Tuesday, March 22, 2011

"God Made, Home Grown" Grows Up!

Starting a blog is a lot like having a baby.
When you’re first setting it up, it seems awfully small and insignificant…especially when compared to the “big kid” blogs in town.
But slowly, over time, as you nurture it, feed it, and invest a lot of yourself in it…
…your baby–I mean, blog–grows up! (Sniff, sniff)
And so, after much, um, labor, it seemed fitting for me to give my toddler blog some new clothes and more space to stretch its legs and move about.
Business tech expert, family man, and my good friend, Andy Traub, has moved my blog to WordPress!  Go ahead, take a look...Isn’t it cute?
(when you visit Andy’s blog to tell him what a great job he did, be sure to congratulate him and his wife on the expectation of their third baby!)
I also have my own domain name now: www.godmadehomegrown.com . Please update your bookmarks!
We may experience some growing pains over there over the next few weeks, but the time has come to let this baby stand on it’s own two feet.
If you notice anything that needs tending to, please feel free to email me at tiana at godmadehomegrown dot com. (that’s right, I have a new email address, too!)
Oh! And to celebrate, I’ll be hosting some great giveaways over the next few weeks. Stay tuned!
By His Grace,
Tiana
Friday, March 11, 2011

A Gentle Reminder

I was reminded of this poem by a friend this afternoon...


"Babies Don't Keep"


Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth
empty the dustpan, poison the moth,
hang out the washing and butter the bread,
sew on a button and make up a bed.



Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.



Oh, I've grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue
(lullaby, rockabye, lullaby loo).
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due
(pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo).



The shopping's not done and there's nothing for stew
and out in the yard there's a hullabaloo
but I'm playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren't her eyes the most wonderful hue?
(lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).



The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
for children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep.



-- Author Unknown


I sit here and type with my baby in my sling. 

My two year old tornado is all calm and quiet, blissfully napping, resting up for the mischief that must be made this afternoon.

The older two are upstairs, curled up in their own beds with good books.

And the house is quiet. So I write.

This mama still has a whole lot to learn about balance...



There are 7 windows open in my browser--evidence of my struggle with focused, purposeful living. I wish I had time to do something with all the ideas that are in my head, but I don't. So I close them all, and sigh peacefully.

Babies don't keep...

Toddlers don't keep either, 

nor do four year olds (e-hem, "I'm almost five, Mom!"),

or six year olds.

Ideas come, and ideas go, and writing waits, and my children grow up.

I hear a little blond girl happily singing upstairs...is rest time really over?...and the thought that once made me frown makes me smile.

Yes, there is laundry to do, but she'll help me.

There is homemade granola to pull out of the oven, and homemade hot cocoa to drink--evidences that I am winning the battle against the thief.

And there are dishes to wash,

And supper to prepare,

And a baby in the sling,

And children to teach to love Him more than life itself.

Can I really be happy in this life, serving my God and my husband in my home, if nobody else notices or cares? If what I do here is never recognized, commended, or even valued by the world around me?

Yes, at last, 

I think that, maybe, 

I can.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Homeschooling the Precocious Preschooler

