Monday, September 10, 2012

Organized Chaos

Mom's of many know that our lives can often look like chaos.  Ok, so maybe it is sometimes, but mostly, it is  organized chaos! There are many schools of thought and approaches to managing a home with many children - what works for one family won't work for another.  I've read tons of books and blogs on the subject over the years and have found a lot of it very helpful.  I've attempted to implement some of the strategies and they have worked while others haven't.  I am often asked "how in the world do you do all you do?" Well, honestly I have not found a great answer for this but I know this -  with God all things are possible! There are days where I know if it were not for Him, nothing would have been done. Lots of prayer and planning go into my days. 

Today I'm going to try to tell you how I manage the "chaos" of home educating 5 children.  

The first thing  I do is take a REALLY big breath. Admittedly, I tend to stress over details because I am a detail oriented person.  I'm a work in progress :)

I plan curriculum for the year in April/May of the current school year. I jot down each subject we HAVE to cover for each child the following year, then add the subjects they may WANT to learn about.  As we decide on the curriculum for each child/subject, I write it in an Excel made template I print.  I make sure to write the price for each item necessary for the curriculum.  There are often books to read that go with the core textbook, so keep that in mind when budgeting. I then add up the totals and see where we are with our budget.  Some years, we have stretched it out to make sure to fit a certain text or subject in because we felt it was important.  Other years, we have trimmed it down or found another comparable text that was less expensive. Then, I begin purchasing curriculum so that we have all of it by the end of June.  

Home Education Management Binder -

A couple years ago I set up a Home Education Management Binder for myself.  This is my brain for Home Education. I love putting things in notebooks, it is my chosen method of organization for many things.  Below is a list of tabs contained in my binder along with what I put under that tab.

The white blob is where I removed our last name :)

In the front of the binder is a School Calendar I make each year.  It has the first and last day of school listed as well as Holidays we are off and any important dates such as PSAT, ACT, SAT.  I also include the semesters for my high school age son.

Behind the calendar are monthly calendars (Aug-June)  I printed online for free. The ones I print have pictures the kids are able to color if they so choose, the younger kids like this.  On these calendars, I write the first day of school, days where there is no school, weeks (1-36), testing dates and anything that is for all the kids. Then I make a copy for each child, then I go back and write specific dates important to the individual child. Then I give each child their copy and let them color in the pictures if they want to.  They also use this as a planner to write some things in for themselves such as any sports practice, church outings, etc...

  • One tab for each child - behind this tab I use cardstock as dividers, punch holes and use the Post It Note tabs to add each subject for that year. I put my lesson plans for each subject in so I can easily refer to them when I create their assignment sheets. I will also place things such as ACT admission ticket and place in that child's tab so I won't have to hunt it when it's time to go or they won't lose it (because you know, that's never happened hahaha)
  • Reporting papers - this is where I keep master copies of the reporting sheets I turn in each year or semester for the kids.  Grades, attendance, curriculum, etc...
  • Info/Resources - this is where I keep a copy of our state laws on home education along with any other information I will want to refer throughout the year or even once a year.
  • Journaling - here I keep copies of journaling ideas I find from time to time.  I have all the younger kids keep journals each year and I give them different topics each day.  Some are silly, some serious or some just outright goofy, but they have fun and it keeps them writing and using their imaginations.
  • Assignments - this is where I keep a copy of all their assignment sheets.  Again, I make cardstock dividers using the Post It Note tabs for each of their names. I keep the most recent week directly behind the divider so I don't have to search for it.
  • Field Trips - here I keep any information on field trips we have taken or want to take that year.  If we have taken it, I type a little blurb up and put it with the information and paperclip all together so I know we've already done it. Hey, I forget a LOT more than I used to :)
  • Ideas - here I keep some information on ideas I found on another blog or received in an email or anywhere and would like to use for later.  Now, there is a LOT of neat ideas and information out there but I only print and place things in this tab that I believe I will actually use.  I will place a Post It Note on it with what my initial thoughts/ideas were as well because I've learned I forget those.

Lesson Plans -

This is probably the thing that used to kill me the most!  I have to admit I despise making lesson plans.  Yet, it must be done and organization and proper planning is essential to a smooth year for me.

I use a template from Erica at Confessions of a Homeschooler  that she uses for workboxes.  More on how we use workboxes later.  Once I receive all our books, I devote July to creating weekly assignment sheets for each child for the entire 36 weeks of school.  Yes, that sounds like a huge task but you would be amazed at how much burden this takes off throughout the school year.  This has freed up my time to focus on working with a toddler learning shapes, letters, numbers, etc... as well as taking care of my home management responsibilities I need to take care of as well.

