Guitar for the Little Man

Summer is almost over here in the Philippines, soon school will kick off. But since we are homeschooling this year, we started early. Part of our homeschooling is to enroll the little man in an enrichment program. We are leaning towards a music enrichment program and I am contemplating of exposing him to musical instrument not just to develop the musicality, but also to help nourish his intellectual & social literacy.

We were overwhelmed with the variety of 6 string guitars that are available online. It seems that it’s me who enjoys most scouting for kid friendly guitar designs. Look at this cute designs I found from an online store I visited.

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photo from google image

I’m sure the little man would love to have his favorite tank engine Thomas printed on his new guitar. Hoping we could find one.

 

Do Not Worry

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Do not worry. That was the words I got from our senior pastor Peter the afternoon I saw him at a hospital . I just had my stress test done, and while on my way out of the building I saw Pastor Peter going out from physical rehab center. I took the fire exit stair which he also did, and that’s where the conversation started.

Hearing those words from a great servant of God really meant soo much to me. I believe it was not a coincident, but God purposely allowed me to see Pastor Peter to convey His message to me. After the sudden death of my father, I have been worrying about a lot of things. I have been holding God’s promises to us in the Bible, but despite knowing some of the many promises He has for us, but I just can’t get away from worrying. I felt loved and special, having heard those words from a great servant of God.

Matthew 6:25-27  “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?

How could I say I have faith in God, but keeps on worrying about my family’ future. I realized that I have not fully surrendered to God and really trust Him. I am still relying on my own strength and ability. Matthew 11:28 says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” I know how famous this verse is, but arrogant I am neglecting and forgetting God’s invitation and promise. It is during our weakest that God reveals Himself to us. I thank you Lord, for the comfort and for letting me know that it is in your presence alone that I can experience true peace.

Zian Turns 3

Our sweet and bubbly little boy turns 3 today. And to celebrate this milestone, we had a simple celebration at home with our family and relatives.

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I am praying that you grow loving God little man. Stay sweet and bubbly. I thank God for you and for keeping our home happy and sometimes chaotic. We love you!

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We are also celebrating my Father’s 61st Birthday all together. We miss you a lot Tatay!

61st

It would have been your 61st today Tatay. I am trying to muddle through the sad feeling celebrating your 61st without you on earth because I know, you are celebrating it with joy and there is nothing better than celebrating it with Jesus. And that is something we should celebrate as well.

Paul said in Philippians 1:21, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. Although it maybe painful to the ones left behind, but this passage is just telling me that death is not the end. It is simply a beginning of a much much better life in eternity.

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photo from google images. poem by Kathleen Viaes

 

Officially Homeschooling

In preparation for our “big move” we are pulling out our eldest Zoe from a local Chinese school so we could start homeschooling. Yes we are officially homeschooling our preschooler. This is a great challenge for our family especially me, being the newly appointed teacher and my husband being the principal. LoL…

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In a country where conventional schools are mainstream, it is not surprising that most parents wonders about homeschooling whenever they heard it. Well, my eyes rolled the first time I heard it in our church. The church that my family is attending is the founder of one of the homeschool institution in the Philippines. It is through their advocacy, that I had a glimpse of what homeschool is, and also I feed my curiosity by further research.

Okay, allow me to give you a brief information about homeschooling. In the Philippines, homeschooling is supported and recognize by the Department of Education. Article IV of the Philippine Constitution states that the quality of education should be made accessible to all Filipinos, including self-learning, independent and out-of-school study programs.The Department of Education defines homeschooling as a home-based education which relies on the active participation of the parent as teacher to his child. A one on one tutorial type of teaching. The parent is at the center of the educative process of the child from which the home educated child acquires the necessary skills to develop his full potential to become a self-propelling, fulfilled and contributing member of the community.

Over the recent years, homeschooling in the Philippines has proliferated. When I attended the TMA Homeschool Intro, parents were asked why they are considering homeschooling their children. Most parents leaning towards values formation as the main reason for homeschooling. I share the same thought, and I believe that as a parent, we should be the number one responsible in building our children’s values foundation. I think this is the main reason why homeschooled children are increasing in numbers in the Philippines.

