Family

Category Archives: Family

The Life We Never Expected

I was wiping down high chairs for the millionth time when the call came through. The day felt normal, typical of the blur of other days that had gone before and would come after, but it wasn’t a normal day. The developmental psychologist my son Zeke had seen was on the line. She wanted to

Make This Summer With Your Kids Count

kids togetherAh, summer. For many of us, the word is synonymous with any number of good things: long, sundrenched days, vacations, going to the pool, the smell of freshly cut grass, baseball, etc. But the summer months also offer a great chance for parents to help their kids grow and develop in an intentional manner. Toward that end, my wife Rachel—who does a great job thinking this through for our own three kids—weighs in with today’s guest post. As you read, keep in mind that each family’s goals will be different given all the variables, including the age of kids, work responsibilities, summer school, etc. And remember that reality sometimes falls short of even the best intentions. It’s a lesson we’re taught regularly at our house!

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I love the idea of using summertime with my kids in a way that makes a lasting impact. But when it comes to parenting, if we don’t have some goals in mind for our kids–whether long-term or short-term–it’s easy to lose sight of where we are going. It’s easy to waste the precious little time we have with these young souls in our charge. (I’m speaking from a “guilty as charged” place myself!) That’s why it’s helpful to think through some specific goals for our summer with our children. Here are a few things I’ve learned over the years about that process.

3 Reminders for the Weary Mom

Being a mom can be hard. I’m only five months into this motherhood thing, but the longer I’m in the more I begin to understand what busy moms go through each day and what it really means when everyone tells you how sanctifying this new season of life will be.

Enter into our past weekend: I’m sick with some kind of stomach bug, my husband is away for work and ministry events, and my son becomes a feverish and clingy five month old who no longer cares that sleeping is actually a gracious gift from God. I would love to report that I handled everything with perfect poise and patience toward everyone around me. But it would probably be closer to the truth to say that, in fact, I was once again reminded that my sin runs far deeper than I usually care to admit.

What We Have Loved, Others Will Love

“What we have loved others will love and we will teach them how.” -William Wordsworth- As a public school teacher, the words above became somewhat of a mantra. I hung them up as a reminder about what I wanted the students in my classroom to experience. They were words that also caused me to pause and

Preparing Your Preschooler for Christmas: Week Three

Children learn, grow and are shaped more in the first five years of life than any other time! What a wonderful opportunity we have as parents to hide the amazing, life-changing Christmas story in their little hearts this time of year. Although, I’ve listed ideas for teaching the story of The Wise Men below, feel

Preparing Your Preschooler for Christmas: Week Two

Nathan began a series last week that explains what we are planning to do with our young kids to prepare them for Christmas. We had so much fun at breakfast playing with our “nativity set” (i.e. a mish-mosh of Little People sets) and acting out the journey to Bethlehem (see picture of our 2-year-old at

Preparing Your Preschooler for Christmas

Want a few ideas to help prepare your preschool age child for Christmas? Sure you do, and I’ll give you a few thoughts as to why. Most of us realize that we live in a time and place in which it can be extremely difficult to keep the proper perspective on the significance of Christmas.

Seven Quick Thoughts on Praying with Your Kids

Most of us probably think it’s a good idea, at least in theory, to pray with our kids at bedtime. But we may be unsure of what we should pray with them about. Or we may think we sound like one of those particularly annoying toys that repeats the same phrases over and over again. Not to mention all the times when we’re dog-tired or the kids are on the verge of meltdown because they’ve stayed up way too late for one reason or another. And in my house at least, there’s three of the little buggers, which in itself can make the hill look that much higher to climb. So yes, there are plenty of things that might discourage us from turning something good in theory into our actual practice.

With all that in mind, here are a few things to remember as we consider praying for our kids. I’ve thought of bedtime specifically as I’ve written these, but I think they’re relevant for most other times as well.

How to Talk to Your Kids About Sex

Talking to our kids about sex can be one of the more daunting and awkward things we do as parents. But if we don’t, who will?

As it turns out, lots of people. And that’s the problem.

Movies, music, and magazines, TV shows and their commercials, online images and everyday conversations with friends—they’re all regularly communicating ideas about sex to our kids. And those ideas are often a significant distortion of the good and powerful gift that God has given us in sex.

Consider a few illuminating stats:

7 Tips to Help Your Kids Engage with Media/Entertainment

Apart from throwing our kids into solitary confinement and shoving them meals through a slot in the door, every parent eventually has to make decisions about how to guide their consumption of TV shows, movies, music, YouTube videos, websites, and other media and entertainment options. Even failing to adopt a strategy is, by default, adopting a strategy. But if we’re wanting to take a wise, biblically-shaped approach, we need to do think through some principles that will help us guide our kids as they navigate the sea of popular culture.

We should acknowledge that there’s no flow chart or set of “if/then” statements that we could list that could cover every situation, but the following points should at least steer us in the right direction.