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Fi mum23

Royalty, Wife, Mummy, friend, teacher, student & fitness blogger

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Trust

Why worry… God totally has this !!

Who woulda thought, but man oh man, it’s complicated making decisions in regards to your children’s schooling pathway.  As you al know, I homeschool my 3 treasures, but it’s more accurate to say that they do Distance Education.  We are ‘homeschooling’ this particular semester due to changes at the school we were enrolled with, but this was always going to be a temporary arrangement until I found the best DE fit for my children.  I thought I had found it when I was told of a new College opening only 2 suburbs away, but further investigation proved that maybe it wasn’t.  Nothing against their curriculum or activities on offer, (that, in fact, was awesome) but I’ve been finding that my children are getting rather bored with their ACE paces.  While they probably would have reasonably happily continued with their paces throughout their schooling, I don’t believe I’m being a responsible parent to just continue with something they’ll toretate, but should find something that they will actually LOVE. (well, ok, at least really like.)

DH has also shown some concern over this year and last with the kids not doing a huge amount of computer work, with their curriculum being almost 100% paperwork etc.  This is always been a little bit of a concern for us as it doesn’t entirely prepare them for university where they will predominantly work on computer, transferring files, uploading /downloading files, making spreadsheets, scanning in & emailing images, getting files from one digital device to another etc etc.  As well as future workplace proceedures possibly involving all of the above and maybe more.  The on-line DE will much more thoroughly prepare them for the future.

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So, as a result, everyone is very happy with the decision to go with on-line DE as of first semester 2016.  Well, Master 10 won’t be so happy, as he has a further year of paces before he can go onto on-line curriculum as a grade 7er in 2017.

It has certainly been an interesting journey if I look back on the kids starting school, until now.  It seemed like it was going to be such a seamless pathway.  In lots of ways it was while they were at ‘mainstream’ school, but I guess with Miss 14 getting into the high school subjects, it makes things a bit more challenging.  Decisions needs to be made etc so as to have the BEST pathway mapped out for her to reach her desired goal.  And with Master 13 only two years behind her in school, these decisions aren’t far away for him either.

While the ACE paces hold a lot of great content, and revise a lot of important topics often, they are proving to be a little boring for the kids at the end of this second year.  Now, having said that, I don’t want to knock ACE as a curriculum as I really do think it is a sound resource, but I think it just comes down to different kids suiting different styles of learning, etc.  It is a real blessing to have been able to have these 2yrs with all 3 kids at home on the ACE paces and I don’t regret this pathway.

God has truly been so faithful to us through this time. One of those ‘memories’ came up on FB last week. It was a memory of the school holidays ending 5 yrs ago and I was saying that I would miss the kids when they returned to school, and then jokingly said “Maybe I should homeschool them”…. followed by a comment that went something like this “Nah, I care too much for my sanity to do that. LOL”  Very funny to read back on when you see how the journey mapped out later.  Is my Sanity in place??  Probably not at times (LOL), but I know that I’ve followed God’s leading throughout.

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With all this in mind, it makes me pretty excited to see what God has in store for us in the future.  Even when something has seemed confusing or illogical, we’ve always been able to look back and see that it was the best path for us as a family…. proving that God’s totally got this !!

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

I can’t blog about this without once again mentioning the great Godly friendships that I have in my life, both homeschooling Mums, mainstream school Mums, and also educators.  I know that God has placed these people in my life to confirm leading from Him.  (& when needed, correct me of misunderstood leading.).  It’s also beyond beneficial to have friends going through the same decisions and being able to discuss things with them, bouncing ideas off one another etc.  I am also so grateful for the help we’ve had from seasoned homeschool parents who’s children are through and now into university, or even completely through uni and now in the workforce.  It’s been of great encouragement to have these seasoned HS parents to speak to as it really highlights how much diversity can be in a child’s schooling pathway.  For example, I have some friends who have solely schooled with ACE from Prep to 12 and now their children are either in Uni or successful in the workforce, others did part HS (with ACE or other great curriculum) and part on-campus schooling.  (This seems to be more prevalent in the southern states… it doesn’t seem to happen so much up here… although that could be changing.)

