Friday, May 25, 2012

tough shoes to fill

today at a school function a mother of a boy in noah's kindergarten class approached me poised to share an anecdote.  often i will hear stories about his classmates perception of sonny as the chaplain at their school, but this one takes the cake. 

her five-year-old came home from school one day and said slowly, and seriously...

did you know that noah's dad...
is GOD?"

Monday, May 21, 2012

end of the year

it's that time of year again.  time to tell all the school related people how much we appreciate how they've invested into our children.  i am always in search of ideas that express thanks without spending too much and thought you may like to see what i found this year...

noah's kindergarten teacher is getting a vase/pen holder made from a washed out can and a few packs of pencils.  i just hot glued the pencils all the way around (it took about 34) and tied a ribbon.  it would be super cute with colored pencils too.

i've  made these clipboards in the past and they're always a hit.  this one was for the school secretary, but i made personalized ones for the choir director (music notes paper), PE teacher (variety of sports themed paper), and headmaster (masculine brown paper with crosses) as well.

Ari's teacher this year was a man.  they can be a little more challenging to buy/make things for.  i found these "manly" key fobs on etsy that you can have any quote or scripture or message printed on it.  when a newsletter came home with Mr. B's favorite verse on it, i knew i had to place my order. 


and finally when i saw this idea on pinterest it just called out to me.  the Krazy straw cup with Kool-aid and the free "Krazy Kool" summer printable...i couldn't resist.  Ari's classmates will all get one of these tomorrow on their last day of school.

Monday, May 14, 2012

words spoken to moms at a baby shower

As a little girl, I always envisioned myself as a mother.  And to me, that meant doing.  It was changing diapers, taking walks, doing art projects, helping with homework, instructing in faith.  You see, I am very good at doing things.  This was going to be easy.  Actually I was going to be a great mom.  I am an achiever and this was my ultimate task.  I was going to outshine any mother before me.  And as you can guess, this did not work out so well.  I was very good at performing motherly duties, but I was failing my children. 

I always thought as my children grew bigger their need for me would decrease, but as my boys have gotten older I’ve only become more and more convinced of my significant impact on their lives.  I have watched as my attitude alone can transform an entire day for all the members in my home. I have watched as my calm has lifted a child out of a spiraling melt-down or as my impatience has crushed a spirit.  I have seen my power for good, and my power to destroy. 

Quite honestly, it scares me.  And I’d much rather dive into a bunch of craft projects, organizational chore charts, and making cool bento lunches for my kids.  I can measure my success in those.  I can show my work.  I can prove my worth.  But actually being the kind of mother that sets a tone of peace and love in her home….that I have found to be infinitely harder. 

I searched for help in this monumental task and found a reflection on motherhood.  I read this and found it especially interesting… “Where does a woman find help for such an awesome assignment? The Psalmist said it well: “My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth”. 

God has special grace for mothers. You see, even though God is a father, he has a mother’s heart. He spoke to the nation Israel and said, “I will comfort you there as a little one is comforted by its mother” (Isa. 66:13). God comforts his children... just like a mom.”

It is the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit of God, who basically performs this motherly function. Jesus called him the Comforter (John 14:26), and sent him to us so that we would not be orphans (John 14:18). And isn’t it interesting that our birth into the family of God is described as being “born of the Spirit” (John 3:5, 6, 8,)? The Spirit of God is the one who bore us, who shared his divine life with us, who sustains us, comforts us, and teaches us.”   sounds a lot like the role I play in the life of my children.

The name Christ calls the Holy Spirit the Comforter (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7). The word literally means “one who is called in beside.”  I am the one beside my children.  Beside their bed when they go to sleep.  Beside them as they take on a new challenge.  Beside them as they suffer and beside them in their triumph.  I want to be with them.  To comfort them.  To give them what they need to grow in grace and truth.  And sadly, this is not a project I can find on pinterest.  It is not something I can do.  It is who I am.  Who I am creates the environment my children grow up in much more than any DIY project or healthy recipe I prepare.

I am the environment my children grow up in.   

 I am haunted by the wisdom a professor of mine said…”Our kids should be getting used to heaven by living in our home.  “family” is the outpost of heaven.  When our kids grow up and die, they should walk through the pearly gates and think “this feels like home”….just a change in geography.” 

Would my children feel a difference as they walk from life on earth to life in heaven?  Will it be a shock to their system, or will it be a seamless transition from home to home?

I plead with the Spirit, my comforter, to change me and make me the kind of mother that creates a culture reminiscent of  the Garden.  One that will prepare my little ones for their life eternal. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

you know how when people see moms out and about with their kids, and shopping list, and everything's all chaotic and they look at the woman and say..."wow! you've got your hands full!!"
i recently heard such an appropriate response...
 "yes, yes i do.  and i'm so glad they're not empty."

my hands and my heart are full.  and i have been in the company of enough women who's arms ache with emptiness to know that no matter how full and challenging, i'm so glad they're not empty.