Archive for the 'Interests' Category

16
Jun
09

This Guy Is a Prophet.

In 1971, Urie Bronfenbrenner’s work, Two Worlds of Childhood, was published.  I know nothing about it beyond this one quote in The Well-Trained Mind, by Susan Wise Bauer.  In light of the incidents of kids shooting kids in schools, I think this man’s work perhaps deserves a closer look.  Here’s what he says, with SWB’s words in regular print, his in bold.

Thirty years ago, Cornell Professor of Child Development Urie Bronfenbrenner warned that the “socially-isolated, age-graded peer group” created a damaging dependency in which middle-school students relied on their classmates for approval, direction, and affection. He warned that if parents, other delights, and older children continued to be absent from the daily life of younger children, we could expect “alienation, indifference, antagonism, and violence on the part of the younger generation.”

Interesting.

The Well-Trained Mind has a nice chapter on the question, “But what about socialization?”  If you even mention, in a crowd of people who are not familiar with it, the idea of teaching kids at home, this will come up.  If you’re like me, at first you’ll launch into a list of ways you personally make sure your child has plenty of chances to interact with peers: church, sports, home school group events.  In other words, I bought into the idea that by not putting my child in school, I was depriving him of something necessary to his complete development.  After reading this chapter a few times (at least it took me a few times for it to soak in), you’ll understand that this is simply not true.  Your family is arguably the best, at the very least an appropriate, social setting for your children, and better prepares them for life in “the real world” than a classroom can.

By the way, in case you’re curious, William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies came out in 1954.

31
Mar
09

Hello World!

I’m just going to start posting again, just as if I have not beed away from this blog for months.  Hope that’s cool with you.  To set your mind at ease, no major crisis has occurred to take me away from blogging.  It’s just Facebook.

I sent two envelopes for Red Envelope Day, an organized peaceful protest against the practice of abortion in the United States.  I wonder if it will get any press?

30
Oct
08

If I Would Just Get a Job…

There are so many things wrong with this article.  I don’t even know where to start.  The article, by Madeline Chambers from Reuters, is titled, “Working women hold key to world prosperity.”  She quotes Alison Maitland as saying, “There is a huge gap between women’s talents and skills and the use of that potential.”

I am taking this to mean that at least some of her “talents and skills” (a “huge” amount?) is being wasted when the woman stays out of the workforce to raise her kids.

Next sentence: “It requires a concerted effort by governments and the private sector in collaboration.”

If governments, private companies, and individuals all try hard, skillful and talented women can be convinced and enabled to leave the child-raising (which takes much less important talent and much fewer skills) to other people.  The article does not go on to say who these people are.

Chambers cites France and Nordic countries as examples of countries that have successfully drawn women away from child-rearing and into the workforce.  These women are still having babies, but they are leaving them in “good and affordable” childcare.  The families have tax incentives to have two income earners.

These countries also have some of the lowest marriage rates and higher than average divorce rates, according to the OECD.

The world economy will just have to do without my skills and talents.  I don’t intend to waste my life.

07
Mar
08

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

This made me cry. It’s a video highlighting a network of volunteers who offer to help families who have learned that their newborns will likely not survive birth. They’re photographers (including one of my favorite children’s photographers, Sugar Photography) who give their time and skills to give enduring tangibility to the memories these families are making with their beautiful children. The pictures provide evidence that these children existed and had lives that meant something. God, in His sovereign grace, makes no mistakes and is always good.

This also made me cry. The Born Alive Infants Protection Act. When President Bush signed it in August 2002, he said,

Today I sign the Born Alive Infants Protection Act. This important legislation ensures that every infant born alive — including an infant who survives an abortion procedure — is considered a person under federal law. This reform was passed with the overwhelming support of both political parties, and it is about to become the law of the land.

With this in effect, doctors are required to give medical care to a child who is “accidentally” born alive after a late-term abortion attempt. Why on earth does this even have to be discussed? In fact, although it was passed “with overwhelming support of both political parties,” Barack Obama did not support it. Logical, actually, if you set your philosophy on the flawed premise that we are all there is. So maybe I shouldn’t be surprised.