Also, there are many situations where children are HS’d up to grade 10 and then they go to a good day school for senior. I just love the diversity and that we as parents can really take control of our children’s education and make sure they are learning in a way that is best for them as a whole person !!

There are certain elements of our homeschooling lives that I won’t change with the transfer over to this new DE plan.  The most obvious being normal household chores and responsibilities (Some might be saying “Well, why would you think of changing these anyway?” but I’m mentioning it because some of these are within the school day, so I’m just making the point that these will continue around the on-line schooling set-up.).  The 2nd being our Character training.  I’ll still have the kids work on a particular character trait and corresponding scripture verse for a period of time that I will determine as suitable.  Also, excursions separate to those of the school we’ll be enrolled with.  I will continue to attend other homeschool excursions, as well as organise excursions with other homeschoolers.

So now to dive into the on-line diagnostic testing !!  Woot Woot !!  Fun times ahead !

Blessings Peeps !!  xox

 

Being in good company

I’m gonna be honest. .  I’m struggling tonight. 
I want to be walking the right path.. I NEED to be walking the right path as I have little eyes watching me and little ears listening to me.  (and some big eyes & ears too)
However these very encouraging facts don’t make the path any easier.  The bumps are still there,  the ‘stones’ are still thrown, the misconceptions of me by others are still there. 
I solidly believe that I not only witness to my children through things that I say,  but possibly even more so by things that I DON’T.  When I’m abused by a family member and I don’t respond in like tone or with harsh words.  When I’m treated like a ‘goodie-two-shoes’ but choose to stay silent and not ‘defend myself’.
When I’m outright verbally attacked,  but refuse to take the bait and retaliate. .. they see that.   & you know what else they see… the frustration on the person’s face when I won’t lower myself to their level. 
Isn’t it interesting (& frustrating) that we can KNOW that God’s opinion is the only one that matters and yet the darts fired by others still hurt.  I often wish that I was impervious to these comments etc but I also know that I am taught a lesson through everything single dig at me,  every single comment made. .. and every single not-so-subtle insult on Facebook. 
I actually started this blog last night but the fact that I stopped part way through turned out to be a blessing in itself as I actually needed to be reminded of my own words when dealing with someone today.  
Praise The Lord it was actually a really great day today spent at the beach with Miss 14 & niece 17 (well great day except for the sunburnt back of the legs. .. what on earth).  Lots of time to think and talk to Jesus while the girls were out paddle boarding.  Something about being at the beach (I think it’s actually in any natural setting) that gets me closer to God.

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I am constantly blown away of late with the relevance of each mornings devotion and how it has been speaking directly into current situations & struggles. If you don’t do a morning devotion,  I’d really encourage you to as it is just the BEST way to start the day. 
So, getting back to my title. .. with all that I’ve been dealing with in days of late… I am comforted knowing that Jesus was hated,  he was ridiculed,  he was treated as a fool… so when I feel treated like this. . I know I’m in good company. 
Blessings peeps xox

Eat clean.. train dirty… trust God

Eat clean… train dirty… Trust God !! So… after an up & down kinda day. . I’ve decided this is going to be this season’s hashtag.
I have had 2 opportunities in recent days to be pretty naughty with my clean eating plan. .. and I am so happy to say that on both occasions,  I was able to either stick with my clean eating. . Or in the one instance I didn’t,  it was such a minor ‘slip up’ that I didn’t even feel the need to beat myself up over it.
I am actually really pleased with my resolution on this.  I just know that I know that God is providing me with the strength and perseverance I’m asking for,  as I normally wouldn’t be able to resist these ‘treats’. As I said on a previous blog entry. . My bodies likes & dislikes are changing.
I’m also loving having my 17yr niece to bounce ideas off. She is a vegetarian recently having gone completely vegan, so she is full of fab healthy ideas.  She seriously makes the best healthy snacks… that you wouldn’t even think are healthy.

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(Ps.. She didn’t actually make THESE exact ones. . But hers do look just as yummy)
I’m also experimenting with my new Nutri-infusion which has been amazing !! I am really so happy with it. . It actually DOES do everything they say it does, which can be rare for things bought off the tv.  A friend  and I did a shop at the local fruit & veg market yest,  so I’m well & truly stocked up for some yummy nutritious goodness in smoothy form.