Most of the curriculum we purchase includes lessons plans for that subject (this is totally intentional) so I simply put the information into each day on the child's assignment sheet.  I print off each child's and make a copy.  They are put into file folders, the copies all together in one for use in my binder as we get to that week and the originals are used with copies of work (see next section).

Weekly File Folders -

I use 2 sets of file folders marked with each week - week 1, week 2.....week 36.  One set is used for weekly assignments.  I make copies of anything that needs copying, then tear pages out of  any book that I can that is assigned for that week.  Then I place the assignment sheet that goes with the papers on the front and paperclip.  This way all I have to do for that week of school is place each child's assignments and papers in their boxes and I'm done with that week!  You have no idea how much a burden this took off of me when I did this!  I feel so much more freedom!!

The next set of file folders is for completed work.  Again, labeled weeks1-36- I created a grading template in Excel with all the kids subjects listed and M-F, I staple this to the front of each file folder.  On Friday's I add "turn in all work from this week" to their assignments so it goes into that weeks folder.   I grade on Friday's so I can simply grade the papers (from the previous week), mark the grade on the front and it's done.  Then every 9 weeks I do a little report card for them so they can see where they are at.  Then when it comes time to turn in grades, I am not scrambling with trying to pull it together - not that that has EVER happened! heehee!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Organizing Your Closet

Source: Unknown

No, that is not a picture of my closet!  I so wish it is like my dream closet.  However, I wouldn't have enough stuff to fill it up LOL!

It is a good picture of organization though. Everything has a place!

10 ways to organize your closet.

1.  Downsize your wardrobe - if you haven't worn it in 6 months, get rid of it!  Some people tend to freak out a little bit when I've told them that so here is a solution for you if you too got a little freaked out when you read that.  Get a small box, put the few items in there you think you will wear again in the next 6 months. Write the today's date on the box and the 6 month date you will need to get rid of everything left in the box.  If you have worn an item out of the box in the 6 months, then hang it up in your closet.  What's left at the end of 6 months, get rid of.

2.  Storage- take out seasonal clothing/accessories/shoes and store elsewhere (unless you have a large closet with space to neatly store them)

3. Contain non-hanging items - use matching baskets or bins to hold items that can not be hung.  Group like items - handbags, belts, scarves, etc...

4. Arrange folded items neatly on shelves or in baskets/bins. Places sweaters in protective bags and on a top shelf when not in season.
source: unknown

5. Use garment bags to protect suits, dresses and leather from dust and drying out.  If you do not have clear bags, take a photo of each suit, dress and leather item and tape or insert in a pocket on the front of the garment bag. This will help you quickly and easily identify the item when you want to wear it.

6. Cohesiveness - use the matching hangers to give your closet a uniform look. Also, consider selecting a less bulky hanger such as Huggable Hangers.  They really do save space.

7. Shoes - decide how you will store shoes.  Floor rack, cubbies, plastic shoe bins or original boxes.  If you choose the plastic shoe bins or original boxes, take a photo of each pair of shoes and tape to the box so you will save yourself time searching for the shoes you would like to wear.  If you have a small closet, remove seasonal footwear and store along with your seasonal clothing outside your closet.

8. Hanging clothes - organize by type and color.  Dress shirts and blouses by sleeve length and color, pants together, skirts together, etc...

9. Create a basket or specific hanging area for clothing needing to be dry cleaned. Then on the day you take dry cleaning or it is picket up, you don't have to search for it.

10. Use all the wall space in your closet - above and below the handing clothes.

Small closet organization.
 Source - Better homes and Gardens

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Get On Your Way To An Organized Life...

Do you feel like a mess in every way? 
Are you mostly neat and tidy but need help with organization? 
Do you desire to be an organized and scheduled person but have no idea where to start?
Do you start organizing your home only to get stuck and not know what to do next?

If any of the above describes you, I’m telling you now…there is hope!  I have been a pretty organized thinker and scheduled person my entire life.  However, that didn’t always translate to my surroundings.  As a kid, I was a MESS!  My parents would always have to make me clean my room because I let it get out of control and then I had a HUGE mess to clean up and didn’t know what to do with all that stuff!  As I became a teenager I craved organization and because I naturally thought in an organized fashion, I was able to be pretty orderly….then something ugly crept in – OCD or better known as CDO to those of us who have it J   you know, because the letters are in order that way! hahaha...   Anyhow, when I got married it was pretty bad, I literally would get up sometimes at night to straighten the shoes in our closet…that was messed up.  My husband would say “you’re kidding me!? Get back in bed”   I let it kind of take control of me a bit.

