Monday, March 2, 2015

Help Me Get to Church on Time

I like to be on time.

And my husband really likes to be on time.

But somehow in twelve years of marriage I missed the fact that Ed's definition of "on time"  and my definition were not the same.

My goal is to get to church in enough time to walk (not run) inside, hang up my coat, and settle on the bench before the first song.

We have a twenty minute drive to church. So it is not unreasonable to me to think of leaving at 9:00 to be at church before the 9:30 service.

But typically, quite a bit before 9:00, Ed is herding the children into the van. When we pull into the church parking lot at ten minutes after 9, I groan. All I'm thinking about is the twenty extra minutes I will need to sit with a wiggly one-year-old on my lap who does. not. like. to. sit. (And all you who go to church with us know that is an understatement.)

A few months ago, we pulled into church at our typical time. I sighed and said, "We didn't have to leave home so early."

Ed looked at me and said, "This is when I like to arrive."

That is when I realized that my definition of "on time" and Ed's definition of "on time" were not the same. I'm not sure why I missed it all these years. And since I believe that I need to adapt to my husband's wishes as much as possible, that meant that my definition needed to change.

I did to some sleuthing. "When did your parents get to church when you were a boy?" I asked.

"Oh, we usually were at church so early that we sat in the car for a while before going in. And the years that my dad was a trustee, we were the first to get to church so he could unlock the doors."

Gulp. Ed's parents had six children. Plus they were dairy farmers who had cows to milk before church. If they could be the first ones to church (and their service began at 9:00 not 9:30) I don't think any excuse of mine is going to work.

And Ed must be passing on the early-to-church gene. Any time we are running close on time (not with Ed, of course, but when I'm driving the children somewhere) my children start hyperventilating if we are not at least ten minutes early.

Of course there are times when even the best laid plans go awry. Like the recent evening that I was taking the children to singing class only to find the van battery dead. Ed worked at jumping the battery but finally gave up and told me to take the truck. A few miles down the road he called to remind me that the truck was very low in gas and I needed to stop at the first possible gas station. That evening, we were not on time by anyone's definition.

The next week the children wanted to start out twice as early "just in case."

He has taught them well. They remember the Sunday morning a few months ago that we were headed to another church where Ed was to preach. As usual, I thought we left at a ridiculously early time. But halfway to church, we spotted some cattle dashing across a field almost to a very busy highway. We pulled over and with the help of blasts from our horn, were able to head the cattle back across the field away from the road. Ed considered his options. He is a farm boy enough to know that the cattle needed to get back in their pen but following those cattle across the muddy field in his dress shoes and suit didn't sound appealing.

Thankfully we spotted the farmer in a four-wheeler headed out of the barnyard and we could proceed on our way feeling like we helped to avert a disaster but the situation was now in good hands. And we were still the first people to church that morning. Ed pointed out to our children the wisdom in allowing extra time so that we had time to stop and help others.

So with all this pressure from my family, I need your help.

Tonight begins a week of revival services at our church. I know from experience that it is going to be hard to get out the door every night on time. Especially Ed's "on time" which will include being at the prayer meeting a half an hour before the service each night. (And less you get the wrong idea, Ed is awesome at helping wash up supper dishes and tie shoes to help us get out the door.)

I really want our week to go well. I know from experience that a mom who is frustrated and yelling for everyone to "hurry up and get ready" is not a good way to prepare for a revival service. 

What tips do you have to function well on a busy week of revival meetings? How do you organize your day to make your evening rush less stressful? 

I only have one tip - Start early. 

I learned this as a girl growing up in a house with only one shower for eleven people. As a farming family, everyone had to file through that one bathroom before church. If you happened to be one who didn't have chores, or who completed your chores early, you had better get your shower done at the earliest possible opportunity. Woe be to the one who is found in the shower if they had an opportunity to get it done earlier. The pounding on the bathroom door was warning enough to not allow that to happen again.

