4 Moms try to get their 37 children to church on time


This has been an unusual week already and it doesn’t promise to get better.  I am not comfortable going into details right now, but I am severely depleted on local help, I was plumb out of computers for a period of time, and there is a family crisis of unknown proportions currently in progress.

For that reason, my 4 Moms post this week will be very brief and possibly very scatterbrained.  You be the judge, and feel free to entertain each other with clever repartee at my expense if it amuses you.  I’m sure it will amuse me.

We are supposed to talk about getting the bigger-than-average family to church on time this week, and I’m the last person you should ask for advice on that subject.  But I’m sure that won’t stop you – after all, you’ve asked me about potty training and I can count on one hand how many times my nearly-3yo has used the toilet.  I could probably count on one finger.  Checking…yup.  One finger does it.

But because I have a very good excuse for being a slacker this week, I’m sharing another audio post.  This one is not nearly so long or well thought out as the first.  It’s more of a 5 minute braindump, which will give you a good idea of what it sounds like inside my head right before I sit down to write a post.  Aren’t you glad I spend plenty of time editing?


And for those who can’t find time to sit still for 5 minutes or can’t find enough silence to actually hear 5 minutes of audio – believe me, I’m right there with you! – here’s my post in a nutshell:

The size of the family has very little to do with whether you are on time for church or late.  It may exacerbate the problem, but it is entirely possible to be on time with a large family, just as it is entirely possible to be late with no children at all.

Your ability to plan ahead and execute those plans has much to do with it.  Listen to the audio for a few of my best tips and dirty secrets.  You probably know without listening that we are not always on time, but we aspire to do better and we are improving.

The other moms:

Upcoming topics:

  • March 31 – Q and A (leave your question here)

Recent topics:

  • March 17 – Bread baking linky
  • March 10 – Spring cleaning
  • March 3 – Books for early readers
  • February 24 – 4 Moms Q&A: my first audio blog on potty training and more
  • February 17 – Individual time with children: scary stuff here.  Just kidding.  Let go of the guilt.
  • February 10Cooking with little ones without losing your sanity
  • February 3 –Teaching reading, because it’s so much easier than teaching them to use the toilet.  Do not request a 4 Moms post about potty training, do you hear me?
  • January 27 – Q&A: Must-have baby equipment and other nitty gritty stuff
  • January 20 – Top 10 Books for Preschoolers
  • January 13 – Soups and Stews
  • January 6 – Teaching Bible
  • Comments

    1. Melinda - Aussie Gal says:

      Loved this post, first time I’ve commented because I’m a ‘newbie’ to this wonderfully, blessed site.

      We have only 2 children (they’re now 10 & 12) so I couldn’t even begin to envisage how Mums of 3 & beyond manage – “To get me to the church on Time!”

      This hint only works if you are planning to move house.
      Guess what we did – we moved around the corner from our church when our kids were 5 & 7!

      And boy, does that make a difference to everyone else’s Responsibilities…………

      When our children were newborn/toddlers, everyone’s clothes were hung in readiness, bags packed – the night before & husband organised…………..

      Furtheremore, I believed in getting to church 15 minutes before the service begins so ‘everyone’ can have some quiet time in readiness for the service.

      Lastly – Sneaky hint – I have all our clocks running 5-10 minutes fast!

    2. I read this this morning, but didn’t comment. Praying for you and your family. We have a God who knows our situation and can compassionately relate. To Him be the Glory! I’ll be continuing to lift you and your family and this situation up to the Father of Lights.


      (wanted to leave this link. I hope it is an encouragement and a blessing to someone)


    3. I think the sentence you said toward the end of your post “I have good kids and I like them.” sums up what is really important. Confession: More than once we have all got ready for church and the last sprint simply took TOO LONG so we have chosen to go and visit someone after church for fellowship rather than show up at church ten minutes after the sermon started. We try and sometimes fail but the next week we try again and I think that’s what counts.

    4. Hugs and prayers sent your way Kim!!!

    5. Kim-
      Thanks for your post despite all you are going through! I will be praying for you and your family during this time!

    6. Ashley G. says:

      Delurking to let you know that I’ll be praying for you!

      • Thank you everyone for the prayers. God is wrapping up our days into rather neat and tidy packages, making our path clear and reminding me that He is in control even during the difficult times.
        I’ll post an update and explanation as soon as I have wrapped my mind around things.