Question: My three-and-a-half year old daughter seems to be advanced for her age. She can already recognize most of her letters, and she’s begging me to give her “schoolwork” just like her older brother is doing.
I know a lot of homeschoolers say “better late than early”, and I don’t want to push her, but I don’t want to ignore her interests, either. Do you have any suggestions for beginning academic work for a young, but eager, preschooler?
Answer: I think many homeschooling parents struggle with when and how to start “doing school” with their younger children. We often hear conflicting advice from “the experts”. I’ve heard of programs designed to teach babies to “read”. On the other hand, there are folks who advocate waiting to begin any formal academics until children are 8, 9, or even 10 years old. We don’t know who to believe!
In my opinion, a lot of the confusion stems from cultural conditioning. Despite our separation from “the system”, we still, perhaps unwittingly, buy into some of its philosophy. The government school system tells us that Kindergarten begins in the September after which a child turns 5, and not a moment sooner. (If you’re child turns five on September 2nd, forget it!) However, the fact remains that readiness for school varies from child to child. I’ve met some 4-year-olds who are completely capable of doing “first grade” schoolwork, as well as 8 year olds who are still struggling with basic phonics skills.
All this to say that you know your child best. If your daughter is interested and excited to learn, don’t be afraid that you’ll somehow damage her by giving her schoolwork!
That being said, here are a few recommendations that I have for early academic work for the more “advanced” preschooler. These are ideas that have worked for us, but that doesn’t mean that they’ll work for everyone. 
I would encourage you to remember to keep it simple. Most early learning can be accomplished by reading out loud, especially the Bible, and playing, especially outside. Helping out with household tasks such as sorting laundry or measuring ingredients for a recipe are also great opportunities for learning. Do your best not to fill your child’s life with academics to the point of neglecting these other areas.
Also, please don’t spend a lot of money on a fancy phonics program or math manipulatives. With a child who is truly “ready”, they’re probably an unnecessary expenditure. Of course, if you already own some things that you’ve used for your older children, go ahead and give them a try. Otherwise, here are a few ideas for teaching the “Three R’s” that have worked for us:
Reading– “Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons” is my top pick for simplicity, effectiveness, and cost. It is my hands-down favorite phonics curriculum, and it is perfect for the precocious preschooler. I purchased my copy of the book on homeschoolclassifieds.com for less than $10. You may even be able to borrow a copy from your local library before you decide to buy. The best part is how it is designed to be done while snuggling with your child on the couch. I even teach reading while nursing the baby.
Writing– I purchased a dry erase alphabet practice book for about $5 at Wal Mart. It has letters to copy and is filled with colorful pictures. My daughter never tires of it, even though she is almost 5 and has been using it for 2 years. Just be sure to cover your little one’s clothing with a paint shirt or smock, as dry erase marker will not wash out!
Arithmetic– Math manipulatives are not hard to find if you are creative. We’ve had many a counting lesson while snacking on grapes! Almost any collection of little toys can be used as math manipulatives. I happened to find a set of colorful counting bears at a discount store for $3. Then, using a Magnadoodle as a “slate” (a la Laura Ingalls Wilder), my daughter would count out bears and write numbers. After a while, I began to write simple equations (e.g. 2+2=4) and have her build them with bears. In this way, she could do her own math lessons while her older brother was completing his.
So, there you have it! Pretty simple, huh? I hope you some of these ideas will work for you…but please don’t beat yourself up if they don’t. Every child is different! Remember, you’ve taught your child how to walk and talk and many other important things already! Ideally, you want learning to continue to be a relaxed and enjoyable experience for both of you.
Blessings to You on Your Journey!
Tiana
Monday, February 28, 2011

Spending Less Time On the Internet...

hasn't made me a better blogger, but it has made me a better mother.

I haven't written much, but I have baked more cookies,

read more books,

and caught up on the laundry in a way that might be called semi-permanent.

I've snuggled more, taught more, and argued less.

I'm thinking more clearly, and struggling less with the details of life.

It hasn't been easy, and there have been some days that I have failed. It's not as though I haven't had anything to write about...

...but other things have become more important. I certainly don't think I'm done writing, but I think I'm at a point of "less writing" until I can get some other areas of life into focus.

When I can write, I will. When I can't, I won't...and I won't hold it against myself. Perhaps, in this way, my writing will be more Spirit-led.

I'd love to share some of the things that God has been teaching me during this time, but it will have to wait.

It will have to wait.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A Valentine

Acacia received a Valentine from Grandma this week.


She read every word of it...


At least a dozen times...


She counted how many pretty flowers there were, and told me how the little girl in the picture looked "just like her"...except for the short hair...



Oh, that I might treasure God's love letter to me as dearly!!!

"Oh how I love your law!
It is my meditation all the day.

