Holiday Stress – and What We Do About It! – MBFLP 271

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” the song says … and one of the busiest and most stressful, too! What can we do to maintain the spirit of celebration while the season’s demands pile on top of our already-full lives? What practical steps can we take to lighten the load and get the really important things done? As the homeschooling parents of eight kids, starting and running a business from home at the same time, trust us – we’ve been there. Join us in this special edition where we talk about the realities of homeschooling, home business, and the holidays!

Holidays are Opportunities

The Bible has some holidays which were commandments, at least to the Israelites. God gave the ceremonies of Passover and told the people that when they came to the promised land, “you shall observe this thing as an ordinance for you and your sons forever.” (Exodus 12:24) Why was that? “It shall be as a sign to you … and as a memorial …” (Exodus 13:9). There are questions and answers expected so the elders pass on their faith to the younger generations –

Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations. Ask your father, and he will show you; your elders, and they will tell you …” (Deuteronomy 32:7)

Even though we don’t have a Biblical commandment to celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas, they are opportunities to connect our families — and ourselves — with the goodness of God in His provision for life now and life hereafter!

[For good measure, consider when the exiles returned to rebuild Jerusalem and celebrated the recovery of the Law. After a marathon reading of the Word of God, the governor Nehemiah told the people, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10)]

The challenge to us is to be sure to focus on the message, and not be overwhelmed by the daily responsibilities and the seasonal additions!

(continued …)

Think About Priorities

Have you seen the illustration of loading rocks and gravel into a big container? The only way to maximize what fits is to load the biggest things first, then smaller ones to fill in the gaps. Your daily (weekly, monthly) plan is the same way – you need to consider the most important, top-priority matters first, and fit them into your schedule before the secondary things.

And in a season when you need to be sure your children and your family hear the good news of the Messiah’s birth and really think about God’s mercies and provision over the past year … maybe it’s not as critical to do every single worksheet in the curriculum every day. Sometimes you can bring holiday-related subjects into the schoolwork (baking and cooking is a great way to work on weights and measures and fractions; Charles Dickens and George MacDonald can provide reading materials; personalized greeting cards are good handwriting practice!)

Listen in for more thoughts and ideas that can make your holiday season less anxious and more joyful this year!

Helping Kids Deal with Stress – MBFLP 270

We adults may feel like we’re under stress all the time, but we can’t overlook the fact that our kids are suffering, too! Last episode we talked about how we respond when we’re confronted with uncertainty and unpleasant news. How can we help our kids deal with the disruptions of life on their level?

Lest We Forget

Parents have had to make a lot of adjustments the past two years. Our kids are dealing with some of the same issues, from their own perspective. That may be school closures or other changes in their educational routines. It may be uncertainty over adult issues, like lost of employment, quarantines, or restrictions on travel or social gatherings. Even if everything comes from the same root cause, like the pandemic, its impact will be felt differently from one family to the next — and from one family member to the next.

Over the years, we’ve had a share of uncertainty and unhappy events — medical emergencies, job changes, relocations, disrupted plans. With a large family, and one that travels with us most of the time, we had to realize that we couldn’t hide much from the kids. It seemed better to us to share our concerns, in child-sized portions, so they could understand why things were “wrong” right then.

Our kids are not clones

We need to remember that our kids are individuals – maybe with a lot of commonalities, but still with their own approach to the world around them. A quiet child may be full of turmoil inside, while the noisy one may actually be calmer after venting all his drama. Consider that, as you answer and counsel the outspoken child, other siblings may be listening and learning without asking. Just don’t overlook the ones who aren’t “in your face”!

Younger kids need reassurance. Are Mom and Dad going to be here for me? Do they have a plan to deal with things? Are they safely in charge still?

Teenagers can often step into some adult roles. We found that in moments of crisis, our teens were able to pick up some of their parents’ concerns — running errands, doing more household tasks, taking more responsibility for themselves and their younger brothers and sisters.

Watch out for the middle kids, though. Often they are old enough to understand some of the needs, but too young to do much to help. It can be very frustrating for them! Look for tasks they can do, even if they’re not major burdens to the adults. Your middle school kids are likely to be much more capable than you think (check out our book No Longer Little for more ideas and encouragement!).

(continued)

But what about the conclusion?

What happens when the pressure’s relieved? Count on it – family members which have “held it together” for the team while the crisis is underway, will often come unglued when the emergency is over. It’s best to plan on some time to re-adjust to “normal” when you’ve been through a time of stress. Give yourself and everyone around you an extra measure of grace – a heaping serving of it, in fact. If you expect there to be a time of transition, you can move into it with some care – rather than experiencing “explosive decompression” that causes problems for everyone!

