Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Daily To-Do's with My Children

I’ve noticed recently that our family is in a bit of a sweet spot right now.

I’ve hesitated to say it out loud for fear of jinxing it. You know that old childhood refrain – “One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, cheeseburger, you owe me a Coke.” Of course, there’s nothing to it, but it still sticks in my mind with the consistency of gum on the bottom of my shoe.

Our oldest is 16, developing independence but still adoring time spent with brothers and sisters. Our youngest is five, so we have freedom from diapers and bibs and strollers. It’s become immensely easier to go just about anywhere or do just about anything.

But did I mention our oldest is 16? The clock is ticking. Loudly.

This blog post is not a list that includes things like taking vitamins or cleaning out closets or running them to activities.

These to-do's are relational. They didn't always exist, but as my children are growing older and we're counting months instead of years before the first might leave the nest, they've become more clear. I have my moments of spaz-out, thinking about how close they are to adulthood. It will, most likely, still be years before anyone leaves, but I'm not taking any chances.

I'm also a list-maker, an analyzer. So yes, I do wake up in the morning and praise the Lord for another day with my children. Then I mentally run through the day’s activities and deliberately think of ways to savor this one more day. The time will be over before I'm ready, and I don't want to have any regrets.

Say, "Good Morning." The first moment I see each child in the morning, they get a verbal greeting. The littlest boy and the youngest girl still like hugs or cuddles on the couch.

Smile, any chance I get.

Savor a moment with them. It could be just noticing them hunched over their bookwork and admiring their perseverance. It could be appreciating one of the girls' hairstyles. It could be when my oldest son brings me another shirt he outgrew and thanking the Lord for the time I've had with him.

Praise something or encourage them in some way. A good grade on an exam. A kind word or gesture to a sibling. A thoughtful question about current events or their faith.

Pray, hug, and say, "Good night."

I’m looking closely, and I find that blessings abound in what seems mundane.

What do you do every day with your children?

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  1. Nice to hear about your daily routine. Each stages of kids can be enjoyed. When we spend time with them they enjoy a lot...

  2. What a good picture of the children. I can't believe how much some of them have grown. Good to hear from you. I am sure your children enjoy the good mornings, cuddles, praises and the good nights. So many don't have that.

    Charlotte Moore

  3. What a sweet post and good tips for everyone. A smile in the morning is so nice. Your family is beautiful.
    Thanks for sharing this.
    Enjoy the rest of your week.

  4. Love that your routine is straightforward and full of love. Thanks for sharing with #TheCozyReadingSpot



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