 Your commandment makes me wiser than my enemies,
for it is ever with me.

I have more understanding than all my teachers,
for your testimonies are my meditation.

I understand more than the aged,
for I keep your precepts.

I hold back my feet from every evil way,
in order to keep your word.

I do not turn aside from your rules,
for you have taught me.

How sweet are your words to my taste,
sweeter than honey to my mouth!

Through your precepts I get understanding;
therefore I hate every false way."

Psalm 119:97-104
Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Stricter Judgement

Every once in a while, I read an online article about homeschooling that annoys me.

Because articles like this one pop up every couple of months or so, (and frankly, because I doubt that they are written by anyone who is actually qualified to talk), I'm not going to do any linking, quoting or copying. However, allow me to attempt to paraphrase the thesis statement:

"Homeschooling your children is a big decision that should not be taken lightly. It is a lot of work, and it will completely change your lifestyle. Not everyone is cut out to homeschool, but if you are one of those amazing parents who 'has what it takes', congratulations to you and good luck!"

Why does this annoy me, you ask? Shouldn't parents "count to cost" before they build?

Of course, educating our children at home requires some forethought and planning. I won't dispute that. However, I think for a lot of people, there is a "mystique" about teaching that makes them believe that education is something that is best left to the "trained professionals".


"Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers,
for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness."
James 3:1

I've heard Christians use this passage to argue that not everyone is equipped to be a teacher, and that some people just don't belong doing it.

Maybe so, but there's one small problem with this line of thinking...

If you are a parent, you are already called to be a teacher, whether you like it or not.

Ouch.

"These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up."
Deuteronomy 6:6-7

You. That means parents.

Notice that Moses didn't give the people the option of sending their children off to a trained Rabbi if they didn't have the "gift of teaching". Nowhere does God institute a school system where the Hebrew children can get together for grade level instruction in the Book of the Law.

It was the parents' job. Period.

It's a lot like the professional ball player a few years back who told us all that he didn't think he was a role model and didn't want to be a role model.

Sorry. Too bad. You already are a role model...now, what are you going to do about it?


What am I going to do about it? Well, the only thing I know to do about it is to homeschool my kids, endeavoring to give them as close to a biblical education as possible.

But, maybe that's just me.
Saturday, February 5, 2011

How to Tear Down Your Own House...


"The wise woman builds her house,
But the foolish tears it down with her own hands."
Proverbs 14:1
Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Thief

"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.
I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."
John 10:10

There is a thief in my house...

A thief that robs me of my time...

It promises me peace, and happiness, and fulfillment...for a price.

It wants "just a minute...maybe 2...or 10,"
and then, the afternoon is gone.

Yes, there is a thief in my house.

It steals my energy and my joy, and leaves me with disconnected relationships and chaos.

It says to my precious children, "Not right now, sweetie, Mom's busy,"


It says of the housework, "That can wait,"

And it says to my dear, hard-working husband, "I'm afraid dinner will be late,"
and "Don't worry, I'll hand deliver that bill tomorrow,"
and, "I'm sorry...I forgot."


There's a thief in my house, and I've let it in.


That thief is the internet.


There, I said it.

But, here's the thing...


It doesn't have to be a thief.


If I can tame it...control it...master it rather than allowing it to have mastery over me,
it can be a very useful tool.


"'All things are lawful for me,' 
but not all things are helpful.
'All things are lawful for me,'
but I will not be enslaved by anything."
1 Corinthians 6:12

So, what's a mama to do?

If I'm going to be obedient to God in my responsibilities to Him, my family, and my home, while also continuing in this ministry I have of writing online, something has to change.

And so, I have new rules:

1. I will not turn on my computer in the morning before I have read my Bible.

2. I will do a general email check only twice per day--once in the morning, once at night. 15 minutes each. If a more lengthy response is needed to any messages, I will make a hand written note of it, and tend to it during afternoon rest time.

