take it home

Chemical Reactions | Week 6


Series Bible Verse: 2 Peter 1:5-7 “…add this to your life: faith, and to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, patience; and to patience, service for God; and to service for God, kindness; and to kindness, love.


Character Element of the Week: Service for God

Story: Nehemiah (Nehemiah 2:1-6:16)

Bible Verse: “…and to your patience, add SERVICE FOR GOD” 2 Peter 1:6c

Prayer: Dear God, You have done so much for me. Help me to serve You by helping others. Help me to see when others have a need and to do something about it. Amen




Take-It-Home Activities:
Parents: Is there another parent you know that could use a night out this week? Give them a call and offer to watch their children. Your children will love the extra playmates and you’ll be modeling “service to others” to your children.

Birth – Age 2: Even young children can help out at home. Instead of doing all the chores for them, invite them to help you with simple tasks such as putting their cup in the sink, throwing away their own diaper, helping to pick up toys, putting clean clothes away, etc. It will most likely take more time, but they will love helping you and the seeds you are planting are worth it!

Age 3 – Kindergarten: Do your children help out with chores at home? If not, start with a few simple chores such as making their bed (it doesn’t need to be perfect), helping set the table, sweeping after meals (again, perfection is not the goal), etc. Make it fun and remind your child that when they are serving their family, they are serving God.




give-a-way ending!

Just a reminder to leave a comment on our Organizing Post for a chance to win a custom made car organizer! We will announce the winner tomorrow!

signing the Lord’s prayer

Here are the signs we are using to help us learn The Lord’s Prayer during Lent:


We learned through “hallowed be your name” last night.

Ask your kids to show you!

wednesday nights in bright beginnings



Dear Parents,

Lent has become one of my most anticipated seasons.  This will be our third Lenten season during which we will commit to learning The Lord’s Prayer in Bright Beginnings.  It is such a joy to watch our children put this prayer into their hearts and know that it will stay with them into adulthood.  So, will you join us again this year?

Today is Ash Wednesday, one of the first days of Lent.

Today we begin a season in which we focus on REPENTENCE (not just the forgiveness of our sins, but a changing of directions; allowing God to change our thinking, actions, attitudes…), SORROW (not just the deep sorrow of Christ’s death on the cross for us but the journey toward Jerusalem, the foreboding days before the Last Supper), and YEARNING (not just a yearning for change but for the liberation that comes in both the birth and resurrection of Christ!).

What better time than during this season of intentional focus is there to teach our kids the prayer the Lord has asked us to pray:

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done on earth
as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
Lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.


Will you join us?

We will be working in Bright Beginnings to put this prayer in our minds and in our hearts during the weeks of Lent, starting with tonight.  The following is the breakdown of when we will be learning each part of the prayer.  Will you be willing to help your child learn this prayer during Lent?

  • Week of February 18th :  Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.
  • Week of February 25th:  10 Your kingdom come.  Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
  • Week of March 4th:  11 Give us this day our daily bread.
  • Week of March 11th:  And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors.
  • Week of March 18th:  13 Lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil.
  • Week of March 25th:  For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.


*If your child already knows The Lord’s Prayer, that is wonderful!  Spend some time each week praying the prayer together and talking about what each part means as we learn it in Bright Beginnings.  We will also be learning The Lord’s Prayer in sign language again this year to help our little ones remember the words.  Watch for a post of the video of the signs we will be using so that you can learn them at home as well!



a note from ryanne | give-a-way!


The word either makes you grimace or smile.
You’re either someone with an alphabetized spice rack or a pile of shoes inside your front door.

I happen to be a member of the alphabetized spice rack team; my closet is color coded, our shoes have cubbies, the milk can always be found on the top shelf right side, and there are always three clean towels waiting to be used in our bathroom.

This is precisely why I thought of you every time I emptied out an animal cracker container at church. My need for organization saw great potential in these cute, clear plastic containers that were FREE!

So I decided to start saving them.

And after I had collected a few, I took them home, printed some cute labels and Voila!


Our craft closet was organized!


And the great news is that you can have some too! I’ve used all the plastic bears I can, but we are really good at emptying them on a regular basis at church. Think of the possibilities you could do with them!

Plus, I’d be saving space in our recycling bin and you’d be getting FREE containers to help you organize. (We also have large cheeseball containers if you’re interested; we just don’t empty them as regularly). So, if you would like to have some of our bears, simply leave a comment letting us know how you would use them and I’ll be happy to save them for you!

Regardless of if it comes naturally or not, every one of us, out of necessity, organizes in some way. It may be with systematic processes or with “organized chaos.” Neither is right nor wrong; it’s just how God has wired each of us. I think we can learn a lot from each other, which is why we are offering this great give-a-way!

