Breathe

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Some days I find myself struggling to catch my breath

as the waves a panic crash over me.

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I find myself drowning under a weight of worry…

the concern of what could be can be paralyzing,

and the “what if” thoughts cause my heart to race.

As a planner and a problem solver by nature nothing is more panic inducing then the uncertainty of tomorrow. My mind continues to race late into the night long after my legs and body are still. I find myself playing out worst case scenarios in my mind in an attempt to be prepared for the possibility of anything. There is the belief that peace comes from having a plan, a solution, for every out of control scenario. So when a situation comes that is beyond my control and isn’t fixable despite all the effort, work, and planning, I find myself in a panic. I hate that feeling of life being out of control…(which really means: out of MY control). I recognize the irony of this because life is, if anything, one big out of control ride. To believe we have some power to change situations or change other people is as laughable as a toddler turning a toy steering wheel in the back seat with the belief that they are controlling the car their father drives.

The very things, those traits, that are my greatest gifts can often be my greatest sins. The gift of leadership, organization, hard work, and diligence can quickly evolve into arrogance, pride and control when not aligned with God’s will. So often from a good and honest motivation to help and fix comes less than godly responses…responses like impatience, anger, frustration, judgement and fear…none of which are from God.

Fear is not of God.

Worry is not of God.

I know this and yet during certain seasons of my life I find myself in a daily battle with my own thoughts and emotions.

Lately I have found myself struggling not to collapse under a weight of worry. Most of these worries are stemming from a situation that is beyond my control. Most of these sleepless nights come from a panic over tomorrow and what might be.

What is the remedy for those drowning thoughts?

Presence.

Stopping.

Stillness.

For it is only when I stop and breathe and am present that I remember my place in the universe. I allow God to be God and I rest in His promise.

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Living outside today is a pointless gesture, for tomorrow isn’t promised. I can’t fix tomorrow. I can’t control tomorrow. I am not to worry and plan for tomorrow. I am simply to live fully today.

So today:

I will not push my agenda.

I will look up.

I will be aware.

I will count my blessings.

I will be grateful.

I will practice patience.

I will be present in this moment.

I will obey God’s leading for this day.

 I will trust Him with my tomorrows.

And I will breathe.

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A SUPER week ends with a Super Bowl party

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This post is a “catch up” post. We had a full week with lots of things going on, but none big enough to devote an entire post to. The result: a smorgasbord of life events from the past week.

:)

  1. In the Cyber School my three oldest children attend there is an opportunity to be part of school clubs. This is a fun reward that can be enjoyed when school work is completed. There are a variety of clubs available, for every interest you could imagine. Rusty is a member of the Lego Club and Chess Club. My girls have taken part in the Photography Club and Mural Club. These are fun activities that they look forward to. It is a chance to participate in fun activities and socialize with other cyber students. This week was Mural Club. Molly was in a class and couldn’t attend so Grace invited Rusty and I to participate with her.  In Mural Club the teacher chooses a project and informs the students what supplies they will need for that painting and then everyone logs into a virtual classroom where the Mural Club teacher walks them through the process of creating that work of art, allowing for as much creative license as the students would like to take. She is there simply to guide. This week the project was a painting of a night time sky. Rusty and I joined Grace up in our playroom to paint. It was a lot of fun and we were quite proud of our finished projects.
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My painting is on the far left, Rusty’s is in the middle, and Gracie’s is on the right.

 

2. Another club Grace is involved in is Fandom Club. This is a club that Grace and her friend, Olivia, came up with and received approval by the school to lead. They are in charge of coming up with the activities and discussion for the bi-monthly Fandom meeting. Each meeting is devoted to a different popular teen fandom. They develop power point slides that guide the meeting as they discuss the fandom of the week. In the past they have had meetings on the Harry Potter series, Marvel Super Heroes, Hunger Games, Star Wars, etc. This week was all about Nintendo, and Rusty helped Grace prepare the Fandom Club meeting since this is more in his area of interest/expertise than Gracie’s.

