Craft was decoupage foam eggs as Easter decorations, using tissues paper...
Friday, March 26, 2010
Craft was decoupage foam eggs as Easter decorations, using tissues paper...
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
Thursday, March 18, 2010
We also need to fill several other positions (Hospitality, Publicity, Table Leaders, MOPPETS Carers, Mentors etc).
A meeting will be held tomorrow with the Womens Ministry leader from MBC (Kate) and the MOPS at MBC team to discuss the future of MOPS.
We will let everyone know the outcome of this meeting as soon as possible.
In the meantime please know that we are still meeting as planned for the Easter MOPS on Fri March 26th - Ps Lloyd Miller as GUEST SPEAKER on the topic of Easter. Hope to see you there (and hope to be able to share good news). Stay tuned!
MOPS CRUNCHY CHOC CHIP COOKIES
(the ones we did in a jar - 2009)
DRY INGREDIENTS IN JAR
1 cup Self Raising flour
¾ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup white sugar
¾ cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons flaked coconut
¾ cup chocolate chips or M&M’s 1 cup rolled oats 1 cup cornflakes cereal (OPTIONAL – not used in MBC MOPS Craft)
½ cup melted butter
¼ teaspoon vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees C.
2. In a large bowl, stir together 1/2 cup melted butter, 1 egg, and 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla. Add entire contents of the jar, and mix well. Roll dough into 1-2 inch balls, and place onto an ungreased cookie sheet.
3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in preheated oven. Cool on wire racks.
Friday, March 12, 2010
And when we landed on Planet Mum we didn’t leave behind our single friends or our friends without kids but somehow in the midst or too little sleep and a lot of demands on our time, friendships did change and it became challenging to find time with friends. Yet friendships with other mums are crucial.
Not only do other mum s in your MOPS group get you, they may smell like spit up or are sleep deprived like you are.
We need each other to help normalise out challenges and to celebrate our joys.
And its not just me saying so. Having friendships helps us be more resilient as mums which helps us stay healthier in all areas of our lives and to raise our kids better too.
Together we need to invest in community and I invite you to make the first move.
Extend your circle of friendship through MOPS. Don’t overlook friendships with mums who are a little further along in their mothering journey. Whether they’re formal MOPS mentors or another mum in your group or neighborhood, mums who are a few months or years ahead of you in the parenting journey can offer a different perspective.
And you can be a friend to the mum who is approaching milestones that you’ve already experienced. Maybe you’re living in the ‘mum of a two year old’ phase and you can befriend mum who has a six month old
What qualities do you look for in a friendship?
What are some of the CHANGES you have experienced (+ or -)
in the area of FRIENDSHIPS since becoming a mum?
What are some of the
you have experienced
in the area of FRIENDSHIPS
since becoming a mum?
Are your friends all
or is there diversity
(eg in terms of their age, background , marital status, religion, children, interests etc)?
Are you still
good friends with people from
What do you think has made these friendships end/endure?
What would you say are some good ways to maintain friendships over time/once you become a mum?
What are your thoughts on online friendships
(eg FACEBOOK, MYSPACE)?
Is staying in
contact online same/different/better/worse than real life?
What do you think are some
of the best ways/places to meet new friends as a mum?
Have you ever felt lonely or isolated
as a Mum?
What did you do to overcome this?
Have you ever had a friendship sour, or had to terminate a friendship?
What are some tips you can pass on/lessons learnt/anything you may have done differently?
On a scale of 1-10 how happy are you with the
quality and quantity of your current FRIENDSHIPS?
What can you do to improve this rating?
Do you agree with
from the MOPS DVD?
“We need a community of friends
in order to survive motherhood.”
“ We need each other to
help normalise our challenges
and to celebrate our joys.”
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
It is on motherhood and the importance of Leaving a Legacy.
This devotional is taken from the Proverbs 31 website which can be found here.
If you like, you can sign up for Daily Devotions to be emailed to your inbox.
Here is a link to what the section of the bible called Proverbs 31 actually says.
Friday, March 05, 2010
Monday, March 01, 2010
Guest Speaker: Jacinta Gatto
Craft: Passport to Planet Mum
Thank you for inviting me to share with you today. I am both humbled and honoured to be here with some amazing mums and there is nothing special about me beyond the fact that I am God’s girl and that anything I share today has come from my own journey to be a good mum, which by and large is imperfect and completely normal.
