Reasons to get married and have kids young

Years ago, I wrote a lighthearted response to a popular list of reasons not to have children.  Mine was, of course, 100+ Reasons to Have Children.

Here is another article I wish I had written.  I don’t know anything about this guy or his blog, but I love 9 of his Ten Darn Good Reasons to Get Married and Have Kids Young.  I like most of his reasons so much that I can’t pick just one to quote as an example.  Just go read it.  Then come back and tell me what you think.

Could you add to the list?  Can you guess which point I don’t like?

 

When Motherhood seems too hard

I gave Kelly’s new ebook a plug on Facebook when she released it yesterday, but Perry called from work this morning to gently admonish me.  He reminded me how eagerly many of you received my Life With Littles and encouragement For Tired Young Mothers of Many posts.  ”Don’t you think Kelly’s book would strike a chord with your blog readers?”

I think he was right.  He usually is.

Kelly Crawford of Generation Cedar has a new ebook for moms, and the title alone is perfect: Devotions, Advice & Renewal for When Motherhood Feels Too Hard.  Isn’t that every day?

When Motherhood Feels Too Hard is the daily inspiration you need to not just get through a day, but to FLOURISH as a mother, to build a home, and to ignite a passion in your children that will impact the next generation for the glory of God!

If the title wasn’t enough, I would be totally sold on Jennie Chancey’s review:

“This eBook is Kelly’s “cup of cold water” to mothers. We all need refreshment and encouragement when the hard days come, and Kelly has provided bite-sized (but meaty and thought-provoking) daily devotionals that urge us to take our calling as mothers seriously but remember at the same time that we are vessels of clay in need of God’s filling. These words are true whether you are the mother of one or the mother of ten! Thank you, Kelly, for sharing your beautiful insights into the calling of motherhood “from the trenches!” -Jennie Chancey, Ladies Against Feminism

When Motherhood Feels Too Hard is available as an instant download (PDF) or for your Kindle.  I’ll be starting my copy very soon.  Anyone want to join me?

 

Helping our Christian brethren

Recognizing that each family has different priorities, there are 3 fundraisers that we would like to tell you about today.  Each is for a cause that, we think, seeks to glorify God and further His kingdom.  Please consider giving to one or more and also passing the information via social media.  We make it easy for you with social media buttons at the bottom, but if you click through, all 3 have buttons to allow you to share directly from their sites. Passing word along via your social network will help each of these different efforts to meet their goal!

Honor WWII Veterans

Events for 2011

One of Vision Forum’s core principles is teaching people to obey the 5th commandment by honoring their parents.  That is the driving force behind their upcoming Normandy project, A Final Farewell to WWII’s Last Living Heroes.

As of right now they are 67% funded. If they do not raise the entire amount by May 7, they lose all of it.


Bring Kasey home

From our online friends, the Earlywine family:

Our son Kasey, that we are adopting from an orphanage in Eastern Europe is turning 5 on Wednesday, May the 4th. Also, Sunday, May the 8th is Mother’s Day! So, in honor of both we are doing an on-line event to raise money to pay for our plane tickets to go get our son and our in country expenses. Our goal for this fundraiser is to raise $5000! Please consider helping us however you can and share this event with your family and friends!

PLEASE HELP US ENSURE THAT THIS WILL BE THE LAST BIRTHDAY OUR SON HAS TO SPEND ALONE WITHOUT A FAMILY IN AN ORPHANAGE!

Every dollar counts and gets us closer to bringing our son and one of his orphanage-mates home.
GO here to donate to our family sponsorship page: http://reecesrainbow.org/sponsorearleywine


Help Alabama families

Last but not least, the Lee, Crawford and Boyd families were devastated by the recent tornadoes which blew through the South Wednesday night. These are exemplary, faithful, Christian families who now even in their loss are responding with faith and confidence in the Lord. They need help. Currently, there are more than a hundred people physically assisting them on the ground. Now they need the funds to begin the process of rebuilding. In some cases, with only the clothes on their backs, they will be starting over and need cash for shoes, food, temporary housing, immediate medical bills and basic needs.