Passages We Referenced

Romans 8:28And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Matthew 10:29-31 (Jesus)“Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.”

Galatians 6:2Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

James 1:2-4My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

Resources You Might Appreciate

No Longer Little: Parenting Tweens with Grace and Hope by Hal and Melanie Young

Eleanor Porter’s Pollyanna and Pollyanna Grows Up – audiobooks narrated by Melanie Young

 

 


 

A Special Thank You to Our Network Sponsor:  Courageous Movie

 

From the Kendrick Brothers, creators of the No. 1 box-office movie WAR ROOM and OVERCOMER, comes the remastered re-release of COURAGEOUS Legacy, in theaters September 24. Celebrating 10 years of impact on families and fathers, this updated version of the film includes new scenes and an enhanced look and sound.

Filled with action-packed drama, COURAGEOUS Legacy will once again have viewers laughing, crying, and cheering as they are challenged and inspired by everyday heroes who long to be the kinds of dads that make a lifelong impact on their children. Protecting the streets is second nature to these men. Raising their children in a God-honoring way? That’s courageous.

Check out the trailer here!


Dealing with Stressful News – MBFLP 269

Some things are unquestionable, life-changing moments – an unexpected death in the family, a natural disaster, a major accident. But what about things which just show up and disrupt everything? The smaller emergencies which aren’t big enough to awaken heroism, but are big enough to bring out all our doubts, fears, frustrations, and temper? The “breaking news” which could be really unpleasant, but you can’t be sure?

We’ve dealt with this – frequently, and even recently! So this episode, we’re talking about some practical ways to meet stressful news with calmness and faith … even if it takes a few minutes to make the adjustment!

Passages We Referenced

Matthew 10:29-31 (Jesus): “Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.”

Philippians 4:6Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God

Romans 8:28And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 

Books We Mentioned

Judith Viorst, The Tenth Good Thing About Barney. This is a great children’s book about remembering the good things in the middle of sad times. It’s easy to get overwhelmed in the stress of the moment, and forget that happiness is real just like sorrow – and life will have some of both.

Eleanor H. Porter, Pollyanna – check out the audiobook version narrated by Melanie! The book is much better than the Disney version (more clearly Biblical, for one thing), and funny as well as thought-provoking. Even our teenaged sons enjoyed it, though the main character is a young girl at the time. Important lessons about always finding a reason to rejoice, even in difficulty.

NEXT TIME

Helping your kids through stressful times …

UPDATE –

We mentioned that our van broke down on a speaking trip in July, and at the time of recording, had been in the shop for several weeks waiting on an engine replacement. We’re glad to say that the van is now repaired and back home – thank you for your prayers and support!

 

 


 

A Special Thank You to Our Network Sponsor:  Courageous Movie

 

From the Kendrick Brothers, creators of the No. 1 box-office movie WAR ROOM and OVERCOMER, comes the remastered re-release of COURAGEOUS Legacy, in theaters September 24. Celebrating 10 years of impact on families and fathers, this updated version of the film includes new scenes and an enhanced look and sound.

Filled with action-packed drama, COURAGEOUS Legacy will once again have viewers laughing, crying, and cheering as they are challenged and inspired by everyday heroes who long to be the kinds of dads that make a lifelong impact on their children. Protecting the streets is second nature to these men. Raising their children in a God-honoring way? That’s courageous.

Check out the trailer here!


I’m So Overwhelmed

 

I'm So OverwhelmedI’m So Overwhelmed– Episode 99

Managing Your Homeschool with Less Stress

Managing Your Homeschool with Less Stress

Managing Your Homeschool with Less Stress – Episode 91

Join FPEA Chairman Suzanne Nunn and veteran homeschooler, Hannah Kartagener, as they look at ways to travel your homeschool journey with less stress.

Topics Discussed on the Show

  • Organizing
  • Feeding People
  • Schooling
  • Staying Ahead of the Details
  • Finding Your Quiet Space
  • Finding Your Unique Way
  • -FPEA Convention

Meet HannahHannah Kartagener

Hannah runs an international online community called Creative Homeschool Journal. Her community offers creative, fun, and educational ideas. She is a consultant, writer, speaker, and mentor to others. Teaching others about nature study, books, art, and organizing are some of her favorite things. Her home library is an ever-expanding work in progress, and she hopes it will bless her family for generations to come. She also serves the Florida Parent Educators Association (FPEA) as a Regional Representative.

Why Every Homeschool Mom Needs a Homeschool BFF

homeschool mom needs a homeschool mom bff

Why Every Homeschool Mom Needs a Homeschool BFF

Every homeschool mom goes through a similar experience. We start with the conviction that we should homeschool our children. Moms get excited with shopping for and choosing curriculum. We spend our summer planning.

Then we begin. And it’s not long before we start to feel like we’re going at this thing alone.

We Question Ourselves

Once the loneliness sets in we start to question our decision to homeschool.

One days when our children’s behavior or lack of interest in their studies sets in, we want to give in and hand it over to someone else. Even if we don’t admit that out loud.

It doesn’t mean we’ve lost faith in our conviction, it just means we really are meant to be in community with one another. We need a friend who gets it.

Reaching out to Friends and Finding a Homeschool BFF

This is where having a homeschool BFF can really make your homeschool experience so much better. She understands your struggles. She can hold you up with you’re feeling down. It’s often that homeschool mom BFF who reminds you of why you’re doing this in the first place. And if she’s a true friend she points you back to Jesus, so you don’t lose your way.

Friends for Life

And these friends aren’t just friends for a season. You never really outgrow them. In this podcast I share a little about Mom School and how that experience introduced me to a circle of friends who are still my friends to this day. Good friends.

The Homeschool Sisterhood

That’s why I’m kinda (okay, a lot) excited about the Homeschool Sisterhood  (referral link) with Ana Willis. I wish I’d had this opportunity when I was a brand new homeschooling mom. The opportunity to learn from a veteran homeschool mom who can share how to stay focused would’ve been such a blessing.

Wherever you’re at in your homeschooling journey, check out The Homeschool Sisterhood (referral link) and get yourself plugged in.

PS. Check out …

My podcast interview with Ana Willis, topic: How to Stop the Hustle and Find Your Purpose

Join the Mommy Jammies Podcast Community on Facebook.

 


Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor -Overcomer Movie

Life changes overnight for coach John Harrison when his high school basketball team’s state championship dreams are crushed under the weight of unexpected news. When the largest manufacturing plant in town suddenly shuts down and hundreds of families begin moving away, John must come to grips with the challenges facing his family and his team. Urged by the school’s principal to fill-in and coach a sport he doesn’t know or like, John is frustrated and questioning his worth… until he crosses paths with a student struggling with her own journey.
Filled with a powerful mix of faith, a twist of humor, and a ton of heart, the Kendrick Brothers return to theaters with OVERCOMER, their newest feature following FACING THE GIANTS, FIREPROOF, COURAGEOUS, and the #1 box-office hit, WAR ROOM. The inspiring family film stars Alex Kendrick, Priscilla Shirer, Shari Rigby, Cameron Arnett, and introduces Aryn Wright-Thompson.

Opening nationwide on August 23, OVERCOMER dares to leave you filled with hope, inspired to dream, and asks the question: what do you allow to define you?

Click here to learn more!


Special Edition of HIRL: Mid-Year Slump

Free homeschool podcast about surviving the Mid-Year SlumpThis week on Special Edition – Homeschooling IRL – Enjoy this episode replay sponsored by Christian Standard BibleMid-January. Harumph. Are you feeling the mid-year slump in your homeschool, too? 

In this episode of Homeschooling in Real Life, Fletch and Kendra talk about how the mid-year slump affects their homeschooling and give several practical ways in which you can beat the mid-year slump, too.


SHOW NOTES:

Recommended Resources:
Lost and Found, by Kendra Fletcher
Key Life Ministries with Steve Brown
Interview with Key Life

Follow Fletch/Kendra:
Fletch Twitter
Kendra Twitter

Follow the Studio Dogs:
Betty the Surf Dog – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website
Rasta The Chocolate Lab – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website

Previous Episodes Mentioned:
The Worst Is Yet To Come, Keb’ Mo – Buy it here on iTunes

Music clips used on this episode:
None


Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor – Christian Standard Bible

The Christian Standard Bible captures the Bible’s original meaning without compromising clarity. An optimal blend of accuracy and readability, this translation helps readers make a deeper connection with God’s Word and inspires lifelong discipleship. The CSB is for everyone—for readers young and old, new and seasoned. It’s a Bible pastors can preach from and a Bible you can share with your neighbor hearing God’s Word for the very first time.

Find out more here!


Destressing the Holidays

Destress HolidaysDestressing the Holidays

Podcast #37

Join  Florida Parent Educators Association’s (FPEA) Chairwoman, Suzanne Nunn for a discussion on making the holiday season more manageable and fun. She offers tips and suggestions on making the most of your holiday season, Thanksgiving-Christmas.

