How We Use Our 5 Minute Drive to School (+7 Devotional Resources for the Car)

How We Use Our 5 Minute Ride to School

Every Monday through Friday my husband or I load our three kids, ages 6, 8, and 9, into our gray Honda Odyssey (along with every other middle-aged, suburban parent, right?) at 7:20 a.m. to head to school.

Our brakes always squeak as we back out of the garage. Our children typically have a small or large spat as they get situated. I often end up barking a “be quiet!” or “keep your hands to yourself” command at the offenders (and then regretting my tone). So begins our day.

We have 5 minutes together in the van between our driveway and the school doors. 5 minutes isn’t much time. But, it’s the only unhurried, un”get-your-clothes-on-eat-your-breakfast-get-in-the-van!” moment we have each weekday morning. I want to use that time wisely.

threekidsYears ago when our oldest started school, my husband and I decided we wanted to help our kids use that morning drive to set their hearts on what really matters. We wanted to use those precious few minutes to help all of us–parents included–to fix our eyes on Jesus.

How do we do we spend our 5 minute drive to school? We simply read a Bible verse, discuss it briefly, and pray. Depending on our kids’ ages, we’ve used different resources and discussed different topics over the years. I’ll share some of our favorites and how we’ve used them below.

To drive safely (cause that’s important and all), we usually read a Bible verse while still in the driveway or at a stop light. Or, now that two of our three kiddos read aloud pretty well, they often read a devotional snippet to everyone in the car and ask the questions. At least one child is paying attention that way. Score!

You need to know that some mornings go well. Everyone meaningfully contributes to the discussion. One kid might even offer to pray. And my heart melts. Other mornings, not so much. A kid derails the conversation by mocking the devotional content. Another submits a ridiculous prayer request just to induce giggles. And my heart does something other than melt. (Grrrr.)

I did some quick math this morning, though, and realized that we’ve racked up approximately 900 minutes of this 5 minute devotional time together over the years now. That’s not a pat on my back. It’s just a reminder that those few minutes really do add up over time.

We can help our children learn that nothing (not school, not friends, not grades, not how they look) is more important than coming to God–even for 5 minutes–a day. We can teach them over time to depend on Him and that the Bible speaks wisdom into every area of life. Not in huge, mountain-top experiences, but instead one imperfect, sometimes frustrating “spoonful” at a time.

Looking for a few easy resources to use in the car? Here are seven devotional resources we’ve found useful on the way to school.

These 7 gospel-centered devotional resources are perfect to use on short car rides, like to school in the morning.

“Real Food Meets Reality” Menu Plan: Nov 28-Dec 4

Real Food Menu Plan for November 28-Dec 4: Easy and delicious meal ideas that the whole family will love. Posted every Friday at Thriving Home.

Sponsored by Hy-Vee (Columbia).

Our family enjoyed the holiday respite and over-the-top good food, but it’s time to get back to the “real food meets reality” basics. This week, I’m focusing on some leaner dinner options like Hearty Vegetable Soup and Baked Chicken, but also throwing in some old family favorites like Beefy Baked Ravioli and Taco Bar.

P.S. Did you know you can have these menu plans emailed to you to weekly? All you have to do is sign up here.

Honey Dijon Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

Homemade honey dijon vinaigrette. A tangy salad dressing that tops off sweet salads perfectly! You just can't beat a homemade salad dressing--they are so good!

I love homemade salad dressings. They are just so easy to make and you can adjust them to taste JUST how you want them to. You not only save money by making them at home but you also save yourself from consuming all those added ingredients that come in store bought dressings.

Homemade honey dijon vinaigrette. A tangy salad dressing that tops off sweet salads perfectly! You just can't beat a homemade salad dressing--they are so good!

“Real Food Meets Reality” Menu Plan: November 21-27 (Thanksgiving!)

Real Food Menu Plan for November 21-27: Easy and delicious meal ideas that the whole family will love. Posted every Friday at Thriving Home.

Sponsored by Hy-Vee (Columbia).

Thanksgiving week means it’s time to get to work planning that Thanksgiving menu. I’m hosting this year, so I’ve got the full menu of what I’m serving. The rest of the week, though, is filled in with super simple recipes and ways to use up leftovers. Cause momma gonna be busy and tired!

P.S. Did you know you can have these menu plans emailed to you to weekly? All you have to do is sign up here.

Simple and Delicious Boiled Baby Potatoes

Simple and Delicious Boiled Baby Potatoes

Looking for a incredibly simple side dish for the holidays? Although these boiled baby (or new) potatoes take very little work and ingredients, they look stunning and will please everyone at the table. I also make these for weeknight meals along with dishes such as Oven Fried Parmesan Chicken Tenders, Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef, and Grilled Balsamic Herb Chicken.

The key to making these baby potatoes look appetizing and festive is finding an assortment of blue, red, and yellow baby potatoes. I see these all over the place now, even at Aldi and Walmart. The dried parsley flakes also add a little pop of color that add to the holiday feel.

I’ve given a range on the seasonings, so you will have to taste and adjust to your liking. It’s hard to mess these up, though. You won’t believe how easy and delicious these Boiled Baby Potatoes are!