Father’s Day Creativity

I helped Garrett make this Toolbox for his Daddy for Father’s Day.  I felt so creative!

I had to put together that cute tape measure and really all of the tools.  Garrett might have been able to do some of it, but I just went ahead and did it myself.  I knew he wouldn’t mind!  I was running out of time, too.  He did a good job of telling me what he wanted to write on each tool.

I made a hammer with a nail in wood, a tape measure, a plane with real sandpaper, a saw in a piece of wood, a nut and bolt.

I got this from Cross-Eyed Curriculum at www.Currclick.com.  It’s called Dad’s Toolbox.  Fitting name, huh?

We also made a T-shirt with the kids’ handprints on it. And we made an apron with their handprints on it. He cooks a lot and wears an apron to protect his clothes. We even made a T-shirt for my dad with their handprints. He was here to get it in person! Then I made a lapbook. It’s the very first lapbook that I designed all by myself. I used the clipart from Appleworks for most of the booklets, but I had a brainstorm in the middle of the night that would be more appealing to the big boys. I found some pictures from Halo 3 and made booklets out of them. They did react with way more excitement than they had been showing about the whole lapbook idea. I finally got each one of the kids to write something nice to their daddy in a booklet and then glued them into the lapbook.

I worked hard to honor my own dad and Gary this Father’s Day! I made a neat card for my dad and had Fiona make it for Gary. I even had two of her little friends make this same card for their dads. They were really cute. Unfortunately, my dad was sick on Father’s Day. He couldn’t get too excited about the gifts we gave him, but we knew that he was too sick to react any differently. I got this card as a freebie from The Old Schoolhouse online conference. It was designed by Hold That Thought. I thought it was lovely.


A Conversation Between Two Mothers

One fine day, on a beach in Florida, Mrs. Fiddler Crab came across Mrs. Horseshoe Crab who was buried in the mud at the moment. “Good day, Mrs. Horseshoe!” said the crab to the non-crustacean. The latter unburrowed herself to see as to whom was addressing her. For, she could see out of the sand because her eyes are quite high on her carapace, but she could not see what was going on in the back of her. “Oh, hello, Mrs. Fiddler, how are you doing this fine day?” “I’m doing quite well, thank you. I’m just ever so tired of carrying these eggs around.” Mrs. Fiddler gently patted the egg sponge that had been on her abdomen for days.
“My, how I wish I didn’t have to leave mine in a hole,” Mrs. Horseshoe Crab said sadly.
“Well, maybe you could watch your little ones run to the sea to grow and become adults.”
“I’m not sure I could take that, Mrs. Fiddler.”
“Why not, my friend?”
“There are many that get eaten by predators, you know”
“Yes, I do know, but maybe you could help some of them make it and see your children enter into the world safely…”
“I don’t know…”
“Mrs. Horseshoe, it’s going to happen whether you watch it or not, and you might as well watch it, so you can try to be of some assistance. But, of course, it’s your decision.”
“Yes, I think I shall try.”

The next morning, just before dawn the two set out to watch the little ones make their get-away. But they did not see them. Just before the friends gave up, they saw, a few feet away, little horseshoe crabs scuttling toward the sea. Suddenly, they heard the sound of a bird. Mrs. Fiddler spotted it and made her way toward where the bird was aiming. She made it to the right spot at the exact time the bird swooped down to attack and, with reflexes unknown to most crabs, she pinched the bird’s behind with her cheliped. Scared beyond sense, the bird flew away from this all-you-can-eat buffet and the strange monster that looked a lot like food at first glance, but hurts like the dickens when encountered. Mrs. Horseshoe was grateful to her friend for what she had done, and they watched the natural phenomenon together, totally different creatures, but both created and loved by God.



Anna told me she had to write a report for her Biology class. She uses Exploring Creation With Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures of the 5th Day by Apologia.

It took her a few days to write it. She didn’t ask for any help. I explained to her about plagiarism so that she would write the report in her own words. She said she was having some trouble with that because it was already written as simply as it could be. I was not sure what kind of paper I would see when she finished and handed it in to me.

The day she gave me the report, I was holding my breath. I was hoping it would be her own work and that she was actually learning something, not just regurgitating what was written in the book. Her report was good and she drew a wonderful diagram of crustacean anatomy. I was impressed.

Then I started reading this delightful story about a horseshoe crab and a fiddler crab. I didn’t know what to think. I thought she must have copied this story from the book, but I wondered why she put this in with her report. When I finished reading I asked her if she wrote that story. She nonchalantly said, “Yes.” I was amazed! I did not know she could write like this.

I am finding out that I have several budding writers among my children. All of that reading of living books to them throughout the years seems to be paying off.

I may be posting some other samples of their writing in the future. They are writing stories with chapters, so I may just put up one chapter at a time. Would you like to read some more of my children’s stories?

Hello, is anybody there?

Prepare the Way for His Coming

This is a paper that my son just wrote. The Lord gives him amazing revelation. I believe that all American Christians would benefit from learning about how our Father really sees us and wants to relate to us and how He wants us to relate to Him and to each other.

Please read this and tell us what you think.


Reinstating The Father Revelation

“For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption by which we cry, Abba, Father!”
(Romans 8:15, MKJV).

There is a serious issue in the American Judeo-Christian Church of our time – a system of belief and practice that is contrary to the Gospel of God’s Kingdom, and which is reminiscent of the Nicolaitans who rose up near the beginning of Church history.

Principally, the Nicolaitans held the doctrine that there are two groups of people in the Church: the special, gifted people who are superior in the kingdom of God, and then there are those who are less gifted and inferior to the first, and who are therefore of less importance. They believed that the specially gifted people of the first category were meant to rule over the general “laymen” of the second category who were supposed to devote their lives to serving the specially gifted people of the first category, the Church “leaders”. Basically, the Nicolaitans taught that the Kingdom of God is a caste system, and that there is a big division between those who are the anointed leaders or “clergy” and the common people or “laity”, with the clergy being the aristocratic class of God’s Kingdom, and the laity being the lowly peasants and serfs who are here on earth to serve the clergy.

