Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Why I Will Not Be Viewing "Mom's Night Out" The Movie

Disclaimer: I haven't seen this movie, so I am basing my opinions from just this video but I have opinions. 

I will not be seeing this movie, unless someone out there can convince me why I should.

I'm excited that it was made by two homeschoolers. I am excited that it ends in positive messages about mom's being appreciated for the hard work they do, often without break, always without pay, day in and day out.

Yet, I will not be seeing this (unless someone can change my mind) for the same reason why I HATE Berenstain Bears books. I vehemently disagree with the portrayal of husbands and fathers being the stupid guy, the incompetent guy, the guy who can not control his own children and gets into mishaps that we are supposed to laugh at. I detest the portrayal of others as idiots merely to elevate another's worthiness. I find this common and oft popular practice disrespectful and something I neither want to emulate nor visually see portrayed or reinforced.

No, fathers and husbands are not moms and wives. They are quite different than moms and wives. The often run their ships very differently. They think and act and react differently. Sometimes they don't know how to do something. Sometimes they do things in a way that seems to make no sense to us and the way we do things. Sometimes when I return from my weekend at work it takes me time to put things back to where I want things and time to find the kitchen tools I am looking for.

Perhaps there are dads that DO look like these dads, but I would argue they are likely in the minority. Perhaps this might have boded true back in the 1950's when there was a more complete separation between the WIFE'S duties and the MAN'S duties.

For the most part I can not think of a single father with younger kids who would not be able to handle one evening alone with their children. I'm sure there are a couple out there but I don't know any and I'm pretty sure the guys I know are pretty normal and not infused with any Super Hero Mr. Mom Gene, although I'm sure there might be a few guys out there that are.

Why do we (as society) have to fully bash something in order to show merit in something else? Why can't the guys be competent AND come to realize their wives are absolutely amazing? Furthermore, why are the wives not appreciating that the men do have to go off to work day in and day out to jobs they likely hate and would rather NOT go to? Why do we not address the fact that both the men AND the women might be responsible for these children being out of control and for the men to be terrified and ignorant about how to take care of them for a single evening out?

OH RIGHT!! That wouldn't make the target audience laugh or feel better about themselves and their lives. It would not affirm and tell them they indeed are the victims and are taken advantage of by their husbands who don't do anything, or CAN'T do anything. It certainly wouldn't pull in audiences that would make the studios money.

Nope! I won't be seeing it.

Furthermore, I LOVE YOU DANIEL from the bottom of my heart. There are days where I am absolutely wigged out by the time you awaken after sleeping off your night shift but I LOVE YOU. There are times where I am just tired of everyone and everything and you get to see my Ms. Hulk-Cranky Side. When I am away at work, you put dishes away in very weird places and rarely notice how dirty the floor is. Our devised management of our kitchen paper catching counter, with my half of the cluttered counter and your half of the cluttered counter seems to never be clean, but works ......YET YOU ARE COMPETENT, YOU LOVE OUR CHILDREN, THEY OBEY AND RESPECT YOU, THEY LOVE YOU, YOU ARE GOOD TO US ALL, YOU PROVIDE FOR US IN MORE WAYS THAT I WOULD LIST HERE, AND YOU RARELY COMPLAIN ABOUT ALL THE THINGS YOU FIND CRAPPY IN THIS WORLD. You make me a better person, even when I often HATE when you are doing it! Thank you for influencing me enough over our 18 years of marriage that I no longer find such films (nor The Berenstain Bears) humorous!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Kristi's Notes: The Discipline of Grace

I've been crawling through the book The Discipline of Grace: God's Role and Our Role in the Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges. (Crawling because I have trouble reading anything unless it is totally quiet.... which NEVER happens when I have enough energy to hold my eyes open long enough to read.)

Grace has been a reoccurring theme, woven throughout many aspects of my life, lately.  Yet, being disciplined, in a non-legalistic way, has also been arising as well.  I have read a bit on God's Grace a very long time ago and I know the two "discipline" and "grace" appear to be opposites but are in reality two parts of a greater whole.