When my children were all young (those years that I had four children ages five and younger) starting early was the only way to save my sanity. Have you ever tried to get several sleepy, grumpy children through their bath while also attempting to fix supper? It doesn't work. I learned that on the nights that we were going away and the children needed baths, to give them their bath before their afternoon nap. Then when they woke up, I could read stories while watching supper and waiting for Ed to come home. It majorly lowered our stress level. After supper I could slip them into their church clothes (somehow dressing them before supper never worked) and quickly comb their hair.

Now that my children are older and can get their own showers, a lot of the craziness to get out the door has decreased. Fewer persons relying on me to find their shoes and button their shirts saves a lot of time, but still, starting early, earlier than I even think I need, is still a sanity saver.

So that is my tip - now please share yours!

And extra credit to anyone with a cure for one-year-olds who hate church. And sleeping pills don't count.


45 comments :

  1. I agree on starting early! I bath our children right after breakfast during a week like that, then take a shower while they nap in the afternoon. And i dress them to in Sunday clothes before we eat, but make them wear bibs! My seven year old hates that but the prospect of needing to change clothes if he drops food dampens the complaints! When hubby gets home he gulps some food, showers speedily, and out we go!

    Suppers are things from the freezer. Or sometimes i pack supper and we eat on the road. I do dishes before supper, then the plates etc. go in the dishwasher, and I can come home to a reasonable looking kitchen.

    We have an hour drive to church and a week of meetings is a stressful week.... unless I plan ahead and prepare for it! There's a little bit of a thrill, or feeling of accomplishment to have everyone in the van by 6:00 and arrive in good time. My dad and Ed's dad had something in common; we were often among the first 5 vehicles on the parking lot, and as children we balked about it. Life goes full circle; now I'm the one who likes to be at church 20 min early, 15 at the very least!!

    So best wishes for you this week. Just between you and me, I've often thought that whoever invented the idea of a week of consecutive evening meeting obviously did not have little children!!! And if you discover a secret for helping a one year old sit still, please clue me in. I need all the help I can get right now in that department.

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    1. I can't imagine having an hour to church - but you prove that it is possible! Thanks for sharing your hints - and understanding my lack of enthusiasm for this week! I know it will be worthwhile and we will be blessed - but there are certainly aspects that are hard as a mother of young children.
      Gina

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  2. This made me laugh.Cliff and Ed must be Brothers of the Clock! Cliff says laughingly "If you're not early, you're late! or If you're just ON TIME, you're late." We've had some laughs over the years at our differences. I also despise being late, but generally our arrival times might vary by 10 minutes.

    I must say that we are usually ready about 10 minutes before its time to head out the door. It's always been that way and I'm not even sure how it happens. (I actually feel guilty saying that cause I know it just isn't easy for some families.) Cliff has always been willing to help dress the boys when they were younger - I didn't have to do everything by myself.

    We have about 7 minutes to church. And our Sunday morning service begin at 9 am. Cliff grew up on a dairy farm, there were 8 siblings, 1 shower, and they drove an HOUR to church. And they were not late. And they were at nearly every service. However, there WAS chaos. So our goal has been to be early but avoid the chaos.

    We just had a week of revival meetings too. So I'll share what works for us.
    - Ask hubby what time he wants to leave. Plan your whole day around that time.
    - Keep your schedule very light for the week. Only plan projects that can be dropped quickly and have very little clean-up involved.
    - Plan a simple menu for the whole week.
    - I try to get my shower and hair combed before 5:00. If that means while the children are napping in the afternoon, that's when it happens. With the ages of our boys, I can usually get that done between 4:30 -5:00.
    - I start supper prep at 3:15 & have the kitchen cleaned up before supper is served. (We can eat at 5:30 which I'm sure helps a lot) After supper, one boy is on the schedule to help me clean up. We use the dishwasher and clean-up is quick and easy.
    - All the school boys get showers before supper. They are usually in PJ's for supper and then get dressed afterwards. Teeth get brushed before dressing too to avoid unwanted splatters. This has really cut down on the amount of laundry because they can wear their clothes more than once. Young children DO NOT smell stinky after 3 hours. =)
    - If your children need help choosing their clothes, lay their outfits out sometime during the day. This avoids the after supper "MOM!!! What am I supposed to wear??!!"

