Parenting with Hope – An Interview about Special Needs

On today’s episode of At Home we’re talking with our good friend Christine Chicoine about parenting with hope. In our first ever interview, Christine talks candidly about her life as a mom to 5, one being a child with special needs. She shares the struggles, the joy, the blessings, and how God has shaped her through this process.
Christine also talks about homeschooling while walking through long hospital stays, and seasons of more days spent at home than days spent out with friends or on fun field trips. She shares what’s it’s like to have her child stared at for being different, and the. offers gentle advice for how both children and adults can act in those situations.
This episode is full of so much grace, strength, wisdom, and courage you are bound to be truly blessed by it. Whether you are walking your own journey of parenting a special needs child, or would like to learn more about that world, this episode will touch your heart in a special way.
Thank you Christine for sharing your beautiful heart with us and our listeners.

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Show Notes

Christine Chicoine: 

BookWalking with God through Pain and Suffering

Bible Verse – 2nd Chronicles 20:12

Online SchoolLogos Online School

Kristin Rogers: 

Books –

WONDER

Cerebral Palsy: A Complete Guide for Caregicing

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Holiday Traditions

On today’s episode of At Home, we’re talking about holiday traditions. Brianne Busky leads the discussion and we talk about everything from favorite childhood traditions, our present day family traditions, why holiday traditions are important, and where to start if you looking for new traditions to bring to your family.
It’s a really fun and encouraging episode.
Two things to take note of: first, there is some talk about Santa that might bring up questions for your littles that still put out cookies for Santa–fair warning. Second, the blooper reel at the end is worth listening to. You’ll get a real sense of what it’s like when we spend 6 minutes laughing uncontrollably over the silliest things. It happens often. And it’s lots of fun. And with that we’re wishing you all a wonderful start to the holiday season! Thank you for being part of our At Home family.

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Show Notes
Slow and Sacred Advent by Jennifer Naraki

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Integrating Arts

In this episode of At Home, Rachel Reeves leads the discussion on integrating the arts into our school curriculum. This episode is a lot of fun! I think there might be more passion, disagreement, and strong opinions in this episode than in the episodes on feminism, politics, or Christian liberty. Apparently we have a lot to say about art.
Or maybe we were just feeling extra spicy the morning we recored this one.
Either way, you are sure to come away with lots to think about as we discuss such questions as, “is art a luxury or is it essential”, “can anything be art” and “is art as important as math”? We also talk about teaching art history to our kids,  our own childhood art experiences, and some of our favorite art supplies and activities.
We can’t wait to hear your response to this episode
Thanks for listening!

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Show Notes:
Brianne Busky: 
Khan Academy Impressionism video
Greta Eskridge: A Child’s History of ArtAn Eye For Color: the Josef Albers Story, article in the Wild and Free Create Bundle,
Jennifer Naraki: Stockmar CrayonsLyra Pencils
Jennifer Dees: Art For Children book series

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Food Culture Part II

In this episode of At Home Jennifer Naraki leads the discussion on food culture. This is our second time discussing this topic, because Jenn really loves to talk about food. And this time we cover everything from teaching our kids to shop, to what it means to cook with love. She asks us to describe our morning breakfast rituals, our favorite meals, and how we include our kids in the food culture of our home.
This episode is sure to make you laugh, and sure to make you hungry. Enjoy!

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It can’t ALL be important….

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I was listening through many of our episodes and noticed how many times the word “important” was used when referring to different things. It’s “important” to expose your children to different food cultures, nature journals, keeping a garden, having children cook meals, art, nature groups, having dinner at the same time each evening… you get the picture?

I started to grow a concern that we could possibly, and unintentionally,  be discouraging other moms! Do you guys ever walk away feeling you don’t have the time, ability, resources or budget to make all these “important” things happen? Do you start to feel like you’re unable to offer things to your children that are being held high by these crazy podcast ladies? I’ll be honest, I have felt something similar to that, sitting right there at the table with my friends. So, I get it.

Here is the thing though. We are six ladies with six different perspectives. We have six different families. We have six different budgets, available time, upbringings and marriage dynamics. All these things, and others,  form the ebb and flow of our homes. All these things form what we sift through and bring to the top and title “important”. That will look different for every family. There are things I will probably never call important in my family, that is important to another. There are some things that won’t be important to my home life because it’s simply not possible. There are things that won’t ever be labeled important in my life, because I don’t want them to be or don’t see the value in them as another person does.  THAT’S OKAY!

