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“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” Proverbs  22:6 (NIV)

Last week a few of my friends and I went to a ladies night at church. It was such a great evening! One of the points that I loved and has stuck with me was intentional parenting. My husband and I have said many times that we want to raise strong Christian children and that’s what we try to do daily with our son. The thing about intentional parenting that really stood out to me was the daily aspect, the speaker talked about finding Jesus in the everyday moments and taking those opportunities to teach our children. We don’t have to wait until Sunday morning during their Bible lessons for our children to be taught about God’s word. No child is to young or to old to start. All it takes is a simple moment where we pray, read the Bible together or talk about the beautiful day God created to start the curiosity in our child to continue asking more questions about God. If we find a way to daily teach our children about God then it won’t be by chance that we raise a strong Christian child, it will be because we were intentional!

“Children learn to smile from their parents.” Shinichi Suzuki 

Isn’t it amazing how we sit forever trying to teach our babies to say “mama” or “dada” and the fun of trying so hard to get them to learn to crawl which then leads to teaching them to walk and yet we never get tired of those moments, they are precious! Who knows how much time we really do spend trying to teach them these things. On the flip side, isn’t it funny how quickly they pick up on something that you were never trying to teach them?!? For example, this morning Eli was sitting in the middle of the living room playing with his toys happily saying “no, no, no.” As soon as I heard that I couldn’t help but to laugh. I have never sat down with him and tried to teach him the word “no” but I have had to tell him no and he has obviously learned this word. I know that this is usually every child’s favorite word for a while but I just never expected to hear him saying that this morning while playing with his toys. It’s a great reminder that our children really do pick up on things more than we realize!

Photo Credit: Paul Reynolds

Change the Cycle

January 4, 2012 — Leave a comment

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Matthew 6:33 (NIV) 

Today has been the day for us to get back into our usual routine after the holidays. We have either had family in town or was out-of-town ourselves. It has been a great time spending Christmas and the New Year with family, Eli even took his first steps while we were visiting Chase’s grandparents! Today while Eli took his nap I took down the Christmas decorations. Is it just me or does the house seem really empty when the tree gets put up for another year? It’s like there is a giant empty spot now in my living room that is usually there unless its December and the tree is up. As I look at that empty space I am trying to figure out what to fill it with but I know I will do what I always do… nothing and eventually it will look like normal until it is time for the tree to go up again. It’s a never-ending cycle that I am sure I am not alone in. While I am sitting here writing, something came to me about this cycle, it’s a lot like life. How so? Well if your like me there are some days where you feel like you don’t have enough minutes in the day. (I know I was that way Christmas Eve… trying to clean, wrap gifts, do laundry etc.) Then there are other days where you might find yourself with a few extra minutes. What do we do with those minutes? Turn on the tv, play on the computer, read, call someone or probably any number of other things and so we fill up that extra space of time until we are full and can move on with our day and then the cycle continues again. Today while I was thinking about all this I decided how great it would be to break that cycle! What if instead of filling up our every minute of every day we take those extra precious moments and praise God, read his word, listen to Him and even just rest… yes I said rest, sometimes resting is what we need too. It doesn’t have to take long to say a prayer or even listen to a favorite worship song. What can we teach our kids when we live our lives in a way that shows that we don’t constantly have to be entertained by something but yet using the time given to us wisely and in praise of our God!?!

Photo Credit: Leland Francisco

“When you hide another story in a story, that’s the story I am telling the children.” Maurice Sendak

“And now,” cried Max, “let the wild rumpus start!” Where the Wild Things Are

One of Eli’s gift we got him last month for his birthday was the book “Where the Wild Things are.” I love this book! What a classic! The artwork is so fun and the story is creative. I am all about the creative and fun filled story so when we were shopping for his present and I found the book I knew I wanted to get that for him. The story is also a great lesson for the kiddos. There are probably many lessons that could be pulled but the one in particular that I am thinking of is being free to be creative, to have fun and to be yourself. Max is a fun character with lots of imagination. He let’s that imagination run wild, literally, and makes his own world. He didn’t worry about what others thought, he just continued to be his creative fun self. Besides the fun memories this story will bring, I hope that Eli will also take from it the importance of being his own creative selves, always.

Photo Credit: Brandi Jordan

Winnie the Pooh Quotes

December 28, 2011 — Leave a comment

My husband will appreciate this post, he loves Winnie the Pooh. In fact we even dressed Eli up as Winnie the Pooh for Halloween this year and yes, he was adorable! The great thing about these quotes is that they have a good meaning and are from children’s books, read them to your children now and they will treasure these stories, quotes and memories when they grow older… just like my husband. Here is the collection I put together of Winnie the Pooh quotes by A.A. Milne.

“A little Consideration, a little Thought for Others, makes all the difference.”

“You can’t stay in your corner of the forest, waiting for others to come to you; you have to go to them sometimes.”

“Sometimes,’ said Pooh, ‘the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.”

“Think, think, think.”

“The things that make me different are the things that make me.”

“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”