Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Random Pictures of My Big Boy

Yes, he can climb up on any piece of furniture now, and his favorite activity is definitely climbing.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

How I Saved Us Money at CVS this week

Last week we were so busy that I did not get to CVS till Saturday and by then they were all sold out of the diapers and vitamins I wanted to purchase.

This week I went and got Charlie deodorant by using this deal that moneysaving mom had: Buy 1 Mennen Speed Stick 24/7 For Men (2.7-3oz) at $3.99, Get $3.99 ECBs (Limit 1)
Use $1/1 printable here or here or from 3/30 SmartSource insert
Free plus overage after coupon and ECBs

So I made us $3.99 and I did not even spend that much money since I used this coupon for .75 off.

I also might be getting the clinical strength deodorant for me and earning $2 but I would have to spend 9.99 for it so I do not know if it is worth it this week with our budget.

Go here to moneysaving mom to see all the CVS deals for this week: http://www.moneysavingmom.com/2008/04/cvs-deals-for-week-of-april-20-26-2008.html

I am still cutting coupons from Sunday's paper. I keep all the coupons in the guest room and put a paper clip on them and date of the paper that the coupons where in. Additionally, I go ahead and cut out coupons that I know 100 percent I will use, and put them in a separate plastic bag. I also look at my coupons weekly, and really good coupons, I write them down in a notebook when they are going to expire so I do not miss out on the coupon when I go to Kroger and they double your coupons up to .50 cents. I did join the grocery game, and I have saved so much money. I just have subscribed to it for Kroger but you can do the trial offer for just $1. Go here to get more information: http://www.thegrocerygame.com/index.cfm?goto=help&faq_id=721 They match up all the best deals for you and tell you what date from the Sunday's paper that the coupon was in (in your area of the country). I have saved at least $50 so far by looking weekly at the coupons they have matched up for me for the week before I go to Kroger and buy our groceries.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

To Spank or Not to Spank

Well, after many interesting comments I had on spanking, I just really feel it necessary to write one more post on spanking and guidelines when spanking a child. I know using the word “spanking” offends many readers that I have that I did not know about, but just read this with an open heart.

Here are two areas of foolishness that Plowman recommends using the rod for

  1. Direct Disobedience This is when you have given your child clear instructions and made sure he understand those instructions, but he chooses to disobey. “Children obey your parents in everything for this pleases the Lord.” (Col. 3:20)
  2. Defiant Attitude This is when the child expresses rebellion in his actions, words, tones of voice, or facial expressions.

For me: At Jackson’s age, spanking is determined if what Jackson is doing can harm himself or others. If he is about to pull a big heavy object off a table, I get near him and tell him if he pulls on it again, he will get a spanking.

Guidelines for Spanking a Child:

I understand why this issue is so emotional. We have all seen the child get hit (not spanked – I’m talking about hitting not spanking and there is a difference) in public by a parent and the parent is usually very angry. My heart breaks for these children as well. I do not think their parents have really thought through using the rod for correction, not humiliation or harm.

  1. Discuss what the child has done wrong and why it is your responsibility to spank him. Make sure he knows that you spank him because you love him too much to allow the sin to take root in his heart and grow. It is important for the child to verbally confess what he has done and ask for forgiveness.
  2. Guide the child in thinking through what he should have done. This goes with instructing a child and training them to be the man God has called him to be.
  3. Use proper instruments as your spanker. Do not use something that will bruise your child!
  4. Let the child know how many spankings they will be getting This demonstrates the parent’s self-control.
  5. Spank as promptly after the offense as possible With Jackson if we do not do it very soon after the incident, then we do not do it at all. He has to be able to understand what he did was wrong and 10 minutes later he has completely forgotten what he did.
  6. Administer the spanking in private! I think this is the most important guideline. We are not called to humiliate our children or to “show off” to other parents that they better not mess with us. Our goal is not to embarrass or humiliate your child but to bring him to repentance. A repentant heart will not result from a child whose primary focus is on being embarrassed in front of friends or siblings (or the audience in the check-out line)
  7. Administer the rod to the child’s bottom. The bottom is a sensitive area yet it cushioned in such a way that proper spanking will not do physical damage.
  8. Take time for reconciliation
  9. Require the child to make restitution



