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CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS~SPRING OF 2012~
2 years ago
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CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS:
1.) Planning a family garden together~
2.) Planting seeds indoors for an outdoor garden~
3.) Preparing the ground for flower, vegetable and fruit gardens.
4.) Making a story book about Jesus, putting together Easter Baskets, and dying Easter eggs.
5.)
Early sunrise prayers; Sunrise Easter Services, and family gatherings.
6.)
Family projects and fun activities for spring~making and flying homemade kites, collecting sea shells together, visiting museums, and bike-riding together~
7.) Planting early spring bulbs together;
Family walk to see the flowers, planting your garden~
8.) Signing your family up for 4-H; to learn pet care, together. Sign up for Vacation Bible School, sports activities, and Christian Family camp. Plan and take a family outing together.
2 years ago



SINGLE PARENTS~Planning a family garden together and planting seeds indoors~
Planning your garden ahead is wise, and necessary. But not only that; it is a wonderful opportunity to spend time with your children, and maybe grandparents. (Sometimes grandparents have a lot of wisdom when it comes to gardening!) There are a lot of things that must be done when it comes to planning a garden.
You must go to the library or bookstore and find gardening "How to" books. That is both educational, fun, and time spent with family. Together you buy cheap notebooks and draw up garden plans. this is also educational for your children, and a project which promotes family togetherness. With books to study from; and look at, you can decide which vegetables, fruits, and flowers, and herbs to plant. Older children can write down the vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers that you choose together to plant.
A calender can be drawn up; and dates written down, for cool weather, and warm weather crops. Gardening terms can be defined,
discussed, and written down in notebooks.  Also, you can study about which vegetables, fruits, and flowers can be planted right in the garden, and which seeds should be planted in the house.
Once plans are drawn up, you need to think about planting seeds. They need to be planted at least six weeks before transplanting into the garden, but more is even better. You should plant cool weather crops first, such as cabbage and Cole crops, than soon after, plant your warm weather plants.
 You will need seed packs, soil with special growing nutrients, (which should say on the label that they are clean and sterilized), either bright and sunny south, or west windows, and/ or grow lights. If you don't get a lot of sunshine, it is very important to use grow lights. All pots and cell packs must be sterile and clean. as well as any tools used. Your gardening books will tell you how to plant, when to plant, and what to plant. Your children will get a chance to study temperature zones. Your gardening books will also tell you how and how often to water.
The last and most important thing you will study in your gardening books is hardening off of  crops, and how to do that, before you plant your crops in the garden. Your children, and grandparents will learn a lot; and in the case of grandparents may offer a lot of knowledge, you will have family together time, and will benefit from the experience of planting a garden. 
2 years ago


SINGLE PARENTS~Preparing the ground for vegetable, fruit, herbs, and flower gardens~  
In the North, a good gardening practice for your garden is to put dried leaves, straw, manure, and other organic vegetative materials on your garden area, and to dig it under, or to rototiller it under. By doing this early, you are allowing these organic materials to rot and put nutrients into the soil. You have to do this early because the active decay of vegetative materials; uses oxygen and nitrogen, and the nutrients are not released into the soil, until they have rotted.
Further south, where the crops are ready to plant, you have to put nutrients into the soil that are already decomposed, and you can find these materials at your nearest gardening center.
 A word of warning!!!!! Do not put any grass in because grass often carries seed heads on the stems that will grow like crazy; and you will spend all you time pulling out grass. Grass also may contain weed seed, or roots, which once start growing in your garden, will become a constant battle to keep out. There will be enough of that already; which is something that all gardeners have to contend with. Daily weeding is a necessity to keep ahead of the growing weeds, and is a fact of life.
Compost; made correctly, also is a wonderful addition to your garden. Compost is organic materials, both dry and green, and manure, that are mixed together and constantly stirred, at least once a week. The mixture heats up; through a natural process, and the heat quickly rots the plant materials. To make compost you need a container or small fenced in area, where the mixture can get oxygen, water and you must stir with a shovel, to make sure all parts of the mixture get enough oxygen and moisture. You can buy this already bagged. Be sure to check on city ordinances about this. This is like giving your garden super vitamins.Before using make sure the composting process is complete, (All matter rotted, and decomposed). Never put any animal products, or animal fat in your compost. It takes way to long to rot, sometimes years; however, you may put your leftover vegetables, fruits and any plant material that you do not use in your cooking, into your compost bin.
 