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This actually was my daughter’s first smoothy attempt, but I used her pic seeing as my smoothy had spinach in it so therfore wasn’t this pretty colour.

I read some interesting information last night about drinking berry based drinks with your food as it assists with digestion due to the acidic content.
Here’s some healthy info for you all on this and other healthy gut foods. …

What is the key to good gut health? The answer is bacteria, millions of which inhabit the digestive tract breaking down food, helping to propel food through the digestive tract and providing protection against harmful invading organisms.

Foods that are high in fibre, rich in nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, or that contain live probiotics, will encourage the growth of health-promoting bacteria colonies and support overall equilibrium balance in the digestive tract. Eating foods that are overly refined, processed or low in fibre will meanwhile place additional strain on the digestive system, potentially disrupting the important balance of health-promoting bacteria.

Berries are an excellent food for digestive health. They provide a good source of fibre, antioxidants, and polyphenols, which can selectively favour beneficial colonies of bacteria in the digestive tract.

Recent research on polyphenols has shown they interact with beneficial species of bacteria (similar to pre-biotics, which “feed” the good bacteria). The interactions encourage healthy bacteria growth. All types of berries, whether fresh or frozen, contain polyphenols.

Seaweed & chia seeds, as well as cruciferous vegetables (kale, cabbage, broccoli and silverbeet, to name just a few) are excellent foods for gut health; they provide various phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals, as well as a good source of fibre. Phytonutrients can benefit the gut by increasing the balance of good bacteria and also contain anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.

The fibre content of cruciferous vegetables is particularly important as it can help move food through the digestive tract. The fibre in leafy greens in particular also promotes the growth of good bacteria. Pre-biotics are food sources for healthy bacteria; without them the healthy bacteria (probiotics) are unable to grow. Hence, the growth of beneficial colonies of bacteria is largely depending on the intake of both probiotic and pre-biotic foods.
Yoghurt is also fantastic but it should always taste sour, not sweet. The sourness is a reflection of the lactic-acid bacteria that have developed during the fermentation process in the milk.

Regular consumption of yoghurt can positively influence the balance of microflora in the gut, creating more of the “good guys”, such as lactobacillus and bifidobacterium probiotics. These types of probiotics can help manufacture B-complex vitamins, as well as vitamins A and K, which are great for overall health as well as playing a role in a well-functioning digestive tract. They also help boost the immune system and inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria.

Sadly (coz I don’t really like it) oily fish – such as salmon, sardines and mackerel are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, such as EPA, and DOHA. These fatty acids can play a vital role in healthy bowel function. They can work to lubricate the digestive tract and keep digestion flowing smoothly. They can also help to reduce inflammation and strengthen the intestinal lining, which can help to protect against gastrointestinal diseases.

& lastly in my disgestion lesson for tonight (lol)… Ginger is a traditional spice, revered throughout Asia for its ability to relieve gas and reduce abdominal bloating. In herbal medicine, it is considered to be an “intestinal spasmolytic” – in other words, a substance that can relax and sooth the digestive tract.

The active component of fresh ginger, known as gingerol contains anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties, which can alleviate symptoms associated with gastrointestinal discomfort.

Aren’t you all glad I’ve educated in this fascinating topic?  Well, if it doesn’t interest you,  try to get interested coz I can tell you that my body is a whole lot happier on a clean eating diet.
It does seem ‘un-fun’ at times,  but that usually only happens when your 1. Using boring ingredients,  or 2. Not thinking outside the box.
When it comes down to it,  it’s really all quite interesting and worth educating yourself on.
Ok peeps… that’s enough from me for tonight.
Blessings xox

I will Carry you !!

Good morning Peeps !!

So, I am nearly finished reading Angie Smith’s ‘I will Carry You’.  Now, I knew of this story quite some time ago as I am a big Selah fan (hymns ROCK) (Angie’s husband Todd is the lead singer) so had heard of this after it happening etc.  I had watched a few interviews with Todd & Angie but had simply never gotten around to ordering and then reading the book.