  1. Childish Behavior. Childishness becomes foolishness when the child has been given clear instructions and then disobeys
  2. Inability to perform. We should not even have to list this one but we are all sinners
  3. Accidents
  4. Before Having All of the Facts
  5. WHILE YOU ARE ANGRY A parent who spanks a child in anger is sinning against God and sinning against their child. If you are angry, take time to pray through your anger and allow God to make your motives pure before you spank. Disciplining in anger can cause the child to resent rather than repent. * I would say if you are angry and have real young children, just do not spank at that time. It is more important for you not to be angry and abusive than for a spanking to occur. I cannot count the number of times I have seen an angry parent spank their child. In doing this they are sinning and need to repent and ask God for forgiveness and ask their child for forgiveness. The Bible clearly states that if we do not use the rod we “hate our own children,” and we are not saving his soul from death. If you are not a Christian, I understand why you would not want to use the rod. It is a lot easier to try time outs or something else. It is very hard to biblically use the rod and many Christians use the rod because they are angry and they are in turn sinning!

Casting Crowns- East To West

I am loving this "new" song from Casting Crowns....it is a great one to download on itunes. Perfectionist like me have a hard time really accepting God's complete forgiveness sometimes and this song is a great reminder of God's promises to us. God forgives and forgets only because of the blood of Jesus. If you think about it you have not really forgiven someone unless you have forgotten what they have done. Enjoy these beautiful lyrics!

Here I am, Lord, and I'm drowning in your sea of forgetfulness

The chains of yesterday surround me
I yearn for peace and rest
I don't want to end up where You found me
And it echoes in my mind, keeps me awake tonight
I know You've cast my sin as far as the east is from the west
And I stand before You now as though I've never sinned
But today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way


Jesus can You show me just how far the east is from the west

'Cause I can't bear to see the man I've been come rising up in me again
In the arms of Your mercy I find rest
'Cause You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other

I start the day, the war begins, endless reminding of my sin
Time and time again Your truth is drowned out by the storm I'm in
Today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way


I know You've washed me white, turned my darkness into light

I need Your peace to get me through
get me through this night
I can't live by what I feel, but by the truth Your word reveals
I'm not holding on to You, but You're holding on to me
You're holding on to me


Just how far, east is from the west
Just how far, one scarred hand to the other
You know just how far, just how far east is from west
Just how far, from one scarred hand to the other

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

How to Biblically Correct Your Child When He Hits

God’s Word tells us to try to work out disputes among ourselves. When we have a dispute with a fellow Christian or non-Christian (not our children), we are to try to work the dispute out by confronting and asking them to stop the certain behavior. If they refuse to stop then Scripture tells us to get a judge (if they are a Christian the judge showed be a leader or pastor in the church) to decide the case.

Wouldn’t it be great if our children, when they had disputes among each other, asked the other child to stop the behavior in a nice calm way, and the other child actually stopped the said behavior. I think we would be in heaven if that were to happen the majority of the time. But, I do not want to encourage Jackson to tell me every time a child does wrong to him, rather, I want to encourage him to work it out with his friend. He is still a little young to come and tell me what someone else has done to him. Anyway, many times us moms have to act as the judge between fights among our children and their friends. By doing this are we encouraging our children to work out their disputes among themselves or are we hindering that process?

For older children that hit this is what Plowman recommends in her book, Don’t Make me Count to Three”:

"Here are a few examples of heart-probing questions that can be asked:

'What were you feeling when you hit your sister?' Quite often, the emotion is anger.