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Gracie leading the meeting from her bedroom.

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Rusty attending the meeting from his room :)

3. For everyone’s “one on one time” this week we worked on projects that were personal to them and their needs for the week. For Tyler’s time we made Valentines for his biological siblings. He has been missing them desperately this week and needing to reach out and connect, so we pulled out our container of art supplies and let him go to town. This week we also made stress balls together. My boys each have a stress ball they use for anxiety in therapy. It is a stretchy, squishy ball that they can pull, squeeze and pinch while they are working through tough stuff with Miss Tina. We also use it at home when emotions are hard. I have found that their stress balls aren’t always accessible when we need them so I decided to make a bunch of them to put around the house, in the car, and in my purse so I have one whenever I need one. The process was simple and the boys LOVED helping me make them. We bought a pack of balloons. We blew them up to stretch out the rubber, and then using a funnel we filled them with flour before tying them closed. They work wonderfully, cost us almost nothing, and will hopefully guarantee we will have a stress ball accessible whenever we need one. :)

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As for the other kids’ one on one time…Rusty worked on Duty to God (The goal setting program at church) with me and Ozzie and I worked on completing the last few projects in his Faith in God program before his 12th birthday in two weeks. Grace was asked to teach her Sunday School class this Sunday so I helped her plan her lesson and Molly has spent the last two weeks working on a Personal Progress project that requires her to make dinner for two weeks. She has done a great job and I have LOVED being off dinner duty. Molly has treated us to tortellini soup, lasagna, potato soup, corned beef and couscous, pierogis, spaghetti, etc. YUM!

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4. One evening this week we lost power for three hours. The kids loved the novelty of lighting candles and playing games in the dark. For the big kids that had fully charged laptop computers school continued in the dark until lessons were done, and then all the kids enjoyed hide and seek in the dark with glow sticks. Ozzie was a bit nervous and stuck pretty close to me through the power outage. I know he was immensely relieved when the lights came on before it was time for bed.

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5. I found time to work on a little decorating project. A year ago Tyler broke my big yellow mirror in the living room by “fishing” in the living room and casting a rod that had a weight tied to the end. (“It flew further that way,” he explained.) I finally had Toby take out the broken mirror from where we stored it away in the basement and decided that rather than replace the mirror I would use it as a frame for a photo collage above the piano. I love how it turned out!

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6. This weekend we had three little visitors. They came Friday and stayed through Sunday. Toby spent Saturday working on the bus. With Molly’s help he completed the wiring. When the kids weren’t playing they were on the bus “helping.”

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The three 9-11 year olds heading out to explore in the woods.

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Two of Toby’s “helpers.”

 

7. While Toby spent Saturday working on the bus, Rusty spent his Saturday at a Boy Scout Merit Badge Pow Wow with other scouts. It was an all day event. Rusty worked on three Merit Badges: chess, architecture, and first aid. He enjoyed all three classes but the Chess Merit Badge was his favorite. In addition to learning more about the game and different plays he was able to learn how a professional tournament is played and how to record the moves of a game.

8. Tyler had a birthday party on Saturday. He was invited to a friend’s birthday party and was SO EXCITED to be invited to a birthday party all by himself…with no siblings. It was a first for him and he put a lot of thought and love into buying the perfect gift and picking out the perfect card (a singing card of course!) The theme for the party was Legos and he came home with a cute Lego t-shirt he made at the party.

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9. The three big kids were excited to see the fruits of their labors with these certificates they received in the mail from their school. Rusty earned High Honors this past quarter with all A’s and Grace and Molly received Distinguished Honors with all high A’s. I’m so proud of them all. They worked hard for those accomplishments.

