Sunday, January 15, 2017

Poverty in the 1800's




Betsy Moody was the mother of nine children.  She lived in a beautiful house in Northfield, Massachusetts in the early 1800's.  She was expecting twins when her 41 year old husband died suddenly leaving the family in dire straits.  There was a mortgage on the house, but because of favorable laws in those days, the creditors were not able to take away her home.  Instead, they took just about all her possessions, including the firewood needed to heat the home, in order to recover the debt.

Betsy was the mother of the famous preacher, D. L. Moody. The way in which she brought up her children and retained the family homestead, as a widow, is inspiring. 

Her brother came to her aid by providing such necessary things as firewood. They were also helped by the local pastor. Her older children worked in nearby farms (as was common in those days) to help feed and support the family. The work they did helped them to learn skills and built a tremendous work ethic, making them hardworking, dependable and successful. 

The children were required to attend church services, as were most all children of the time.  Their "mother instructed her children in the true religion of the heart that seeks first God and His righteousness."  The foundation of their home was strong in godly living.  They also learned compassion and charity from an early age:

"Mrs. Moody was tender-hearted, and the children learned the privilege of giving from their scanty store.  The hungry were never turned away from her door and on one occasion when the provision for the evening meal was very meagre it was put to the vote of the little ones whether they should give of their small supply to a poor beggar who appealed for aid.  The children begged that he should be aided and offered to have their own slices cut thinner."

The Sabbath was a wonderful time for the children.  The older ones worked away from home all week and returned each Saturday evening to be with the family. On Sunday, the family brought a packed lunch and spent the day at Church hearing 2 sermons and attending the Sunday School before returning home.  This precious time created a beloved "habit of attending God's house."

The children would bring home books from the church library for their mother to read to them.   She, herself, only owned 3 books, including the Bible, a catechism, and a "book of devotions."  She also read to the children each morning and prayed with them.

Betsy made home life attractive and pleasant for the children, despite her poverty. She did this by encouraging the children to open their home to friends. While the children played, "she would sit quietly with her mending," and provide a wholesome and pleasant environment of love and warmth.

I am amazed at how beautiful their house was, yet knowing how cold New England winters can be, I realize the Moody family did not have an easy life.  Yet, somehow, through their hard work, independent Yankee work ethic, and great trust in God, they succeeded!  It also amazes me to learn that Betsy lived in that same house until she passed into Heaven, at the age of 90!

Her grandson tells us that his father, D.L. Moody, "could never speak of those early days of want and adversity without the most tender references to that brave mother whose self-sacrifice and devotion had sacredly guarded the home entrusted to her care."

Blessings
Mrs.White

*Quotes, and photograph, in this post are from the book, "The Life of D.L. Moody by His Son," published in 1900.



From the Archives -

Old Fashioned Thrift - Retirement Planning for the Poor.

Taking care of Children - I Hear Angels Crying.

A Happy Marriage - A Wife Who Does Not Complain.





Mrs. White's special book for Homemakers - "Mother's Book of Home Economics."





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Review - Class Lesson Planner




The following is a homeschool review of "CLASS Lesson Planner," published by Christian Liberty Press:


 
 
 
This 111 page book is an excellent addition to any homeschool curriculum.  Here is what you will find inside:

1. Ideas for organizing your school year

  One method is to take each school book and divide the number of workbook pages into the number of school days in the year.  This will help you see how many pages to do on each school day, in order to complete the curriculum on time.

2. There are a few pages of blank calendars for each month of the year.
 
  This includes suggestions on how to fill these in.

3.  The Main portion of the book contains the "Weekly Lesson Plan Forms." 

  This is my favorite part of the book and what I use most!   Here is where you, as the teacher, write down your daily and weekly work that you expect your student to do.  For example:

In the category of "Math" - do page 14 in workbook.

 I also write a few notes about what the student learned, or any special accomplishments from the lesson. I will write notes in the margin about what we need to work on for improvement, if needed.

The weekly Lesson planner section has two pages for each week, covering all possible subjects. The forms are blank for you to fill in the dates.  You can start this at any time, take a vacation, and start back up again by just filling in the dates.  There is a space for each of the following subjects:

Bible; Reading; Spelling and Handwriting; Grammar and Phonics; History; Science; Math: and "Other."

I like to write down what we did, as a sort of brief journal. It is also great to look back over and see, in writing, all that you have accomplished with your student!

4. In the back of the book, there is a worksheet where you can write out the names of all the curriculum you are using (category suggestions are given) as well as spaces for the year, and the name of your student.

5. There are pages to list the assignments given, as well as worksheets to list all the books your student has read independently.

6. You'll find an attendance record, report card, evaluation reports, transcript worksheets, and so much more.  There is even a worksheet for a weekly chore list, which is so helpful for homeschoolers!


You can find this book at the Christian Liberty Press site:

CLASS Lesson Planner



 This post is the fourth in a series of reviews I am doing using Christian Liberty Press curriculum.  I hope to do 2 reviews each month as I work with my grandson for Kindergarten. To start with the first post, please see the introduction:

"24 Years of Homeschooling with Christian Liberty Press"



* Disclosure - I received this item for review purposes.*










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Sunday, January 1, 2017

The First Housekeeping Day of the Year

Library of Congress:  1941 Georgia family saying Grace


The other night, I cleaned our kitchen and parlour before I went to sleep. I wanted it to look nice because that makes me happy.  I want to reflect a little on this since it is the first day of the New Year.

