Tuesday, June 30, 2009
As an aside: I visited Kirtsy tonight. First time I've ever been there and I still don't really have a clue what it's all about, but I found a creative soul I like. And what she describes in this post makes what I'm doing not look quite as crazy... and I think it's pretty darn cool.
Check out this super creative and gusty gal here.
Monday, June 29, 2009
"She was too small to read a clock, and although telling her to look for a "6" was an option, she didn't quite get it that 5 was not OK, but 7 was. I was looking for a simple "yes/no" cue that did not require her to do too much thinking if she were to wake up in the middle of the night. I did not want to set an alarm, because I didn't want to disturb her sleep if she were to sleep in.
My hack inspiration came from an electrical appliance timer. I used it to rig her night light to turn off at 6am and told her she was to stay quiet and in her room until the light turned off. After a minor setback when she turned off the light manually to make it "time to get up," it has worked like a charm!"
Saturday, June 27, 2009
I am in love.
I have found an alternative to my favorite swaddling blanket.
Yes, there are other products out there like this, but they're marketing this one so much better, don't you think? The cool factor is through the roof... except for the weird name... and I can't get enough of the snazzy prints these swaddlers come in.
$60 isn't too much to pay for something you'll use every nap and every night for months, is it? What's the cost per use? Like... a few cents?
Here's the link to my favorite print: http://www.babybonkie.com/Sailor-PID100-GID4-MID65.aspx
And here's a pic of one of these in action:
Friday, June 26, 2009
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Saturday, June 20, 2009
I'll share just a few things in this chapter that resonated with me.
In regards to my concern that grace is an excuse for lazy parenting with no boundaries, Dr. Kimmel says:
"...grace does not lower the standards in our homes; it raises them. It doesn't push people away from holiness; it pushes thim toward it. It doesn't cause them to despise truth; it propels them to embrace truth all the more. It encourages people to aim higher in their relationship with God and helps them dream bigger dreams."
Wow. Others focused and not inward focused. Confident and not fearful. That's how I want to raise my children.
Friday, June 19, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Gaaah! I've got the music channel on, been listening to the Contemporary Christian channel all morning. I just finished reading all this really phenomenal and tear-producing stuff about parenting. My heart is so soft toward Eden right now... and what song comes on?? Butterfly Kisses by Bob Carlisle! So now I'm trying not to bawl. Geez Louise! Gimme a break!
Ok, got through the song... Let me put my glasses back on. Onward.
The biggest theme of this first chapter that I sooooo needed to hear was that all the decisions we make as parents ultimately won't matter when we look ahead to the adult our child will become and the choices they will make without us if those decisions are based in fear. So that means that if I home school, require modest clothing, spank, lead my kids to Christ at an early age, teach manners, don't allow my kids to date, and whatever other ultra-do-good things you can think of... those decisions, although some would consider them wise and even Bible mandated, will not, I repeat, NOT produce the adult I was aiming to produce by doing all those things IF my child-rearing decisions are based in fear. That's the key. The "heart reason" behind all these seemingly honorable choices in child-rearing is what really makes the difference.
This is so hard for me to swallow, because every fiber of my being screams that "grace" is just a Christianized way to say "lazy, lax, and boundary-less." And why wouldn't a child with all these aforementioned boundaries naturally be better off as an adult. They will have avoided so much pain. They will have made (with plenty of guidance, aka. control) such good choices... Ok, crying again... glasses off... just a minute. Alright back to this.
They will have so much less emotional and spiritual baggage that all the people who went through public school, dressed less modestly, weren't "properly" disciplined, came to Christ as a teen, and dated around will. RIGHT?? What am I supposed to do? just let Eden make mistakes, get hurt and have a testimony of how God brought her back from the pain in her past? NO. I still don't believe my child's story has to be one of pain and mistakes to be real or effective.
