March 22, 2012

I'm a big kid now!

Yes, I've hit 30 with a bang! Matt was a pain all day on my birthday last week and then totally surprised me with a party that night after he took me to Cheesecake Factory!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm beyond thrilled that he did all that and owe him BIG, so I thought I'd give him his first son in about a month or so :)

Then last weekend I got to get away for a Hearts at Home conference. It was such a treat to invest in myself and learn and be reminded of so much. The Duggars were the keynote speaker and I got to sit in on their parenting class. I wanted to take some time to record some great things I learned so that others could benefit as well.

Parenting by The Duggars (
*In order to have your children succeed you must first teach them to #1 LOVE GOD and #2 LOVE OTHERS

*She listens to sermons from with her kids or by herself as she is working out each day.

*She has a pdf of the 49 Character Quality traits she teaches her kids. This is something they pick one each month and study. The #1 trait she believes kids and young kids should know is Attentiveness. We have to teach them to be attentive to us in listening when we need them or to stop before they are hit by a car and also how to be attentive to the Lord.
#2 Obedience
#3 self-control
#4 gratefulness

* She plays an attentiveness/obedience game with her kids when they're around the age of talking. While they're playing with their toys she says, "Josie, we're going to play a game. When mommy says Josie you say yes maam, I'm coming. Now I'm going to hide and you listen for me to call you.
She then hides somewhere in the house and calls for Josie. She is supposed to hear Josie say, "yes maam I'm coming" or go back to the play area and take her by the hand to where she was and remind her of what to say. Then leave her back playing and try it again from another spot in the house. It's simply a game at a young age to teach them how to be attentive to your voice and obey what you're asking of them in a fun way.
I've started doing this with Avery and Grace and they love it. When I'm not playing the game just reminding them of what they're supposed to say it's neat to see them stop their ignoring and/or disobedience and start to say "yes mommy, I will obey." Since that is usually what I have to say vs come to me since our house isn't as big or have as many kids in it :)

*After every diaper change she gets them in the habit of saying, "thank you mommy for changing me" ...teaching them gratefulness.

*Joyfulness- she tries to always smile when she says their name...she also tries to hug or kiss them ALL 3 times a day!! If she can strive for that, surely I can do it for my 2!

Top Ten Messages we need to teach our kids

Whole presentation is at
Matthew 3:17, 17:5

She recommended "Grace-based parenting" (not sure of the author)

The voice they hear the loudest is yours.

#1 I love you unconditionally
-learn how they feel you're called "How to really love your child"
-learn their love language "The 5 love languages for children"
#2 I like you for who you are-just as you are
#3 I believe in you
#4 I love you too much to let you... Eph 6:4
#5 God loves you even more than I do
#6 Choices have consequences
#7 You and I will blow it sometimes, but God will always forgive if we ask Him.
- there is no place they can go that God can't find them
#8 God will never leave you or forsake you
#9 It's all grace. Living in God's grace makes life fun.
#10 I will always pray for you.

How to raise grateful children

Things that teach discontentment
-saying "I wish we could...", or "I'm sorry we can't"
-TV, internet, CATALOGS
-saying "it must be nice..."
- saying YES to fashions (teaching other kids to like them for what they have on not who they are even if grandma bought them

CHOOSE ACTIVITIES WISELY...her kid's favorite part about Disney was the camping :) They will remember the family time not the extravegant trips.

Defensive Tactics:
-find identity in Christ
-minimize the inflow of STUFF
-eliminate the power of stuff over them
-define ENOUGH (for them)
- purge your house often
They have to understand abundance and "how much is enough?"
-talk to grandparents and family about giving them consumable items or memberships to places

Teach kids financial decisions
-use a spending plan (budget)
-define wants/needs
-say "we choose not to buy that"
-use "the list" for your house and for them (make a list of all the things you'd like to buy and then save up for each one)
- say NO with conviction

-say to them "we've been starting to notice..." when they're getting caught up in something or letting a trend have power over them
-say "this is not going to serve you well"
- "this is not going to bring you joy"

50 Ways to improve your relationship with your husband

RADICAL is her acronym

R- Respect...Eph 5:33, notes to him, pray with your kids for him, give him reminders of things you need done, be open about your hopes and dreams

A- attitude....CHOOSE to act in loving ways, Google a Chuck Swindell quote about attitude

D- date your on being in love, dress up for him, date at home

I- intimacy can happen..."The Act of Marriage" by Tim & Bev LeHaye, schedule it

C- centered on Christ...Acts 17:24-28

A- allow for graceful, fight fair

L- laugh!...Prov. 17:22, lighten up

*Have a state of the union dessert
-ask each other 5 questions, every 6 months to a year (Do you feel respected?, Are
we where you thought we would be?, Do you feel loved?, What goals can I help you
with?, Do you feel valued?)
*Have a NON-NEGOTIABLE date night each week
*write an "I appreciate you" note 2 times a month
*make a note for yourself to pray for him with your kids every day that you can
*give him a 30 second hug as soon as he walks in the how both of your tensions and stress is immediately relieved.


So, to say the least when I came home I felt refreshed and like I could conquer anything now that I had all my tools. I've tried to use many of them and just asked the Lord to help me apply them logically for our family and to not discourage myself when I don't get them all right. So far, none of them have led me astray :)

We're on the homestretch for Drew to arrive....just over 4 weeks!!! His room is set, and I just need to pack my bag and RELAX cause life is about to get kicked up a notch!!

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