    I do think we need to make it matter of priority. We can be so many other places on time or early, but church services seem to be bothersome to try. Don't you think it could be a snare to get us all worked up and frazzled so that we can't even enjoy the service?

    As for that little 1 year old, well, she'll grow up one day soon. Its a season. Hang on! You'll both get there!

    This is very long. I'll stop now.

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    1. Thanks Starla - you have lots of great tips! I can tell you have been there!
      Gina

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  3. We are also among the "early to church" crowd. My husband was not raised that way, but he considers that if one is only "on time" for the service, one is already late! Our Sunday School (which we have prior to the morning service) starts at 9:45. We both teach Sunday School and have for many years. So he likes to arrive at church no later than 9:25. For a number of years when our kids were growing up we had a prayer time before Sunday School which happened at 9:15 and he liked to be early for that too. So you see we have a long history of being early.

    I also knew a family with a lot of children (7 or 8) that was always early. The mom shared with me that one of her secrets was getting everyone's church clothes ready the night before.

    Another thing that has helped me (at this point in life we usually have a couple of grandchildren here overnight on Saturday) is to have a set breakfast time. We are going to eat at 8 and that is that. We also have a set menu: waffles, bacon or sausage, juice, and fruit. That means there are no choices to make as far as food goes. They also know that we are going to be out the door by 9 if not before.

    Leaving the house by 9 (we live 15 minutes from church) has become even more important since we pick up my elderly dad on the way. He is very apt not to be ready when we get there, so we have to factor in some extra time there.

    For this week, where you are having these evening services, I have a couple of suggestions. First, get the clothes ready early in the day (or have the older kids get their own ready). Second, use the slow cooker! Plan supper to be ready earlier than usual if at all possible. Put it in the slow cooker early in the day. I would do simple meals such as soup and bread, or a one-pot meal and salad, or pizza and soup. Get your accompaniments ready ahead of time and even set the table well in advance or have one of the kids do it. Eating a little bit early (or if your hubby's work schedule doesn't allow for that, having everything ready so you can eat when he comes in the door) has been a lifesaver for me over time. 2 of my grandkids are here most Wednesday nights as well, to go to church with us. and supper that night is always the same: pizza and some kind of soup. Quick and easy.

    Well, those are a few of my thoughts. Can't help you with the wiggly baby!

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    1. Love the idea of using the crockpot this week! Thanks.
      Gina

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  4. I like your Start Early tip - I thought it was hard when we had 5 people and one shower! The tip that helps me is: Prioritize what's important. For example, we've found that it's important for us to have a hearty, hot breakfast to be ready for school/work. To save time in the morning, I got divided plastic lunchbox containers and I'll pack multiple lunches at a time, sometimes 2 or 3 days in advance. I used to worry that it wasn't going to be fresh or "as good," but it turned out to be fairly easy to find good foods that worked well, and everyone is happy. Or if we're getting ready for church - perhaps my daughter's hair could be braided or pulled back smoothly - but once she could take care of it herself, I let go of some of my particular favorites and am satisfied if it is clean and neat! (I guess it's like the idea of picking your battles... : ) - Suz

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    1. Prioritize - I like it. I too have found that mornings go better if I have some things for lunch packed the night before.
      Gina

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  5. One of my favorite tips for getting out the door for evening plans is to serve a crock-pot supper or a meal that is baked in the oven for several hours. This allows for the preparation and the kitchen clean up to all be done well ahead of the evening rush, even before school children get home and there may be homework to sort through.
    As for the one-year-old who doesn't like to sit, the best I can offer you is that I feel your pain! Our youngest is now three and doing much better (so, maybe I can also say that it will get better eventually if you stick with the battle!) but we have had more than our share of very difficult struggles with this battle.
    We have revivals in just two weeks so I will bet watching the comment with interest to see what we can implement for our family. God bless!

