Tuesday Toolbox Mood:
energetic Topic: Blog Carnivals!
It's my weekly Tuesday Toolbox post, and I can guarantee it is like nothing else I have ever posted. Watch the movie first, then I'll explain !
I found this on another blog today and immediately thought it would be a great homeschooling tool. Since most people now days have a computer in the home, and since www.xtranormal.com is free, then I figured it would be great for this week's Tuesday's Toolbox. It is easy to use and is a real hoot! Have fun everyone.
Can you believe that we are on our fourth question? I have really enjoyed hosting this meme and all of the great feedback it has received. Even though it seems like it has had a slow start, the Men's Monday Meme has generated a lot of interest, and I'm sure that it will grow.
Now for the new question of the week!
How do you divide up the work at home? Do you help out with housework?
All right, so it's two questions, but they go together. I have heard many families say that the outside is the man's, and the inside is the lady's. In other words, anything that involves the outside of the house - mowing, painting, landscaping, etc. is the husband's responsibility. The inside - cleaning, redecorating, cooking, etc. is the wife's responsibility. They are in no way trying to dictate what should or shouldn't be a man's job or a woman's job, that's just the way they divide the work. How do you all divide the work at home. Do you do some of the housework? Do you cook? Do you have a special housework job like the dishes or the laundry? This could be a heated topic, before you discuss it with one another perhaps you should make a New Year's resolution to get along this year with no fighting !
Don't forget the rules:
This is a man's meme, so the answers must be the answers from a man. Either the man can answer on his blog, or a wife can interview her husband for her blog. However, if the wife puts it on her blog, she must stay true to what her husband said.
You are encouraged to put one of the Men's Monday Meme buttons found to the left on your blog. Just copy the code below the button of your choice. The more folks who link, the more readers you may have to visit your blog.
You may answer the question any time during the week up through next Monday. After you answer the question, add the address to your post to the Mr.Linky below. If you could, please only add the direct link to the post to make it easier for readers to find the entry.
My answer along with a new question will be posted next Monday. The new Mr. Linky will be added at midnight Monday night.
Do you make New Year's resolutions? If not, why not? If so, what are they?
In years past I have made New Year's resolutions. Sometimes they are just casual thoughts, sometimes they are more thought out. This year is one of those years where I have thought about it a little more than usual.
Interestingly enough, this is the first New Year's after a full year of blogging and some of my New Year's resolutions have to do with blog posts that I have read or blog challenges that have been made. After some mulling in my mind, I have narrowed down my list into five areas. Some could possibly overlap, and all are broad, so they need to be broken down into manageable steps, but here they are.
Spend more time in prayer and Bible reading. - You would think, that as a full time missionary, these things should be down pat. In reality, though, missionaries are just like any ordinary Christian and unfortunately, we often fall short in these areas like many Christians do. That's one of the reasons why I have committed myself to the "New through 30 - New Testament in 30 Days" challenge starting next Monday. I am really excited about it and hope that you will join me. Just click here to go to the official New Through 30 website. Along with the Bible reading, I would like to begin a prayer journal. I have begun them in the past, but they have always ended up being put to the side and eventually forgotten about. I would really like to begin and continue with one this year.
Spend more quality time with my family. - I think that I do spend more time with my family than the average Joe. After all, the mission is attached to our house, and we do homeschool. I would like, however, to spend more "daddy" time with my kids and "hubby" time with my wife. So often, the time spent with my family is scheduled time. Time to homeschool. Time to go to therapy. Time to drive to practice. There really isn't time just for the kids. I would like to plan some time that I just do something with my kids with no strings attached. Individually and as a family. Along with that, I would like to plan times with Sarah. Reinstitute the date night that we used to have, and, perhaps, begin doing some daily things together. Prayer would be at the top of the list, but exercising, walking, sitting down with a cup of coffee together - are all possibilities.
Spend more time praying, planning and implementing my ministry at Good News Mission. - Since God has narrowed our focus to working just with Good News Mission, we have seen the mission and it's ministries really flourish. Sometimes God has to get our attention in painful ways because we refuse to heed his voice. That's what He has done over the past couple of years, and I don't want Him to have to repeat those lessons. I have not been this happy with my ministry and my life in a long time. It hasn't always gone smoothly, but we prayerfully try to keep God in the center, and He is blessing.
Eat right and exercise. - I wrote a post a few months ago that never got published on my blog. It was an introductory post on how Sarah and I were trying to eat healthier. Although the article was never posted, we are still trying to watch what we consume. I will hopefully write something about that soon. We also would both like to exercise more. There is an exercise challenge that I would like to join, and I will probably be blogging about that real soon as well.
