Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The WSJ on Boys and Reading

This is a great article.
Here's a prevalent, well-meaning, but completely false thought:
It doesn't matter what a child reads, as long as he's reading!

And God's word says:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Phil. 4:8

I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless.
Psalm 101:3a

The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge,
but the mouths of fools feed on folly.
Proverbs 15:14

Thoughts on Husbands (from my Six-Year-Old)

Just overheard as littles are playing house outside my door:

Row: "Joe, you're supposed to be nice to me! You're my husband!!

That's a good word, Rowie. And you've had a good model to observe. :)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Seven Quick Things 9/24/10

A favorite blogger of mine has begun posting 'Seven Quick Takes' Fridays, so I thought I'd follow suit. A good way to quickly throw a post together and not feel pressure to make it all cohesive. :)

1. This weather is gorgeous! It's really fall! I have been telling my girls quite often lately that it's too early to wear that new sweatshirt or cute long-sleeved's been in the '80s, for goodness sake. But today, well, they got to keep those clothes on that they've been dying to pull out. Fall weather just makes me feel excited; who knows why? I just love it.

2. Our house is still on the market and it's been really quiet lately. Nary a showing this week. Sometimes, I even forget we are selling. We'll see what happens. We're still praying that we would be able to sell and downsize (price, not square footage).

3. I forgot to reply to some questions about Classical Conversations from an earlier post--Sorry! Yes, we only meet on Mondays, from 8:45-3:00. The kids and I are enjoying it and I am amazed at all we are learning. Though it
is a bit annoying to have a history sentence pop into your mind on your way to the potty at 3:00 a.m. After the church split into Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox, William the Conqueror defeated King Harold of England in 1066...

4. Speaking of homeschooling, math is killin' me. This year, I have four students 'doing' formal math programs, and though the older two work their lessons independently, I have to go over missed problems and re-teach concepts that they can't figure out on their own. I am not a math person, and was always a very poor math student, so it's a stretch for me to re-learn all those hated (I know I'm not supposed to say that, but it's true) concepts and be able to explain them to oldest. Can I just say, that whoever decided to include long division problems with fill-in-the-blank missing numbers in random places is e-vil. You Saxon moms know what I'm talking about.

5. Kevin and I snagged a book off of my Aunt Bren's shelf when we were in Louisiana last month. It's called Whatever Happened to the American Dream, by Larry Burkett. It was written in '93, and probably quickly found its way into the bargain bins, 'cause it ain't a cheerful book. But, we have been amazed at how prescient Burkett was about things that are coming to pass right now. I'm looking forward to getting to the last few chapters that deal with solutions and preparing for the future.

6. Speaking of Louisiana, I got a CD of pictures in the mail from my aunt this week. We had so much fun with my family! It was over too quickly, but we squeezed in lots and lots of fun! Here are some pictures.

Annesley with her buddy Uncle Gary

Fun with the cousins!

Can you tell that the golf carts were a hit? (Laura, I am SO sorry to put out a picture of you with your eyes closed, but it was such a cute one of the kids. And, we can all still see how beautiful you are!)

Mom with her four sisters--my dear aunts!

7. Lastly, I am feeling like a good movie. I think the last 'new' movie we rented was Alice in Wonderland, with Johnny Depp. Kevin and I were less than impressed. Any good recommendations?

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Story

We were at the Asian market wondering what things were and wishing for my Japanese-speaking friend Mary Jane....when Lily announce she had to use the ladies' room. So, we saw a nearby place with a clean bathroom and ran in to use it...and the smell lured us to the counter to see...and we were only going to get a half dozen but then the guy behind the counter said we could get a full dozen for only a dollar and something more (great marketing!), so we wanted to be wise with our dollars and said 'okay'...and that's my story. I'm stickin' to it.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Just Quickly...

I don't have much time this morning, as we are getting ready to head out to our Monday CC group, but I just wanted to quickly say a couple of things. First of all, thank you all so much for your prayers and kind words. You have no idea how much they encouraged and blessed me. Just knowing that people were lifting prayers on my behalf was wonderful.

Secondly, I am o.k.! I'm doing much better, thank you. I feel a little sheepish about so openly announcing that I was having a rough patch, because I felt like I needed to reassure people who I know had read what I wrote. Don't know if I'll do that again! Sometimes, probably like most of you, I have days when I think, "I don't think I can get up tomorrow and do it all again.". And sometimes, those days come in two's or three's. But, God is faithful. He gives strength and lifts spirits and the low times pass.

