"…And she smiles at the future." ~Proverbs 31:25

Posts tagged ‘children’

Sweeter than ice cream

When we dropped my son, Connor, off at work, he insisted (No, really!) that we come inside and let him buy us some ice cream. As we waited in line to order, five-year-old Remington started pulling on my sleeve and pointing at the guy in front of us–a man we’d never seen before, whose arm was in a sling.

Just as I opened my mouth to tell her to stop pointing at strangers, she finally managed to get out (in a loud whisper) what she was trying to tell me:

“Mommy! We need to pray for him!”

{sweet girl}

Thank you, sweet girl, for helping me understand these words of Jesus:

And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:3)

Thanks for stopping by!



Young children pick up their native language at an astonishing rate. I am always amazed at how quickly and effortlessly they grow to understand vocabulary and syntax without any formal instruction. Of course, sometimes there are bumps along the way, which provide plenty of free entertainment for those witnessing them.

A while back Remi went through a stage where she often substituted words and phrases she knew for those that weren’t familiar or didn’t make sense to her. Here are a couple of examples:

She found a package of these ….

…. and asked, “Hey, Mommy, do you think Daddy would mind if I ate some of his Sesame Streets?”

A week later we went through the drive-through at Whataburger and got a vanilla malt, the first malt she’d ever tasted. Apparently, she liked it; the whole way home, she kept asking, “Can I have another drink of that Malt-O-Meal?”

Here’s where I’ll open it up to the rest of you: What funny things have you heard from the mouths of little ones? Please share them in the comments so we can all smile together!

(Note: Only your first comment on this blog has to be approved; all your future comments will show up automatically. So go ahead and share! It’s easy!)

Thanks for stopping by.

They are us

Those of you who stop by here regularly may remember from this post, or maybe from this one, that my youngest daughter often surprises me with her unexpected responses to my questions. I love her original answers and wish I took the time to document more of them.

Last fall we enjoyed going through this little preschool workbook together:

On one occasion, I showed her the picture below and asked the related question: “What game are the children playing?”

Her answer? “Math.”

OK, so I guess I can appreciate that she noticed the numbers and made that connection. But mostly, I’m thinking we need to bust out that sidewalk chalk way more often around here!

A few pages later, she correctly answered the first question, “What can you use to write letters to friends?” with “Computer.” (Although, I think the answer I would have given as a child–pen and paper–would have been perfectly acceptable, too. Just sayin’.)

To the bonus question, “What else can you do with it?” she answered, “Work on my blog.” Yes, she said “MY blog.” As in, Remington’s.

Bear in mind that she has almost never seen me working on my own blog, as I usually only do that when she’s asleep. I guess that’s why it struck me as funny when I found her sitting at the kids’ computer desk one day, and asked her what she was doing, and she answered, “Oh, I’m just working. On my blog.”

(Notice that the computer isn’t even on!)

You know where I’m going with this, right? Our children ARE watching us. What are they seeing? What are they copying?

I love this quote by David Bly:

Your children will become what you are; so be what you want them to be.

Kind of scary, huh? But it’s also very motivating. If we want our kids to be world changers; if we want them to be honest and hardworking and loving and forgiving; if we want them to be people of integrity, then let’s work on having those characteristics ourselves. We can’t ask of them what we’re not willing to do.

Thanks for stopping by!

Hey, moms–do less!

Most of us who are mothers struggle, for one reason or another, with “mommy guilt” from time to time. Often, we are made to feel like we should be doing more. Rarely are we told we should be doing less, but maybe it’s time to start thinking that way.

Julie B. Beck said it, and I agree:

“Mothers who know do less. They permit less of what will not bear good fruit eternally. They allow less media in their homes, less distraction, less activity that draws their children away from their home. Mothers who know are willing to live on less and consume less of the world’s goods in order to spend more time with their children—more time eating together, more time working together, more time reading together, more time talking, laughing, singing, and exemplifying. These mothers choose carefully and do not try to choose it all. Their goal is to prepare a rising generation of children who will take the gospel of Jesus Christ into the entire world.  That is influence; that is power.” 

Here they are, my very good reasons to start “doing less:”

Thank you, Ms. Beck, for the inspiration. I am taking your words to heart.

Thanks for stopping by!

She’s planning her wedding

The first thing my four-year-old daughter did upon waking this morning was start planning her wedding, and I thought I’d share with you what she came up with:

The bride-to-be

Remington: the bride-to-be

She will be wearing a pink and purple wedding gown, and carrying purple roses.

She’ll also have on shiny, purple “glip gloss.”

She will be 69 years old.

Her groom will act like a gentleman, and after their kiss, he, too, will be wearing shiny, purple “glip gloss.”

Her flower girls will be her big sister (who at that time would be over 75 years old!) and Jensen, who is just a few months younger than Remi.

At her reception, olives, fish sticks, and grape cake will be served.

As she and her groom leave, wedding guests will throw flowers at the departing couple.

She will not be taking a honeymoon, because “that only happens on Dick Van Dyke.”

However, if she were to take a honeymoon, it would be to Chick-fil-A.  (But she wouldn’t go into the play area; only her children would do that.)

At this point, I asked her, “How many children do you plan to have?”

