Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Grace Is The Only Thing That Is Ever Enough {The First Day Of A New Year @ The One-room Schoolhouse}

{I would LOVE for the Cowboy to build me a one-room schoolhouse just like this!}

This morning we went to Douglas County's very first schoolhouse. It happens to be right down the street from the farm. I love all things old and I love history. The small town that we live in was established in 1860. It was a stopping place during the civil war. A few of the old homesteads used their homes for the town post office, store, and first court house. 

One of the original families still lives up the road from us and the grandma actually came to our house a few months back and shared a ton of history with us about our own little farm. She was so kind and I loved hearing all about our homestead. 

Not long after she had visited us, my dad received a piece of her mail in his mailbox. And when he went to give it to her, he was met by an 80-year woman standing on the front porch with a rifle. {It made me laugh.} Sadly she didn't even remember meeting my dad just a few weeks before. Her daughters had told us that her memory was starting to go.

{This plaque gave us a bit of the history of this old school house.}

{The kids trying to get a peek inside.}

My Dancing Girl is in 4th grade this year. 
Her goals__
It's often a challenge to help this girl come up with her goals. She is by no means perfect but she is by far the quietest one of the bunch. She's a natural nurturer and can't stand to burden anyone or be in trouble. She so rarely needs any sort of correction that it's hard to pinpoint her weaknesses. She must be more like her Papa. The other day Siah and I were having a discussion about sin and he so casually and matter-of-factly said, "Why doesn't Papa ever sin?" {Hehe! That made me laugh!}} Of course he sins, but he, like Hal, just has sin that's not in your face all the time, unlike the rest of the people in this family, the Mama being the most "in your face sinner" of us all. :) So for Hal her goals are often more task oriented rather than heart oriented.
1. Master multiplication.
2. Don't quit when things feel hard.
3. Memorize scripture.
4. Do all subjects with diligence and determination.
5.  Learn to crochet.

{Isn't she beautiful.}


The Charmer's birthday is a little later in the year. He's also way more interested in catching frogs and digging in the dirt than he is in sitting and following any sort of formal instruction.

So although we will be introducing some basic things to the Charmer this year, like letters and numbers and such, we're really just gonna give him another year to do play.

He has his whole life for formal studies. At age five, he's learning leaps and bounds spending time outside, being read to, and learning to work hard with daily jobs and responsibilities. He's a cool kid. He growing in the wisdom and knowledge of the Lord and I love watching the Lord at work in our boy.

Our Siah is in fifth grade this year.
His goals are_
1. To chose to bless and not burden.
2. To honor those around him above himself.
3. To take responsibility for his actions and to make it right on his own initiative when he's wronged someone. 
4. To complete all his memory work for the year including several extended portions of scripture, and the firsts 25 questions of the Westminster Shorter Catechism. 
5. To complete all subjects the right way, all the way, to the absolute best of his ability for the glory and joy of the Lord.

The Spunky Girl is in first grade this year. Last year we ended up repeating kindergarten with her and I believe it's one of the best decisions we've ever made. We spent the year taking tons of time to strengthen her reading skills and get her solid in the most basic math skills. And this year she started school with nothing but joy. As we reviewed each subject she had a confidence that she did not have last year. I love watching her light up when things that seemed impossible just a year ago, now feel like a walk in the park for her. 

The older kids have taken an online history course for the past three years. We've built this class up as a privilege, so much so that the little kids look forward to the year that they don't have to do a quiet time in the afternoon and they get to participate in the class instead. This is the Spunky Girl's year. She was thrilled when after lunch and jobs, she got to sit on the couch with the big kids and do her first online course. :) 

Her goals__
1. Chose to bless and not burden her brother. 
2. Learn to cook with her Mama.
3. Practice listening before speaking.
4. Memorize the word.
5. Chose to say "I can," rather than "I can't," because she truly can do all things through Christ who gives her strength. 

Solomon Jude.
He has two major goals this year and he didn't come up with them on his own__ His Mama did! And she's praying with all her heart that by a sheer miracle he somehow grasps these two things asap. 
1. STOP screaming__please.
2. Come when I call you and don't just stand there and look at me with those two-year-old, "what are you going to do about it Mom?"  eyes.
And the Mama__
My goals have been the same for the past ten years__
Listen more, encourage more, hug more, love well.
Speak words that make their souls stronger.
Offer grace. Receive grace. 
Be brave enough to trust Jesus without borders.

Another year has begun at the one-room schoolhouse. 
And in every beginning, I remind myself of this__
This is the bottom line: Your sins aren’t enough and your strengths aren’t enough. You are not enough— for this parenting gig, this marriage relationship, this homeschooling year, this work project.
Write it on the wall, ink it on some skin, because Christ wrote it with His blood:
Grace is the only thing that is ever enough."