Friday, April 23, 2010
123 Bomb Pops from the ice cream man.
124 The Ice Cream Man
125 Neighborhood where I can send him to the coner to wait for Ice Cream Man.
126 Change to spare to send with kiddo for the ice cream
127 The grattitude in his voice when he says thanks.
128 That yummy flavor in the middle.
129 The Bluebonnet Swamp, we saw no less than 4 snakes in the wild,
numerous wild animals & cypress trees abundant.
130 Little boys to stuff candy eggs.
131 Friends with whom to share candy eggs.
132 Simple treasures.
133 Big Smiles.
I'm counting today because it points the way to the bounty in my life. If I were to focus on the complications, I would miss the goodness that is around me. This Easter was the mark on the Christian calendar of the Resurrection of Christ, and also the first Sunday Henry had felt like himself in about 2 weeks.
April was a blur, but with thanksgiving we've completed so much in regard to our upcoming move. I have a couple of more pictures to share from our recent trip to the river. So in the midst of seeming chaos, I'll probabaly post one more time, from Louisiana, and then hope for internet connection at our new house in the woods.
Counting along with many others over at A Holy Experience with Ann Voskamp.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Say that 3 times fast.
I found a copy of Bennetts' combined Books, the Virtues, Heroes, & Americans for $3 at a thrift store. I'd been eyeing it on-line. Yippee. Good stuff in those books. We own 'virtue' but wanted the other 2.
I also have recently acquired, Raising Real Men. Good read. First chapter is on real heroes. Bennett's chapters about Heroes are excellent. A real compliment to the ideas expressed in this first chapter of 'RRM'.
Tv's unplugged. Life is good.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
... can be a little long. Sometimes, its even temporary. More soon but let's just say, in 2 weeks, I'll be packing up my hopes and dreams & driving them north from our home in the bayou. The road is uncertain, but we're confident it involves lots of fresh air, nature walks, homeschool on the porch & fresh vegetables, come summer.
This Tiger's got a new Dawg House.
If I'm a little off the radar, stay with me, I'm planning to put to use many of the wonderful ideas I've been gleaning from friends - Thy Hand, Homestead Revival, and oh so many more. Give a girl a Fig ...just to name a few. So many blog world friends, so many everyday friends, how blessed I am.
A few blessings to recall just this week
#106 Nana- who's fed us, slept us, rocked the boys, told stories, encouraged us.
#107 Heidi- who shared her home & cared for us all.
#108 A husband who digs in & makes it happen.
#109 My car that runs safely & effieciently.
#110 The internet to help me do extremely effective searches for houses.
#111 Real estate agents who just want to help. Even if they're not going to make a buck.
#112 Friends far & near, who I'll either see more, or miss so much.
Counting today, on the way to my homestead, but because my meds never end. #22
Join in the gratitude community over at A Holy Experience. Every Monday folks are counting.
Monday, April 5, 2010
Our Egg Hunt was precious. We sure enjoyed being with everyone. Jack and Henry enjoyed being with some of their friends and had a ball despite the rain.
May your spring be blessed ~ Laura
Jack is tallest boy & Henry is between 2 sweet girls in pink dresses.
Friday, April 2, 2010
As I continue to work my way through 7 Habits of a Highly Effective Family, I'm faced with areas of weakness in my personal approach to life & parenting. I've also seen my strengths, and oh I feel very comfortable in these, but balance is the key. Balance.
I like lists, I could memorize anything growing up, I kept a notebook of to-do's in highschool. But my kids don't seem to follow list, one of them is just learning to read, so I've had to actually learn how to parent and not just write it on the board like a teacher would. I'm great at banging chalk on a board. I'm being a little silly here, but I'm reeling from the knowledge that modeling a behavior is the most effective way to teach something. Example. Discipling. Modeling.
Strength's first. When I read the section about each person's 4 gifts - Self Awareness, Conscience, Imagination, & Independent Will. I realized I have a strong moral compass(conscience). That doesn't mean I always do what's right, it means I have a clear & strong gut feeling accompanied by a clear & strong perception of right & wrong. I can perceive 'stink' a mile away. My approach may also stink as to it's correction, but my detection of it is unparalelled.
Now to my weaknesses. I am, like others, often able to see the flaw in another, but not so quick or oblivious to my own issues- self-un-aware. I often get short-circuited on the way to visualizing (imagining)how a situation could be different & miss the opportunity for an exponential win-win occasion for myself & my family. I often forsake responsiblity of utilizing my independent will to fight whatever force, within my family or without that is working against a good plan.
