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Sue S.

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About Sue S.

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    Registered User

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  • Biography
    Born-Again Christian for 10 yrs., Home Schooler for 7 years

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  • Location
    Minneapolis, MN

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  • Occupation
    41 yr. old Home School Mom
  1. Carla: If all the couples don't know each other, you can do the old slap a name tag on the back and have the wearer guess who she is. It's a good mixer game. For my daughter's birthday we secretly gave each girl the name of a character in a series of books (which each guest had read) on which the theme of the party was based. At the beginning of the party, I put a sticky name tag on each girl's back. Her job was to discover what charater she was by asking only "yes" or "no" questions. After asking one person a question, the guest had to move on and ask the next question of another guest. You can decide on character names based on your particular theme. Another fun game is to pass out 3" x 5" cards. Have each guest secretly write on his/her card a fact which no one else knows about him/her and his/her name. When I played this game at a summer camp with other staff, some of the facts were, "I used to own and ride a Harley," I was once almost kidnapped as a child," etc. You get the picture. Anyway, you collect the cards. You select one card at a time to use, and you select 3 people, including the writer of the card, to sit on a panel. The rest of the guests ask each person questions to try to determine which person wrote out the card. You really learn some interesting things about your guests with this game. You also find out which guests are good liars. LOL. Happy Thanksgiving! Sue S.
  2. I don't have a dog, however, three of my friends cage their dogs at night. The pups seem to like having their own comfortable space, and they have the peace of mind of knowing that they won't wake up to messes. I think all these friends have trained in their dogs as pups to accept this procedure. I hope this helps. Sue S.
  3. Amanda: I think that there are more people who are in agreement with you than you realize. The history of Halloween aside, there really isn't anything positive about that celebration. I heard once from a police source that Halloween is the day when a child is most likely to be abducted. Now there's a ray of sunshine. Police also recommend keeping your black cats and dogs indoors for a few days before and after because there is an increased risk of them being stolen and killed. When parents encourage their kids to trick-or-treat, they're really encouraging greed and gluttonly. Now I know that these two things are like baseball and apple pie to Americans, but do parents really need to encourage that sort of thing? The fact that parents have to have candy x-rayed before allowing their kids to eat it says a lot about the darkness of the day. Until just this year, our church has pretty much ignored the existence of Halloween. Our pastor once told me that he didn't feel Christians should even acknowlege its existance. We have a new Children's pastor this year who put together a spectacular Western Family Fun Night. It was well attended and a lot of fun. There were over 60 booths, candy and Christian music playing in the background. The kids received bags with Bible tracks and treats. There wasn't a hint of Halloween except that most people dressed in western attire. For those of us with unsaved friends and neighbors, celebrations like these are an easy way to get them into a church and introduce them to Christianity in a fun, nonthreatening way. I applaud you for being sensitive to God's leading in your life. Never be afraid to speak the truth in love. Sue S.
  4. Shawna: I'm right there with you. I have the exact same struggle with Bible study and exercise. I was able to get up early, do my Bible study and then work out for about a week. (I have a friend who gets up at 5:30 a.m. and has a 1 1/2 hr. quiet time. She was my inspiration. She also homeschools her 6 children--2 of her own and 4 she's adopted-- the 3 youngest from Russia. Anyway, what was I thinking!?!). Unfortunately, here in MN (at this time of the year) at 5:45 a.m. it's pitch black outside. Not being a morning person to begin with, it didn't take much to motivate me to snuggle in bed for another hour. By that time, the kids are up, and the day has already started without me. My new strategy is to do my quiet time whenever I get up which is usually between 7:00 and 7:30 a.m. It's non-negotiable. Since I have a cup of tea about 3:30 p.m. anyway, I'm still zipping along at 6:30 or 7:00 p.m. which is when I have committed to work out. Since working out is not my idea of a good time, I've enlisted my husband and two kids to keep me honest. My husband knows that when I work out, I am healthier and have a better attitude...just like him, so he's pretty good about helping out. I've also realized that I just don't have the time for a terminator workout. Therefore, I have committed to doing the minimum amount of exercise to keep my body functioning properly and my attitude healthy (either 30 minutes of treadmill or five short, basic weight-training exercises). For weight loss the thing that's worked best for me is eliminating small things. For example, just completely cut out butter or margarine. When you've gotten past that for about a month, cut out pop or whatever other single item sabotages a healthy diet. You'd be surprised how small changes make a huge difference. I've also finally accepted that I'm a 41 yr. old mother of two. I have two very good reasons why my behind and back thighs are on a first-name basis. Which, by the way, is a good point. You may notice that I'm 41 yrs.old. In hind sight, when my kids were small, I didn't have the time or energy to exercise. I mostly just felt bad about being out of shape. It was a no-win situation. I hope you're not doing that. In Christ! Sue S.
