Category Archives: Uncategorized

Our Children: Prayer Warriors

Have you ever struggled to learn to pray?

Is your prayer time just a list of asking God for things?

Do you know how to communicate with God through prayer?

Do you know how to learn to love Him more through prayer?

I have been a Christian for 30 years, and still struggle with every one of those items.  I am just now learning how to pray scriptures to the Lord.  I am just now learning how to try and listen for God’s voice and words.  It has been a struggle my entire life to learn these skills.

I want better for my girls.

I am excited to have found a 4 week curriculum to teach my girls Prayer Warriors  Teaching Kids to Talk to God.

Are you, or your church ministry looking for just such a curriculum?  Check this one out. You can get this four week study for just $75.00.  It will give kids a foundation in prayer and communicating with God.

Teach your kids how to pray.*

Prayer is a conversation with God. It is not about saying the right words; it’s about speaking from your heart then listening to what God has to say.

What could be worth more than that?

 

*Quote from Children’s Ministry Deals

Disclaimer:  All opinions on here are my own except where credit is given.  I was given a copy of the curriculum in exchange for this review, but the thoughts expressed are my own.

You’re An Old Lady

Please come visit me over at ProjectSemicolon today.

“Was that game fun Patrice?”
“Not by myself.”
“Do you want me to play it with you?”
“You’re a grown up.”
“But I can still play.”
“No, You’re too old.”

And just like that, I was summarily dismissed from playing Let’s Go Fishing…

With My Cup of Tea

I sit reading, cozy in my bed.  I am transfixed by the stories I am reading, the tragedies being described for me.  I am reading about the Dalits of India.  They are the lowest of the lowest on the caste system.

The caste system in India has been around for about 3,000 years.  It is based on the Hindu belief that people are ranked according to their sins in a past life; the Dalits are those considered to have lived the worst of the lives in their previous life so have come from underneath the Hindu god.  Those in higher castes are said to have come from his arms or head, obviously better because they come from a higher part of their gods’ body.

Dalits are considered lower than the animals.  They are given the most demeaning jobs, ie cleaning out the latrine with their bare hands.  The caste system has been outlawed, deemed unconstitutional, but much like segregation was here in America, the law is ignored and the Dalits are still oppressed,

Oft times, the families are so poor they end up abandoning or selling children, just to try and survive.  Many are sold into the sex trade, or modern day slavery.  Girls, and boys, in this situation have a life expectancy of 15 years.

That data would make my beloved oldest daughter, Caitlyn, middle aged.  I cannot imagine her experiencing such torture, such hell.  I cannot imagine having, as a parent, to choose food over one son or daughter so at least some of your family might live.

What an impossible choice and excruciating situation.  All because you were born a Dalit.  The government has implemented a version of affirmative action to hold so many jobs in the upper levels for the Dalits, but many Dalits cannot afford an education, to learn what they need, to move up in their society.

It is a difficult situation, all the way around.

Many of the Dalits are finding freedom by leaving Hinduism and going to other religions, such as Christianity and Islam.  There they are told all are equal and they can have mental and spiritual freedom.

Some have found this new freedom, but there are so many more.  Won’t you join me in praying for the Dalits and their quest for freedom and equality?

 

*Information taken from Dalit Freedom Now and Forever by Joseph D’Souza and No Longer a Slumdog by K.P. Yohannan

Trimming the Grocery Bill

Okay people, I really need feedback on this post.  I want to cut our grocery bill significantly.  I have seen it come down by buying flour in bulk and storing it.  Making waffles and pancakes from scratch and my own Jiffy/Bisquick mix.

Now I am looking for more.

What do you buy boxed?  Anything?

What do you make from scratch?  Everything?

What do you buy in bulk?

Do you meal plan?  If yes, how do you think that saves you money?  Do  you cook according to sales?

What tips and hints do you have to pass on?

We have no special food requirements.

A Favorite Song

This is a test, but I might as well share a favorite with you, right?

Going Against the Grain

My girls and I went out in public, during the day, twice this week.    Why is that in any way noteworthy?  All schools in our state have now started holding classes.  Most of what you see at the grocery store at one in the afternoon is either the moms or caregivers with young children or the senior citizen crowd enjoying relative peace now that the droves have returned to school.

But we’re still out there.  Feeling nervous that people are judging us, nervous that I should keep the girls at home during brick and mortar school hours. Just a little skittish. Caitlyn felt a little of that last year, but honestly, she was proud to be homeschooled.  She and Sue decorated shirts that said as much for when we went out in public.

