Part 5 - Notes from Homekeeping & Homeschooling Book

Chapter 9 - A Hospitable Home

  • Genuine Hospitality - True hospitality consists of who you are and not what you have.  When you are hospitable, you are obedient to the Lord. Romans 12:13  GUEST = Give Graciously, Understand Usual Needs, Educate for Etiquette, Simplify Your System, Take Time
  • Give Graciously - Cultivate a gracious and joyful heart that is focused on others.
  • Understand Usual Needs - Anticipate your guests' requirements.  Plan ahead so you can actually spend time with your guests rather than continually excusing yourself for meal or snack preparations.  Look at your home from your guests' perspectives to understand what they might require for comfort.
  • Educate for Etiquette - Teach children table manners before having guests over.  The most important rule of etiquette is always to think of the other person's needs.  Do what makes someone else comfortable.
  • Simplify Your System - If you keep it simple, you will want to have guests often.  Don't replace the JOY of friends with the JOB of entertaining.
  • Take Time - Show our children a picture of loving others by bringing them into the intimate parts of our life - into our homes.

Chapter 10 - Finishing Well

God is faithful - the outcome is down the road!

  • Our Part - Four principles for finishing well = Pray, Plan, Pool Your Resources and Persevere.
  • Pray - Stay close to God if you want to finish well.
  • Plan - Good planning helps us balance more effectively.
  • Pool Your Resources - Pool your resources with other like-minded home educators.
  • Persevere - God will teach you to make wise use of your precariously short time.  He teaches you to yield to the Holy Spirit, who brings your daily life under control and produces a life that brings honor and glory to Him.  Desire the Lord Himself above everything in your life.

Devotion: Pray for the Lord to draw you back or to draw you closer to Him.  Ask Him to show you the things that are causing you to drift away.

*Base your definition of "success" of homeschooling and homekeeping on the Lord's desires for you!

2 Chronicles 26:3-5
Sixteen years old was Uzziah when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty and two years in Jerusalem. His mother's name also was Jecoliah of Jerusalem.
And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father Amaziah did.
And he sought God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding in the visions of God: and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him to prosper.

Proverbs 3:3-8
Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:
So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.
It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

This concludes all my notes from the book: "Homeschooling at the Speed of Life."

Related: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

Part 4 - Notes from Homekeeping & Homeschooling Book

Chapter 6 - Record-Keeping Made Easy
  • The Big Picture - Overall view of record-keeping - creating and using records.  Your family is not a school and you have no need to duplicate one.  If you overplan and lack flexibility, you will make yourself and your family miserable and accomplish little beyond filling out forms.
  • Plan to Plan - Process of planning: (1) Decide - some clutter questions apply to forms and tools for records: What do I need?  Why do I need it?  Who else needs it?  Make a homeschool mission statement and goal sheet for each year. (2) Document - keep an academic portfolio for each child.  Keep your plan simple and uncomplicated.
  • Setting Up Files - choose where to store records: file cabinet, box, etc.
  • File-a-Plan - set up folders for your files, choose categories for your family.  Appendix B gives a list of possible categories and forms available.
  • Archive - A once-a-year clean-out is necessary to control the volume of useless papers in your files.  The archive is a place for records you don't use frequently but may need in the future.
  • Forms, Files, and a Final Word - Records are a means to an end not the end itself.  Use records as your aid, don't become a slave to the system.
Devotion: God keeps records - generations, Book of Life, etc.  He also told man to record information He wants man to remember - the Bible.

Chapter 7 - Real Life Around the House

Fit school around the family, not family around the school.  Set aside time to better prepare yourself.

  • Special Challenges - There are a lot of books out there on various special challenges in homeschooling; single-parent homeschooling; homeschooling special needs, etc.
  • Real-Life Lessons - She shares a story of how she hardly did any school one year because they were building a house and the lessons she learned from that.  *When special challenges arise, you and your family must adjust while still learning, the children and you.
  • SOS Day - Declare an SOS day (Salvage Our Sanity) when overwelmed with clutter.  It can be hours or even an SOS week or month.  It does save your sanity!
  • Ketchup Day - Institute a Ketchup day (Catch Up) to regroup when you fall behind with normal tasks.  Work on your non-emergency list tasks.
  • EDIT Day - Easy Does It - time of focus; time of mental, physical and emotional regrouping rather than work.  Shop, take a bubble bath and read a book, etc.  Anything to renew your spirit.
  • God's Plans - What God wants us to learn far outweighs what we want our children to learn.  Benefit from flexibility rather than seeing obstacles as diversion from what you really want to do.  You ARE schooling when children learn real life around the house!

