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Free Giveaway!!

It’s time for some fun!  Who likes drawings?  Who likes FREE items?  I will make this really easy!

For the rest of February I am giving away 2 free handmade wooden sign.

Head over to my Facebook page Country Chaos Blog and Like my page.  I will put all new likes from February in a drawing for an awesome handmade wooded sign!!!!
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My dad and I have a craft/woodworking business called The Crafty Wood Shop.  One of my favorite things to make are wooden signs.
Head on over to our Facebook page The Crafty Wood Shop and click Like.  You will be put into a drawing for another wooden sign.
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You can win both drawings!!!
I will let the winners pick a saying a colors on their sign but here are some examples of my boards.
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Tell all your friends so they have a chance to win also!!
Good luck & God Bless,
Crystal
Faith, Marriage, Other, Parenting

Day 26: Peer Pressure

Day 26 of 31 days of Consistency & Children

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How do you handle peer pressure with your children?

All children face it at some point in their young lives.  No parent wants to see their children hurting or struggling with decisions to do the right thing or to follow their friends.  How do we teach our kids not to “Fit In?”

This can be challenging because we want our kids to be liked and to have friends and not to be picked on but we don’t want them to sacrifice their values.

I don’t think God wanted us all to do the same thing.  I am pretty sure God wants us to be our own individual which is why he created us all unique!!

My husband and I try to express to our children that they don’t have to do what everyone else is doing especially if they know it is wrong or if they feel led to do something else.  We all feel judged by others at times and that is hard for kids to experience.

Lynn Cowell is a wonderful woman that will help direct you to raising wise daughters!!!  My two oldest children are girls so I like to use her resources.  I have yet to find a great resource geared toward boys but I am still looking.  If you have any suggestions please share them with me.  I like to have go to Christian resources for ideas!!

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How do you handle peer pressure in your house?  What do you do to prevent your heart from hurting due to the mean things people can say or do when we don’t fit in?

Remember that God is the only one we have to please!!

God Bless,

Crystal

Faith, Other, Parenting

Day 28: Creating Traditions

 

Day 28 of 31 days of Consistency & Children

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I don’t know if you get into Halloween or not.  I used to get much more involved than I do these days.  Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy Halloween and my kids love dressing up and going trick or treating!!

Haley Halloween
Haley as a baby/grandma??
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Haley and I goofing around!!
Kids Halloween
Lathen-Spider, Olivia-Witch, Blake-Batman
Me Halloween
We get to dress up at work so I went as a bee!

When my husband and I had only one child, we used to decorate the house and outside and I would get excited about carving pumpkins.

Carving pumpkins was a big tradition while I was growing up.  I think my dad liked it more than my sister and I did but nonetheless it did become a tradition.  I wanted the same for my family.  I even remember when our daughter was about two years old and my husband came home from being gone all week with a pumpkin that Haley could have fit into!  It was huge but it was the coolest thing!

As I got busier with more children and working full time outside of the home, the decorating part had slipped.  I wanted to decorate but the thought of digging everything out of the basement was daunting.  I didn’t seem to have the energy and then to think that I would have to turn around and pack it all up again, YUCK!!

The sad part is that I know my kids love decorating as they look forward to helping grandma decorate each year.  I really should just suck it up and do it.  Maybe next year:)  Halloween is already this week.

Don’t go hating on me yet!  We do stick to the carving pumpkins tradition and I do enjoy that.

Halloween 2014 Halloween 2012-Dad and Lathen

I will post more later.  Lathen is the only one who has carved a pumpkin yet.  The rest of the pumkins have already rotted:(  Dad will get more tonight so the rest of us can do our pumpkins!!

Creating traditions for your family to follow each year is important for the kids.  They will always have those memories to cherish and hopefully carry on with their families.  My husband and I have stuck with a lot of traditions that our families had over the years.  The issue we have faced is that my husband’s family and my family had variations to the same type of traditions.  It seems that both our families had similar thoughts or ideas passed down but with a little bit of a difference.  When we first started these traditions with our children we were not sure how to implement them but over the years we have agreed on our own ways of doing them!

