Monday, June 29, 2009


Psalm 57:7 in the Amplified Bible says, "My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is steadfast and confident! I will sing and make melody."

Joyce Meyer comments about this verse in her devotional about confidence in her book, The Everyday Bible. I have discovered that staying confident at all times is vital to a successful ministry and to an overcoming life. The mind is a battlefield, and the devil lies to us by putting wrong thoughts in our minds. He is constantly trying to steal our confidence. We can be confident by faith because our confidence should be in Christ, not in ourselves. No matter how I feel, I still believe that I can do whatever I need to do through Christ who strengthens me.

We, as mothers especially, need energy and confidence because we are teachers to our children and companions to our husbands. We can all make lists of our weaknesses, but we must choose to focus on the strengths of our Lord Jesus Christ and His power through us to accomplish His will. And go about our day with an attitude of worship.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Celebrity Ministry

The breaking news of Michael Jackson's death hits hard for most people because it is so unexpected. Of course, we're all hoping he's moon walking in heaven. However, it makes me think about all the other celebrities who are suffering from sickness, loneliness, and/or depression, like John and Kate plus Eight who are going through a difficult divorce.

The world of fame shelters celebrities from a supportive community. They are surrounded by paparazzi who are quick to point out flaws & star struck fans who put them on pedestals and view them as perfect.

As we pray for our husbands and children, our unsaved loved ones and those suffering overseas, let's also pray for our fellow celebrities who are often overlooked.

And the prayer of faith shall save the sick [those in need],
and the Lord shall raise him up . . .

James 5:15a

Dear Baby...

I have kept a journal for my girls (one each) since I was pregnant with them. It has been neat writing to them while they were still growing inside me... I decided to journal through their first year, documenting all my thoughts, prayers, and even fears about their lives and how they have changed mine. I plan on giving them the journal as gifts when they are teenagers... when it's challenging to understand how much your parents love and care about you..

Journaling is fun because there is no structure and you can write whenever you can (which is great for us moms). You can also:

-write about how you felt when you first heard their heartbeat
-note all the things they liked (or disliked) as a baby
-document your child's milestones
-jot down answered prayers
-paste pictures
... it's all up to you!

It's never too late to journal to your little ones. As you know, our kids grow so fast, and we forget the sweetest moments too easily... So grab a journal and whenever you think "I want to share this moment/story with my kids when they are older"... write it down!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Thing of Beauty...

My daughter loves Mary Poppins... In fact, we were just watching the movie this morning (while she is recovering from a yucky stomach bug) and I heard this quote...

"A thing of beauty is a joy forever."
-Mary Poppins

This quote reminded me of how important for us Mamas to be constantly exposed to and surrounded by "things of beauty" or things that inspires us, lifts us up and brings us a lot of JOY. For me, examining beautiful artwork often slows down time, relaxes me and takes me to a place where I don't have to think about what chore to do next, what meal to prepare, etc. Whether it's photography, nature, sewing, baking, singing.... whatever your favorite hobbies or things may be... Surround yourself with beauty and share them with your little ones too!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Promises and Prayer for Children

I will teach your children and make them successful.
Isaiah 54:13 (CEV)

Worship only Me, the Lord your God. I will bless you with plenty of food and water and keep you strong. Women will give birth to healthy children and everyone will live a long life.
Exodus 23:25-26

...we always pray that God will show you everything he wants you to do and that you may have all the wisdom and understanding that his Spirit gives. Then you will live a life that honors the Lord, and you will always please him by doing good deeds. You will come to know God even better. His glorious power will make you patient and strong enough to endure anything, and you will be truly happy.
Colossians 1:9b-11

Monday, June 22, 2009

Emphasize the Fun in Reading Books

There is a subtle gem in sitting still and reading books. Not every child immediately wants to pick up a book and read. Some need a little encouragement.

Read books with fun topics of interest–giraffes, airplanes, bulldozers, ice creams . . .
Read books that encourage your child to participate through tactile experience with flaps and textures or visually associating pictures with words, for example the Learn To Read Series by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing.

Read books at a consistent time each day so that you child will expect and look forward to story time.
Mom should read books as well. Be an example to your child. He or she will copy you, just like your other actions -talking on the phone or cooking with pots and pans. You’ll be surprised that over time your child may find a book and join you!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Toy Swap

One of the BEST ways to save money is to do a "toy swap" with family members, friends and/or neighbors you trust.

My girlfriend and I have been swapping toys about every other month since the beginning of this year and it has been a lot of fun! Our kiddos love it whenever we bring home "new" toys.. and we don't feel bad or guilty at all if they get tired of them after a few days (some times after a few minutes!). It has also been a great way for me to figure out what toys I can/should invest $ in.

You can also save a TON of money by swapping clothes! These are all things our kids grow out of and tired of SO QUICKLY! So save money by SWAPPING!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Date Nights

"Date Nights" are a MUST when you have little ones.