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10. Our weekend ended with a SUPER Super Bowl party with friends. We have been invited to the McKay’s Super bowl party since Rusty was a little baby and we look forward to the chance to reconnect and spend time with them every year. They are an amazing family and we always leave their home feeling inspired, blessed and loved by their gracious hospitality. We ate good food, laughed a lot, and enjoyed a great night of football… despite the Steelers not playing. :)

It was a busy week. It was a good week. We are incredibly blessed.

Let them eat PIE!

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My calling/responsibility at church is to help plan monthly enrichment activities for the women at church. I work with a great committee of women who work to come up with, and execute, monthly activities. Recently we had a new addition called to serve as Relief Society Meeting Coordinator. I am so excited to work with Andrea. She is a lot of fun and brings so many talents to the table. I can’t wait to glean from her cache of creativity.

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We began our year with a PIE night.

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It was an opportunity to kick off our year of visiting teaching in a FUN way.

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I love this cute sign Andrea made for the wall!

 

We arrived early to decorate and set up for the night.

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The card making corner.

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Grace painted a Pie painting to add to the decorations. 

 

Our evening began with a devotional taught by our visiting teaching coordinator, Donna Harn. Using the acronym: P.I.E she talked about the three key parts of effective visiting teaching and fellowshipping.

P= Prayer

I= Inspiration

E= Engineer

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We then gathered in the gym where different activities were set up for the women to enjoy while we pulled sisters out for individual chats to check in on them and the ladies they visit.

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In the gym the ladies were able to sit and visit with each other at the cocoa and conversation corner where we had hot cocoa with many fun toppings.

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At another station we had a few “Pie Face” games set up for some crazy, messy fun.

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And finally we had an area set up for the ladies to make homemade cards that they could use to brighten someone else’s day.

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The cards they could make included:

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We had a great turn-out and it was so nice to see so many ladies there.

At the end of the night we came back together to eat PIE!

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 The ladies all brought pies. It was a pie lover’s dream with many different fruit and crème pies to sample.

My kids, who were babysitting in the nursery, came in at the end to sneak a piece of pie and try their hand at “Pie Face.” They decided that it needed be added to the family games wish list.

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It was a wonderful night made all the better by many helping hands, familiar and new happy faces, and P*I*E…PIE!

Sweet is the Work!

Sending Love to Heaven

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This was a tough week for Oz as we delved into some deep hurts. In therapy and at home we have been doing “parts” work. Tina is working with Ozzie to help him understand that he isn’t defined by one part of himself. He isn’t defined by one event in his life, one role he has played, or one emotion he feels. All those parts come together and create who he is. We have been exploring each “part” of Ozzie by having him draw that piece of himself and what that emotion, role, or memory looks like. This week we explored his role as a grandson.

We began with his current relationships as a grandson of my parents and Toby’s mother. He drew what that part of him looked like. He drew himself with a smile, surrounded by hearts and a big sunshine in the sky. It is a part of himself that he likes…that he feels comfortable with.

Then I asked if we could draw the part of Ozzie that was a grandson to his biological (dad’s side) grandma. He shut down. He laid his head down on the table, pulled his hood over his head, and whispered, “I can’t. That is too uncomfortable for me.” I assured him that was fine, gave him a hug and sent him to play, making a mental note to talk to Tina about it at our next therapy session.

On Tuesday we showed Tina the parts work he had done. I mentioned his struggle with that one part. Tina lovingly prodded, looking for a crack in the wall that he had built around that memory.

“Can you tell me about your Grandma?” she asked.

With the right questions and some gentle probing Ozzie began to share.

He spoke with such love for the woman that seemed to be a source of patience, kindness and stability in his unstable world. He shared his sadness about her death and the hurt he felt when he wasn’t able to attend her funeral.

Tina asked if he had ever attended a funeral, or if he knew what happened at a funeral.

He shook his head, “No.”

We explained what happened at a funeral, what its purpose was: to bring closure, to grieve with others who cared about that person, and to share stories of remembrance.

Tina then asked if he would like to write an “obituary” for his Grandma Price and record his memories of her life and his feelings. He agreed. He began speaking and I began recording his words on paper:

My Grandma- by, Ozzie

She loved to bake.