Just ask my children.
I have two boys aged 12 and 15 who have come through those early years relatively unscathed due to lots of forgiveness on their part for the silly and terrible things I have done over the years, so I guess we are now on the other side of babyhood and we have had some time to evaluate that journey. God has allowed me to see some of the myths that I believed when I began and have come to see as lies now that I’m older.
Let me say at the outset that I do not have all the answers and that I don’t want anything I say or suggest today to make you feel inadequate or in any way condemned. Not everything I suggest will be appropriate for you in your present circumstances. I’m only sharing some of what I have learned and hopefully it will encourage you to keep doing your best...because you and your family are worth it.
Would I be right in assuming that time is the biggest issue in connecting with and looking after ourselves?
How do we get the balance right between being yourself and the all-consuming mother thing and what are some of the myths that surround motherhood?
1) I CAN ONLY BE A GREAT MUM, IF MY EVERY WAKING HOUR IS SPENT WITH MY CHILDREN.
My children need to be my total focus.
· Sure fire way to exhaustion. Even if you had a thousand hours in a day your babies would still want you more. You are their world and they want your attention always. That’s fine and good but you are not able to meet an unattainable target.
Look, we all know that the first months with a new baby are survival mode for both of you. You are getting used to one another feeding every 3 hours etc., that’s normal and needed to get into a routine and understand one another. But if I stay there, my world gets smaller and smaller and I start becoming picky and stressed about minor things which seem really major in this tiny world. I start to lose objectivity and my spirit starts to be smothered.
The spirit that I talking about is the one that needs nurturing, feeding in us, to see the pleasure in little things. It needs to do things that fill our emotional tank so we can give out. And it is the first thing to be attacked when our precious bundle arrives.
Women are sensory beings. That means that we appreciate beautiful smells, tastes, scenes, sounds etc. We need these things to counteract the demands of giving.
So how can we practically help ourselves and protect against emotional exhaustion?
When my boys were young, I would run the bath with bubbles, crank up the cd player and bring in the bouncer with the baby in it and rock it while I was in the bath. When I’d finished having a soak, I’d jump out and bring the baby in with me. Just a bit of planning needed with towels and clothes ready. When I had 2, One would be in bouncer and the other play with toys with the bathroom door locked so no one could escape and I was not tempted to answer the phone, then they’d both come in with me.
Find something that you love to do and make time to do it.
· Gardening is a good one because they can come out with you and crawl around or dig in the late afternoon.
· How about a beautiful scented candle and some music while you’re cooking, or
· Scrapbook all the wonderful things they do and say.
· A walk in the fresh air maybe.
· One thing I always did, especially when number 2 came was to have a shower, put on some makeup, do my hair and get dressed for the day before my husband left for work.
It took some motivation, but made me feel that I could attack the day confidently or at least partly awake. Isaac didn’t sleep through the night for 7 years, so sleep deprivation was huge.
· Give yourself permission to have a few minutes of quiet. There will always be something to do around the house but that doesn’t mean it needs to be done immediately. I found this worked best when I spent some time firstly playing or doing something the children want to do. They seemed to recognise the focus and were less demanding in the following half hour.
So I could grab my coffee and magazine for a few minutes.
Any other ideas?
MY HUSBAND COMES SECOND BECAUSE MY KIDS NEED ME MORE.
Your husband needs you just as much as your children, in one way or another.
He can be your greatest ally or your biggest burden.
Your marriage was there before your children and with some effort it will be there after they have left your home. Yes, children do change a marriage, but it’s up to you how much.
Kids need happy mums and dads. That comes by making your husband your priority before your children, shocking huh!
· If you favour him you are doing yourself a favour. Why because he will start to support you more in payment for your honour. Of course, he won’t know he’s doing it and will probably think he’s always done it, but that’s ok.
· Did you know that a study was done which concluded that men would prefer to be honoured and respected than loved? They would choose respect first! I found that amazing and very convicting and it changed the way I relate to my husband. I try to honour him in front of my children by focussing on the good qualities I see and admire in him and I watch what I say in front of other people about him (most of the time)! No-one’s perfect! It built him up and made him feel valuable which,in turn, translated to a willingness to help.