    7. Oh Kim,

      So sorry to hear about all the difficulties you are having. “A family crisis of unknown proportions currently in progress” brings up some very specific memories for me. I will be praying for you and your family. If you ever feel comfortable sharing more, I am sure there are several of us who would love to pray specifically.


    8. Cindy in GA says:

      O.K., I haven’t listened to the audio message, but I want to send a hug your way! Here: ((((Kim))))

      I’m sorry things are rough right now. I’ll pray for your family. Wish I could do more. Hang in there.

    9. Lisa Granger says:

      Kim, I just wanted to comment to let you know that you’re in my thoughts, I sincerely hope everything is OK.

      I don’t go to church nor do I have any children, but I know as a child, my mother’s solution was to go to evening services when we were small (usually Saturday evening, but sometimes Sunday). That way we literally had “all day” to get ready and my sis and I were always happy to do so because my grandparents went to Saturday evening mass, so church then meant we got to spend extra time with them (and get dinner together after).

      Once we were older (as in both school age and already used to getting up early and getting dressed for school) my mom and dad would let us pick if we wanted to go to Saturday evening or Sunday morning mass (so basically we chose between going out to do something fun on Saturday night and sleeping in on Sunday morning!) We both had to agree and all bets were off if my Dad had to work late on Saturday or early on Sunday (my parents liked us to go to church as a family when it was possible).

      That worked really well for us, but if your church doesn’t do evening mass and if there are more than 2 kids of various ages I can see how it wouldn’t work as well (or at all).

    10. My Boaz's Ruth says:

      *hugs* and prayers.

    11. I am another lurker who loves to read your blog but doesn’t comment much. Hope that everything will turn out alright for you and your family. Prayers and ((hugs)) sent your way! Also on the subject of getting kids to church on time I have to laugh. We all have our moments where we do well and then those other moments. But on a good weekend I had a lady at church ask how I managed to get myself and 5 children to church on time while my husband was serving overseas. I had to laugh because she made it sound like I had to dress each child and everything! At the time I had 4 school age children and one baby so it really wasn’t too hard as long as I was organized the night before, but if I forgot to prepare……CHAOS! LOL.

    12. Sending *HUGS*! I don’t know what’s going on in your life right now but I hope it takes a turn for the better ASAP!
      I’m one of those people that always seems to be late (okay not *late* late but if it starts at 9am I pull in the parking lot at 8:59am) no matter how many hours in advance I start. Somehow something crazy always happens like baby diaper explosions 2 secons after I get her buckled in. :p

    13. Yes, being on church Sunday morning means better planning Saturday night!! (some weeks this happens, other weeks….)

      Back in the days when we were attending a large church and we “only” had 3 kids, a lady mentioned how hard it had been to get her ONE child to church on time (she’d walked in late). At the time, I had a 5yo in a wheelchair, a 3yo, a 1yo, I was violently sick with my fourth pregnancy and my husband was gone for the weekend. So I just smiled at her 🙂

      You’re absolutely right – being on time isn’t affected by the number of kids you have – it depends on how much effort and planning Mom puts into it.

    14. This has been my absolutely favorite 4 Moms topic. It is sooo very relevant to our family of 11. I do totally agree with you that it has nothing to do with the size of the family as I have been consistently 10-15 minutes late since before we had children. There have been the occasional weeks of being on time, but they’re rare. Letting the kids sleep in their church clothes was a new one, and I did get a good chuckle out of it. I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of it before! lol Thanks for being so open with how your Sunday mornings go. It made me smile. (And I’m right there with you and your unusual week. My older kids keep disappearing leaving me wondering how I managed my days when all the children were small! lol)

    15. I empathize with the week you are having. I am praying for you and your family as you deal with it all.

    16. Don’t know what’s up but coming out of lurkdom to tell you I’m praying here in New Orleans!

    17. Thank you for saying Deanna’s name. I’ve wondered how you all pronouced it.

      Praying for you, too.

    18. Shannon M says:

      I am loving that you admitted to putting your kids to bed already dressed for the next day! Now I don’t feel so silly that I have been known to do that as well… I am actually wondering why we don’t do it more often! For that matter I am starting to wonder if I should do it myself!! 😉

      Praying for you, too


    19. Praying for you guys.
      Love, Melanie

    Don't just think it: say it!

    %d bloggers like this: