Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Happy Mother's Day to You

On Sunday as I drove to church I felt a pull on my heart for mothers. Not just any mothers, but single mothers. Each year, we have a tea party in the two and three-year-old Sunday School classes for the children and their special ladies. Usually we have one or two children whose mothers are not there for some reason. This year we had several. What is even more difficult is our Father's Day Picnic next month. There will be even more children whose fathers will not be there. We have men in the church who are "dads for a day" for these children.

I guess I was so struck because I was thinking of the difficulties I face. I have a wonderful husband, thank God. He works very hard many hours each week and sacrifices much of his time for our family. Still, I have challenges. He works nights, so I alone care for our three children during what is often the most trying part of the day. I supervise homework and bath time, I shuttle the kids to dance class and choir, I make dinner and do the bedtime routine, and I break up the fights.

Then I realized that for all that I do, single mothers do so much more. They often have no one else to work while they care for the kids. They must do both. They have no relief coming in the morning when dad comes home as I do. They have no back up when it is time to discipline or they just need a break.

Of course many have friends or family that help and some dads are involved to an extent, but often single moms are alone and the absence of a second parent in the home makes such a difference.

To the single moms, I want to say that I commend you and I pray for you. Please know that your children appreciate all that you do (whether they know it or not) and you are valued for who you are and what you are doing for your children. Happy Mothers Day to you.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Why didn't we do this sooner?

I have decided to clean my house. Not just the surface stuff, but really clean. And get rid of stuff too. This is the longest we have lived anywhere - five years of our ten year marriage and I am starting to feel my stuff closing in on me. Not just my stuff though. My kids stuff is also taking over the house. With three girls, we have tubs full of Barbie toys, doll clothes, Peek-A-Blocks, Little People, Potato Heads, and cars (my husband is sharing his love of cars with his girls). We also have several doll houses, Barbie cars, strollers, and odds and ends. It finally got to me! I had each of my kids (the older two) take one big tub and empty it. They then each filled the tubs with things they wanted to keep. They could only keep as much as would fit into their tub and two big things (doll house, stroller, etc). I thought they would be mad, but they loved it. They raced around the house, working together, deciding what to keep and what to leave. When they were done, they got a trash bag and filled it with the leftover toys. No tears, no whining, nothing! My house is clean and my kids are happy? How good can it get? OK, I know it will end quickly, but I will cherish it while it lasts.