Archive | May 2018

enjoying a day

So, I’m trying to focus myself on enjoying these homeschooling days because God seems to put this before me year after year, and I want to start learning all the lessons I can from it.

I wonder sometimes about the childhood He is giving my children. It’s a subject I have to trust Him with. We all do, right? Our kids can’t choose their childhoods– nobody chooses it. I was thinking this AM about the Royal Family– so many rules and constraints to live by, and they didn’t choose it– they were born into it. A spouse– well, that feels more like choosing.

Also, a general theme in my life at this time is learning: That all the results/consequences that I live out now from choosing God’s will at certain earlier moments of my life–those results are also God’s will for my life. And I need to embrace those things, too, as God’s meaningful, purposeful, exact. good will for my life. Even though I feel like I didn’t directly CHOOSE these factors of my life, I actually DID choose them. I was actively choosing the life I have now when I was making particular, large decisions about “God’s will” for my life. Like choosing to live in Ukraine. Like choosing to marry. Like choosing to marry a Ukrainian. Like choosing to have our children. Like choosing to be employed as missionaries.

Those are choices I/we have made according to God’s will. Accepting that the fall-out of those choices is just as much God’s will … that is my life lesson right now.

So, I’m learning to value and even enjoy the fall-out. 🙂 It’s a process. I could just grit my teeth and endure it. But who wants to live like that? I’d rather spend the effort learning to enjoy it. So I’m watching how I live my days a little more. Trying to count the moments a little more.

In the spirit of that, here are some photos from today:

reading a book with Una

Andre and Vika played Legos for a bit

Working through The Armor of God (Shirer) Bible study our ladies’ SS class is going through

Andre wanted to make a pyramid yesterday, so we did

After our trip to Walmart, I saw this funny scene on our kitchen counter

I love how our kids just get tired and put themselves down for naps, and while they slept, Vika and I restfully read; she finished Little Women and I read A Pocketful of Pinecones.

Vitaliy and Skyla went fishing today

These are from yesterday

A nice day to remember.

creationism and raising children

I know Creation/Evolution is something that some folks are very emotional about. I’m not terribly emotional about this topic, personally. So, I’m saying that to say: I want to talk about creation in the light of childbirth and childrearing, but as I’ve said before, I hate conflict. I’m not writing this to stir up arguments, especially online. So please don’t comment.

I myself have been surprised at how convinced I’ve become about creationism, without even really studying the issue. I don’t read books about it, watch shows, whatever. I’m biased towards believing creationism, and I “see” things that support my view. If I were biased to believe evolution (as a Christian), I’d probably find things that support that view, too. I do believe that “evolution” happens, but not in the way Evolutionists explain it. I guess I see evolution more as adaptations and changes. I don’t see unlike creatures evolving from the same source.

Anyway, that’s not where I’m going here. I want to tell you about my experience that really got me to thinking about creation/evolution  in my own way.

I had a couple I was a doula for, and the man once commented about how human babies are born very undeveloped (compared to animals) because their heads have to fit through the female pelvis. So human babies are born very “early” because it evolved that way. That was his point.

I thought about that a lot.

You know, I don’t think anything about childbirth is a work of evolution. I see design throughout the entire process of pregnancy and childbirth. The hormones alone! are enough to convince me of this. . I think pregnancy and childbirth was designed so exactly to work: the hormones (preventing contractions, then causing contractions, relaxing the human tissues, etc), the pelvis design, the bones of the baby’s head, and on and on. It is so exactly designed to work. I mean, it’s awesome, in the truest sense of that word. Pregnancy and birth is not a catastrophe waiting to happen- it’s a well-designed process that sometimes has variations, and in a few cases something goes wrong (usually explain-ably).

I also don’t think human babies are born “early” as evolution teaches. I think God exactly designed them to be born at the exact time they are born. To be uber-dependent on parents for a very long time, compared to animals. I believe that all the stages of child development are planned. By God. For very specific reasons. I think it goes back to the fact that we are made in God’s image, why our children have such an “extended” time of development. I don’t think this evolved. I think it’s always from the start been made to be this way.

I will close with the reminder, no arguing. I don’t really want to talk about this, I’m just sharing, and this is my space in which to do so 🙂

school: learning vs. “school”

It’s probably interesting what Andre actually is learning in conjunction with what we do in “school.” Chef school?

We made salt/flour/water dough to make a little map with certain geographical features.

We’ll paint it later, I think, when it dries.

a cliff

labeling continents and some features of Egypt

He and Una really love the dough! We made three batches extra just for them to play with.

Yesterday we wrote a thank-you card together. Here he’s tracing his name:


experience sure helps with home school

So, end of April, Andre just turned six, and I’m inspired to start our first year of home school. It’s actually really nice to be starting this child, I guess because I’m more experienced. We’re going through Tapestry of Grace, year one. I did this year with Skyla and Vika once already, maybe for 2nd or 3rd grade, and it was enjoyable, too. They have lots of hands-on options, reading, etc.

So we’re starting with ancient Egypt. I made the craft a group activity: make a paddle doll.  I switched it to Styrofoam, rather than corrugated cardboard. We cut and painted and put the heads on. They’re drying now and tomorrow we’ll decorate them.

I took Andre out to dinner and we did his book work. He’s flying through the first grade math so far. I like that I was able to teach him a little technique important for future handwriting. In his math pages, he was supposed to circle the correct number, but he circles in the wrong direction and starts the circle in a random place, and it’s not a great habit for handwriting later. (He’s done no writing so far.)

So I put four dots in a rectangle around the number, and showed him which dot to start on and in which direction to move around them. It was very simple and he caught on immediately. I small thing, but it showed me that I am thinking more like a teacher. I wasn’t like this when I started home school 6 years ago. 

It was a good start.

Vitaliy made a card game with the girls to help them all memorize verses. For now, they’ve reduced it to memorizing the reference and verse theme.

Cool idea 🙂