For another look at this issue, go here. This has Mr. Obama’s own words about why he did not support this legislation.

The value of life, no matter how short or how long, is a subject that is close to my heart. It’s one of the few things that can set me off (the others being depression and education). Can you tell?

06
Mar
08

My Kingdom For A Sledge!

You know, I am finding it difficult to retain my usual sunny and non-critical (ahem) personality when I can’t help but notice that our town’s outdoor ice skating area is better maintained than the residential street in front of my house. In fact, the ice is most likely thicker here on The Terrace than it is under the skates of those merry gliders across from the library. Granted, the sand truck just went by, thus making skating on the street fairly difficult, but I would be willing to wager my piggy bank that our street has seen the plow less often than the rink has.

But I am not bitter. Just glad we live relatively close to the main road.

p.s. The kids are watching PBS’ Curious George, and I just overheard this post-appropriate line: “This is bad, but I can think of 56 ways it could be worse.”

11
Dec
07

All I Want for Christmas

I’ve been asked to put up a list of stuff I want for Christmas. There’s a lot of stuff I want, so that seems easy, right? The problem is that I have developed this aversion to the Wish List. (As my parents can tell you, this is certainly not an issue I’ve had all my life.) But, putting that aversion aside, here’s the Christmas Wish List 2007 for our family.

Brian: See his post on the subject here.

Eva: colored cardstock, an oven thermometer, a heavy cornbread/scone pan, a small digital food scale, HP 98/95 ink cartridges for the printer, stationery

Gannon: Legos, a kid’s calculator, Calvin and Hobbes book, Garfield book, art/craft supplies

Acadia: Legos, kid-sized mommy’s helper kind of things, little girl’s nail polish/makeup, baby doll supplies, art/craft supplies

Merry Christmas!

21
Aug
07

What Parenting Does To You

For a brief and perfectly accurate description of what happens to a woman after she becomes a mother (at least after she becomes a mother through giving birth…I can’t speak for the moms whose first baby comes into their family through adoption but I imagine it is much the same, perhaps without the disappearance of her abdominal muscles), go see Kristen’s blog, Walking Circumspectly.

I’ve been posting a lot of linkage these days. Am I lazy? No, just sharing and caring for my pals. If I enjoyed it, you might too. Right? I’m certainly not lazy. But I do have a lot on my mental plate these days (not that I have a plate in my head, setting off the alarm at airports and stuff, I just mean I have a lot to think about). And maybe it’s taking up most of my creativity.

That, and I just started reading The Deathly Hallows. Which kept me up a little bit last night. (I’m just up to the part where….never mind. You might not have read it, and in that case I’m not allowed to talk to you about it.)

I’m gearing up for school to start in a couple of weeks. Gannon will be in 1st(ish) grade and I am going to do some preschooly things with Acadia. When I figure it all out I will post what we’re using for materials/curriculum.

Then there are Bible studies to prepare for, children’s church, preschool worship, house issues, kid issues, and car issues. You know, just the usual stuff. Plus the added energy of figuring out how I can get to see The Simpsons Movie. Which is very important, people.




RUNNING HOME


My blog. Herein read entries related to who and what is important to me. Feel free to leave comments. I feel free to delete them if I don't like them. So there. By reading about my life, readers should expect to begin to see their own lives as increasingly more organized and sophisticated, their homes cleaner and neater.

Why This Blog?

Well, mostly this is for my family to see pictures and read anecdotes about the kids. It's also a venue for telling the story of my struggles and victories in my life as a Christian, a wife, a mother, and a teacher. Occasionally I toss in some weird or touching item that I've found.

What’s Christianity All About?

The Gospel is the news that Jesus Christ, the Righteous One, died for our sins and rose again, eternally triumphant over all his enemies, so that there is now no condemnation for those who believe, but only everlasting joy. [as said by John Piper]

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