Sections of the first chapter have just jumped off the page waving at me like brilliant flags.  I wanted a place to share them.  I encourage you to pick up the book, but if you don't have time, can't find it, or simply want the "Kristi's Notes" version feel free to read on.   Much of it is directly quoted from his book.

Let me also warn you if you want to know more you might actually HAVE to go get a copy of the book since it is summer ball season, gardening season, we are summer schooling, and I seem to only remember to log onto my blog a few times a year lately.  That *might* change.  We shall see.  I can't promise I will actually get back here to tell you about chapter 2.  The book is old and likely sells for pennies on used book sites.

Here are some notes.... Oh, and you all will have to forgive me because I will be typing snippets with very little explanation or segue from one to another.  (Why? Cause I'm excited but tired and don't want to spend a week in "compose" mode... OH!!, and it's my blog and I don't hafta!  I know, I know!  It'll LOOK BETTER if I do.....but currently I just want to give you the snippets!)

p13:  "An understanding of how grace and personal, vigorous effort work together is essential for a lifelong pursuit of holiness."
p17: "Regardless of our performance, we are always dependent on God's grace, His undeserved favor to those who deserve His wrath."
p21: "Without a continual reminder of the good news of the gospel, we can easily fall into one of two errors.  The first is to focus on our external performance and become proud like the Pharisees.  The second is the exact opposite of the first.  It is the feeling of guilt."
p.22: "Because we are focusing on our performance, we forget the meaning of grace: God's unmerited favor to those who deserve only His wrath.  Pharisee-type believers unconsciously think they have earned God's blessing through their behavior.  Guilt-laden believers are quite sure they have forfeited God's blessing through their lack of discipline or their disobedience.  Both have forgotten the meaning of grace because they have moved away from the gospel and have slipped into a performance relationship with God.
p24: "Years ago I heard a godly minister say, 'Discipline without desire is drudgery.'"
p24-25: "What compelled or motivated Paul in such a strong manner was not a continual challenge to be more disciplined, or more committed, or more holy.  Rather it was his constant heartfelt awareness of Christ's love for him. It was not the thought that "I ought to do this or that" or a feeling of guilt for not doing something that motivated him. Rather it was his overwhelming sense of Christ's love for him that spurred him on. . . . Duty or guilt may motivate us for awhile, but ONLY a sense of Christ's love for us will motivate us for a lifetime. If the love of Christ for us is to be the motivating force for a life of discipleship, how then can we come to the place where we are actually conscious of His love?  The answer is, through the message of the gospel. As we continually reflect upon that gospel, the Holy Spirit floods our hearts with a sense of God's love to us in Christ. And that sense of His love motivates us in a compelling way to live for Him. . . .  A sense of obligation and duty NEVER stimulates such a desire within us.  Only love does that."

***Kristi side note: That last quote is SO POWERFUL to me.  It has been my clinging to my basic tenets of faith and the hard to believe message of love behind the cross and resurrection that have pulled me through some of my biggest struggles.  We *do* because we feel so loved we can't possibly imagine sitting without doing something. ***
p25-26: "Preaching the gospel to ourselves every day addresses both the self-righteous Pharisee and the guilt-laden sinner that dwell in our hearts. . . it reminds us that we ARE indeed sinners in need of God's grace.  Perhaps more importantly, though, preaching the gospel to ourselves every day gives us the joy (... of the risen Lord), gives us courage to face the day, and offers us hope that God's favor will rest upon us, not because we are good, but because we are in Christ."
p26: "Repentance is one of the Christian's highest privileges.  A repentant Christian focuses on God's mercy and God's grace."
p27."May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ." (Galatians 6:14)

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

5 Questions to Ask Your Children at the End of the School Year

These questions are not original to me.  I've never thought about asking my kids any questions at the end of the school year.  Perhaps I am just thankful to be done.  Perhaps, since we loosely school all year round I don't even really *feel* like there is an *end of the year.*  I am currently in the middle of prepping and kicking off our Summer Units while pulling my hair out because I can't find a solid middle of the road US History Survey curriculum for next fall.  Then there is that stupid whispering voice in me which I enjoy punching back into place that says "My mom-hood is just not amazing enough to do such things."