· Here’s another secret – you may already know
Men have a huge fear of failure and not measuring up. They also know that you can do things for the children faster, more efficiently and better than they can. So they will tend to avoid helping particularly if we tactfully let them know how it should be done! Be encouraging and positive when they try to do something with or for the children– WORD ARE IMPORTANT TO THEM- and in time, they will feel confident to release you to have some time to yourself. They can handle it.
Affection is important - not just for your spouse. It reconnects you to who you were before your body became a supermarket and reminds you of the exciting part of you that has been buried under a load of nappies – when you felt desirable and sexy.
We all know how much touching and affection we give to our children and sometimes I know I felt there wasn’t anything left to give to my husband, and I’m not saying you have to be a martyr, but try to make an effort regularly, even if you don’t feel like it.
Guys often feel like they lose their partner when they gain a baby.
· One thing I occasionally when the kids were small and we didn’t have much money, was to get them to bed, dress up, be imaginative ( remember, the children are little, they are not going to remember much if you get sprung) and do a romantic dinner by candlelight.
· When we could get a baby sitter, we would have a date night- even just a coffee down at Mooloolaba or a movie for a couple of hours. You can swap with a friend for sitting or use a responsible teenager desperate for cash.
If you get the kids to bed before they arrive, and tell the children in advance that so and so will be there if they wake up, it’s easier for both you and the sitter – less cost for time – they can watch tv or study etc.
· Couch time was also nice. It worked better when the kids were a little older, maybe 6 or 7. We went out on our verandah for 20 mins or so when Joe got home, with a cool drink and talked about the day, and the children were not allowed to interrupt us unless someone was bleeding or dying. It made each other the priority and honoured our relationship.
The point is this, invest in your hubby and he will return your effort in time. Don’t give up the first time, keep trying, he will gain confidence and you will gain some romance (which feeds our heart), freedom ( because he knows what he’s doing without you), help and support.
This myth says, because it feels like it, that is this time of nappies, night feeds, constant watching and protection, where your body does not feel like your own but is at everyone’s disposal, will never end......IT IS A LIE.I remember saying to my mum on the phone one day that I wish babyhood was over because it was so intense. She replied with some wise words. “Honey, it’s really such a small period of time in your life. Enjoy it!”
Enjoy it? For some earth mums out there, they totally understand what she said but for me it was hard because I was growing up myself as well as growing up my children. I was so selfish and self-centred. But what she said is true. Enjoy
· No schedules
· Cuddles and I love you mummies
· The wonder of experiencing anew, something you have taken for granted as an adult
· Seeing the little things pinched between tiny fingers, missed by our adult eyesight.
· Dressing them in the cutest outfits you can.
· Playing tooth fairy
· Remembering the wonder of Christmas
· Being goofy
· Sitting on the beach making sandcastles with your child and not having to worry about your figure so much, because everyone can see that you have borne children.
· Enjoying the leveller that connects us so easily to other women when we share that we are mothers especially when you dress up only to find out at the end of the night that you got dried baby vomit dripping down your back.
This ‘it will never end’ area is where positive thinking really helps. The Bible talks about renewing your mind every morning meaning that you concentrate on what’s important; thank him for the day and ask Him to help you make the most of the day – even if it is just at home. OPRAH
You will blink one day and they will be 12 and 15.... and babyhood will be gone. In the Bible in Ecclesiastes, it says there is a time for everything under the sun....a time to live, to die, to reap and to sow. During our lives we have many seasons – childhood, being single, illness, marriage, university, building a career and motherhood. Say to yourself on bad days “It’s only a season. It too will pass.
· Then ring a friend for a chat or meet at the park for a coffee and a debrief. A burden shared is a burden halved especially if you get to have a break from home.
· Ring your mum or an older friend for advice or encouragement.
· Read a book in the bathroom/toilet that addresses the problem you are having.
· Pray and talk to your heavenly Father, if you know him, be honest and just pour out your heart. Some of my most beautiful moments with God were when I felt at my lowest.