So, what happens when you take your kids out during the hours they are “supposed” to be in school?  Mostly quizzical looks.  And many people venturing to say, “oh, did you guys have a half day?”  I just smile as I say, “we homeschool, it gives us a little more flexibility,” while I wonder if there will be more comments coming.  There rarely is.

Today, the lady at the bank, who was getting to pass out free pens, good thing, without their freebies I would have none, was very friendly to people as they asked her where stuff was in the grocery store her branch is located in.  I don’t know if she has learned the general locale of items intentionally or she just shops there, but she was able to point them to where they wanted to be.  Then, she looked at us and said, “oh, do you have a half day?”  The girls weren’t feeling very chatty, so I answered, “no, we homeschool it gives us great flexibility.  We don’t have snow days or inservice days, so an hour here or there does not impact our studies.  And we LOVE it!”

As normally happens, she looked at us and said, “that’s great!  Enjoy your day.”

Yes, even today, I felt a little nervous going out and about with the girls.  I don’t mind the people who ask why, I can explain to them, but there are those that just give us a sideways look.  But really, who can blame them?  Our lifestyle and schooling choice is not typical or mainstream.

A study completed in 2012, using data from the 2007 census found out of the 51,135,000 students in the US, 1,508,000 were homeschooled, with most of the homeschool children, 58% being boys and 60% were families with three or more children.  A higher percentage of the parents who homeschooled had bachelor degrees, 50% compared to 43% of non-homeschooling parents.

I included several facts that I found of interest, but the one most pertinent to my reaction to people asking me about my kids not being in school is that there are only 1,508,000 (as of 2007) children being homeschooled in the US.  With that kind of difference in numbers, I don’t find peoples questions odd at all.  I know I wondered before we began our homeschooling journey.  I don’t mind people asking and I love it when my kids are feeling like talking and they express how we do things with all of their excitement and honesty.

In truth, don’t we all wonder about how and why people do things when they are out of the norm?  I know I do.  I am often too much of a chicken to ask, but some aren’t.  And to them, I say bravo and thank you for the overwhelmingly positive response our family has received.  You all make my job easier.

 

All the Girls, All the random

School is almost done here.  Our final thing is some Science.  I want to finish our unit on the Solar System.  That’s all.  Nothing more.  I’ve told the girls when they finish that, we are done.

And…they are dragging their feet on doing it.  I mean, come on.  If someone told me I could be done with school if I finished one thing…it would be done that day!!!

But no…Caitlyn says, “I’ll do more tomorrow.”  Sue says, “I want to do it with Grandma with 2 doggies when she visits Friday.”  Yeah, like she’s really going to want to do school work when seeing grandma for the first time since Christmas.

Oh well, we’ll keep schooling until they are done.

Patrice did great in speech therapy last year.  Most of the time she is very easy to understand.  This morning, not so much.  She yelled it to me over and over.  She yelled it over and over to Caitlyn.  She yelled it over and over at Sue.

We got nothin’, but this look.

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Caitlyn is currently refusing to brush her teeth and Sue just perforated my ear drum with her scream because there is a moth in the bathroom.

Apparently, moths are terrifying.  Who knew?!

We couldn’t wait until August, we gave Patrice one of her birthday presents early.

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An Anna dress.  I got a great deal on Amazon.  Hubby doesn’t quite agree, but it was a great deal.  Great!

We’ll have to wait and see what fun the girls provide at our Climb Out of the Darkness.  I am still looking for walkers and donors.  You can register at the highlighted link.  Please join us June 21 at 1 pm in Clarkston at Independence Oaks.  We would love to have you!!

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Can’t come out that day?  We have another fundraiser, as part of the Climb Out of Darkness going on June 26 at Noodles and Company in downtown Royal Oak.  I will have fliers and electronic fliers soon as part of this.  Our Climb gets 25% of all proceeds from those identifying themselves as with our fundraiser.  I will be posting more information like crazy as I have it.

Life Must Be Good

I’ve noticed, I have less to blog when life is good.  My brain goes blank.  I guess that is a good  super problem to have.

Thing is, life doesn’t feel like it has been good.  I mean, come on, I was just in the hospital.

But I wasn’t in the psych ward.  That’s good.

And my roommate was quiet.  That’s good.

I advocated for myself.  That’s good.

I got results and the medication to fix the problem.  That’s good.

I stayed up all night reading a book.  And while I was dragging all day yesterday because of it, it was liberating.  That’s good.

