Feasts - Overwhelming?

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Julie in MN
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Feasts - Overwhelming?

Unread post by Julie in MN »

my3boys wrote:I'm looking at my CtG and Frist manuals to start this fall and feeling overwhelmed by them. There looks like a lot of activities to plan and organize and I am doubting my ability to pull it all together. Is it easier than it looks? Any advice for the organizationally disabled?
Hi Alison,
When I started CTG, I was very intimidated by the feasts & didn't do the first Sabbath, and attended a Messianic service for the second (rather than doing it ourselves). In that way, I eased into our year. And seeing others perform the service made me much more relaxed. Each Jewish family's feast will be as different as each Christian family's worship. It doesn't have to be as perfect as I had worried. In fact, we attended a Passover feast with a Jewish family a couple of weeks ago, and they had to run to the kitchen for the bone they forgot, and they decided to shorten some things when it got long, and were otherwise casual with things. But the prayers & the teaching of the next generation to remember God's acts were there.

I'll sheepishly bow out now, since I haven't taught 1st :)

Julie
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baileymom
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Re: feeling overwhelmed

Unread post by baileymom »

We didn't do 1st and CTG but we did do K and CTG this yr. It was a little overwhelming at first, but it is doable.

I agree with some of the other moms...the Biblical Feasts were the most stressful for me. We ended up only doing a Sabbath and Rosh Hashanah. They are a lot of work, especially since we are not used to them. The good thing is...they come back around every year, and after learning so much in CTG, it will be easy to celebrate/learn about each Biblical Holiday as they come up again.

We also struggled with Science and Art in CTG...I learned to just pick 1 assignment off the weekly grid (there are 2 assignments for each in each weekly grid) and not feel too guilty about not getting EVERYTHING on the grid done.

The TM eases you into the school yr (CTG), so you will be able to work it all out slowly.
Kathi - graduated 1, homeschooling 6, preschooling 2, growing 1
tiffany
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Re: feeling overwhelmed

Unread post by tiffany »

I am not a high energy mom in the least, but I must say that I am glad we did the feasts. I would try to eliminate other extras if need be. If there are opportunities to do something outside the home with a Messianic Jewish organization, that would be great. We did ours at home and I had morning sickness through some of it. I can remember being glad when the last feast was done, but I wouldn't trade any of the memories we have. The kids LOVED it! I even made my own challah bread, and I never make bread. That I know you can easily buy if you look around. There was just such a special closeness of the whole thing. Feeling really connected to our family and to God all together. For the feasts I really looked over the info. well ahead of time to prepare. I think that helped. For the festival of booths, we didn't make a booth, we used my kids playset. Priceless I tell you. :-) Makes me smile to think about it.

We do not do every activity or item in the manual. I don't have to check off every box. We did skip the tabernacle, because by then I had moved from morning sickness to other pregnancy things. I actually have all the materials so we'll get that next time around. I might try to pull it out for my daughter next year when she does HS Ancients.

I've been through 1st once and am about to go through it again. I think for my next 1st grader, I am going to start math over the summer, so we will have a head start. You might want to try that. I also bought a few math literature titles so I would have some on hand.
Tiffany
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TriciaMR
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nervous to start CTG

Unread post by TriciaMR »

Cyndi (AZ) wrote:I've never been nervous at the start of a school year, but this one has me just feeling unprepared and so unqualified. I'm wishing my dd could be 1st grade again and not 4th. CTG is such a big switch from ECC that I can't even make myself look at the books. The whole Celebrating Biblical Feasts thing has me petrified. I'm dragging my feet about prepping the school room. I was on a roll sorting and organizing until the box of books came, then I put the brakes on. What is wrong with me?! :~

Did anyone else have jitters going from ECC to CTG? Is the schedule that much more intense? Do the Feasts take up a lot of time outside of school time? I can't rely on my dh's schedule for him to always be there on nights or weekends; he gives us lots of flex time when he can, but he's a very busy man. I guess that's a cop-out on my part because I know we could do these things without him. Why do local homeschool support groups go on break during the summer . . .
I do it EVERY year (panic, that is)... It's okay. Just enjoy what you can do. Maybe you'll have other months where you go back and say, "Okay, now we have the time. Let's go back and do a Sabbath or a Feast of Trumpets."

