in the shoeboxes.

Hurry! Collection of the shoeboxes takes place November 12-19. Drop off locations are available at the website.

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Ministry Opportunity #3: Putting together a foster care kit.

According to the most recent data, there are over 400,000 children in foster care (source: The AFCARS Report) in the U.S.

Many people will be able to foster a child. Some will be able to adopt a child from foster care. And several will be able to help provide clothing and toys to children in foster care.

A friend of mine who works with foster children and their foster parents told me today that some children arrive in their foster homes with nothing. Some have no clothing, not even underwear or pajamas.

Put together a foster care kit for children placed in emergency foster care by providing the following: new or gently used clothing, a new toy (stuffed animal, coloring books and crayons, etc.), and a book. Deliver the kit to your local family services agency.

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For more ideas, check out 77 Ways Your Family Can Make a Difference.

What ways do you and your family make a difference?

Movie Monday: Finding Father Christmas

Movie Monday

Based on the book by popular author, Robin Jones Gunn, Finding Father Christmas takes us into the life of Miranda, a real estate agent who struggles each year with the Christmas season because her mom died suddenly during that time 20 years ago.

Miranda never knew who her dad was, but when some of her mother’s belongings are discovered at the theater where she performed, Miranda finds some clues. One of the clues, a photograph, takes her to a small Vermont town. Could the photo hold the key to who her father is?

Staying at an inn and seeking the help of the handsome son of the inn’s owners, Miranda embarks on a search for not only her father, but also a search for a the kind of Christmas she’s always dreamed of. Can those longings she’s held in her heart since she was a little girl and lost her mom be realized? Will Miranda disrupt the lives of an unsuspecting family with her discovery?

Finding Father Christmas is a heartfelt story of hope and love. It’s a story of realizing that people who are giving and kindhearted truly do exist in a world, where we so often hear otherwise. It’s the perfect movie for the snowy winter days preceding Christmas.

[Possible spoiler alert] There is no objectionable material in Finding Father Christmas, and I recommend it for tweens and above. However, as a Christian reviewer and a mom myself, I do need to bring up the fact that there is the question of Miranda’s mother’s and father’s relationship and how it intersects with the relationships of others and the fact that they were not married. These are not details that are dwelt upon in the movie, but they are excellent discussion topics for families.

Erin Krakow (When Calls the Heart) and Niall Matter both give commanding performances. All in all, I recommend Hallmark’s Finding Father Christmas and give it a Christmasy 4.5 stars out of five. 🙂

 

 

 

 

5 ways to be your “sweet self”

5 ways

From as far back as I can remember, my mom has always used the saying, “just be your sweet self.”

Whether in day-to-day life or dealing with a difficult situation, my mom reminded my siblings and me that being our sweet selves was, in essence, treating others as we would like to be treated and loving our neighbor. Even when someone was unkind, our response was not to be one of retaliation or revenge, but of kindness.

1 Corinthians 13 4a

Easier said than done, to be sure. It’s not always easy to be our “sweet self” to the difficult people we encounter in our daily lives. It’s a continual growing process made possible only with constant prayer and the help of the Holy Spirit.

Here  are five ways to practice being your “sweet self”:

  • Seek to bless others. Pray each morning for a chance to bless someone else – and watch God provide the opportunity!
  • Give the benefit of the doubt. We’ve all jumped to conclusions about another’s thought life or motives. But no one knows for sure what someone else is thinking, or what their true heart motive is. So…when in doubt, give the benefit of the doubt. Think the best of people.
  • Be polite. “Please,” and “thank you” are no longer used as often as they should be. Seek to use good manners, no matter what your age. (And teach your children to do the same!)
  • Live in the moment. Time passes quickly, and we can never recapture those lost moments again. Live in the moment – take the time for that hug from your husband. Spend time with your children. Visit that elderly neighbor who struggles with loneliness. Spend time in the Word and in worship of our Savior.

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  • Strive to be worthy of your calling. One of my favorite verses and one of the prayers of my heart is Ephesians 4:1. Paul is admonishing us to “live a life worthy of the calling you have received.” If you are seeking to honor God in all that you say and do, you will have an easier time being your “sweet self”.

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What are some ways you practice being your “sweet self”?