Saturday, January 31, 2009
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have."
Monday, January 26, 2009
Well, I hope she likes pink, because that's what she's getting. Pink and Butterflies. We just updated the room with some lettering (inspired by our good friends, The Bryans). She's due March 30 and we'll probably have her
early. Only 6-8 more weeks and we'll bring our little girl home! Can't wait. She's kicking like crazy already.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
My boys are earning money every week through doing jobs rather than just getting an allowance. They are learning not only the importance of work, but also the importance of how to handle their money. For the most part, it works. Some days, they are naturally more lazy, but they quickly get motivated again the next day when I remind them of their goal. We learned this plan largely from Dave Ramsey - though we modified it a bit to suit our family dynamic.
OK, here's how it works. Pick 5 jobs for your child to do each day. Each job has a potential value of 10 points. If they do the job exceptionally well and efficiently with no whining, they get 10 points for that job. If the job is done satisfactory, but they whined about doing it, they might only get 5 points. If they didn't do a good job and they complained about it, but they got it done eventually, you might only want to give your child 1 point. Much of the point value for each job is up to your descretion. As they get older, you might want to make the jobs more difficult. Start them easy - at age 5 - and then increase the difficulty every 1 or 2 years.
When your child has finished his or her jobs for the day, tally the points at the bottom of that day. Do this each day for 5 or 6 days (Mon - Sat) depending on your schedule. At the end of the week you get to do PAY DAY. On Pay Day, you tally the points for the week. It's up to you how you want to break out the points. I suggest something like this:
10 points is worth $1.00. Then, count up by 5 points from there. For example, if they earn 47 points for the week, they earn $4.50. Does that make sense? I don't recommend breaking it down any further than that or else it will be too complicated with nickels and dimes. Keep it to dollar bills and quarters.
VERY IMPORTANT: Ask your child to set a goal as to what they are going to do with their money. They have a savings goal and a giving goal. They give about 10% each week to good causes - whether it be a non-profit, ministry or church. My boys have a goal to save $60 each by the end of March. They are each saving for a new Wii Game. Kaden is getting even more aggressive - he says he's already saving for a car - he has 9 more years before he starts driving, but hey, who am I to argue!?
Hope it works well for you!
Monday, January 19, 2009
Thank you, Mr. President, for doing what you thought was best for our nation. Thank you for serving our country and taking a back seat to your own interests. We may never know all of the ways you protected us from harm. We are forever grateful for your leadership after 9/11. While I didn't always agree with your decisions, I'm sure you did the best you knew how. You leave office with very few regrets. Happy Retirement, Mr. President! Thank you for serving me, my family and my country so well.
Monday, January 12, 2009
The great debate around our house these days is the correct pronunciation of the word "syrup". Krissy comes from Michigan where they pronounce it "sir-rup". I come from New Jersey, where we pronounce it "see-rup". Kaden takes his mommy's side. Alex takes his daddy's side. We tried to end the argument by calling a famous pancake place here in Nashville, The Pancake Pantry. Unfortunately, they haven't seen the light yet and pronounce it "sir-rup". That was a few months ago. I sort of conceded, but also with the understanding that here in the south, they probably pronounce it that way because it's easier and less proper.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Friday, January 9, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Kaden and his mommy were talking in the minivan over the Christmas break. He was making a mess in the car. Krissy was getting upset with him and asked him if he would clean it up. He said he would. Krissy, asked him again if would really do it, because he has a habit of not doing things we ask him to do. He said, "I promise, Mommy, middle finger promise."
I was out with a business account last night from the UK. He is the Managing Director of a major Christian media company there. He is younger than me and very sharp. He shared something with me that I won't forget.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
"A man can receive only what is given him from heaven." - John 3:27
David understood this principle. When he was preparing to furnish the temple, he told God in his prayer, "Everything comes from You, and we have given You only what comes from Your hand" (1 Chron. 29:14b).
Monday, January 5, 2009
"The Hebrews knew that failure was a part of maturing in God. The Greeks used failure as a reason for disqualification. Sadly, in the Church, we often treat one another in this way. This is not God's way. We need to understand that failing does not make us failures. It makes us experienced. It makes us more prepared to be useful in God's Kingdom—if we have learned from it. And that is the most important ingredient for what God wants in His children." - Os Hillman
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Tim Keller opens up a new way of looking at the story of the Prodigal Son. He opens up many new aspects of Jesus' parable that I hadn't thought of before. A must read to more fully understand the heart of God.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
Another excellent devotional reading from Os Hillman - TGIF...
Abraham took a totally different approach to solving this problem. He told Lot to choose which land he wanted. Imagine, Abraham could have been dooming himself and his family if he was unable to find adequate land and water for them. He gave up his rights in the matter, and Lot took full advantage. "Lot looked up and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan was well watered, like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, toward Zoar" (Gen. 13:10). So Lot left and took up residence in the valley later to be known as Sodom and Gomorrah. Sometimes what seems good on the front end turns out to be disastrous later. Such would be the case for Lot and his family.
As for Abraham, he made a choice. He decided to take life's high road—a choice that didn't necessarily mean his life circumstances would benefit him. He was willing to leave that outcome to God. He made the decision based on an eternal measuring stick. Interestingly, the place where Abraham moved was called Mamre. In Hebrew, the name Mamre means "strength." How can choosing the weakest position become "strength"? Jesus must have asked the same question of His Father when faced with the proposition of going to the cross. How can the cross be a place of strength? The devil thought he had won, but the cross is what freed the captives for eternity. The Bible tells us that when we are weak, then we are really strong. To willingly choose the way of the cross becomes our strength.