This setup is not at all according to the purpose and nature of authority and leadership in the Kingdom of God, which Christ set forth in the Gospels (see Mt 20:25-28; Mr 10:42-45), and which Paul also modeled in his apostolic ministry (see 2Cor 1:24). In fact, the doctrine of the Nicolaitans is diametrically opposed to the teaching of Christ, robbing believers of their inheritance in Christ and the dignity that belongs to them as sons of God. But what has God said? “And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words which you shall speak to the sons of Israel” (Exodus 19:6, MKJV). And it is also written, “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for possession, so that you might speak of the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1Peter 2:9, MKJV; see also Re 1:6; 5:10). It is no wonder that when speaking in regard to the Nicolaitans, the Lord said: “I hate their deeds and their teaching!” (paraphrasing His words in Re 2:6 and Re 2:15).

Now what is the connection between this Nicolaitan caste system and the spirit of bondage? They are both joined in opposing the Spirit of adoption which brings the revelation of sonship and fatherhood. We are shown throughout Scripture, that a slave in the household is the opposite of a son (Joh 8:35; Ga 4:7,30). This does not mean that sons are exempt from serving, but those who have been freed and made sons in Christ (see John 1:12; 8:36), the same should use their freedom as servants of God (see 1Pe 2:16), not as servants of men (see 1Co 7:23).

The problem with the Nicolaitan caste system – or any other caste system for that matter – is that it takes men who are rightfully sons of God, and it makes them into slaves of other men instead of servants of God. This cannot be done without tearing down or severely diminishing the belief that we are God’s sons, because a son is also an heir of God and joint-heir of Christ, and therefore inferior to no one and dependent only on God’s loving care for them. For the caste system to be successful, there must be an established ideology in two classes: 1) the “common” people must believe that they are inferior to and dependent upon their human “lords”, and therefore they must serve them; 2) those who are gifted or simply positioned in leadership must believe that they are superior to those of the lower classes, and that the common people cannot properly exist without the rulers running the show.

But in contrast, a person who is established in the truth that he is God’s child and a joint-heir with Christ will never bow to the rulers of such a system, but he will conduct his life freely and outside of the control of the “ruling class”. And the true leaders of God’s Kingdom – those who walk in the revelation of sonship – will not conduct themselves as the rulers of the caste system, but they will recognize that the authority they have been given is to serve God by serving their brethren. The leaders who walk in the Spirit of adoption will conduct themselves as fathers, training and teaching the spiritual children that God has given them – not to become dependent upon their leaders and think of them as superior – but to grow and mature in Christ and the abilities God has given them, until they too can become leaders and spiritual fathers.

Because of all this, the spirit of bondage and its caste system are at war against the Spirit of adoption and His system of sonship. And it is due to this deeply entrenched enmity that the Spirit has not been welcome to move in much of the American Church, because we have given in to the spirit of bondage by giving in to its caste system. One of the biggest indicators of this, is the fatherless state and/or attitude of so many teens and young adults in our day. This in turn, has caused an increase in bondage and lawlessness which is unprecedented in our nation’s history, and which is threatening America with a quick collapse from within – self-destruction because of our increasingly diverse and intensified sins. This is a sign along with many others that we are reaching the close of this age.

“But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound” (Romans 5:20b, KJV). God is not through with the Church in America, but He has reserved a weapon for these last days, which will be able to overpower the strongholds of the spirit of bondage and usher in the Spirit of adoption and God’s Kingdom: “Behold, I am sending you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the sons, and the heart of the sons to their fathers, that I not come and strike the earth with utter destruction” (Malachi 4:5,6, MKJV). This prophecy is not concerning a literal visitation from Elijah, but it is referencing the spirit and power of Elijah which John the Baptist walked in to prepare the way for Christ’s first coming (see Lu 1:17), and which will be released in an even greater measure to the Church in these last days, so that the earth will not be struck with utter destruction.

So what is the purpose that the power of the spirit of Eijah is given to accomplish? Just what was written: “…he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the sons, and the heart of the sons to their fathers…” The purpose of the spirit of Elijah is to bring reconciliation between the fathers and the sons, and most importantly, between the Father and His sons. The spirit of Elijah is being released so that the hearts of the children of God will be turned to know their Father, and their hearts will then be turned in the Father’s love toward their children. The spirit of Elijah then, is being released to tear down the resistance, release the spirit of Adoption into the lives of God’s people, establish them in the revelation of the Father’s heart towards them.

But the devil is not so foolish as to helplessly wait for God to finally unleash this dynamic weapon. The adversary has been spending these thousands of years cultivating a spirit to war against the spirit of Elijah. Just as Jezebel was the Prophet Elijah’s greatest adversary in his day, so the greatest adversary of the Elijah in these last days is Jezebel. Just as Elijah is mentioned in end-times prophecy and represents a spirit and power rather than the man himself, so Jezebel is mentioned in end-times prophecy (see Re 2:20) and she too represents a spirit and power rather than the evil woman of that name in history. The spirit of Jezebel is the opposite of the spirit of Elijah in every way, its purpose being to prevent the hearts of the fathers from being turned to the children, and especially to do its best in preventing the children of God from ever turning their hearts to know their Father. However, just as the Prophet Elijah was not defeated by Queen Jezebel – but on the contrary, he succeeded in his calling to raise up sons, and she failed to prevent this and came herself to a gruesome end – so the spirit of Elijah will be victorious over the spirit of Jezebel in these last days. It is important, though, that we do not underestimate the spirit of Jezebel and we are not fooled by its strategies.

One of the particular manifestations of the spirit of Jezebel which reveals that spirit at work, is when a father or grandfather is prevented by his wife from showing love to his children in discipline, reproof and instruction. The wife who is under that spirit will always run interference, and prevent the man from being the father he is supposed to be to His children. In the woman’s mind, she thinks that she is protecting the children from the father, who in her mind doesn’t understand the situation or know how to handle the children. Because of this, she does her best to prevent him from taking his role as a father, and she does her best to ensure that only her methods and personal judgment are exercised.

What does this do to the children? They end up lacking the full influence of their father, which they deeply need so that they can have a right identity and be secure in who they are. Because of their incomplete/skewed understanding of their father, they are not able to relate to God the Father properly, as their concept of a father altogether is false. This also severely hinders them from ever connecting properly to a spiritual leader or father in God’s kingdom, and they will gravitate towards false father-figures within religious and secular systems. The net effect is that they will be inclined towards the caste system and the spirit of bondage, and they will be repelled from truly knowing God.

