I Choose Joy!

http://ichoosejoy.org

I'm Gena, a homeschooling mom of 8 children, ages 12 and down. My wonderful husband of 15 years is also my best friend! I give all praise to my Lord Jesus and my hope is that by joining me here you will be able to choose joy! !

Gena is a winner of Top 25 Moms With Big Families - 2013

What has having a big family taught you about motherhood?

That motherhood is challenging no matter how many children you have. It was hard when I only had one, it was hard when they were all little, and it's hard now that they're growing up. Motherhood is sanctifying, and I pray daily that I will meet the challenges God places before me with boldness, strength, and grace--because I do fail often.

What tips do you have for meal planning?

A number of years ago I heard a mom of 8 (Kym Wright) say, "think once and write it down." The more automatic it can be, the better. Don't reinvent the wheel each week. Have your recipes organized, a personalized shopping list that you can just circle what's needed, and make extra to freeze!

How do you get your children involved with chores? Please share what age these tips are appropriate for.

We have very detailed chore lists, and they do chores after each meal and in the afternoon. I start when they are three or four. They can wipe chairs and put their clean clothes and toys away at that age. The chores get more difficult as they grow. My older kids (8, 9, 11, and 12) clean a bathroom every Saturday morning before they are allowed to do any electronics.

What's the best form of exercise for a tired, busy mom who wants to get back in shape?

Gena Mayo

T-Tapp is what has worked for me. You can do it at home (on a DVD) in only 15 minutes a day for the Basic Workout Plus! Teresa Tapp has found the best way to work the muscles and burn the fat without wasting time. Perfect for us busy moms (like me, a homeschooling mom of 8). :). Read more about it on my link. http://ichoosejoy.org/2012/08/03/t-tapp-update-3/
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Please share a link to a photo of a great birthday cake you made or bought.

Gena Mayo

I made a cute (and easy) Sand-Castle cake, inspired by Family Fun Magazine. http://ichoosejoy.org/2008/04/07/new-6-year-old/
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What's on your bucket list of things to do with your kids this summer?

Gena Mayo

We aren't doing a full homeschooling schedule, but will still focus on learning, as well as having fun this summer!
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What's the funniest thing your child has ever said?

Gena Mayo

The other day my 6 yo said, "Mom, I don’t like all five senses of bananas.  I don’t like to taste them.  I don’t like to smell them.  I don’t like to see them.  I don’t like to feel them."  "And you don’t like like to hear people eat them?"  I asked. "I don’t even like to hear people talk about them!" he said. I guess he really doesn’t like bananas!
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What's one of the worst messes your child has made? Please share a link to a photo if you have one.

Gena Mayo

My one-year-old got into my make-up and painted his face with mascara! Be sure to see the pictures!
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