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  6. Fun article to read as I'm sure ( know from experience) we've all had to deal with trying to convince our young children to be sweet little angels and co-operate with mommy & daddy when trying to get somewhere on time. That being said, I don't understand why you'd say you need to change your idea of being on time to your husbands idea of being on time just to satisfy his wishes? You are your own person, you are a human being in your own right. You were born with a brain just like everyone else that god expects you use to it's full capacity to help make the world a better place. To shut that down, to talk as if it's your duty to do things your husbands way only, to ignore the fact you are just as important as your husband & every other human being on this earth where ones thoughts/ideas/actions are equally important, goes against everything god intended.

    Joycelyn

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    1. Joycelyn -
      I understand that this might be something that others disagree with but my goal is to make my husband successful. If he wants to get to church twenty minutes early, than I feel that I need to make that my goal as well. I chose to be my husband's helpmeet and this is one way that I can fulfill that role.
      Gina

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    2. Hello, Joycelyn, The options for this situation are: (1) insist on having your own way [possible arguments and hard feelings]; (2) ask to split the difference in time [hard on those who *must* be very early, as I know from with my mother, who liked to be places about an hour early]; realize that it isn't a matter to go to war over and accept the earlier time. A big part of a Christian marriage is putting your spouse first. I think Gina's a smart woman and a devoted wife.

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    3. Dear anon
      There's a big difference in being a devoted wife and a I must obey wife. There's also a big difference in "going to war" and reaching a compromise in a peaceful manner.

      A big part of a Christian marriage is both spouses treating each other as equal. A Christian marriage where one puts the other partners wants and needs first, thus denying themselves the free thinking/independence given them by god to use to better the world, is not a Christian marriage, it is a master/servant marriage. A marriage our loving God would frown upon.

      Joycelyn

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    4. My, my, I'm certainly thankful that Jesus didn't take his right to free thinking and independence. Imagine if he had decided that submission was too much to ask of Him!

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  7. This made me laugh because at our house I too came to realize that our definitions of "on time" weren't the same, only here the definitions are switched! :) I liked all the tips so far, don't think I have anything new to add...I think I need to come back later and see what all else gets suggested :) I think the biggest snare for me is sticking with the "prioritizing" and "starting early" ideas. It's so easy for me to get lax and slip back into the rut of not planning ahead and then things get chaotic and no one is in a good frame of mind for church!

    I doubt I have any new tips for the one year old either... I'm not big on taking snacks for my toddlers, but a week of meetings is often an exception to that rule in order to create a diversion! I also often try to have a new book or quiet toy that only gets played with at church. Sometimes stickers are a great thing to occupy a little one (for a short time at least) :) My 1 1/2 yr old has really enjoyed a Quiet Book at church - zipping the zipper, moving pieces around and hiding the kitty in different places. He only gets to have that book at church so that keeps it more special.

    I hope your week goes well! I actually have good memories as a child of those weeks of revival meetings. There was just something so exciting about going away every night, I always thought it was kind of fun! :)

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    1. I think we have a quiet book around here somewhere - but many of the pieces are missing. Maybe this would be a good week to find the book and replace the missing pieces! Thanks for the idea.
      Gina

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  8. We just began attending a new church and must now leave 20 minutes earlier than we are used to. Add to that a new baby that must nurse before leaving, and it's quite a challenge to get out the door! I'm eager to read all these comments. I'm going to echo having all the children's clothes ready ahead of time. Then they know exactly what to wear if they can dress themselves, and I can grab them to dress the littler ones quickly. I like crock pots too to prepare meals ahead of time.