'What did your sister do to make you mad?' After listening to him we found out that Josh was telling a joke to everyone at the table, and rather than respectfully listening and allowing Josh the fun of telling it, Lindsey kept rudely interrupting and trying to steal the fun from her brother by telling the joke herself. So as a response to her rudeness, Josh got angry and just socked her a good one!

'Did hitting your sister seem to make things better or worse between the two of you?' This question helped him acknowledge that he was still mad, and Lindsey was crying from the pain.

'What was the problem with what Lindsey was doing to you?' Although Josh should not have hit her, we didn’t want to deny the fact that Josh had been sinned against. We had him tell us what Lindsey was doing wrong and why it was wrong. We wanted to teach him how to identify her actions (and his temptation) biblically. There are many verses that could apply to what Lindsey was doing. One would be Proverbs 6:19 which says that one of the seven things that God hates is one 'who stirs up dissension among brothers.' This is definitely what she was doing. The madder her got, the more she delighted in interrupting him.

At this point, we stopped and asked Lindsey, 'Honey were you promoting peace by interrupting your brother’s joke, or were you stirring up trouble?' We focused their attention on what God says about stirring up trouble. We were showing them the situation from God’s point of view.

'Yes, Josh, Lindsey was sinning against you, but in what other ways could have you responded?' Each answer that Josh gave enabled him to better understand his own heart and his own need for Christ’s grace and redemption. And each answered questions gave us the opportunity to us God’s Word in training him in accordance with his struggle. Bottom line, Josh became angry with his sister and returned evil with evil.”

Do you ask heart probing questions with your children? Or do you struggle with instructing your children? I would love to hear from you!

With Jackson when he hits something (sometimes that something is our dog), I tell him that hitting is bad and it does not honor your mommy and displeases God. I say, “If you hit again, you will get a spanking.” Last week, he definitely got a couple of spankings. I use a wooden spoon and I am sure to warn him that he is going to get spanked so he does not live his life in fear thinking I am going to spank him out of the blue. I only give one warning as opposed to three…. Then, I say, we need to love Millie Boo, God wants us to show love and hitting is not showing love. Then we practicing showing love to Millie Boo (our dog).

“He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” Proverbs 13:24. Wow, the Bible says if you spare the rod you hate your own son. That is really strong language. It is hard to spank you children, but if you do not use the rod on your children, ultimately, you are not showing love for them. I tell Jackson that I love him too much not to spank him while I am spanking him and I make sure to never do it when I am upset or mad. Proverbs 23:13-14 states, “Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die. Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death.” We are called to discipline our children with the rod to save our children’s soul from death!

I think the next post will be about spanking and the guidelines that Plowman discusses in her book.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Special Offer on E-Books: Living on a Dime!

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I got all this info from http://www.moneysavingmom.com/

I have not bought any e-books before, but these books look so helpful and this is just too good of a deal to pass up!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Video of Jackson Playing with His New Blocks!

"I Stand Amazed in the Presence"

This song, "I Stand Amazed in the Presence" was done so well at the conference we attended.

Jackson turned 19 months old today and it just seems like yesterday we brought him home from the hospital. He had a fever all day yesterday, and the strep test was negative, so pray that God gives the doctors wisdom if he continues to have a fever. His fever finally broke this morning, but the doctor said he had puss pockets on his throat. We did not have to miss one Sunday in March, so I am so thankful to God that he has been able to stay well for entire 6 weeks. God gets all the glory!

I was still able to go the M.O.M Children Clothing and Equipment Sale with Charlie's sister, Lauren, last night since this sale is only twice a year. Moms who have twins who live in the Lexington area sell their items that they do not need anymore and this sale is held at a large Presbyterian church's gym. We had such a great time! I was able to get so much for Jackson there! I got another car seat, a booster seat, a training potty, building blocks like the ones he plays with at the church, a cute chair for him to sit in, a hat, a Wiggles car, and a phone! I have not bought Jackson any toys since before Christmas since he got so many toys at Christmas. You would not believe how much I spent....it was such a steal. I guess since I have been working so hard to save us money through our grocery and out to eat budget, I just have not been able to justify spending $20 or $30 on 1 toy that he is only going to use for a year or so.

