Feature Article Ė Motherís Day and the Hallmark Conspiracy by
Educational Helps Ė by Laurie Detweiler
Motherís Day and the Hallmark Conspiracy
Thereís something that really bugs me about buying cards for made up holidays like Motherís Day. Not that having a Motherís Day every second Sunday in May should be abolished. It just bothers me that Hallmark Cards would invent such a thing for the sheer commercial value of it. At least thatís what the rumor isóeven if there isnít any truth to it.
For the last eight years Laurie and I have spent Motherís Day recuperating from the increasingly exhausting rigors of manning our booth at the Harrisburg Homeschool Fair (CHAP). That doesnít leave much in the tank for an exciting celebration of motherhoodóhonoring our mothers who are both living and planning something with my boys to celebrate the amazing mother with which they have been blessed. Unfortunately, this year is no different. The fair ends Saturday, May 13th at ójust a few hours before the Sunday weíve come to know as Motherís Day. What to do? What to do?
we can really surprise here this year. Serve her breakfast in bed. Worship
together as a family with all
children present. Have the boys make lunch with me cleaning upóthat would
really surprise her. Then maybe take her to the beach or to
Most of us spend precious little time planning a thoughtful expression of appreciation for our spouses, children, extended family members or, for those of you teachers, your students. Admittedly, women are generally much better than men but the fact remains we all need to stop and plan expressions of appreciation. They just donít seem to happen without planning.
As a mother and reader of this piece you are probably of a small minority who has taken both the godly and rigorous education of the students in your care quite seriously. Teaching is exhausting; add keeping up with everything around the house including laundry, cooking and cleaning to the mix and you probably live feeling like we feel Saturday night before Motherís Day. Take a deep breath and realize the tremendous privilege weíve been given to understand the tremendous blessing and benefit accompanying giving our kids such an education.
Work, exhaustion, rest, more work, more exhaustion, rest again; such is our lot in life. And itís not entirely from the fall. Work was ordained before the fateful bites were taken. Work is good and we should learn to embrace the never-ending pattern. Those of you with lots of young children might fell particularly trapped in this cycle. I remember it well. But now as I look at the coming day of our kids being grown and gone the fact of parenting being a lot of work doesnít seem so bad.
Motherís day is an excellent time to celebrate the virtues of those whoís lives are typified by the later part of Proverbs 31. So, donít miss the opportunity and, if you are the wife reading this, do me a favor, give the article to your husband and blame for suggesting it. He might be as thick as I am and need such a blow to be motivated to do the right thing here.
I sit down to write this, my house is eerily silent, and I hate to admit it,
but I am exhausted.† I am the only one
home, which is very unusual, but it does give me a glimpse into the not to
distant future. My oldest, Jameson is away at college, my second son Brandon
and his father are playing in a golf tournament, my third son, Travis is
rehearsing a play and my youngest, Parker, has just left the house with twelve
of his AAU Basketball teammates. The only reason I am at home is to clean up
and get supper ready as Parkerís team is spending the weekend with us. Usually
I would have been running back and forth from one event to the next. At about
this morning I was questioning whether or not Marlin and I had lost our minds
to take this on. All I wanted to do was sleep in a quiet house. Parkerís team
is qualifying for nationals in
No matter what stage of life you are in, mothering, if you are doing your job is exhausting. There are not too many days in the last twenty-one years of my life that I can say I have not fallen into bed exhausted, wondering how I was going to get up and do it all over again. But, we all do get up, because a motherís love is never ending. As I look back now I can say I donít regret one moment of sleepless nights, or one more drive in the car to get to an event, in fact, I am looking forward to being able to help my children with my grandchildren.
and I have been blessed, we both have motherís who in their own way gave
tirelessly of themselves for their children. Itís funny the things you
remember, but I can remember waking up in the middle of the night as a young
child to find my mother at the sewing machine, working away. Later on I would
find out that she was making me a trunk full of doll clothes for Christmas. My
son Travis will be spending the summer at
Well I am sorry if I have bored you with my reminiscing at this time. We can all look back and remember those nights without sleep, trying to figure out how to get through the day, but at the end of it all I can promise you there will never be anything else you do in your life that will bring you more of a gift, then hearing the voice of your grown child say, ďI love you Mom, Thanks!Ē
Attached you will find a Motherís Day card to make for your mother. Or, if you are the mother do what my husband said above, give this epistula to him. Maybe heíll take the hint.
Two Williams Teaser
You may be familiar with the Monroe Family
Chronicles series that track the history of
there a suggested schedule of when each of the additional history reading books
should be read to coordinate with the history cards?† I purchased many of the Ancient
A. There is not one schedule that you can follow, but there is a pretty simple way to deal with it. Before you begin your school year map out your history on a calendar. Generally speaking we spend a week per history event (card). Chose the extra reading books you wish to read and look in the catalog for the number of the card that they match up with. After doing this slot in the books, realizing that it may take more than one week to read a book. Itís okay if they overlap onto the next card. We generally figure a chapter to two chapters a day, when determining how many days to spend on any given book. The main reason we donít have a schedule is there are too many different components to choosing what books to use.
Q. What are your views on a Latin-based curriculum versus the "neo-classical" models? Where would you consider your school/materials to fit into this discussion?
A. The answer assumes that the question can be rephrased ďDo you think Latin should be the core such that an English grammar program in virtually unnecessary?Ē First, we definitely believe that Latin is the paradigm discipline in Grammar School, particularly for mastering the English language. However, we believe those that promote eliminating the study of English grammar in favor of Latin go too far. Students who are educated by our recommendations will have an excellent start toward mastering English by the end of first grade and we donít recommend starting Latin until second grade at the earliest. English grammar helps a child learn Latin, and Latin helps a child learn English grammar. In first grade children are able to start writing sentences and paragraphs. We want them to learn the correct structure for a sentence, before they actually begin to write one, so they donít develop bad habits. Because Latin sentence structure is different, they need to understand English grammar structure before they begin. All this said, Latin makes children understand English grammar in a much better way but is not a replacement for it.
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