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  9. -Crock pot suppers (I like to plan them out the week before)
    -Use disposable table settings for supper
    -Little's are dressed for church before supper & wear aprons to eat

    As for your 1 year old...is she learning what it means to sit still in family worship? That is where it begins. For this week- get some new, quiet toys at a dollar store (one for each evening) or barrow some toys from a friend.

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  10. Some tips for your 1 yr. old: ask a friend to swap diaper bags; new books do wonders for my little man. Also I pack little snacks for him during Revival week (raisins, cereals, marshmellows, etc., but nothing that will crunch and make heads turn) :)
    To cut down on laundry consider allowing your children to wear the same two outfits all week, alternating.

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  11. Growing up we were always one of the first to arrive at church and one of the last to leave. And we were there every time the doors were open. Mom always fixed simple meals on church nights like tuna salad,leftovers, or sandwiches.
    Somehow I didn't inherit this "early to church" gene. I am like you Gina-I get there in time just to sit down before the first song. As far as the squirmy kid-I need help too because we have 2 that just won't sit still. Keep trying is all I can advise-they will grow up way too soon!

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  12. I try to have breakfast prepared the night before such as a sausage/egg casserole or Amish baked oatmeal.
    As for getting a child to sit through church, I can relate because I have a very active 2 year old boy. The only thing that has worked for us is to be consistent in making our children sit quietly while we have family devotions. I usually put out a little blanket and have him sit during devotions or have him sit on my lap. If we practice this at home through the week, then he is much better behaved in church. If we neglect doing this and let him run around and play while we do our devotions than I usually have to leave the sanctuary so that he doesn't disrupt the service. Here is several tips I found that you could try from the Above Rubies website. http://aboverubies.org/index.php/2013-11-12-17-55-51/english-language/family-a-church/1073-family-a-church-children-in-church-how-can-we-keep-them-quiet

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  13. Crockpot suppers are a real time saver. I start preparing in the morning when revival is in progress and have everything done except getting dress before supper. I like to be the last one to start getting ready and then out the door we go. We drive country back roads for at least 45 minutes to get to church so we usually allow at least an hour. If weather is bad, maybe a little more. As far as children sitting still, I have no advice. I got to church a few weeks ago only to realize that my 8 year old son had taken a pair of handcuffs and hid them in his pocket. He pulled them out during Sunday School to "show" them to the rest of the class. Everyone else thought it was funny. I was not amused!

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  14. I'm envying your week of meetings because ours had to get cancelled this fall due to a sick minister. Watch out that your husband doesn't get a call! :)
    I start out by planning backward: If we are going to leave home at 6:30, I decide the children need to begin dressing at 5:30 (baths previous during the day at some point), then that means that we will eat dinner at 5:00 pm. We usually have a snack when we get home, but otherwise meals are simple.
    On weeks like that I just lay low and try to relax and not get a lot done. One of the benefits of homeschooling is that the children can sleep in a bit in the mornings, and don't get so worn out.
    We like to be early, and what is more important this week? You're doing a good job!

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  15. The thing that saved my sanity when we had revival meetings last month was a strict menu plan. I sat down Monday morning and wrote it all out, up to the following Sunday dinner. The kids school lunches, our lunches at home, the main supper dish and sides too. Having the food decisions off my brain helped me have a clear mind and calm outlook.

    Plus, as some others have said, don't expect too much of yourself in getting any other projects done this week! Have a good week...

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  16. The warm fireplaceMarch 2, 2015 at 6:00 PM

    I am not the best person to advise on time keeping, my surname is Lane and our church friends say it stands for ( late aways never early) lol. But keeping a small child occupied we took a drawstring bag in to church with quiet toys/book with pictures it really did help, it depends if your church allows such things.
    Sue

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  17. I've enjoyed this topic. Being on time does not come naturally in this house. :/ Dairy farming and only 2 of us to do chores doesn't sound like quite the excuse anymore!
    Quiet books was recently discussed in our email group. This site has really cute ideas for pages and has nice pictures. I'm eager to try making my own. I know it won't help you for this busy week but thought I'd share it anyway:
    http://quietbookblog.blogspot.com/p/template-
    directory.html?m=1