No matter how tired I am, I try to make the effort of having the main rooms of the house put "to rights" before I rest.  This often takes herculean courage and an incredible attitude of "with a will."

I am not young, nor am I old.  But life has taken its toll on me.  I get worn out incredibly easily.  I do rest when I must, but I have to get back to the duties of homemaking to accomplish lovely things here for my family.

The lovely things of home, for me, are just keeping things simple and peaceful.  It is peaceful to have homemade foods made on a daily basis. This keeps us nourished with wholesome food.  It is peaceful to fluff pillows and straiten the couch cover in the parlour.  I want the couch and chairs to look inviting so people can take the time of rest and refreshment here before getting back to their daily work.

I have grown children, a teenager, toddlers and babies here on a daily basis.  They play, eat, run around, and enjoy home.  They do not make "messes," they simply "live."  I clean up as we go, or when they are finished. They are my helpers as we often do chores together.  I feel blessed as I work as I am so grateful to have them all here. It is a privilege to be the wife, mother, and grandmother of a family.

Sometimes, if I am terribly worn out, I will leave the crayons on the kitchen table. I will leave my tea cup there as well.  I will leave the papers, and the cups from the children's juice.  I will leave the chairs out from the morning activity.   I am greatly amused when, later in the day, a little grandchild will come back to visit me, glance at the table, and looking worried, say, "Me`me didn't clean up the mess?"  It is funny because he knows how much I love to clean and he thought something was wrong with his beloved grandmother! This sweet little comment gave me the energy to get it all tidied up with his help.

We cannot have perfectly spotless houses in showroom condition. Certainly not.  But we can take the time, throughout the day, to be about the business of housekeeping. It takes work and effort and creativity to keep a home in order.  It also takes a cheerful willingness to make home a peaceful, happy place to be.

The nice thing about being a good homemaker is we don't have to wait for a New Year to start. We can start fresh every morning.

Blessings
Mrs.White


From the Archives -

Frugality - Poor and Pretty Living.

Happy Marriage - When Groceries are the Presents.

A Wonderful Kind to be - The Mother who isn't Busy.






Mrs. White's special book for Homemakers - "Mother's Book of Home Economics."





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Thursday, December 29, 2016

Beautiful Flowers

Flower arrangement on the sideboard table of Mrs. White's Home.
[If you click on the photograph, you will see a larger image.]


 I absolutely love a pretty house.  Flowers add a special touch to make a home look elegant.  Usually I only buy fresh flowers in the summer, when they are marked down.  My favorites are pink carnations or mini roses.   They look lovely on tables, counters, or on a desk. 

When there are new flowers brought into the house, it makes me want to deep clean and get everything looking perfect to make sure the effect of the flowers is more powerful.

Flowers make me smile. 

Of course, since I cannot afford them very often, I gather wildflowers from our Estate when in season. For the rest of the year,  I rely on a few bunches of plastic (fake) ones in assorted vases.  These look lovely, and last for many years.

Yesterday I received a gorgeous flower arrangement which sits in an elegant container.  I placed it on my sideboard table in the parlour (see photo above).   Each time I walk into the room, I am reminded of the decorations in the lovely home of "Emily Gilmore."

My new flower arrangement consists of Roses, Mums, and Hydrangeas with the color scheme called, "Rose Cream."  It is called a "Silk Plant" from CommercialSilk.com

I received this item for review purposes and am delighted with them.  They also have outdoor artificial plants. One that looks really good to me is the potted pink azaleas!

One of the places you can follow this company is on twitter.  They recently shared a post about orchids and roses, with a beautiful photograph!

You'll also see many pictures of their products on their Pinterest page.



*For more information about my commercial breaks, please see my disclosure policy.*









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Review - In the Beginning Handwriting Level K



The following is a homeschool review of "In the Beginning Handwriting- Level K," published by Christian Liberty Press:





I have used this same book for all five of my children, who are now graduated, and are adults.  It is a classic that works wonderfully.

The first few pages include a complete Alphabet chart, showing both upper and lower case letters with small arrows to show how to draw each one.  The student can look back to this page often as he works through the book.

There are a total of 60 pages.

The student begins by doing a few pages of following instructions.  This is important.  If the child can follow directions, he will be a good student.

Next, the student has to recognize items that are the same and those that are different.  He will also find missing items in simple black and white illustrations.  These skills will help him find specific letters inside words, and also differentiate between similar letters such as "b" and "d." 

The student does some tracing of lines and then of letters.  There is a page for each letter of the alphabet. 

The student might want to take a few days on each page. There is no rush in learning.  Taking the time to do each page slowly and carefully should produce excellent results.

By the end of the book, the student will write numbers, and then simple sentences.

Overall it is an excellent workbook for students from a trusted Christian publisher.

This book can be found at the Christian Liberty Press site:

Handwriting - In the Beginning Level K.




 This post is the third in a series of reviews I am doing using Christian Liberty Press curriculum.  I hope to do 2 reviews each month as I work with my grandson for Kindergarten. To start with the first post, please see the introduction:

"24 Years of Homeschooling with Christian Liberty Press"



* Disclosure - I received this item for review purposes.*








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