Sunday Ramblings

I don’t have anything earth shattering to post today, so I’m just sharing my heart for a bit. Hope you don’t mind. 🙂

After a CRAZY fall schedule, I am just so thankful to have a little less traveling for the next few weeks! We were in North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio, Florida, Arizona, and California…all since September! That’s alot of travel, ya’ll. 🙂

It’s funny how I miss the simple things when we’re in a strenuous travel season–things like trying out a new recipe, or reading a good book to the children. I miss the routine of homeschooling and homemaking. The first year we were on the road full-time, I struggled with accepting and adjusting to the “new” normal. I’ve since learned that this is a God-given season of motherhood and ministry for me, and to choose thankfulness in all things (even VOMIT).  There are a multitude of blessings to be found while we travel the country and fund-raise, and I don’t want to spend this time wishing for what was or for what is yet to be.

One of the awesome benefits to taking our family (and our “home”) with us on this journey is that they get to experience America and God’s incredible creation, not from a book, but totally hands on! Can’t beat the fact that we stuck our feet in the Atlantic Ocean one week and found hermit crabs in the Pacific the next. I love that.

My heart is yearning for Africa, though. Some days it feels so close I begin to daydream about hanging ruffled curtains, purchasing a property for our orphanage, and holding our first orphan in my arms. Then other days it feels like we will be fund-raising forever. 🙂

One of my little ones has dyslexia and I’ve spent an intense amount of time this fall researching tips and working with him. I’ve parented a variety of needs, but this one continues to throw me for a loop. I’m currently using All About Reading with him, and I’m loving it, but progress is slow. His mind works so creatively and he loves learning, so it’s frustrating that he can’t read the way he’d like to. Any success stories out there?

I’m hoping to work on a couple of new videos this week. (You can click here to view my practical videos on You Tube!)  Tomorrow is also my first day back on Trim Healthy Mama after a break during our busiest travel season. I got the new cookbook for my birthday and I’m SO excited to try out some of the new recipes! I’ll share my favorites here, too.

Well, that’s all I have time for today. I’ll be back soon with those videos and a couple of posts that have been swirling around in my head for weeks. Remember to subscribe here on the blog so you don’t miss a single post OR “Like” my page on Facebook. 🙂

Blessings to each of you!


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3 thoughts on “Sunday Ramblings

  1. Hi! I’ve dealt with dyslexia, too. I don’t know how old your little guy is, but one of ours was not neurologically ready to read until almost age 10. Since we have vision issues in our family, I checked with our vision specialist to make sure that vision issues weren’t the problem. The child was far-sighted and needed reading glasses for close work.

    But in addition, after studying neural integration and the impact on learning issues, and talking with a reading specialist, we followed the course of hauling out the phonics book (we found Alphaphonics, with its very plain pages, no distracting illustrations, to be best for this distractable child), trying a few lessons, and putting it back on the shelf for six months if it wan’t catching. (Yes, we did this from age six to age nine-plus.) I did a lot of reading aloud with this one. All our literature, history, and science was hands-on and read-aloud. Since I did multi-level schooling, this worked. (Reading aloud together, I mean, from carefully chosen living books.)

    We made sure that the children always had access to books on CD, or Librivox recordings, during our quiet times and reading times. Narnia, Oz, Railway Children (Nesbitt), Anne of Green Gables, Five Little Peppers were some of our favorites.

    What really worked for this child was when we got the Focus on the Family Radio Theatre Narnia series. Suddenly something clicked. That series is so close to the original books; word-for-word in many cases. The child listened to these over and over, following along in our illustrated set (beautiful color illustrations), getting more and more familiar with how the words looked.

    All the children did copywork. For the dyslexic ones, I bought a program that would print out handwriting sheets — you could type in the text and print it either with a blank line under every line, to copy, or print out a whole paragraph in the handwriting style you wanted them to practice, or print out the selection in dotted or faint (gray instead of black) print. This child “copied” by tracing over the printed out copy. (The most dyslexic one preferred the gray printing to dotted lines.) It was a way of training the brain. I also bought this child an e-reader (first a Nook, until it wore out, and now a Kindle). With an e-reader, you can make the font really big! And that can really help a struggling reader. You can load the e-reader with books that interest the child (that’s crucial! So for this child, it was Horatio Alger, and the Oz books), and make the print size large enough to be comfortable.

    Also, it can really help to practice large motor skills before attempting small motor (like writing on paper) skills. Give the child a paintbrush (the kind you’d use to paint a house) and bucket of water, and have him practice his letters on the side of the house, or the sidewalk. The larger the strokes the better. Get the whole arm and shoulder into the act. Fill a 9×13 container with sand or cornmeal and help the child trace letters with a finger. Glue lentils or split peas to cardstock in the shape of letters, and trace with the hand or pointer finger.

    That child of ours has never really grasped phonics, though now doing college work and reading the material, with some difficulty, but still… reading well enough to be getting decent grades. It appears to me that this child’s brain is just not wired for phonics; sounding out words still doesn’t make sense, and the child learned to read apparently by memorizing the shapes of words (which, I think, was some of the theory behind the whole-word method of reading instruction. It works for some people, I guess).

    I hope this gives you some encouragement and ideas to try.

    1. Dear Jean,
      This was incredibly helpful! My little guy LOVES audio books and I’m getting the Focus on the Family Narnia for him for Christmas. (Shhh!)
      I’m going to apply ALL of your ideas! THANK YOU!

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