Chapter 8 - A Family - Not a School
  • A Family First - God highly regards His special creation - the family.
  • The Stress of Disorganization - Organization helps a family fulfill its mission in life; disorganization is stressful and thus has a negative effect on the family.  It can have a domino effect - Mom isn't organized and that causes stress.  Mom's stress affects the family and home and school suffer and are chaotic.  Family relationships become tense and slowly erode.  The family breaks down and blames the trouble on homeschooling.  Organization is a family responsibility!  Even if you didn't homeschool you would still have stress to deal with - schools and teachers - and disorganization would remain the same.
  • Purposeful Family Life - Stochastic means lacking any definite plan, order, or purpose; depending on or governed by chance.  Stochastic is the opposite of how God designed our families to function.  Disorder diverts us from purposeful family living.
  • Extended Family Relationships
  • Grandparents Can Help - Long list of do's and don'ts for grandparents.

Related: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

It's Your Choice

In a free country like ours, we get to make a lot of choices: where we live, what we buy, how many children we can have, and even what teaching we choose to put our children under.  What do you choose?  You as the parent make the choice on what your child will be taught.  You would think most Christians would choose Godly education right?  However, the majority of those that call themselves Christians have made the CHOICE to place them under false atheistic teaching.  It isn't like we live in a country that comes and takes your child and forces them to be taught about evolution and a God-less history.  We actually have a choice in what our children are taught.

What would you say to God if He asked you why Sally is learning that God did not create her or that God did not make the world?  Any excuse you would say wouldn't hold water with God.  He would look at the facts - you had a choice!  God doesn't think its cute for Sally to learn lies.  God isn't FOR teaching that is against Him.  He is not a Godless school advocate!  Satan is though, so you aren't alone in that choice.  Yet, you chose to let your child be taught in the way of the world and lies and false teaching.  You chose Godless teachers to have the most impressionable hours of your child's day and to mold their mind against anything to do with God!  It was your choice!  You chose Godless education.  You chose atheist teachers.  You chose to let your child learn about homosexuality at the school you chose to put them in.  You chose to brush off all conscience when they came home with a wicked book to read.  You chose that, no one made you do it!

I honestly, don't understand how some can do that in a free country.  We can CHOOSE to train our children in God-filled education.  We can choose to let them be taught the TRUTH and not put them under the false teaching of the world.  We are held accountable for our choices, especially in our choices with children we are supposed to be raising in the fear of the Lord and His ways, not Satan's.  So HOW, how, how - and WHY, why, why - would 'Christians' freely choose to deem God as irrelevant for 8 hours of their child's day?

Then, the child leaves God in later years and the parent is still giving excuses.  My child made their choice, I have done my part.  Really?  You chose to let them be trained in that "way" and you were fine with them learning falsehood and lies.  Your child chose to trust you by trusting the teachers you put over them and those teachers taught them the world is where its at.  Those teachers taught them that success is in the world.  The child went in the "way" it was taught, so why would we be surprised?

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

Over the years I've heard the above verse twisted around so many ways, but it means what it means.  Notice, there is a WAY the child should go.  Is the WAY the road to the world, evolution and Godless learning?  Well, if you trained the child in that WAY, then they won't depart from it.  However, that is not the WAY God was talking about.  What is considered 'greatness' and 'success' in this world is nothing to God.  His path is the road less taken and few there be that actually find it!

What do you choose for your child?  It is time we really think on why we are doing what we are doing and especially on the way we choose for our children and their minds.  We will be held accountable for our choices and some may have everlasting consequences.  Does God agree with your teaching choice?  Would he advocate your child's learning?  Is it Godly, wholesome and truthful?  If not, then why are you allowing it?  It's your choice!

Part 3 - Notes from Homekeeping & Homeschooling Book

Chapter 4 - Teaching Children Life Skills

It's easier to do the chores ourselves than take twice as long to teach a child again to do it.  You teach your children's minds, but you train their will, which is more difficult.