As challenging as it might be to find the time and energy to get out of the house with your spouse after a busy day (...not to mention arranging for a sitter, making sure your kids will be okay with the sitter, etc.), it is one of the most valuable things you can do for your marriage.

When my first child was only a few weeks old, I remember reading in a book about the importance of going out on a date with your spouse every week after the baby is born... and I honestly thought that the author was nuts! First of all, I was exhausted from taking care of the newborn and who can afford going out every week anyway? But as my baby grew older (and I was less tired), I knew that we had to make "dating" a priority in our marriage.

Since we can not afford to go to a restaurant for a romantic dinner every week, we have designated one day of the week where we will spend quality time with each other after the kids go to sleep. Whether this time is spent watching a movie together on the couch, playing games, having a conversation (without being interrupted)... this has definitely brought us closer and it is also something we look forward to every week.

I hope and pray that every quality moment you spend with your spouse will reignite your marriage and the love you have for one another!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Tub Toys

Bath toys are great for your little ones when they graduate from the infant tub and make a transition to the "big tub". Bath toys are especially handy if your child is not a fan of taking a bath. They usually like:

-Something that sticks.

-Something that squirts.

-Something that stacks and pours.

-And put all of these items into something that organizes and keeps them sanitary.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Slow Dance


Have you ever watched kids

On a merry-go-round?

Or listened to the rain

Slapping on the ground?

Ever followed a butterfly's erratic flight?

Or gazed at the sun into the fading night?

You better slow down.

Don't dance so fast.

Time is short.

The music won't last.

Do you run through each day

On the fly?

When you ask, "How are you?"

Do you hear the reply?

When the day is done

Do you lie in your bed

With the next hundred chores

Running through your head?

You'd better slow down

Don't dance so fast.

Time is short.

The music won't last.

Ever told your child,

We'll do it tomorrow?

And in your haste,

Not see his sorrow?

Ever lost touch,

Let a good friendship die

Cause you never had time

To call and say "Hi"?

You'd better slow down.

Don't dance so fast.

Time is short.

The music won't last.

When you run so fast to get somewhere

You miss half the fun of getting there.

When you worry and hurry through your day,

It is like an unopened gift.... Thrown away.

Life is not a race.

Do take it slower

Hear the music

Before the song is over.


Friday, June 5, 2009

What Divorce Says...

Heard a very powerful message by Mike Erre on marriage....and what divorce says to kids. Below are some notes I took. You can listen to it on podcast (message titled "1 Corinthians Pt3- The Gift of Marriage" 5/17/09) or go to the Rock Harbor website.

What divorce says to your kids:
-If I don't like something that the scriptures teach, I don't have to obey it and neither do you
-You don't have to keep your promise
-It's okay to get out if it gets really hard

-God isn't big enough to redeem this

-And my short-term happiness is more important than your long-term happiness

When you stick together, here is what you are saying:
-God can redeem anything

-By His grace and strength, when we make promises we keep them

-Your long-term happiness is more important than my short-term happiness
-You are special enough to stay together for
-And when the scripture commands something under God's authority, we do it even if we don't like it

In the message, Mike Erre mentions that there are obvious exceptions where couples have to/need to separate. But for all others, we have to do everything in our power to stay together... especially for our kids.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Love of Learning

"These are lots of things a parent can do to help a child develop a love of learning and searching - things that will carry through as a foundation for a life of joyful and successful learning. Most of these are things a parent does at one time or other anyway. A bonus is that your child will be getting a good foundation for later studies, even picking up some elements of reading, writing, and math!" - Lilian Jones

Here are some activity ideas that Lilian provides:

  • Tell stories or read a lot of wonderful books.
  • Go to children's book readings at the library.
  • Take leisurely walks, observing every wonderful little bit of nature out there.
  • Look for faces and animals in the clouds.
  • Listen for the farthest away sound you can hear.
  • Listen to children's audio tapes together. Make your own together as well.
  • Watch sunsets together.
  • Put up a bird feeder outside a window where you can see all the different kinds of birds coming and going.
  • Go out and observe the night sky together.
  • Plant a little garden or grow some plants in pots.
  • Introduce your child to music, songs, dancing, instruments.
  • Learn and say rhymes together.
  • Encourage them to have fun learning about their bodies.
  • Provide a sandbox or sand table and sand toys, including figures of people and animals.
  • Make and play with bubbles.
  • Make playdough and other fun art materials.
  • Do finger-painting, and paint simple pictures with watercolors.
  • Set up a little play store area with play food.
  • Provide large and easy to handle blocks made out of small boxes and shoe boxes.
  • Set up some shelves, boxes, or hangers where there are costume elements that your child can easily access for pretend play.
  • Allow for plenty of relaxed play and independent activities.

Monday, June 1, 2009


"A little faith will bring your soul to heaven, but a lot of faith will bring heaven to your soul."
-Author Unknown