Tag Archives: Raising Children of God

The Tearful College Road Trip

While watching the movie, “College Road Trip,” with my two kids, I started getting choked up at the point of the movie when the character played by Raven is actually leaving the nest for college.  Effectively using flashbacks the director had scenes moving from the “good old days” with little Raven and the current  Raven leaving the teary-eyed parents to enter the dormitory.  I was crying along with the parents.  I kept thinking that this will be me real soon.

Cozy on the couch, my son watched the tears stream down my face.  Moved by my reaction to the movie, he curled up on my lap putting his arms around my neck.  Whispering in my ear, “I won’t go to college, mommy if it is going to make you cry.”

Squeezing him tightly, I whispered back, “No, I want you to go to college.  But I will just have to go with you.”

Isn’t it hard to let our kids grow up??  I have reached a time in my life when I am counting my blessings because they are at the brink of leaving me to an empty nest.  When they were little, I couldn’t imagine the time coming when I am worrying about college.  I was overwhelmed and obessed  about leaving them in the care of a daycare and on to kindergarten.  I hadn’t thought past the elementary years. Yet, here I am thinking about their future and how numbered my days are to have them in my nest under my wings of protection.

Imagine how Mary felt.  I wonder if she laid in bed at night worrying  about Jesus growing up and leaving her nest.  Or did she find rest knowing he was going to change the world?  How in the world did she get through the milestones of his life?  Was she anxious or excited?   I sure wish we had her “how to raise a son and not be overly anxious” book.

I guess I just need to relax, enjoy each day I have with them, and help them find their Godly pathway and purpose in life.  But… sniff….it is…. sniff so hard…..sniff sniff……

The Pretty Pink Dress

Once upon a time, there lived a pretty little princess.  Princess Jo Jo was her name.  She had so many pretty little princess dresses.  She had red ones, blue ones and purple ones.  Princess Jo Jo had so many but she only wore one.  A pretty pink princess dress.  It had tiny pearl buttons down the front.   Embroidered pink roses were sewn across the hem line.

Princess Jo Jo wore this pretty princess dress every day.  She wore it to princess school and to the princess park.  She wore it everywhere.  She loved that pretty pink dress.

And like all little princesses, Princess Jo Jo grew up.  Every day she grew taller and bigger.  And her pretty pink dress grew smaller and smaller.  Until one day that pretty pink dress no longer fit.  This upset Princess Jo Jo.  She didn’t want to wear the red, blue, or purple dresses.  She only wanted the pink dress.  Princess Jo Jo cried and cried.

One day, Queen Mommy took the pretty pink dress.  She plucked the pretty pearl buttens off of the dress.  She cut the hem off of the sweet dress.  Then she began making a new dress for Princess Jo Jo.  She put the buttons and the roses on the new dress.  When Princess Jo Jo saw what Queen Mommy had made, she was so happy.  She hugged Queen Mommy and gave her a kiss.

The story of the pretty pink dress was one of Joellen’s many bedtime stories I created to lull a tired toddler to sleep.  But, this morning I realized that this simple story I created could be used as a devotional.  We, God’s children, are called to out grow our worldly lives.  We at one time loved being a part of the world.  We loved it so much that at times we don’t want to give it up.  Just like Princess Jo Jo.  We like the way the world feels.  We are comfortable just like a favorite pair of jeans or a pretty pink dress.

Yet, we are called to grow up spiritually and adorn ourselves in God’s love for us.  We are to put on a new dress made from the crucifiction of Christ.  We can take parts of our past with us and weave them into our new gown.  These are reminders of how or why we have chosen to follow Christ.

Growing up is hard at times, but there are also wonderous times.  Make an effort to soak up every moment and don’t be sad like Princes Jo Jo when you out grow this world.  Jesus has prepared a new life for you just as Queen Mommy did for Jo Jo.

God Bless….

Today's Blessing August 26, 2009

Today was special.  This morning, I decided to put off the laundry and the daily cleaning routine.  I even skipped my morning walk with good reason.  I went to visit a dear friend.  She and I worked together for many years.  We taught across the hall from each other.  I taught English and she, math.  Since math and English are from opposite sides of the brain, I don’t know how we managed to be such close friends.  I know why…. she is absolutely wonderful.

She was there when I was pregnant with my son.  She witnessed the horrible pregnancy I experienced.  She came to relieve Mark and I when we were in the hospital with him.  She came just to rock him and give us 15 minutes to ourselves.  She was there when I came to work crying because my baby girl went to kindergarten.  She was there during the early years of my children’s lives.

She always made comments on how a good mother I was…..I humbly explained that it was all about love.  She has said on numerous occasions that she hoped to be half the mother I am…..and every time I heard it my response was always….you will be better!!  She is such a warm caring soul.  Full of life and spunk, she made life in the workplace bearable.

