Friday, September 30, 2011

Compromise...

When Jon and I were first married, one of my easy go-to dishes was spaghetti until Jon finally confessed that he really did not care for the way I made spaghetti.  He then made spaghetti his way...which I admitted I did not like.  So we quit making spaghetti in our house. 
I've been wanting my spaghetti for about two months but knew that Jon wouldn't enjoy that supper.  It finally dawned on me, why couldn't I cook two sauces?  It would be the best of both worlds!  So for the first time in years, we had a spaghetti dinner where both of us were happy.
It dawned on me as I was eating that this was a simple compromise that we should have made immediately.  Marriage is made up of small compromises, for example, the way to make a bed, the way laundry is folded, and even the way toilet paper is put on the roll.  In the end, the commitment to a life-long marriage is more important than how tightly the sheets are tucked in, whether or not the towels are tri-folded, or beef or italian sausage spaghetti.  I was glad to find a happy compromise for spaghetti and someday Buddy and Sweetpea will get to choose between "Mommy's spaghetti" and "Daddy's spaghetti".  Who knows, maybe they will enjoy both!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Lined Canvas Bins

Today I finished the Lined Canvas Bins from Positively Splendid!  I was totally excited to see the completed results and was glad to see a DIY project finished.  Hard to believe this was a diaper box before.  Check out the finished results!


I'm looking forward to making a second matching box soon!

Monday, September 26, 2011

"180"

I'm recommending that you watch the documentary "180" without too much description.  It is free to watch and only 33 minutes long.  I know that everyone has taken more time than that for movies and television shows and this is much more important that any network show.  This documentary could literally make you do a 180 in the way that you think about a very volatile issue in our society.  Enough said...go check it out!  www.180movie.com
*"180" does contain graphic images that I believe young children should not view so be sure to pre-screen before watching as a family.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Revised Chore Charts

Buddy's chore chart is still working well for our household and even Sweetpea has noticed the chart on the refrigerator.  She has been begging for weeks to put smiley faces on Buddy's chart after helping me around the house.  After a few arguments between Buddy and Sweetpea, I decided to make Sweetpea her own chart and, in the process, reorganize Buddy's. 

This is Sweetpea's new chart.  It has a few less chores than Buddy's and includes a new spot for "Extra Help".  This is for when she helps unload the dishwasher, with the laundry, or with another task from Mommy or Daddy.  You'll notice that picking up toys has not been a popular chore.

This is Buddy's new chart.  I didn't like how in the last chart that Read the Bible was our last chore listed.  This time I moved it to the top and also included the "Extra Help" section for Buddy as well.  Again, Pick up Toys is not a popular category.  Buddy normally will clean up toys but he has to be reminded many times, which defeats the purpose of the chart.  We've started giving the nickels to him in a small jar as each task is completed and this has encouraged a better response.  Immediate reward works well for a preschooler.

All in all, I am very pleased with how these charts turned out.  If you are interested in a chore chart for your child, please email me at afaithfulmommy@hotmail.com with your child's name and any other relevant information. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Green Peas Sensory Bin

Sweetpea's newest sensory bin was a simple bag of split green peas. I gave her the measuring cups and spoons again along with a small cup from her play kitchen. She was very amusing to watch at first since she really didn't want to touch the peas but wanted to scoop them up and pour them out.


Notice the wrinkled nose when she accidentally touched the peas.

After a few minutes, Sweetpea dug into the box with both hands and ended up playing for about 45 minutes.  I'm hoping that this is working to help her get over some of her sensory issues.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Parents and Teachers

As a former teacher I found the article, What Teachers Really Want to Tell Parents by Ron Clark very interesting.  I dreaded Parent Teacher Conferences because I never knew what to expect from parents and I wish some of the parents of my students had read this article.  So parents of school children, please take the time to read this article by Ron Clark and be reminded of your child's teacher's perspective.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Jumping Through Fires