Please join us as we travel along this journey on our podcast adventure. Let’s get connected! Learn more about the Florida Parent Educator’s Association and homeschooling in the beautiful state of Florida.

Please visit www.fpea.com to learn more about who we are!

 


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor!


We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor Sony and their new movie, The Star, the Story of the First Christmas – Coming in Theaters November 17th!

Visit TheStarMovie.com to learn more.


Mid-Year Slump – HIRL Episode 135

Free homeschool podcast about surviving the Mid-Year SlumpMid-January. Harumph. Are you feeling the mid-year slump in your homeschool, too? 

In this episode of Homeschooling in Real Life, Fletch and Kendra talk about how the mid-year slump affects their homeschooling and give several practical ways in which you can beat the mid-year slump, too.


SHOW NOTES:

Recommended Resources:
Lost and Found, by Kendra Fletcher
Key Life Ministries with Steve Brown
Interview with Key Life

Follow Fletch/Kendra:
Fletch Twitter
Kendra Twitter

Follow the Studio Dogs:
Betty the Surf Dog – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website
Rasta The Chocolate Lab – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website

Previous Episodes Mentioned:
The Worst Is Yet To Come, Keb’ Mo – Buy it here on iTunes

Music clips used on this episode:
None


SUBSCRIBE AND LEAVE AN iTUNES REVIEW:

Allow the magic of the internet to deliver Homeschooling In Real Life to your tablet or smart phone. Let us show you how easy it is:

  1. Follow this link to our iTunes page.
  2. IMPORTANT STEP: Under our big red HomeschoolingIRL logo, just click on View in iTunes
  3. The iTunes program will automatically launch and take you to our podcast page.
  4. FIRST – Click SUBSCRIBE. Voila! All or our podcasts will come directly to your computer and smart phone.
  5. NEXT – Click RATINGS AND REVIEW. Remember the best reviews are 5-stars (hint hint!).
  6. Thanks for being one of our listeners! HIRLers rock!

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO LISTEN TO HomeschoolingIRL?

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  2. You can listen on your iPod, Smartphone or tablet. Open the PODCAST app on your device, search podcasts for “HomeschoolingIRL” and click subscribe. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
  3. Subscribe to the HomeschoolingIRL website and you will be notified when every new episode is released. Follow this link and begin your FREE SUBSCRIPTION.

ADVERTISERS/SPONSORS:

Please visit our coffee sponsor: Caroline’s Coffee for 10% off any order. Use code HIRL


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LISTEN HERE

Are you ready to listen to Fletch and Kendra get real about homeschooling? Press the PLAY button below.


Join Fletch (from theMangoTimes) and Kendra (from KendraFletcher.com) for the HomeschoolingIRL podcast every week as they interview guests and talk through some of the goofiness they have experienced in nearly two decades.

Angry and Stressed-out Parenting

Overcoming Angry & Stressed Out Parenting

Overcoming Angry & Stressed Out Parenting

 

Subscribe to Family Renewal HERE.

Join Israel Wayne every month as he discusses life, theology, Christian Apologetics, education, family and cultural issues from a Biblical worldview. Israel is an author and conference speaker who often speaks at homeschooling conferences, and churches, as well as marriage and parenting seminars.

Finally, the information he teaches around the nation will be available to listeners like you. Each broadcast will be about a half hour and will feature interviews and thoughtful commentary from Israel and his guests.

 

Israel and Brook Wayne tackle an area that has been the menace of parents for way too long.  Frustration, irritation, and anger often find a way into our homes, trying to turn the kindest of parents into a meanie. What happened? Where did this anger come from? What can be done to get rid of it? Come along and join the discussion.

You can order our new book here: Pitchin’ A Fit! Overcoming Angry & Stressed-Out Parenting.


Homeschool Answers Book Bundle

The decision to homeschool is difficult. There is so much to learn, and there are often radical changes that take place in your family. Unfortunately, not everyone will be supportive.

Well-meaning friends and relatives may believe you are going to “ruin your child.” How can you make sure that you have laid a good foundation for your child’s future? How can you respectfully defend your choice to those who disagree with you?

Many studies indicate that Christian youth are leaving the Church, and anti-Christian education has been linked as a major factor in this equation. The Bible is full of instructions on how God desires His children to be educated. IF GOD has a definite opinion about the issue of education, wouldn’t you desire to find out what it is and how best to implement HIS WISDOM?