Thursday, October 1, 2009


I love this picture for what it represents... those sweet and simple moments with those we love the most.

I recently read a very disturbing article from the Associated Press about President Obama's new ideas on educating our children. He is proposing that we extend the school day from 1-3 hours, and that we curtail summer vacation to stay competitive in the world. What?! I am so concerned about what this means for families if this passes. So where is the time for the family to be together? Where is the time for family values to be taught and exemplified? My friend had a good suggestion that to stay competitive in the world, we use the current school hours more wisely, and cut out ineffective programs and activities. I think that would be a much better solution. I fear that this proposal could pass since many leaders in the country might see this initiative as "free childcare". You better believe if this plan is implemented... that will be the day I homeschool my children.

Anyway, I am really passionate about this topic, and how the adversary would have us fill our lives with so many distractions, and so much STUFF... that we miss out on those simple moments... the most important things in life, that really aren't things. I firmly believe that children need time at home with the family, unstructured time to just be together. Here are some inspiring quotes on this subject:

"Our lives have become intensely fast paced filled with business and a frantic flitting about that was uncharacteristic of earlier ages. We pack our lives with so many activities and pursuits that many of us have lost sight of something that is of critical importance to families… time together." -Gordon B. Hinckley

"Women today are encouraged by some to have it all: money, travel, marriage, motherhood, and separate careers in the world. . . However, you cannot do all these things well at the same time. You cannot be a 100-percent wife, a 100-percent mother, a 100-percent Church worker, a 100-percent career person, and a 100-percent public-service person at the same time. How can all of these roles be coordinated? I suggest that you can have it sequentially. Sequentially is a big word meaning to do things one at a time at different times. The book of Ecclesiastes says: “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under … heaven.”~ James Faust

"Mothers who know... do less. They permit less of what will not bear good fruit eternally. They allow less media in their homes, less distraction, less activity that draws their children away from their home. Mothers who know are willing to live on less and consume less of the world's goods in order to spend more time with their children—more time eating together, more time working together, more time reading together, more time talking, laughing, singing, and exemplifying. These mothers choose carefully and do not try to choose it all. Their goal is to prepare a rising generation of children who will take the gospel of Jesus Christ into the entire world. Their goal is to prepare future fathers and mothers who will be builders of the Lord's kingdom for the next 50 years. That is influence; that is power." -Julie B. Beck

So go hug your little ones today and enjoy a few sweet and simple moments together. :)


Saquel25 said...

You know it may not be bad to shorten the summer vacation. My kids are begging to go back after two months and they forget so much but I am totally with you on the length of the school day. I hate it when Leia comes home with 40 minutes-1 hour of homework EVERY SINGLE night. She's just done 8.30-3.30 and she just wants to play with her brothers. I have a hard time with that. I try to have her leave it until after dinner so she can have some time but by then she is tired and she still has 30 minutes of reading to do on top of the homework.
When I moved here to America I was surprised by the amount of stuff in the school day that's not very academic. I know in High School the emphasis on sports is so much greater than in England. I like it because I don't want too much pressure on my children. But if more hours are going to be tacked onto the end of the school day then I'd rather they be cut as well. The kids are all well past being babies but really when it comes down to it, that's all they are still.

Kinsey Pistorius said...

i absolutely agree and was concerned about this as well. very well said!

Dana said...

Actually, our school children have MORE actual time in schools than other include Japan! The idea that more is better is so wrong!

I was concerned about how Obama wants schools to be "safe havens", shouldn't the HOME be the safe haven? WHile there may be a small number of children who do not have safe homes, the percentage is not a high enough number for me to even consider lengthening the governments influence on my kids to "protect" the other kids.

If we want to protect kids from "unsafe" homes, then longer school days is NOT the way to do it!

The Woods said...

Wow, awesome quotes! A good friend and seasoned mom once told me to enjoy the time when your babies are home because once they enter the school system, so much precious time is turned over to someone else and someone else's ideas and ideals...I understand why many moms are so passionate with their childrens education and choose to homeschool. Yes, longer school days and "free day care" are just a few more subtle ways to attack the family unit.

Love the new picture on your blog.

Rachel said...

I totally agree. Longer school days is NOT the answer! In fact, I think shortening it would be even more beneficial... but that's a whole another post :) Anyways, thanks for sharing your thoughts! I've been doing some reflection on our activities as well... life gets too busy and it slips by :(

Rob and Steph Puterbaugh said...

my suggestion is to do what byu-idaho does now... focus on the subjects and make all extra circular activities club sports. That way there isn't as much competition and people can choose to do them and they have to pay extra to do them as well. Just a thought of course.

military mama said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. It was so well stated and something I am very passionate about as well.

I have loved having my children home this year. It has been a challenge in many ways, but it has also been full of "special moments."

The adversary knows that the family is the most important unit and he is doing all he can to attack it.

Thanks again!

Julie Jardine said...

Amen to all the above comments. It is good to know that there are so many poeple who would disagree with this kind of thing. The key is for all of us to do what we can to fight it, if we need to. I think the majority of mothers in America would agree, and we could harness their power, nothing could stop us!
But it is just another way that Satan is trying to attack the family. It is scary how many things attack the family unit now a days. Good Job Nicole for being such a great example to the world of what a mother should be! You probably won't ever know how many lives you effect, but I bet it's a lot! Keep being a "light unto the world", you are doing great!


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