Also, DON'T DO IT ALL. Don't try to do EVERY.SINGLE.THING.IN.THE.FEASTS.BOOK. Marie usually has simplified instructions in the TM for each feast that make it much more manageable for those of us who aren't used to doing these things. Each feast is a time to be blessed by God and bless each other. Enjoy it. Smile at it. Laugh together. Take pictures. Put them on your blogs.

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
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cbollin

Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by cbollin »

Cyndi, cyndi, cyndi

(((hugs))) girl friend, do you need a trip down Crystal memory lane? Is the Biblical feast book a problem? It can be if you let it. so don't let it.

The last time I did CTG, I started while we had our house staged for selling. packed up during week 4. week 5 and 6 were done here in memphis. ok.. found the post... it looks like I wrote that 17 days before I got the moving truck. wow. you keep in mind - remember how stressed I was? remember my daily crying fits? those feasts were a break in life that let me sit for a few minutes while solo parenting while moving out of state.
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... =25#p53005

just start singing it now, Cyndi... cue the Steve Martin King Tut
how can CTG be that bad if remember that song?? LOL!
I could write a parody for you... let's see... uhhhh... creation .. to the... Greeks... wait Greece, Grease.
yes... it might take me a while though... oh no..... the heat got to me...
maybe I should log out while I'm behind on the songs. but if it makes you laugh a little.. that's what's important.

honestly though, I think CTG is lighter than ECC. science is easier, less times per week. bible and history are so close together in subjects...

hang in there. (((hugs)))) I know what you mean about when they start 4th grade. my youngest should be in 4th... but
love and hugs.

-crystal
Julie in MN
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by Julie in MN »

I was nervous. Nervous but very happy -- since I was going to get to take my ds through the OT, in order. Here's a place I shared how we eased into the feasts:
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=7567
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 962#p51357
(I'm sure you've seen our tabernacle photo: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v328/ ... g_1824.jpg )

Here are some ideas for the Sabbath and fall feasts, to get some more visuals:
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=4770
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=4769

I just KNOW you will be blessed, Cyndi! It's such a wonderful opportunity to really dig into the Bible. We did the Bible at night as a family. We did the OT together again in AHL, but there isn't as much time for the fun and the experiences. Enjoy it all!
Julie
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Cyndi (AZ)
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

Oh, thank you everybody. And thanks for the reminder, Trish - we don't actually have to do it ALL.
cbollin wrote:ok.. found the post...
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... =25#p53005
Oh, that helps enormously! Thank you. I'm still nervous, but breathing easier. I need to print that out and keep it handy.
cbollin wrote:just start singing it now, Cyndi... cue the Steve Martin King Tut
ROFL!!!! "born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia . . ." hahahahaha *whew* That King Tut exhibit was a pretty cool field trip, though. :-)
at least Crystal got me to laughing . . . and I just *know* that she'll pm a song parody later . . . :-)

LeAnn and Tammie - when are you all starting school? My start date is Aug 8th to coincide with the public school calendar here. I'm going to have to read through all the links a few more times first. (I printed Crystal's post to keep with my TM.) Plus, half of our school room looks fantastic and the other half looks like a tornado's been through it.
Last edited by Cyndi (AZ) on Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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jasntas
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by jasntas »

My start date is Aug. 8th as well. The schools here are actually starting 2 weeks after that but I wanted to have a little cushion this year and not to have to work into June if nothing major happens.

My whole school room still looks like a tornado hit it and it is causing a lot of stress. :~ My dc think it's ok to go in and get whatever they want which would be ok if they would put things back.

