Happy and carefree.
Just the way childhood is supposed to be.
I took the kids to the mall.
I can't even remember the last time we did that (months and months ago??) but I was determined to get there before December 1st when the Christmas madness descends in force. The purpose of the trip was to let the kids choose out a special gift to donate to a child at Marymead - as is now our yearly tradition.
As we drove there, we talked a lot about the purpose of our trip - blessing other little children. Instead of finding things we would like, we'd look for gifts for kids who may otherwise not get anything at Christmas. More than just giving a material gift, we talked about how some kids have really hard lives and maybe even no Mummy or Daddy... that buying a gift is a way to bless them and help them feel loved. Ok, some of the concepts may be a little complex but as we chatted about it, bits and pieces seemed to sink in :) Yes, it's a challenge, especially for my kids who rarely have seen the overwhelming splendour of a toy store!! But they rallied and took their task very seriously. They chose out gifts for a five year old girl and three year old boy with thoughtfulness and joy. It was pretty sweet to watch. There were a few mentions of '....and now can we choose something for us?!' but they mostly stayed on task ;)
I guess giving generously when it's a little bit hard to unclasp those treasures is perhaps the most meaningful of all, isn't it. Because if it's easy to give, then it doesn't have quite the same depth of generosity. Reminds me of the Bible story in Mark 12, where the rich easily poured in money to the temple from their excess, but it was the widow who gave the only little coin she had who was praised for her faith and generous spirit. Mmmm, slightly off track but I was just reflecting on that, as I saw the kids choose only one gift, knowing it was for someone else.
My sweet Eli was very focused on his mission, thoughtfully walking the aisles and exclaiming 'I fink da little boy would like 'dis toy!' over and over and over. His heart was filled with generosity of spirit. He finally settled on a skate board, and then (bless!!!) marched off looking for the boy to give it to. I had to quickly explain that the child was not actually there, but we would take our gifts to Marymead soon!
He is racking up the milestones so fast these days, I can hardly keep track.
This look? This look says....
'Mother, although I am a third child and you therefore hardly ever remember to offer me a sippy cup with my delightful meals, I am actually quite capable and I feel you rather underestimate my abilities. So when you happen to leave a sippy cup on my tray, though strangely with the handles removed for some reason, I shall show you that I can actually pick it up and drink from it unassisted. Yes, I know I am very clever.'
(I will try not to feel his judgement but instead just marvel at his skill, heehee!)
Project 52: A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013.
More highlights from the week that was...
|He taught himself to clap this week. And every time he gleefully smacks those hands together he goes 'AH!'|
|Exploring the many treasures in Great Papa's basement... this gorgeous highchair was just begging to be tried out!|
|Eli goes cruising on the trike, with Bee hitching a ride.|
PS Whoa, look at his long legs! Where did my toddler go?!
|Have dress, will twirl.|
|Tuckered out and a little dizzy from all that twirling.|
|Brotherly smothering cuddles|
|Can find the tag on any toy or cloth book. That pursed mouth.... Just.Too.Cute.|
|I am addicted to this face.|
|Looking so grown up in his collared shirt!!|
|Morning songs and games together before school.|
|He pulled DVD cases off the shelf then the allure of them enticed him into|
commando crawling across the lounge room!
|Man on a mission.|
|Just gotta reach that itch.|
|Exploring the toy aisle together - so many choices!|