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Inspired Wordsmith
Stephanie
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Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

Please post your comments and questions about Chapter 5 in this thread.
Stephanie
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vivico1
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

You know, there was something in this chapter I don't really go along with. This is my opinion only of course but its the whole part at the bottom of page 89 and top of 90.

"I wanted Emily to know God. I thought I could make the introduction and perhaps stick around for awhile to see if these two strangers struck up a cordial conversation. I was like an ambitious hostess at a cocktail party--I didn't want to force a relationship, but once the two started to talk, I would quietly disappear and hope it took."

I think its really important yes to introduce your children to God. The problem is, I see way too often, parents who, for example, drop their kids off at a church and pick them up after, or have a church bus pick them up for church. Other than family, or maybe moreso even, is there a closer relationship than one's relationship with God? And if you believe in God and want your child to, why are you not there with your child, strengthening your own bonds of love for each other and for God by sharing such experiences? Why would a parent want to "quietly disappear and hope it took"? Children left at churches, altho loved and taught just as the others very often leave as soon as they can, because no, it didn't take. It didn't take because it didn't take with their family, as a family unit. It didn't take because once they leave the churches, there is no one at home teaching them how wonderful this particular relatitionship can be in their own family. That saddens me.

 

To me, the idea (not said here but similar) that, well I don't want to force them, they can decide what they want to be or believe when they grow up and understand, is just all backwards! To me, thats like saying, well I don't want to force them to read, they can decide when they are older if they want to or not. I think spiritual upbringing is as important for a parent to give a child as anything else they can teach them. Then when they are grown if they want to STOP or maybe join a different religious group than you, that's their decision, but as a child it is our duty as a parent to teach them, even this. After all, is there anyone as close to God as a baby, or a child? Why would you not nourish that and keep that candle burning so that it can be a strength and resource to them all their lives, even when you as an earthly parent may not be able to be there for them? I speak of this religious idea knowing that someone may be upset by it, but it was brought up in the book and these are my thoughts about introducing children and walking away hoping it "took".

Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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DSaff
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I agree with you, Vivian. I think parents need to be present for their children in all aspects of their lives and model the behavior. I liked the way Amy thought of interesting ways to teach her class, and loved the "peanut Jesus." It showed creativity and a definite sense of humor!

 


vivico1 wrote:

You know, there was something in this chapter I don't really go along with. This is my opinion only of course but its the whole part at the bottom of page 89 and top of 90.

"I wanted Emily to know God. I thought I could make the introduction and perhaps stick around for awhile to see if these two strangers struck up a cordial conversation. I was like an ambitious hostess at a cocktail party--I didn't want to force a relationship, but once the two started to talk, I would quietly disappear and hope it took."

I think its really important yes to introduce your children to God. The problem is, I see way too often, parents who, for example, drop their kids off at a church and pick them up after, or have a church bus pick them up for church. Other than family, or maybe moreso even, is there a closer relationship than one's relationship with God? And if you believe in God and want your child to, why are you not there with your child, strengthening your own bonds of love for each other and for God by sharing such experiences? Why would a parent want to "quietly disappear and hope it took"? Children left at churches, altho loved and taught just as the others very often leave as soon as they can, because no, it didn't take. It didn't take because it didn't take with their family, as a family unit. It didn't take because once they leave the churches, there is no one at home teaching them how wonderful this particular relatitionship can be in their own family. That saddens me.

 

To me, the idea (not said here but similar) that, well I don't want to force them, they can decide what they want to be or believe when they grow up and understand, is just all backwards! To me, thats like saying, well I don't want to force them to read, they can decide when they are older if they want to or not. I think spiritual upbringing is as important for a parent to give a child as anything else they can teach them. Then when they are grown if they want to STOP or maybe join a different religious group than you, that's their decision, but as a child it is our duty as a parent to teach them, even this. After all, is there anyone as close to God as a baby, or a child? Why would you not nourish that and keep that candle burning so that it can be a strength and resource to them all their lives, even when you as an earthly parent may not be able to be there for them? I speak of this religious idea knowing that someone may be upset by it, but it was brought up in the book and these are my thoughts about introducing children and walking away hoping it "took".


 

 
DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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Amy_Dickinson
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Registered: ‎10-22-2008
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

Thanks for your comments on "Peanut Jesus," which is a very special chapter for me.