Clean the house and my office and get organized. - Still another challenge that I heard about this week and am going to sign up for. I will be blogging about that really soon. A less than clean and unorganized house effects everything that we do. You can't live, work, homeschool ... anything...with a dirty, messy house. As I said, I am going to join a challenge soon, that will explain the plan. Stay tuned.
OK, there you have it in a nutshell. My five broad New Year's resolutions. Now that I have blogged about them, I know I will have countless accountability partners to keep me on track. I would appreciate all of the encouragement and prayers that you could give. New Year's resolutions are never easy to keep, but this year I would like to accomplish at least three or four of them. I'll keep you posted!
A New Challenge Is Coming - The Official Announcement! Mood:
a-ok Topic: Bible Reading & Devotions
A couple of weeks ago I said that a new challenge was coming and left a short video for you to watch. Did any of you figure out what it was? It's the:
New Thru 30 - Reading the New Testament in 30 Days challenge! No, it won't be easy. In fact, it's something I've never done nor tried to do in my life. But, it is something that I'm committed to do beginning January 11th. Yep, that's one week from tomorrow! That gives you one week to pray about it and to join me.
Can we do it! By God's grace we can. It's only 30 days! It's not like we are committing our life away. The plan even gives us two days off a week to use as catch up days if we need them. Here's a link to their official website, and here's a link to the Bible reading schedule if you want to peek at it. You would end up reading about 10-12 chapters from the New Testament a day. A few days may be a little more and a few days a little less. Would you please take this week to pray about it and mull it over? It could be a life changing experience. I'm excited about it! Please feel free to leave a comment or ask a question. I'll be telling you more about it this week and will be counting down the days on this blog. Looking forward to hearing from you.
Dealing With Aging Parents Mood:
not sure Topic: Family
Mom, the kids and me in September of '09.
I remember when I was young. I thought that my parents would be around forever. I remember thinking that I hope I die before my parents do because I didn't think that I would be able to cope if something happened to them. Then I became independent, and later I married. Still, though, I planned on my parents living way up until their nineties. I wanted them to be around to watch my children grow up.
Then, my dad died at the age of 77 a month after 9/11. My life wouldn't be the same again. It's funny how you dream of doing things with your kids that you did when you were younger. I dreamed of going on vacations that included my whole family - my mom and my dad, my brother and sister-in-law, my sister and her family. I soon realized that I couldn't relive the memories that I had as a youth. I would have to create new memories with my wife and children.
A few years later, my brother-in-law passed away and then, a year later, my brother. At about that same time, my mother had a stroke while visiting my sister and is now in a nursing home in NJ. Now three people that I remember being around all of my life were gone (I'm the youngest and my sister got married when I was six) and one was in a nursing home - all within the span of six years.
Now some of our memories consist of visiting my sister, my nephew and my mom two or three times a year. We are presently on one of those trips. Yesterday I went to see my mom. We had just been to visit a few months back and mom seemed OK. I have spoken to her a few times since, and my sister keeps me updated as to how mom is doing, but I wasn't expecting what happened. When I walked in and sat down beside her, she seemed pleasant, but I could tell something wasn't right. As our time together progressed, I realized what it was. She didn't recognize me. I talked of the kids and our trip up, but she didn't know who I was.
Later, I asked if she had been reading. She had always been an avid reader, but there was no book sitting beside her bed. I found some books in a drawer, pulled one out and set it on her nightstand. I turned to talk with her room mate, and to my surprise, when I turned back around Mom was reading the book. My excitement waned, though, when I saw that she was reading page 75. There was no way that she could have gotten there that quickly. I asked her what it was about she smiled and said "Oh, you would like it.". When I pressed her again she looked at the title and said "It's about Patricia". Patricia was the name of the book.
Tomorrow we are all going to visit. We'll see if she recognizes the whole family. Carol sees her several times a week, and to her the changes may be slight, but to me, at least on that day, they were very evident.
I thank God for my parents, and the years that I had with Dad and still have with Mom. But, it is still hard when you watch your parent age. Mom is now 88 years old. It is difficult to imagine not having her around, but it is becoming very apparent that the time will come. Perhaps having Mom not present mentally is God's way of preparing me for not having her here physically. I think I am prepared for it now, but maybe you never really are. Time will tell.
Thank you, Lord, for my mother. Please be with her while she is on earth just as I know you will be with her in Heaven. Thank you for the time on earth that I have had with my parents. I thank you for the lessons that they taught to me and the legacy that they have left for me. Please prepare my heart and mind for the day that you will choose to take my mother home to be with you. I know that when you do, she will be free from pain, free from mental loss, she will be perfect and whole. Thank you for providing a way that we can someday live in Heaven with you.