I remember she always baked chocolate chip cookies, apple pie, and cinnamon covered cashews.

She took us fun places, like to McDonalds. She would let us order whatever we wanted and let us play on the playground.

I would visit my grandma at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and 4th of July and she would watch us when my parents went on vacation.

She always hugged me when I came into her house and when I had to leave.

She wasn’t selfish.

She was gentle.

If my grandma was sitting here I would say, “I love you.”

When he was done he took a deep breath and then turned to me and asked if we could send his memories to Heaven.

On the way home we stopped at the Dollar Store to pick up some red heart helium balloons to carry his words to Heaven.

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That evening we gathered in the yard to have a memorial service for Ozzie’s grandmother. He shared the memories he had recorded, as Grace, Molly, Rusty, and Tyler gathered around. He then added a note to the end of the obituary:

“Dear Heavenly Father,

Please make sure my Grandma Price gets my letter.

I miss her.

Love, Ozzie.”

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We tied the paper to the end of the string and let it fly.

As he let it go the strong winds caught hold of the balloons, blowing it into the trees where it tangled among the branches. Ozzie was heart-broken and fearful that his words would never reach Heaven.

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I was not going to let that happen.

The kids all headed inside, eager to warm up, and I began: “Mission Heavenly Words.”

(Cue Mission Impossible music.)

I climbed, wrestled, tugged, and shook the balloons lose. There were cheers from Ozzie and a sigh of relief from my own lips…

and then a groan.

The balloons and attached obituary flew twenty feet only to become entangled in another tree.

“My note will never make it to Heaven,” Ozzie said through tears.

This Momma was not going to let that happen.

Onto the next tree. More climbing, wrestling, tugging and shaking and it broke free again…

Only to blow into the next patch of trees.

*GRRR*

(Have I mentioned how WINDY it was?!)

Finally we untangled it for the last time and watched as it floated toward Heaven, carrying words of love from a hurting little boy to a special angel in his life.

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Happy Groundhog Day!

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February 2nd, my Mom’s favorite day of the year. I never understood her affinity for Groundhog Day until I too became a mother. Now I understand. It is the one holiday we as mothers can look forward to with no guilt or stress. There are no cards to send, no gifts to buy, no special meals or weeks of chaos leading up to it. We simply, from the comfort of our own warm and cozy homes, watch an adorable furry animal come out of his burrow to see his shadow. It is, hands down, the most underrated holiday of the year! :)

We made sure we called my Mom to sing, “Happy Groundhog Day to You” in honor of her special day. :)

The day began with viewing the bg event at Gobbler’s Knob, online. The kids were thrilled to discover that Spring is on the way.

We decided to save Family Night until Tuesday this week, so we could celebrate Groundhog Day. I found some fun ideas online and had a blast preparing a Groundhog Day lesson and treat.

When Toby arrived home he helped me set up the activity while the kids were kept occupied in the dining room with a Groundhog Day word search.

Around the house Toby and I hid facts about Groundhog Day and groundhogs for the kids to search out during the scavenger hunt we planned. Here are some of the fact sheets. (We hid 35)

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They each received a booklet of 35 questions and they had to look around the house to find the answers to those questions.

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We set the timer for 20 minutes. On your mark…get set…Go!

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The activity was a hit. Gracie and Tyler worked as a team with Tyler finding the fact sheets and Grace recording the answers.

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At the end of the activity we discussed what they learned and then ended the evening with a special treat…Groundhog pudding cups.

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Happy Groundhog Day from our whistle pigs to yours.

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Have an Ice Day!

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Saturday evening was the annual ice skating activity for the youth of our church. This is an activity that my kids look forward to every year. Youth from all around the Pittsburgh area come together for a night of free ice skating, dinner, and games. The leadership that put together this event always do a smashing job and it is one of the favorite activities of the year.