Tom Lee died heroically protecting his family as their home collapsed around them. In God’s Mercy his wife and thirteen children survived after many hours of being trapped under rubble. Daughters Tiffany and Emily are in the hospital and suffered potentially severe nerve damage. Their insurance does not cover these medical bills, their father is dead, and their home and possessions are gone.

The home of Aaron and Kelly Crawford (of generationcedar.com) and their nine children was completely destroyed by a tornado on Wednesday night taking all of there earthly possessions including all of their vehicles and all of Aaron’s construction tools which are his source of livelihood.

Gary and Jane Boyd and their nine children survived without injury but their home was severely damaged by trees falling on it. Their home was the rendezvous point for the Lee and Crawford families in the hours following the tornado since it was the only one left standing.

You can see videos of each family here. The Moore family is providing additional updates on relief efforts.  The donation buttons below send your money DIRECTLY to the local church, Christ Church Branch Cove, and your gift is tax deductible.

 

Giveaway: Family-building webinar

NOTE: This post as been edited to allow international readers and cutomers to enter the giveaway. Vision Forum will deliver your download – if you win or purchase -through an alternate system that BlueBehemoth.com Thanks!

Vision Forum is producing a new product that I’m really excited about.  This time I made sure to get a copy for myself when I asked to do a giveway:

Large Family Strategy Banner

Just read the titles of the 20 weekly messages by Doug and Beall Philips:

  1. How to Organize Your Home to Promote Family Unity
  2. How to Cultivate a Love of Reading with Your Children
  3. How to Make Mealtime Meaningful
  4. How to Prepare for a Year of Home Education
  5. How to Take Children Safely Through an Airport
  6. How to Involve the Whole Family in Family Worship
  7. How to Address the Plague of “Jive Talk” in Your Home
  8. How to Encourage Masculinity in Sons
  9. How to Encourage Femininity in Daughters
  10. How to Handle a Social Worker Visit
  11. How to Wage War on Sibling Rivalry
  12. How to Use Household Decorations to Teach Character
  13. How to Talk to Your Children about Miscarriage
  14. How to Involve the Whole Family in Hospitality
  15. How to Build an Entrepreneurial Spirit in Your Children
  16. How to Watch a Movie As a Family
  17. How to Cultivate a Love of Meaningful Poetry with Your Children, and Why Doing So Is Important
  18. How to Prepare Your Children to Listen to a Symphony
  19. How to Take a Road Trip with Your Family
  20. How to Select the Best Locations for Family Vacations

Can you see why I’m so excited?  It almost reads like a list of 4 Moms posts or FAQ for Families.  I’ll be the first to admit that I’m full of good intentions that fall by the wayside, but I’ve resolved that I actually will make time to listen to these, because they are so relevant to everyday life for us.

Beginning March 1, every Tuesday morning for twenty weeks you will receive a link to your new downloadable message from Doug or Beall, hosted at Vision Forum’s partner website BlueBehemoth.com.

Don’t have a free BlueBehemoth account yet?  Get one so you can take advantage of daily free downloads!

The Giveaway

These 20 weekly messages are being sold for $95.  That’s a great deal at less than $5/message, but you can save $10 by ordering before Feb. 28.  You can save another $25 by using the coupon code SAVE25 (exp. 2/28).

Or you just might get them free by entering our giveaway.

For your first entry, leave a comment telling which message from the list above you think would be most helpful to your family.  You must do this to enter.

For up to 11 additional entries, do any or all of the following and leave a separate comment for each.  Each legitimate comment will count as one entry.

  1. Post about this giveaway on facebook, twitter, and/or your blog.  Leave a separate comment here for each place you share.
  2. Share a link to your favorite product from Vision Forum on facebook, twitter, and/or your blog.  Again, leave a separate comment providing the link for each.
  3. Share your favorite Life in a Shoe post on facebook, twitter, and/or your blog.  Leave a comment telling where you shared it.
  4. Create a free account on Blue Behemoth and leave a comment here to tell me.
  5. Subscribe to Life in a Shoe and leave a comment to let me know.  If you’re already a subscriber, just leave a comment saying so.