  • It Begins with You - If you have weaknesses in homemaking skills, diligently continue to improve those areas.  Children learn discipline when they see you exhibit discipline in your life.  Focus shouldn't be more on the chore but on the character that mastering and completing the chore builds into their lives.  Your children will quickly catch your attitudes.
  • Life Skills - If I don't teach ____, will the lack of that knowledge be harmful or a hindrance to them later in life?  How can learning this skill be a vehicle to teaching a greater character lesson?
  • Functional Neatness - It is worth the investment of time to teach children chores.  When children do simple chores, they learn to think in an orderly way.  Not only praise them for the good job, praise them also for the character trait they display.
  • Simple Rules - Simple rules are more effective and are easier to maintain while teaching a skill or habit to children.  Make a few simple and enforceable rules necessary to operate your home.  Give a penalty for violating a rule.
  • Gaining Cooperation - The difficult part is sticking to the rules.  Follow-up to see if child did chore and did it correctly.  Work time/Study time/Play time.  Give child good instruction on how to do a job.
  • Your Child's Room - Simple and enforceable rules also apply for child's room.  Clearly define a clean for them.  List the things you plan to inspect and post in their room.  A chore chart provides accountability for children.
  • The Makeover - Apply clutter principles to child's room.  Use a box to store excess toys and rotate every few months.  Makeover the child's room.
  • Dads Can Help
  • Maintenance Training - Continue to teach good habits.  Establish pickups and cleanups as a part of your child's regular routine.
  • Time & Priorities - Include children in discussions of family priorities.  Help them understand that changing goals occasionally is normal.  Experience teaches your children a great deal about priorities and about life.  Allow them room to make poor choices about time and priorities and then let them suffer the consequences.
  • Record-Keeping and Finances - Give child a calendar to record lesson times and dates, music practice, appointments, etc.
  • Precept Upon Precept - You must teach over and over.

Chapter 5 - Paper By the Pile

  • Under the Pile - The more you assign convenient places for your paper and other things, the less you will pile those things.
  • Types of Paper - Don't view paper as one category, view its as different categories.
  • Paper Questions - 1.  What do I really need?  2.  Why do I need it?  3.  Who else needs it?
  • Paper Guidelines - Clutter principles apply to paper as well.
  1. Retrieve It - If you aren't able to retrieve paper, it is of no value to you.
  2. Deal With Mail - Open mail daily near a trash can, paper shredder or paper recycling bin.  Use a designated box or container for mail.
  3. Create a Central Center for Paper - create a work center for most of your paper.
  4. File It.  Don't Pile It - The quicker you deal with papers, the less digging out you will have to do.
  5. Control Paper - Be cautious about ways you produce or receive more paper.  Make deliberate choices about what to keep and what you can replace later.
  • F Sharp Paper Routing System - this is a temporary routing system.
F - File It
S - Send It
H - Hold It
A - Answer It
R - Read It
P - Pay It
  1. F-File It - papers you must file or store.
  2. S-Send It - items you need to send or give to someone outside of your home.
  3. H-Hold It - papers like invoices that need to be held temporarily and then filed or discarded.
  4. A-Answer It - items that need your response or requires action.
  5. R-Read It - items that you need to read; keep a container by a chair with these items and/or read-a-louds.  Clean out every 3-4 months.
  6. P-Pay It - bills to pay
  • Personalizing the System - Have easy access to your file system.  You can color-code each category.  Don't complicate system, keep it simple and you will more likely use it.  Make an action or hot folder for urgent things.  If you make a lot of calls, have a special calls folder.  You can have a different folder for each member of the family.
  • Consistency & Persistence - Set a goal of 10-15 minutes a day to deal with paper.  Gain control of incoming paper and gradually deal with accumulated papers.

Related: Part 1, Part 2

Part 2 - Notes from Homekeeping & Homeschooling Book

Chapter 3 - Clutter, Clutter Everywhere and Not a Spot to Think
Things are only useful when they don't hinder relationships with people and when they help you enjoy and serve the people around you.
  • Balance - Clutter is the largest reason you and your family can't clean quickly or well.  It slows you down and drains energy and joy from your life.
  • Clutter Quiz - 18 question quiz; #18: If the Lord called you home today, would you be horrified if your spouse accepted help from friends, relatives, or especially your mother-in-law to sort through your things?
  • Functional Neatness - A comfortable place between (1) an obsessive neatness demanded by a mother who doesn't allow for a mess of any kind and is overworked trying to maintain that standard, and (2) slovenly conduct by family members.  *Neat enough to be peaceful and messy enough to be happy.  Everyone in the family functions better.
  • The Good News - There's a difference between destructive, chaotic clutter and happy messes.  Hobbies and living life are happy messes or creative messes.  Know the difference between clutter/junk and happy messes.  Creative messes are temporary or useful.
  • Junk Journey - List areas that need attention, number by priority or check them off as you complete them.
  • Small is Better - If your overwhelmed, choose one small area first to give you momentum.  Finish one area before moving onto the next.
  • Gather Containers - Plastic bins hold small items and look neater.
  • Don't Rearrange - Start with an empty space clean it, wipe it, wash it, vacuum it, etc.  A clean slate helps to end clutter effectively.
  • Decisions, Decisions, Decisions - Decision-making is the most difficult part of decluttering.
  • Sort, Sort, Sort - Use three containers: Necessary, Nice and Never.  Store nice items in area's outside your home's usual daily traffic areas.  Nice = Special or occasion items; Annually; Christmas decorations, etc.
  • Location, Location, Location - Put items in a place that is near where you frequently use it.  Put a game cabinet/shelf where you normally play them.
  • Dispensations & Exceptions - Luke 12:15; PASS box = Parting is Sweet Sorrow; Give items time and then see if you use them or still want them later.
  • Saving Sentiments - Take a picture of things that are hard to get rid of; picture saves valuable space.  For homeschool projects and special things, have a display table and agree on time to display items.  Take a picture of child with project/creation, etc.  Use an art folder or box for child's special papers or drawings.
  • Wise Warning from the Word - Easier to keep a home clutter free than it is to make it clutter free.

