Alone

As homeschoolers, every Thursday morning we attend a co-op made up of about 80 families in our area. It ranges in ages from baby to senior in high school. All different types of classes are taught to the children, like art, foreign language, gym, science, the list goes on and on. It’s nice for Lilla as she gets that social interaction in a classroom setting every week.
The parents are all a part of teaching the classes. My bestie and I teach a class on photography for 5th graders. This is our first year so we are stumbling through it, but apparently the kids like it a lot and may be learning a thing or two as they go.
One of the children in the class, a young man, has some different learning and behavioral issues he is learning to overcome. You know, we all have different ways of learning and coping, his just seem a little more pronounced in a classroom setting.
Anyway, we are working on a project with the children to give to their parents as Christmas gifts. Last week we were going around the room asking the children what their parents would like a sign to say made of up letters. Some said faith, joy, family, the kids all came up with something different.
When asked what this particular boy’s mom would like he first of all struggled and then said, “She’d just like me to leave her alone.”
It’s one of those moments you kind of just stop and try to catch your breath to say the right thing. You don’t know what to say.
I’ve thought about that moment several times since then. Even this morning as I was washing the dishes and Lilla came up for no reason but I could tell she wanted something. I was rushing to clean and just said, in a hurried way, “Lilla, if you need something just tell me.”
She said she didn’t need anything and just walked away. I thought back to this young man and wondered if my own children felt that way. As though I just want them to leave me alone.

Sometimes through a particularly hectic day, when I am frazzled and pulled in a million different ways, that does feel to be the truth. However, I don’t want them to ever feel that way. I want them to feel loved, cared for, at home in my arms.
I’m thinking of ways to make them feel that way today.
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The Death of Santa

Before Michael and I had children, we always said we wouldn’t do the “Santa thing”. Didn’t want to lie, of course. Then, after we had Lilla, and we began to remember the magic and wonder it created in our lives as children, we decided to do one present a year from Santa. We try not to make it that big of a deal, the books we read and the stories we tell around this time of year have much more to do with the actual Christmas story than the North Pole and flying deer.

Of course, Lilla is a child and children are enamored by the whole idea of this big guy in red who gives presents and slides down people’s chimneys to eat all their cookies. Most kids pretty much leave it at that though, I think. Not my Lilla though. With Lilla, things are never quite that easy.
I was cleaning out the storage room yesterday when she wandered in and starting talking about Santa. I think she had been watching Rudolph. So she starts saying things about how nice he is, what kind of things he might bring, how we need to leave cookies, you know, the usual childhood concerns.

Then, out of nowhere she asks, “Does Santa ever die?” This, of course, floored me for a second. I don’t like lying to my children, I teach them it’s a commandment and it’s pretty serious according to Revelation 21:8. So, I took a deep breath and said, “Lilla, is there anyone who never dies?” She thought for a moment and said, “God.” I responded, “Right, and is Santa God?” She said, “No.” I then asked her if Santa ever sinned. She said that he did and we discussed how our sin is what causes us to die and so Santa would have to die too.
I then talked with her about how Santa is more about showing love and kindness to others. He is just
a guy who likes to give presents to people. And, in the end, that is something we should do too, think of others. Thinking about others before ourselves is in the Christmas spirit and what God wants us to do too. So, it’s not about what Santa brings but showing others kindness. We then talked about how truly the greatest Christmas gift was not brought by Santa but by given by God in the form of a baby.
She then went back to playing and what not and I was left there to consider how my own life in this busy Christmas time was revealing this story. And it made me grateful, grateful for a child that challenges me and reminds me what Christmas, and life for that matter, is truly about.

These are the moments

These are the moments,

I know heaven must exist

These are the moments

I know all I need is this

These are the moments

I thank God that I’m alive

These are the moments

I’ll remember all my life

I have all I’ve waited for

And I could not ask for more



Excerpt from Edwin McCain’s song, I could not ask for more


So kiss me

We are enjoying unseasonably warm weather in the midwest this week.

A perfect time to view waterfalls,

And wear light sweaters,

And catch ladybugs,

To act like a monkey,
To go for a slide,

Or a hike,

To shares smiles on the playground,

Or see the last geese of the season,

But, it’s ALWAYS time for kisses. 🙂

I want to remember

Years from now, when I am old, my house is empty and ever so quiet, I want to remember…
…the sound of Anna’s voice in the early morning, calling from her room, “Mama, Mama, Mama!”

…the clip, clap of Lilla’s bare feet as she runs into my room to “get me up”
…the smiles and laughter I get from Anna as she reaches for me from her crib
…the little arms reaching around my neck to hold me ever so tightly

…the warm feeling when I wrap up the girls from baths into their hooded towels and hug/dry them down on my lap
…the way Lilla makes up songs about everything and anything, just to stay up one more minute
…wet baby slobber kisses on the mouth from Anna
…Lilla’s uproariously, uncontrollable, contagious laughter

…Anna saying “cheese” as she cheeses it up for the camera

…Lilla, so proud that she can dial the phone and call Daddy by herself
…Anna dressing up in anything immobile, including my socks and the futon cover today
…the smell of fresh bathed babies, with cool skin and crazy hair
…the feeling of Lilla’s little hand in mine, letting me lead her just about anywhere
…earnest, faithful bedtime prayers from a 4 year old desiring her family’s salvation

…Anna running so hard the top of her body can’t keep up with the bottom

…my husband telling Lilla “Michael and Lilla” bedtime stories every night

…the excitement that a bottle of silly string can provide at a birthday party
…bubble beards at bathtime

…Anna’s raised hands, twirling dance anytime she hears a beat

…every precious moment.

Captured

We played outside today.

I took these pictures.

They made me smile.

Hope they give you a little chuckle too!

A Thing

Yesterday was St. Patrick’s DayWe went downtown, to the paradeWith friendsWe acted silly and mischievous
We walked, A LOT
We smiled, even more
SOME people yelled for more candy (oh no, not my child! LOL)
Someone also got a little bit of Colts Mascot love
And I got teary
Because, although it was just a simple day, it was precious.
And, I don’t want to miss a thing.

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