I'm so thankful to the Lord for a recent prayer time. I was praying through my mom-anxiety about whether I should put my kids into activities, how many, which ones, etc. I just want to give them opportunities to learn new things and be ready to be whoever it and whatever God has planned for them. The world tells you that to be a good parent you have to be maxed out, driving to and from, and expose them to everything so that they eventually can excel at something. Then there are those circles that say contrary...that activities are the enemy and take away from family time. As usual, I live some where in the middle....trying to take the best of both sides. I DO want to expose my children to different things so that they can learn skills and also build confidence, team building, etc. I DO want to protect our family time and use it wisely to disciple them while they are still young. But what is the balance? Some families have struck that balance by saying one activity at a time or one per child at a time. It's different for everyone, and I don't think that there is a "wrong" way to do it. But, I do think that the Lord cares EVEN about this detail. And if we seek Him as parents (or guilt and anxiety ridden mothers...just being honest), we will find that He does have a plan.
Anyway, this prayer time where I was confessing to the Lord that I really needed Him to lead led me to really desire a way for my kiddos to learn transferrable life skills....cooking, sewing, etc. Things that are most definitely learned abilities, but are useful. Emily asked me the other day if she would take a class in college to learn how to cook like me. Precious, but no. That is my privilege as a parent...to pass on any giftings/skills I may have, but also to introduce them to others that I don't. I am blessed to live in the same city as dear family, one of which is my mother-in-love (yes, love...a term I picked up from a friend). Nana sews! I thought, this is great...Em can learn to sew AND spend time with one of the most amazing, servant-hearted, wise, and loving women I know....her Nana. I'm thankful that Nana said "yes"...and not just half-heartedly, but joyfully. She loves her grands. She pours into them each and loves them each (all 5, soon to be 6) for who they are individually. She prays over them, pursues them, and knows them inside and out. And they ADORE her for it!
At any rate, a few weeks ago the sewing session began. At the very first one, Emily didn't want to quit even after about 4 hours of work!!! Some of that is her incredible work ethic, but some of it is her high need for closure (have no idea where she gets that from:)). Since then, they've enjoyed several sewing sessions where Em has made a blanket for herself and dolls, a pin cushion, and several tooth fairy pillows for herself, brother, and cousins. I think she is hoping to make a blanket for our sweet Ethiopian niece/nephew next....the one we are so prayerfully hoping will join us soon.
Here are some pics of her at work.....