A member of our Bright Beginnings family has graciously offered to make a custom car organizer for our winner (you can check out her facebook page, The Makings of Melody, to see some of the adorable things she has made). All you have to do is leave a comment giving us your best organization tip. Let us know what works for your family and you might change the organizational life of another family in the process! It can be anything from how you plan and prep meals, to how you organize all those papers that come home from school, to your annual cleaning schedule (wait, people have those?!). We’ll keep the comments open all week, then draw a winner this Saturday (the 21st) from all the comments made!

I can’t wait to hear what great tips you all have for us!


take it home

Chemical Reactions | Week 5

This week our character element is PATIENCE and to practice our patience we made butter!

We all worked together to shake…






and shake some more!


And when we were all done, we enjoyed the butter we made on some toast.


Here’s your Take it Home for the week:

Series Bible Verse: 2 Peter 1:5-7 “…add this to your life: faith, and to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, patience; and to patience, service for God; and to service for God, kindness; and to kindness, love.

Character Element of the Week: Patience

Story: Joshua and the Walls of Jericho (Joshua 6:1-26)

Marching around the wall!

Bible Verse: “…and to your self-control, add PATIENCE” 2 Peter 1:6b

Prayer: Dear God, I am so glad that You are patient with me. Help me to be patient with others around me. Help me to know Your purposes in my life so that I can be patient in obeying You. Amen

Take-It-Home Activities:
Parents: Sometimes it is so hard to have patience when you have young children! Your children learn by watching you, so pray for God to give you an abundance of patience. The next time your child desires to complete a task independently, take a deep breath, stop, and allow your child time. (Then give a high five and hugs of course)!

Birth – Age 2: Young children have a very limited concept of time; however, introducing “one more minute” can be a helpful tool. Start using a timer (or simply announce “one more minute”) just before it’s time to clean up toys, come to dinner, share a toy etc. As your children age, you can increase the time increments and they will begin to understand patience when they learn they sometimes have to wait.

Age 3 – Kindergarten: Children this age often want to know “what the plan is” and how many more days until it happens! This is a great opportunity to teach and encourage patience. The next time your child is looking forward to an upcoming event, find some way to count down each day with your child (make a paper chain, make a sticker chart, cross off each day on the calendar, etc.). Remind them that they are practicing their patience until the day arrives.

childcare for valentine’s day!

Are you looking for childcare on Valentine’s Day?

Well, look no further!

One of the spring break mission trip teams from Spring Arbor University is holding a fundraiser this Saturday, February 14th to raise funds for their trip to Tucson, Arizona.  They will be offering childcare from 5pm-9pm on campus for $10/child.

Take a look for more details…


The leader of this trip is one of our own from JazNaz, so you will be supporting a great team while getting fabulous childcare for the evening.

Win! Win!

take it home

Chemical Reactions | Week 4


Series Bible Verse:
2 Peter 1:5-7 “…add this to your life: faith, and to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, patience; and to patience, service for God; and to service for God, kindness; and to kindness, love.

Character Element of the Week: Self-Control

Story: Noah & the Ark (Genesis 6:9-9:15)

Bible Verse: “…and to your knowledge, add SELF-CONTROL” 2 Peter 1:6a

Prayer: Dear God, I am so glad that You have control over everything that happens. You have a purpose for everything and everyone. Help me to have self-control to do the right things. Also, help me to have self-control so I will not hurt others with my actions or words. Amen

Take-It-Home Activities:

Parents: Write down one area in your life that needs self-control. Ask God to help you!

Birth – Age 2: Young children often use their bodies to get attention by crying, hitting, poking, scratching and grabbing. When these times arise, it’s an opportunity to teach them about self-control. Use phrases like, “Use your words,” “What do you need?” and “Let’s share.”

Age 3 – Kindergarten: Playing a card or board game is a great way to practice self-control! Play one with your child this week and encourage self-control by helping everyone take turns and be good sports. When the game is finished, have everyone give high fives and say “good game”!

wednesday nights in february

Here’s what your kiddos will be learning tonight and for the month of February:

Ark Pic

Story: Noah & the Ark (Genesis 6-9)

Bible Verse: “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” (I’ll need your help with this one because it is a little longer than our usual verses! Go over and over it with your children in the car, at meal times, before bed…)

Theme Song: Deep & Wide

To do @ Home:
• Over your next meal or car ride, take turns with your child listing as many animals as you can think of (you can include sound effects!). When you can’t think of anymore, talk with your child about what it would be like to live on an ark with all those animals!

• Every time you see a rainbow, remind your child that God loves us and keeps His promises!

See you tonight!