Wednesday, July 30, 2008


While this may seem like a "no brainer" to some, I am continually surprised at the number of families who do not have their children doing chores. My children do chores from the time they are 2 and some even before that. Of course a 2 year old isn't really "doing" anything but it is great training ground for later. At that age they help me put away their clothes, transfer wet clothes to the dryer, wipe down chairs or cabinets etc... I write up a schedule of all their weekly jobs and post it on our refrigerator. (I change things up usually every 9 months or so) Each child has a kitchen job every day and each child has to make up their bed and straighten their room everyday. Each of my kids has one day a week that they are "kitchen help" and they love this! That child helps me wash, chop, stir, bake and serve dinner. We spend time together and I can easily teach them all kinds of things from kitchen safety to nutritional information.

My kids also wash their own clothes...even their bed linens! I help my two youngest..6 & 8 but the other 3 totally do their own. I do all towels separately and I am not super picky about them separating things..most of my boys clothes are play clothes and my girls have been taught how to separate and hang dry certain items. I recently did a workshop and a mom told me that her concern was her kids might not do well at separating their clothes. You might have a bigger problem than you think if your kids can't tell lights from darks. In all seriousness...your kids are capable of more than you think!

You can't just make up a list and expect them to have to start by training them...let them help you a few times on a particular task then you help them and then you observe them. It takes a little time at first but the payoff is huge! During the week my kids chores are light because of school work (about 20 min worth...10 for my youngest) and on Friday and Saturday they have more ( about 45 min. .....20 for little guys) I am going to put the chores listed for my 10 year old so that you can get some ideas.

*Mon. Straighten room, wipe kitchen table and chairs, water plants
*Tues. Straighten room, unload dishwasher, vacuum living room
*Wed. Straighten room, sweep kitchen, wipe off stove top, kitchen help
*Thur. Straighten room, wipe kitchen table and counters, laundry(her own)
*Friday straighten room, clean girls sink & mirror, dust 1/2 of living room, sweep kitchen, wipe table and counters in kitchen
*Sat. straighten room, vacuum room and school room, sweep hall downstairs, trash downstairs, move and wipe kitchen chairs, mop dining room, unload dishwasher.

I hope that this helps! Love those babies! Michele

Monday, July 28, 2008

Order Please!

I had the awesome privilege of speaking to many women this past weekend at a womens conference and I received quite a few questions and subsequent emails about various things that I spoke about. In the next few entries I am going to try to answer a few of those.

What is the most important ingredient to having order in your home?

I know that some of my friends laugh that "I" am being asked this question...GAY BROWN...because well lets just say you had better call before you drop in so I can be sure to get dressed:) In all seriousness...I am NOT a hyper organized gal. I am not a hyper scheduled gal but I have learned over the years that things run so much smoother when you have a routine and a PLAN! Your babies are happier when they are on some form of a schedule and this really does carry over throughout their whole lives.

Without a plan your day will be one big blur. We have all had those days when it is 3:00 in the afternoon and it seems we have been spinning our wheels all day and we have accomplished nothing! Well without a plan those days will be more and more frequent! So until next time start praying about the goals for your family and remember......Love those Babies!! Michele

Fire Proof!!

I will write more about this later and maybe even get some video up so you can see it. We were asked to view a special screening of the new movie Fireproof made by the same group that made Facing the Giants. It was amazing! What an incredible story! Mike Catt is the pastor at Sherwood Baptist(he used to be my youth pastor :) many, many, many years ago!!) and he has done an awesome job in leading the charge in encouraging these movies! I am so excited to see what the Lord has in store for them! Remember always....Love those Babies! Michele

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Best Thing that you can give your kids.

There are many things that you can give your children. Obviously the most important thing that will ever happen in their own life is Jesus but when your children are still very young, the best thing that you can do for them is for you to have a strong intimate relationship with Jesus. Have a special quiet time every Gods word and pray for your family! You will be better equipped to handle whatever comes your way when you have a strong relationship with the Lord.

The second thing that you can give your kids is a strong intimate relationship with your husband! Your children need that security. It will effect how they relate to the Lord and how they will relate to their spouse one day. Respect your husband and do not ever cut him down. Be very careful even if you are talking to a friend that you do not say anything about him that your children might hear and understand. Some of you may be single moms and you sometimes feel discouraged....take heart....there is a verse that says that God will be a father to the fatherless. I do believe that this verse is talking about the home where the father is gone either through death or abandonment, but I also know that the Lord stands ready and willing to stand in the gap!

If you are saying....this is overwhelming....I do not know where to begin???? when you wake up in the morning open your Bible to Proverbs. Proverbs has 31 chapters...just the right amount for each day of the month. Every day read the Proverb that correlates with that date. I have been doing this for about 7 years.... I love it!!! Proverbs is so rich and so applicable! I study deeper in the evening after my kids go to bed but always a Proverb in the morning! Try it, you will see that it will make a difference! Love those Babies!! Michele