Regardless of why I've never thought to do this, I think these are great questions.  I got them from The Homeschool Post from this post.   Mine arrived in my inbox, I'm lazy like that.

These questions are great.  They are great for ALL STUDENTS EVERYWHERE, not just homeschoolers.   I think I might have us write out the answers and stash them into our work folders for this year.   I could see other parents writing out the answers and stowing them away with those report card things that come home with the children.

And then I hope that at the end of NEXT year someone reminds me to do it again.   :)

Here are the 5 questions:

What is the most memorable moment from this past year?

What are you most happy about accomplishing this year?

What was your favorite book this year and why?

What five adjectives would you use to describe this year?

What are your top three favorite or most important things you learned this year?

Aren't those great?    A great way to allow THEM to do a final assessment of their hard, grueling, emotion provoking year.   (Maybe those would be my three adjectives, lol.)

What do ya think?

Do you do any year end assessment like this or do you merely throw the notebooks into a "keepsake box" (or the trash) and move onto the fun of summer?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

If I Stand

A lot has been going on in my life since I was last here.

I have missed blogging very much and thought I might start a post here or there again.

Maybe someday I will even let you know some of what's been going on since last Fall when I posted last.

Today, I just want to share some lyrics with you.

Lyrics from the most inspirational singer to my life.

Here are the lyrics to "If I Stand" with a link to RICH HIMSELF playing and singing it for us on April 11, 1997, the year he died.   Man, I miss you Rich.

If I Stand

There's more that rises in the morning
Than the sun
More that shines in the night
Than just the moon
There's more than just this fire here
That keeps me warm
In a shelter that is larger
Than this room
There's a loyalty that's deeper
Than mere sentiment
A music higher than the songs
That I can sing
The stuff of earth competes
For the allegiance
I owe only to the giver
Of all good things
So if I stand let me stand on the promise
That You will pull me through
And if I can't let me fall on the grace
That first brought me to You
If I sing let me sing for the joy
That has bornin me these songs
But if I weep let it be as a man 
Who is longing for his home
There's more that dances on the prairies
Than the wind
More that pulses in the ocean
Than the tide
There's a love that is fiercer
Than the love between friends
More gently than a mother's 
When her baby's at her side
Repeat Chorus

More lyrics: http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/r/rich_mullins/

And then I accidentally flipped onto another video from the same performance in Wheaton.  He had just put down a milk shake and then said,"They always say you should never drink milkshakes before you sing.  And I didn't.  I just think that morning is worse than a milkshake and if I had my options I'd rather be hoarse because of a milkshake than because of morning.  If you want to know the whole truth about it.   (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjP7A8Jp9vI)

Monday, September 3, 2012

Prepping Preschool 2012

As I prepare to teach my 3 & 5 year olds letter recognition and letter order this year I thought it was time to find some new activities. As I was prepping these new activities I thought I would share what I found.

First, I FINALLY finished gluing the rest of our letter tiles for All About Spelling.
You can read about how I made these tiles here.  To be honest with you, I feel the magnets are actually TOO strong but in lieu of doing the ENTIRE project all over again I decided to just continue on and make them all now so we are ready to work our way up to level 5 with all the tiles that we need.

Second, I found these cute letter matching frog alphabet puzzles.  
 I plan on keeping the Capitol and Lower Case letters attached for the moment.  When I know that my two littles KNOW all their letters when they are paired THEN I will cut them apart.  So for now my plan is to give them the letters A-D in all the colors and have them sort the cards into piles by letter.  When they can do the whole alphabet in the right order (or maybe before) then I will cut them apart.  I made them in colors so that I can easily pull out one whole alphabet.  I might cut one alphabet apart so they can match upper case A with lower case A and leave the other colors to be grouped together.   (I dunno... when they are THIS young I kind of fly by the seat of my pants.  The important thing is that 1)they can continue being kids 2)they are learning and 3)they don't hate school.

Third, I found a Bingo sort of game.   It's called Letter Sound Lotto.
You can download the sample (which seems pretty complete) HERE.
I just found this site and they seem to have many fun and free downloads.  :)

Where do you go to get free preschool practice games?
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