So, who are qualified to homeschool a child? As per DepEd, anyone who is a degree holder can homeschool a child. You can enroll your child in DepEd accredited homeschool. We are currently enrolled in The Master’s Academy. There are other schools like Heritage Academy, Homeschool of Asia Pacific, Victory Christian International School and Catholic Filipino Academy that offers homeschool program.

How about the misconceptions? The most common misconception I heard before we decided homeschooling, is the lack of socialization. I even had marveled on that. Well I still have to find out for myself if this is true. Right now, this is how I see it, homeschooling families get to join a play groups and coops that meets at least once a week. This is where the child gets to meet other homeschooled kids. Plus you can also enroll the kids in different enrichment programs so that doesn’t leave the kid confined in your house.

I know, there are lot’s challenges we will be facing in the next days to come. I still don’t know how to start, but I am in constant research and reading homeschooling blogs is a big help. And above all this preparation, we keep on praying for guidance and wisdom in order for us to became a good parent-teacher to our kids. I look forward to a positive outcome. Help us Lord!

Proverbs 31:10-30

10 Who can find a wife of noble character?
For her value is far more than rubies.
11 The heart of her husband has confidence in her,
and he has no lack of gain.
12 She brings him good and not evil
all the days of her life.
13 She obtains wool and flax,
and she is pleased to work with her hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships;
she brings her food from afar.
15 She also gets up while it is still night,
and provides food for her household and a portion to her female servants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
from her own income she plants a vineyard.
17 She begins her work vigorously,
and she strengthens her arms.
18 She knows that her merchandise is good,
and her lamp does not go out in the night.
19 Her hands take hold of the distaff,
and her hands grasp the spindle.
20 She extends her hand to the poor,
and reaches out her hand to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household,
for all of her household are clothed with scarlet.
22 She makes for herself coverlets;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is well-known in the city gate
when he sits with the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and honor,
and she can laugh at the time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and loving instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the ways of her household,
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed,
her husband also praises her:
29 “Many daughters have done valiantly,
but you surpass them all!”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is fleeting,
but a woman who fears the Lord will be praised.

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One Month

It is exactly 1 month since you “went home”. I am missing you a lot Tatay! Missing your giggles whenever you are amazed with my boys. Missing the simple conversations, the ice cream; the boys miss it a lot, your text messages. I miss dining out with you and I miss kissing your hand. I will miss you forever!

I may not fully comprehend it, but I know God has its own reason why you have to leave too soon. Painful it is but I know you are in a much much better place.

Hello Homeschooling!

We are having difficulties of finding a school for our preschooler in Dubai. I can’t believe that most affordable schools are filling in fast. International schools are expensive and we cannot afford to send our kids to such school. And so, we are sticking to our second option which is Homeschooling. I have been wanting to homeschool Zoe, but I needed to work full time, so we send him to a conventional school. This time, we’ll get to homeschool him once we landed in Dubai.

Last week, I was able to attend the Homeschool Intro at The Master’s Academy. They’re the pioneer homeschool institution in the Philippines and they’ve been around for 16 years now. I’ve learned about TMA through our church, CCF being it’s founder.

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Homeschooling in the Philippines is supported by Department of Education. Article IV of the 1987 Philippine Constitution decrees that the quality of education should be made accessible to all Filipinos, including self-learning, independent and out-of-school study programs. And as long as the parents are a degree holder, you can homeschool your kids.

As TMA defines, Homeschooling is an education where the parent creates an ideal climate for their children to achieve success. This climate consists of a conducive home, intentional parents, a customized curriculum, a comprehensive support system and clear goals towards true success. I’ve only known a few parents who homeschool their kids. And their reason for homeschooling their kids is to ensure that their kid’s values formation is directly influenced by them (parents). And that is something agreeable and unarguable. Being a parent, we are the number one responsible of our children’s character.

Homeschooling is also a cheaper option compared to conventional schools. With the increasing tuition fees, I guess a cut down expense on uniform and school service as well as baon is a big savings. But as the President of TMA Edric Mendoza puts it, financial aspect should not be the main reason for homeschooling. It is the character formation that we should focus on.

This is an all new thing to us. My husband and I are really looking forward for this new challenge. I am not skeptical about this, but sometimes I’m in doubt about my ability to teach. But I am trusting God that he will give me and my husband wisdom and strength to get through this and be successful homeschool parents.