On good days, say ‘This is only a season” and cherish every moment, take photos, record little funny speeches.
EVERYONE ELSE IS A BETTER MOTHER THAN ME
LIE LIE LIE
THE TRUTH IS
· Everyone struggles
· Everyone has doubts
· Everyone gets to the end of some days and can’t think of much that you did right that day.
· Everyone is a novice
· No-one has all the answers.
SO GO EASY ON YOURSELF
We make our lives very stressful trying to live up to everyone else’s expectations.
When I was younger I was a perfectionist – everything in its place, matching, lined up and clean. It sounds quite sad, but I would clean my floor most days on my knees- it was a small house but none the less...
God is good. He decided not to leave me like that. He gave me two boys and the realisation that my insecurities about acceptance and approval by others were driving me to exhaust myself.
You don’t have to be Wonder Mum and In fact, there is no such person.
· Tidy regularly for sanity but not obsessively.
· Realize that a true friend will visit and love you regardless of the state of your house. Don’t be offended if she wipes a patch to lay her baby on the floor.
· Choose some friends that complement you. They might love to clean: You might love to cook.
Maybe you can share these roles.
· Don’t be afraid of being honest with your friends. I find we as women are really good at pretending things are ok. It is not a failure on your part to admit it’s not. We all wear masks and it’s time to take them off.
Less stress means more peace and a calmer day which can only help us personally. It takes the pressure off, so I can be me more and I don’t feel the pressure to conform.
My worth needs to be based on more than my capacity to keep house.
My worth is found in my Creator who helps me to see things from a clearer perspective.I want to finish today with something that God has been showing me as we enter another year. Sometimes I feel I’m not being enough, doing enough or just enough for my life and family but -
Malachi 30 Says
What does the Lord require of you?
To live justly, Love mercy and walk humbly with your Lord.
Live justly – Stand up for your children and husband, giving them boundaries and love and time but always
Honour yourself and your right to have a little time for you. You do not need to feel guilty about this.
Love mercy – Forgive others when they fail you and forgive yourself when you can’t do everything perfectly or you make mistakes; apologising to your children occasionally is part of that.
Walk humbly with your Lord – I have accepted that only God, and not the glamorous neighbour down the road, or at sports practice, has it all together and that I never walk my journey alone.
Jesus says ‘Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:29
1 You have searched me, LORD, and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue you, LORD, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.
7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand — when I awake, I am still with you.
19 If only you, God, would slay the wicked! Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!
20 They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name.
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, LORD, and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
22 I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies.
23 Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Annual MOPS Participation Fee
When you register for MOPS each year, you will be handed an Annual Participation Fee form, and we ask that if you are able to pay this $10 participation fee, please do so before the end of April 2011.
The payment options are...
1. Direct Debit to MOPS Australia bank account
2. Credit card
3. Cheque payable to MOPS Australia
4. Cash to MOPS@MBC front desk
Thank you, from the MOPS@MBC team.
How did MOPS begin?
It was a Tuesday morning, at about 9.30. They each had faced spilled cereal, tangled hair, and a few had even been forced to change their outfits due to a last-minute baby throw-up on a shoulder or lap. They had driven, or pushed strollers, to the church and had dropped their little ones off in the creche. They had made it!
And now they sat, knees almost touching, in the circle of children's chairs from the Sunday school room. Hands held hot cups of tea and biscuits in utter freedom because this treat did not have to be shared with a child's sticky fingers. Mouths moved in eager, uninterrupted conversation. Eyes sparkled with enthusiasm. Hearts stirred with understanding. Needs were met.
That morning in 1973, was the first morning of MOPS, or Mothers of Preschoolers. Little was it known that from this small beginning in a church in
How did MOPS begin in Australia?
How did MOPS begin in
Nineteen years later and thousands of kilometres away, the same mutual need for sharing was realised by a group of mums with children under school age in
Since its formation in June 2000, MOPS Australia, Inc has grown rapidly and there are currently over 100 groups throughout
How did MOPS begin at MBC?
A Brief History of MOPS at MBC by Karen Askey-Doran (COordinator of MOPS til 2008 and currently Regional Coordinator).
In 1999, the leader of MBC’s women’s ministry caught the vision of MOPS. At that time I was a new Mum with little inclination to help; I was interested but not convicted!