3. I will not go on Facebook unless the children are in their beds.

4. If I need to use the computer during the day (for example, to print out copywork or look at my checking account balance), I will do so without looking at other websites and will limit myself to 5 minutes. I will set my timer.

5. I will compose all blog posts on paper first, so I can be more involved with my children as I write. I will type out my blog posts during afternoon rest time, after bedtime, or first thing in the morning, before the children wake up.

6. Once rest time is over, I will shut down my computer until after the children are in bed for the night. (*Note: My husband leaves for work insanely early in the morning, and therefore, is usually in bed before the children. If he happens to be awake, this time belongs to him.)

7. Whenever possible, I will call a "real life" Titus 2 friend when I have a question before posting on a message board. I will think three times before entering online conversations. "Be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger." James 1:19

8. When I am overwhelmed, I will take a deep breath, take my supplements, and take my anxieties to the LORD. I will replace "escaping to the internet" with "prayer without ceasing".

OUCH. That was hard.

So, what does this mean to you?

Well, for one thing, it means you won't hear as much from me on Facebook. That's probably a good thing.

Hopefully it means I will actually be a better blogger. Writing things out longhand, combined with limiting my time "in front of the box", might mean that I'll write more and better content. So often, I sit down at the computer to write and end up spending an hour doing anything but writing.

So that's where I'm at. 

These rules may need some tweaking over the next few weeks, as I bring this area of my life into obedience to Christ, but it's a beginning.

By His Grace,

Tiana

P.S.--Do you have any internet "rules" for yourself? If so, what are they? I'd love to hear about them.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Snowed In!!--Molasses on Snow Candy

We're snowed in, and if the weatherman is right, we'll be snowed in for the next few days.

Little ones can get pretty stir crazy if they are cooped up indoors, so I've been busy coming up with ways to keep them busy...

 Today, we made Molasses on Snow Candy. You can find the recipe on page 192 of The Little House Cookbook by Barbara M. Walker. We decided to make a half-batch because we didn't have enough molasses in the house to make more.


Step one: Asher measured 1/2 cup dark molasses (i.e. all the molasses we had left in the house) into a liquid measuring cup.


Step two: We combined the molasses with 1/4 dark brown sugar in a 2 quart saucepan. (Don't use a smaller pan, the mixture needs room to boil). Stir the molasses and sugar together over medium heat, until it comes to a boil.


Continue to cook and stir the bubbly mixture for 5 minutes. Mixture is ready when a small amount dropped in a glass of cold water turns solid, like this:


This picture didn't turn out the greatest, but you get the idea...


Meanwhile, fill several cake pans with fresh, clean snow. This was Asher's favorite part!


You can store the pans outside until you're ready to poor the candy. Bring the pans inside--being careful not to dump snow all over the kitchen floor!--and set them on the table. We chose to cover the table with an old towel to catch any melting snow.


Drizzle the mixture into the snow, making whatever shapes you'd like!


We learned that you need to do this part rather quickly. If the molasses mixture cools, it becomes hard and stringy, and difficult to pour. When it hits the snow, the molasses will harden almost instantly, and become candy! We enjoyed some of it right away, and put the rest in the fridge to save for when daddy gets home.


Be sure to keep a wet washcloth handy, for all those little, sticky fingers...

HAVE FUN!!
Friday, January 21, 2011

Baby, It's Cold Outside

I got out of bed at 2:45 this morning, as I do most mornings, to pour my husband's coffee, pack his lunch, and send him off to work.

The world outside was dark, and my kitchen floor was cold. I could feel the icy air breaking into the house through the leaky door frame.

Chris joined me in the kitchen, and as he put on his coveralls, he called "the weather lady". He set the phone to "speaker", and put it on the counter.

"Good evening," she said (she never says "morning" until it is past the time at which reasonable people get out of bed), "the time is 3--05--temperature--negative--7".


Yikes. The coldest day of the season so far.


He kissed me good-bye, and I handed him his cooler.

"Keep those kids inside today, and try to stay warm..."