I know me. Next week I'll be frantically preparing and stressing. Then, after school starts, I'll relax and have fun with it. (I hope.)
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Amy C.
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by Amy C. »

I just wanted to say that personally I did not think CTG was as intense as ECC. There may have been reasons behind that. ECC was our first year with MFW. It was a total different way of doing school for us. We came to MFW from another curriculum. We changed everything, including math and LA to go with MFW's recommendations. So it was a little bit overwhelming for me until about half way through the year. While I enjoyed ECC, I was way more uptight that year than this past year. Another aspect for me is that I just so enjoy studying the Old Testament so I was very excited about this. I am also excited about learning (along with my kids) about history from a Biblical perspective and in chronological order.

I will say as far as the feasts. I really wanted to do them. I have been interested in Biblical feasts for so long and was so looking forward to them in CTG, but real life was happening. I had a newborn in the mix. So I did the first couple of feasts, and yes, they were busy for me and I wondered if I was crazy for trying to do them, but I did try to do them exactly as the book recommended. As the others came around, I tweaked. We did one during the week instead of on the weekend. We scaled down a bit. We only did the Seder plate for the Passover. I prepared the plate and one day, at lunch, while dh was at work, the kids and I tasted and then discussed the significance of each item on the plate as it related to the original Passover and to Jesus. I would have loved for my dh to be here, but it didn't happen that way.

My boys said that their favorite feast was the Feast of Booths. It was COLD when we got around to it. (We were a bit behind the schedule due to the birth of the baby first of Sept.) We all, including the new baby, bundled up. I made beef stew and bread. My husband helped me get everything out to our already built fort, and we did it out there. It was supposed to be done as the sun was going down, but by the time we got everything together it was well past dark, but memorable nonetheless. I almost skipped this one because it seemed too much, but am glad that we made it work for us. We may not have done it exactly, but it was close enough to get the point of the feast.

Some feasts I (with the help of my boys) made the bread. Others I just bought something comparable at the grocery store. You can make it easy on yourself. As a matter of fact, after the first couple of feasts, I knew that I could not continue doing them all out. I completely respect the Jews and their dedication to these feasts, and even more so after trying to prepare them myself. My husband even said (after seeing me stressed and worn out after the second feast), "You know, we are not Jews. We don't have to do these feasts. We can just read about them." I did try to make him understand that this was an important aspect of our school year and that it was important for me to give my boys hands-on learning, but he did have a point. I calmed down and looked for ways to make the other feasts memorable but not overdo it for me in the prep.

So, I am just saying, do the feasts all out if you can, but don't stress over it and don't miss them even if you have to tweak them. Even if I did not do all the feasts all out, I would read from the Biblical Feasts book so that we could get a glimpse into the feasts and the significance they had in relation to God's people in the OT and His people (through Jesus) today.

Later in the year, while reading our Bible portion, we saw that the Jews were celebrating the Feast of Booths, and my boys remembered doing that feast and the significance of it for the Jews so that put that portion of scripture more in perspective for us.

It's really a great year, and you will be fine. We truly enjoyed it! I know you will, too!

Amy C.
Poohbee
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by Poohbee »

I've been preparing for CTG off and on throughout the summer (more off than on), and I was extremely intimidated by the feasts, too.

Then, I sat down and read the Introduction and the chapter about the Sabbath in Celebrating Biblical Feasts and that made me so excited to do the feasts. I love what I've read on this board about doing things to make the feasts easier, if necessary, and that has helped to put my mind at ease. I know that I can go out and buy some bread dough or bread for the Challah if I need to, but after reading some messages in the archives, I am excited to try baking the bread myself using the recipe in the book. I love the pattern for the embroidered Challah cover in the book, and I love to cross stitch, but I know that I won't have time to make one myself. So, when visiting my mom a few weeks ago, I asked her if she had any linens belonging to either of my grandmothers that they had embroidered, and I found a doily and a table runner that my grandma had embroidered years ago. I think that will make a lovely Challah cover, as it is special to me because my grandma made it. I'm excited to recreate the Biblical feasts in our home but also make them ours. I don't set the table with a tablecloth, special dishes, and candles very often, so I think it will be fun to do that when we celebrate the feasts. I also know already that I will probably just make a meal that is special to our family and that everyone likes to eat for our special meal for the feasts. Now, rather then dreading the feasts, I am looking forward to them.

