Friday, February 13, 2015

How to Love your Husband

I've talked about sharing love with others, our kids and God.  Obviously not in the order of importance!  Today I want to share about loving our husbands.

As a women I want to be loved, and feel loved, special and important to my man. Yet what about when life is busy, when jobs keep him away, or when babies keep you from having time together?  What happens when you don't "feel loved"?  I've been married for 14 years and though I know my husband loves me there are plenty of times when I haven't felt loved. Feelings change.  Let's face it we are women and if you are anything like me you can feel like everything is wonderful and 2 minutes later feel like the world is falling apart.  We cannot base our life and our marriages on feelings.

 My husband and I have a covenant marriage.  It's a covenant before God.  We have vowed that we will be together for life.  So that means we have to work at our relationship.  We have to work through tough times and we have to be attentive to each other's needs.  Life will not always make things easy for us.  Let's face it we have a real enemy who want to steal, kill and destroy as the Bible says in John 10:10.  Do you think that enemy wants our marriages strong and thriving? Doubtful! Our marriages are supposed to reflect Christ's love for his Church.  When we have broken marriages it does not accurately depict Yahweh God and His great love for us.

So what can you do as a wife today?  You can follow what the Lord said in Ephesians 5:33.  We can respect our husbands.  So first we need to find out what makes them feel disrespected.  Most of us know the obvious; Don't yell at them, put them down or be-little them. What about when it's not so obvious.  Maybe they feel disrespected by something that you've never considered as disrespectful.  I suggest, you ask them if there is anything you do that makes them feel disrespected.  Ask this in love and be willing to listen.  It might not be easy to hear. But, you want a strong marriage, you want to honor God, so be willing to listen.  Ask the Lord to help you be respectful to your husband.  Ask him to equip you to show respect even when you may not feel like it.  The more respected he feels, the more he will show you love.  It's the cycle that Dr. Eggerichs explains in his book Love and Respect. It's what the Bible said all along.

So in practical terms I challenge you to try to show your husband respect today.  Make him is favorite supper, ask him how you can meet his needs.  Don't correct him when he's speaking.  Don't interrupt him, letting him talk.  Give him some alone time.  I know we all need alone time and you may be thinking, "Listen I'm the one who's been home with kids following me to the bathroom all day, I'm the one who needs alone time."  I feel you!  But our husbands are blessing us with working hard so we can be home with these little ones.  So, make him a drink and tell him you want him to take an hour to just be by himself and do whatever he wants to do.  I bet he'll be shocked if he's anything like my husband.  Do something today to show your husband you respect him and what he does for you, that's the best way to love our men.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Time with your real Valentine

This week I shared ideas for sharing love with other's and ideas for dates with your children for quality time.  What about time with the LORD.  How do you show God you love him? Do you spend time just praising God for who He is?

I have to say that when you spend time praising, without a list of requests it draws you nearer to the heart of God.  I do not do it enough!  I want to encourage you to have time today just praising God.  Lift your hands, your heart and your voice as you thank the LORD for all he has done for you.  Thank Him for salvation.  Thank him for loving you so much that He died and rose again to open the way to eternal life.  Just praise Him and draw near to his presence.

I know it's easy to get bogged down in the daily tasks.  It's easy to be distracted by the constant go of our culture and our to-do-lists.  Let's step back and take time to show God how much we love Him.  He should come first in our lives. Does he come first in yours? Often, instead our kids come first and God might be the last thought as we fall into bed at the end of the day.  My challenge for you this Valentines week, is to do something to show God how much you love Him. I'm challenging myself too.   Let's do it together.  Put Christ first and all things will gain the proper order out of that one choice.

If you need help with having a devotion time there are lots of great resources on line.  Check out Good Morning Girls or  Nancy Leigh DeMoss Radio for more resources.

Have a great week growing closer to your one true love, Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Kid Dates

Let's face it we are busy people.  I am home all day with my kids, but in that time I'm not just mom.  I wear many hats.  I'm the teacher, the cook, the house keeper, the wife, the friend, the blogger and so many other roles.  So at the end of the day I sit back and think, "when was the quality time?"  All of us long for it.  All of us want quality time with our spouses, or a girls night out with our friends.  We long for quiet time to have with God, with no interruptions.  Just like we long for that quality time, our children long for it too. They want time when you're not directing them in math or keeping them task oriented or sending them off to play so you can cook, clean or blog.  They want special time with just you! How do you give your kids quality time?