Well, I became a mother and that right there can cure you of some of your overly OCD tendencies!  Then, we moved and moved again, had another baby, moved again (twice in 3 months) then another baby and we accumulated more and more “stuff”.  At this point I was anything but organized and I hated it!  I KNEW I could be organized but now there was finding that time  (and energy) to be organized.  I literally spent about 2 hours sitting one day during the kids nap time and pondered how I could become the organized person I used to be... within reason.  I was still scheduled, meaning we had a regular routine we followed each day, yet there were times that were “dead” and honestly I could have been more productive.  Now, we have 5 (soon to be 6) kids ranging from 16yrs to 2yrs of age.  I am still always having to stay on top of things because that IS what mom’s do but we have a schedule, everything has a place and most of the time everything stays in its place.  It can be a daunting task to look at everything you have to do to simply maintain a neat, tidy home but then to also need to organize and de-clutter your home as well can seem so big.  This is when a schedule comes in real handy!  The best advice I can give you is, break it all down.  Break it down into small manageable chunks and it doesn’t seem so big.  On top of that, you feel a sense of accomplishment that will increase your desire to move on to the next task.

Some people like to have a step by step approach so they can follow the steps to accomplish what they need to.  I created to following steps with you in mind J

The very first thing that is so, so important is to get up before your kids and spend some time with Jesus.  Give your day to God and bathe it in prayer.  Ask God to bless your day, to give you strength to accomplish all you desire for your day, to give you wisdom to know when to stop if you need to. We can do nothing without Him and everything with Him!  The days I have done this have gone so much better than the days I have skipped it wanting a few more winks of sleep.

Next step, make a plan!  This step is two fold.
First, you must make a plan of attack.  List the rooms/places that need to be organized and be specific.  I would list by priority. You can then cross off as you complete each item on your list!
 Next, create a schedule for your day.  Think about how your days go now.  What is your routine? Do you tend to eat breakfast at the same time each day? Wash laundry at a specific time? Nap time?   Keep it simple at first, as you become confident,  you can always add or change if necessary.  Post it somewhere you will constantly see it throughout the day. 

Here is a sample schedule for you:

6:00am wake up/ wash face/get dressed/ make bed/devotions & prayer time
7:00am start load of laundry/wake kids/start breakfast/eat breakfast
7:45am clean up after breakfast/switch laundry/take out anything for dinner or start crock pot dinner
8:00am morning chores
9:00am spend 15 minutes decluttering current project
9:15am spend time with kids
9:45am fold & put away laundry/switch laundry
10:00am complete any morning chores needed
11:00am spend 15 minutes relaxing
11:15am make lunch
11:30am eat lunch
12:00pm clean up after lunch
12:30pm fold & put away laundry
1:00pm nap/quiet time
1:30pm work on a small project you can’t do with kids around
3:00pm kids up from nap/snack time
3:30pm rescue the hotspot areas
4:30pm start dinner
5:30pm eat dinner
6:30pm clean up after dinner
7:00pm bath time
8:00pm kids bed time/tidy any areas needed lay out clothes for next day/lay out anything for breakfast that won’t spoil/shower
8:45pm spend time with hubby
9:30pm sleep

Here is a word of caution in your scheduling.  The above is just a sample.  You will need to make a schedule specific to your situation.  You may have a nursing baby that dictates a lot of your schedule, give yourself time to nurse and nap when everyone else is napping.  It is most important that you take care of you during this time as well as your child. This is a season of life and will soon pass, enjoy it and give yourself permission to take a break. Inevitably there will be interruptions in your day – be flexible and know it isn’t the end of the world if your schedule is not followed completely.  Maybe, like me you assign your older children to wash their own laundry, well then you may not need to put laundry on your schedule for every day.  Keep that in mind, don’t hold yourself to someone else’s standards or schedule.  Make one that works for you and you feel you can follow or you will end up burned out and give up altogether.  Also, I have often re-worked my schedule.  As your kids grow older things change in your home and so you have change your schedule.  Know that at some point you too, will need to change up your schedule.  

Ok.  Those  are the first few steps.  Tomorrow, I will share tips on organizing a closet.
Until then here is a challenge for you this week. Make a list of the areas you want to organize in your home and create a schedule that works for you! 

Please feel free to ask any questions you have.


Thursday, May 31, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 31

Lord, I pray my husband will love righteousness and hate wickedness, especially the evils of our culture. I pray that he will recognize and avoid wickedness in his own life and if necessary, take a clear, strong stand against evil.

