Monday, April 25, 2011


Recently, I have been talking with a sweet friend about what they do to celebrate Easter in their family. Her reply sent me on a heartfelt soul search in which I have not stopped quite yet. She just mentioned that while she loves both sides of their families very much, Easter is too holy to sit around and discuss bunnies, eggs, baskets. Add to that the fact they have non-believing family, it takes the focus off Jesus. So they choose to stay home and have people in their home to minister to. Hmmm, that is very intriguing to me. Here is the part that I keep going over and over in my mind: how do we honor this holy day? What things are we instilling in our celebration of Resurrection Sunday that would show it is a holy day?

So with that running through my mind, I kind of changed up how we "do" things. We are blessed to have families that all are believers so I feel very strongly that we are to spend it with them. However, the prep up to that day was different. Tapping into my teaching genes, I pulled out books and looked up websites to help the girls understand more about crucifixtion during that time in Rome. We learned a lot. We watched the Nest Entertainment's version of the Passion of the Christ. Very good and not so gory for kids.

Next, on Good Friday at noon, we shut the curtains and turned out the lights as we read about Jesus being crucified. We had time alone in our rooms after reading that and the knowing more about what that meant, we wanted to have time to reflect. Then we went to Good Friday service. It was powerful this year. The drama team was quoting several verses from Isaiah, which is the study we all do in BSF so the girls recognized that right away. The songs were moving but what got me were the pictures they displayed from Mel Gibson's Passion of the Christ. My girls will never be the same and I mean that in a good way. To look upon that bloody, beaten body of Christ, knowing he willingly did that for our own sins is just too much. We then all had the opportunity to walk forward and paint a stripe on the cross for our own sins. Powerful!

I left in tears. I pondered what to expect on Sunday and this year, it felt different. We had discussed so much of the process that when the miracle of Jesus' resurrection came around it was truly a day of rejoicing! I am thankful that my sweet friend made the comment she did to get me thinking about this holy day. I pray I never take it lightly again. Sure, we still did eggs and we did baskets for the girls but they were not the focus at all. We have never done the bunny thing so not having that was not a problem. But this year, I did not worry about what we all wore as I have in the past. I chose instead to focus on who we serve....what a mighty God!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cherished Words

Today my girls went over to help a dear, sweet friend with her younger kiddos while she went to pick up another child as part of the Safe Family organization. Her oldest daughter and my Bean are good buddies. So, my friend took her two middle boys and was off to get this new little guy. Doodle was in charge of the others, leaving two 10 year old girls to help with a sweet three year old girl and a precious baby boy. That was a joy for her indeed! :) Doodle loves being with this family and helping them as they take on each new venture with the Safe Family little ones.

Upon my arrival to pick up the girls, I was greeted with sweet words. When my friend had complimented Doodle on being so awesome in helping and knowing just what to do, she had asked Doodle how did she get to be that way. Doodle's response.... Text Color
"Because I have a great mom."

Hmmm, ladies, let me say this right now. I am not myself right now. I am not worthy of such sweet words at all, but my daughter can see past that and knows my heart for her and for her sister. In all our structure and rules comes love and support. So, don't give up and know that they hear you. They are listening. They get that what we do is for their good and one day we all will get to hear those words. But for now, I will sit peacefully pondering this moment that God gave me and be grateful my 13 year old truly is amazing because she has a great God who she adores.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Something Different

Over the past four years, my entire family has trekked down to the panhandle of Florida to enjoy Spring Break together thanks to my parents. They always give that gift at Christmas instead of gifts. How I adore that! Giving the gift of time together rather than stuff is a blessing beyond words. Not to mention the gift of sunshine! Woohoo! This year, our family did not make that trek with the others. It felt odd to not be a part of the planning. We had taken a trip in January to Disney, just the 4 of us. We also really wanted to attend the Midwest Homeschool Convention in Cincinnati which happened to be the last 3 days of this trip. Add on top of that, my sweet man had taken a trip in October to walk the Grand Canyon in a day. When he is not in his seat at work, we don't get paid. So the reality was that we just can't have that many weeks off in a 6 month time frame.

So, my parents gave us the gift of money and freedom to spend this week as we saw fit without judgement. I LOVED that! My mom understood that teaching my kids is my job and this convention is the only teaching help I get through the year. We don't get in service workshops through out the year. So, she took the guilt I was feeling away when she told me I needed to go to the conference to help me finish well. We are staring down the eyes of high school and I want to be as prepared as I can before we hit that door. She understands that and I adore her for that gift. So, while they all packed up and we circled around for prayer time with them, I was sad. I was trying not to cry and start off some drama....I kept doubting my choice. I was struggling to feel peaceful about this decision for me as well as for the girls. What joys they missed out in due to staying home.

That was on a Friday. My girls were a bit sad for a couple days but we talked through it and prayed for the family to arrive at the beach safely. We had a couple days playing with friends which took the edge off. We knew we needed to do something to not make the time at home feel like a punishment, so we decided to head over to the lake house. We had dear friends join us as they needed a time of renewal from all the drama they have had in their life recently. Their girls are such a blessing to ours as they have learned how to take stands for what they believe with great joy. Anyway, the girls all played together and had a blast. Upon that first night, Doodle ran up to me and gave me a hug and said,' Mommy, thanks for doing this! Now I don't miss the beach." Wow! What an answer to prayer.

Fast forward a couple days and we are at the Midwest Homeschool Convention. We met up with my dear friend, Lainie, and her daughter, which happens to be on of Doodle's best friends. Those two girls just click. Again, after the first night of swimming at the pool with her buddy, Doodle again said,"Mommy, this trip is amazing! I really don't miss the beach now."

Now, let me say this, her saying that does not mean she did not miss her time with cousins or grandparents. We did! This was the missing of time on the beach. We all knew we would miss that time sitting there soaking in God's blessing. But this grateful heart came from feeling content with where we were and a joy for God's blessings with our Spring Break. I love how God works through your kids. Here I was worried that I was messing up, but with confirmation from my parents and Doodle, I know that this year, although it was different, we had a great break! (but I am so glad next year's convention is in late April so we can do both! Ha!) I am sure I will be posting more about the talks I attended and wisdom I gained. Amazing! But for now, I am thrilled that my daughter can see through what seemed like a sad situation and find the joy in something different. What a treasure!
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