The asthma attack from Hades ended.  That’s good.

I got one-on-one time with Caitlyn this weekend.  That’s good.

My contacts quit irritating me, so I can wear them again.  That’s good.

You can now buy Gelato in the grocery store.  That’s good.

The hospital called me back today and I made my dissatisfaction over the care I received this weekend known.  That’s good (for me at least).

Sue is now reading.  I am going to have to dye my hair pink and purple.  That’s good.

The depression has stayed away.  That’s GOOD!

So, I guess, looking amongst the rough, LIFE IS GOOD.

 

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Fame and Fortune

I’m not looking for fame and fortune in any area of my life, but especially not in my  writing.  I am just looking to be heard.  My heart is to walk alongside others, have them hear about my journey and me to hear about theirs.  And maybe share some ice cream.

That’s one of the things I talked about in a neat storyteller interview over at LeahPeah.  I’d love it if you took a hop over there, read my piece and peruse her home on the web.

Then, come back over here and help out Postpartum Progress via my Climb Out of the Darkness.

Today, the family and I went to Independence Oaks where the climb is going to be held.  It is gorgeous.  The route we chose is completely paved, so great for strollers.  We will be walking 2.2 miles through beautiful terrain.

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Independence Oaks is very special to me.  I first visited there when the postpartum depression and anxiety were raging out of control.  I fell in love, and begged to go back as often as possible.  It was, and is, my healing place.  I know true healing comes from the Lord, but here, I can just breathe.  The tension drains from me.  I fall in love with Independence Oaks every time I am there.

Today was no different.  The ups and downs of this depressive episode are continuing and they are wearing on me.  In the depths, it literally hurts to breathe.  But today, as with every other time we have been there, I felt tension release and I could draw a deep breathe for the first time since seeing my friend on Sunday.  It’s just my place.

I would love to show you my place on June 21.  I would love to have you walk with us, I would love to show you my place.  Won’t you please head over to Crowdrise and commit to join us?

A New Year Crept In

I spent New Year’s Eve Day begging a headache to go away.  It failed to listen.  It became a migraine instead.  That refused to respond to any medications.  Then it was nice enough to become stomach issues, that also refused to respond to medication.

Today is my first day back on my feet.

Thanks to all who listened to me whine via Facebook and text message.

I did send hubby a Facebook popcorn idea that he tried.  It turned out great.

You cover the bottom of a glass bowl with popcorn kernels and cover the bowl, we used a Pampered Chef batter bowl with a dinner plate.  The recipe says to put it in the microwave for 2 minutes and 45 seconds.  Hubby found it worked at about 4 minutes.  He then added butter and salt.  It was yummy without the awful smell of microwave popcorn.  I hate the over-the-top smell of microwave popcorn.  This didn’t smell and tasted good on my mad tummy.  We will do it again and again.

I’ve also pretty much given up diet coke.  I have replaced my habit with decaf iced tea.  Maybe that will support my quest for less mad tummy days.  I am also keeping a food journal to share with my family doctor to see if she can identify anything that should be axed.

Monday will bring the start of our school year in 2014.  We are forecasted to get about 10 inches of snow by Monday morning, but that won’t spell a snow day for us.  Don’t tell the girls.

I am making an addition to our schooling Monday.  We will start Explode the Code (phonics) with Caitlyn and Sue.  I’m concerned it will be too easy for Caitlyn, so we may end up skipping through much of the book, but we really need some phonics instruction for Sue.  I know the rules of English, but I am struggling to get them across to a 6 year old.  The English language has soooo many rules, and yet, it rarely follows any of them.  Darn language.  Have to give Sue all the tools to get through Fancy Nancy and the Dazzling Book Report so mama can get some dazzling hair!!!

We went up north to visit my family for the Christmas holidays.  Hubby did a great job fitting everything in the car to get up there and even better getting it all in to come back.  My girls might have gotten spoiled for Christmas!!!

I tried to be a little more present and a little less behind the camera, but here are a few pictures.

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This is our Jesus Box.  It is the first thing we open during our family Christmas.  It has the Christmas story in it, which daddy reads, and lights (flashlights) for each of the girls to remind them we as Christians are called to be the light of the world.

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Patrice busting a move at Grandma with 2 Doggies house.

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I hope your New Year came in a little nicer than mine.  But overall, I can’t complain too much.  I had my family and a  wonderful Christmas holiday.

Please forgive the run on sentences that snuck into this post.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!