  5. Hi Wendy: You might think my advice is a little strange, but I'm tell'n ya, it works. My husband and I had gotten to that same point...no romance. We were pretty much on automatic for a loooooong time. I was very sad. Then I decided to pray and ask God to "restore the years the locusts have eaten" in our marriage. I asked that God would bind our hearts together with bonds of love that were so strong that they would never be broken. Well, you get the picture. I am telling ya girls, prayer works! I'm not saying that my husband and I should write any books or anything, but God wants us to live abundantly. You know, we always wait until we've exhausted our other options before turning to God. Why not check in with Him first and save ourselves a lot of window shopping? I also agree that making time for each other can really open the door...as long as you don't just talk about the kids. In Christ! Sue S.
  6. Sue S.

    Santa

    We decided right off the bat not to do the Santa thing. Our reasoning also was that we didn't want to lie to our kids. They've never missed him. We have so many fun holiday traditions (making cookies & gingerbread houses, seeing a holiday play as a family and eating out, etc.) that it has never occurred to them that they're missing out on any fun. Also, there's something a little pathetic about, say, a nine-year-old who still believes in Santa when his peers already know it was all a hoax. How embarrassing when he discovers that everyone was in the know but him. This happened to my husband's nephew. We explained to our kids that because we will never lie to them, we couldn't possibly give in and lie about Santa. Because once you tell one lie, inevitably a parent must tell another and another to keep the story going. We've never regretted being honest with our kids. They know their presents come from Jesus via relatives because all blessings come from God. In Christ! P.S. Wonka2--How true! Sue S.
  7. Dear Unregistered: I'm sorry that you feel judged and rejected. It's a basic need for all people to feel loved and accepted. And I know how you feel right now...I've been there. I'm going to try to explain this in a way that I hope won't make you feel more alienated. You may think that being involved in Wicca is nothing more than a life choice, like personal style. How we live our lives IS our own choice. The problem is, we very often aren't aware of the consequences of our choices until a lot of damage has been done. What you are dabbling in isn't just some feel-good exercise. Now, I know that you don't care to hear any Bible verses, but the Bible does say that we have two choices. Either we serve the God of the universe or we serve Satan. There's no in between. Satan is God's defeated foe. He knows his time is limited on this earth. Jesus is coming back and Satan's headed for a much warmer climate. Satan hates mankind because we are made in the image of God...his arch enemy. Satan's goal is to take as many of us with him at the end as possible. However, God loves us so much that He made a way of escape for us. He sent his Son, Jesus, to take all our sins. All God asks is that we ACCEPT Jesus' free gift of salvation. If we do, then we're home free. We don't have to fear death. In fact, we don't have to fear anything because God says that He will never leave us or foresake us. That's it. Simple, right? Except that we have an enemy who is far superior to us in intelligence and experience, and is motivated by an undying hatred of God, and he's going to take as many of us down as he can. Think of it this way, if you're a parent and someone wanted to inflict the most emotional hurt upon you, what would that person target? As a mom I can tell you, our children. Well, that is just what Satan is doing. He's going after God's most precious possessions. Most of us walk around thinking that the things we can perceive with our senses are the real world. What we don't comprehend is that what