This is only one of many strategies used by the Jezebel spirit, but many of its devices include the base strategic element of undermining those who are meant to be the leaders (i.e. fathers of the family, spiritual fathers), and usurping their authority. This is usually done in a subtle manner, and while there are instances where the spirit of Jezebel may take a more aggressive and blatant approach, the general rule is deception and shadowy manipulation.

Here is something I picked up from Arthur Burk: another prevalent pattern that can be witnessed in a person who comes under the influence and becomes a carrier of the Jezebel spirit, is that she is usually a woman who has accepted the false belief (whether consciously or unconsciously) that no one will ever take care of her and do what she needs (including God), and she thinks that the only way for her to get what she needs and wants is to get it herself – usually through contriving devices and behavior patterns designed to get it out of others. The basis for the strategies they use is always rooted in manipulation and control.

Why is it usually a woman who is under this spirit? Because a woman who is wounded in her self image – usually being malformed because of deficiency in her upbringing, lacking the influence of a good father, or else having the influence of a bad or abusive father – fits the mold of the Jezebel spirit more naturally, and men who are deficient usually default to other patterns that are more suited to their psychological makeup. But a woman has the fundamental need within her to know that she is loved and that she will be cared for and not abandoned or left to fend for herself. If this need is not met by her family when she is young, by her father in particular, then often she will come to the unconscious conclusion that no one will ever love and take care of her, and therefore she must figure out how to protect herself and acquire the things that she needs (i.e. emotionally, physically, etc.). And if this is further reinforced by a mother who also holds the same ideology, whether consciously or unconsciously, then she will very quickly become a perfect container for the spirit of Jezebel. And it is usually from within this context in childhood that a woman with Jezebelic tendencies will emerge.

It is vitally important to realize that such women who are under the sway of this spirit, are actually just wounded and hurting inside, and because of what is lacking within in them, they have been targeted by a spirit that has completely taken advantage of them. God still loves them, and He wants them to be freed from this false belief and the spirit that feeds on it and so cruelly uses them. That is one of the saddest things about women who have come to a Jezebelic view of life: they think that even God doesn’t love them and even He won’t take care of them. So even if they do come to some degree of relationship with Him, they don’t really trust Him, and they are so deeply rooted in their belief that they must take care of themselves and influence the outcome for things to be well for them, they even try to manipulate God in ways similar to how they manipulate other people. They usually aren’t even aware that they are living their whole lives based on this belief, but it is established on such a deep level in their identity, that they are often completely unconscious of the way that they are living their lives.
There are even many Christian women who believe that they are just normal, whole human beings living for Christ, but they are actually living from a foundation of Jezebelic beliefs and tendencies. These women believe that God exists, and often they even have a good theology on how God works in relation to humanity, but their perspective is skewed on such a foundational level, that even with all of this understanding built up, they still cannot properly relate to God, and they unconsciously reach for something and hold on to anything that gives them a feeling of being able to control God. They don’t see this; they think that they trust God!

But what they have learned has only touched the surface of their lives, and the depths of their foundations are still untouched. And this same internally distorted view of God, malignantly affects every single relationship they have like venom, especially with their most important human relationships: their friends, their children, their spouse. The closer the person, the more this Jezebelic foundation influences every aspect of the relationship. And where there is the Jezebelic foundation, very often the spirit of Jezebel will find a resting place, because it has agreement with the host. Remember the words of Jesus in regard to the demonic: “When the unclean spirit has gone out of a man, he walks through dry places seeking rest, and finds none. Then he said, I will return into my house from where I came out. And when he has come, he finds it empty, swept, and decorated. Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more evil than himself, and they enter in and live there…” (Matthew 12:43-45, MKJV; see also Lu 11:24-26). Where there is an emptiness, a void of truth and the absence of the Spirit of Truth, then there is an opening for the demonic to dwell there. That there is such an emptiness in even some Christian women, is evidenced by the untruth of the foundation which these women with Jezebelic tendencies live upon.

What, then, is to be done about all of this?

In regard to the spirit of Jezebel, we must develop and exercise our discernment, seeing where Jezebelic tendencies are evidenced in our lives and the lives of others. And then, we must commence praying intentionally and specifically for those who are under this bondage, asking in the Name of Jesus that God would reveal to them His true heart towards them, and that He would penetrate the lies that are at the foundation of their being, and replace them with His Truth. We should pray that God breaks the stronghold of the spirit of Jezebel and the spirit of bondage over them, and that He would pour out His Spirit of adoption upon them and establish them in His truth and love.

It may or may not be wise to attempt to engage with a person who has a spirit of Jezebel, to try to awaken them to the truth. The only chance that they have to be brought out of the deception, is for the Spirit of Truth to shed the light and love of God abroad in their hearts, and if He is not upon you and leading you to facilitate this, then it is likely that things will only be made worse. As is the general rule with spiritual warfare, prayer is the primary weapon against the spirit and stronghold of Jezebel. However, be sure that you remain within your proper bounds of authority in reference to the spirit of Jezebel itself. You should not attempt to directly bind, rebuke, or cast out that spirit unless you know that you are doing so with the permission and agreement of the person who is under it, or because it is within the bounds of your authority in Christ and is according to the leading of the Spirit. Whatever action you take, do so according to the guidance of the Holy Spirit and based on God’s counsel.

Besides this, we must also ask the Lord to release the spirit of Elijah according to His promise for the last days, on the basis of Matthew 9:37,38 – so that there would be well equipped and empowered laborers for the great harvest, which is at the end of this age (see Mt 13:39). We must seek the Lord concerning the nature of the spirit of Elijah and seek an understanding of its operation from Scripture and the revelation of the Spirit. When we see those who are walking in the spirit of Elijah, whether we recognize them as they are presently fighting the battle for the restoration of the Father Revelation to the Church and in the world, or we see that they have the potential within them and the calling to walk with the Lord in this purpose, we should pray for them to be strengthened and prepared for this mission. We should pray that God raises up the Elijahs in these last days, to contend against the spirit of bondage and the spirit of Jezebel, men and women who will not rest until the Spirit of adoption has been fully received in the Church, and the way has been prepared for the coming of the King of Kings. We should pray that they are successful in their mission, and that they are protected from the wiles of the enemy and his schemes against their lives – that they will be victorious over the spirit of Jezebel and not overcome by it.

