teach them diligently [reflect]


Welcome to the tenth installment of my Teach Them Diligently series. If you’re new here and would like to see the other topics, click below.

January [ironing]

February [the oven]

March [saving]

April [safety]

May [purging]

June [written correspondence]

July [cleaning the bathroom]

August [planning]

September [shopping on a budget]



One of my goals for this year is to continue teaching my children some skills to make them more independent of me. A focus of our learning around here is to take full advantage of all the learning we can in and around the home. In addition to math, science, and languages, I feel it’s my duty to help my children learn to care for their own needs.

Each month of this year, I am focusing on a different skill/chore and taking my time to instruct my children. This isn’t earth-shattering news. These aren’t difficult skills. No doubt generations of mothers before me have been doing this since the dawn of time. I have been slowly showing and teaching my children these things since they were tiny.

First it was to put away toys into baskets and bins and over the years that has evolved into doing their own laundry, loading and emptying the dishwasher, and making their own beds. As they are growing, so, too, should their level of involvement around the house.

Our kids do earn “commissions” for a few set chores each week, but the skills we are working on this year are “just because” skills. Right here I usually state my monthly objective with words like, “They will learn….because…” but this month, it’s more of “I hope to model this because it is vital in life…”

I want to live a life of thankfulness in front of my children. Even when life is full, busy, or tough, I want to show my children that we can still find the joy in our circumstances. There’s a phrase that says, “Hunt the good stuff.” And folks, well, there’s a lot of good stuff. Essentially, I wanted to make it a priority to REFLECT on the goodness of God and what He is doing in our lives. Often, it’s the little things we take for granted that end up having the most impact on us.

At the end of October, we borrowed an idea from Gretchen Rubin of starting a one sentence journal. The goal? Keep this little inexpensive journal in a prominent place and each day, we all add one sentence to it. Our focus is on finding the good; celebrating our blessings; and encouraging our family members with good news!



That’s it. This was a simple month of “teaching” this lesson. We can easily focus on the stresses and problems in our lives or we can do the opposite. I’ll be honest, when I feel frazzled and overwhelmed gratitude isn’t always my natural response. To me, one of the greatest and most measurable aspects of reflection, is that it gives us a vocabulary for our testimonies. Reflecting upon what’s right in your life helps to keep the focus on the Giver of good things!

This month’s focus wasn’t just for our children. It was mostly for me!

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