Please keep two things in mind:

  1. We are offering our different perspectives and why we have placed value on certain things in our home and family. It’s not law. It’s not what we think everyone has to do. It’s not the standard.  It’s our personal values we have knit together in our own families for different reasons. Please don’t be discouraged by it. Take it or leave it. Be inspired or laugh at it. Start doing it or put it in the “nope, not for me” file of your mind. We might try to nudge you to see why we have placed value on it, but it’s not authority.
  2. On the other hand, if it’s the word of God. If it’s truth, council or ideas deduced from the bible…feel the weight of it. We hope that if God says it’s important, you will label it the same in your heart and home. We all need to feel the conviction or grace that comes from the biblical perspective. Starting with the six of us gathered around that table.

We don’t take this platform lightly and have felt the weight of it on many levels. We want to be faithful and encouraging. We need you guys to be great discerners. We need you guys to give us the benefit of the doubt or ask us if you have a concern.  We only have so much time to cover things in our 30+ minute episodes. To give all the clarities, contexts and qualifications is a luxury we don’t have and that can feel unsettling at times. Hence, why I’m writing this blog post.

Please, don’t add unnecessary weight to your already full load of parenting. Make sure you’re discerning between preferences of us moms and instruction from scripture.

We are FOR YOU! We pray for you guys! We want to bring good things to your day! Thanks for letting me get this off my heart. Hope it helps. It did for me.

Work in Progress,

Kristin Rogers

 

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Creating a Nature Group

In this episode of At Home, Greta Eskridge leads the discussion on “Creating a Nature Group”. After getting questions about this topic from so many of our listeners, Greta was really excited about this episode.
She dives right in with a discussion about why nature study matters. And then we go on to discuss everything from the ideal number in a nature group, how to keep people invested in the group, and what our nature study days look like. We share a little bit about taking babies and little ones out on nature days, as well as some of our favorite nature day essentials.
There was so much material to cover in this episode, that we just scratched the surface. Be sure to look at the show notes for our nature day essentials, and for a special blog post next week with even more information about creating your own nature group.
We so hope this episode will inspire you to get out in nature with your kids, and your girl friends. Because, like Richard Louv says, “Time in nature is not leisure time; it’s an essential investment in our chidlren’s health (and also, by the way, in our own).” Cheers to nature groups!

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Show Notes
Greta Eskridge:
Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv
Jennifer Dees:
A Charlotte Mason Education by Catherine Levinson
Kristin Rogers:
At Home Podcast episode Hands On Nature

Our Nature Day Essentials

Greta Eskridge:
Favorite Lunch: pack a fresh baguette in your backpack, and some cheese and salami or turkey in a small cooler bag, and assemble sandwiches on the trail. Just rip off a hunk of bread, stuff some meat and cheese inside–no plates required! It will save you from making sandwiches ahead of time, and from soggy sandwiches. The best!
Favorite Backpack: Jansport Adobe Heritage series–perfect for packing that baguette!
Favorite Phone Carrier: running waist pack –great for easy access for lots of picture taking
Favorite Baby Carrier: Ergo baby carrier — I didn’t have an Ergo baby carrier until my last baby. Having him in that carrier made a tremendous difference to me on long hikes.
Favorite Tips for Hiking With Little Ones: 1.  Get your little ones a small backpack and put a lightweight water bottle and favorite snack inside it. Get them used to carrying their own supplies when they hike. 2.  Start with short hikes, in a place that feels safe and comfortable for all of you. Nature centers are great places to begin. As you all get better at hiking, you’ll be able to venture into wilder places and hike longer. But don’t be afraid to start small and grow into hiking.
Favorite Field Guides: foldable, laminated field guides like this one

Kristin Rogers:
Favorite Water Bottle: for ice cold water ( Worth carrying weight) Hydro Flask
Favorite Tools for Helping Kids on Hikes: I carry my 8 year old on my back or pull her in my all terrain wagon when her foot/leg brace hurts her – Ergo Carrier  All terrain Wagon
Favorite Binoculars: like these

Brianne Busky: 
Favorite Nature Day Tip: Everyone carries their own backpack!

Jennifer Naraki:
Favorite Water Bottle: Hydroflask

Jennifer Dees: 
Favorite Field Guides: I like to get super local field guides for the areas we are visiting. I usually find them at nature centers.

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Late Night Ramblings

In this episode of At Home, we stayed up real late.
It was something like our 5th recording of the night, and it was after midnight.
Some of us were tired.
Some of us were very tired.
So we decided to record an episode where we talk about a variety of light hearted topics, where we could laugh a lot, and where, hopefully, you could all get to know us a little bit more.
Or at least get to know us in our tired states.
We call this episode “Late Night Ramblings” and we hope you enjoy it!