This year Ozzie missed attending by a few weeks. (He will be turning 12 in February) He was disappointed but I assured him that he will have many years of ice skating ahead of him.

Rusty invited his friend, Lucas, to join us.

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The event lasted four hours, beginning with skating…

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Then everyone came back inside for dinner. Those in charge prepared a dinner of “walking tacos” which was a big hit with the teenagers.

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The remainder of the night was set aside for the kids to play board games and socialize with each other.

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Everyone left with pink cheeks, sore ankles, and big smiles on their faces.

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Thank you!

Boy Scout Klondike Derby

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“A Klondike derby is an annual event held by some Boy Scouts of America districts during the winter months and is based on the heritage of the Klondike Gold Rush BSA units have been running Klondike derbies since 1949.

The event varies by district, but the typical Klondike derby consists of several stations where patrols/units must test their Scoutcraft skills and their leadership abilities, earning points towards a total score.”

This weekend was the Klondike Derby for the Boy Scouts in our area. Rusty’s troop was one of the troops participating in this fun overnight campout and competition. Toby joined Rusty, one other leader, and a few more scouts in representing our troop.

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The Derby was held at Camp Baker, a scout camp about twenty minutes from our home.

It was a cold night and I fell even more in love with my husband as he set aside his own desires and the warmth and comfort of his own bed to camp outside with a bunch of scouts on a cold Friday in January. He is a GOOD man!

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Despite the cold temperatures the boys had a blast. Our troop was only participating for half the events because of another church actity on Saturday night.

The competed with the other troops in orienteering, knot tying, the two person saw race:

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Fire starting (Their team won that event!):

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and even competed in the Klondike Sled race despite not having their sled. The sled was not brought over because they thought that event was happening after they had to leave, so when the discovered that they would be there for the event, rather than sit it out, they improvised with a human sled.

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One scout was the sled, one was the pusher, one was the puller, and one was the rider.

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They didn’t win but they made some fun memories!

Rusty arrived home eager to tell me about his Klondike adventures and then it was on the road again for the next big activity for the weekend: Ice Skating!

Llama Drama

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For English Composition Rusty has been working on a personal memoir assignment. He chose to share the story of the day we adopted Obama the Llama. We have had fun looking back on that funny adventure. Here is his memoir:

“Life on our farm is always an adventure. We have had our share of crazy experiences with the animals that call Patchwork Farm home, but the one that takes the cake is the day we brought home our llama.

Near our home there is a weekly auction that takes place every Friday night. At this auction you can bid on everything from 20 pounds of strawberries to a used air conditioner, and everything in between. The biggest reason we go to Rogers auction is the animal auction. At Rogers we have bought chickens, rabbits, even the occasional goat. Never did I think we would buy a llama. It all happened when we showed up at the auction and there was a llama in the pen with the goats. He was tall, with long, white fur and a sloping big nose. My dad was instantly in love with the idea of having a llama. The thought of having a llama in the field to protect our herd of goats appealed to him. As we sat in the audience Dad was hoping that the llama would be a good price. At this point in the night I think my dad, in all his excitement, forgot we didn’t have a trailer with us. He raised his hand to bid and the auctioneer pointed to him and yelled “Sold!” We were now the owners of a llama.

Dad went to the front desk to pay his bill and then went into the barn to get our new llama. With a harness and a leash Dad walked the llama to our car. It was at this moment that he remembered that he didn’t drive his truck and trailer to the auction. We had actually come in the family station wagon. Rather than panic dad just said, “We will figure this out.”

We walked to the the car dragging a 300-pound llama by the leash. Dad had Mom hold the leash while he folded down the seats that the kids weren’t using, to make space for a 7-foot llama. It was now time to convince the llama to climb into the back of the station wagon. He found out llamas don’t like station wagons. They also don’t fold easily, but dad was persistent and with a tuck here and a fold here he managed to squish Obama the llama into our car.