Luke 12:13-34
1 Timothy 6:6-8

Related: Part 1 Notes

Part 1 - Notes from Homekeeping & Homeschooling Book

I started reading "Homeschooling at the Speed of Life" by Marilyn Rockett today and I love it!  I'm only in the second chapter but wanted to share my notes with you all as I go along.  I'm finding the book just what I was needing and looking for.  It incorporates God into the home management equation and doesn't leave him out, like so many other authors do.  The scriptures are from a version of a Bible that I've never even heard of, so I keep my KJV handy to look them up.  God has already touched my heart in many areas reading this today!  This book will help you manage your home with homeschooling, but I think any homekeeper could glean wisdom from this book.  The book comes with a CD that has lots of printables for some of the things she talks about in the book!

You can see a preview of the book here.

* We are not striving for a "perfect" home but rather a "God-honoring" home.

Organization is making your life work for you
by bringing the dailiness of life under control
through yielding to the Holy Spirit
concerning the wise use of your time

Chapter 1 - Foundation for Organization
6 Principles
  1. God's Design
  2. God's Plans - God planned even to the smallest detail; creation; tabernacle, etc.
  3. God's Image - When we fail to plan and we don't use our time wisely, our frustration rises from the chaos and confusion, but it also comes from the fact that we are disharmonious with the way God designed us.
  4. God's Command - God commands us to plan.  Doing what we want and how we want all the time, leads to traps of our own making: disorder, lack of productivity and costly price for unwise choices.  God instructs us to do things decently and in order, because that reflects who He is.  Chaos doesn't please Him.  A wise heart knows the proper time and procedure. (Ecc. 8:5b-6a)
  5. God's Provision - God provides for us through plans - His and ours.
  6. God's Lessons - Trust God's plan; Trust God to teach us to determine the wisest use of our time.  Yield to the Holy Spirit for choices.
Chapter 2 - Real-Life Home Management
Ordinary people think merely of spending time.  Great people think of using it. - Author Unknown
  1. People and Things - People are more important than things, but things out of control hinder our relationships with people.
  2. Establish Priorities - write out family mission statement with what the family decides are the priorities, then evaluate each new activity whether it will fit.
  3. Set Goals & Plan Ahead - The resourceful woman foresees potential problems before they occur and takes action to prevent those problems.  Make a list of things I want to change, then set a goal and a plan to reach that goal.
  4. Keep It Simple Sweetie (KISS) - establish a simple basic routine based on a predictable sequence.  Assess each room with a paper divided into four sections: Daily, Weekly, Monthly and Annually (or Seasonally).
  5. Write Things Down - make a list with four columns: Errands, To-Do, Projects and Non-Emergency Tasks
  6. Begin Small - face the things that trouble you the most.  One step at a time.
  7. Deal with Clutter - clutter not only affects the aesthetics but also the emotional, spiritual and physical aspects of your life.
  8. Don't Compare - Learning from others is a positive; comparing yourself to others is detrimental.  Has the urgent crowded out the important in your busyness?
  9. Be Flexible and Trust God - Distractions happen; expect them!  God will guide you.  The things that come up in your life aren't surprises to God.
  10. Sloooow Down and Say No - There is no cure for over-commitment short of amputation of unnecessary activities.  Align your choices with your priorities.  *Raising and teaching your children is the most important, long-reaching mission you'll accomplish with your life; and God has called you to that task.
  11. Take Time for the Lord and for Rest - You have to plan the time for God and for rest.  Mothers need rest and refreshment in order to serve their families.  If you are too busy to meditate on Scripture and to pray, you are out of balance.
  12. A Mother's Job Description - always adjusting trifles.  Real life brings pressure for the difficult job of managing a home while home educating, and you must continually adjust and start again.
  13. Persevere - Learn from mistakes and move forward towards your goal.
This was from the second point above but it was such a powerful statement in the book and one I totally agree with, that I wanted to bring your attention to it more. 
The resourceful woman foresees potential problems before they occur and takes action to prevent those problems.