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    1. That website is aMaZiNg!! Makes me all in the mood to make a quiet book again, there's so many great ideas! Thanks for sharing :)

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  18. I once read a suggestion to take the time you want to leave and subtract 15 minutes for getting into the car and another 15 minutes for everything that could go wrong. So, if we need to be somewhere by 6:00 and it takes 15 minutes to get there, instead on leaving by 5:45, I plan on leaving by 5:15. I was suprised by the difference this thinking made in my ability to be on time. I think, however, I should add another 15 minutes, so we're actually a bit early, rather than flying in at the last minute.

    ~ daybreaking

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  19. I was going to say crock pot...but I see someone else has said that already in the comments. I try to remember to use it on Wednesday evenings and really should on Sunday evenings since we have services both those nights.

    As for the wiggly baby, the only thing that helped me at that stage was the ergo baby carrier...but it might not help if your child isn't used to it. Ours were since tiny babies and for some reason they were less wiggly in it at church. I don't think, however, this would work for all children. Can you pace back and forth at the back? I did a lot of that, too. My youngest is still very wiggly (age 3) and I find it very hard. This too shall pass...but in the moment it is very difficult.

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    1. 'Baby wearing' certainly helped keep mine happy during church and is now working for my grandson too! As the children grew we had a quiet book and lacing cards. One of mine crawled around, fortunately quietly, his head used to bob up every time there was an 'Amen'!

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  20. I think a orderly schedule and relaxing week make a happy family. God will bless your efforts of laying aside your other projects to hear His Word each evening. When I was growing up we had revivals every other year the week of Thanksgiving. The year it was our revivals we didn't have plans on Thanksgiving day but spent a relaxing day at home in preparation for more evenings away. I am enjoying the comments as we have meetings in 2 weeks. Also in the "heat of the battle" with a 1 yr. old.:)
    --Neighbor Stephanie

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  21. Something I once did for my children was to take an empty spice container, one with bigger holes in the lid works the best for little ones, and put some toothpicks in it and let them put them through the holes. A 1 yr. old might be a little young to do it (I forget what age this was good for!) but may enjoy watching or having you help her.

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  22. Not long ago, my minister's wife told me they always use paper plates on church evenings. That was all I needed to hear! No more guilt about the cost; I keep it simple and use paper as well. That's better than coming home after meetings to a pile of dishes.

    I'll echo the simple meals idea. For Sunday mornings, we ALWAYS have baked oatmeal that was made Saturday night, most times by my dearest. I'm still looking for more simple Sunday lunch ideas for the oven (no time bake).

    Lots of good ideas, and I'm listening closely to the 1 year old replies; I'm there, too!

    Deemommy

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  23. No children, we are older, but husband likes to be at church at 8am, an hour before Sunday School. So we leave 20 minutes to 8. When I was janitor, we would arrive at 7:30am. We often find things that need doing, like folding bulletins that did not get done, cleaning up a mess from previous night's youth group. One year the live Christmas tree had fallen over. Another time, a wedding party left ALL decorations up and I had to undecorate. Once recently I had to wipe down all the pews as the new janitor put too much lemon oil on them, and we did not want oil on people's clothes. So I see my husband's desire to go early as a chance to serve. And did I mention sharpening the pencils in the pews? : )

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  24. As to the baby, in our church, a mom with new twins, it seemed they pass them from family member to family member, aunts, uncle, grandma etc and now friends. We do have a nursery so usually for sermon time, they are in the nursery. Kids spend half the service with adults. 4 and over stay in the service.

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  25. I am afraid I have no advice. This did remind me of our experience worshipping with Fillipinos though. They were so distraught at our attempts to teach our children to sit through church that we finally partially gave in. There was no convincing the Fillipina Aunties that children in the US sit quietly like adults. Our poor children had a bit of a shock when we came home, and I needed to swallow some pride as a mom in order to be fair with the changing expectations.