"A prudent man forsees evil and hides himself, but the simple pass on and are punished." Proverbs 27:12

"I pray not that you should take them out of the world, but that you should keep them from evil" John 17:15

"Wherefore let him that thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.  There has no temptation taken you but such as is common to man, but God is faithful who will not suffer you to be tempted above what you are able, but will with the temptation akso make a way to escape, that you may be able to bear it." 1 Corinthians 10:12-13

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 30

Lord, I pray my husband will grow in leadership skills in our relationship - protecting and providing for us.  I pray he will lead us wisely and love us sacrificially so that God will be glorified in our marriage.

"For husbands, this means love your wife just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her. To make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God's word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault.  In the same way, husbands ought to love wives as they love their own bodies.  For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it just as Christ cares for the church." 
Ephesians 5:25-29

"Husbands, love your wives and never treat them harshly" Colossians 3:19

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Becoming A Proverbs 31 Woman


The book pictured above - The Proverbs 31 Woman One Virtue At A Time, is free.  All you have to do is subscribe here, you will receive daily emails and the link to download the book is at the bottom of the emails.  Additionally, you can participate or lead a group study based on this book.  You can download the study guide, reading plan and a leaders guide here.  I am excited to complete my reading of the book.  Many of us think becoming a Proverbs 31 woman is unattainable.  I know I did.  God is changing my heart about that.  It is only with His strength we are able to become who He wants us to be.

Taken from the Women Living Well website-

Here’s what the eBook includes:
Table of Contents
Is the Proverbs 31 Woman For Real?
How to be Treasure to Your Husband
Does Your Husband Trust You?
A Woman of Action
Working With Eager Hands
Shop to the Glory of God
The Proverbs 31 Woman Rises Very Early
Do You Have a Dream?
Vigorously Clean Your Home & Get a Bonus Workout
Burning the Midnight Oil
Mundane Tasks Are a Hidden Treasure
P.S. Your Hands Are Beautiful
Are You Prepared for the Weather Changes?
The Proverbs 31 Woman is Classy
Help Your Husband be a Man of Influence
Pursuing Excellence
Let Me Help You Pick Out Your Clothes
Putting Order on Your Tongue
Managing Our Time, Family and Home
What Do Your Children Think of You?
Be the Woman Your Man Needs
The Proverbs 31 Woman’s Beauty Secret
Pity or Praise the Proverbs 31 Woman?


31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 29

source: etsy

Lord, I pray that my husband will recognize the lies of the enemy in his life.  I pray that his attitudes and actions will be guided by the truth as he brings his thoughts into captivity to the Word of God.

"For you are the children of your father the devil and you love to do that evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning.  He has always hated the truth because there is no truth in him. When he lies it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies." John 8:44

"We use God's mighty weapons, not the worlds weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ." 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

Monday, May 28, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husband - Day 28

Lord, I pray that my husband will serve you and others with pure motives. I pray that he will obey You from his heart and glorify Him in everything.

"The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted He will show you a way  out so that you can endure." I Corinthians 10:13

"Anyone who wants to do that will of God will know whether my teaching is from God or is merely my own. Those who speak for themselves, want to glory only for themselves, but a person who seeks to honor the one who sent him speaks truth, not lies." John 7:17-18

"Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you are working for the Lord rather than people. Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward and that the Master you are serving is Christ." Colossians  3:23-24

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 27

Lord, I pray that my husband will surrender his time and talents to you.  I pray that his spiritual gifts will be manifest i his career, at church and in our home.

"So be careful how you live. Don't live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days." Ephesians 5:15-16

"There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all.  A spiritual gift is given to all of us so we can help each other" I Corinthians 12:4,7

Saturday, May 26, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 26

Lord, I pray my  husband will be a man of prayer.  I pray he will seek and pursue You, God in purposeful quiet times.

"Never stop praying" I Thessalonians 5:12

" "Why are you sleeping?" He asked them.  "Get up and pray so that you will not give in to temptation" " Luke 22:46

"Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results." James 5:16

Friday, May 25, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 25

Lord, I pray that my husband will understand the importance of taking care of his body - the temple of the Holy Spirit - for Your glory.  I pray that he will practice self-control by making wise food choices and get enough exercise to stay healthy.

"And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice - the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him." Romans 12:1-2

"Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself for God bought you with a high price. So you much honor God with your body" I Corinthians 6:19-20

"I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after praching to others I myself might be disqualified" I Corinthians 9:27

Photo Credit

Thursday, May 24, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 24

Lord, I pray that my husband will discover and live his God-given purpose.  I pray that he will offer all his dreams to the Lord and pursue on those goals that bring You glory and count for eternity.

"For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and hope" Jeremiah 29:11

""So whether you ear or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the Glory of God" I Corinthians 10:31

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

16 Ways To Show Your Husband Love and Respect

I came across this list a while back and have wanted to share with  you all.  There are some neat ideas to share.  I'm sure you could come up with even more to add to your list.  Have fun!