Here's what I'm learning. Rules, even if they are God's rules, can only affect the outside. You need grace and love to affect the heart. The heart/Spirit is what I want changed in my children because that is what will take them through life. They need a heart-purpose, attitude and compass to take them into the world they will live in. In order to minister to the lost (our WHOLE purpose here), they will have to go to where they are. My life right now.. and my parent's life, by the way, pretty much consists of a Christian bubble. Christian bookstores, Christian music, Christian education, Christian friends... all good things, except if we have nothing else to show when we get to heaven. Can you see me now? "But God, I raised my kids right. I only fellowshipped with other Christians. I only watched movies rated highly by Christian sites. I only listened to Christian radio, jazz, classical and oldies. Aren't you proud, God?"
Once again, the fearfulness in me screams, "So I'm supposed to surround myself with secularism, not bat an eye at an R rated film, and go witness to folks in brothels?!" Well, maybe to the last one.
It's a huge struggle for balance within me that I can see isn't going to end any time soon. The main thing is to let the main thing be grace not fear. Right now, if you asked me why I don't want to send Eden to public school, my answer would start with, "because I'm afraid that..." If you asked me why I don't think Eden should date, my answer would say a lot about all the unhealthy, unnecessary stuff I think can be avoided, but once again, my motivation is fear. Until my decisions are not motivated by fear, but by God impressing on my heart that this is His way for His child, they won't amount to a hill of beans.
I could go on, but I won't. I need to think. I need to pray. I need prayer. I need help. I need grace. I need God. That is clear.
I'm completely convinced that we need to get the Your Baby Can Read system (www.yourbabycanread.net) for Eden and the newest addition. I saw the infomercial a while ago and was intrigued, but skeptical. I just saw a new infomercial for it late last week and was completely convinced that Eden would benefit greatly from this system. I'm strongly considering homeschooling and this just seems like a first natural step. Besides, she LOVES books! She "reads" them aloud to herself already. I want to give her the gift of really being able to read the words on the page. She loves to have a book in the car, she looks at books during her playpen time and frequently asks to be read to throughout the day. She will LOVE to read! The only obstacle is the price. It's not so much that we don't have the money, it's just deeming the program worthy of the money it requires. I think we'd be getting a deal since we'll educate two for the price of one. If any decisions are made, I'll post about them.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
We talked without breaking into tears, which is an accomplishment. We talked without defensiveness and without suspicions of hidden meanings. We talked with intent to listen and learn about each other. We didn't understand each other perfectly or totally agree on everything, but we both expressed the desire to continue the dialogue that will be our road to growing our relationship.
Monday, June 08, 2009
Because we liked the movie so much, we decided then and there to add it to our small, but growing collection of Blu-ray discs... sometime in the future. We talked openly at my parents' about how we thought it would be a great, wholesome kids film, and, mainly because of the dog, Doug and the bird, Kevin, we thought Eden would really like to watch it. Just like anything anyone says when they think of it first off, we reevaluated after we got home and decided that she definitely couldn't sit through a whole movie in a theater yet, and that there were too many scary scenes with mean dogs and the bird getting hurt, etc. All in all, not a great idea for her to see it yet. Just another one on our list along with Wall-E and others that she'll enjoy someday.
I got an email today. I want all opinions from other moms with moms to balance my perspective here please. The email I got was from my concerned mother about why it wasn't a good idea for us to let Eden see UP. She copied an excerpt from a Baby Center article about how a child under 3 doesn't have the ability to focus long enough for a full-length movie. Then she continued with the concerns her and my dad had about the scary scenes and other stuff too. At the end, she capped it off with how much she trusts God and us with Eden and knew we would do the right thing.
I was bristly after reading it. She couldn't possibly know that Chuck and I had already thought through all that, but I guess I would have appreciated her just putting out a feeler question... "Are y'all still thinking of taking Eden to see UP?" Then she wouldn't have had to stress about all her issues and would have been able to hear that it wasn't even a question with us any more. Am I being too touchy that she just sent me this email of admonishment? I really like the fact that they were involved parents while I was growing up and had something to say (Biblically) about every aspect of life we, as a family, encountered. This email is pretty much just an extension of that... a continuance. And I wish now that it wouldn't continue so much. I don't want to shun the wisdom offered from my parents...
I just want to ask for it first.
What do you think?