Once he was in he was fine. His fluffy white body filled the back of the car and he rested his head on the back of the driver’s headrest. As we drove home cars passed us, slowing down to look closer or take a picture with their cellphone cameras. On our way home Dad decided to make one more stop at our local ice cream store so that everyone (except the llama) could enjoy an ice cream cone on the ride home. Everyone got out of the car to order their ice cream from the front window. As we were walking back to the car carrying our ice cream cones we passed a young boy who had stopped to stare in the window of our car. He was shocked and  shouted for everyone to hear “ Mom, they have a polar bear in their car!”

Obama made it home in one piece and enjoyed a long life at Patchwork Farm. He never again rode in the station wagon. Instead of cruising around town, his days were spent grazing in the fields. In the end it all worked out. The moral of the story is think before you act, especially if you are buying a llama.”

The Heart of Effective Teaching

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woman_pulling_out_hairI recently took part in a discussion regarding the keys to effective teaching. This was a discussion that took part in a church environment with youth and adults participating together. The premise was good. The discussion revolved around how we can be better teachers but also how we be better students. The responses were abundant as both spiritual and practical suggestions were offered by those who are “in the trenches.” I found some suggestions on point and others left me cringing, because in their words I heard myself a few years ago. As comments were made about teens eating during the lesson, kids not walking reverently through the halls, teens not being present and ready to learn, and off topic discussions among students resulting in teachers not being able to get through their lessons, I heard my own frustrations being voiced from callings past.

It is hard. I sympathize with the struggles of teaching kids and teens (and even adults) in church classes, in public school, in our own homes. I get it. It is exhausting and often thankless.

I get it. I live it.

But in listening to some of the comments about the unruly and irreverent behavior problems I found myself biting my tongue, feeling the need to offer a dose of reality but struggling to put a voice to my thoughts.

I cringe when I heard some of these comments because they hit so close to home. I was that teacher that simply didn’t get it. I was blessed with three easy kids that are a teacher’s dream. They sit still, they come prepared, that don’t disrupt. I had little patience for those troublesome kids that made my time teaching a lesson more challenging than it needed to be. I felt disrespected and felt my time wasn’t valued. I felt that their parents had obviously failed in some manner to have created such “disrespectful heathens,” and found myself pridefully whispering under my breath, “My child would never…”

Then I discovered the hard truth:

The ease of my first three were not a reflection on my parenting, but rather a reflection on a life that wasn’t as challenging as some of the other students’ lives in my class.

When we adopted two boys whose lives were filled with early childhood challenges I realized that parenting these two, teaching these two, was a much more accurate reality for most children than the childhood of my first three.

But this was a lesson I only learned through this journey. So I understand when comments are made about expectations for the children in a class, because I was there not too long ago, but I found myself wanting to offer a dose of reality to the discussion:

Behind every behavior is an internal struggle trying to be voiced.

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You see a child being disruptive in class. I see a child who can’t read and is fearful of being put on the spot.

You see a child rudely leaving your class and wandering the halls. I see a child who is physically unable to sit still for 3 hours.

You see back row chatting happening when they should be sitting quiet. I see a child who needs to be heard.

You see a child who disrespectfully shows up to church in wrinkled and dirty clothes. I see a child who has nothing else to wear.

You see a child sneaking food or lying. I see a child who fears another meal might not be there.

You see a child who isn’t trying… who isn’t following through on assignments. I see a child who has MUCH BIGGER issues. Who is just trying to survive.

You see a child who always shows up late. I see a family working hard to be there at all.

You see noise and chaos. I see a child comfortable with their environment who has finally learned to trust.

You see wiggles and disobedience. I see a child who is over-stimulated.

You see a sullen, uninterested, defiant child. I see a child who doesn’t believe you love them.

I am still learning. It is still a daily challenge. As a “rule minder” by nature…as someone who find comfort in the black and white judgements in life,  I am still learning to accept that the world is a messy medley of grey.