We have traditions for Easter and Christmas as well as Halloween but these have changed over the past year or so in our family.  Easter and Christmas are not just holidays to me which is one reason I dislike the saying “Happy Holidays” or “Season’s Greetings”.  These holidays are based on Christian events and I want my children to know what Easter and Christmas REALLY stand for.  Last year we started doing things a little different.  Instead of the traditional things people do on these holidays we have changed it up a bit.  On each day and the days building up to Easter and Christmas we talk about what those days mean and read biblical books and right from the Bible.

On Easter we make a cool (and very yummy) treat called Resurrection Rolls.  I also purchased a cool Easter egg hunt idea from familychrisitian.com called Resurrection Eggs.  This follows the traditional egg hunt idea but inside each egg is a symbol.  There is a booklet to explain what each symbol represents.  The kids really enjoyed this last year.

Christmas presents are such a huge deal.  Society has taught kids that more is better or bigger is better.  WRONG!!!  I don’t want it to feel like a competition or that we have to buy just to give a gift.  That is not the message of Christmas.  Don’t get me wrong, we still get our kids presents.  But we only give them each three presents.  This represents the three wise men and the gifts they gave to baby Jesus.  Jesus got three gifts and our kids get three gifts.  They did not quam about it at all!!

Those are just some traditions we do and how we are changing them to fit our lifestyle.  I would love to hear what you do and how it works for your family.

God Bless, Crystal

Cleaning/Organization, Faith, Other, Parenting

Day 21: Designated Areas

Day 21 of 31 Days of Consistency & Children

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Since doing the 31 days challenge I have really been thinking about how my children need a lot of direction.

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They need to be given very strict boundaries and very clear directions in all their daily activities. When too many tasks are left for them to interpret things can go haywire very quickly!

My kids have a toy room and a bedroom and then I thought it would be nice if they had a spot in the living room for some of their toys but I have quickly changed my mind. It is funny how ideas change rapidly when a person is thinking about the issues that can arise from such ideas.

My living room turns into a disaster.

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The toy room has been hit by a massive tornado.

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Their rooms were demolished by a tidal wave in a matter of minutes!!

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Too many areas for them to “play” turns into more work for mom. I have changed my mind!!!

I completely revamped my living room.  NO more toys!  NO more books!  Not in my living room!

I have decided to get their toy room under control as well.  That room will be the only room for their toys and books.  They can have books in their rooms and maybe a few toys but the majority of the stuff will stay in the toy room.   My kids spend most of their time in the toy room anyway so why not keep that the designated room for toys!!

So the consistent part of this is that each and every night they will have to pick up the toy room and any other things that they have gotten out and put it back in its place.  I am sooooooo tired of picking up then turning around to pick up again.  This momma is not going to keep stressing about picking up because I am not going to pick up their stuff anymore.  My kids range from 3 to 15 which is more than old enough to be responsible for their own items.  If they are left out of place I will take it and they may not get it back.  I don’t want to sound mean but I have plenty of other tasks to do each day.

What do you all think?  Please tell me you have similar problems.  What have you done to create less stress for yourself?  Comment with your thoughts, ideas or suggestions!!

God Bless, Crystal

Cleaning/Organization, Faith, Marriage, Other, Parenting

Day 14: Consistency Update

Day 14 of 31 Days of Consistency & Children

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I just want to update ya all on how our routines are going.

My morning routine that I talked about in Day 1 is not going well at all!  I am being honest and telling you that I is HARD to get up early especially when I am TIRED!!!  Now part of that is my fault and I know that.  I have a hard time going to bed early but last night I was in bed with the lights out at 9:30 and my goal is 10:00!!!!

Finally I can go to sleep and get a goods night rest, right??

NOT!!!

At 10:30 I woke up and I can’t even remember why!

11:30 the dog was barking like crazy!

At around midnight my youngest was coughing so hard I thought he was going to throw up!!

Needless to say I almost slept through my alarm which I changed in the middle of the night to 7am instead of 6am:(

On a happy note, the morning routine for the kids is going well in part because we have been picking their clothes out the night before like I talked about in Day 2!