Jumping through Fires: The Gripping Story of One Man's Escape from Revolution to RedemptionYesterday, Jon handed me David Nasser's book, Jumping through Fires: The Gripping Story of One Man's Escape from Revolution to Redemption and I had such a hard time putting it down!  I stayed up a little late last night because I was so wrapped up David Nasser's story and had to finish this book.  Through various youth functions, I've had the privilege of hearing David Nasser speak and have always enjoyed his messages though never knew much of his back story. 
Jumping through Fires is his personal testimony of escaping Iran during revolution and his transformation into a real and living faith in Jesus Christ as Savior.  Reading David's personal memories of his family's life and how God got a hold of him, was truly captivating.  The subtitle says it all...it really is a gripping story.  The best thing that I took away from his testimony was to live my faith in Christ in all aspects of life because you never know who is watching.  The way I treat a waitress in a restaurant could have an impact on someone else's journey to God!  If you are looking for a new read, I recommend finding a copy of Jumping through Fires immediately, but be sure to begin reading when you have plenty of time, because it is almost impossible to put down!

Monday, September 12, 2011

World Vision -- Sponsoring A Child

Today Jon and I leaped into the wonderful world of sponsoring a child!  We have always talked about sponsoring and finally decided we would sponsor a child for each biological child that we have.  Our plan is to sponsor a child that shares our children's birthdays when they turn three years old. 
This afternoon, I sat down at the computer and finally put our plan into action by visiting WorldVision.org .  Buddy now has a brother that shares his birthday all the way over in Zambia.  For $35 dollars a month, World Vision provides our child's family with clean water, healthy food, healthcare, education, and, most importantly, a spiritual foundation.  Our sponsorship package will arrive in about 10 days and I'm looking forward to introducing Buddy and Sweetpea to their new brother. 
If you are interested in learning more about how you can have an impact in a child's life, check out World Vision's website.  There are lots of ways to help make a better world for all children worldwide!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Keeping Promises

I promised Buddy a few days ago that he and I could make chocolate chip cookies when he got home from school.  By the time he got home, I had totally forgotten and apparently he had too.  He remembered today and by the end of the day, I had almost forgotten again!  I don't know if it was "pregnancy brain" or just plain ole "mommy brain" but in the middle of supper, Buddy reminded me about the cookies.  Immediately, I was filled with shame that I had forgotten and a little frustration at the time.  I didn't want put him off again so instead Jon and I decided to push bedtime back. 
Buddy and I made our cookies while Daddy gave Sweetpea a bath and put her to bed.  A very happy Buddy ate his barely cooled cookie and it was worth a later bed time to see his face filled with joy!  As a parent, I want to always keep my promises to my children and to teach them to do the same.  Following through on something as simple as chocolate cookies is a great lesson to myself, Buddy, and Sweetpea of the importance of keeping your promises!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Stickers and Fine Motor Skills

Recently, I have introduced stickers to Sweetpea's craft time and she loves them!  The added bonus for letting her peel and stick the stickers onto paper is the development of fine motor skills. 

When I first gave her the sheet of stickers, she was very excited but had no idea how to remove them and was content to just stick them to the paper.  (I have set boundaries with my children's use of stickers after finding stickers on every surface with Buddy.  Stickers can only be placed on paper or people with permission.)  After a few tries, Sweetpea was able to remove and place the stickers on her own.  Now when we start to pull out crayons and paper, she points to our sticker bin as well.  Here are a few more pictures of Sweetpea working on her fine motor skills while making beautiful art!
I love the concentration on her face in this photo!

Yes, occasionally she will taste the stickers.

Sweetpea is placing her stickers very carefully!


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Songs for Saplings

Songs for Saplings
I finally ordered Songs for Saplings for our family!  I have been wanting this CD for a while and I was super pleased with it when it arrived.  All the songs on the CD are for Scripture memory and include the Scripture references.  Buddy and Sweetpea have loved listening to it and, as you can watch, dancing to it as well.  I've had this playing in the background as we work and play around the house and already Buddy is able to sing along with a few songs.    If you are looking for a great way to encourage Scripture memory with your children, I highly recommend Songs for Saplings!   Here is a short video of my children enjoying the songs.
video