Don’t procrastinate: Because of the time-sensitive nature of this giveaway, we’ll take entries until midnight Sunday and announce the winner on Monday, Feb. 28.  That will give the rest of you time to take advantage of the special $85 price.


Tuesday poetry (and sometimes prose): C.S. Lewis quote

Posted by : Deanna

Grrrrr…..This is a lot harder than I thought it would be.  I could claim that I was busy all last week, (which is true by the way.) but I really was just being a flake. I’m sorry.

Alrighty then. This is an excerpt from C.S Lewis’ book Mere Christianity. I have yet to read the whole thing, but I love what I have read. He has such a way of putting things that just really makes me think.

…Even the best Christian that ever lived is not acting on his own steam- he is only nourishing or protecting a life he could never have acquired by his own efforts. And that has practical consequences. As long as the natural life is in your body, it will do a lot towards repairing that body. Cut it, and up to a point it will heal, as a dead body would not. A live body is not one that never gets hurt, but one that can to some extent repair itself. In the same way, a Christian is not a man who never goes wrong, but a man who is enabled to repent and pick himself up and begin over again after each stumble- because the Christ-life is inside him, repairing him all the time, enabling him to repeat (in some degree) the kind of voluntary death which Christ himself carried out.
That is why the Christian is in a different position from other people who are trying to be good. They hope, by being good, to please God if there is one; or -if they think there is not- at least they hope to deserve approval from good men. But the Christian thinks any good he does comes from the Christ-life inside him. He does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because he loves us; just as the roof of a greenhouse does not attract the sun because it is bright, but becomes bright because the sun shines on it.

I love reading deep thoughtful stuff that he writes. I recently read “A Grief Observed”, and it really was some food for thought. I haven’t quite processed it all, and most likely I’ll read it again today or tomorrow. It was very thought provoking to read through someone else’s deep sorrow like that. I wish I could have read it when my little sister Sarah was stillborn. I think it would have helped.  Maybe next week I’ll post an excerpt from that.

A woman’s place is in the home

Well, not exactly.

I may not agree with him on everything, but I usually like what Doug Wilson has to say, and I really enjoy how he says it.  I’ll even confess to enjoying his sarcastic sense of humor.  This time is no exception.  Is it bad that I was laughing at his feminist joke even before I heard the punchline?

Giveaway: Evenings With Victoria Botkin

This giveaway is closed, and a winner has been announced here.  Thanks to all who entered!

I don’t usually let giveaways overlap, but this one is important.

My friend Victoria is a sweet and wise woman, and always reminds me of my own mother when I’m around her.  I suspect she has this effect on many women, and I’m glad to hear that she is actively mentoring young wives!

I loved her advice on how to choose a curriculum, but now she is focusing more directly on counselling a wife in her role as her husband’s helper.

From the family website, Western Conservatory:

How does a wife help her husband be the man Christ wants him to be? How can she inspire him to love her? How can she discover the forgotten joys of being the helper God designed her to be? Beginning March 1, Victoria, beloved wife to Geoffrey Botkin, will host weekly online mentoring sessions for women as a homemaker’s resource to the worldwide Christian community. Mother to five boys and two girls, Victoria draws insight from 30 years of applying Scripture to marriage with one of America’s most visionary men.

Join Victoria as she discusses subjects such as woman’s great power, sinful tendencies, obedience vs. submission, independence vs. submission, freedom vs. submission, beauty, dress, makeup, respect, women’s rights, hospitality, speaking words of life, managing with grace, pitfalls of perfectionism in homemaking, Hollywood expectations, trials, trust, and cultivating personality. Victoria will begin each session by responding to pressing, appropriate questions from participants. Topic headings include:

  • All about Eve
  • All about Sarah
  • The Proverbs 31 wife
  • About love
  • How to help your husband love you
  • How to become a wise woman

Sessions will take place Monday evenings from 8 to 9 p.m., Central Time, March 1 through April 26, 2010. The cost for these nine sessions is $49 per woman, and daughters may listen in with their mothers. The sessions will also be recorded and MP3s made freely available to participants shortly after each session, so that any who cannot join all nine sessions live may still hear what was discussed.