Well, today, as I said before, I went to visit her.  She has been a mother of twin boys for a month now.  She radiates.  Yeah, her tired eyes mirror the lack of sleep and the tireless hours spent tending to the needs of her sons.  I watched her this morning lulling her son to sleep.  Softly patting him and whispering sweet “I Love Yous,” the tired little bundle fell asleep.  I sat there in total admiration and awe as she gently cuddled her baby boy.  Wow!  The love between those two!!  She obviously enjoys spending cuddle time with each son.  And to think she was afraid that she would love one more than the other.

I don’t envy the late night feedings times two and I am sooo glad my two have long outgrown the diaper years.  But as I watched today, I caught myself wishing I could be half the mother she is today…..

My Sweet Little Angel….

When Joellen was just a tiny tot,  I always included stories in our bedtime routine.  Sometimes, I would read a book.  But sometimes,  I made up little stories about princesses  to tell.    At one time, I documented some stories as tokens of days soon to be gone by.  Smart move!!  Anyway, this was one of Jo’s favorites…. I must have told it to her a zillion times…..

Did you know my mommy is an angel?  Before she was an angel, she was a teacher.  One day, she got very sick and had to go to heaven.  This made me very sad.  I would cry a lot because she was gone.  I miss her so much.

When she got to heaven, she saw how sad I was.  She decided to gather up all the baby angels.  She lined them up just like she would in her classroom when it was time to go outside for recess.

Clapping my hands, I would imitate my mother.  Sometimes blowing a recess whistle, I waved the pretend angels to me and in the most teacher voice command, “Time to line up!”

She walked down the row of baby angels looking for the perfect angel to send me.  She had a good eye for finding the perfect little girl.  She saw some that couldn’t sit still.  She passed up the ones who whined a whole bunch.  She didn’t think I could  handle the ones who cried really loud.

I paraded down the imaginary line, pointing at some “angels” and shake my head.  “Too wiggly.” I declared, wiggling as silly as I could.  “Too silly.” I stated putting on the silliest face.  “Won’t stand still and too loud,” came next with corresponding motions.

Walking over to my little toddler, I continued the story……

Then she came to your sweet soul.  She fell in love with your sweet smile and your big brown eyes.

I cupped her sweet angelic face into my hands and said………

“You’re going to be perfect.”  With God’s permission, you were sent to me.

Now I am not sad because my mommy picked you out just for me.  And every night when I say my prayers, I tell Jesus to say thanks to Grandma Carol for my perfect little angel.

I ended the story time with a tender kiss on her tiny nose.

Ahhh, such sweet endearing memories……

God Bless……

Rubies

My life is pretty mundane.  I get the kids up and ready each morning.  I pack lunches, make breakfast, and write little love notes to put in their lunch boxes.  I make sure the latest fashions are clean, folded and waiting for wear.  I kiss each one goodbye, including Mark and remind each             to have a nice day.  As soon as the house is empty, I  go through my morning routine: picking up the house, laundry, meal planning and I will stop there… I don’t want to  bore you with the gory details of scrubbing toilets! There are days I am called away from my daily routine to interpret or to sub at a local school. Everyday seems to blend together as the mundane stales.  But I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Like I have said before, I have done the career thing and I don’t think the 8-5 workforce is for me.

Do I seem to be complaining? Using words like mundane and stale, doesn’t sound like I am thrilled to be home.  On the contrary, I love it.  The very reason I do all that I do is love.  My husband practially every morning says he’s  spoiled.  I get up in the mornings and make breakfast.  Not because it is expected or that I have to, it is because I want to do those things for my family.  Mark and the kids would love cereal and “Eggos” for breakfast.  In fact, this summer I bought cereal and we had it for breakfast for an entire week.  By Friday, the kids were wanting homemade pancakes!

The love and respect I have for my family keeps us close.  I don’t worry about my relationship with my husband nor my children.  I take the time to listen, hug, and to make them feel special.  I couldn’t imagine not doing things for them.  It saddens me to think it took 11 years to  realize my career got in the way.  Perhaps it is maturity on my part. Plus, being financially stable does help a lot.  It is a legacy I hope to instill within my children and my children’s children.

Out of love and respect, comes a foundation for communication between all of us.  Mark and I do not hide the work it takes to mutually agree on budgeting, keeping a strong marriage, and building a Christian home.  We respectfully and lovingly discipline our children and discuss with them the choices they made.  We also are big on praise.  It is something Mark and I model daily by how we interact.  That is another legacy for our children and our children’s children can live up to.  Don’t get me wrong.  We have argued before.  However, never in front of the children and really our arguments are respectful and don’t  last for a long time.   Mark and I agreed a long time ago never to go to bed angry.

I guess I have said all of this just to sum it up by saying…… as a family we all are worth more than rubies to one another…… and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

God Bless