Hello friend! I was thinking of you and wanted to share these helps for the whole family that can get us through quarantine and beyond.
It’s a time of unrest. Schedules have been changed. Many people are not able to go to their workplaces. Children are home from school, and even for homeschoolers, normal activities and routines are upended. Co-ops and extracurricular activities have stopped, and life is just plain old weird. (Sometimes I feel as if I’m in the middle of a novel, don’t you?!) The worry and concern for our health is real, but many of us are even more concerned about economic changes. We also miss gathering together. We miss our old “norm.”
Yet our family members and kiddos need us to remain calm more than ever at this time. They need to witness our trust in our Powerful Lord who is over every small molecule and germ, and who also provides for His children in so many ways. For some, the slower pace can be a blessing as we remember what’s most important. Taking out all the “extras” can bring back our focus on true priorities. We’re rediscovering simplicity and are reminded that going back to the basics can be a good thing.
Friend, consider these days as ones where you can rediscover peace. (Yes, really!) Here are resources, tips, and helps for the whole family!
For A Peaceful Home:
Let your children see your home as a haven of prayer. Let them see you praying for them and encouraging them to pray. Check out this article: How to pray for your child each day, and download the printable 7 Prayers to Say for Your Children.
If you’re struggling with worried, anxious or angry kids, here are resources to help.
The Calming Angry Kids Video Blog Series can be especially helpful right now in helping there to be peace within the home.
Need a New Routine?
Keeping kids on a schedule, even if it’s a loose one, makes them feel safe and secure. Chore charts can curb complaining when it comes to daily, household chores.
FOR YOUR MARRIAGE:
First and foremost keep your marriages a top priority. Enjoy this Walk it Out Podcast with Matt and Lisa Jacobson, to help strengthen your marriage. You have the power to speak words that will affect your spouse not just today but for the rest of his/her life.
This would also be a good time to get 100 Words of Affirmation Your Wife Needs to Hear and 100 Words of Affirmation Your Husband Needs to Hear. They are great books!
In this stressful time, it would be so easy to neglect each other, become short with one another, or just not take the time to communicate as couples should. Instead, speak words of love and encouragement and grow closer during this time.
Here’s another resource by my friend Sharon Jaynes. In the Song of Solomon, Solomon prayed that he and his Shulammite would watch out for the “little foxes” that could sneak in and sabotage the blooming vineyard of their love. (Song 2:15). But just as those foxes can sneak in and ruin a blooming relationship, they can also sneak in and wreck a mature marriage.
Little foxes are anything or anyone that can creep in and weaken a marriage. If they aren’t dealt with, little foxes become big foxes with fangs of disappointment and claws of resentment. You can read more about how to get rid of the little foxes and keep passion alive at this time.
For the Moms:
Mamas, you might find encouragement in these posts:
My article Homeschooling Basics has lots of practical tips and helps for those who maybe have been thrust into teaching your kids at home through the Covid-19, but can also be a great reminder for veteran home educators.
My advice for “educating” your kids during this time is to stay simple with LOTS and LOTS of reading. Books can be a great launching point for teaching gratitude for your family even during these tough times. Check out all these wonderful books that teach kids not to grumble and complain.
I have tips for writers, too! (Why not start that book you’ve been wanting to write?)
I’m super excited to give you four free lessons called Let Me Help You Write a Novel. Enjoy these lessons with videos and downloadable worksheets. Let your child explore creative writing and learn a love for it they may never have had before!
Lesson 1: Mine your life for fiction
Lesson 2: Character Motivation
Lesson 3: Basic Novel Outline
Lesson 4: Turn Off Your Internal Editor
I love Sonlight and this little book is a fun way for your children to investigate for themselves.
We also love all of their Math Adventures. It makes math less of a chore and makes it playful and fun!
In the Kitchen:
Again, I would encourage you to keep your meals simple and fun. Include your kids as you cook, and try new, easy foods.
Many years ago when I was pushing for a book deadline I asked some of my mom-friends to give me ideas for quick, easy meals that had 5 ingredients or less. These are some of the ideas they sent me:
*Cover bottom of a skillet with Italian dressing and add cubed chicken, sweet onion, potatoes and zucchini
*Tater tot casserole
*Frozen Chicken breast + salsa in a crockpot all day
I hope all these helps are an encouragement to you during this time! Our children need lots of love, structure, and direction to look to the Lord of all the Earth … and so do we.
Each of us, can take this time of trial and turn it into a time of rich fruitfulness and blessing! I would love to hear some of the things you are learning from the Lord.
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