When I wrote that I wanted to inroduce Emily to God and then stand back and hope the introduction "took," I was trying to indicate that I was making the same kind of decision that many parents make.

 

I hope you'll agree that I was wrong in that assumption and that the rest of the chapter goes on to illustrate how very wrong I was. When I taught Sunday School for all those years, I saw many parents do the old 'drive by' -- dropping their kids off with us and leaving their spiritual lives very much in the hands of teachers. When our pastor indicated that I had a "ministry," I couldn't imagine that to be true, but then of course I discovered that it was true.

 

I agree that parents should do much more than just make the introduction and then stand by and I like to think that at the end of this chapter, it was clear that Emily had come to know God -- very much in her own way and on her own terms, but with my participation. Ultimately I have had the pleasure to see that she is a soulful and joyful person with an active spiritual life -- both at church and beyond.


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Tarri
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I guess I was one of those children with the drop-off parents.  Every Sunday my mom or dad would take my sisters and me to the local community church and we would attend Sunday school and then when we were older church services.  Neither of them attended church on a regular basis (except when we had programs and pagents), but they taught us by example how they wanted us to act and treat others, especially those less fortunate than us.  As a result, they raised four daughters who, while we may not fit into a specific religious mold, are spiritual and giving. 

 

 

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Tonya
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I think it was interesting in how the two different churches were run and to be able to be in a ministry with children. Well bless you! I think in comparing the two churches, from Amy's experiences with the Bible Study class, to seeing the way Freeville did the live manger scene, what differences.

 

In today's world there is a lot of parents letting their children go to church without them. I happened to be one of them. My father is a Lutheran minister and I now live in a small town. There is no Missouri Synod Lutheran church here. The closest one is 30 miles away and with gas prices the way they are, really not feasible to go every week. However, we have found a church that preaches the message and we can attend as a family. I do agree that is important, but I think Amy was just doing what she thought was right. Isn't that what we all do?

 

This book just keeps getting better and better. If you can't tell, I am having a hard time putting it down!

 

Tonya

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tabcat
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Registered: ‎09-17-2008
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

Oh yes Emily! "Second grade kids are jerks.  Especially the boys".  Been there, done that and one of those boys was mine! Except I was not as creative as Amy.  My then 7yr. old son who is now 27,  asked me to stop volunteering to lead what we call Children's Church because I was embarrassing him.  I can even recall the kid (not mine though, thank goodness) that would have eaten the Peanut Jesus if I had been smart enough to think of this craft.

I agree with Tonya...this book keeps getting better and better.

TC

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PCGator
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

As a 3rd grade teacher, I could really relate to Amy's stories about her Sunday School students.  It truly is a ministry of course, and all we can do is try our best and leave the results in God's hands.  And keep our sense of humor, of course.  I like to believe God's laughing right there alongside us at some of their shenanigans!

 

Carol

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bookloverjb85
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus


PCGator wrote:

As a 3rd grade teacher, I could really relate to Amy's stories about her Sunday School students.  It truly is a ministry of course, and all we can do is try our best and leave the results in God's hands.  And keep our sense of humor, of course.  I like to believe God's laughing right there alongside us at some of their shenanigans!

 

Carol


I agree with PCGator, I am a second grade teacher and if I did not have some sense of humor with students I would probably lose my mind.  There will unfortunately be some parents who will always think you are the ministry, but it will all work out in the end and hopefully God guides you along the way.
--Jen--

"A house without books is like a room without windows."--Horace Mann
Inspired Wordsmith
Stephanie
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I can't help but think of my own daughter's 2nd and 3rd grade teachers, not in Sunday School or Children's Church (we have both) but in the classroom every day.  Both of those women had an enormous impact on my daughter, not just in academics, but in the ways she conducts herself, thinks about herself and views others.  They both taught with a kindness and caring that they themselves displayed on a daily basis.  I love that her teachers are fit to her personality - we have a guidance counselor at the school who is so in tuned to the teachers and students that she rarely misses.   It's fantastic.

 

So thank you - to all the elementary school teachers out there.  Your satus as role models does trump the celebrity movie stars and pro-ball players.   Parents do notice, and appreciate you.