I sat on the couch to have my quiet time with the LORD, and then, I crawled back into bed to snuggle my sleeping baby for another hour or two before the rest of the world woke up.

As I drifted off to sleep, I got to thinking...

There are folks who think that, by homeschooling my children, I am being over-protective.

I've been told that my children need to be spending a great deal of time outside of my house, away from me, being exposed to people who think and believe differently than my husband and I do.

And I wonder...

--What would those same people think if I chose to send my children outside today, in the bitter cold, without the proper clothing?


--What if they weren't wearing a winter coat, and hat? No mittens? No snow pants? No heavy socks?  No waterproof boots?


--What if I sent them out after breakfast, and forbid them from coming inside until late afternoon?


--And what if, when questioned, I said that I did all this because I believed that they needed to be exposed to lots of cold air? That not to do so would be overprotecting them?


Would they agree with my logic, or would they implore me to shelter them inside, where it is warm? Would they not admonish me to wrap them up snugly in winter attire before sending them out next time?


The truth is, we live in a world that is cold and uncaring toward our children.


Sending little, fragile souls out into it alone, for long periods of time, without first giving them the covering of a thorough understanding of the Word of God is just as irresponsible as sending them out to play in below zero weather wearing shorts and a t-shirt.

"Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea."
Mark 9:42

The only real difference is one of time.

We see the effects of frostbite almost immediately.

...blue fingers, noses, and cheeks...Numb toes...that throbbing sensation...


When frostbite is severe, the results can be permanent. Some people feel pain in the affected areas of their bodies every time they are ever out in the cold again, for the rest of their lives. Some people even lose fingers and toes.


The effects of sending our children away from us, to secular caregivers, teachers, and institutions, are more subtle at first. We may not notice the results of the seeds of doubt that are planted in our children's hearts until much later in life, but we will see them. 75-88% of children raised in evangelical Christian homes walk away from Christianity by the time they reach their freshman year of college. Most of the time, permanently.

We reap what we sow.


So today, I'll keep my little ones indoors. I'll dress them in warm clothes, keep the furnace blowing, and feed them nutritious foods to grow their bodies healthy and strong. Another day, I'll wrap them in their winter outerwear and take them outside. I'll bring them back in before it gets to be too much, and I'll give them warm milk, mixed with honey, and cinnamon, and nutmeg to drink.

More importantly, I'll teach them the Bible. I'll teach them what we believe and why we believe it. I'll teach them about the issues of our day and age, at a level they can understand, and I'll teach them how to think critically about those issues. I'll teach them discernment.

I'll take my responsibility to teach, train, and prepare my children in the ways of the LORD seriously.

And when the cold wind blows, and the wolf comes howling at our door, by God's mercy, they will fear no evil, for He is with them.


And when they leave my house, and go out into the world, if I've done my job they will be strong and faithful, equipped for whatever the World and the Enemy may throw their way.

By His Grace,


Tiana
Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Praying for Little Ones

Last week, I was encouraged by my friends At The Well to pray more specifically and intentionally for my husband.
This new way of thinking and praying made a huge difference–in me!–and it got me to thinking about how God has been teaching me to pray for my children.
Life with preschoolers can certainly drive us to our knees. The question is, what are we praying? Are they surface level prayers? Are we pleading to God to just get us through the next 10 minutes?
One passage of Scripture that has helped me to pray for my children in a more focused way is Luke 2:52,
“And Jesus grew in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.”
Sunday–Their Salvation. We pray that our children would come to Jesus Christ as Savior through repentance and faith at the earliest possible age.
Monday–Their Education. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and understanding.” Proverbs 1:7. We pray that God would give us wisdom as we teach our children, and that they would eagerly receive instruction.
Tuesday–Their Physical Growth and Health. We pray that the LORD would continue to care for and protect our little one’s physical bodies, that they might be healthy and strong for His service.
Wednesday–Their Obedience. We pray that God would teach our children to obey and honor us, their parents, for His sake. (Ephesians 6:1)
Thursday–Their Relationships. We pray that our little ones would learn to love their neighbors, including those in their own household, as they love themselves. We pray that He would bless them with close, loving relationships within their families and the Body of Christ, and that He would teach them to show His love to those who do not know Him.
Friday–Their Protection. We pray that God would place his hedge of protection around our children, and that He would keep the Evil One far away from them.
Saturday–Their Purpose. None of us know what our children will grow up to be. We pray that God would use our children mightily in His Kingdom–that the would be His faithful, lifelong servants–and that He would make His calling on their lives clear to them.
**I noticed this morning, as I went to post this, that this week’s project At the Well is praying for our children! Their list is different, and definitely worth considering.**
By His Grace,
Tiana
Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A New Adventure

