Contents tagged with parenting

  • How Do I Raise This Child!?

    My youngest son is that child that you know will do amazing things, if only he survives to adulthood.  He is responsible for every gray hair on my head, wrinkle on my face, and my future heart condition.

    He’s the kid who cut his own hair, not once, but seven times!  Who drew a path with blue marker across his grandmother’s entire house --cherry floors, carpet, and tile-- so that I would have a trail to follow to find him.   He’s the one who put dish soap rather than dish detergent in the dishwasher because he wanted to see what would happen –twice.   He’s the boy who put all manner of things --toys, bars of soap, pears-- down the toilet causing my dad and me to become experts at removing and replacing toilets, the boy who, upon getting locked in a sun-room, broke three windows to get out (good-bye $700.00), the boy who regularly loses frogs, salamanders, spiders, and toads inside my house, and who inadvertently  released several mice in my parents’ living room which were never seen again.  The boy who ran away from home to the backyard, packing all of his favorite stuffed animals, but no food, and then tried to start a fire and catch a squirrel with a homemade spear for dinner. …

    Read more...


  • Flying with Kids

    On Sunday we flew home from Florida with our five kids.  To add to the general excitement, ten of our nieces and nephews (13 and under) were on the flight as well.  When the flight attendants offered $800 in vouchers, a first class ticket on tomorrow’s flight, a hotel stay and meal vouchers to anyone willing to give up their seat, you would have thought that the rest of the passengers would have taken a good look at all our kids and stampeded one another to get back off the plane.  Heck, I considered it.

     

    The first thing I do when getting to our seats on a plane is ask the person sitting between me and one of my kids to trade seats with my two year old nephew who has been assigned a seat twenty rows away  with strangers.  Any sane person looks at my arms full of baby and legs clad in three year old and decides that twenty rows away from us is the place they want to be.  Even if it is a middle seat.  (Last time I flew the woman next to us sneaked off and got a nice older gentleman to switch seats with her –failing to mention that he would now be sitting next to a six month old.) Then I have my nephew switch seats with my teenager so that the nephew is with his parents and my …

    Read more...


  • Kids and worship

    Every weekday morning, before beginning any other school, I gather my children on the living room couch for family worship time.  Of all our daily activities, this one seems the most doomed for disaster from the start.  But, stubborn woman that I am, I persist.  Not being particularly musical, I cue up several youtube videos with lyrics for us to sing along with.  We read the Bible, each person prays,we do some Bible memory and occasionally act out Bible stories.  It should be so simple.

    Alas! It's difficult to read the Bible when someone is flipping the lights on and off so quickly that you feel you're at a 70's disco.  It's hard to feel close to God when one son is praying, "Lord help (my brother) to stop kicking me so that I don't have to punch him," and another chimes in with, "Help (my brother) to get his finger out of his nose."

    Then, the videos: "Wait this isn't the right one!  I want the one that shows the goat standing on a mountain!" "Ha, ha, that  guy has a funny beard!" "Click like!" Click dislike!" "Add to favorites!" "Ooh, this one has 2 million views!" All the while, I'm trying to model the desired pious behavior, an effort I inevitably botch by declaring, rather …

    Read more...


  • Yet Another Day

    [caption id="attachment_94" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="I love the kid, but it's amazing every hair on my head isn't gray"][/caption]

    “Mommy, Mommy, look at me!”  I toss a sad looking tomato to Tillie, one our chickens, and look around for the source of the excited voice.

    “Up here!” I look up, then up some more to find my youngest son a good thirty feet up a gnarly old oak tree.  I encourage him firmly to carefully climb down.

    Soon after, I glance out the back window to see him swinging from some sort of vine hanging from the same tree.  As I watch, the vine breaks and he falls, lying motionless on his side for several very long seconds, before popping up again and running off to the next adventure, even as he rubs the sore spots from this one.

    I sigh with relief and am reminded just how much I love him, then breathe a prayer of thanks that he’s made it through yet another day, asking, even in my thanks, for God’s grace in getting this child safely through to adulthood.

    Read more...