Thursday, July 9, 2015

Getting back to basics.

Our grandchildren were just here from the city, for about 10 days.  This included a trip to the beach and then back to the farm for a few days before returning home.  I was reflecting on the ways we enjoyed them while they were here and I think they enjoyed it to.  We went back to the basics.  We didn't feel we had to spend a lot of money or entertain them all the time.  They learned to just be, enjoy nature, family and work.  They played hard and they loved hard and they worked hard.  When bed time came they hated to go to sleep.  I think it was because they didn't want to miss something.

They had their cousins and each other and us at the beach.  Of course there were lots of swimming.  They enjoyed burring themselves in the sand and building castles or just digging holes in the sand, filling them with water and watching them wash away as the tide came in.  They went night crabbing on the beach and fishing in the ocean on a boat.  We sat on the porch over looking the view and just listened and laughed and talked.  They and their cousins were inseparable.  They slept together, ate together and just had fun with each other.  They did play games and visit the peer with their aunts and uncle daily but spending money was not the focus of the trip.  The kids were a part of the enjoyment of their aunt Jen and Elizabeth too.  There were times of simple shopping for t shirts, sleeping together, walks on the beach and visits for ice cream.  Birthday cake and the celebration of Paynes birthday.  He was given a journal by his aunt Pat and everyone wrote a blessing and thoughts about how much they loved him.

When they returned to the farm there was a little of a battle here and at the beach to compete with the television and their iPhones.  I know you may not have the resources we have here at the farm but as you  are creative God will give you the opportunity to enjoy your kids and let them live life with you as you both enjoy God.  Let your kids do life with you.  Don't feel you have to give them all the theology at once and entertain them or buy them.  Let them see the majesty of God in the big dipper, the figures in the sky of clouds.  To enjoy God while washing dishes or folding clothes.  Maybe caring for the yard or mopping floors.  The job may not be perfect and it may take a little more time but it is worth it in the long run.  Something I have wanted to model before my family is repentance.  They know I mess up and I want them to know we are forgiven and can begin again.  That I need Jesus.

They would ride the golf cart and sometimes have to push the mini bike all the way through the hills and pasture.  Sweat pouring down their little faces and a smile from here to Missouri.

Our grands enjoyed eating good home cooked meals, thanks to pop, ice cream and m an m's, cheese and pepperoni as an afternoon snack.  They went fishing, played with all three of my sons dogs.  They played in the rain and ran through the mud puddles and even jumped in the pond.  They got dirty and laughed and used their imagination.  They played hide and seek and went fishing with their pop.  We took pictures and captured memories.  Their uncle Lee came and got them almost daily to work the cows, dig ditches, and repair equipment and even bail a little hay.  They rode Lees horses with pop, Lee and Shealey.  At first they were not crazy about the work but Lee was determined to show them how and to show them the joy and rewards of hard work.  We gave them opportunity to help us in cleaning the table, doing errors and caring for each other.  MK our granddaughter, loved creating pictures and doing her tricks to entertain us all.

I don't remember an argument or a grumble for very long.  They were loved and hugged a lot.  They were told how much they were loved and how happy we were they were here.  What we appreciated in each one of them and how special they are to us and to God.  How we love them unconditionally and all the same.  That nothing they can do can change that love.

I was able to take my older grandson Jordan, to breakfast, just he and I.  We talked about his dreams and thoughts and plans.  What his struggles were and his victories and how God had been in his life all along.

The cousins cried as they left each other and piled once again in the bed and sofa with pop to sleep.  The time was drawing near and how could we grab enjoyment out of the last moments with them and their mom, was on my mind.  So I decided the best thing I could do was to help my daughter.  She, of course, was overwhelmed with so much on her mind of what to do to get ready to leave.  I would remember as she shared her worship music loves with me and we prayed for guidance for the remainder of the time.

I am sad they are all gone.  Our oldest grandson finishes baseball for the summer in a couple of weeks.  I look forward to his visits back to the farm, before he returns to college and playing there.  He and me, his pop and his uncle Lee are close and he just jumps in with each of us in whatever we are doing.  He hunts, fishes and works hard.  HIs highlight is what are we going to eat.  We take turns feeding him lol.  He loves being home with his awesome mom who of course spoils him and visiting his aunt Elizabeth who does the same.  It is funny how his heart is so warm and willing.

I am not trying to paint an unrealistic picture.  We, like all families have our struggles to get along and work through our differences, but God has been good to us.  I just wanted to share a few of the ways our grands got back to basics.  I miss you all so.

Grandchildren are Gods second chances for messed up parents!