Join Them!

My kids are great teachers.  They teach me how to slow down.  They show me what really matters.  They help me get back to the basics and focus on the Finer Things.

Children are all about simplicity.  Feed me.  Clothe me.  Love me.  Feed me.  They like to be fed, too.

I had a couple of choices when my little scavengers bellied up to the apple crisp bar yesterday.

  1. Scold them and move them and get them busy on something else so that i could get something done.
  2. Join them!

I joined them.  🙂  There were plenty of apples to go around, our morning snack was taken care of, and we had lots of fun!  Oh, and the apple crisp turned out perfectly yummy, too!  And for those with a keen eye, that would be a sports bra around my baby’s neck.  She had started folding laundry for me in the other room.  Such good helpers I have!

Check out Living Simply Saturdays at Keeper of the Home.

Face Time with Memory

When our first-born was a baby, Lance and I would sometimes talk about how much fun it will be someday when she was ready to play board games. We’d reminisce about the games of our own childhoods: Trouble, Monopoly, Life, The Farm Game, etc.

“Someday” has definitely arrived! We do have a challenge on our hands, though, because the skill levels of our 5 year old, just now 3, and 1 year old are vastly different. One game that we love that we can all enjoy at the same time is Memory.

The game is labeled for ages 3 to 6, but we think it’s fun for all ages… with a few adaptations.

  • To accommodate young attention spans, we don’t play with all 36 pairs (good thing, since I doubt all 72 cards are ever in the box at the same time!)
  • Our kids (the older two) each look for 5-10 pairs to play with, then we arrange those face down.
  • The one year old can be temporarily entertained by the remaining cards.
  • We arrange the cards in rows in a rectangle, rather than scattered randomly. That seems to help us (and I do mean us) keep track of matches better.

  • When we’re playing with just the 5 year old, we add more cards.
  • Our three year old enjoys his own “solitaire” version: he scatters the cards face up and finds the pairs… an important preschool skill. “Look, mom! It matches!” (I don’t homeschool, but if I did I’d keep this game handy for him while I worked with my school girl! Except… maybe I wouldn’t have him use his sister’s Disney Princess version) 😉

Memory has proven to be a versatile, fun game for our whole family. Check out Happy to be at Home for more Face Time ideas!

Pandemonium

Recently, while dining on my now-cold meal (do moms ever eat warm food?) at our loud, chaotic supper table after a typically crazy day of spinning my wheels, I looked up through the happy chatter (and clatter… and beating of the platters…) and caught my husband’s weary, laughing eyes. 

He winked.

“We asked for it.”

Yes.  We did.  We asked for it.  Actually, we begged and pleaded with God for three long years.  Please… a family.

And He answered.  Six years ago this month our infertility struggles ended.

And now at supper time  

  • I eat cold food
  • I get up from the table 42 times
  • I feed someone else from my plate (because food tastes better off of mom’s plate)
  • I mentally calculate how much food I’m going to have to buy in 10 years
  • I soak it all in

We asked.  He answered.  And we are grateful for the pandemonium that makes us a family.

Check out Laura’s blog for more Gratituesday.

Face Time – Week 1

Another great challenge from the ladies at Happy to be at Home!  (No, I haven’t forgotten my clutter.  Yes, I’m working on it.  One box down, one to go.  I’ll keep you posted.)  In August we are encouraged to get in more Face Time with the kids. 

You’d think that as a SAHM I would get all sorts of time with my kiddos, and I do… but too often lately I find myself telling them to get busy or creating things for them to be busy with so that I can “get something done.”  I even find myself getting cranky with them when I trip over them in the kitchen they are in my way or need me for something. 

A few little reminders, mom. 

  • The kids are growing and changing every single day.
  • The “something to be done” will ALWAYS be there.
  • The kids (sigh) may not always want to be the center of my attention.
  • Time with them is a gift I’ve been given and a commitment I’ve made.
  • “Something to be done”… I checked.  It’s still there.

Some things that we do well:

  • We eat almost all of our meals together and have great conversation. 
  • We read… a lot.  I’ve read through the entire Little House series and nearly all of the “Rose Years” with my 5 year old since Christmas.  My two year old joins us, or he waits patiently for his turn with another book.  I read to the baby when she wakes up in the morning or from her naps (she has just started to grab a book and toddle it to me… who can say no to that?!?)
  • My kids love to be in the kitchen helping me cook.  The 5 and 2 year olds can both crack eggs.  They also love to dump ingredients (usually in the bowl) and stir.
  • We’ve gone swimming (the whole family) several times this summer.

Some things we’re going to try, or try to be better at, this week:

  • Our family devotion time is sporadic.  We’ll be consistent.
  • We’re taking a mini-vacation later in the week, so there will be no “somethings that need to be done” to distract us me from our time together. 
  • I’ll take at least one, maybe two, with me to do some grocery/household shopping.  When daddy’s available I like to go it alone… but my oldest loves to be my “eagle eye” and scope out the sale stickers.

Thanks for the challenge, ladies!  If you want to join in, or to get great ideas for face time with the kids, head on over to Happy to be at Home.