31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 23

Lord, I pray my husband will be courageous in his stand against evil and injustice and that he will stand for truth.  I pray he will protect our family from Satan's attacks.

"So be strong and courageous, all you who put your hope in the Lord!" Proverbs 31:24

"Therefore, put on every piece of God's armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil.  Then after the battle you will be standing firm" Ephesians 6:13

"Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous.  Yes, wait patiently for the Lord." Proverbs 27:14

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 22

Lord, I pray my husband will have a balanced life - that he will balance work and play. I pray that he will fear you God, but also gain favor with people he knows at church and work.

"And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and men" Luke 2:52

"Good understanding produces favor, but the way of the treacherous is hard" Proverbs 13:15

Ladies - Thank you for your understanding this morning.  My internet went out yesterday and I ended up on the phone with technical support for over an hour this morning.  I'm sorry the post was late. Blessings!

Monday, May 21, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 21

Lord, I pray my husband will be a good father - disciplining his children wisely and loving them unconditionally.  If he is not a father, I pray he will find a young man to mentor in things of the Lord.

"Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes form the Lord." Ephesians 6:4

"Fathers, do not aggravate your children or they will become discouraged" Colossians 3:21

"Timothy, my dear son, be strong through the grace that God gives you in Christ Jesus. You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to opass them on to others." 2 Timothy 2:1-2

Sunday, May 20, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 20

Lord, I pray my husband will practice forgiveness in our relationship and with others.  I pray he will recognize any roots of bitterness and yield any resentment and unforgiving attitudes to the Lord.

"Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you." Ephesians 4:32

"Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many." Hebrews 12:15

Saturday, May 19, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 19

Lord, I pray my husband will yield his mind and thoughts to you.  I pray he will not entertain immoral or impure thoughts and that he will resist the tempation to indulge in setting unholy images before his eyes.

"A prudent person forsees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and sufferes the consequesnces" Proverbs 27:12

"We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ" 2 Corinthians 10:5

Friday, May 18, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 18

Lord, I pray my husband will be patient and a man of peace. I pray he will not give in to anger but will allow the Holy Spirit to control his responses.

"So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up" Romans 14:19

"Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace and work to maintain it" Psalm 34:14

Thursday, May 17, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 17

Lord, I pray that my husband will have an eternal perspective - living in the light of eternity. I pray that he will reject materialism and temporal values and put God first in his life.

"Seek the Kingdom of God above all else and live righteously and He will give you everything you need" Matthew 6:33

"And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength." Deuteronomy 6:5

" Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days" Ephesians 5:16

"Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom" Psalm 90:12

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 16

Lord, I pray my husband will enjoy his manliness as he patterns his life after Christ and strong men in the faith.  I pray for his physical, emotional, mental, social and spritiual strength.

"I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through His spirit."  Ephesians 3:16

"For God called you to do good and endure it patiently, God is pleased with you. He is your example and you must follow His steps." 1 Peter 2:21

"These things happend to them as examples for us.  They were weritten down to warn us who live at the end of the age." 1 Corinthians 10:11

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 15

Lord, I pray that my husband will choose healthy, God honoring activities.  I pray he will not live in bondage to any questionable habits or hobbies but that he will expereince freedom in holiness as he yields to your Spirit's control.

"You say "I am allowed to do anything", but not everything is good for you. And even though "I am allowed to do anything", I must not become a slave to anything."  I Corinthians 6:12

"Soldiers don't get tied up in the affairs of civillian life, for then they cannot please the officer who enlisted them." 2 Timothy 2:4

"Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body" I Corinthians 6:19

Monday, May 14, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 14

Lord I pray my husband will choose his friends wisely.  I ask You to bring men into his life that will encourage his accountability before God and won't lead him into sin.

"Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble" Proverbs 13:20

"As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend." Proverbs 27:17

Sunday, May 13, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 13

Lord, I pray that my husband will speak words that build up our children and myself.  I pray his words will reflect a heart of love.  I pray that he will not use filthy language.

"The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences." Proverbs 18:21

"Don't use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your wrods will be an encouragement to those who hear them." Ephesians 4:29

Saturday, May 12, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 12

Lord I pray the my husband will use practical skills to build our family.  I pray he will make wise decisions for our well-being.  I pray that he will serve unselfishly.

"For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters, but don't use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve on another in love." Galations 5:13

"Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don't look our only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too." Phillipians 2:3-4

Friday, May 11, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 11

Lord, I pray that my husband will yield his manly desires to You and practice self control.  I pray our intimacy together will be fresh, positive and a reflection of selfless love.

