Tuesday, June 19, 2018

the importance of playdates

I've been participating in playdates for many years.  Mom's groups and playdates are great for moms and kids to have friend time.  Something I realized today is the value of playdates in socializing a child to the manners of guest and host.  Things like "don't jump on the couch, and don't run in the house" don't carry the same weight if it's not your parent saying it.  If a child is in other people's homes on a regular basis without their parent there, they aren't given the guidance consistently.  The care giver just survives, after telling the child a few times to stop.  When the child is picked up the parent may ask "How were they?" and who gives a full account of every infraction.  No, that would be rude, but it is good for children to be consistently guided, or nagged. 

lP had a habbit of whining and scolding me for the chatting that usually goes on in the driveway at the end of a playdate.  I told her on Monday that she may not talk to me that way, sternly.  Ironically, today she and M were running in someone's house and I said it was time to go, and they sweetly encouraged me to keep talking.  "No, you need to go." I told them.

I'm so grateful for the freedom to be with my children so much.  If they are not behaving, "Is it time to leave?" is always an effective threat because they know we will walk out the door.  I really want them to be able to have confidence that they know how to behave.  I think knowing what is appropriate behavior and dress is a real asset.  I'm not concerned with fashion, just modesty and not destroying people's homes.

Monday, June 18, 2018

then there were 3

G and M are off to camp this week and it's like a preview of 7 years down the road.  Having kids is crazy and beautiful.  It's so hard then they grow up in a flash.

BTW, love thy neighbor as thyself.  Who is your neighbor? The people who are different from you.  That's what Jesus was telling us.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Lucky kids

P took these girls on a kayak trip Friday.  It was a 2 hour trip up and down the creek led by the county naturalists.  I'm so glad they worked hard and that P could take them.  He got the worst sunburn he's had in years.  But they had a lot of fun.

On Saturday we went to Otown and I was able to go to the temple and pick up a tent for a family that needed to borrow one.  P took the kids to a lake with a park around it.  There were swans and ducks in the lake that let the kids get really close. 

P is so good at being present and involved with the kids.  I've never known such a good dad.  I'm grateful our kids get to have such a good dad.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

fun with grandma

 We used a tarp with some soap and water to make a fun water play for the kids.  They had a lot of fun and mostly played nicely.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

impossibly beautiful

The natural beauty I encounter on a daily basis is astounding.  My backyard is lush and green, densely forested and full with wildlife.  I drive across bodies of water routinely and see the seasons change in the grasses, oysterbeds, and beached vessels.   The water in our backyard flows to the Matanzas river.  We've gone kayaking there and enjoyed the mazelike path through the grasses and surreal passage through the bridge I usually drive across. 

I take the children to the beach after dinner.  The sun is heading down and there is always parking.  The children run ahead as I get the youngest out and dressed.  As I head across the boardwalk I see below and before me, them careen across the sand to the water.  There is a tidal pool and tiny waves don't tempt the big kids, so we stay together splashing, wondering how we have such beauty.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018


Tonight at church there were 15 kids and 3 sets of besty friends.  When we were dividing up for an activity in 2 groups, the kids were counted off, 1s and 2s.  The bestys protested and the leader was giving in.  I asked if we could not give in to them and she supported me not supporting her. 

When I was serving in Young Women there were a few friends that were always together and the other 8 girls felt excluded by their closeness.  Nobody was leading, just being left out.  And then there was E who is deaf and excluded beyond exclusion.  Where the girls could have been doing good including someone, they were waiting to be included.

I hate besty behavior.  Be a friend, make new friends.  Don't use your friendship as an exclusive commodity to be coveted.  Besties are so involved in their dialogue that they disrupt and distract from lessons.  Besties mean teams are unfair for sports or academic challenges.  I'd love to see my children rise to enjoy challenging against their friends as they each lift those around them and enjoy a competition that isn't lopsided.

M's very fortunate to have a neighborhood friend who is a friend to all.  She's a great kid and includes G and lP.  She doesn't play game like pointing and whispering at people.  lP actually got in trouble because M told her to go home and PF kept bringing her back.  lP was supposed to have stayed home because I was taking the other two girls to choir.  It was tricky, but I'm so glad PF tries to include lP.

A best friend is not something to have, it is something to be.  When your friends are unkind or stupid, tell them.  When your friends are scared and doubting, support and comfort them.  Be a great friend. 

Saturday, May 26, 2018


Tonight we went to my friends house for dinner.  P was going to do the homeschool evaluation for their son.  It was so nice visiting with them.  I didn't know until today that B was in the band in high school .  It was really fun for P and B to share band stories.  I'm grateful for good people in the lives of our children.