GIVEAWAY

Interested?  The Botkin family has offered one of our readers free attendance to all nine sessions!  This would include daughters who listen in with their mother.

To enter, just leave a comment telling whether you are familiar with any of the Botkin’s work or products and what you think about the product(s).  No, they didn’t put me up to that.  I came up with it myself because I like them.  :)

As usual, you can enter up to 3 more times by linking to this giveaway on Facebook, Twitter, and/or your blog.  Please leave a separate comment here for each entry.

We’ll take entries through this Friday, then announce a winner just in time to start next Monday.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Don’t forget to enter our 2 other drawings:

Birth control makes me mad

My sister-in-law Catherine called me last week asking for advice for a friend of hers who seemed in danger of miscarrying for the second time in 8 months.  I gave what advice I could, which wasn’t much, and asked her to let me know what happened.

Her friend miscarried, and was heartbroken.  After losing her previous baby earlier this year at the same point – 8 weeks gestation – she desperately wanted to carry this child to term.

Catherine asked me if I had any idea what might cause multiple miscarriages at the same point, and we talked about possibilities.  Her friend had asked her doctor, who assured her that miscarriages were common and it was nothing unusual to have 2 in a row.  He told her that any further answers were beyond the scope of his knowledge and she should talk to a hormone specialist.

Then Catherine said it: her friend had been on a birth control pill until just before the first pregnancy and miscarriage.

Didn’t her doctor know this?  Doesn’t he know the side effects of the drugs he provides to his patients?  Besides skyrocketing rates of ectopic pregnancies, birth control pills and implants are known to cause abortions and birth defects.  They are known to cause miscarriages in pregnancies that occur during or after use – sometimes up to a year or two later.  This information is available on the package insert of nearly any pill you can buy but doctors plead ignorance, or worse yet they deny it outright!

That poor young woman lost her baby.  She lost two babies.  You can make the case that she should have learned more about the risks of the drug she chose, but I hold her doctor even more responsible.  I also hold those around her responsible.  Someone among her friends should have known and warned her.

Those of us who know these things need to spread the word.  I need to.

Our friends and family may not agree with us on whether to use birth control, but they need to know that certain methods do far more  than simply prevent pregnancy.   If our friends and family believe that life begins at conception, then they need to know that nearly all of the most popular, most effective methods have a Plan B:  murder any unborn child that gets past Plan A.  It’s right there in the fine print that they’ll find in the package.

The quotes below are from Drugs.com.  You will find the same info on nearly any birth control you search except for a simple condom.  All birth control pills work this way.  IUDs work this way.  Implants that gradually release hormones into the bloodstream work this way.

What is Yaz? Yaz prevents ovulation (the release of an egg from an ovary) and also cause changes in your cervical and uterine lining, making it harder for sperm to reach the uterus and harder for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterus

What is Depo-Provera? Depo-Provera is a form of progesterone, a female hormone that prevents ovulation (the release of an egg from an ovary). Depo-Provera also causes changes in your cervical mucus and uterine lining, making it harder for sperm to reach the uterus and harder for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterus…

What is Mirena? Mirena is a plastic device containing the female hormone levonorgestrel. This hormone causes changes in your cervical mucus and uterine lining, making it harder for sperm to reach the uterus and harder for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterus...

What is Norplant System (levonorgestrel intrauterine system)? Levonorgestrel is a female hormone. This hormone can cause changes in your cervical mucus and uterine lining, making it harder for sperm to reach the uterus and harder for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterus

Call me Bigfoot

Maybe you’ve already read it.  This article has been making the rounds and stirring up both sides of the great carbon footprint debate: Having Children Brings High Carbon Impact.

…Take, for example, a hypothetical American woman who switches to a more fuel-efficient car, drives less, recycles, installs more efficient light bulbs, and replaces her refrigerator and windows with energy-saving models. If she had two children, the researchers found, her carbon legacy would eventually rise to nearly 40 times what she had saved by those actions.

