This week was a very short week of formal schooling. Being homeschoolers, we see life as one great big ‘school’ but there are times when I fall back into the habit of seeing school as just the time we do formal school work. This week was one of these. We only had Wednesday as a formal school day as Tuesday was a public holiday. (I am sure that we are the only place in the world where you get a day off for a horse race!!). Monday morning was spent mostly travelling to the hospital and home again for Princess’s (10) six monthly echocardiogram. We are so fortunate to have such expert medical care available and Princess is watched well in relation to a chronic illness that affected her heart when we went to Mozambique two years ago.
Monday afternoon we spent with older folk whom the kids love connecting with. These folk had their grandchildren who are four and two years old staying with them. The kids enjoy catching up with these little ones. I see it as a valuable learning experience for them to help care for kids younger than themselves. The folk put a huge cardboard box in their backyard and all the kids loved painting it for a cubby house.
I nursed in the Coronary Care Unit on the Sunday and Tuesday, so that automatically decreased the amount of time I had available for the family. Thursday, Friday and Saturday was a conference at church at which we attended for the first two days. Hubby and I were both involved in the prophetic presbytery on the first two days giving prophetic words to people every fifteen minutes. People booked in for these words and we would just ask God what He wanted to say to them and we would deliver the picture and words to them. It is always so exciting to see how God works in people’s lives and be involved in something that can really encourage and transform someone’s life.
Family fun Saturday we were booked in to attend the conference but both hubby and I were tired and really felt that we needed to do something just as a family. Something fun. We have had a lot on over the last few weeks and time was needed just as a family. We decided to go ten pin bowling. The kids had never been before and they loved it. I just loved their expressions when we told them what we were going to do. We had a blast. It was so much fun.
Before we went ten pin bowling, Princess went out for breakfast with hubby on a father daughter date whilst Matey (7) had triathlon training (Princess is not allowed to do any sport for another week due to having her adenoids removed last week) & I had a very pleasant quiet two hours catching up on housework. It is rare to have time alone at home, even if it is just housecleaning!! The kids (& myself) are shocked at how much mess the new pet bird is making.
We then came home from ten pin bowling and Matey had wanted to build a Lego tower that went from the floor to the ceiling. Unfortunately he was using only 2×2 Lego bricks and it soon collapsed. We all pitched in and helped him, with Princess getting right into it. She built a 4×4 Lego brick tower with her name incorporated down the side in the opposite coloured brick. A great family time. It was also a learning time about how wide the base really needs to be to be able to stand on its own.
Late Saturday afternoon we then watched a DVD that the kids requested. It is called ‘A Courageous Heart’. Unfortunately it is M rated due to the mature themes and two spots of violence where the kids covered their eyes as people were shot. Great conversation afterwards about what we would do in that situation. It is a true story based on the life of Irena Sendler who, as a Catholic social worker, risked her own life to save the lives of over 2,500 Jewish children in a ghetto in Poland during the Second World War. Very interesting to chat with the kids about looking out for ourselves or looking out for others.
Prophetic words We were asked to give a prophetic word to two teenagers having birthdays in the next few weeks. Our family loves sitting down and asking God for a picture or word for these people. The kids tend to draw pictures and then we need to ‘draw’ out of them what the picture means. Hubby and I, apart from the prophetic presbytery at the conference, were also involved in giving prophetic words over the children’s ministry leaders and team members on the Sunday morning plus also the grade 6 kids who were graduating to the youth group. Meanwhile, in both Princess and Matey’s classes, they were giving prophetic words over photos of friends of their classmates. I love how our church takes it seriously and teaches and trains kids in this vital area.
Books 4 Cambodia Some individuals have given us some books this week for which we are thankful. It has really taken most of the week to sort and pack what we had already collected from schools the previous week. We currently have approx 7,000 books sorted and packed in 59 boxes. It takes about a day to sort and pack 1,000 books so we are realising that we need to be more protective of our time and put boundaries in place whilst doing this project as it can easily swallow up every available minute.
Mission We had a close friend over for dinner last week. She had just returned from a trip to the Philippines. I love exposing our kids to what others are doing to help other people. The kids also have close friends, a family of 3 kids with the mum pregnant, also in the Philippines helping out. We have loved looking at their photos of visiting the garbage dump and of handing out rice to those affected by the earthquake and typhoon. It is a great learning experience about how money we give here can buy so much rice to feed people over there who have nothing to eat due to the typhoon and earthquake. If anyone would like to doante money for rice for people affected, I can assure you that 100% of the money will get to the folk needing the rice. Let me know & I will give you the details.
Re-energising me Last week, some homeschooling mums met together to encourage each other. Homeschooling can become overwhelming if you let it, as so much is focussed on the kids. This is a time when these mums meet together to input into each other. The kids hive off and play, it being a fine day so the boys were running around outside and the girls were playing board games. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to get to this group each month as we have always had something else on. It is one of those activities that it is only when you go that you realise what you have been missing out on.
It was a fantastic two hours of praying and prophesying and just sharing and encouraging each other. I came home with a new book to read (I love reading good books) and we had seen a fantastic miracle. We had prayed for one mum who a fortnight before had been booked in to have both her hips replaced as they were in such a bad condition and she was in constant horrific pain and couldn’t bend etc. Because she wasn’t an Australian citizen, it was going to cost over $26,000 so she decided to put it off as she didn’t have the money. As we prayed for her, she felt like warm gold was being poured out over her. She managed to stand up and could move her legs at angles she hadn’t been able to for a long time. She then went out to the car to go home and came racing back inside to share with us that as she got into the car, she could do it with ease and no pain whatsoever. Ten days later she is still painfree and able to move in ways that she hasn’t for years. Isn’t God good!!!!
Behavioural optometry Matey has been having fortnightly appointments with a behavioural optometrist to help him with his visual and auditory processing. There has been daily repetitive homework for the last 13 weeks and we have now finished this stage of the program. At times I have felt like we were getting nowhere as it seemed like Matey could remember stuff one day and not the next, but overall it has been very significant and it has helped him immensely. His ability to concentrate and recall details has improved immensely. A fantastic side benefit has been his ability to read and spell has improved dramatically. As a result, his self-confidence has risen. I am glad though, of a break in the intensity of the program for awhile. It was at least an extra hour of intense work with him every day.
I hope you all had a great week. I would love to hear some of your family’s stories about how you are raising kids to change the world in their own way.