"Drink water from your own well - share your love only with your wife. Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth" Proverbs 5:15, 18

"I am my lover's and he claims me as his own." Song of Solomon 7:10

Today's tip: In the days of young children and stressful jobs- it is so important to slow down and make a date.  With 5 children we often are unable to actually go out on a date.  So, we have a home date (what I call it) I feed the kids earlier than usual, get the younger ones in bed and allow the older kids to be in their rooms until their bedtime.  I make a nice dinner for us to share.  Light some candles, play music...make it a stress free zone.  We have agreed certain topics are off limits - children, work, finances.  Sometimes we watch a movie, sometimes we just talk. It is nice to put aside time to just sit next to each other and even hold hands!  We both look forward to this time together!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 10

Lord, I pray my husband will have a humble, teachable spirit and a servant's heart before you.  I pray he will listen to you, God and desire to do your will.

"The fear of the Lord teaches wisdom and humility precedes honor" Proverbs 15:33

"Try to please them all the time, not just when they are watching you. As slaves of Christ, do the will of God with all your heart:" Ephesians 6:6

Idea for today: Have a humble, teachable heart and spirit with your hubby. I can testify that this change in your own spirit will produce a wonderful dynamic within your relationship with your husband but also with Christ.  It is often hard to allow ourselves to be vulnerable.  I have learned that in that vulnerability - especially with my hubby- is one of the greatest places I can be and brings so many wonderful rewards.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 9

Lord, I pray that my husband will cultivate strong integrity and not compromise his convictions.  I pray his testimony will be genuine, that he will be honest in his business dealings and will never do anything that he needs to hide from others.

"The just man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him" Proverbs 20:7

"Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart and of a good conscience and of faith unfeigned" I Timothy 1:5

"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armour of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Ephesians 6:10-12

Idea for today: Thank your husband for his positive character qualities.  Is he honest, compassionate, responsible?  Thank him for that!  If you have a husband who is lacking in positive character qualities pray extra hard for God to show you something you can thank your husband for.  Often our husbands have struggles we are unaware of and they don't want to share those.  I came across a blog post from Clayton King.  He is a very powerful pastor I heard speak at a Youth Conference.  The post tells us the 10 things our husbands want us to know...I think it is a good read.  After several years of marriage, I realized everything I  thought I knew...I didn't know.  One thing I do know - from personal experience - I need to be who God wants me to be, as a wife, mother, friend, daughter, etc... PERIOD!  End of story.  When I surrendered myself to that, things began to change.  I was guilty of often thinking others needed to change, when in fact, it was me.  Look inward, become who God calls you to be and see what a wonderful difference it makes in your marriage!  Sorry for the mini sermon.  Blessings to you all!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 8

Lord I pray the my husband will handle finances wisely, that he will have discernment concerning budgeting and investments and will be a good steward of his money in regard to giving to the Lord's work.  I pray that money will not become a source of discord in our family.

"Labor not to be rich: cease from your own wisdom. Will you set your eyes on that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven." Proverbs 23:4-5

"Distributing to the necessity of the saints; given to hospitality" Romans 12:13

"Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content in the things you have; for God has said, "I will never leave you or forsake you" ". Hebrews 13:5

Idea for today: Make meal planning a part of your life.  This planning not only helps you but it helps reduce the cost of groceries and that helps your husband be a good steward! :)

Monday, May 7, 2012

31 Days of Praying For Our Husbands - Day 7

Lord, I pray that my husband will work hard to provide for our family, to the best of his ability.  I pray the character qualities necessary for a successful career and ministry will be a growing part of his character - persistence, decisiveness, strength, an analytical mind, organizational skills, positive relationships with people determination, integrity, etc..

"Not slothfulness in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord" Romans 12:11

"Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that the labour is not in vain in the Lord." I Corinthians 15:58

Sunday, May 6, 2012

31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands - Day 6

Lord, I pray my husband will safeguard his heart against inappropriate relationships with the opposite sex.  I pray his heart will be pure and undivided in his commitment to me, his wife.

"For their command is a lamp and their instruction a light; their corrective discipline is the way to life.  It will keep you from the immoral woman, from the smooth tongue of a promiscuous woman." Proverbs 6:23-24

"Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don't let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires." Romans 13:14

Idea for today -  Seeing that today is Sunday, you may want to use this another day if you hubby doesn't work today.  Greet your hubby at the door with a big kiss, hug and a glass of iced tea, lemonade or soda if he prefers.  Sometimes our guys have had a particularly stressful day and we may not know it but this could be just the thing to lift his spirits when he walks in the door.  Let him spend 15 minutes or so catching up with the kids while you get dinner on the table.  Then after dinner get the kids off to bed so you all can have time to catch up. I have found this helps the kids feel they have been able to share all they wanted to with daddy and go to bed easier.  Then we don't have to up and down as much.  