we don't see, the spiritual realm, is where the real action is at. Satan doesn't have to turn you into a satanist to keep you out of Heaven. All he has to do is distract you from the One True God. All he has to do is to get you to accept some other counterfeit god. By accepting another, you unknowingly reject Jesus' free gift of salvation. And that, my dear, is what has us all in an uproar. You say, "That's not fair!" No, it isn't. The Bible says that Satan comes to "steal, kill and destroy!" What you have is a bunch of Christian moms out here who see the fox in the henhouse of your life. What we know, and you don't yet, is that Satan is going to do more damage than you can possibly imagine before you get wise to what's up. What's worse, you will not be the only one to suffer through this. "The sins of the fathers are passed down to the third and fourth generations..." In the spiritual realm, the choices you are making now will really hurt your children. You would not believe the war that I have fought to free myself from the sins of my fathers (ancestors). Honey, I'm not mad at you, but I am TICKED that that lying, scheming, uncreative snake is at it again, preparing the way to destroy another precious life. YOU ARE PRECIOUS! You have been created by God for a purpose! You are someone special, and you fit into God's plan. If you want to continue on the path of Wicca, that's a choice only you can make. But, you owe it to yourself to know all the facts. As a mom I just ask that you take the time to find out who Jesus really is. Don't judge Jesus by people who call themselves Christians. Jesus said that you'll know us by our fruit. "A bad tree cannot bear good fruit, and a good tree cannot bear bad fruit." If someone calls himself a Christian but looks like every nonbeliever you've ever known, that's a pretty big tip that he's an imposter (some of Satan's biggest unwitting helpers). People are fallible, and we really let each other down. Jesus will never stop loving you or lie to you and hurt you or abandon you. He never changes. May God bless you in your search for Him. If you have any questions, I hope you'll ask us. In Christ! Sue S. When I became a new Christian many years ago, my younger brother, whom I looked up to as being a really Godly person, said to me, "Just promise me that you'll never judge who Jesus is by who I am. I'm going to let you down because I'm human. Never determine who Jesus is by the behavior of people." It's something that I've passed down to other new Christians. If we were perfect, we wouldn't need Jesus to pull us out of the muck.
  8. Has anyone read THE BONDAGE BREAKER by Neil Anderson? This book changed my life! I really believe that the first book we should give new Christians is the Bible. The second book should be the Bondage Breaker. What do you all think? Sue S.
  9. TwinCrier: It is evident by your posts that you are on fire for God. No one would be so adament about saving a lost soul without Him. However, I would encourage you not to take this so personally. I've been saved for 10 years, and when the Bible says that the lost are blind, that is an accurate description of the condition. I remember very clearly those years. My wonderful sister-in-law and brother would talk to me about Jesus and send me comtemporary praise/worship tapes. I would listen to them and the music, and I just didn't get it. I really wanted to understand. I wanted their passion for life and peace in the midst of struggles. But, try as I might, until it was God's timing for my husband and I, we were clueless. We were frustrated and defensive. I realize now that it is not my job to convert people. I'm just a seed spreader. It is the conviction of the Holy Spirit which changes lives. I would encourage you to read 1Corinthians 13. Some friends and I are memorizing that chapter. Boy, it is convicting. Continue to speak the truth in love knowing that God's Word does not return void. In Christ! Sue S.
