Tuesday, January 7, 2014

"I Can Do It Myself!!!"

My two main goals for this year are:

1. Live Simplified - Seeking God's guidance to help me to focus on what He wants me to be and do and nothing more.

I know the reason for most of my worries and overwhelmed feelings is because I took on burdens last year that my Heavenly Father never asked me to carry.

2. Live Spirit-filled by God's Grace - I've been trying to do everything in my own strength and wisdom. I was even trying to be Spirit-filled in my own strength - bad idea!

My Father is FAITHFUL to help me do what He asks me to do. When I strive to do things in my own way and my own strength, I can picture God waiting patiently for me to look up and ask for help and guidance. Just like I watch (not so patiently) as my frustrated toddler tries to do even small tasks she is incapable of such as tie her shoes.  God loves us the same whether we are wearing velcro or if we get help with tasks we can't do. Why do we continue to struggle on our own?

What do you want to do or be in 2014? How are you going to seek God's strength and direction?

Monday, February 4, 2013

I Just Have to Teach ONE Thing! - FREE February Download

As parents, we are going to make mistakes.
 I get overwhelmed when I think about all the things that I need to teach my kids before they head out into the mean world.

I have to remind myself, that I am not in this alone. My Heavenly Father's burden is light (Matthew 11:30).

All Christ asks me to do is seek Him for strength and direction as I teach my kids the Two Greatest Commandments - to Love God and Love Others. (Matthew 22:37-40) "..on these two commandments rest all the Law and the Prophets."

So, really there is only ONE thing that I need to teach my kids - LOVE
One of the best and easiest ways to teach our kids to love others, is to LOVE them.

Dr. James Dobson encourages me with these words, "A relationship that is characterized by genuine LOVE and affection is likely to be a healthy one, even though some parental mistakes and errors are inevitable."

So, this Valentine's Day, go love your family well!
Find more great ideas for teaching love by getting my FREE DOWNLOAD on LOVE at TheCharacterMom.com .

Monday, January 21, 2013

I'm Out of Thyme! - Over-scheduled and Overwhelmed

I was making the best and easiest Chicken Pot Pie recipe for dinner,
but I couldn't find the fanciest of the six simple ingredients (recipe below).   

As I said to myself, "Oh no, I am out of thyme!" I realized that this was true not just literally, but also metaphorically. Lately, I was constantly out of TIME.

I was overscheduled and overwhelmed. Something was going to have to give.

As moms, it is sometimes hard to figure out what has made our lives become unbalanced. You may have to do some serious soul searching, ask your children, or even make a time journal.

However, I had no trouble figuring out what part of my life was causing the problems. 

Was I spending too much time making meals from scratch, instead of convenience foods like the recipe above? (My friends and family are all laughing) No, this pot pie is honestly one of the fanciest dinners I make. 

My family did not even notice when I just left the thyme out of this pot pie, but when I didn't have real TIME for my family, it could not go unnoticed.  My girls were continually clear about where they thought I spent too much time, "Awwwwwww, Mom, are you on the computer again?"

There are many great and good things to spend your time doing. Helping moms teach their kids character is a great and even Biblical. However, this does not mean that God wants me to do it right now - especially if it takes time away from my main priorities. 

So in light of this revelation, this year, I am cutting way back on my blogging and business. Hopefully the free monthly downloads on my site will give you all you need to continue to grow character in your family. To get the very few "Teachable MOMents" that I continue to  write delivered right to your e-mail, subscribe by clicking on the cute frame at the top of my website TheCharacterMom.com.
In the meantime, continue to use simple life object lessons to teach your kids character.  For example, as you make this pot pie with the ingredient THYME, talk about time management. If we use the wrong amount of time on wrong things, our life won't turn out right.  Too much thyme in this pie, or any thyme in a cherry pie would make them both turn out bad. This recipe makes two. One to eat, and perfect for all-in-one meal to take to a needy family or new mom – a great use of your time.

                                                  Easy Chicken Pot Pie Recipe 
Mix below ingredients and spoon into thawed deep-dish store-bought pie crusts (Makes two pies):
    1 can Great Value Bacon and Potato Soup (or 2 small cream of potato)
    2 cups of cooked diced chicken (I usually use canned chicken)
    1 can (15 oz) of mixed veggies drained (like Veg-All)
    ½ cup of milk
    Pepper to taste
    ½ teaspoon THYME (optional)     
Cook in pre-heated oven at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.  Cool at least 5 minutes before serving.    

