Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Welcoming Home

Last night as I was putting Vivian to bed, I heard the doorbell ring.  I did not think much about it because we typically have a constant flow of neighborhood kids in and out of our house.

When I went downstairs about 10 minutes later I found one of Davis's friends (we will call him C.), sitting on the couch with tears running down his face.  Davis was sitting nearby, and Keith had pulled up a chair and was talking to C.  It turns out that C's dog was put to sleep that afternoon and C was absolutely heartbroken.  Keith was asking C about his favorite memories of the dog and encouraging C to remember all those special times.  Davis did not say much, but it was evident that he cared for his friend as he sat and listened sympathetically.  After watching for a few moments, I couldn't help but to swoop in a hug that ten year old boy (and I realize that a lot of ten year old boys don't want to be hugged all the time).  We allowed the boys to spend some time playing Wii together and decided to ignore our usual strict 8:00 pm bedtime.

Although my heart ached for C, I was also pleased that he felt comfortable enough to come to our house when he was going through a hard time.  I want my home to be welcoming.  I realize that it is not the biggest home, or the neatest, or the best decorated, but one of goals is to make sure that anyone who comes to the door is always welcomed with open arms. 

I want to have a home filled with love.  Filled with laughter.  Filled with the love of God.  I want my children to feel happy, safe and content in our home.  I also want our friends, and our children's friends, to always feel that they can call or stop by no matter the time of day or the circumstances involved. 

Thank you God for our home.  Please help us to use it serve You and to serve others.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Late Night Visitors

The late night visitor is something that I both love and loathe.  The face of a sleeping baby/child.  The warm feel of a child's body snuggled up.  The realization that all of my kiddos are growing up much quicker than I like and that I should embrace these memories.

However, I love my sleep.  A lot!   Luckily, I have always been a heavy sleeper, so it is not at all uncommon for me to wake up in the morning to find that some child has crawled across me in the middle of the night to snuggle in between Keith and I.  And, if this does not wake me, I figure what is the harm?  I had one such morning with Eliza recently.  I woke up to find her little four year old body curled up next to mine.  Rather than jump up to take a shower, I savored the moment.  It was pure delight. 

Now, fast forward a few nights.  Instead of quietlly sneaking into our bed, I awoke to that same delightful four year old pounding on my shoulder saying, "Are you awake, Mommy?"  Did it look like I was awake?  What was she thinking?  It was 5:15 am.  On a Sunday. I was less than loving in my curt response, that no, I was not awake and that she should not wake people up when it was dark outside unless it was an emergency.

And then she cried.

What can I say?  I caved.  Scoped her up into bed, and snuggled her for the next hour.  And thankfully, she has not done anything like it since, but instead reverted to the more covert method of sneaking into our bed unnoticed. 

And then there is Noah.  Noah and I have an unspoken agreement that when Keith travels, he can sneak into my bed after the other kiddos are sleeping.  He is sly enough to know that we can't talk about it when the other kiddos are up, but it is a special routine just between the two of us.  (And, if I am being perfectly candid, he is the only kid that I like to have sleep with me because he sleeps through my morning alarm.  Any of the other kids wake up, and it is nearly impossible to get a shower in).  I love my "Noah nights."

I am sure my post makes it seem like we constantly have kiddos in our bed.  However, in reality, it does not happen very often.  Our kids are good sleepers, but on the occasions that it does happen, I love every second!