I agree that as teachers we are working toward a certain standard of achievement, respect, learning, and reverence, but we must loving embrace the reality that what those things look like on one child are not how they appear on another. These standards are moving targets, always evolving. The goal should be improvement not perfection, because what reverence looks like on one child in this season of their life isn’t what it looks like on another child. That is the reality.

We are all on a journey, with the same destination as our goal, but we are all on very different stretches of the same road, so to expect a group of children to walk together side by side isn’t reality.

So what is the answer? Do we as teachers simply throw up our hands, give up, drop all goals or standards of behavior?

No, of course not.

We pray. We pray for each child by name, petitioning help from our Heavenly Father for wisdom and guidance, inspiration and patience beyond our own.

We listen for the guidance of the Holy Ghost. The Lord knows of each child’s circumstances, hidden struggles, and challenges and He will inspire us to know these things if we humbly set aside our own agenda and preconceived notions and devote ourselves to doing HIS work…praying, “Lord, I am merely Thy servant. Use me as Thou would. Thy will be done.”

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And then we love. We follow the example of Jesus Christ and we love.

We love people right where they are at

rather than work to make them more loveable.

You want to change the dynamic of your classroom? You want better behavior and more respect? You want children who are engaged and interested in the message you have to share? The answer is simple, as one seasoned mom and teacher shared, “Love them. Just love them. Once they know you truly love them then the rest falls into place.”

Because the reality is:

Your students won’t care how much you know,

until they know how much you care.

I will now step off my soapbox and exit stage left…

Please forgive my rant.  :)

Field Trip Friday

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Today was Field Trip Friday!

We spent the day at the Carnegie Science Center and Sports Works:

“The Carnegie Science Center is the most visited museum in Pittsburgh. It has four floors of interactive exhibits. Among its attractions are the Buhl Planetarium (which features the latest in digital projection technology), the Rangos Omnimax Theater (promoted as “the biggest screen in Pittsburgh”), SportsWorks, the Miniature Railroad & Village, the USS Requin (a World War II submarine) and roboworld, touted as “the world’s largest permanent robotics exhibition.” The roboworld exhibition contains more than 30 interactive displays featuring “all things robotic”, and is also the first physical home for Carnegie Mellon University’s Robot Hall of Fame.”

In the month of January the museum is offering $5.00 admission for groups. This is quite the discount from the usual price. Since our family membership that my parents gifted us  for Ozzie’s adoption has expired, this was a good excuse to visit at a price we could afford.  (Thank you, Rose, for planning this fun day!)

Our entire co-op attended with the exception of a few who were home sick. With the exception of a few other groups there were very few people there that day. It was a treat to be able to explore and participate in all the hands-on fun without lines or crowds. :)

It was a wonderful way to spend a blustery Friday in January. The kids got in some “friend time”, moms were able to visit, kids ran off/ climbed off/ jumped off extra energy, and we all learned some cool science lessons to boot. It was a win/win sort of day!

 

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Our crew walking over to Sports Works, a separate building that houses many interactive displays that explore the science behind sports and the human body.

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Inside Sports Works. The kids loved the low crowds.

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Ozzie having fun on the trampoline.

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Some of the teens in our co-op.

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Rusty taking a ride. I swear, every day he gets taller and taller!

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Tyler rock climbing. He made it the top…24 feet.

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One of the exhibits inside the science center was “H2O.” This exhibit was all about water. These were the seats in that room. :)

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The girls taking a break to ponder the meaning of life. :)

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At this exhibit the kids were able to step in front of a green screen, read a teleprompter, and report the weather,

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A GIANT game of “Operation.”

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Three adorable woodland creatures popping out to say “hello.”

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The miniature railroad room is my favorite part of the museum. I could spend hours examining all the magical details of this miniature world.

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I think Ozzie, Grace, and Olivia would agree.

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Tyler could spend hours playing with the floating balls.

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Centrifugal Force is so fun!

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Getting ready to take off in the roller coaster simulator.

 

What a fun way to enjoy Science!