They are unique people who will not fit into the same mold that everyone else has fit into, so they are perceived and painted as rebels and miscreants by the present system. They will have a natural dislike for caste systems and every system of bondage and control, and they will always be the number one enemy of the spirit of Jezebel and the spirit of bondage and of the leaders who are devoted to the continuation of the order governed by these spirits. Because of this, the plan of the enemy is to recognize these Elijahs as soon as possible, and then to do everything in his power to crush them and make them feel inadequate, worthless, and stupid. We must pray that they will not be lost in this relentless attack of the enemy from every direction in our culture, but that they will instead be strengthened by the opposition because of being pushed to rely even more on the power of God in their lives.
As the Lord directs us, we should do whatever we can to discern these forerunners of the Lord’s coming, to help them in every way that His Spirit leads us.

Where the spirit of bondage is concerned, we must discontinue our support of every leader and organization that operates according to a system that is in alignment with the teaching of the Nicolaitans. This does not mean that we become adversarial against them and totally reject any degree of relationship with them, but simply that we do not bring ourselves under the wrong authority of those who are actually rulers of a caste system and under a spirit of bondage, and we do not “advertise” for them in such a way that others would have the idea that things are right in their society. We should pray that the Lord would set them free from the spirit of bondage, and that He would pour out His Spirit of adoption and bring them to an understanding of the order of God’s Kingdom.

We should examine ourselves to see if we are living according to the spirit of bondage or the Spirit of adoption, and if there are still areas of our lives where we are still thinking according to its ideology as in Nicolaitan doctrine and the caste system.

And in regard to the Spirit of adoption, we must ask Him to come and fill us, and to examine and set right the foundation of our deepest beliefs, taking out everything that is false and replacing it with His truth. And we must be determined to walk in the revelation of the sonship and fatherhood, knowing who He is and who we are in Him. We should pray also according to the promise in Joel 2:27-29, that God would pour out His Spirit in these last days, and that the Spirit of adoption would be established in the midst of His people. We should do what ever we can to facilitate the move of the Spirit of adoption, following Him in all that we do so as to bring reconciliation and restoration of God’s true purpose for His Church and their leadership structure.

Throughout the Prophets, we are asked the question, “Who shall be able to stand in the day of the Lord?” (see Joe 2:11; Na 1:6; Mal 3:2; Rev 6:17). It is clear that the nations will not be able to stand (see Jer 10:10), but it is God’s intention that His people shall stand and remain established through it all (see Psalm 9:3-10; 58:10,11; Isa 3:10,11,13,14; 40:10,11; Dan 12:2-4; Mic 4:1; Mal 4:1-3).
But who is the person who can stand in the day of the Lord? What is the substance of their being that will enable them to endure? This is a question we must answer for ourselves as we strive to draw near to God and enter His rest, submitting ourselves to God to be formed into the people that will stand with Him in the end.

I believe that a crucial part of our preparation for the day of the Lord, is to understand His plan and how we fit into it in these last days. It is for this reason that I have written the things that are in this article. We need to know what God is going to do and how we are to cooperate with Him in it. And we also need all of the accompanying understanding that He is releasing to us, so that we will be able to discern between the works of the enemy and the works of God, to tear down the demonic strongholds and build up the city of God – to remove every obstacle and make straight a highway in the wilderness for our God (see Isa 40:3-5). As this was the calling of John the Baptist to go before Christ in preparing the way for Him, so it is the calling of all of the Church in these last days.

As the Prophets asked under the inspiration of the Spirit – and as I believe God is asking all of us in these last days, challenging us to set aside every hindrance, and calling us to draw near to Him – I ask you now to answer within yourself: Who shall be able to stand in the day of the Lord? Will you be ready, having His power abiding in you to stand?

Get ready; be prepared, for He is coming quickly.

And on… and on

On Friday, these hungry caterpillars ate through apples, pears, strawberries, oranges, muskmelon, and even pickles. The pickles were not on my menu (I’m not a big pickle person), but the boys must have read the book and noticed that a pickle was included in the caterpillar’s Saturday menu. Anyway… they ate through all of these foods, and guess what!!! They were still hungry!!!

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Unit Goes On.. and On and On



I have been watching Eric Carle’s videos about how he paints his pictures and other topics and checking out lots of ideas for extension activities for The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

I lay awake last night thinking of ways to incorporate caterpillar activities into our math. I came up with two games. One of them is for addition facts through 10. The other is for counting by 5’s and by 10’s.

One of the side benefits of constructing these games was that the twins got to work on their fine motor skills. I had them trace around circles and then cut them out for the parts of the caterpillar bodies. Emma even got to do some scissor work and tried to punch holes with the hole punch. It was hard for her, but she wanted to try. I’m going to have the twins do some hole punching tomorrow and probably some more cutting. I’m also going to have them play our new math file folder games!

Family Tradition: St. Patrick’s Day Meets Green Eggs and Ham

This is one of our favorite family traditions. On St. Patrick’s Day I make ham and eggs and dress it up a little with some green food coloring. We all love it! Gary probably wouldn’t be too crazy about it, but he’s always at work when I make it anyway. Kelsey helped me cook this year. It’s so nice to have some kids that are old enough to help with things like cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc.

I ran out of green food coloring, but never fear – we know that yellow and blue makes green, so we just used blue food coloring instead. There was one small problem though. The ham wasn’t yellow, so it didn’t turn green. It turned blue. But nobody seemed to care about the color; they just loved the flavor.

Emma was so cute. She ate some last year but didn’t remember it. She looked a little bit unsure of the green stuff on her plate at first. But she’s a trooper. Not much can stop her from eating. She dug in and ended up loving it.