I get them up at 7am and they get dressed.

Then they eat breakfast.

Teeth and hair come next.

Last they get their shoes on and watch for the bus!!!

This works pretty well most mornings except when they have poor listening ears which is mentioned in Day 4!

So they last thing I want to talk about today is the bedtime routine.  Day 10 lays out the plan for that.  It is going okay!  We had a very busy weekend so that was a challenge but we are working.  Each night gets a little easier!

I just told my dad a few minutes ago that he needs to give it all to God so I am going to take my own advice and give all the worries and issues over to God because I know he has this.

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AMEN!!!

God Bless, Crystal

Cleaning/Organization, Other, Parenting

Day 11: Keep Them Busy

Day 11 of 31 Days of Consistency & Children

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Children like to stay busy! They will always find something to do even if you don’t give them something to do and when that happens you may not like what they pick!

They will find entertainment like when my 3 year old was cutting paper which was a wonderful learning time to work on fine motor skills until he decided it would be cool to cut his own hair!

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What I forgot to mention is that they should be supervised while doing these things. I know! I know! That is a good time to do a quick load of laundry or some dishes or jump online quick but they should at least be in your sight!

I have learned a lot since going from full-time to part-time! My kids love doing crafts, art work, reading or really any activity. They like doing things that are monitored with direction which surprised me a bit. It is funny how much I didn’t know about my children! That breaks my heart because my husba n d and I had these little people with no intention of having someone else raise them. I am enjoying what I am learning about each one of them!

So I have been online looking for simple, cheap ideas to do with them. I figure the key to this is to pick a few times each day to work on such things. Consistency! See how I threw that in. Sneaky, right??!!!

Another good resource is the Family Fun magazine. I had subscribed to it years ago and cut out the ideas I liked and created a binder for the such ideas. I put them in categories so I can easily find a holiday or season project to work on. I can finally use these cool ideas because I am with my kiddos much more often which makes this momma happy!

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God Bless, Crystal

Cleaning/Organization, Faith, Other, Parenting

Day 9: Momma is sick

Day 9 of 31 Days of Consistency & Children

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In all the talk about consistency with our children we know that we have to do things over and over again, day in and day out so that things will become a habit, a routine or a consistent thing!

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But what happens we momma doesn’t fell well?? How do we keep things going smoothly in our homes? I ask this because I have been suffering with severe allergy issues the past two days which has made me very sick:(

I have been trying to keep up with things in my home and keep the kids on a routine (which is very hard since my kids have not had one prior to a few months ago) but all I want to do is curl up in a warm blanket by the fireplace and sleep!

God will give me the strength I need but of course the boys are going to push the limits as much as possible. I need help!! What do I do?

sick momma

God Bless, Crystal

Faith, Other, Parenting

Why did God not turn the light on???

A few years ago we started talking about God in our house with our children.  We started praying at meal times and individually.  We have not really prayed as a family but occasionally we do.  One thing we just don’t think about or realize is how our children interpret things unless they clue us in which every now and again my children enlighten me.

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If you have been following the 31 day challenge I am doing you read about my five year old son having surgery yesterday.  This little guy is smart and very inquisitive!!  He asks questions a lot and if he doesn’t understand the answer he will let you know and expect a different answer.  I love this about him even though at times it is hard to explain the answers to him.  He is also a big worry wart.  Now this is bothersome to me a little because he will worry about something so much that I fear it is not good for him.  I knew that having surgery was really weighing on his mind so on Sunday night when we were laying together before bed and I asked him if we should say a prayer.  He likes to pray and does it often.  He will even stop what he is doing and go somewhere he can be alone and pray!!  Anyway, as I was praying asking God to give the medical staff steady hands and wisdom to perform the surgery I asked God to comfort Blake so he would not worry and not be scared.  He stops me in the middle of my prayer and says, “That doesn’t work!”  A little shocked I ask, “What doesn’t work?”  He informs me that when he is sleeping and it is dark and he is scared, God doesn’t come turn the light on for him!!!  Wow, I had to hold back from laughing but his kid was dead serious.  This was no joking matter.