I was a bit uncertain about using Genesis for Kids, too, but after looking through the book numerous times, I think the experiments will be simple to do and fun for my kids. After not doing many science experiments during ECC, it will be fun for my kids to do a bunch of experiments this year, because they love science experiments! I also think that GFK will be perfect for combining my 5th grader and my 1st grader for science this year. It seems like it will be a good fit for both of them.

To help you prepare, is there a friend you could get together with to have a "teacher inservice" day? This year, for the first time, a homeschooling friend and I are going to do that. We do not use the same curriculum at all, but she and I are going to take a bunch of our books, go out to our mall food court, and spend a few hours just planning for our school year together. We aren't planning activities to do together, as we will each be planning using our own curricula, but sometimes it is nice to have someone to talk to and bounce ideas off of as you plan. I'm excited to have a "teacher planning" day with my friend.

I'm also turning much more over to God this year as I plan. I tend to take things into my own hands and follow my own plans, but I read an article that reminded me I really need to pray about my school year as I am planning and seek God's guidance and direction as I plan so that I am following His plans for us and not mine. :-) Why do I keep forgetting that crucial aspect of my planning?

I'll be starting CTG on Aug. 22nd. I'll be thinking of and praying for those of you who are starting on Aug. 8th. Be sure you post to the board to let us all know how it goes as you get started.
Jen
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cbollin

Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by cbollin »

jasntas wrote:What is is about those feasts that's so intimidating?
1. b/c we have it in our minds that it has to be perfect since it's a religious thing or we'll be struck by lightning. ;) if we do it "wrong".
2. b/c we have it in our minds that it has to be perfect since it's a holiday issue and we stress on this stuff!

It's a hands on activity to get a feel for it.

totally agreeing with Amy "So, I am just saying, do the feasts all out if you can, but don't stress over it and don't miss them even if you have to tweak them. Even if I did not do all the feasts all out, I would read from the Biblical Feasts book so that we could get a glimpse into the feasts and the significance they had in relation to God's people in the OT and His people (through Jesus) today."

-crystal
dhudson
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by dhudson »

I love the idea of a teacher's in-service day. One of my best friends is doing the same years I am( high school and CtG) so we are going to do many of the things together so we could plan a day to plan school. Yeah! What a great idea, now where to do lunch...

I am doing CtG for the 2nd time and I am so excited. It is one of my favorite years. I do remember building the booth under the table as I was watching some friends kids for the week and it was blizzarding so we improvised and built a table fort. It was great.

There are some great books in the book basket under general book basket recommendations in CtG that I didn't do the first time because I was also teaching the twins first grade but bought this time around. They are fantastic and would be great to read to help kids understand what the feasts and festivals are about even if you didn't get around to doing all of them.

I agree with the others to just do what you can and not worry about the rest. It will be a great year.
God Bless,
Dawn
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705emily
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by 705emily »

Just adding a tad here......

I was nervous about CTG and the feasts too! We didn't do EVERY feast, but we did try to do most of them, and while it did take extra time and preparation,we kept it simple and the kids loved it! Dd loved making the covering for the Challah bread for Rosh Hashana, they made a booth for Sukkot out on the front porch with sheets over a picnic table, and ate supper under it! :) We did a shortened version of the Seder with dh, and I found a "Haggadah" online which we followed. Celebrating the Seder really brought the elements of the last Supper to bear for the kids, and was really meaningful! Don't stress over it and take the feasts one at a time--and if you don't get to all of them--remember you can do them the next time around! :)
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Julie in MN
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by Julie in MN »

One thing I've learned in the years since doing CTG is that even in Jewish families, the feasts vary. Just like our churches, which vary a lot in formality, length of service, music, and other details.

We attended a Passover with a Jewish family we know and they forgot things in the kitchen, started late, etc. The messianic congregation we visited a couple of times had personal sermons, they were trying to re-institute Jewish dancing with mixed success, and the congregation varied in their manner and attention.