Spirit-led Scheduling

I have 10 children from 19 mos up to 19 yo. I don’t have things down perfectly. Sometimes it feels like I can only either get school done
or get the house clean. I have a few things that have been helping me lately. I’m always working on this. One thing that has helped me get the kids to do more chores is http://www.chorebuster.net It divides the chores among the kids after I filled in the ones that needed to be done and
how often each needed to be done. It allows you to give the younger ones fewer and easier chores. But the kids accept the assignments as fair, because they know a computer assigned them, not me. And each of them gets to learn how to do each chore at their ability level. It takes some time to set it up, but then the program works automatically to assign chores each week. I have an ideal schedule made up, but we hardly ever follow it. Chores are supposed to be done right after breakfast. Then I do together school with the 6 oldest, which consists of my reading aloud to them. I do Bible and History, using books from the Sonlight reading list or other books that are related to the unit we’re studying. I pray and ask the Holy Spirit to lead our homeschooling each day, then I do pretty much whatever I think of. Without the help of the Holy Spirit, I can’t think! So whenever a plan or title comes into my mind, I figure that’s Him! I also use the Narrated Bible and Genesis: Finding Our Roots and other books that Heart of Wisdom recommends to do our Bible time. We pray together to start things off. We put our spiritual armor on first thing. I have the 10-year-old and the 8-year-old work on Phonics and Math on their own during this time.

I’ve gotten a lot of help from www.cindyrushton.com for scheduling and doing unit studies and notebooking and lapbooking. This is the schedule I used 3 years ago. I put the 4 oldest together to try to get most things done, then they did math and language arts on their own. Then I grouped the 6 and 8 year old together for some things. The twin 3-year-olds sometimes did preschool with the 6 and 8 yr. olds. They liked being teachers. Sometimes this worked, sometimes it didn’t. The older kids took turns watching the baby while I was reading to them. If the chores hadn’t been finished before school, I had them do them after school. But by that time, my husband was usually home from work, and we had to fix supper. I’m getting the older ones to help with that. And a big thing that someone suggested that really helped me was to have the older kids do their own laundry.

My 16 year old prayed about what his responsibilities should be, and he said the Lord told him to clean the dining room table every day, vacuum around the dining room table and the living room and do the dishes every day. Those are the main things that make the house look company-ready. Since he started doing these chores things have looked pretty good most of the time. If we know someone is coming, usually it doesn’t take too long to make things look pretty spiffy, by my standards! My standards aren’t very high after all these years and all these children, but I know what’s livable for us and what’s reasonable for me to expect.

I am doing school mostly with just Bible, Math and living books. It’s working for us. I feel really good about what my children are learning. We talk about relationships with others, too, and walking in love and forgiveness. Some days we just talk about what the Lord has been laying on my heart or my oldest son’s heart. But I still feel like they’re learning the most important things on those days.

We don’t have a whole lot of fellowship with others. The ones who drop in on us are single people! It’s really hard to get together with other families right now. But I consider it a season that will come to an end some day, and then we can have people over for dinner and go to others’ houses. My main ministry right now is to my own children and husband. I’ve finally accepted the fact that this is enough. God is pleased with me.

As far as crafts and nature study, I think I will take days off from the regular
schedule and devote most of a day to these extra activities.

My menu planning is: I make a list of meals for the week, make a shopping list, go grocery shopping on Sat. or Sun. and then try to remember to look at my list every day when it’s close to meal time! My husband and I go grocery shopping together. It gives me time away from the house and gives us time together.

What Does Noah’s Ark Have to Do With Going to the Moon?

(Post originally written Nov. 17, 2007)

We’ve been studying Genesis, but we’re not moving through it very fast. We keep going back to Noah and the Flood! I don’t know why exactly. I just keep finding resources about it, and they’re too good to not share with my children.

We’ve read these books:

The Secret on Ararat

by Tim LaHaye and Bob Phillips

The Heavens Before by Kacy Barnett-Gramckow

Sequel to The Heavens Before – about Nimrod and the Tower of Babel – He Who Lifts the Skies

A Rift in Time by Michael Phillips.

I had the kids watch the video In Search of Noah’s Ark.

It had the same information that was in The Secret on Ararat.

There have been so many people through the years who have seen the Ark on Ararat and have even gone onto the Ark, that it’s hard to believe that we’ve been so deceived to believe that it’s not even there.

The kids loved reading The Secret on Ararat because it was full of action and suspense. They were begging me to read more chapters. They are also loving The Heavens Before. We have really been immersed in what it must have been like in the Days of Noah. It was awful when every man’s thoughts were evil continually. It’s hard to imagine everybody in the world, except one family, being evil. How God must have grieved. And how sad and frustrated Noah must have felt to be preaching and warning all the time for 120 years and not having any converts, except perhaps for 3 women who became his daughters-in-law. Talk about an unsuccessful man! Or was he unsuccessful? I’d say he was the most successful man of his time! He sure came out on top in the end. He was the only one who survived. And he became the father and grandfather of everybody on Earth. What is the measure of your success? Obedience to what God has told me to do. That’s the measure of my success.

There are so many lessons to learn from these stories in the Old Testament. I’m amazed at the way God leads our studies. Because of our studies of Noah’s Ark, I started reading about the astronaut James Irwin. He led expeditions to Ararat to look for the Ark because of the spiritual experience he had while spending time on the moon. He felt God’s presence there with him on the moon. He came back to Earth with a new mission: to tell everyone that God is real and He loves us and we should be so thankful for this wonderful home He gave us to live on. He felt at home everywhere he went on Earth after his time on the moon.

I wonder if he felt a bit like Noah, though. I think he was pretty well-received in the churches he went to, but I wonder how the scientific world received his message. As skeptical and humanistic as the scientific establishment is, I doubt if they gave him a very warm reception. No matter that he knew as much as they did and more, having been an astronaut, and having been on the moon; they still reject his message and deny the existence of God.

Science was started by Christians. I pray that Christians can take back the ground they have lost and get the funding and the platform they need to make a difference in what is taught in public schools and in the media.

Let the Children Come… At Their Own Pace

I keep reading posts by homeschooling mothers talking about all of these learning problems that their children have. I was a first grade teacher in public school before I became a homeschooler. I wanted to do the things they taught me about in college when I started teaching in the classroom, because they made sense to me. But I couldn’t because the school had a system. They used textbooks. Everybody used the same books, and rushed every student through these books page by page. There was no time for anybody to have a learning difference. The ones who weren’t ready to read got held back in first grade. Then they suffered that stigma of “failing” first grade. I hated that. But it had to be done. That’s how the system worked. If they couldn’t handle the second grade books and program, I couldn’t send them on to suffer even more failure.

