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One of my husband’s favorite stories to tell/points to make in our “Reaching the Heart of Your Teen” seminar/workshop is also the most fitting way to describe his parenting style. The story comes from the book of II Samuel and the point is found within the story of Absalom standing by the gate of the city:


“And Absalom rose up early, and stood beside the way of the gate: and it was so, that when any man that had a controversy came to the king for judgment, then Absalom called unto him, and said, Of what city art thou? And he said, Thy servant is of one of the tribes of Israel.

And Absalom said unto him, See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed of the king to hear thee.

Absalom said moreover, Oh that I were made judge in the land, that every man which hath any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice!

And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him obeisance, he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him.

And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: so Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.”



In case you missed how that passage is related to parenting in general and parenting teens specifically (it’s easy to miss), let me point out two specific parts of the story that are relevant to our message to fathers today.

Read the full post→

When I first began home schooling thirty years ago, I had just graduated with an elementary education degree. I had a one-year-old son, and we began home schooling my younger sister. Of course, coming right out of teacher’s college, I began doing things just like I would have done in my classroom. I soon discovered that all of the classroom things were not necessary – that those things were needed for mass education but not necessarily for one-on-one tutoring (or even small group instruction).



Even after discovering this, however, I still had this urge to be a “teacher.” That is, I was always drawn to materials that were teacher-intensive. I love teaching! And I still do. But by the time I had my third child in school, with a preschooler, toddler, and baby, I was teaching eight and ten hours a day. Something had to change.


It was then that I discovered many independent curriculum items for my children. We had already been using Geo Safari, a computerized laptop type of game that taught and quizzed the children on geography, history, art, and much more. I began using a lot of other less teacher-intensive items. I developed independent work lists for each child based on each one’s age and level. These independent work lists had checklists for each day that the children could do without my input, such as the aforementioned Geo Safari, Calculadders math drill sheets, Mathsafari, educational coloring books, and much more.

Click for Tips On Choosing Your Curriculum→

Yes, you read that title right! Our twenty-one year old engaged son (soon to be married–in four months!) NEEDS his parents.


(As a side note, ever since we have had sixteen, eighteen, and twenty year olds, we have believed that sixteen to twenty is actually the highest need time for our kids in terms of parental guidance and input….but that is another post for another day.)

There are key things that we can do to help Jonathan be a great boyfriend, awesome fiance–and soon, fantastic husband!

Jonathan and Maelynn have been engaged for six months, a couple for two and a half years, and best friends for two years prior to that. Jonathan is our third child to get married, so we have quite a bit of experience in the boyfriend/fiance department (as well as a mishap or two along the way–there is no perfect way to help our kids find their way in the romantic relationship/marriage department!).


We have been extremely active in Jonathan and Maelynn’s relationship from the beginning (as we have been for all three marrieds and another daughter in a serious relationship now). But not just Mom and Dad–the siblings kept their phones handy on the night that Jonathan was to propose–and texts, pictures, well-wishes, and love you’s were flying across cell phone lines throughout the night.


Donna Reish, author of forty curriculum books for homeschoolers and Christian schools and co-author/co-presenter of “Raising Kids With Character” Parenting Seminar (and blog), brings you a practical episode of Wondering Wednesday! In this week’s episode, Donna answers some of the questions that she is often asked about freezer cooking—with ten questions you want to ask yourself before you begin freezer cooking.

Donna gives you insights into freezer cooking by looking at areas such as what stage you want your freezer meals in when you defrost them, what containers can you afford, what types of meals do you want to end up with, and what kind of cook are you. By answering these (and several other) questions, you can be ready to dig in to freezer cooking and get organized for healthy meals for your family.


Listen Now!

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Wowsie, sometimes I really miss BBQ—you know the sweet, yet spicy/tangy, taste of BBQ ribs from Outback or pulled pork from a street vendor at the fair? And when I start feeling that way, I know that it is time to pull out my Sugar-Free Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce and make something yummy!


And in grilling season, this is just the perfect dish—without any of the guilt or sluggishness associated with sugar-laden BBQ sauces (okay, and that sweet bread AND bloomin’ onion AND homemade croutons AND…you get the idea!).


Click here for the recipe!→


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