I am delighted to announce that, as of the beginning of this new year, I will be a regular contributor to At The Well: In Pursuit of Titus 2.







I really enjoyed writing a guest post for them a while back. My first post as an official contributor debuted this morning:

http://www.titus2atthewell.com/prayer-for-a-tired-mom/

Please hop over and pay them a visit!

One of the things I love so much about being "At The Well" is their commitment to encouraging and exhorting women in our roles as wives, mothers, and homemakers. I have been blessed and stretched by the series of weekly practical application projects they are doing each Monday in 2011:



Last week's challenge was to begin each day in the Word of God--a habit that, I confess, I fall in and out of routinely. It was a lot easier to do when I had only myself to care for. Now, there are six of us!

This week's challenge, however, has inspired me on a different level:


I know I don't pray for my husband enough. 

It's not that I don't think of him or care about him throughout the day, but sometimes I have a hard time focusing. I know I should pray, but too often, I don't know what to pray.

So, I took the prayer calendar from this post and put it in my sidebar. It will serve as a reminder to me, as well as to anyone else who'd like to join me in praying more intentionally and specifically for our husbands.

There are so many habits that I'd like to change and improve on in myself. It's tempting for me to get down on myself...to dwell on my shortcomings and allow them to paralyze me--but I'm not really the one who makes the change, am I? Christ is working in me to make it happen.

"for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure."
Philippians 2:13

 I am so thankful that God is not finished with me yet.

"Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you Only let us hold true to what we have attained."
Philippians 3:12-15


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Where to Start?--History with Preschoolers

I dare you.
Ask your preschoolers how old you are. Then, ask them how old grandma and grandpa are.
The answers you get will probably be quite amusing!
I remember when I was about three years old, asking my mother what life was like back when there was no color in the world. She gave me a perplexed look…and then, the light went on.
I had recently seen a old black-and-white movie on television. After we had discussed why there was no color in the movie, I had come to the ridiculous conclusion that the entire world was colorless when my mother was a child–and that God had only recently decided to paint our planet!
I’m sure you can tell similar stories about your own childhood–young children tend to have a warped perspective when it comes to time.
So how do we change that? How do we teach history in a way that will at all make sense?
It all depends on where you start.
Friday, January 7, 2011

Tax Breaks for Homeschooling Families--Carrot or Stick?

Photo courtesy of chatirygirl

With the election over, and the new year begun, it's time to send our representatives to Washington.

Some of our newly elected representatives may think they are doing homeschoolers a favor by giving us tax breaks.

Now, don't get me wrong...I love tax breaks! Don't we all?

However, "favors" almost always come with strings attached...

Strings that homeschoolers would prefer to do without, such as:

  • State involvement in curriculum choice,
  • Standardized testing (based on government school curriculum, of course),
  • Mandating that students who perform poorly on standardized tests be enrolled in public school,
  • Piles of paperwork, phone interviews, or even school official visits, to "prove" that we are homeschooling,
  • A general attitude of distrust that says, "We (the state) have given you so much. Now we expect a few things in return."
Would these kinds of things happen right away? Maybe, maybe not.