2 years ago
(Continued)-
This is the time to plan your layout for your garden, and what vegetables, fruits, and herbs you are going to plant. Get a notebook, or a sketch pad, and begin planning your garden.  You will than need to help your family with what to plant, when to plant, and where to plant. This might be time consuming for the time being;  however, it will be rewarding for you and for your family.
When planning what to plant there is one word of warning! Do not plant mint! It is aggressive and prolific. It spreads by just a tip of a root in the ground, and you won't be able to control it. It will grow into everything; your flowers, your vegetables, and it will grow everywhere.
When planning you will also have to plan how to plant your garden. Will you use rows, hills, companion gardening, or other gardening techniques? Which vegetable need the sun, and which the shade, which are cool weather crops, and which are summer; warm weather crops?  These are important questions which a visit to the library can help you with. I also like to read organic gardening, and Mother Earth News, but there are many gardening magazines available, which you might be able to find at your local library. It doesn't hurt to pray that your garden will turn out well. 
2 years ago


CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS~Planting Springs Bulbs Together~  
A  fun project to do with your whole family is to plant spring bulbs. Again, as I always say, the first thing you have to do is have a fun family visit to the library, to check out some books on planting spring flower bulbs. Once you have the information you need, you can make a fun plan and do some planting.
It makes a big difference on where you live, on how you go about making a plan. Whether you live in the South, East, West, North or in the Midwest will make a difference on what you plant, and when you plant your bulbs. Also, you should pay attention to certain things like daffodil bulbs are poisonous to dogs, and children, while other flower bulbs are actually edible.
I love daffodils by the way, but my dog used to dig up the earth to find things to eat, so I assume other dogs will do this also, and small children will often think a bulb is a piece of fruit, so you must use caution in this area. If you have a fenced in yard and no small children around plant daffodils away! I assume that most of you reading at least have grandchildren, so you should do some research on what is edible, and what is poisonous.
Now that I have cautioned you, don't let that take the fun out of your flower gardening. Library research is important and good for the children; as you might say, it is an educational experience. Bulbs have to be planted at the right time of year, at a certain depth, and they have certain requirements. Some require a great amount of sun and some require shade. Some require quite a lot of water, while others like dry conditions. Some need to be in the fall, while others have to be planted in the spring. Some are perennials, and some have to be dug up in the fall and stored in a cool, dry, but not freezing place. All of these are considerations in planting bulbs.
The next thing you have to figure out is have much time you have, what areas you have to plant your flowers in, and what kinds of flowers, and colors that you like. Some gardeners actually suggest that you do your planning in the winter months, but if this is your first time planting spring bulbs, my suggestion is to keep it simple. Plant one or two kinds of bulbs; and get used to these, and than try one or two more.
If you like fancy contraptions you can buy bulb diggers for different kinds of bulbs, and well you can do the looking and shopping. Hand shovels along with a regular shovel, a garden rake,  gloves for the whole family, and bulb fertilizer are necessities.
Use the large shovel to dig up your flower garden space, after digging and making sure their are no large dirt clumps in your garden, dig in fertilizer  and mix completely, rake the garden over to make it smooth, than you have to get on your hand and knees and dig with your hand shovel, the depth according to directions. (I think if you have bad knees like me, that you can get special hand shovels, or cushioned boards, and knee protectors, in some gardening catalogs, but you might have to do a Google search.)Put some flower bulb food on the bottom of the hole, and than place the bottom of the bulb in the hole and cover it up. Mark what you have planted there. It is so easy to forget. Water and now you have to do the hard part. Wait for the flowers to grow. Try to weed everyday, because weeds grow fast, and the bigger they are, the harder they are to get out.