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  26. Oh, how i can relate!! My husband is the exact same way and i am in your shoes. Here in our mission compound, thursday evening prayer mtng is a matter of walking to the next door neighbors. Needless to say, it has happened that i look outside and see my man and children walking to church while i'm still zipping my dress. We have had a few discussions ;) and i try very hard now to not be the last one ready, and he waits patiently outside the door. Give and take, right? I don't have a lot of advice, other than serve a very simple supper and in the states i would sometimes feed the children on ahead if he wasn't going to be in early. Supper would be eaten in shifts if needed while children got ready for church and then sat and looked at books til the whole family was ready. Of course, i have to rein that part of me that wants house perfect before we leave which means running around house straightening chairs and wiping counters. Instead i try and let it go and honor my man by walking out the door, regardless of how it looks behind me. Having older children with assigned chores does really help!
    Blessings! Darla

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  27. All of the clocks in our house are set at least five minutes fast. Sounds crazy, but it seems to help us!

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  28. This seems a simple suggestion, but I think valuable. My husband often prays for me and the wiggly one out loud before leaving for church. Even at a young age, I think this helps impress upon the child the importance of reverence at church. At the same time, it bolsters my spirit to deal patiently with the wiggles when tempted to act embarrassed frustration as I've found that my own frustration is easily sensed by our son and only works to produce more restlessness in him. Yes, it is nice when the dad can take the child, but with my husband a minister that is not always possible. But God can give a mother the grace needed.

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    1. I love this idea. What is it about father's whose words hold so much more weight? My children have always sat better for him than me - but it isn't often possible for him to take the little one.

      Thank you.
      Gina

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  29. Folks who arrive early for our services usually spend some of the time visiting before being seated. Most Sundays, youth are there early to have a prayer time, then are seated several minutes before starting time. Maybe there would be an appropriate place to have one of your older children take your little one to walk or crawl for part of those extra 20 min. before being seated for the service. Wishing you a blessed week!

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  30. Oh Gina!!! I was having a good belly laugh at your expense.....sorry.

    My name is Gaylene, I'm from Bastrop Texas. I have utilized your recipes, tips and information for about two years, but never wrote into the blog.

    Your husband and I must be long lost siblings!! I grew up in a preachers home, so I was trained early on what "on time" REALLY is.

    I have no real suggestions unfortunately except to retrain your personal "on time clock". Church at 9:30 really mean 9:15 etc. This held true for everything in our family.

    My husband and I drive all 400ft to our church across the street - we drive for ambulatory issues that my husband has. Anyway, by 9:10 I am ready to pack up the car and go. My husband says we will be too early and I say we will be on time!

    Praying that you will find an easy solution to your timeliness and wiggling one year old.

    Gaylene

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  31. I don't know if it will help to hear but someday these will all be funny stories and family memories, my (now adult) children still talk about how their dad had to get places 30 minutes early just in case! Now that it is just Hubby and I it is much easier and we are never late but of course it isn't nearly as much fun!! Try very hard to laugh and enjoy it!!

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  32. You're doing very well, Gina! I'm impressed. I appreciate your example of conforming your ideas to Ed's wishes. Keep up the good work!

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  33. We have the same problem, only I like to be early and Hubby is satisfied with being "on time", I would say that we are usually late but he would disagree. It is all a matter of ones perspective. Our children are like us in many ways. Sometimes Grace will say, "we're going to be late for church and Hubby will say no, we'll be right on time" and of course we are. All about perspective. I do agree with you. As a wife I feel it is our privilege to be a helper for our husbands. It gives me much pleasure to know I am making things easier for him. I do know that if we are stressing about getting ready to leave our entire household is stressing. Whether we like it or not, we usually set the standard for emotions in our home. I hope all goes well for you and your family this week. I have enjoyed reading all the comments. So much helpful information. God bless.

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I'm still learning how to be a joyful homemaker and I'd love to hear from you!

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