I thought that might take some of the pressure off :)
Julie
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Cyndi (AZ)
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Re: nervous to start CTG

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

Julie in MN wrote:I thought that might take some of the pressure off :)
Julie
This thread has been like a big comfy hug! Thank you all so much!
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Cyndi (AZ)
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Yea!!! We started CTG!

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

Had to give an update. We had our Sabbath this past weekend - before starting CTG instead of after the first week because of dh's schedule. My dd and I made the challah cover and the spice box using recommendations from this board and I found candles on sale and bought fresh flowers for a centerpiece. We had a wonderful dinner and my dh did such a great job on the prayers and blessings. My dd was so overwhelmed by all the prayers, she asked if she could say one, too. So she laid her hands on her daddy's head and blessed him. It was very sweet. On Saturday, I opted to put a pot roast in the crock pot while dh took dd to pick up eggs from the neighbor. So, we had "cholent" for dinner. Going outside to count the stars was very exciting to dh and dd and we sat at the outdoor table to pour the grape juice and light the havdalah candle. I read the scriptures right out of the Feast book and read the prayer. I'm very thankful that we put in the time and effort -- and made certain things adaptable for us.

Today was our first day of CTG. DD has been apprehensive about being done with geography (we were in ECC for 2 years), but she absolutely *loved* today! I cannot believe how smoothly our first day back to school went! If I'm bragging, I'm bragging on the power of prayer and God alone! What a blessing. The only complaint came during math - of course. But that was my fault - I should have known to start with a bit of review and not just pick up on the day of Singapore where we called it quits 2 months ago. I'm going to back-pedal for tomorrow and offer some fun worksheet options instead of going on with double digit multiplication! Silly mom. :)

I hope everyone else who is starting school today is having a great day. Thanks again to everyone who gave me such encouragement about starting CTG.

Postby Cyndi (AZ) » Wed Sep 07, 2011 1:14 pm
We are enjoying CTG so much. Even with some freaking out (mine) about the feasts and some attitude moments (dd's and mine), this is turning into our best year ever. The first 4 weeks have been awesome.
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manyblessings
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Not a crafty mom, need advice on CTG

Unread post by manyblessings »

Ctaita wrote:
Fri Oct 21, 2016 5:38 am
I am currently homeschooling my 8yo ds(ECC), 5 yo ds(K) and 4yo dd(AATAT.) I also have a 2 1/2 yo ds who loves chaos and a 7 month old ds who is just starting to crawl. I am not a crafty mom, at all. Honestly mostly everything about preplanned crafts stress me out and I just don't see the value of it. I would much rather give my kids paints and canvas and let them create whatever is on their minds, which they actually prefer also.

With that said, I feel like I really struggle with how hands on this curriculum is. We've used this from the beginning when my oldest son was in K. At the end of each year I go back and forth on if we should continue with the next year but we have continued because this is what I know and am comfortable with.

I've looked at other curricula but I just don't feel peace with those options right now, the price or lacks in the bible area. Really I love the heart of MFW as a company and I love how much the bible is integrated into everything. There are pieces of other curricula that I like but it's hard for me to imagine leaving MFW.

So with all that said do you all think that going on to CTG would work? I look at all the feasts and such and if I'm honest with myself I just know we won't do them, which seems like a waste to me. If you would recommend continuing, do you have any advice on ways to make it work without all the extra crafts and projects?

Thanks for any insight!
Tabitha
Hi, another non-crafty mom here :) However, I wish I could tell you how to make it work without the pre-planned stuff, because over the years, I really have found that they do add to learning. My children have remembered with joy the hands-on activities I struggled to do with them that were planned in the curriculum. Children in particular retain more when all their senses are engaged. Plus, you are making memories.

What I can suggest is, don't feel like you have to do each and every activity-pick one or two that you feel least stressed about, and go with it. Let the children help you as much as possible with preparation as well as execution-don't feel like it's something YOU have to do. Letting your children go to town with their own creative pursuits is awesome, and I have always done that as well, but I have found that doing at least some of the pre-planned projects has really been great for the children and for me :)
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klewfor3
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Re: Not a crafty mom, need advice on CTG

Unread post by klewfor3 »

Hello! I have found that I am a crafty mom, but not organized! :-)

I wanted to jump on just to encourage you that CTG is a great year. It is worth the effort. But, honestly, we didn't do the feasts here. I wanted to (desperately) but our lives were just at a point where I couldn't pull them off. That said, we still had a great year, learned a lot, and enjoyed our time!