In reading this in context of the 7 Habit's definitions from the book of 'win-win' and the 4 gifts, as well as considering the importance of unconditional love, I am convicted to consider how important Habit 5 is.
Habit 5 - Seek to understand before being understood. I can see this with my husband and other adults, but wow, this is pushing all sorts of buttons with my relationship with my kids. This means I have to consider their position, point of view. Even when I can see with my trusty moral compass their transgression. Aghast! But this doesn't jive with all of my 'rules'. My 'lists'. Can't they just look at the lists? No, its a process of understanding them, whether it is their limitations, their abilities, & their perceptions. I can have all the 'higher' hopes & plans I want but unless I love not just in higher ideal but in deed & understanding. Gentle, slow, time investing, verb-like love. Patient, kind, longsuffering. Correcting, admonishing,and chastising.
Enter 4 gifts.
For instance, I might consider with my self-awareness that I'm inconsistent in my parenting behavior, whether it is in delivering a consequence, or it's allowing something one day then, the next without explanation or communication disallowing it, or even worse punatively shaming a child for wanting it. Eek! Say for instance reading up on tv or video games & jumping overboard and not explaining why we will be limiting if not altogether eliminating it. And worse not providing an outlet that will compensate for the mental stimulation they're suddenly missing.
But before I 'pull the plug', I might use my gift of imagination to picture (realistically) what will happen(their sheer terrororizing reaction to lack of tv) & creatively & proactively with my gift of independent will to plan for the time/void created. My gift of conscience that has absorbed every ounce of information about the negative effects of tv on a child's imagination, not withstanding the dumbing down of their moral compass, will guide me to be strengthened when I choose to do what I know in my heart that is simply the better road. Not always the easier road.
I don't think lists like '15 behaviors never to ignore' from books as serious as 'Raising a Non-Violent Child' should be overlooked or not even studied. But they must be tempered with knowledge from books like 7 Habits of a Highly Effective Family & Praising Boy's Well, and considered in the light of an increasing problem of 'Boy's Adrift'. The factor of balance must be solidified in a parents heart, because there will often be conflicting information in the world of advice from books & institutions who specialize in guiding parents. This article is an excellent example of this conflict. I am typical parenting product of this conflict between 2 very different camps, often described as post-modern psychology & old-fashioned parenting.
I would say sometimes I find author's such as Rosemond lacking in something in the 'listening'/understanding department. However I personally think I'd lean in favor of his methods, because of the marked difference & successful outcomes he can reference.
One take-away in Rosemond's book 'Making the Terrible Twos Terrific', a paradigm with Biblical foundations of Proverbial proportion are an excellent framework of principles to live by.
'Management versus Punishment
Proactivity vesus Reactivity
Consistency versus Unpredictability
Communication versus Confusion '
Even in this passage, one can see that communication (listening, understanding) is a part of a bigger equation. I think the discrepancy has to do with the credibility that is given to a child's every whim or emotional outburst. This is where I feel 'pinch' between the 2 schools of thought the most. Is the parent in charge, will the child ever have respect for authority? What is the parent's perception of authoritiy in the light of God's expectations of a parent. How does a parent reflect Godly patience, chastisement & longsuffering?
A recent popular book, 'Nurture Shock' that steps up to the plate regarding failure of post-modern psychology, and has been said to provide the statistics that Rosemond has not, although their ideas often align very well.
Another book, 'Parenting, Your Highest Calling, and 8 other Myths' also takes issue with the overboard, fixation parents like myself, & of my generation have developed.
Another book, that I am beginning to read is 'Educating the Whole-Hearted Child'. Foundational in its approach to the Christian Homeschool Family. I have found that this book is an essential style tool for filling the void, proactively addressing what you actually want your children to learn & embody. It's not a half-way approach. It doesn't allow for an ecclectic approach. It sees one way, a Godly way to approaching children and their rearing. It doesn't equate ecclectic with balanced.
You may ask, when does this woman actually parent? She's always reading?
Yes, that must be balanced too, modeled. I must not let my proactive information seeking foster derail consistency in our schedule. Modeling reading is great, but all in good measure.
All of the books mentioned above can be found on amazon.com. I do believe 'Making the Terrible Twos Terrific' is out of print. It has however evolved itself into other books that he has written. I wouldn't spend time tracking it down when other books of his would be comprehensively address that specific issue.