Roughly a year later another meeting was held to generate interest. At this time I had another little baby girl, a 16-month-old toddler and, although I was unaware of it, Post
In 2005 Holly, caught the vision of MOPS and began to sow the seeds of interest throughout the young Mums in our church. Robyn Robertson came to our first meeting and inspired us into action…the seeds Holly planted took hold!
People came slowly at first to fill the positions, it seemed there were a lot of blanks for a long time! Holly was going to be our Coordinator and when she filled out the charter she realised that a Mother of Preschoolers should really fill that role…. So she called me! Very graciously, Holly took a side step into a Mentoring role (very appropriate really).
God was moving in our midst, we had been blessed with an inspired team of 15 Mops Leaders and 9 Moppets Leaders, each one having a testimony about how God had lead them to this ministry!
I suspect that God has big plans for our group. I still feel very inadequate sometimes but I do trust God and I want to serve him and to reach out to Mums who are hurting, to support them. I want to encourage, you know, to build up… to make a difference in people’s lives, especially my children’s!
I know I’m not alone… In Romans 8:28 it says “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” He planned for my girls, my twins, my battle with PND. He planned for MOPS - at this time - in our church! The door has literally been flung open!
What happens at a MOPS meeting?
When a mum enters a MOPS meeting, she is greeted by a friendly face and escorted to MOPPETS, where her children enjoy their special part of the MOPS program. In MOPPETS, children from infancy through to school age experience a caring environment while they learn, sing, play and make crafts.
Once her children are settled, the MOPS mum joins a program tailor-made to meet her needs. She can grab something to eat and not have to share it! She can finish a sentence and not have to speak in words of two syllables!
The program typically begins with a brief lesson taught by an older mum who's been through the challenging years of mothering and who can share from her experience and from the truths taught in the Bible. Then the women move into small discussion groups where there are no "wrong answers" and each mum is free to share her joys and struggles with other mums who truly understand her feelings. In these moments, long-lasting friendships are often made on the common ground of finally being understood.
From here, the women participate in a craft or other creative activity. For mums who are often frustrated by the impossibility of completing anything in their unpredictable days, this activity is deeply satisfying. It provides a sense of accomplishment and growth for many mums.
Because mums of preschoolers themselves lead MOPS, the program also offers women a chance to develop their leadership skills and other talents. It takes organisation, creativity, and management skills to run a MOPS program successfully.
By the time they finish the MOPS meeting and pick up their children, the mums feel refreshed and better able to mother. MOPS helps them recognise that mums have needs too! And when they take the time to meet those needs, they find they are more effective in meeting the needs of their families.
Meeting the needs of Mothers of Preschoolers
The MOPS program is dedicated to meeting the needs of mothers of preschoolers. These needs have been identified by Elisa Morgan and Carol Kuykendall in their book, What Every Mum Needs:
The need for Identity: Sometimes I'm not sure who I am
The need for Growth: Sometimes I long to develop who I am
The need for Relationship: Sometimes I long to be understood
The need for Help: Sometimes I need to share the load
The need for Perspective: Sometimes I lose my focus
The need for Hope: Sometimes I wonder if there's more to life
Here's How Some Mums Describe MOPS
"MOPS means that I am able to share the joys and frustrations and insecurities of being a mum. Our meetings provide the opportunity to hear someone else say, "I was up all night," or "They're driving me crazy!"
"As a single mum, this is the first group I've felt accepted in for who I am."
'On my first day at MOPS, I knew my life had changed forever! The women made me feel so relaxed. I had a peace I hadn't felt for a long time. They were so caring, pleasant, helpful…the list goes on! I just want to say, "Thank you MOPS!" If it weren't for MOPS, I wouldn't be where I am today.'
MOPS mum, Melbourne
'When I first started MOPS, I was very, very lonely. MOPS gave me a chance to get out of the house which I was grateful for. The talks were very informative. I found out a lot through these talks. My problems seemed to become smaller. When I first started at MOPS, I thought I was a Christian. I wasn't. Through MOPS I can now say, 'I am a Christian.' MOPS to me is not only Mothers of Pre Schoolers, but My Own Private Salvation!'