Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Great Way to Connect with Your Kids

In today's day and age it can be very easy to lose our connection with our kids.  And it starts to happen at a younger and younger age.  I have thought about this a lot, as do many parents.  I have a 7 year old (8 in less than a week!).  And the thought that we may someday be separated by silence scares me.

So, with that thought and prayer I set out to come up with a way to keep us connected in some small way.  Something that would strengthen the bond we already have and I think it is a fun one at that.  Can you see me smiling?!

Journaling!  Now, to some this may originally sound boring.  Some people do not like to journal.  But hear me out.  This is not just any journal it is something that will be fun for both you and your kids.  It will also give your kids a way to say the things they would never say out loud!

First I set out to make something special.  I could go buy a new journal and so could you.  You can make it a date and pick something out the really speaks to the heart of your child.  My daughter is super crafty and creative.  UNLIKE ME!  I am not.  So I decided that I would create her journal even though it would be a challenge for me, because I knew it would mean a lot to her.

First I took just a small notebook I had and since I didn't want that white paper on the front that looks so boring I decided to add a cardboard front too it using rubber cement.  I forgot how stinky that stuff was!

After bonding the cover over the original I decided to draw on it what it was to be used for.  It was a journal for us so I put our names on it.  She helped me decide where the flowers and hearts went and decided when we were done drawing.  

Before I had put the front on and before she knew what I was up to I wrote a note inside the journal.  The note started out, "My dearest Charis! I love you so much..." and went on to explain what this journal was for and why I was doing it and then finally how to use it (we will get to that in a moment).

I can't explain to you the excitement in my daughters eyes when she read the words on those pages.  You could see that she was feeling really loved and cherished.  She was feeling like she was super important and that she was going to be heard and really listened to.  Now she is only 7 (soon to be 8) but being heard and understood is still important to her. 

My heart soared with excitement knowing that she was going to be sharing with me and I with her all the things that are important too us.  We were on our way to strengthening our bond we already have, making it unbreakable.

As for the practical use of the journal here is how you use it.  You give it to your child and after you read to them, do their devotionals, cuddle or talk... you know, all those bedtime things we do together?!!  When those are done and you have kissed them good night it is their time to write.  See, a lot has happened in their little day and this helps them get it off their chest.  They can write about what happened with friends, what happened with you, the family or the dog.  They can also write about what has upset them, made them happy or things that confuse them.  They can ask questions about God, boys, friends, or your family relationships.  

Most importantly when there is something that is too difficult to say out loud, they can write it here and not fear what will happen.  It gives them a sense of release and the sense of an open door.  They know they will be listened too.  Now when they go to sleep they put it on their side table, dresser or book shelf and go off to slumber land.  The next morning it is up to you to go get it, take it to a private place and read it.  

The most important thing you will need to remember I believe was something the Holy Spirit really wanted me to convey is to never act shocked, shaken, angry or freaked out over what you read!!!  I repeat, remain calm no matter what!  Or you have lost them.  This must always be and remain a safe place remember?!

Once you are done reading what they have written you then write back to them, answering all their questions, giving them advice kindly, and most of all telling them how much you love them no matter what they let you know.  

I have told my daughter that I might come talk to her about some things once in a while, but that it will always be out of love.  And if it doesn't sound like I am being loving she has my permission to tell me so.

Her heart was so filled with excitement.  She is ready to communicate and to connect.  This will be a lot of fluff for a while I am sure.  She is only 7 (soon to be 8) you know.   But as she gets older, and this tradition continues... How much more valuable will this be?

I would love to see your ideas on this... and pictures of yours.  Share your blog links and pictures and how things are working out for you.  Most of all... be blessed!

Friday, October 26, 2012


Abandoned, alone, what do I do?  My heart is beating so fast, what do I do?  It has been so long since she left.  I need help but no one is here and I don't know what to do.  She is crying and won't stop and I am scared that somethings really wrong.  She has needed a new diaper for so long and I don't have a new one.  I tried to clean it but it isn't helping.  She has red streaks going down her legs and her tears just wont stop coming.  God what do I do?  Something calms my heart for just a second, something brings peace.

