Saturday, April 28, 2012

Life In The Every Day

I have seven children. The oldest was 18 when the youngest was born. Our house was a hub of activity and the sink was always full of dishes and the line full of clothes. It was busy. Some nights I sank into bed after feeding the baby and fell asleep in less than a minute. Some days my husband and I passed in the hall with one child or another in tow and shook our heads and smiled. Did I say it was busy?

Our youngest is 11 now and the kids are all pretty much self sufficient. They can do laundry and they load the dishwasher. They make their own beds and sometimes, their own meals, and there are only 4 of them at home, soon to become 3.

 June is approaching and our daughter from Ottawa and her husband are moving back to town. They are having a baby in the fall. The weekend after they move in, our second son is getting married. Not long after, our oldest son and his wife are having baby number three. has new meaning. I am no longer wiping bottoms, and spooning cereal into little mouths. My house stays reasonably clean. But my mind is busy. There are dates to remember, things I need to tell them, visits to be made, kindnesses and cautions to share....and I pray. The list of things I pray grows longer and longer. When they were little I prayed for health, for willing hearts that longed for God, and I huddled them all around me. Now they have lives of their own but they are still deeply entwined in mine and the prayers cover so much more. I can no longer keep them all at arms length but I can follow them with daily prayers and I can hold them up to God each time one of them comes to mind....and I do. It seems sometimes more busy than the physical labors...but just as I loved raising my small children, I love this time of my life. Mothering is a life long vocation and I am grateful God has called me to it. 

Psalm 127:3 Behold, children are a gift of the LORD,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Of Spring and Learning....

 Each morning I wake up early to the sound of birds outside my window. I hurry to pull on my jeans, grab a random shirt from the drawer in our still darkened bedroom, and find my running shoes. Then I slip out into the awakening day and enjoy all that nature has to offer. Some mornings the 11 year old joins me. He is usually still clinging to sleep and rather disoriented as he puts on his shoes, but once he is outside, he is transformed. His face lights up, his eyes open, and he pulls anyone of several bird calls out of his pocket, puckers up his whistle, and begins communicating with his feathered friends. He never misses a thing, every bird, every new flower, the clouds, it all draws him. He is a delight to walk with. Inside, he sometimes is a stubborn, preadolescent man-child, but out here, he is almost always joyful. Homeschooling works better out here too, so when the weather is nice, we take our books and off we go. The 13 year old is not quite so enthusiastic, but he too enjoys a nice sunny day, as long as it is after 7:00 a.m. 

Learning at its finest.
Red Admiral Butterfly

Oh, I remember Pre Algebra! Even though I've taught it 6 times, it still makes me cringe.
A ski shack roof and Robinson Crusoe! What could be better?
 We serve a marvelous God. And I am always thankful that His plan for our life has been (and is) to educate these children of ours. Often it is lovely, sometimes it has been daunting, but we are  not in this alone. God loves them more than we ever could and He has made each one of our seven children, unique individuals, that respond back to Him in their own unique ways. I love seeing that extended into children-in-law and grandchildren. Life is not easy, often it does not look like the pictures and impressions we make, but there is a steady hand that guides us, and we would not be here without it. "As for me, I trust in You, O Lord, I say, "You are my God", my times are in Your hand." Psalm 31:14,15.