Monday, July 21, 2014

Kids and Current Events

Saturday afternoon sitting around the table at Grandparents drinking coffee and talking politics, religion, etc...when my oldest waits his turn sips some of his coffee, (half milk half coffee) and reply's..."well, I know one thing that plane that went down in Ukraine,  Russia better watch out, looks like their going to be in big trouble..." (yep. My 11 yr old talking current events.) I believe that's the joy of homeschooling they socialize with all ages, you all know what I mean...they can entertain the little ones, play with kids thier age or make profound statements in a grown conversation that u think they couldn't possibly understand. Anyway back to topic, if your like me, you tend to guard your children from the world, tend to change the channel from the news when the kids are around for fear of what may be said or heard? (Not easy to do when you have a husband who could happily watch CNN all day.) I come to realize, sheltering isn't always the answer, its taking time to have discussions with them, help them understand what's going on in the world around them, how to make good choices, make them decide how they can be part of the solution or part of the problem. I don't know about you but I love those discussion times with my kids, it's amazing to me what they are capable of understanding. I love watching the wheels turn in their heads and most importantly I  love that their thinking. In today's society we definitely need more thinkers, more people grounded in what they believe, those who know when it's time to take a stand and when to let it come to pass. We seem to live in a society that changes directions as the wind blows, and quite frankly I don't even think America as a whole knows which direction its going. Its our job to teach or children, not just academics, but about life in general about the world around them. I had a highschool economics teacher that used to make us watch the news each night and would quiz us on the topics the next day. At the time I hated it, could of cared less, I had better things to, I completely understand what she was trying to prove. So, my question is, how much discussion time to you allow with your children, are current events used as important teaching tools, or would your children even be aware of the world around them?? Truth is we can't shelter them forever, but we can lead them, teach them, and guide them as they grow.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Summer camps.

I don't know about you, but this year our summer has been so busy with camps and VBS. Looking forward now that things are settling down that we can get back into a routine and I can have all my boys back together. First, Taylor and Nolan spent the week at their grandparents and attended baseball camp where their grandad is the highschool baseball coach. They learned a great deal and we're able to sharpen some skills on the field, but my real highlight was when they brought them back. Understand that they love our children dearly but they are public school teachers so they have never been 100% on board with our decision to homeschool, which is fine. I don't ask anyone to agree with it I just ask you to respect our decisions on what we feel is the best way to raise our children. So, of course first conversation with my husband's  mother, "They are having so much fun at baseball camp, and they're making all kinds of friends." Lol, really. I wanted to be like well yeah, did you think we keep them locked up in the house all day?? Sad reality is most think homeschoolers do that, and maybe some do, I don't know. It was certainly good that they were able to see them socialize with kids "their own age." After that they went on to tell us, how many compliments they got at restaurants and such as the boys were so well mannered. Praise the Lord. Now, tell me again how public school is the best option for them? You really want them influenced by today's generation?? At least most of them, that have forgotten "Please and Thank you", or how about, "Yes, Sir? No, Ma'am?" Hmmm. I think I'll stick to homeschooling and raising them against the grain of what society has deemed acceptable behavior. After baseball camp, we had our week of Vbs at church. My oldest got the opportunity to be a Junior helper in a younger class. It was really rewarding watching him help teach songs, lead his class to different stations and be a help to the teacher, sort of a new responsibility for him. Next on the list, we sent him off to Church camp for the first time. I can definitely tell God has been working in his life. He had such a good time, from water slides to four story zip lines, archery, paintball. The theme this year was a new selfie. If your like me, I have yet to understand the craze of everyone posting pics of themselves on social media sites. So, they spent some real Bible time talking about how your made new in Christ, and you should present yourself as Christ would and not looking to the world for acceptance. Whew, it's been fun but sure is nice things are slowing down now.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

A little work never hurt anybody.

So today we are driving around, doing a little shopping and we come up to this intersection, third one  with a ridiculous amount of traffic. We see kids as we're approaching, which we already knew from the previous lights, they were young kids raising money to go compete, cheerleading and football I assume by the clothing they wore and the signs. Now my first response is "What on earth are these parents thinking.." letting their kids ask for donations on a busy street like that? Someone could get hurt, kidnapped, who knows anymore. Well, apparently we weren't the only ones who thought it was poor judgement. As we pulled up two Police officers motioned for a Dad (or the adult, coach, whatever) and we watch him argue with the officers for a bit at first and as the officers don't budge he then collect all the kids as they go elsewhere. Really? Where's the common sense?? Sorry if I sound judgemental, but you had to know that was not a bright idea.

So, after I got over husband and I had the conversation in the truck as we're driving. Surely every kid has done fundraisers at some point in their life if they were involved in any extracurricular activities. Bake sales, car washes, girl scout cookies, I've done several, but I can honestly say I have never stood with a bucket and begged for money. Not the first time I've seen this either. I'm all for helping sure, but why are we teaching are youngsters to be beggers?? What happend to hard work pays off? A strong work ethic? A little elbow grease? Things don't get handed to you on a silver platter, you earn them in life, and the sooner our kids learn this the better. My oldest just returned from church camp, and he worked several fundraisers inside the church to earn his way. Could we have paid his way sure, but if he worked for it doesn't it mean twice as much to him? The One fundraiser I remember the most was a pancake breakfast they did, he (11) worked the griddle all morning flipping pancakes, no parents in the kitchen working other than supervising, I watched him wipe sweat from his brow it was so hot and crowded in there. And ya know what...He survived!!! I bet he made 100 pancakes or more. The biggest reward came when we were in the youth room and the children's pastor tallied up his cost after working thes fundraisers, His original cost was $230. We only ended up paying $49 The look on his face when he saw how much he earned for the hard work was priceless, even more priceless when he looked at me, and I was just as shocked. Lol, I said "Boy, you made your Momma proud." He was all grins to know that he had helped contribute. Is it really so hard you can't bake some cookies with your kids to sell?? If my 11 yr old now knows how to mow a lawn and my 8 yr old can follow instructions and bake some cookies, I assure your kid can earn his way to whatever event he's wanting to go. Just my two cents for what it's  worth.