Just remember, you are the mom and teacher. There is so much to gain by reading through and discussing the feasts. Or using other sources online or other books to get a visual. I wouldn't recommend skipping subjects because I know that Marie has overlapped learning throughout the subjects, but you can absolutely adapt them.

Free creativity is wonderful but I believe there is much to be gained by doing the activities as laid out in the TM. Following directions, attempting to complete a project within a timeframe, and learning new skills are just a few things. Trust me, I am the mom that has the best of intentions to prepare over the weekend, but then I just end up grabbing the TM as I sit down with the kids at the table on Monday and looking at it for the first time. I have strived to do as many of the activities as we can (if I don't have the supplies we just look over the activity together and talk about what should have happened!). It has been so surprising how much my kids over the years have enjoyed AND learned. Sadly, I have to admit, most of projects/activities I didn't want to do...to my credit, I never let them know that :-)

I feel for you as a busy mom with little ones...but I hope you are encouraged. You're not alone. This isn't easy or always in our particular areas of gifting...but it is the most worthwhile thing I have done in my life! Hope that's not too heavy ;)

Prayed for you,
Kathy
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TriciaMR
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Re: Not a crafty mom, need advice on CTG

Unread post by TriciaMR »

The first time we did CTG, we did do the feasts. The second time, I had a high schooler and twin 5th graders. We did a Sabbath feast, and maybe one other. It was fine. They remembered a bunch from the first time. We got good books from the library to read about them.

Some modifications: find a cloth from Michaels and some fabric paints and let the paint the Sabbath covering. We searched images on google, and then my boys came up with something. (The first time our Sabbath cloth was a drawing my daughter did on paper.) Don't do the tabernacle if you don't want to (I saved the pieces from the first time around, so all we had to do was set it up again), but find a video on it.

My boys are now 7th graders and are not at all into any of the hands on stuff. They want to "get 'er done" (as Mater might say), and feel that it adds too much to the day.

Remember, the curriculum is just a guide, it is not your master. Do what works for your family. Read about the Sabbath feast, and then have your kids paint a picture about it. That's good, too.
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
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2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
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DS4home
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Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 11:32 pm

Re: Not a crafty mom, need advice on CTG

Unread post by DS4home »

I have to laugh because I actually love crafts, but always feel so crunched for time that I often skip them! ;(
It's been a while since we did CTG. I know we did celebrate the Sabbath without crafts. My dd walked around the table with a small bowl of water and towel over her arm, so we could wash our hands. We ate the meal I had planned, not a special meal or anything. I did make a loaf of bread from the frozen isle of the grocery store, and we tore it and passed it around rather than slice it. And we spent more time with the prayers than we usually do for a regular meal. We didn't make the bread cover craft or whatever else was suggested. Was there a spice box or something? Anyway, my dd loved it and wanted to do it again several times throughout the year! It left a lasting impression even without the crafts. ;)
I know we didn't do all of the other festivals, but read about them as others have said, or did a scaled back version.
I would encourage you to keep moving forward and do CTG. You already know the richness the curriculum has woven throughout it. The Biblical worldview holds it all together and you don't want to miss that. Don't let a few crafts stand in your way!

Dawn
Celebrating our 29th Anniversary <3
Amber(HS Grad, Married), Carmen(HS+Col Grad, Married), Nathan(HS Grad, College), & Bethany(10th).

2019: WHL for the 3rd time!
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Ctaita
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Joined: Sun Aug 09, 2015 3:42 pm

Re: Not a crafty mom, need advice on CTG

Unread post by Ctaita »

Thanks everyone for your input, advice and encouragement! I really appreciate you all taking time to respond. Sometimes with so many little people in the house I feel really overwhelmed. But I'll just stick with the motto "keep moving forward." Thanks so much!
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