This post was modified from its original form on 21 Mar, 7:58
2 years ago



SINGLE PARENTS~Making a story book about Jesus; putting together an Easter Basket; dying Easter Eggs~ 
This is a wonderful time to talk to your children about Jesus. With Easter coming up you can work on projects with your children.
One project you can do with your children is to have them make a story book about Jesus. There are many ways to do this. You can have them color pictures with crayons, paint, paste felt figures in a felt book, or some other creative way. You can help them to write the story of Jesus; and you can also help them with the book itself. Set some time aside for this project.
Another project you can do is make Easter baskets. You can buy baskets and have the children decorate them with ribbons, artificial flowers and whatever you choose to use.
The third project you can do is to dye Easter eggs with your children; and afterwords you can put the colored eggs in their decorated basket.
One final thing you can do is deliver food to those who are without, so that they can enjoy an Easter Meal with their family. You can take your children along to help deliver the baskets! If you can't afford to do this maybe you can invite someone over for the Easter meal who is alone, or another family who has no money. Your children learn valuable lessons when they see you helping others.
God Bless, and have a wonderful Easter holiday! 


This post was modified from its original form on 31 Mar, 5:28
2 years ago



CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS:
Early sunrise prayers;  and family gatherings. 
A wonderful way to gather with your family is in Sunrise prayer and worship. This is a wonderful ceremony for your children to be included in; and if possible, grandparents and great-grandparents.
This teaches your children so many things about God and spirituality.
1.) It teaches children is the important of greeting the Lord; first thing in the morning, and putting God above all else!
2.) It teaches discipline. When a family, or individual makes themselves, get up before the sunrises, they are learning to discipline themselves; and make an effort before the Lord. The Lord appreciates this effort.
3.) It creates a bond between family members. Whether your family is you and child(ren); or aunts, uncles, grandparents, great-grandparents, sister and/or  brothers, you are gathering as a unite to worship and respect the Lord. This is a lasting effort that will stay with your child, or children for a lifetime, and will strengthen your family!
4.) It strengthens your family in commitment to the Lord. This is everything when it comes to teaching your children about commitment to the Lord, and in life. Your example of commitment to the Lord, will make a deeper impression on your child, or children, than  words can speak!
5.) It gives your child a chance to greet the Lord early in the day, and to experience the Holy Spirit in Early Sunrise Worship. Jesus commanded the disciples and us, to let the little children come to Him! We must let them have this opportunity to open up to Jesus and to the Holy Spirit. They may be little but they are not unimportant, Jesus wants them to come to Him, and they do not want to be left out!
6.) Early Sunrise Prayer and Worship is teaching your children about priorities. Making the Lord first in the day should be our first priority. Your child will go the rest of the day with a different perspective than before.
Family gathering for sunrise service is not just good for the children, it is good for the adults also. Just as children are learning good lessons, the adults are also learning lessons, sometimes the same lessons, and their spiritual understanding is deepening as well as expanding. When you practice Sunrise Worship with the family, a real transformation is taking place.
Finally, when the family, including the children, is participating in Sunrise Worship and Pray, everyone is blessed!
2 years ago



CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS:
Family projects and fun activities for spring~making and flying homemade kites, collecting sea shells together, visiting museums, and bike-riding together~    
A really fun project for the whole family is to make homemade kites. Basically if you have a pile of newspapers you can use that for kites.  You can paint the newspapers any way you want to, and for the rest of the directions,to the local library and find a couple of books on kite making. This is a fun family project from beginning to end; from your family visit to the public library to the finish when you and your children go kite flying! Don't forget to include the grandparents also!
If you live by the sea or by a lake; you can take a nice walk around the lake and collect sea shells. Many children absolutely love doing this. And later you can wash the shells, and either do a crafts project or just keep them for a collection. You also can take a trip to the local library, do a Google search, or drag out your encyclopedia set, to identify the types of shells that you have. If you do not have shells where you live, you can collect different kinds of rocks, wash them, ID them, and save them for a collection.
Visiting museums is a fun activity and you can have many conversations about the things you have seen, history, styles of the different time periods, and lifestyles. A double trip to the museum, and than to the public library can expound on the benefits of the field trip. (You may have noticed that I like to encourage reading!) This is definitely an outing to include the grandparents in.
Bike riding as a family; in a safe area, is a good way to spend time with your family, get some good exercise, and fresh air. Many communities have parks with bike paths and a lot of interesting scenery to go with it. Teach your children about safety and make sure they wear helmets, elbow and knee pads.
Hiking paths are also a good way to spend time with your family, get exercise, and fresh air; than later you can enjoy a picnic together. Apply insect repellent to keep nasty ticks away; and in cool weather long sleeves will help also! Whatever you decide to do, the most important thing is that you spend time together as a family.
2 years ago



CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS:
Planting early spring bulbs together; Family walk to see the flowers, planting your garden~
 
This is a really nice time to go for walks with your children, and sometimes with the grandparents also, to see the beautiful flowers, and listen to the springtime songs of our lovely feathered friends. If you have cameras; bring those along also! Talk to your children while you are walking. This is a great gift for you and your family, and as you walk, look, and listen to wonder of God's creation, remember to thank Him in your prayers!
This is also a good time, depending on where you live, to plant your garden, keeping in mind that in the North there is still a chance of frost up until the end of May. But anyway get out you shovel, plow, or rototiller and prepare you garden for the planting season is upon you. Actually, some of you may have already planted your spring crops. the peas, carrots, radishes, cabbages, lettuce, and other cool weather crops but if not there is no time to lose. Get those planted right away, and your potatoes also. You can wait until June 1 to plant your warm weather crops. When you plant your crops, keep that gardening book close by and make this a family event. You plant the smaller seeds, and let your little ones plant the great big seeds, which are easier to hold. This is an activity which unifies, rewards, and teaches you as a family. Unless you live in an area where there is a lot of rainfall, you will need to water daily. Especially if you live in a dry area, which gets hot also. Kind of like where I live. I am assuming that you have taken your children to the library, studied the hows and whens of gardening, and your garden area is prepared. When you plow you garden area, put in compost, and rotted manure, to ensure proper nutrition for the vegetables, some of which are heavy feeders. You get the best vegetables and nutrition that way!
There is still time to plant early spring flowers and spring bulbs, and depending on your weather, you may want to start planting your summer flowers also. But remember, even as far south as Nebraska, and Kansas there can be hard frost up until the end of May! If you do plant your summer gardens; and flowers early, be sure to watch the weather forecasts for frosts, and cover our gardens and flowers at night with blankets, plastic or specialized protective covers. Some of us use empty milk bottles we have saved, and old bed sheets. It works as long as it covers the plants and keeps the frost off!
And most of all enjoy the late spring flowers and all the gifts of nature that God has given us to enjoy and to protect.
2 years ago


CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS:
Signing your family up for 4-H; to learn pet care, together. Sign up for Vacation Bible School, sports activities, and Christian Family camp. Plan and take a family outing together. 

Now that June is almost upon us; and for some school is over, and for others, nearly so, you should think about summer activities for you and your children.
As Christians; we need to learn to be good stewards, and our children can learn this by taking pet care classes. I'm not just talking about obedience school for dogs, but what I am really talking about is an overall pet care class. A class that covers feeding, grooming, vet care, and all aspects of animal care. I'm talking about a class that teaches responsible pet care to the children, and to the whole family! Often you can find these classes and sign up for them at 4-H, and your county extension agency can tell where to contact them, and perhaps even give you a form. If there are no 4-H classes where you live, your county extension agency can also tell you about other classes available. Ask if they have classes on the care of cats, dogs and other domestic animals that might be considered pets. If your child only takes one class this summer, make it a pet care class! It's very important that you do, and ultimately rewarding.
Summer also is a time for Vacation Bible School, summer Christian camp, and family outings! Vacation Bible School is fun, fun, fun. Or at least it was for me. It is a time for children when they can get together for fun activities, crafts, singing, learning about Jesus, and spending time with other Christians! Each Church and Fellowship does things a little differently, and some VBS's are completely free, while other charge a fee, but many have a grant program for the low income.
Church camp, Christian Summer Camp, and similar camps will probably cost some money, but also may have a grant program for the low income, so you should check into it.
If you can not find summer camps that you can afford, you might be able to put together your own summer week-end camps for your children and their friends. Family outings are also important for your family. It is very important to spend time with your children and family outings such as camping, picnics, and other fun outings are fun ways to do so. 
2 years ago
CHRISTIAN SINGLE PARENTS~
This is the end of Christian Single Parents Springtime messages:
 
My dear brothers and sisters; and my friends: We have reached the end of  the springtime messages of Christian Single Parents; however, I have already prepared messages for the summertime Christian Single Parents thread, and hope that you will join me in June for more messages about Christian Single Parents!