“Clearly, the potential savings from reduced reproduction are huge compared to the savings that can be achieved by changes in lifestyle,” the report states…

If it’s new to you, make sure your force fields are up.  No matter what your lifestyle, if you have children you are burdening the planet more than you ever imagined.   You are environmentally irresponsible, to say the least.

If you have already seen it, I hope you took time to read some of the comments too. Many are from people like us who value children.  Others are from environmentalists, but they are hardly in agreement.  Maybe we as Christians don’t have room to talk, but I can’t help being amazed at the division within their own ranks.

While some simply follow the leader and nod in agreement, others follow the reasoning to its logical conclusion: death.  Still others see the inconsistencies in the prevailing arguments coming out of the environmentalist camp, and some even say things that I can wholeheartedly agree with.

There are currently over 300 comments.  Here are just a few of my favorites:

Of the serial killers I’m aware, John Wayne Gacy was the greenest. His victims were young, so he snuffed out many years of carbon consumption. He could have only been greener by targeting females.

Sad, but true.

…This article is a joke, right? If there aren’t going to be any more people, what’s the point of saving the planet. It’s not as if cockroaches care how many greenhouse gases are in the atmosphere…

Ooooh, never thought of that.

Duh. This is obvious. And useless. Reproducing has little inherent harm to the earth. Why don’t we have a discussion questioning the reasons for gross consumption by people in the developed world? Why don’t we talk about the emotional issues that drive Americans (and to a lesser but growing extent, the rest of the world) to spend/toss/spend/toss at soaring rates?

Let’s hit at the core of the problem. When we start being honest with ourselves about why we need a 4-pages-long registry for the birth of a single baby, then maybe we’ll see a greener earth…

Very good question.  We need to be good stewards of God’s creation, and we need to raise up children to continue taking care of His creation until He returns.

You liberals keep swearing off kids. Soon, there will be fewer of you.

I’ll admit it.  I was thinking the same thing.

I suggest that all the people who want to help the planet commit suicide. This will completely eliminate your carbon footprint and will reduce the world’s population.

How can you argue with logic like that?

So, [to a previous commentor], you do want someone to feed you when you can’t work anymore (indirectly, through taxes, Social Security payments and such), but you don’t want to spend any efforts for this yourself?

Somehow the liberals never seem to think this far ahead.  Our children will be feeding them, paying their bills, and dispensing medication in their old age.

What gives the already-living a special ethical status if the safety of the earth is truly at stake? Those so concerned about the earth that they tell others whether to have a family can start reducing the earth’s population one at a time any time they wish.

That’s right.  Let’s put our money where our mouth is, shall we?

As my friend Dug always said: “I’m not having kids; I can pollute as much as I want.”

And they worry that those of us with kids are being irresponsible…

So from this can we derive that war IS the answer?
Do we need more giant wars like WW1 (16 million dead) and WW2 (50-70 million dead) instead of puny wars like Vietnam (2 million dead, max) and Iraq?
Should we stop trying to prevent influenza pandemics and millions of deaths from malaria?
Should we stop trying to feed the hungry?
The four horsemen of The New Ecology: war, conquest, war, famine and death.

Wonderful! Perhaps, in time and with concerted effort, we can achieve negative population growth! Imagine, the earth will be devoid of human life, but positively crystalline in its pristine grandeur!

There is a time and place for sarcasm.  I believe this comments provides an excellent example.

Economists (even very green economists) might take a different viewpoint on the issue posed by the blog. Carbon footprint is a cost, one of many costs entailed by childbirth. On the other hand, a new human being is a good thing, a positive value.

So, the question really comes down to whether the value of a child exceeds the costs, including the environmental impact. Clearly, some readers believe a child has little or no value. For others, the value of a child far exceeds any conceivable cost.

As to my own values, I would need to know whether we are talking about my kid or yours.

The emphasis was mine.  I wanted to make sure you read to the end of that comment.

If the point of saving the planet from global warming by reducing our carbon footprint isn’t to leave a better place for our children, then why bother? If we can’t have kids, we might as well use this place up while we can.

I’m a pacific northwest dwelling, environmental promoting, prius driving mom, but even I have to admit, sometimes these environmentalists miss the forest for the trees.