 

As to Peanut Jesus - my daughter would have been horrified by the eating boy... she might never have gotten over it!  :smileyvery-happy:

 

 

Stephanie
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Amy_Dickinson
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I'm delighted to report that this chapter -- along with hilarious photos of my horrifying Peanut Jesus craft project -- is featured in Good Housekeeping magazine. It is in the December issue, which just hit the newsstands this week.

 

Strangely enough, I had kept remnants of my Peanut Jesus craft project, which I sent to the art director at the magazine, and they went a little crazy with it. I reread the chapter again last night, and got teary, as I always do, at the end of the chapter, remembering my dear daughter's spiritual reaction to a particular Christmas Eve night.

 

Amy


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Tarri
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I'm going next door now, to steal my sister's copy of Good Housekeeping, which came last week.  
Inspired Wordsmith
Stephanie
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

If Tarri's sister has gotten her Good Housekeeping already, does that mean my subscription has run out?!  I'm hoping it was just delayed in the Veteran's Day holiday mail.

 

Amy, I'm very interested to see how the editors there "went a little crazy" with your craft project... I can only imagine!

Stephanie
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Tarri
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus


Stephanie wrote:

If Tarri's sister has gotten her Good Housekeeping already, does that mean my subscription has run out?!  I'm hoping it was just delayed in the Veteran's Day holiday mail.

 

Amy, I'm very interested to see how the editors there "went a little crazy" with your craft project... I can only imagine!


 

The little pictures were darling!  Seriously made me want to do a craft project. 

 

Stephanie, I think you might need to go to the magazine stand (it's toward the back 1/3 of the magazine).  Perhaps there will be a line at the grocery store. :smileywink:

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m3girl
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

I enjoyed this chapter - not for it's religious subject but more for the quality of storytelling.  I am not a religious person and I would have a challenge if I had children on what to do about that aspect of life.  What I do like about the story is the continued connection between Amy and Emily as they go to sunday school and then discuss what happened.  Peanut Jesus is hysterical and the descriptions of all of the figures of the creche and how they were crafted was fun to read.  With every chapter I read, I wonder more and more - do we really even need men in our lives to feel complete (outside of the sperm donation)?

Susan 

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Peppermill
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus


m3girl wrote:

I enjoyed this chapter - not for it's religious subject but more for the quality of storytelling.  I am not a religious person and I would have a challenge if I had children on what to do about that aspect of life.  What I do like about the story is the continued connection between Amy and Emily as they go to sunday school and then discuss what happened.  Peanut Jesus is hysterical and the descriptions of all of the figures of the creche and how they were crafted was fun to read.  With every chapter I read, I wonder more and more - do we really even need men in our lives to feel complete (outside of the sperm donation)?

Susan 


Susan -- NO.  But they can be wonderful to have  -- and it can be fulfilling to cherish and to be cherished.

 

(I married later than many and was widowed younger than many.  I have had deep pleasures and sorrows from all parts of my life's journey.)

 

Pepper

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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Peppermill
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus


Stephanie wrote:

If Tarri's sister has gotten her Good Housekeeping already, does that mean my subscription has run out?!  I'm hoping it was just delayed in the Veteran's Day holiday mail.

 

Amy, I'm very interested to see how the editors there "went a little crazy" with your craft project... I can only imagine!


A friend said on Friday that hers had not arrived yet.  (She promised to hold it for me when it does.)

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
Inspired Wordsmith
Stephanie
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

Do we need men to "complete" us? - No!  The idea of my husband "finishing me off" (mentally) has crossed my mind a time or two though.   Does that qualify as completing me?  :smileyvery-happy: 

 

 

Stephanie
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m3girl
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus

Pepper,

 

Just to clarify - I am not a man-hater....I do realize there are a few good ones out there....I just haven't been lucky enough to find one, yet.

 

Susan

 

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Peppermill
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Re: Chapter 5 - Making Peanut Jesus


m3girl wrote:

Pepper,

 

Just to clarify - I am not a man-hater....I do realize there are a few good ones out there....I just haven't been lucky enough to find one, yet.

 

Susan

 


Susan -- I didn't take you as such.  I just posted my reaction to your post. 

 

I long knew that I could have never married and still have had a fulfilling life, although I grew  up during a period when marriage was the "normal" expectation perhaps even more so than today,  

 

Pepper

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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