"Sis you stay here, I will be back soon.  I am gonna go call dad.  He will come and he will know what to do.  Please don't cry no more.  I love you!  Just play with your baby.  I will be back."  As I kiss her head goodbye I feel how hot she is.  Fear jumps forward into my throat again and my heart beats faster.  I feel like I might be sick.

I turn and leave before I can change my mind.  It scares me to leave her alone but I have to call dad!  There is that peace again.  I am her big brother and it is my job to take care of her.  Where is mom?  Why isn't she back yet?  I hate when she leaves us like this!

It is a warm sunny day outside and I am scared as I walk up the alleyway looking for houses that might let me use their phone.  It is a scary neighborhood and we don't belong here.  Mom left us at a friends house but they haven't been home for a couple days.  I just start asking people if they got a phone and it takes a while before someone lets me in to use their phone.  As I walk into their home my heart jumps into my chest again.  What if they are really bad people?!  That peace fills me again and I wonder if it is God.  I call my dad as fast as I can because I know he will help and I am right.  He is on his way.

I run all the way back to where my sister is and go inside and scoop her up.  She is still crying and must have been so scared but seeing me seems to make it all better.  I hold her tight and realize how bad she smells, nausea washes over me.  I must have not noticed before because we were together in this small home for so long, or maybe I just blocked it out but the smell is putrid.  I notice now though and it makes me want to be sick.

This is not the first time I have been abandoned, we have been abandoned.  It has happened before, many times.  My mom works a lot and likes to party a lot too so sometimes she leaves us with different people.  Some people are ok, others are scary.  This time the people just disappeared.  Maybe they were with mom.  I wish she would come back.

I sit down with my sister and just wait for my dad.  Peace...   I can tell God is with me, comforting me.   God loves me even when those that are supposed to love me forget.  Because of Him, I can cuddle up with my sister and love her and forget the reasons I was afraid.  Once I was abandoned, but now... I am now saved.  Peace...

This story was loosely based on a true events and was written from an image prompt "Abandoned" from Free Write Friday.  To join the writing prompt click the button below and it will take you to Free Write Friday's page.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Fall Festivities!

It is fall again, my most favorite time of the year!  I love when the leaves change color and the mornings are crisp and foggy and then your afternoons are shattered with sunlight!  What a joyous time of year.

To start off our fall festivities this year we went to a pumpkin patch last week.  We got to play
with farm animals as well as go through a maze and ride a tractor drawn wagon out to pick our very own pumpkin.  

Of course no fun time at the pumpkin patch would be complete without your friend!!!

Then it was animal time!  First there were the cows, who really took a liking to my amazingly handsome husband!  I guess it's not just me that has a crush on my man!

Then there were the kittens!  There were six of them and boy did we want to take them all home!  We lost our Dakota and TeeTee this year and so this was a special time for our Muppin as she loved on the kittens.

Finally we were able to ride a tractor driven covered wagon out to the pumpkin patch and spend a good amount of time searching for the perfect pumpkin.  Muppin had such a blast and she didn't want to leave.  This whole day only cost $5.00, what an inexpensive way to create memories! 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

No More!

No More!

NoMoreBadgeThere are so many people, young and old that fall victim to domestic violence, abuse, sexual abuse and rape.    Many of those victims are children!  It is time we said No More!  It is time to talk to our children and tell them what can happen, age appropriately of course.  

It is a difficult subject so many of us say nothing, even if we are adults!  But saying nothing at all is dangerous.  It leaves the person especially children open to for the pain of shame.  The pain of hiding what they don't understand, what they can't deal with alone, what they shouldn't deal with alone.

Join me in spreading the word about a new movement called No More!  Help educate people, parents and help children.  Help spread the word on how to recognize the signs of abuse.  Every human being deserves to live without violence!  Speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.

Take action now and go to their website and see how you can help.  Say No More to violence!