Father’s Day

Today’s post is a tribute to my husband- one of the best dads I know!

When I was pregnant with our first child, I had to have surgery about 20 weeks in. They had no beds in my room after my surgery, so he slept outside in the lobby and came running in every time he heard nurses or doctors talking.

He worked tirelessly to let me stay at home with the kids. Our first child was not a happy baby. He would come home from construction work all day to watch our crying son so that I could work part time and stay up on my math teacher skills. 

He drove me 2 1/2 hours to a specialist on his days off when we found out we were having twins. He was with me during that surgery. 

He woke up to do feedings and diaper changes, knowing full well he had to wake up earlier than me. He did it to give me a break. 

After working all day, he will sometimes cook, play, read to, help with homework, work on the car or house, or even help with housework. He is selfless- he has let me choose where to eat out more times than he probably wanted to! He still listens when I have had a bad day and need a good cry. He listens to the kids’ hopes and dreams. He encourages us all to do our best. And his jokes make us all laugh- it instantly makes my day better!

He packed up and moved us because of a job opportunity for me. Not many men would do this. He didn’t have a job at that time. He drove 4 hours one way each weekend to be with us until he got a job 4 weeks later. That time apart was the first time we were apart since we were married. It made me really realize how blessed I am when he is around. 

He put off his passions and dreams, taking jobs that were hard and not what he wanted to do, just to provide for us. 

He loves the kids so much that he is willing to take time to train them. He takes the time to talk to each kid. He is not afraid of discipline, he knows the end result is a trained child. 

He loves God, and it shows. He demonstrates God’s love to me and the kids, and I am eternally grateful. When we were dating, I could clearly see what kind of dad he would be, and that is one of the reasons it was so easy for me to fall in love with him. His spiritual guidance is the #1 reason why I am glad I married him.

So, Daniel, this post is for you. Thanks for loving me and being a great dad. I hope someone reads this and is inspired to be a better dad because of your example. I know 4 kids who are better because of your example, for sure! Happy Father’s Day!Image

Time

Well, it is summer vacation for my kiddos and me… which is a fabulous time for teachers! I get to be home with my kids and that always makes me remember my time as a stay-at-home mom. I love that I can still spend so much free time with them!

Time. We all have it. We all don’t think we have enough of it. 

My baby girl just had her K5 graduation. They do it up with the cap and gowns and everything! I have seen so many high school graduations, being a high school teacher, but it is a little different watching your own kid. I know it was only K5, but it got me thinking. How am I spending my time with my kids?

How do you spend time with your kids?

Most of us, summer is a time with a little bit more freedom. Even if you don’t work in a school and have to work all summer long, your kids don’t have homework, so your evenings are a little less stressful. What are you doing with that time?

In our house, we believe that change comes from relationships. So we pour everything we have into our kids. We spend time with them, listen to their concerns, pray over their struggles. 

Here are a few things that we are doing with our kids this summer, feel free to steal any of our ideas!

1. Building up skills lacking during the school year. The kids have summer reading, so I have to make sure they do that. But some of them also struggled with math, so I am using a subscription to http://www.aleks.com to help my kids get stronger. I have been thoroughly impressed and recommend this to parents!

2. Spend time with friends and family. We are visiting my husband’s side for a week and my side for a week, since neither of them live where we live. We are also getting together with friends by doing different playdates.

3. Spend one-on-one time. I have 4 kids, so I decided that each night, one would stay up past bedtime to do something with mom and dad. Last night, I made salse from scratch with my oldest son! It was his choice, by the way! It is a fairly easy way to make sure that I spend time with each of them, plus there is just something magical about staying up past bedtime! 🙂

4. Do something new. I firmly believe that our creativity comes from our varied experiences. So if you only do the tried and true, you probably aren’t very creative. I LIVE for new adventures and, well, tend to be creative. Do you want creative kids? Break out of your comfort zone and do something different. We will be visiting the FL Keys. We haven’t done that before. But you don’t have to be that exotic. Even if you just do a “staycation”, look up things in your area that you haven’t done before. 

5. Relax with your kids. Turn on a family movie and just snuggle! Wind down together. My youngest daughter gets mad when we don’t do our “tradition”. That is, watching a 20 minute episode on netflix and just snuggle. We do this all year, not just summer! It is a small amount of time spent, but the rewards are great! Plus, I am now very knowledgable on all things cartoon….

6. Spend a little extra time in spiritual development. Pray about what needs work in each kids’ life. Pray over how to handle it and then get focused and started! If you are feeling really brave, ask your kids what mommy or daddy needs to do to be a better parent or person! Then you know what you need to personally work on during the summer!

This school year went so fast for me- I honestly don’t know where all the time went! But we, as parents, are accountable for the time we have with our kids. And it really isn’t that long before K5 graduation turns into high school graduation. My challenge is to not take this time for granted. Embrace it and spend time with your family. Train them, pour into them, love them. It is our job, after all!

 “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” Deuteronomy 6:5-7NIV