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Single Ladies - Please Join Us

A dear friend who is single asked me "Can I join you and pray for my future husband?"  What a great idea!  If God has not brought your mate into your life yet, join us in prayer and pray for your future husband.  Once you are married, you can continue to pray for him and I know God will do wonderful things for your marriage relationship.

Blessings to all you single ladies as you wait on God to bring the special man He has for you. I will be praying for each of you that God would prepare your future husband's and your hearts for a lifetime of love and dependence on God.

31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands - Day 5

Lord, I pray my husband will be faithful to his wedding vows.  God I pray that he will have a desire to cultivate your relationship as a sign of his loyalty and commitment to you and as a picture of Christ's love for the Church.

"Many will say they are loyal friends, but who can find one who is truly reliable?" Proverbs 20:6

"This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one" Genesis 2:24

Idea for today: Starting today and for the rest of this series, practice saying only uplifting things to your husband.  If something negative creeps up and you feel you are about to say it...walk away and take a breath.

**Just a little note - These ideas I offer are things I have done that have made a difference in my own marriage.  I have seen how positively they affect your relationship. I am praying for each of you as we go through this together.  I know God will bless each one of you in  your life and relationship.  This is a wonderful investment in our husbands.  It is amazing how much deeper you can love someone when you pray for them. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands - Day 4

Lord, I pray my husband will be humble and quick to agree with God about his sin.  I pray that his heart will be tender toward your voice Lord.

"Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin. For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night. Again you and you alone have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. You will be proved right in what you say and your judgment against me is just." Psalm 51:2-4

Idea for today:   Find something you can say or do that would build your husband up.  Maybe mowing the lawn for him so he didn't have to or taking the garbage out for him.  Do something that would remove a burden.  Just remember...  Don't be your husband's conscience.  It isn't our job to point out their faults and failures, they already know and have already kicked themselves for it enough.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

31 Days of Prayer for Our Husbands - Day 3

Lord, I pray that my husband will learn how to relax in you and in his greatest times of stress, find joy and peace in his relationship with you.  I pray that he will submit his schedule and finances to you.

"...Don't be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!" Nehemiah 8:10

" A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a persons strength" Proverbs 17:22

"You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever" Psalm 16:11

Idea for today: Offer to do something he likes to do like watch a football game, go fishing, play golf...something fun! Better yet, just schedule it and ask him out on a date!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands - Day 2

Pray that your husband's relationship with God and His Word will bear fruit in his life. Pray that he will be a man of wisdom and understanding, fearing the Lord.

"Don't be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the Lord and turn away from evil."  Proverbs 3:7

"Fear of the Lord is the foundation of Wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment." Proverbs 9:10

"Praise the Lord! How joyful are those who fear the Lord and delight in obeying His commands" Psalm 112:1

"If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you asking." James 1:5

"May God give you more and more grace and peace as you grow in your knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord." 2Peter 1:2

Idea for today - Write your hubby a little note thanking him for all he does. Maybe he sacrifices a lot for you and your family, thank him for that.  Thank him for being the leader of your home, for being loving, helping around the house...anything you can think of.  Leave it on his pillow for him to find tonight.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands - Day 1

Pray that our husbands will grow spiritually and consider his accountability before the Lord.  Pray that he will guard his heart by developing spiritual disciplines like Bible reading and study, prayer, meditation, scripture memorization, etc...

"But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen" 2 Peter 3:18

"Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life." Proverbs 4:23

This series is inspired by Revive Our Hearts article on Praying for Your Husband.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Encouragement for the Day

As we prepare for 31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands, I  want to encourage you.

Today I am saying a prayer for you.

I pray you will make right any wrongs you need to address to allow for open communication between you and God.

I pray God will remove distractions from your path that would interfere with your prayer time for your husband.

I pray that over these 31 days your relationship with God will strengthen as well as your relationship with your husband.

I pray God will lift up your spirit each morning and give you the strength and energy you need to accomplish everything you need to just for today.

Finally, I want to encourage you to keep a journal of these days.  Some ideas for what to put in your journal are:

  • Each days prayer for your husband.
  • Your own personal prayer for your husband with specifics.
  • Scripture you are reading that impacts you.
  • Ideas for other ways you can be an encouragement to your husband.
  • The blessings you witness from your prayers.

I look forward to this journey with you all.