Monday, July 21, 2008

It's the Simple Things

Our generation of families have been taught that the things that really matter are the big larger than life trips, presents and experiences. Ask your children individually...."What is your favorite thing to do with mommy?" You might be really surprised at the answer. It usually has very little to do with BIG plans and more to do with TIME. Something that we do not seem to have to give our children! Precious memories are made by spending time with your children, often doing the most trivial things. I recently asked my 8 year old son this question and he said one of his favorite things to do with me is to go to IHOP...just the two of us...for pancakes. He said he likes for just the two of us to talk.
Let me give you an idea. Go by your local appliance store and ask for a couple of large boxes. When you get home...set them up...color, paint and draw on them. Cut out a door and fill the inside with pillows and blankets. Make a snack and sit in there with them for a bit and just talk. I promise you will be your child's hero and you will be able to get lots done the rest of the afternoon because those free boxes are more entertaining than an expensive day a Chuck E. Cheese!
Love Those Babies!!! Michele

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Don't Forget Your House! Part 4

...Deuteronomy 6:9 "You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates" There is so much history about the children of Israel and the meaning behind doorposts and gates but for today I want to talk literally not symbolically. These verses are talking about the place that you call home. Is your home a place where others walk in and know that there is a difference from the rest of the world. Is your home a sanctuary from the ugliness of the world or is it just like the world?

When I was growing up, along with my two sisters, my home was such a haven. My parents always welcomed our friends. My mom was always cooking and she always had enough for whoever might drop by and my dad was always lively and funny. We always prayed together and had many conversations about the Lord. I always knew that I wanted to have that kind of home. What an example for me and my sisters. Now I have the awesome privilege of making that kind of home for my children, husband, family, and guests. I say "make" because it does not just happen. You must be very intentional if you want a home where your children learn to love the Lord. I am always learning and growing and asking the Lord to show me new ways to teach and inspire my children to love Him more.

I don't think there is any doubt of the importance of teaching our children to love the Lord, these verses remind us that it is THE most important thing we will ever teach them and we should be conscious of it all day and in every way!

Love those babies! Michele

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Right Between the Eyes Part 3

Have I mentioned that I LOVE this passage?? Look at verse 8, (Deuteronomy 6:8) "Bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. Frontlets were literal strips of papyrus or leather with scripture written on them and they were attached to the forehead or wrists (this is actually really interesting to look into deeper). So the Lord tells us how important it is to teach our children to love Him...all day long...everywhere we go and now He speaks of the visual. When I started thinking of the places that he tells us to bind this...our face and our hands, I was convicted. I am normally calm and collect...I am not a screamer, I do not struggle with anger but if looks could kill I might win the prize. I 'm not talking about your normal "mama's serious so don't push me" look......I am talking serious fiery darts! Sooooo does my countenance show the love of Jesus?? What about yours?

Then we look at the hands. Are we showing love? Just saying that we love the Lord is not good enough. If others can't see through our actions and maybe more importantly our reactions that we love the Lord then we only have lip service. Now apply all of this to teaching diligently to our children how to love the Lord. They are watching everything that you do! James Dobson said it best.."When they are young they will follow our advice but when they are older they will follow our example"

Love those babies, (and show it!) Michele

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Talking all day long. Part 2

We are still looking at Deuteronomy 6:4-9. Notice verse 7, when should you teach this to your children? ALL DAY LONG! The Lord has to be very specific with me! He makes it very clear here as to when to teach our children. Start in the morning, help your children to view each new day as a gift and an opportunity for them to love the Lord and to show that love to others. Praise them when they do even little things that are pleasing to the Lord.

We live in a culture that is extremely self centered and self indulgent. A wise mother will teach her children daily that the world is not all about "me." This should start at a really early age and aught to be reinforced until they leave your house. Teach your children to pray first thing in the morning when you have breakfast and thank the Lord for your food and ask Him to bless your day. This verse reminds us that the Lord wants to be like a beautiful golden thread that winds through your entire day.

I love spending time with my children and two of my favorite times are dinner time and bed time. One of my favorite questions to ask my kids is, "What was the best part of your day and what was the worst part of your day?" You would be surprised at the insight this can bring! Sometimes it is funny, sometimes it is very convicting! It is also a great time to help your kids learn to be grateful for Gods many blessings. Remember to first examine can't properly teach your kids to love the Lord with all their heart if that isn't the desire of your heart as well. Love those babies!!! Michele

The Greatest Commandment Part 1

I am passionate about the home. There are so many women who feel inadequate and less than important in their role as mother. This is a lie that the enemy loves to feed women! Your job is HUGE and your impact is huge as well! One of my favorite passages in the whole Bible is the 6th chapter in Deuteronomy and specifically verses 4-9. I wish that you would take a minute to read it. Notice the command....."You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might"...... now notice who you are commanded to teach this to...YOUR CHILDREN! Is there anything more important than teaching them this? We tend to be so proud of them when they can recite their ABC's from the cradle or when they name all the Presidents forward and backward in three languages. I know...I have 5 children that have preformed various feats for proud grandparents. All of those things are great but do we show the same enthusiasm when they want to give their last quarter to a missionary, or when they want to pray for a friend who needs Jesus??

Notice also that the Bible says to teach them "diligently" to your children, some translations say, "repeat them again and again." The Hebrew word here is to whet, and to whet means to sharpen. When a knife is dull you whet it against a stone in order to sharpen it. A dull knife does not make a very big impact. WOW... In teaching my children to love Jesus with ALL their hearts I am sharpening them. I am preparing them to be all that Jesus wants them to be. Now I call that an important job! Love those babies!!! Michele

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