But the theories and methods I learned about in college were more about letting children do things that helped them get ready to read. The big thing at that time was whole language. We learned that we should use real books instead of textbooks. We learned that we should let them be creative instead of making them use workbooks. We were taught that we should immerse them in a topic by using unit studies, and by connecting new learning to knowledge and experience they had already attained.

I couldn’t figure out how to do any of that with all the workbooks I had to get the class through and the rigid system that was already in place. I had to do things the way all the other teachers did them. I’m sure I wouldn’t have had a job as long as I did if I had tried to stray too far from the norm. I did a few of the things that Ruth Beechick recommends long before I ever heard of her. We made lists of words that start with the same letter or have the same spelling pattern. We wrote stories together as a class. I even had them do some copywork. But mostly I had to try to rush the children through all of the books and hope they could pick it up by the end of the school year.

Now that I’m homeschooling my own children, I can do what I wanted to do all along – what I was trained to do in my education classes. I can do all kinds of pre-reading activities with my children. I can read aloud to them and take them places and point out things in nature. I can fill them up with all kinds of experiences and knowledge before I ever ask them to write anything down. I can give them something to write about, to think about, to wonder about. They can make connections in their own minds in their own time. They can look at books on their own and make the knowledge their own. I’m available to them when they want to come and share what they’ve been learning through reading or being read to or through watching a video or even sometimes through playing a video game. I’m not concerned about dyslexia or dysgraphia or any other dys- somebody might come up with next. Each of my kids is learning at his own rate and in the way the Lord wants him to, because I’m letting Him lead. I’m giving them time to grow and develop in the way He made them to. I’m so glad I don’t have to force my children to perform according to an arbitrary schedule or system set in place by people who don’t even know my children and most likely don’t know God, either. I would rather get my wisdom from my Creator than from administrators and professional educators.

I was so excited to find Susan Schaeffer Macaulay’s book For the Children’s Sake when my first child was just a toddler. Her description of Charlotte Mason’s methods sounded like the ideal way to educate children. Then I read more about Charlotte Mason and became even more convinced that God was telling me to use real, living books and to let them learn a lot from nature. I also believe in short lessons and lots of time to play. When I read Teaching Children which is like a companion book to For the Children’s Sake, I knew I was home.

I have loved our homeschooling journey. We have learned so much together as a family. And each of my children has learned so much on his own as he delves into what interests him. We use the Sonlight reading list to pick out so many very good books that have drawn us even closer together as a family as we read them together. Recently, I have discovered Cindy Rushton who has helped me pull together lots of things I couldn’t seem to figure out on my own. Notebooking has helped in our organization and in getting something on paper, so that our learning is set in place by the act of processing the information by narrating and writing about what we’ve read and learned. And even more recently I discovered Heart of Wisdom, and finally got the revelation that the Bible really is the most important thing for us to study. I used to say it was, but I didn’t know how to incorporate it into our homeschool plan. Robin Sampson has convinced me of its importance and shown me how to teach it in a way that my children will be excited about it and will really learn it because they want to. She and Cindy both encourage us to pray and find out God’s will for every detail of our homeschooling. I’m grateful for these mentors who are helping so many of us to teach our children well and love them well. And their devotion to the Lord and His Word and His will inspire me to press in and read His Word more and pray and seek His will for each of my children’s lives. Their example has helped me to set goals and define the things that are important to me and that will improve our family life.

Another author who influenced my thinking was Dr. Raymond Moore. His book, The Successful Homeschool Family Handbook, helped me to see that giving children real things to do, projects and tasks to accomplish, would produce the best learning. He believed in giving children time to mature before asking them to do academic work. He did research that showed that eye muscle development and fine motor skills develop later than 5 or 6 years old. He encouraged parents to wait and let the child’s readiness signal when to start academic work.

Pushing children to read when they’re six years old or younger, pushing them to write on the lines and make it look nice before they’re physically or mentally ready is doing those children a great disservice. And then to call this immaturity a learning problem or learning disability and to try every kind of curriculum to find the one that works for this child seems to me to be a waste of money and time, not to mention the stress and worry that this kind of thinking engenders. I just want to encourage mothers who are afraid their child may be behind to realize that there is no “behind”. All children are different, and 6 years old is not the magic age that every child should be ready to learn to read. Don’t stress. Don’t worry. Don’t fear. If you truly believe in Ruth Beechick’s teachings, Charlotte Mason’s method, Cindy Rushton and Robin Sampson’s approaches, then give your children some freedom to learn and grow and develop according to their bents, the way God made them. Relax and let God have the wheel. He knows the way.

The Hijacking of American Education

Noah Webster – one of the Founding Fathers

Our Founding Fathers wanted all Americans to be educated so that they could read the Bible and learn how to live moral, godly lives. They were trying to build a society with high morals and standards. If people learned what the Bible says, they would treat each other well. Society would benefit from less crime and not having to spend as much money on punishing criminals.

Thomas Jefferson wanted all people to have access to education. His idea was that all children should have the opportunity to be educated. He thought that families that couldn’t afford to pay for education should be able to get their children educated for free.

From David Barton and Wallbuilders.com, in a DVD called The Influence of the Bible on America, I learned that the education that most of the Founding Fathers were thinking of was biblical education. There are many quotes by the Founding Fathers about the importance of the Bible in our schools. They said that the Bible needed to be central in what was taught in the schools. The New England Primer was full of Bible verses and reading portions based on the Bible.

Patrick Henry said that “The Bible is a book worth more than all the other books that were ever printed.”

Noah Webster said, “The Bible is the chief moral cause of all that is good and the best corrector of all that is evil in human society… the best book for regulating the temporal (that is, secular) concerns of men.”

Dr. Benjamin Rush: “The Bible… should be read in our public schools in preference to all other books from its containing the greatest portion of that kind of knowledge which is calculated to produce private and public happiness.”

According to Daniel Webster: “To the free and universal reading of the Bible… men (are) much indebted for right views of civil liberty. The Bible is… a book which teaches man his own individual responsibility, his dignity, and his equality with his fellow man.”

The Puritan view of children: Children are born with a sinful nature. They must be taught and corrected or they would go in a bad direction and not become morally good people. The parents felt that it was their responsibility to train and mold them so that they would grow up to live good lives.