Anyway, back to this amazing song! I see and understand how God loves us so much more now that I am a parent. I see Jackson's sin and I want to instruct him, but it does not change how much I love him. In fact, his shortcomings, him growing in his self-control (not wanting to harm anything when he gets frustrated) makes me love him even more. I see his heart changing, and I see his heart and love for other people, and I get so excited to think what all God is going to do through Jackson. After going to this conference, maybe God will use Jackson's dramatics to preach God's word dramatically and powerfully. God truly is our father and he loves us unconditionally like a father does.

I think you can get some really great versions of this song on itunes.

"I Stand Amazed in the Presence"

I stand amazed in the presence
Of Jesus the Nazarene,
And wonder how He could love me,
A sinner, condemned, unclean.


O how marvelous! O how wonderful!
And my song shall ever be:
O how marvelous! O how wonderful!
Is my Savior’s love for me!

For me it was in the garden
He prayed: “Not My will, but Thine.”
He had no tears for His own griefs,
But sweat drops of blood for mine.


In pity angels beheld Him,
And came from the world of light
To comfort Him in the sorrows
He bore for my soul that night.


He took my sins and my sorrows,
He made them His very own;
He bore the burden to Calvary,
And suffered and died alone.


When with the ransomed in glory
His face I at last shall see,
’Twill be my joy through the ages
To sing of His love for me.


Thursday, April 10, 2008

Empowered Church Conference: Part 1:

I am so thankful and grateful that we were able to attend the Empowered Church Conference again. I did not think it was possible, but it was even better this year. I love this conference and we hope to go every year. God is so good for giving us this opportunity to learn so much through Hickory Grove Baptist Church. Last year Charlie’s Preschool Ministry consisted of five children (at a different church), now it is 105 so we were very interested in their Preschool Ministry. They had completely different breakout sessions than they did last year, and we learned so much through their Preschool ministry which consists of 450 on Sunday morning. They have a resource room coordinator, a baby coordinator, 1’s coordinator, 2’s coordinator, etc. Wow!

I am so grateful for my loving parents for keeping my very sweet loving active toddler!

The theme of this conference was “Return,” Based on Zechariah 1:3, “Return to Me,” says the Lord of hosts, “and I will return to you” (Zechariah 1:3).

The military has a term known “mission creep.” It’s what happens when an operation has been going on for a long time. Soldiers and officers have a tendency to let the mission creep off target. They begin focusing on things that aren’t truly part of what they’re supposed to be doing.

As the church leaders, our mission is clear --- to know Christ and to make Him known. Just as a solider can lose sight of his mission, we have a natural tendency to get away from where God wants us to go in our ministry.

Returning- that’s what this year’s Empowered Church is all about. It is about getting back to where God wants us to be. Over the years, we’ve watched church growth fads come and go, and many of them seem to take a very humanistic approach to reach the desired goal. It’s time to return to the Bible. Time to return to our knees. Time to return to soul-winning. Time to return to holiness. Time to return to real worship. Time to return to Jesus.

Praise God, when we return to Him, God promises He will return to us!

Wow, and this is just the introduction! I cannot wait to post more throughout the week. Go here to see more info: http://www.empowerthechurch.org/

Friday, April 04, 2008

A Mom’s Look at Heart Oriented Discipline (Don’t Make Me Count to Three) Plowman: How to Bibically Instruct a Child to Share

Here is what I learned through this awesome book (I stop posting what I have learned through page forty)

High Calling of Motherhood:

She explains that she has “kissed away boo-boos and washed away the tears. I praised, rebuked, encouraged, hugged, and tested my patience all before noon. God does have important job for me, and it does require much skill. It is my calling, my priority, my struggle, and my goal. I will rise to the occasion and accept the task at hand. I will love, nurture, and train my children the way that God called me to do. Mom, we need to be reminded of the awesome responsibility that God has given us. When we respond to the high calling of motherhood with passion, the rewards are far greater than any we could ever gain outside of that calling. The joys of motherhood are rare and beautiful treasures that can be easily missed if we don’t seize the opportunity to grab them."