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Promoting a Peaceful Marriage

For this episode of At Home, you better get out your tissues!
That’s right, this one is a tear jerker. And it’s not just Greta crying this time.We were all in tears at some point in this episode.
But rest assured, its chock full of such goodness that you’ll find the tears are worth it.
Brianne Busky does a beautiful job leading this discussion, one she tells us she did not take lightly.
We start with some sappy, funny, and touching stories about our marriages and husbands, and then dive into some of the real issues we all face in marriage. Brianne goes through some questions sent in by our listeners, such as, what do you do when you disagree, what about when your husband fails, and what are things you do to promote a peaceful marriage. We share some of our favorite scriptures and books about marriage. And we talk about the hard times too. Because we know marriage is not immune to struggle.
Like Brianne says at the beginning of the episode, we don’t have all the answers or a magic formula for a perfect marriage. We’re just 6 girlfriends sitting around a table talking real about our own marriages and the things that we’ve learned over the years. We hope very much that you will find it uplifting, encouraging, and helpful.

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Show Notes
Brianne Busky:
Reforming Marriage by Douglas Wilson
Federal Husband by Douglas Wilson
Homemaking by JR Miller
The Fruit of Her Hands by Nancy Wilson
Sermon: Reforming Marriage #1
Jen Dees:
My Life For Yours by Douglas Wilson
Jen Naraki:
Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
The Home Beautiful by JR Miller
Greta Eskridge
CS Lewis quote on marriage

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Feminism

In this episode of At Home, Rachel Reeves tackles a big subject: feminism. But Rachel handles it in such an approachable, thoughtful, and honest way, that we all ended up enjoying a conversation that at first felt a bit overwhelming.
Rachel begins by explaining the history of feminism and how it has changed over time. And then we go on to discuss such ideas as: can women have it all, do women need men, are there dangerous ideas in feminism, and why submission has gotten such a bad name.
Its a pretty loaded episode!
And by the end of it, all of us had cried once. Or twice. So please don’t mind the sniffing. Or our choked up voices. We may have new mikes to help us sound professional, but we’re still just real life women who are sometimes can’t help crying over a quote from a great book!

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Show Notes:
Rachel Reeves:
Prager University–The Wage Gap
Prayer University–Feminism 2.0
Book–Subverted
Jennifer Naraki
What does the Bible Say About Feminism”?
Jen Dees:
Top Five Feminist Myths of All Time:
Prager U: Gender Wage Gap Myth
Kristin Rogers:
“I’ll take the whiskey”
“The Valiant Woman”
Greta Eskridge:
What Jane Austen can teach us about modesty
Quote from Caddie Woodlawn
“It’s a strange thing, but somehow we expect more of girls than of boys. It is the sisters and wives and mothers, you know, Caddie, who keep the world sweet and beautiful. What a rough world it would be if there were only men and boys in it, doing things in their rough way! A woman’s task is to teach them gentleness and courtesy and love and kindness. It’s a big task, too, Caddie–harder than cutting trees or building mills or damming rivers. It takes nerve and courage and patience, but good women have those things. They have them just as much as the men who build bridges and carve roads through the wilderness. A woman’s work is something fine and noble to grow up to, and it is just as important as a man’s.”

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Martinis and Yoga Pants

In this episode of At Home, Jen Dees leads the discussion on Christian liberty. Or, as we like to call it, “Martinis and Yoga pants”. We decided to cover this topic, even though it can sometimes be a tough one to wade through, because we feel that it’s a conversation worth having. And we don’t want to shy away from the hard stuff.
Jen was excited to cover this topic with us and dives right in. A few of the things we discuss are: drinking alcohol, modest clothing, healthy eating, and humanly raised food. We also talk about not judging others in their freedom, but not causing others to stumble in ours.
There was so much to cover, and we felt like we hardly scratched the surface!
Ultimately, we all agree that our hearts must be sensitive to God’s leading in this area. We hope this episode will give you food for thought as you listen with a cup of coffee or glass of wine in hand. Or on your earbuds while you are out for a run. Or standing at the sink, doing dishes. No matter what you are doing, we so appreciate you letting us into your lives and homes. It’s a privilege we don’t take lightly.

And don’t forget to listen to the end for the quick question round! There are some surprises you’ll just not want to miss. (hidden talents) And Rachel’s late night recording frustrations coming out at the end. It’s a fun one!

Show Notes:
Jen Dees:
Bible Study on Wine and the Bible by Mike Dees
Brianne Busky:
Bikinis and Modesty from Desiring God blog
Jennifer Naraki:
Law and Liberty: A Biblical Look at Legalism
Scriptures referenced
Galatians 5:6
Galatians 5:13
Ecclesiastes 9:7
Psalm 104:14-15
Amos 9:14
Proverbs 25:16
1 Cor 10:23
Greta Eskridge:
What Jane Austen Can Teach Us About Modesty

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