However, this is the kind of thing that can give the government a proverbial foot-in-the-door into our lives. If we don't see "sticks" like these show up immediately in "carrot" proposals, that doesn't mean they won't come. Should the LORD tarry, we will have elections again, and the next batch of representatives may not be nearly as sympathetic to homeschooling.

While it would be nice to keep more of our own money, we don't need it in the form of targeted tax cuts that will impose more regulation on homeschoolers.

Finding a way to curb out-of-control, wasteful spending on government education--now that would save everyone money! I can figure out a way to give my children a superb education without spending $9,000 per child per year...why can't the state?

For further reading on this subject, please visit:

SpunkyHomeSchool--Homeschoolers and Tax Breaks --she has some critical words for the Homeschool Legal Defense Association (HSLDA). This is an organization I respect, but it needed to be said. If you're a member of HSLDA, you especially need to read this and let them know what you think about it.

Wisconsin Parents Association (WPA): An Open Letter to Our Legislators --This is very well-written letter from my state's homeschool advocacy group. If you're from Wisconsin, WPA encourages you to print as many copies as you need and send them to your state elected officials. If you aren't up here with me, enjoying 14 degree weather (that's before the wind), please consider using this letter as a template, and writing your own letter.

By His Grace,


Tiana
Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Biblical Literacy for Preschoolers in 2011

Happy New Year!!
A photo taken by my sister, at Grandma and Grandpa's house, on Christmas Day. From left to right: Micah (2), Eliora (6 weeks), Tiana, Acacia (4), Christopher, Asher (6)

In 2011, many Christians, including myself, have decided that they are going to read through the entire Bible at least once. If you’re looking for a Bible reading plan to help you make that happen, check out YouVersion.
But, what about your preschoolers? Can you read the Bible, from cover to cover, to them?
Probably not–for a whole host of reasons–not the least of which being that many parts of the Bible aren’t exactly “G-Rated”. (Although, my friends At The Well presented a slightly different opinion this morning that still has me thinking.)
So what’s the solution? Allow me to introduce you to my favorite way to chronologically teach the Bible to young children.

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I'm a Stay-at-Home, Christian, "crunchy" mama. I have been blessed with the calling to be a godly wife and mother. I am passionate about bringing up my children in the discipline and instruction of the LORD, through home education and discipleship. Helpmeet to my best friend and soulmate, Christopher since 1/29/2000, and mama to four little blessings, including a tiny, precious, newborn baby girl.

My Writing Elsewhere...

Fixing Your Heart on Titus 2

Did you pray for your
husband today?
Monday--His Work
Tuesday--His Integrity
Wednesday--His Mind
Thursday--His Purpose
Friday--His Health
Saturday--His Protection
Sunday--His Faith

Carnival of Homeschooling

Carnival of Homeschooling
Features God Made, Home Grown

Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival

2009 Nominee!

2010 Nominee!

My Wired Style

My Wired Style
Success is not learned. It is discovered and nurtured. What was your child born to do?

Our Curriculum 2010-2011

Bible--Child's Story Bible by Catherine Vos, Apologia Biblical World View Book 1, "Who is God and Can I Really Know Him?"
Catechism-- "Training Hearts, Teaching Minds" by Starr Meade
Phonics--Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
(Kindergarten), Year 1 Booklist (1st Grade)
Handwriting--Bible Copywork, made using Educational Fontware
Spelling-- All About Spelling Level 1 (1st grade)
Math--Math-U-See Primer (Kindergarten) , Math-U-See Alpha (1st grade)
World History--Simply Charlotte Mason's Genesis Through Deuteronomy and Ancient Egypt
American History--The Light and The Glory For Children Series
Art--Interest-led projects and handicrafts
Geography and Missions-- "Hero Tales" by Dave and Neta Jackson, as well as various other missionary biographies, incorporating globe and map study
*We will be studying music and phy-ed., participating in a writing club and nature club, as well as attending various field trips, with our church's homeschool group.*

Disciple Like Jesus

Disciple Like Jesus

Raising Homemakers

Raising Homemakers

Quiverfull Family

The Modest Mom

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