A Biblical View of Discipline

It is easy for us to tell our children that they have done wrong and to chastise them for it, but it takes much more preparation, discipline, understanding, and self-control on our parts to actually instruct them according to God’s Word. This approach takes much brain activity that requires us to think through and verbalize that faithful instruction.

The Situation of Sharing

Plowman states that in the situation of sharing she prayed and searched the Scriptures for how she might handle this type of conflict. She states that she can tell us how she handles it at her home, but she is not saying that her way is the only way or the best way. She wants to address the issue of the heart, to simplify her method, and to promote peace. They came up with a rule that it is not only selfish but rude to take or even ask for something that someone else has until that person is obviously through with it.

Here is how the rule operates in their home. Suppose Wesley is playing with a toy. When Alex was younger, if she wanted it, she would just try to take it away. Now that she is older she might politely ask, “Wesley, may I please have that toy now? If she attempts to take the toy, she usually responds with something like this (Jesus asked some hard questions like these as well reaching the hearts of people).

“Honey Wesley has that toy right now. Do you think he is enjoying playing with it?

“Yes ma’am.”

“Do you think it would make him happy or sad if you took it away?”


“Would you delight in making your brother sad?”

“No, ma’am.”

“Do you think that it would be kind or rude for you to try to take away something that he is enjoying?”


“That’s right, Alex, and love is not rude. When Wesley is through with it and puts it down then you may ask for it.”

These questions are great! Now, of course for Jackson I just am asking him one question right now and explaining to him that love is not rude. Of course, I am already dealing with sharing with Jackson. Instead of making the excuse that he is too young to understand or that he does not really understand, I explain to him that he has his toys and when Rivers is done with the toy he may ask for it. We went over to the Crowson’s house yesterday and played (we were going to try to go to the zoo but it was way too cold and rainy). Jackson and Rivers love to hug and love each other and we are teaching them to share. Rivers is about a year older than Jackson. I do not want to teach Jackson that because Rivers had something first then he can't play with it. This will create a desire for Jackson to just try to get toys first and encourage a greedy heart. Instead, I want to explain that we love Rivers, and taking her toy is not loving her, it is being rude. So, Jackson hugged Rivers a good bit as you can see in the pictures, and we applauded Jackson and he was very happy with himself.

Next post I will post about how Plowman recommends Biblically dealing with hitting.

How do you deal with teaching your children to share? I would love to hear (especially how to teach an 18 month old to share)!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Jackson's New Bookcase-Handcrafted By His Mimi!

I am so excited about this bookcase that Charlie's mom, Mimi, made for Jackson during her Spring Break. She had to do a lot of re-painting because it was so damaged by the smoke from the fire. She glued these Carolina blocks from our rehearsal dinner to the top and bottom of the bookcase. We are now officially in the process of changing his room to a "Gamecock" themed room. It is funny, I get way more excited about decorating his room than our room. We are so grateful for Mimi re-doing his bookcase...it look so great (I just had to post pictures of it!)

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Pictures from Last Weekend's Wedding

Here are pictures from my dad's best friend from college, Mikkie Hooker (not to mention my godfather), daughter's wedding. Mikkie is a wonderful man of God and we had a great time! Jackson was busy climbing up and down some stairs so he had a great time as well. Wonderful Aunt Sandi and Uncle Larry came and played with Jackson outside on the church grounds during the ceremony. He had a great time with them. They are such a blessing!