In our home we have dates with our kids.  My kids love their dates. It's a time for them to be without their siblings and have my or my husband's undivided attention.  During their dates, I DON'T text or talk on the phone. I don't try to rush through.  I listen to them.  

Our dates have been as simple as me taking a child along to go shopping.  During the drive to the store I engage them in singing songs together or talking about whatever is on their minds.  While shopping I hold their hand, or sit them in the cart and look at them.  Make lots of eye contact, ask them questions, take time and laugh with them.   I usually will buy a little something for us to share that's not on the shopping list.  Maybe a cup of hot cocoa or a little pack of stickers.  

One of my favorite dates with my son we went to the store and bought a little model car set that had the wood pieces, glue and paint all in the kit, with stickers.  I bought a plastic table cloth and we then went to an ice cream shop.  We put the table cloth over the table to keep it free from paint and glue and we spent quality time building his cars, painting them and laughing.  Then we ate our ice cream and took our creations home.  Clean up was a breeze.  I wrapped up the table cloth and threw it away on my way out the door.  I made sure we sat where we were not facing the tv screens that seem to frequent ever shop.  It was such a great time and a great memory.  My son has those little cars on a shelf in his room and every time I see them I remember our special date.  I've done the same type of thing with my daughters beading or sewing or painting a picture together.  

Sometimes our dates are at night and Daddy and I get alone time with one child.  We might play a game together or watch a movie or make a batch of cookies.  Whatever we do we make sure that the child we are with knows they are special, they can talk to us about anything and we love having this special time with them.  All of our kids desire date time.  For me it's a time that I put all my other hats aside and focus all my attention, my love on my sweet child.  I love their date time.  I feel like it helps me connect more with my children, so I'm not always the teacher, or the cook, I'm their mother who adores them. 

How do you have quality time with your kids.  Do you do date nights? If you haven't I suggest you try one this week.  

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Share Valentines Love

As I home school my kids I want to give them opportunities to share God's love with others. One way I have found is by doing something in our community. We have taken school time to make things to give to others.  In the past we've made cookies and taken them to fire fighters and said thank you for their hard work.  We've made crafts to give to elderly.  I want them to see that while learning everyday knowledge is important it's just as important for us to take the time to reach out to others.

With Valentines just around the corner I thought I'd share some little craft ideas that you could do with your kids or home school group with the intent to give them away. You could take them to a hospital or the local police station or post office or a local nursing home to let people know you're thankful for them.

I got my supplies all from the local Dollar Tree.  I got foam sheets, and cut them in half to be the cards.  They had foam sticker hearts that we used to make the birds and the dancers.  We used cupcake papers for the skirts. The love bugs are pom poms, pipe cleaners and glitter glue for faces.  It was all at the Dollar Tree.  You can spend a little but make a lot to share love this Valentines day.  The kids had fun creating their own sticker filled cards full of glitter too of course.  Let them have fun with it and tell them that it will bless the hearts of the people who receive it.

Here are examples of what we did:

Monday, February 9, 2015

Veggie Math Lesson

I was remembering how as a kid I went to see a colonial days exhibit where people were dressed up and acted out their daily lives.  The only thing I remember from the exhibit was making a string of vegetables.  I'm not sure why we sewed the veggies on a string.  I don't really even know what it has to do with colonial times.  All I know is it was fun, I made a necklace out of it, and enjoyed eating off it.  

So I got my kids set up at the kitchen table to make our own snack necklaces.  
I used durable sewing thread and a needle.  Each child had their own needle threaded, and had a cutting board to work on.  We put carrots, cucumbers, peppers and celery on our stings.  They practiced the skill of hand sewing and using thimbles while making a pattern out of their snack.  The math comes in for little kids with making patterns. You can also do addition and subtraction.  Like 4 cucumbers plus 5 carrots equals 9 veggies on the string.  Of course the easy subtraction comes into play as you eat the pieces off your necklace. 

Once their patterns were done I tied them around their neck, with a big enough gap for them to pull it over their heads.  They spent the day snacking on their veggie necklace.  

Next time you're doing patterning or teaching sewing or just want a fun snack try a veggie necklace!

   * Clothing disclosure: carrots will leave orange on shirts and skin. Have Fun!