  10. Thank you so much for your replies to my question. I was beginning to think it wasn't a pertinent question. May I give my opinion also? My son asked me about this the other day. When I look into the eyes of my children, I feel the weight of the responsibility of teaching them about God and His way of looking at the world. My first impulse was to say that unless the nations of the world stand with us, we shouldn't shoulder this burden alone. But, then I remembered the times that God whittled away the army of Israel until barely a remnant remained. When they were too few to accomplish anything on their own, He gave them victory. I think, too, that God calls us to not align ourselves with the world. Case in point, after the people of Israel begged for a king so that they could be like the other peoples, God gave them Saul...we all know what a disaster that was. So, seeking to align ourselves with the rest of the world is not necessarily always a good thing. Personally, I'm pretty anti-U.N. Many things they promote are very liberal, anti-God and anti-American. I am so happy that God has given us a president who seeks God everyday. God calls us to support those He places in leadership over us...unless they command us to sin. I believe George W. is here for "such a time as this." I believe that God's hand is upon him, and that if we are faithful to pray for our president, that God will hear our prayers and give him wisdom and discernment. So, I told my son that freedom isn't free. In our own family my grandmother lost her beloved brother in WWII. My father went to Korea; my brother is an airforce pilot. Throughout the world, people love us or hate us because we're strong and we stand together...always have. I think "fear of man is a snare." I think we need to pray for George W. Bush, and then let him lead. He's definately the guy we wanted in office for 911. He's still that same guy. Sue S.
  11. I know how you all feel about it being hard on your kids seeing all their friends dressing up and getting goodies. I've compensated for this by allowing my kids to have costume parties for their birthdays. It works well for my daughter whose birthday is right before Halloween. This year she's having a "Redwall" birthday party (based on the books by Brian Jacques). We're going all out. Brian Jacques is a master at creating word pictures and goes into great (and tantilizing) detail regarding the foods the characters eat (berries & cream, the otters' hot root soup, candied fruits & nuts, October ale, strawberry fizz, rich cheeses, Great Hall cake, etc.). Our mouths water just reading the books. Anyway, we're carving a pumpkin as a container for "hot root" stew (our version), making berries and cream (a recipe from Quick Cooking magazine), October ale (ginger ale)...anyway, you get the idea. We're also having a cake made to look like a drawing in the book THE GREAT REDWALL FEAST. We're using real autumn branches to decorate throughout the house and making a stained glass "Martin the Warrior" made out of cardboard and tissue paper. Additionally, all the girls must dress up as characters from the books. We printed out an elaborate invitation on cream-colored paper, ripped the edges and tea stained the paper to make it look old. We rolled the invites up and tied with raffia. Our party favors are tiny woven baskets ($.45 @ Michaels Craft Store) filled with candies. As you can imagine, none of these girls are going to feel a loss at missing Halloween. My kids are soon-to-be 11 and 8 and don't miss Halloween at all. In fact, we usually go to the local indoor community center playground, the library and then out for dinner or ice cream. Since everyone else is trick-or-treating, these places are deserted! It's great! With a little creativity, Christian familes can easily put Halloween out of sight and out of mind. Does anyone else have fun ideas for this time of year? In Christ! Sue S. P.S. I had trouble posting this evening. I hope that I didn't post twice.
  12. Seminarywife: Don't sweat the reading thing. I had hs moms older and wiser than myself tell me to relax regarding my kids learning to read. My sister-in-law banged her head against the wall trying to get her son to read. Then, one day when he was about 7 yrs. old, it was like God flipped a switch. Suddenly, he just got it. I've found that with both my kids as well (but especially my son). It's kind of an unspoken thing among homeschoolers that we all secretly want to tell friends and relatives, "Oh, MY son/daughter was reading at age 3 1/2." Who are we trying to impress? "Fear of man is a snare." Unless there's a learning disability, they'll all eventually get it. You don't want to pound them on it and turn them off to reading. At age six, he should be learning his letters. With my kids, as they learned each letter I had them also memorize the phonics sounds for each letter. Once they knew all the basic sounds, I did (home-made) flash cards with combinations (oo - both pronounciations, ow, ou, etc.). When they were interested in reading, they already had the framework to do so. At that point I used Phyllis Shlaffley's "Learn to Read" curriculum (which Focus on the Family GAVE to me). The best thing you can do with a reluctant reader is to read tons of wonderful books to him/her. HONEY FOR A CHILD'S HEART is a book which lists good books according to age level. You should be able to get it at the library. We are now mowing through Brain Jacques Redwall series. I can't say enough about these incredible books. Both my kids are able to read on their own, however, I LOVE these books, and reading to them is my excuse to read the books. You probably feel enormous pressure because your son is your first student, and those in your social circle will be watching him very closely (to see if you're doing a good job or ruining him for life). The best thing you can do for the long-term success of your homeschooling experience is to resolve not to care what other people think. As long as you're abiding by the homeschooling laws in your state and tuning into your child's needs, you're doing just fine. Isn't that one of the reasons we all homeschool--to give our kids an education tailored to their individual needs? Showing this concern over your son tells me that you're tuned into him and doing a good job. I hope this is an encouragement to you. In Christ! Sue S.