From Israel Wayne as he was interviewed by Cindy Rushton on Mom-to-Mom Radio Show on a program called What About Socialization?, http://blogtalk.vo.llnwd.net/o23/shows/show_512161.mp3 I learned about the shift in thinking that took place because of the writings of French and English philosophers of the Enlightenment period.

John Locke (1632-1704) believed that children are a blank slate at birth. He thought that they started with no nature or will at all – that it was all impressed on them by outside influences. This was a reaction against the Protestant view that children are born sinful and that if left to themselves, they would drift away from what is morally right. The Enlightenment philosophers tried to eradicate this idea that children are sinful at birth or moral depravity. He thought that everything they became was the result of experience and external influences acting on that child.

Jean Jaques Rousseau (1712-1778) believed that children are innately good and get corrupted by society. He put forth the idea of the “noble savage”. He thought that a child would be the pinnacle of human perfection if there was no outside influence. His views have been foundational in the way the government school system is set up today. It’s strange that people would consider him an expert on children and how to raise them. Ironically, he did not raise any children of his own. He fathered 5 illegitimate children and took them to an orphanage as infants. If he thought children were so good, why didn’t he even want his own children around? He didn’t even care to check the gender of his children. He didn’t know if his children were boys or girls. His ideas have been foundational in shaping today’s American government education.

Friedrich Froebel (1782-1852) never married and never raised children. He was the founder of the modern-day kindergarten. He shaped the system of education we have today. He thought children were being contaminated by their parents. Removing children from home as early as possible and getting them into an institutional environment was his answer. Children were bad and disobedient because they had spent too much time with their parents, so they needed to be taken from them as early as possible. The person a child spends the most time with is the person the child is most eager to please. Headstart, preschool, early day care and all of the programs that take children out of the home early and put them in an academic educational environment came out of the ideas of Friedrich Froebel. He believed they would do much better in school and have more opportunities for advancement if taken away from parents earlier.

The Puritans, influenced by Luther and John Calvin and founders of the Protestant Reformation believed that children are born with a sinful nature and need to be trained, guided, and directed by wise parents as they make the transition into adult life. They believed that this was the parents’ responsibility. The philosophers said that the problem was not the sin nature of children but the corrupting influences of parents. They were trying to rescue children from their parents.

Then the philosophers’ ideas took over and schools became a replacement for parents. They believed that they could produce children who were the pinnacle of human perfection if they had the children for long periods of time and kept them away from their parents.

So there was a shift to social education around 1840.

Horace Mann (1796-1859) established compulsory attendance. He was a Unitarian. He believed that Christianity was a scourge to the nation. He wanted to eradicate Christianity from the landscape of America. He used propaganda to convince Massachusetts parents to put children in government-run schools. He played on their fears that the Catholics would take over the education in America. Up to that time, they were mostly homeschooling or had their children in locally run schools. He wanted to gather all of the students into one government school and keep out doctrinal distinctives. He said that it would have to be made mandatory that all children be sent to a government school. There would be accountability to make sure that nobody was violating the anti-sectarian perspective. They could still talk about God, but it had to be generic. He pitched this idea to the churches, and they believed him and went along with it. The government-run schools slowly whittled away the Christian influence in the schools. It was compulsory, so the children all ended up attending schools that didn’t teach the Bible at all. They’ve all been brainwashed to believe a far different worldview than the biblical worldview that the Founding Fathers wanted to instill in the children of our nation.

This was a major paradigm shift from homeschooling and private education to government-run education.

Karl Marx (1818-1883) first used the term social education. The term social education is actually used in the Communist Manifesto. He said that we need to rescue education from the ruling middle class, meaning the parents, and stop the exploitation of children by their parents. He said we have to replace home education with social education. In order to implement their strategy, they needed to remove education from the home and replace it with social education. Marx and Horace Mann both wanted to eradicate the influence of Christianity in society. They stressed that there needed to be “access” to education for all. Making attendance mandatory in these government schools seems to be the way they guaranteed that everyone would have “access”.

William James (1842-1910) founded a philosophy called pragmatism. He believed that the end justifies the means – whatever works is right. He told teachers that the main thing they should do is shape the behavior of the students. The main goal is not to pass on information, but to shape values.

Most people think that the reason for government schools is to pass on information, but that is not really true. The real reason is to shape the students’ values.

Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936), a Russian scientist inspired by Charles Darwin, believed in biological evolution. He wrote that children could be conditioned like lab rats. His methods are used every day in schools. Children in our schools are herded from class to class by responding to bells, like Pavlov’s dog. It’s really degrading and takes away from our human dignity. They treat students like research animals. These practices do not encourage deep and involved study. They teach children to look to someone else for approval and qualification and permission for everything they do. They want to have support from others or they’re afraid to try things that they really feel called to do.

B.F. Skinner (1904-1990) believed that we are just biological machines. He introduced to the schools programmed instruction. He said that humans are like computers and can be programmed. People complained that he reduced humans to the level of machines and said that he was taking away from the dignity of humanity. In 1971, he wrote Beyond Freedom and Dignity in which he said, “Just get over it”. He said we don’t have freedom of choice or human dignity. (On a personal note, I don’t think I want to go beyond freedom and dignity.) He shared the belief that children are corrupted by parents. He put his daughter in a glass cage and only fed her with rubber gloves and utensils. He never touched her because he thought that if he held her or she was nursed by her mother, she would be contaminated and would not become the pinnacle of human perfection that he was trying to mold her into.

It seems strange that the ideas of these men were adopted by the educational establishment when they were so far from the mainstream beliefs of their times about children and child development and the needs of children.