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I cannot even tell you how blessed I have been by reading this book, and on so many levels too.  The interesting thing though is that I don’t identify with Angie when it comes to the loss of a child, as I have never experienced it.. not even with a close family member as Angie’s family did with Todd’s sister losing her son Luke to SIDS only a month after their Audrey went to be with The Lord.  I have been blessed in other areas… my parenting, my walk with The Lord, my relationship with my husband and so much more.

You could easily, as I did, assume that you know what you’re going to get out of this book before you even read it.  The loss of a child, experiencing God’s peace in their terrible situation, and coming out the other side a stronger person experiencing a closer relationship with God.  Yes, that all happens… but OH MY GOODNESS so much more !!!

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I did cry a lot when reading this book.. like a LOT !!!!  Like a really really LOT !  The Mother’s heart is soft and tender towards her children and the idea of having something so terrible happen to them is beyond comprehension for most people.  I mean, we could certainly try and put ourselves in Angie’s position as she takes us through each and every experience in her book (More crying), but what can easily overwhelm me is that reading about it, imagining it, feeling her pain through reading the words on the page, would not even come close to the pain you would feel to actually experience that type of loss yourself.

Now, THAT right there is where I can stumble.  I have to work VERY hard to not fall into fear at this point.  As I said, I’ve never lost a child, not even to miscarriage etc.  I did experience great sadness and guilt when finding out my boys were blind and had a difficult road ahead, but nothing was ever life threatening and when you get right down to it, it’s been a great outcome overall.  I don’t know why but I decided to torture myself last night by searching up a few YouTube tributes to babies lost in ways similar to Audrey.  They are, to say the very lease, heartbreaking.  I mean, seriously, the idea of holding you dead baby in your arms….  TORTURE !!!

It would have to test your faith.  I did love that Angie was so honest in her book.  She told us that she screamed at God in those times, she begged him to ‘re-think’ His plan, she got angry with Him… and don’t we all do that at times.  What is so fantastic though is that God is ok with that, as long as we take all that to HIM !!  He KNOWS Angie’s pain, He gave  His only son, He watched Him suffer, He watched Him tortured and treated in ways no human should ever be treated.  It hurt Him so much to see what was being done to His son.  Imagine what it would have taken for Him to not intervene when we all know He could have.  Jesus was so humble in His attitude in EVERY situation.  It blows me away to meditate on just how much he endured for US.  When we can focus on the blessings we have as a result of His sacrifice… a no-barrier relationship with God, the friend we have in The Holy Spirit, the protection we have in being armed with warfare tools, and the peace we have though Jesus Christ, as well as so much more.

I did particularly love a point in the book that spoke to parenting and how we need to gauge when our children are old/mature enough for certain knowledge.  Angie experienced this many times with 5yr old twins and a 2.5yr old.  How much info can they take in to their tender hearts?  What is ok for them to see?  A wonderful excerpt from Corrie Ten Boom’s ‘The Hiding Place’ was included.

“And so seated next to my father in the train compartment, I suddenly asked, “Father, what is sexsin?”
He turned to look at me, as he always did when answering a question, but to my surprise he said nothing. At last he stood up, lifted his traveling case off the floor and set it on the floor.
Will you carry it off the train, Corrie?” he said.
I stood up and tugged at it. It was crammed with the watches and spare parts he had purchased that morning.
It’s too heavy,” I said.
Yes,” he said, “and it would be a pretty poor father who would ask his little girl to carry such a load. It’s the same way, Corrie, with knowledge. Some knowledge is too heavy for children. When you are older and stronger, you can bear it. For now you must trust me to carry it for you.”

What is also very relevant here is the ‘Parenting inside the funnel’ teaching found in the Growing Kids God’s Way course by the Growing Families ministry .  DH & I have parented based on this diagram since doing the course in 2007.  I strongly believe that this is one BIG problem area in the world today.  An issue my children have been up against basically there whole lives is having friends who are allowed to watch/play things that DH & I believed at the time was beyond our children’s maturity level.  Even now when my children go to the movies with friends or have a movie night, more often than not, the choices are beyond what we would see as suitable for our children’s eyes, ears & heart.

