Updated: Aug 2, 2019
As I have re-read a book this week on home atmospheres I thought a lot about home life. Homeschooling and homemaking go hand in hand. Have you noticed that? It's almost impossible to home teach in an environment that is hectic, cluttered, unorganized and contentious.
A few "rules" will guide us!
Father and mother and king and queen, and rule with kindness
I have often heard Karen Andreola, author of many Charlotte Mason books and the pioneer of the Charlotte Mason movement say,"Mother is queen and father is king". Those statements have really stuck with me for many years. Being queen is a responsible job, we rule with kindness.
I believe this mentality can change the way you are as a mother/parent. Think of a fair/kind Queen or king. In my mind, Jesus comes to mind! The most kind/fair/just/loving king there is. In our homes we are to "rule" that way. When the king (your husband) is away, you are in charge. YOUR word needs to be obeyed. When children learn to respect and obey mother and father, they will grow to respect and obey the King of Kings. Learning respect in the home at an early age will be reflective in their lives as they grow. Respectful children become respectful adults.
Brothers and sisters are best friends
If left to themselves my children would constantly critic and nag one another. I have taught my oldest children to be careful of this, but my younger ones are still being trained. I have to remind them sometimes, " You two are best friends", I will say. They look at each other with new eyes when I say that. "How do best friends treat each other?" With kindness is the answer. Homeschooled children are in a different environment that some of us didn't grow up in. I was never with my two brothers constantly like my children are. I believe homeschooled children are at a big advantage. They are given the gift of relationships and given gifts of time. During these years of being all together, encourage your children to be best friends. How sweet is this gift from the Father above...to give our children true friends.
Love is the theme of our home
All homes have a theme whether we are aware of it or not. Growing up in a minister's home I often went with him on "visitation". I was the guest of my homes and I remember recognizing the atmosphere of certain homes. Sometimes the home theme was money, sometimes the theme was laziness. Sadly, sometimes the theme was depression and hopelessness. Other times the theme was joy and order. No matter what we believe about our homes, the theme should be love! Christ loves us and died for us! We should be filled with love and thankfulness! I want our home to a place of love, hope, forgiveness and dreams.
Never allow an opportunity to be kind pass by
Training our children to look for opportunities to be kind will radically change the way our homes function and serve them the rest of their days. Kindness can be displayed in so many areas! I have trained my children to never pass by garage on the ground without picking it up, always leave an area looking better than they found it, eagerly help a hurting person, love people right where they are without hesitation, serve your siblings, and remember that we share our home with many people so be considerate of the state of your belongings.
This week I thought, " I'd like to make a list of these rules that we live by". I sat down to create this list and put it up on our refrigerator.
The next morning during our "morning time" I had two children that needed the reminder not to constantly critic one another...
Having this reminder on our wall is a place to point when the "rules" are broken. These rules are not just for my children, they are for me. "I rule with kindness..." is my mantra.