I suppose we could just commit suicide as well, or bomb any country we chose and elminate a large carbon footprints worth of people, but that would also hardly be the point, now would it?

Amen, sister.  And that’s where I’m tempted to hug a tree-hugger.

Go read some more comments, but be warned.  The language is a little rough here and there.

Just call me Bigfoot. Apparently my carbon footprint is even bigger than my shoe size.

We are a bloody people.

Bear with me there are extensive quotes below from several different articles.

From Whitehouse .gov

Speaking shortly after the confirmation, the President said he was grateful for the Senate’s confirmation, and gave special thanks the Senate Judiciary Committee for their hard work. He then reflected on Judge Sotomayor’s qualifications, and the historic nature of her confirmation:

….They’ve gauged her respect for the proper role of each branch of our government, her commitment to faithfully apply the law to the facts at hand, and her determination to protect our core constitutional rights and freedoms….

This is a role that the Senate has played for more than two centuries, helping to ensure that “equal justice under the law” is not merely a phrase inscribed above our courthouse door, but a description of what happens every single day inside the courtroom...And in the end, the outcome of your case will be determined by nothing more or less than the strength of your argument and the dictates of the law.

These core American ideals – justice, equality, and opportunity — are the ideals she’s fought for throughout her career…

You can read the President’s full statement here.

(emphasis mine and every time I read one of the phrases I thought “Unless you are an unborn child”)

In a National Review Online article titled “Death by Privacy” Contributing Editor Mark R. Levin tells us

“Finally, Blackmun focused on his legal rationale in Roe. He began with a review of the right to privacy, writing, in part:

The Constitution does not explicitly mention any right of privacy. In a line of decisions, however…the Court has recognized that a right of personal privacy, or a guarantee of certain areas or zones of privacy, does exist under the Constitution. In varying contexts, the Court or individual Justices have, indeed, found at least the roots of that right in the First Amendment…in the Fourth and Fifth Amendments…in the penumbras of the Bill of Rights…in the Ninth Amendment…or in the concept of liberty guaranteed by the first section of the Fourteenth Amendment….These decisions make it clear that only personal rights that can be deemed “fundamental” or “implicit in the concept of ordered liberty”…are included in this guarantee of personal privacy. They also make it clear that the right has some extension to activities relating to marriage… procreation…contraception…family relationships…and child rearing and education….

Blackmun felt that the right of privacy, wherever it comes from, includes the right to abortion. Do not look any further for legal argument amidst the voluminous opinion, because it does not exist. Perhaps the extensive historical analysis was included to compensate for the lack of legal analysis.

But Blackmun went further, and the Court followed. Not satisfied to strike down the Texas law, Blackmun began to write what seemed to be a new federal statute. According to Blackmun’s opinion, a woman’s right to abortion could only be abridged by a compelling state interest. In effect, Blackmun argued that there was an inverse relationship between a woman’s interest and the state’s interest that ranged across a spectrum from conception to birth. Therefore, the state’s interest at conception was minimal but increased as the pregnancy progressed, reaching its peak at the end of the pregnancy. A woman’s interest, paramount at conception, began to give some ground to the state’s interest in protecting the fetus as it matured toward being able to live outside of the mother. But Blackmun specifically declared that the unborn child was not a “person” under the Fourteenth Amendment, and thus had no equal protection rights.”

During her confimation hearings Rupublicans asked Judge Sotomayor how she felt about the status of abortion in America.

“The court’s decision in Planned Parenthood vs. Casey reaffirmed the court holding of Roe. That is the precedent of the court and settled in terms of the holding of the court.”  - Sonya Sotamayor speaking before the Senate Judiciary Comittee during her confirmation hearings.

You cannot make immorality moral by court precedent or legislation. Abortion remains an evil, murderous thing whether or not the court and the legislative branch.

So in honor of Judge Sotomayor’s historic confirmation I am posting a video that puts a live face on the “private” act of abortion, and saying a prayer. I am prayng God will grant repentance in time to spare us from chastisment.

Now I will be joining the 40 days for life campaign this fall.

How about you?