What areas in your life need better time management?  Is there some area that God is leading you to get rid of or scale way back?

Sunday, December 30, 2012


Go to TheCharacterMom.com
to get FREE 3 page Download
Happy New Year!

I love New Years because it is a wonderful time to start FRESH.
It doesn't matter how bad we messed up in 2012. That is all behind us now.
Tell God (and whoever else you need to) you are sorry, and you are ready to do better.
It is now time for the new you that is FAITHFUL in all things. You can do all things through Christ!

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.
 The old has passed away; behold, the new has come!" - II Corinthians 5:17

This month's character focus is on FAITHFULNESS.

Go to TheCharacterMom.com to get your FREE 3 page download packed full of family traditions, stories, snacks, Scriptures, activities, and more.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from the Character Mom and family!
I am taking a break from the computer to celebrate this wonderful season with my family.
Let me encourage you to do the same and to remember to
keep Christ in Christmas as you celebrate!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Our Favorite Christmas Tradition! - FREE advent activity calendar

Christmas can be overwhelming! Don't go crazy trying to do every activity under the sun with your kids. Just pick a few of your favorites and make them memorable.

The best traditions are fun, simple, purposeful and can be enjoyed by kids of all ages year after year.

My kid's favorite is the Advent Box because daily they get to open a little door that reveals a tiny surprise!

(It's not too late to start, you may find advent boxes on sale at this time of year:))

I love it because it helps me to remember to do something simple daily to prepare my children and my own heart to be loving, kind, and generous during the Christmas season.

My sister makes her Advent Box super simple by just putting candy (Ande's mints are my favorite) in every box and using that moment to talk about the wonders of Christmas.

Since this is the main tradition we have, I have tried to make our Advent Box a little more purposeful by filling each box with an item that leads us to an activity or object that teaches us more about the reason for the season - Christ!

All I did was look for tiny Christmas objects that I already had or were easy to purchase (check out oriental trading) such as magnets, felt crafts, tiny ornaments, or printable cutouts off Pinterest. Then thought about what we can learn from these objects.

For example:
  1. Stars/Candle - Daniel 12:3 - Shine for Jesus! Go star gazing.
  2. Coin - Acts 20:35 - Is Christmas all about money? It is more blessed to give than to receive.
  3. Bells -  Psalm 95: 2 - Make a joyful noise with music and praise! Play musical chairs.
  4. Angel - Luke 2:14 - Messenger of God. Make an angel craft.
  5. Wisemen (and any or all of their gifts) - Matt. 2:1-12 - Wisemen still seek Him. Scavenger Hunt.
  6. Heart - John 3:16 - For God so loved the world...
  7. Cross - John 3:16 - What does the cross have to do with Christmas?
  8. Candy Cane - Luke 2:8 - What can we learn from Shepherds? Pretend play shepherd and sheep.
  9. Tiny Present - John 10:10 &11 - What is the best gift anyone has ever gotten?
  10. Tiny manger or basket - Luke 2:1-20 - Place baby doll in empty basket or manger that has been under the tree since beginning of December.

You get the idea. I think you can take it from here. Get creative. Make it personal with photos of your family or homemade items by your kids.  Let the kids come up with things to put in the boxes, or see the free advent calendar below for more ideas.

Get a free advent calendar from ThrivingFamily.com http://www.thrivingfamily.com/free/advent.aspx

What is one of your family's favorite Christmas traditions?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

$100 to Your Charity of Choice - Encouraging Character

We have so very much to be thankful for and to give to others. Sometimes during the holidays we get too busy with our own families to reach out to others, or sometimes we just can't think of a good family-friendly place to help.

This season, I would like to offer you a little incentive to share your ideas of how you get your family involved in showing God's love and generosity during the holidays.

I am going to mail a $100 check to someone made out to their favorite charity! It could be you!

All you have to do for your chance to win is:
1. Go to the comment section on my website (TheCharacterMom.com) within the next two weeks.
2. Post a picture of your child or the charity that your family likes to help with or give to.
3. Write a brief comment explaining why or how you like to help this charity.

Deadline for posting is Wednesday, Dec. 4.
I will announce the winner on Monday, Dec. 10th!
(You will have until the following Monday to claim your prize.)

I have posted the first one to give you an example. Watch a short video about the Kingdom Kids Christmas where my family and I have already given to this year.
Thanks for sharing about how you like to share God's love in a practical way during the holidays!