Her reply:

“A LOT! Like YOU! You love ALL your kids!”

At least she got that part right.

Thanks for stopping by!

That’s what I call a fortune

In dressing for a funeral this morning, I donned a strand of pearls. My ten-year-old daughter looked at me, surprised, and asked, “Are those real?”

I laughed. “Umm…no.”

“Oh, right,” she said. “If those were real they’d cost a fortune.”

I laughed again and replied, “And I don’t have a fortune.”

It took each of us just a fraction of a second to realize the fallacy in that statement. Because the truth is, I do have a fortune.

I have a faithful, Christian husband whom I love and respect.

He is an amazing daddy to these four precious kiddos:

I adore each of them, and feel incredibly blessed to be able to spend my days learning right alongside them.

I have parents who love me and taught me to love God.

I have friends I enjoy and friends I miss.

I lived in a country so great that men have been willing to give their lives for her.

I have plenty to eat, plenty to wear, and plenty to keep me busy.

I have more books than I can read and more happy memories than anyone deserves to have.

I have opportunities to serve and teach, and the ability and desire to learn.

I have role models whom I look up to.

I have a healthy body and a healthy family.

More important than any of these, I have the hope and expectation of eternal salvation because Jesus loved me enough to give His life for me.

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich.  (II Corinthians 8:9)

So yes, I have a fortune!

My life isn’t perfect, but I’ve been given so much to treasure.

How about you? Have you thought today about all you have to be thankful for? Your list may be different from mine, but I’m betting you can list off plenty of your own treasures.

While you’re at it, why not share a few of them here? I’d like to know: What makes you rich?

Thanks for stopping by!

First things first

“Everything’s a trade-off.” I say that all the time—mostly to myself. It helps me get back on track when I begin mentally veering off in the wrong direction…which I guess happens pretty often. For example:

Here’s a scene which makes me want to laugh, and cry.

{My scrapbook school desk in my scrapbook school room}

I laugh because of those scrapbook supplies on the back side of the desk. That’s me pretending like I’m going to be scrapbooking sometime soon. Ha ha ha!  In my mind, I even like to call this my scrapbook desk. But that big binder in the foreground–my lesson plan book–gives away the truth. The times I sit at that desk every day are spent going over our curriculum, planning out lessons, and assigning schoolwork. The scrapbook supplies and tools nearby serve only to make me wonder when I’ll get to use them again.

Although your hobby might be something different, I’m sure you can relate. There’s always something we NEED to do sitting right in front of the thing we WANT to do. That’s just life. But sometimes it’s really tough to accept.

Whenever I make the mistake of flipping through a scrapbook magazine, I start to feel a tiny stab of jealousy. I start wishing I had the time and opportunity to scrapbook whenever I wanted. I start wishing I had my own scrapbook room. I start wondering if I’ll ever be done with all my “obligations” so I can have a little free time to myself. That’s when I quit wanting to laugh, and start wanting to cry.

And that’s when I have to remind myself once again: “Everything’s a trade-off.”

You see, if I had my own scrapbook room, that would just mean that one of my children wasn’t here with us. I certainly don’t want to rush that! If I had the time to sit down and scrapbook whenever I wanted, that would mean that my littlest one was growing up and becoming independent way too fast, and that I didn’t have the privilege of educating all four of my children at home.

Yes, lately I’ve been trying to figure out how to carve out some “me” time on a more regular basis. Mainly, I’m wanting to scrapbook. But what am I willing to trade?

Should I use the early-morning time when the kids are still asleep? Nope. My Bible study and prayer time is way too important. I can’t afford to give that up for anything else. Where else can I fit it in during the day? Pretty much…..nowhere. There’s school, and laundry, and cooking and cleaning and playing and errands, and a little one who skips naps as often as she takes them. And at night? Well…I’d like to list off some very noble-sounding activities for you, but most of you would see right through that and know that the truth is, by that point I’m just too tired!

So you don’t need to argue here that moms need time to themselves. I know that’s the case. But if we get too focused on what we think we’re missing out on/what we don’t have, we start to lose sight of what we do have.

We have lots of laundry because we have families who live with us and are active, and because we have plenty of clothes to wear. We have dirty dishes to do because we always have enough to eat, and school to plan and teach because our children are smart little sponges with whom we have the opportunity to share new things every day. We have responsibilities because we are needed, and that’s not a bad thing!

Sometimes we let the things and people we care most about begin to feel like burdens. Remember how much you wanted that house? (Think about that while you’re cleaning!) Remember how desperately you wanted those babies? (They are not burdens! They’re blessings!)

So today I’m going to thank God for all He’s entrusted me with, and I’m going to try to do what I need to do with a smile. Not just a smile on my face, but one that’s genuine and comes from the inside, because I know my work is important. And maybe one day soon, I’ll scrapbook. (If not, I know my supplies will still be there when I finally get around to it.)

What are you sacrificing to keep first things first?

Is it worth it? Why?

I hope you are able to smile about your priorities today. I hope you remember why you’ve made the choices you’ve made, and that those reasons motivate you to keep going. And even if you feel like you want to cry, I hope you can laugh instead.

Thanks for stopping by!

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