Here's the verse I am meditating on lately:

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33

I hope you all have a blessed Monday!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

One of Those Weeks...

I hesitated to write this, partly because I don't want to be a whiner, and partly because it's humbling. But I'm going to write it anyway, because it's true and I covet your prayers. Today--and this week, really--I am struggling. I feel overwhelmed, tired, anxious, and blue. Quite a confession to put out in the open, I know. If you think of it, please pray for me--I want to keep my eyes on Christ and rest in Him.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Why Ten-Year-Old Boys Should Not Be Allowed Near Dollhouses

While Annes prepares her meals-on-wheels, and Grandma naps on the couch with the cardboard
ipod-t.v. blaring, something frightening is transpiring upstairs....

No, it's not a lone Hot Tamale candy....but something much more sinister: a stack of Lego dynamite! Daddy has really lost his marbles. Look at the gleeful look on his face! It's sick.

Let's just all hope that the bomb squad arrived in time.

One Dip or Two?

"Weekend at Bernies is a hilarious comedy from the 1980s about a couple of bumbling fools who try using charm to ingratiate themselves into power and get in way over their heads. Instead of dealing with the crisis rationally, the two try fooling everyone around them into thinking that the corpse is having the time of its life, and fooling themselves that their plans are working. The only difference between the movie and real life is that no one in the film ever noticed the stench. Unfortunately for Biden and Obama, the stench has become too obvious."


Thursday, September 09, 2010


“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket--safe, dark, motionless, airless--it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.” -C.S. Lewis

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Anger, Part II

Here is the rest of the list I began earlier of 25 ways parents can provoke their children to anger, taken from Lou Priolo's book. I'm still chewing on this book, but plan to read it again with Kevin so we can discuss it. It is very practical and everything is based on the Word of God.

Each of these 25 reasons are followed with scripture references, by the way; I'm just too lazy to type them all out. If you are at all interested in this subject, I highly recommend that you get a copy of this book for yourself

15. Not Praising or Encouraging Your Child

16. Failing to Keep Your Promises

17. Chastening in Front of Others

18. Not Allowing Enough Freedom

19. Allowing Too Much Freedom

20. Mocking Your Child

21. Abusing Them Physically

22. Ridiculing or Name Calling

23. Unrealistic Expectations

24. Practicing Favoritism

25. Child Training with Worldly Methodologies Inconsistent with God's Word

-from The Heart of Anger, by Lou Priolo, pp 30-51

Wow. That's quite a lot to consider. I think this is such an important place to begin helping my angry child--with myself! The book follows this somewhat overwhelming list with another very helpful (and hopeful) list.

Repenting from Provoking Children to Anger

1. Identify the specific ways you have been provoking your child to anger: Read Ephesians 6:4

2. Confess these sins to God: Read 1 John 1:9

3. Ask your child's forgiveness for your sins against him: Read Acts 24:16,
review point #9 of this chapter

4. Develop a plan with your child's assistance to replace those sinful behaviors with their biblical
alternatives: Read Proverbs 28:13

5. Consider specific ways you can provoke your children to love and good works:
Read Hebrews 10:24
-page 51

Training, teaching, and loving my children is such a big job, such a hard job at times, but what a gift and privilege it is! I'm pressing on...

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Married Ladies, Start Your Printers!

Put about 20 pieces of paper in your printer, and go download and print this free e-book by Aileen Challies. Newly married or 'old marrieds', we need to constantly examine our attitudes about sex (I know I do!). It won't take much time to read, and I know it will encourage you as it did me.

Sam Dancing

We, here at the Dennis house, think that Sam's dancing is pretty cute. He clasps his hands together and wiggles his wrists back and forth. Here, he adds in some bouncing, since he's on the bed.

Friday, September 03, 2010


The whole, silly truth, out of the mouth of a cartoon character.

Fashion isn't about what YOU like. It's about what OTHER people like!
-Carolina from "Martha Speaks"

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Back Again...

That was quite an abrupt ending last time! Sorry! Thankfully, Annesley is back to her funny little self, and whatever was causing her fever is gone.

I won't be taking the time to finish sharing what I've been reading about anger right now, but to request prayers from you all.

Go here to learn about our friends Heather and Michael's frightening news about their baby, and please pray for that family and for little Laura.