Obviously my prayers are much different than that but to a five-year-old that is an important prayer.  So now I have to try and figure out how to explain why God doesn’t come turn the light on and hope this doesn’t make him think God doesn’t answer prayers.

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The good news is that when we got home from our hour and a half drive from the hospital, my son says, “God did help me!  He helped me at the hospital and he made sure we got home safe!”  This made my heart smile!  He had not given up on God because one prayer was not answered the way he thought it should be.  What a smart kid!!  It is funny what we can learn from our children.

Even when we don’t feel like God is answering our prayers we need to keep turning to him in prayer!  As I learned in my Devotion this morning, prayer doesn’t change God, it changes us!!  We need prayer to soften our hearts. We need prayer to grow closer to God.

As I was worried that my son would not pray anymore or that he would question God, I read my devotion this morning titled “Questioning God!”  How appropriate!  God wanted to ease my mind as a parent and he did so through that devotion.  God is good!!

I just wanted to share that little story to encourage you so you can see that God is here for us even when we question him or when we don’t think he answers our prayers.  God is doing some amazing work in my little mans heart.  Here are a few pictures from yesterday.

My son before surgery with mom and dad
My son before surgery with mom and dad
After surgery-not so happy:(
After surgery-not so happy:(

The thing he was looking forward to the most about having surgery was that he might get to ride in a wheelchair so we made sure that happened:)  He was a trooper and I know God was watching over him!!

God Bless,Crystal

Cleaning/Organization, Faith, Other, Parenting

Day 2: Be Prepared

Day 2 of the 31 days with Consistency & Children

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Yesterday I listed my morning routine and today I did not follow it completely!  But you know what?   It is okay because this is new and I tried and I have completed part of it.

One of my issues is getting upset with the kids in the morning because none of my children are morning people.  They don’t like getting up no matter what time they went to bed.  They can be very winy and stubborn and I tend to have a short fuse in the morning because I am not a morning person either and I am tired.

I am happy to announce that we had a good morning!!

The key to not losing my temper is to think all actions through before letting them take control.  Prayer is very helpful.  God wants us to talk to him, which I do often throughout the day.  He not only wants us to pray for others but also for ourselves.  God knows before hand what we are thinking and going to do.  We don’t have to tell him because he already knows BUT in order to build a relationship with him, we must talk to him.  This helps me get through the tough times.  Since mornings can be rough that is when I talk to God a lot.  This morning went well and know it is because I gave it all to God!!

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Back to the consistency with Children.  One thing I am learning is that we need to pick clothes out the night before.  On occasion we do this but not a regular basis.  That is part of the struggle we have in my house each day.  Why not eliminate that issue all together and just plan ahead and be prepared for morning.

So I am going to get their clothes picked out and placed neatly on the table so they can just get dressed.

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Now don’t get me wrong, I know there will be days that I will hear such things as, “I don’t want to wear that today!” or “It is cold today, I am not wearing that!”  I know that will happen but for the most part this should help the mornings go more smoothly.

Does anyone do this already or plan to adopt this idea?  Let me know your thoughts in the comments!!

Check back tomorrow to see how my routine is going!

God Bless each and every one of you.

Crystal~

Faith, Other, Parenting

31 Days of Consistency & Children

I have decided to take my blog to the next level and do the 31 Days Challenge.  I am going to add a new blog post each and every day in October.

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For those of you who know me well, know that I don’t usually stick to things very well so this will be a challenge to say the least.  Feel free to throw some encouragement my way as I show you how (in very small steps) I am going to become consistent with my kids.  I need to start routines and have wanted to do this for a long time.

I understand that baby steps will be crucial for ME so I will share with you what I am implementing each day along with God’s encouragement.  I will also include tips and some resources to help you along the way.  My hope is that we can learn together but if you have good consistency and routines set up please share with me!!!  I will post the link each day once it becomes live.

Check back daily to see how things are going!

Best of luck of to everyone on your consistent journey!!

Crystal