If you aren’t aware of the Parenting within the funnel diagram, here it is.

Boundaries Lead-Article

We have found that this method works really well.  It’s not just about what they are ‘allowed’ to do either, it’s about what we as parents should expect of them.  We simply cannot expect the same level of maturity in a situation from our 10yr old as we do from our 14yr old.

Getting back to the book..  Angie went on to write a song for Audrey which was recorded by Selah.  I highly recommend you searching it up on YouTube and having a listen.  It’s simply beautiful.   The book itself was only $17.99 from The Book Depository.  I always find their stock range fantastic, as well as the prices themselves and the shipping is always FREE !!  Shipping time is always fab too.  I always have it in under a week.

As always… I feel I could type on for so much longer on this topic…  I think there may need to be a ‘part B’ of this blog when I actually finish the book later tonight.

Blessings Peeps !!  xox

The Negative Ned Caboose !!

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So, once again, (well, the for the third time in however many years I’ve been on FB), I’ve decided to jump off the FaceBook train.  A few reasons for this..

1.  (the obvious one !).. it’s a TIMEWASTER !!

2. I like the idea of being forced to actually make a phone call in order to find out what is going on with those I care about…  whether I’ll actually pick that phone up is another thing.. but here’s hoping.   Even a letter could be fab….  Mmmmm.. will have to get motivated.

3.  I’m a little battle weary as a result of being hit with many many many nasty and negative comments after giving my opinion, when asked for it, on the subject of Halal Certification on a TV show FB page. This is a topic that I feel very strongly about, and even though I know these people are mostly uneducated morons who have nothing better to do than attack strangers from behind their keyboard, it still leaves a dent and a bruise at times.  @shieldsuppeeps .

So, I have made the 24hr mark now of not being on/checking FB.  What has it highlighted to me?  Well, for one, the amount of times per day I go to look at it.  I’ve decided I’m going to treat it like a fast.  Every time I think of it, I’ll use that opportunity to speak to my Heavenly Father.  I noticed myself doing that yesturday anyway.  I was pleasantly surprised when I would go to pick up my phone etc to check FB, pull myself up for it, but then realise it didn’t bother me in the slightest to not look.  I would send a quiet thank you heavenward for the heart change He had obviously done in me in order for it not to bother me.

It seems like such a ridiculous subject to be talking about, let alone blogging about, but the reality for so many people is that FB is one of the biggest factors of their day.  So many are intrigued as to what is going on with others, good & bad.  Don’t get me wrong, FB can be a fantastic tool to bring people together, highlight prayer needs of others, getting a message out to the masses etc etc.  I’ll almost certainly go back to it at some point.  But like so many other things today, it’s also hijacked by those with bad intentions.  The recent Duggar family story really highlighted that for me.. to just see how many were happy to jump on social media and say the most awful things about a complete stranger, when in most cases, their comments alone showed that they had not read anything on the subject, they were just going along with the Negative Ned Caboose (Yes, I just called it a Negative Ned Caboose… so there.  LOL).

I’m struggling in this area at the moment.. just to find a way of happily living & functioning in a world where so many are happy to attack others, and in most cases, it’s just for the sake of it.  I have complete faith in my Heavenly Father’s hand being over all things.. and I also know that even logic alone will tell you that things are getting intense in these end times.  Reality is still in play though.. I still need to get up each day, devote time to my husband, homeschool my children, pay bills, do the groceries, get together with friends, be apart of a church family, take my kids to the many different sports & activities they do each week… and all the other things that make up LIFE.  It gets tough when you have to do all these things with a smile on your face, knowing that at times you’re going to encounter others who don’t have the same Godly mindset as you.

There’s that balance that we all need to find…. surrounding ourselves with Godly friends who will encourage us, keep us accountable, and just generally ‘do life with’, but we also need to always be mindful of our biggest job here… to save the lost for The LORD.  We can’t do that if we hole ourselves up with only our like-minded friends.