  13. Wonka2: That is sooooo true. My kids are almost 11 and 8. I remember when they were small, and I thought, "I can't wait until I can reason with them and they can be more self controlled. Then I'll really enjoy them." I longed for them to be grade school age. Well, those days are gone, and now I look at them and think, "If only I could have just one more of those early days with them." I wish I had one more chance to listen to their giggles and try to figure out what was going on in their little heads. I would love to just cuddle with my kids and hear their funny, mispronounced words; watch them nod off and smell the sweetness of their damp hair as they sleep. Once those days are gone, they are gone forever! It's hard to put an 11 yr. old on your lap. That's not to say that older kids aren't wonderful. Every age really is precious in it's own way. But, ALL YOU YOUNG MOMS OUT THERE, take it from those of us with older kids, when they reach the age of puberty and beyond, you will long for the treasures of those early years. Yes, you're exhausted. Yes, your home is in perpetual chaos. Yes, diapers and potty training stink. However, there are a only about 7 years from butterfly kisses to bras. Accept the messy house, spills on the floor and fatigue. They are a very small price to pay for being allowed into the young lives of your precious children. It won't be long until the chores are gone...along with your kids. And then YOU'LL be encouraging moms younger than you with your memories. Wonka2, you're a great encouragement to these moms. I look forward to reading your posts. In Christ! Sue S.
  14. Kathy: I'm right there with you on Halloween. I grew up celebrating Halloween with gusto. When I became a Christian 10 years ago, I began to feel uncomfortable about it. We did the candy with the tracts thing for a year, even dressed up our daughter as the angel that stood before Balaam, but couldn't reconcile our new alienation from it. When we learned that it is a Wiccan and Satanic high holy day, that pretty much decided it for us. The thought of children being sacrificed on the same night my kids are dressed like fuzzy, little animals isn't for me. I applaud you for being a light in the darkness. Sue S.
  15. Hi Theresa: I'd like to second the opinion that really young kids like yours don't need a structured school day (I know that goes against the grain of what society is telling us). Most new HS moms (like I was) go gung ho with their first one out of eagerness (which is wonderful). What we all usually realize by child 2, 3, or 4 is that we really didn't need a "curriculum" for preschool with all the bells and whistles. Many new moms feel like they have to prove something to relatives, friends, ect. Most 3 yr. olds I know can barely sit still for 5 minutes! You put unnecessary pressure on yourself and your child by expecting that you'll do any substantial "school work" at this age. If anything, you'll both burn out by the time he/she's five. If you're very motivated, teach your child his/her ABCs and numbers (materials = paper and crayons or index cards), read a lot of books together, color or finger paint and just enjoy this precious time together. Look into a curriculum when your child is kindergarten age. Your kids will never be this special age again. I would encourage you not to waste this time sticking to a schedule. If you can help your child to learn to play with other kids and be OBEDIENT, that will be much more beneficial to your homeschooling experience in the long run than any curriculum. That's just my humble opinion. Are there any other experienced homeschool moms who have suggestions? Theresa, God bless you and your family on your homeschooling journey. Sue S.

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