Adopting, Character Training, Selecting Books: 4 Moms Q & A

moms of many manage

Becky asked,

Has your family ever considered adopting and what service projects do you guys do?

Yes, we’ve considered and have actively pursued adopting on several occasions. So far, the Lord has firmly closed the door, but we remain open to this possibility.

As far as service projects, we believe that God has specifically called our family to serve the body of Christ by encouraging other families as they walk the road less traveled. For us, this means opening up our home to groups and individuals, facilitating ways for families to meet for times of encouragement and biblical teaching (including camp outs, an Above Rubies retreat, and a much talked about, but hasn’t yet happened family conference here in the Knoxville area) and preparing and serving lots and lots of food.

So far because of our family dynamic of having many small children, other acts of service have been mainly limited to financially supporting those who are on the front lines.


Blair wondered about,

How to deal with family and friends who question about having more kids.

I was fairly certain that the 4 Moms have posted about this before, but when I checked our handy-dandy list of ALL the topics we’ve ever covered (complete with links), I couldn’t find it on there.Β  So here goes.

We haven’t had much of a problem with it honestly. My mom is the youngest of 10, so she can’t really say anything, right Mom? There have been times when one person or the other hasn’t been thrilled when we’ve announced a new arrival, but we just allow that (or try to allow that) to roll off of our backs.


Emily said,

I’ve read on your blog before that at times when your children are struggling with character/behavior issues you guys put everything on hold to work on the issues at hand. I’m curious how that looks.

Of course it looks different depending on the issue, the number of children struggling and the number/ages of the children in our family. In other words there isn’t a set way the day looks.

The point of “putting everything on hold” is so that the children will have my undivided attention all day so that we can really focus on the character training that was lacking. At the end of the day, if we’ve worked hard on character training, we shouldn’t be discouraged with not getting much else done.

These are some possible scenarios:

Cancel any outside of the house activities. If friends were coming over or if we had lessons or cross country practice, we’d cancel or chose not to go. We did not to run errands or grocery shop. This ensures that the focus stays where we want it to stay, on character training.

Front: L-R: Alyssa (12), Carter (10), Sadie (9), Matthew (13) Back: L-R: Amber (16), Mark, Kaitlin (14)

Front: L-R: Alyssa (12), Carter (10), Sadie (9), Matthew (13)
Back: L-R: Amber (16), Mark, Kaitlin (14)

Eliminate any other things that would distract me or make it difficult for me to stop what I was doing to handle the correction and teaching of our children. For me this generally includes school work, computer, phone, or other mind-consuming projects, etc. For you the list may be different.

Generally, we would tackle some type of cleaning or organizing project around the house. Everyone would be working together on the same thing and we would all be in the same area all day. Then every time a character issue needed to be addressed, I’m able to address it and since I’m not trying to tackle all of my regular duties I’m not frustrated (hopefully) that we really didn’t get anything done that day.


Stephanie asked,

What is your favorite food?

First of all, thank you Stephanie! πŸ˜‰

I have two, chocolate and ice cream. Of course to qualify the ice cream should have chocolate in it.


Sarah asked,

How do you make “one on one” time with your husband and each of your children?

Here’s what the 4 Moms have had to say about that; Spending Time Alone with Your Husband and Spending Individual Time with Kids.


Nichole asked,

How do you encourage sibling relationships?

I hope that you find these posts to be helpful:


Tosha asked,

How do you choose good age appropriate books?

We have a few friends who we trust with book recommendations and I do a lot of pre-reading. I generally pre-read, or get input from others on Sonlight’s recommendations. (In this post I share the Sonlight books that we don’t read.)

Most of it comes down to doing your research, pre-reading and finding like-minded friends from whom to get suggestions. You may also like these book lists that I’ve posted.

  1. Favorite books for Preschoolers
  2. Favorite books for Beginning Readers
  3. Character book list

We are a lot more free with what our older children read. We gently guide and with books that we haven’t read, we trust their judgement to come to us if there is something that is inappropriate.


Visit the other moms of many to see what they have to say:

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9 Responses to Adopting, Character Training, Selecting Books: 4 Moms Q & A
  1. Emily M
    February 21, 2013 | 10:38 am

    Thank you for answering my question! πŸ™‚


  2. Susan
    February 21, 2013 | 11:20 am

    Thank you for sharing your wisdom! I enjoy reading your blog! πŸ™‚


  3. Stephanie
    February 21, 2013 | 12:57 pm

    Yum πŸ™‚


  4. Lisa
    February 22, 2013 | 1:23 pm

    In the picture, it looks like Amber is taller than her dad! Is that for real, or is she standing on a hill? LOL!

    We aren’t quite there with our boys yet, but I looked at the oldest who is thirteen and he and I are definitely eye level. It’s a strange feeling!


  5. Bunny
    February 22, 2013 | 3:45 pm

    Cheaper by the dozen, just thought you need to know.


  6. Amber
    February 22, 2013 | 5:31 pm

    Thanks for the link. I’m rather behind on that but do still try to at least peek in on you 4 and hope to catch back up eventually. I thought you all had covered handling others’ questions about large families also, but I don’t see it as a topic covered thoroughly on a set day. Maybe I haven’t gotten to that one, but it does seem to be covered here and there by some of you in the Reader Question posts. On June 23, 2011, Smockity gave a brief answer to dealing with those who think you shouldn’t have so many children: “We pretend not to notice.” :)Then later she addressed a similar question here in more depth:
    Life in a Shoe addresses relating with others who don’t share her views on family planning here:
    There are also some topics in the Reader Questions related to dealing with doubts, your own and possibly those of others. Many other topics covered may be tangentially related, depending on what the exact questions are. I didn’t scour through everything so it’s quite possible there’s more there directly related also. You ladies are writing a regular encyclopedia. πŸ™‚


  7. Serenity
    February 22, 2013 | 9:06 pm

    As always, I loved this post! I thought of a service project that our American Heritage Girls Troop did that your family might enjoy. We contacted the local Department of Children and Family Services and they agreed to let us make pillow cases and no sew blankets for children that enter the foster care system. We made a night of it and before we began we prayed over the material that the children would be comforted by God’s love and come to know Him. Inside the pillow cases we put the no sew blanket, a new stuffed animal and a book (like Green Eggs and Ham). We also pray over each blanket for the specific child to receive it πŸ™‚ Each child that comes into foster care in our county gets a stuffed pillow case. We have done this for three years and it has been an amazing opportunity!! Before I had my children I worked as a social worker for the state and the children that come into foster care typically come with nothing but the clothes on their backs. We teach our children that we are to look after the orphans and widows and this is a great way to put that into practice πŸ™‚


  8. Cheryl
    February 25, 2013 | 3:17 pm

    Hi Kimberly, on a different note, I know you’ve said you make your own sour cream & I am trying to figure out how to do that. I’ve found your recipes for cottage cheese, buttermilk and yogurt, but can’t find the sour cream. Help! Can you tell me how to make it (do I need a starter?)? I would really appreciate it! Thanks, Cheryl


  9. Tara
    February 25, 2013 | 8:51 pm

    Kimberly, you are so humble! I think it would be very hard to write a blog on raising a family, as you do. As my husband puts it, communication just isn’t clear by texts or emails. It is hard to really read what people are saying! Keep on sharpening us ladies! I benefit so much from your wisdom and experience! Thank YOU for going out on a limb, so to speak, with your blog, risking all the misunderstanding to help others like myself!!!


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