Tagged with "change"
Welcome to Your New Normal Tags: change normal stress



I liked my old normal!

Change is not one of my favorite things.

Many of you know that my son got married and moved out to live with his new bride. She's great and it's a good thing.

My doctor reminded me that even good things can cause stress. I've certainly managed to prove that this summer.

What does your new normal include?

  • A child off to college?
  • Or a marriage like me?
  • Starting to homeschool?
  • Adding another child to your homeschool?
  • Sending a child off to a school after homeschooling?
  • Job change?
  • Move?
  • Empty nest?
  • New baby?
  • Puppy?

See, even good things cause stress.

That's why we need to build our homes on the Lord. If we build on sand changes will come and our homes will fall.

"And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it." Mat 7:26-27 ESV

No change is not easy, but with the Lord, we are able to adjust and continue to lean on Him.

"I the LORD do not change." Mal. 3:6

What change are you dealing with now? Please share it in the comments, or email me privately so we can pray for you.

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Finding Contentment In The Midst Of Change Tags: change contented cpntentment

I think of myself as a contented person. In fact, change is often the last thing Im looking for. Im doing what Ive always wanted to do being a wife, mother, grandmother, and writer.

As a new believer these things were just dreams. I was a single mom working several jobs to make ends meet. I had no idea what the Lords plans for me were, only that he was helping me face my past and healing me in the process.

Contentment in the Midst of change

Write the Vision

Every day was a new journey for me as the Lord cleaned me up and set me on the right path. Everything in my life was changing faster than I could have ever imagined.

  • Old friends thought I was losing my mind.

  • Myfiancetold me he would leave me if I went to church on Christmas Eve and he did.

  • I was making new friends.

  • Iwas facing my fears.

And now I thought I knew contentment. I would have liked to stop the clock and just stay here, but that isnt an option.

  • Im getting older.

  • Our children are grown up and they need me in different ways now.

  • My husband and I are discussing retirement and all the changes and possibilities that will open up.

Now, Im working to find contentment in the midst of change.

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.Philippians 4:12-13 NIV

I find myself needing to learn contentment all over again.

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Dan's Doodles a coloring book for all ages.

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How to Learn a Foreign Language Tags: Foreign Language High School Exchange Student

Twenty-seven years ago, I was living in Zaragoza, Spain as a 16-year-old exchange student. I left my home in the fall of 1985 to live abroad in order to learn a foreign language. I had studied the language for four years by the time I arrived in Spain, but I could not actually say anything when I arrived. The group of students I was with spent three weeks touring Madrid and taking crash courses in Spanish before we were turned over to our own host families. After living with my host family for one month, they finally deemed me fluent enough to take the bus to a local store on my own. By January of 1986, the locals were mistaking me as the child of one of the American serviceman from the base stationed near the city. (I have a very pale Irish complexion, so they knew I wasn't a native. But, my speech sounded so accurate that they assumed I must have grown up there.)

Learning a foreign language was one of the best skills and experiences I have ever acquired. Not only did it help me to improve my vocabulary (and thus my SAT score for college), but it also helped me to understand that there was more to the world than just my own country and customs. It has opened up the door for me to become an ESL instructor as well as a local (and long-distance) tutor for homeschooled students. Having my own experience in learning a foreign language helps me to better understand the difficulties my own students face when studying English or Spanish. Lastly, it has increased my ability to communicate with others in our increasing bilingual country.

If you're considering having your child learn a foreign language, the very best method is total immersion. By total immersion, I mean actually living in a foreign country surrounded by foreign speakers with little or no access to your native language. For those that might actually be considering this, my husband has written a lovely article summarizing my advice for Yahoo. Click here to read my advice. (http://voices.yahoo.com/20-things-every-future-foreign-exchange-student-should-5108391.html)

For most families, however, sending a child abroad is not an option that's easily attained. Many families think that the next best option is the ever-popular computer programs such as Rosetta Stone or CDs such as Berlitz or Pimsleur. While these programs are not bad, they often focus on speaking and pronunciation with almost no attention to grammar concepts. Students memorize a ton of vocabulary words and hundreds of phrases but have no idea how to take those phrases and words apart and use them to form their own thoughts.

After encountering this dilemma over and over in the support group that we led, I finally decided to being teaching classes in Spanish. What I quickly learned was that if I taught my students the ins and outs of grammar rules and then helped them use them, they quickly became confident in tackling the translation of any passage as long as they had a decent dictionary and a verb book. After just one year of instruction, they were comfortable with the idea of composing their own paragraphs and reading them aloud in class. By the middle of their second year of Spanish, students were also able to listen to and understand basic podcasts as long as they could see the text as they listened.

Over and over, parents would comment on how their students had made so much more progress in my class than they had using the computer programs. (One parent even suggested I contact one the above-mentioned companies and offer to rewrite its curriculum! I graciously thanked her for her compliment, but chose not to follow through on her suggestion.)

Thus, I have come to the conclusion that if you're planning to have your child study a foreign language, the most important component of the foreign language program is how well it teaches grammar. A student with a good grasp of grammar can read and write a language quite easily. Moving from those skills to speaking is also easy to do at that point simply by finding ways to immerse yourself in the language (i.e. visiting another country, taking a conversational class, attending a foreign language church, etc.)

Ellen Gerwitz

P.S. If you're interested my program, I have recently taken my notes and expanded them into a textbook. I've followed the style of Charlotte Mason and Apologia and written it as if I were speaking directly to a student. My textbook assumes that neither the student nor the parent have any knowledge of Spanish. However, it would also be suitable for a student who has used a computer program, but needs grammar instruction.

Sample copies of the first two lessons will be available as of January 7th, 2013 on our website: www.honourofkings.com. The entire Spanish I textbook and answer key will be available for sale as PDF books via the same website for $25 (includes both books) on January 7th, 2013 as well. These PDF books work great on tablets and computers and e-readers. The books are non-consumable, so they can be used over and over for all your students.

I'm also looking for families with high-school students who would be willing to test four weeks of the curriculum and write a review.

Lastly, I'm offering a new service of distance-learning Jr. and Sr. high-school level Spanish classes. Each session will last 27 weeks and cover an entire school year's worth of material. For a rate of $5 per week ($150 total per student - price includes the textbook), students will receive individual corrections of all weekly homework assignments as well as grading of all tests. Students and parents are welcome to ask questions at any time throughout the course. Parents will receive quarterly and final grades for each student enrolled. This session will run from Feb to August 2013. Thereafter, sessions will run from mid-September to late May (following the school year and including breaks). If you're interested in this program, sign up begins January 7th via our website and continues until January 26th, 2013. (www.honourofkings.com)


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