I was just saying to my DH last night that it’s really easy to look back BA (what I fondly call my ‘Before Awakening’ which is about 3.5yrs ago now) and think it was so much easier/simpler back then.. no concept of the Spiritual Realm, the power of words, the enemy’s cunning ways, before the days of actually SEEING into the spiritual realm & finding that there is so so so much more going on here than our little lives and those around us.  But there is just far too much ENCOURAGEMENT to be taken from these things to even consider life being ‘better’ before I was made aware of them.

I must say I shudder to think what I would have said before God had I been taken Home BA when he asked me “What did you do with the gifts I gave you?”  I probably would have been like “What gifts? Did you send me something?  Maybe I missed the card.”  haha.  With this in mind, and although it requires a heck of a lot of commitment and dedication, I cannot be more thankful for my awakening.  I now know that I wasn’t just lucky or blessed to be given the parents I have, the siblings I have, the Husband & children I have.. and even the friends I have.  I was placed exactly where I am, with the people that surround me, and even in this particular time, because it’s how God planned it.

The kids one is a big one for me. BA, I was just like “Lucky me…  3 healthy children, no fertility issues, pretty cruisy pregnancies & births… aren’t I just blessed.”  Which of course, is true… I WAS blessed with all those things, but I never put too much thought into what I was raising these children to be.. future husbands, wives, employees & maybe bosses, friends, & so much more.  I certainly don’t want my children to be 35 before they have their awakening with The Lord.  I need to be speaking to their heart condition NOW and right through their childhood.  I need to be teaching them of their responsibility in HIStory too. They’ve been giving gifts too, they too have a part to play.  The enemy has done a very good job convincing us all that we deserve EVERYTHING we want or desire.  We have a RIGHT to everything.  Well, actually NO, we don’t have a right to anything.  We are PRIVILEGED to have what we have.

I will continue to teach my children Humility !!  Believe me, it’s probably one of the hardest things to be constantly instilling, as everything that surrounds them tell them the complete opposite…  The world says “Put yourself first, above all things.”  Humility tells us to put others before ourselves in all situations.

So, in conclusion of my very muddled, probably not articulated well blog today is that I need to keep CLOSE to The LORD at all times, draw near to HIM in EVERY situation, because EVERY situation .. my parenting, my relationship with my Husband, my relationship with friends, etc etc, need to be done under HIS guidance, because basically, if I do it guided by ANYTHING else, it will only lead to heartache, whether it be short-lived or long !!

Trust-in-the-Lord-with-All-My-Heart-  DECLARE IT PEEPS !!!!!

Blessings !!! xox

Lack of blogging… Naughty Fi :0(

Hiya peeps !!!
I can’t believe that had I waited until t’row, it would’ve been TWO MONTHS with no blogging.. How uncommitted of me.
BUT.. can’t change that.. so let’s move on…
It’s 2015 !! WHAT THE ?? How did THAT happen ? Well, the normal way I guess. LOL.

In 3 sleeps, we’ll dive into our 2nd year as a homeschooling family !! WOW, that’s all I can say.. WOW!!!
I made it.. I actually made it through one entire year.. with pleasing results.. and an even deeper passion to continue to educate my children in this way. While I’ll always give them the option, I hope to never have my children in mainstream school again.
All 3 have grown in so many positive ways since we began this journey, and we’re not looking back.. Onward and upward. :0) (actually.. always upward… looking to Christ.. AT ALL TIMES !!)

An interesting development for us is that we are off on an exciting adventure in just under 7wks… We’re off to explore outback Australia… Yes, we’ve all lived here our entire lives, but have never been to the red centre. We’re taking 3wks, hiring a motorhome, and planning on having a BLAST !!! Much blogging will occur, I’m sure.

Also, what’s been on our hearts a lot is the current political climate, concern of terrorism, etc etc. BUT, we know that with God, ALL things are possible… and we need to continue to TRUST in HIM and not lean on our own understanding !! Man, if we lent on our own understanding with these current terror threats, we’d go bonkers. Logically.. it looks hopeless, but with GOD… we KNOW He has a plan, and He knows the outcome.. and it’s for our GOOD !!!

OK peeps.. I hope you are all well.
Blessings in abundance xox

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