John Dewey (1859-1952) has shaped the American government schools more than anybody else in the last 150 years. He was the father of the Progressive Education Movement. He was an avowed socialist. He signed the first Humanist Manifesto. Early in his life he had been a Christian. But when he went to college his faith was deconstructed by secular professors who taught him to deny the Christian faith and he became an agnostic or perhaps an atheist. He became a teacher of teachers at Columbia University in the 1930’s. Most people don’t know that he and two colleagues decided to change the way the schools would teach. Dewey taught teachers in the methodology they would use and the others would focus on the content of what was to be taught. They pulled three of the subjects that had previously been taught – History, Civics and Geography and replaced them with one subject that had never been taught before- Social Studies. Social as in social education, socialization, sociology… SOCIALISM. They all come from the same root. Socialism means forced equality. Government equalizes everything and makes sure that everybody has the same no matter how much work each one does. They try to get rid of rich and poor and level society so that there are no classes and everyone shares equally. Unfortunately, there has never been a class-less society come out of this system. All that happens is that the middle class is eradicated. You have a few rich and very many poor who are dependent on and subservient to the government. They wanted to teach economic socialism as a worldview in the government schools and if they could control the schools they could control the entire country. They could create a whole nation of people who would believe in Socialism. It looks like they have succeeded.

The Social Studies program was so radical that parents finally figured out what it was and had it removed from the schools in 1950. But the damage was done. Five million students had twenty years of being indoctrinated in Socialism and believing that the government is supposed to do everything for you. After World War II, when the New Deal came about, they were open to Social Security and the idea that the government should provide for their retirement. They were open to the Federal Reserve and the expansion of government in all areas of life. There was very little resistance because American students had had twenty years of being indoctrinated in a socialistic curriculum called Social Studies.

Another thing people don’t know about is that in the 1930’s there was a connection between the NEA and the government schools of Russia. In 1934, the NEA invited the Russian government to set up a booth to recruit teachers to come to Russia and learn how to teach economic socialism in the classroom and to come back and promote this kind of teaching. Thousands of American teachers went to Russia in the 1930’s and learned to teach Socialism. In 1936, the keynote speaker at the NEA convention said that Russia was the model that American schools should be patterned after, and he received a standing ovation.

This is why many senior citizens of today have a more socialistic worldview than many of us who are younger and conservative. They were taught from those socialistic textbooks back in the 1930’s through 1950.

John Dewey changed the way teachers taught. He agreed with Karl Marx that we need to get the children away from parents as early as possible and keep them as long as we can. He told teachers if they put 30 children the same age into the same room for 9 months or longer as many hours as you can get, within one year the vast majority of the students will become peer dependent. The form of the classroom will break their allegiance to their parents. Marx said “this most hallowed” allegiance must be broken if we’re going to accomplish our agenda. Pragmatism says it doesn’t matter how you do it, just do it. The peer group replaces the parents. They said things to the kids like “Don’t believe what your parents are telling you. They’re just trying to push Christianity on you.” The children told the parents and there was a backlash. So John Dewey wrote that teachers needed to be less obvious and let the herd mentality take over. Allow them to become peer dependent, then infiltrate the group and suggest a fun way to make a change that you want them to make. The number two value in life is “Be your own selfish pig”. The number one value is “Remember that you have to think of society. You don’t want to cause the species to die out.” Children are taught now that they should make up their own minds and explore, not accept what their parents say. They are taught to make decisions according to their own pleasure and for the best of society. Dewey was so effective that he broke the allegiance between parents and their children. The motivation behind creating a classroom of children all the same age as early as possible for as long as possible is to make them peer dependent which breaks the allegiance between the child and the parent. Then the teacher can infiltrate the herd and steer them any direction he wants them to go.

John Dewey said that once there is a herd mentality, children can be convinced to do anything. Look at Hitler’s youth. How could that happen? It was the view of the herd. They got to be part of the herd. This idea of socialization had its origins in the ideas of the masterminds of socialism. The reason they wanted to replace home education with social education was to break “this most hallowed of relations” between parent and child.

Dr. Dobson said ‘that a child’s sense of self-worth is determined by what the most influential person in their life thinks of them’. If that person is a warm, encouraging parent, the child will most likely have a good sense of self-worth. If it is a child’s peer group, the opinions expressed will probably be less favorable or complimentary. If the allegiance to the parent is shaken, the child will want to do whatever the substitute wants them to do. If the substitute is the peer group, they stop caring what the parents think and they stop wanting to do anything with their family and just want to hang out with their friends.

Israel then gave two examples from his personal experience of what happened to him and to a friend of his because of becoming peer dependent and then doing whatever the herd wanted them to do. Israel actually wrote out a declaration of independence from his mom when he was 12 years old and told her to get out of his life. He had previously been homeschooled, but he went to a private Christian school for sixth grade where he adopted this “independent” attitude. His friend ended up having to go to prison for first-degree murder. He killed a man because his friends told him to do it, and he didn’t know how to say no. His friends had become the most important, influential people in his life. And as John Dewey said, when a child becomes peer dependent, he can be talked into doing anything.

Here are some Scriptures that counter the view of the Enlightenment philosophers concerning the condition of a child’s heart.

Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray;

We have turned, every one, to his own way;

And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,

And in sin my mother conceived me.

Jer. 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things,

And desperately wicked;

Who can know it?

Psalm 58:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb;

They go astray as soon as they are born, speaking lies.

Here are some Scriptures that support keeping children in a warm, loving family environment instead of putting them in situations that will cause them to become peer dependent.

I Cor. 15:33 Do not be deceived: “Evil company corrupts good habits.”

Prov. 22:15 Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;

The rod of correction will drive it far from him.

Prov. 13:20 He who walks with wise men will be wise,

But the companion of fools will be destroyed.

Bad company corrupts good character. Some children can’t stand up to the enormous peer pressure they experience in school classrooms and other similarly organized groups. When they are around other immature children, they act differently than they would if they were alone. Parents should take measures to keep their children’s hearts. They should not just turn their children over to “the experts” to teach them values or to their peer group to be socialized.

The ideal of educating all of our citizens so that they could read the Bible has obviously been thrown by the wayside. The goal of the overwhelming majority of educators in our country is now to shape the values of our nation’s children and to bring them to a more progressive worldview. The goal of socialization is to cause children to become peer dependent. Then when they are peer dependent, the schools can convince them to do anything they want them to and believe whatever they tell them. These goals are directly counter to what God has commanded us as Christian parents to do with our children. We are responsible to correct, discipline, teach and direct the instruction of our children. We are the ones that God holds accountable for teaching them moral values and the Word of God.

I was very surprised to learn to what extent our American schools were influenced by Socialists. It makes me sad to think of the grand ideals that our Founding Fathers had for our schools and to see how the schools were hijacked by people who had such diametrically opposing views to what our Founding Fathers believed.

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