Many Blessings,

Thursday, April 26, 2012

She Does Him Good...

"She does him good and not harm all the days of her life" Proverbs 31:12

Ladies, Satan is attacking our husbands!  He wants to destroy their character, leadership, minds and hearts.  Let's cover them in prayer.  Let's trust them, our marriages and families to God and see the great things He will do.

Join me, beginning May 1st as we begin a series 31 Days of Praying for Our Husbands.

If you plan to join us, please find us on facebook and "like" our page or comment below.

You can also send email to:

Have a blessed day!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

"No One Cares What I Do Around Here"

She yelled those words out.  Hot tears ran down her face as she ran off into another room.  She was nearly shaking from how upset she was.  They didn't seem to care how hard she had worked cleaning, washing, organizing the cupboards, cooking meals and making this house nice for everyone.  She was angry...really angry.

As she began to pray and ask God for help to get through to the loved ones in her home (because you know, it was all them) she felt like God  literally picked her up, sat her down and spoke to her as audibly as if He were standing right in front of her.  "My child, do you not remember what I said in My word?" Colossians 3:23 "Work willingly at whatever you do, working for the Lord rather than people" WHAT? God! I am doing it for you but I'm doing it for them too!  She literally felt like God took her arm and gave "that look" -you know, the one every child never wants to see from their parent?..yeah, that one.  She knew God was right, if she had been doing it just because she was supposed to strive to be a Proverbs 31 woman she would not react so poorly when someone didn't respect what she had done. 

As I sat there reeling from the very vivid conversation I had just had with God in my room, I realized I had some changes to make in myself.  I admit, I struggle with this one.  I love organization, I make everything orderly in the cabinets, on the shelves, in the fridge and because my love languages are acts of service and words of encouragement, I feel that if my children keep things that way they are loving me. In reality, I was focused on the wrong things. My expectations were wrong.  Sadly, most of the reasons I get upset about things like this is because my focus was on the wrong thing.  I feel a lot of problems we experience in life could be alleviated by having our focus where it needs to be.  I was upset because I had worked hard to clean and organize everything the way I wanted it and I felt wronged because they didn't seem to care what I had done.  In my mind, kids should recognize how much work goes into doing these kinds of tasks.

As I thought it through, I wondered how many times God could feel this way.  He sacrificed His ONLY son so we don't have to burn in hell forever.  How many times does He have to teach me the same lesson, how many times does He convict me of something before I change it?  What kind of example was I being to my kids?  I teach them to react in with a soft answer like Proverbs tell us but is that what I'm living?   Oh how patient God is with me!  If He can be this patient, loving and merciful to me and if He is my example of what a parent should be....WOW!  I have some work to do.  Not around the house, in my heart and life.

Then I was given an opportunity to live out some change not long after I was convicted to allow God to change me.  I felt like God just lived it through me.  Instead of getting upset inside - ok, for a fleeting moment I was irritated, I quickly thought to myself, thank you God for the opportunity to serve my family.  Thank you for a house to clean and cabinets to organize.  I have to admit, I felt better about it after that.

This was a very rough lesson God showed me.  I had no idea the ways I would be tested to live this commitment of change out.  When you ask God to help you change....LOOK OUT! He will give you the tests necessary to mold you into what you need to be.  Although not easy to go through at the time, it is always worth it in the end.  

I am not going to say that I have conquered this battle at all!  I have been working on it pretty hard.  There have been times I have literally felt I would bite my tongue off...but, God has really helped me focus more on my own response. Now, lets pray that I will continue to give this to the Lord because it is the only way I will be changed. It is not through my own power but with HIS strength I am able.

Care to share any lessons you've learned?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Make Time For Fun

I admit it...I stink at making time for fun.  I am way to practical and because I am used to dealing with a child who can not handle spontaneity, I feel I have lost that part about me that I used to love so much and one of the reasons my husband fell in love with me. Wow, that was what I think you'd call a run on sentence. Anyway...  So I came across this cute little calendar.  It's called "My Fun Calendar".  Made just to schedule fun time!  How awesome is that?  What's better is that it's FREE!!  So if you are like me and need to put some fun back into your life or maybe you just love organization like I do...go grab this up and start scheduling some fun into your life!!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Silent Thief

What a great blog post!  Admit it ladies, we ALL fall prey to feelings of inadequacy. There are only 10 unchangeables in life and the way we think about ourselves is not one of them! Comparing ourselves to another will always make us come out better or worse. We tend to find what we look for. I hope all of you will look for the beauty inside you that the Lord has given you! Lord I pray for each wife, mom...woman that you will help her see herself how YOU see her...BEAUTIFUL & LOVED!!! Blessings my friends!

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