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Redeeming the Bad Day - Live life with your kids - Issue 060
June 27, 2008
Hi there! ....

This week:

I’ve been reviewing our chore system. Our children have been doing chores for many years and it is easy to allow them to remain at a comfortable level of doing daily chores, without ever considering if they can take on more. A few weeks ago I tweaked things so that they were responsible for the whole week, for the daily chores in one area of the house (Kitchen, Laundry, Bathroom, Outside). This week I have added an extra task each day, so that they are helping with the deeper cleaning. Training our children to do these household chores isn’t a matter of relieving myself of any responsibilities – no, my responsibilities are to train and monitor and to set the example by working myself. We are doing more than training our children to look after their own possessions. As our children gain the skills and awareness of tasks to be done, they will take notice of needs around them, outside of the home, and be able to address those needs. This is why it is important to train our children’s hearts towards these chores not just the tasks themselves. There is always opportunity to serve and bless others.

Live life with my kids!

Beyond the Quote
Redeeming the Bad Day

The best laid plans of mice and men …

Everyone has bad days. It seems as if the world is conspiring against you and there is no escaping. On these days, you wake up and your day is on a downward spiral -everything goes wrong all at once; not only in your own life, but also in the life of every little person who lives in your house. Not to mention the computers, the pet dog and the sewage! Yep. We all know bad days.

The trick to making these bad days work with you and not against you is to recognise what is going on. The quicker and the earlier you are honest with yourself about where this day is heading the better for you and for your family.

When defeat comes,
accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound,
rebuild those plans,
and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.

--Napoleon Hill,
American Author, Speaker, Motivational Writer

Though I object to the word "Defeat", (I am an optimist) in a sense that is what happens on these days. We have plans, good plans, plans that have worked in the past but today - those plans are not going to be successful. Instead of wafting along, struggling to reach those plans regardless, or in spite of, we need to refocus for the day, and be clear of our ultimate goals - to grow in relationships with God and man, to grow in wisdom and serve others.

Recognise the Bad Day
In hindsight we are very clear what went on but in the midst of a bad day things are not that clear; we wonder what is going on, how this is happening and we have no idea what to do about it. It is helpful to think now, on a good day, what does happen on your bad days and to make a plan. What are your parameters for a good day, when does it cross over to a bad day? For me the number one bad day boundary is when I find myself yelling at the kids. Something has to change – NOW!

Get Relationships Right
It is often the friction in relationships that indicates a bad day so before anything else can happen, people have to be loving towards each other – this includes me! You may have to take some time out from each other to work on attitudes, to be prepared to forgive and love, or there maybe a need for a big group hug! Take as long as it takes, relationships can’t be rushed but they are oh so precious.

Spend time with God
Depending on the ages of your children you may or may not be able to do this privately. There is great benefit from saying to your kids, “Let’s sit down and read God’s Word together” and/or “Pray together”. I have often found turning on worship music (not entertainment music, even if Christian, but worship music) to be a great calmer of the heat and confusion of such a day.

Ditch the day
To ditch the day means to re-write priorities for your day. What are THE most important things to get done today? First there is the relationships with each other, can everything else wait? Maybe and maybe not, but it is worth a quick review of your day to really find out. Believe me, our children are going to remember the relationship moments we make with them far more than the educational efforts we make. We need to be able to let go of our lesson plans if things get a little shaky around us.

Be thankful
Thankfulness is always a great attitude adjuster.

When we take that brave step and do something to fix the bad day often the circumstances don’t really change. The kids are still tired, the dishwasher is still leaking, the power is still out, and the fish are still dead! It is not about the circumstances, it is about our relationships with our children. Can we rescue this day and, by changing our expectations and focus, make a day to remember.

I am not talking about fancy parties, and memorable trips to the Theme parks. I am thinking more about the way that the children remember how their family deals with pressure. How their family works together and cares for each other in practical ways. How their family huddles together and comes out smiling. At the end of the day do you want to be talking about the tears over math workbooks or hearing “I love you” from each of your children?

Yes, bad days happen and they take their toll but if we are wise we can go with it, not fight it, and as a result – beat those bad days!

Website Updates

There are no updates on my website this week.

If you want to browse Lifestyle Homeschool may I suggest you read Relationship Based Activities that help us redeem a bad day (or get us back on track after a “bad” season!)

Work Ethics - Teaching our children to work is easily overlooked in our modern culture where we want an easy life and encourage our children to have a fun childhood.

Write your own page at Lifestyle Homeschool! Simply tell me the Learning Activities that are going on in your house as you live life with your kids! As we hear stories from other families it helps us to relax and let life be a part of our education plan.

My Sitemap is a quick reference to all you will find on Lifestyle-Homeschool. I encourage you to have a browse around!

Keep up with future additions with the Lifestyle Homeschool Blog throughout the week.

Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!

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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter I know homeschool mums are busy with lots to read, so I have divided my newsletter into four sections and you will receive one section a week; short but regular newsletters!
  • Be a Deliberate Parent – Encouragement to continue in purposeful and intentional parenting.
  • Family Life is a Resource for Education – Spotlights on a particular aspect of family life so we can see the natural opportunities available to us in educating our children.
  • Character Education – Each month we focus on a different character trait – The newsletter will include application for Mums, as well as seeing character training opportunities in everyday life.
  • A Homeschool Thought – Discussing homeschool issues

The newsletter will also keep you updated with all additions to Lifestyle-Homeschool

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