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Posts Tagged ‘raising children’

We’re thinking about food.  A little unsure what may be confiscated at the Canadian border, we’re trying to not be too attached to what we bring, but also want to be well equipped for miles of wild.  Chris (aka referred to as “Mom Chris” from here out; I’ve been blessed by many Mama’s in my life!) has cooked, shred and frozen 5+ pounds each of beef and pork.  I’m doing chicken and corned beef, maybe some lamb as well.  We’ll take dried beans and rice, herbs and spices, and hope to find veggies and fruits along the way.  I suspect I’ll have a lot to say about food as we travel.  Stay tuned!

All different forest animals on them for easy i.d. – look! a moose!

I’ll tell you something we did invest in: stainless 8-ounce stackable cups and silicone sippy lids!  We were blessed by a particularly ridiculously awesome sale that was irresistible.  Let me back up: With all of the other kids, we started them off on a My First Years plastic sippy lid.  They were interchangeable with Tupperware cups and were perfect.  We preferred the simple construction and ease of cleaning.  But apparently, now they’re “vintage” (insert rolling eyes here).  They’re a fortune on Etsy, and rarity on Ebay.  Realizing it’s time to branch out, yet resisting the modern sippy’s (I hate them), I went online shopping.  I wanted something that’s functional, multi-age-usable, organic’esque, and flexible.  Not just another container to play hair-pulling find-the-lid for.  These silicone lids fit the bill: They can slip onto just about any cup, including restaurant cups, etc… They’re BPA-free.  Frankly, they feel a little bit breast-esque, and I think Aury will love them.  The stainless cups stacked nice and tight, taking little space, and were slightly reminiscent of another childhood favorite: aluminum cups at Grandma’s — also expensive and hard to replicate at home.  And, well, aluminum.  No thanks.

Speaking of my Grandma… Several weeks ago my Grandpa had both a stroke and a heart attack, landing himself in a hospital then rehab.  Never having really spent time in the hospital, it sounds like it was quite the experience.  We were all glad to hear he was able to go home almost two weeks ago.  He built his house in the 1950’s with his own bare hands “in the middle of nowhere” (now five-ish blocks from the state university and smack dab in the center of a metropolis), and has raised all four of his daughters there from babe to now grandparents themselves.  Ever since I’ve known them, their house had an open door policy.  Every Sunday they made more food than they’d ever need, inviting any and all to partake.  I believe their influence in my life at an early age impacted a lot of who I am today, for which I’m thankful for.

Each summer when my mom and aunts were youth and still living at home, my Grandpa would load up a van and take the family and a group of students to Alaska, traveling the Alcan Highway, camping and living wild along the way and at their destination.  Being a teacher himself, he was able to spend quite a lot of the summertime exploring and teaching wild-living in a hands-on way.  I’ve heard many stories about these adventures (and many more!).  I know the memories made have been quite lasting on their girls.  It gets me excited knowing that several of our kids are at an age that experiences such as this hold and mold.  As much as I may resist the thought, it is likely one of our last big adventures with the olders.  Their lives are quickly advancing to independent interests and potential careers.  We cherish these times more than ever.  We also are incredibly proud of who they have become, and where they are heading: They have consistently made personal decisions to keep Christ their focus in all of it.  What they do beyond that is in His Hands.  We have no desire to shape that around what we would choose, be it keeping them at home forever (trust me, we’ve threatened it), etc…  I’ll share bits here of a rather convicting writing that our very dear friend Kurt Settles, now a pastor, penned:

Here’s what we don’t want: …we don’t want a son/daughter who is so dependent upon external support and validation that they can’t function independently, know right from wrong, be able to overcome obstacles and challenges, and be a generally useful member of their society.

treating them like they are the center of my world and this universe is a terrible tragedy.

…I am angry at parents who continue to raise generation after generation of immature, dependent, and fragile children.

…Christian parents need to stop worshipping their children and instead bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, raising them to be mature and able to function without the approval of man, seeking only the approval of God.

Though we value our time and understand our rather big responsibility of raising them (and adore them dearly, knowing that tho’ they are some of the most wonderful gifts this side of heaven), we realize that we serve a God who has a big picture.  We are simply a speck in it.  He has bigger plans than we ever could wish for our children (and ourselves!).  So as long as they follow Him, they will always be in the best place they could be.

Whoa, my entry about food sure took a different turn than planned!  I guess I just want to say that no matter how important all of these travel (life!) preparations are, and how well we try to execute them and retain their value, the every-moment-goal doesn’t change.  We intentionally sojourn as God followers with eternal-mindedness our goal for how we choose to use our today.  Our today is not a passing moment in anticipation of heavenly treasures but is an opportunity to intentionally share the gift we have been given to reflect Him instead of … well… anything else!

…magnificent though creation (everything we participate in) is, it is only a reflection of God’s glory.  It exists to reflect the ultimate declaration of glory, God Himself.  If we are blown away by the beauty of creation, how much more beautiful and awesome is God! – Andrew Scott

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Fifteen years ago we gave birth to a boy. A boy who started down the road to a daily regime of officially pursuing his dream of aviation this past fall. A gentle-hearted boy who has the courage to stand against (and for) things larger-than-life with solid ground. We are so proud of the little boy he was, and the young man he has become.

It’s been a couple of years now that Adyn’s passion for electricity has taken a detour to aviation.  I suspect both will be in his future, knowing both compliment each other well.  As the years have gone by, we’ve kept our watch for opportunity.  We’ve visited the local aviation museums and bumped shoulders with lovely folks who love to teach and share with him.  It’s been surprising how many lovely older fellows have really taken him under and have been excellent encouragers and a great resource to him.

Growing up, on my paternal side of the family, a lot of the menfolk had their pilots license.  Specifically, one of my uncles, and my grandfather.  The latter who ended built hangers and airports in various places across the country.  Fast forward to today, my oldest brother now flies – in fact, it’s his family’s #1 mode of travel for vacation and adventure in their Bonanza (a now upgraded heirloom from my grandfather).  The passion has clearly passed on, now 4 generations.

This Spring Adyn’s dreams started coming into fruition more practically.  To keep a long story short for now, he had the opportunity to have one of my (now deceased) grandfathers Cessna 150’s (small aircraft) that is in ship shape, which spurred us to accelerate his education.  We talked to a counselor, and planned out the last school year to prepare him for a specific program that would not only get him his pilot’s license through FAA-approved ground school, but further certification with OSHA, leadership training, etc.  The second year of this competitive program often graduates students straight into a career position.

working in the hangar

working in the hangar

Adyn busted his buns hard over the summer, and completed the needed pre-requisites in order to meet the program standards.  Because of his excellent grades and perseverance, the program made an exception to their age minimum, allowing Adyn to register at 14 instead of 17 (tho’ his 15th birthday was the day after the program started).  Proud parents here.

Adyn now attends classes daily.  Scott drives him in on his way to work, allowing them some quality man time each day, which isn’t time that can ever be taken for granted.  I take turns with another mom picking him/friend up.  Yeah… Just like that, I’m one of “those” mom’s.  But wow, I’ve sure come to appreciate carpooling!  We’re thankful that they are a wonderful like-minded family.  And until Adyn gets his driver’s license, it’s a huge blessing to not have to travel in daily.  He’ll likely have his pilots license before his driver’s license.  Amusing how different regulations are for flight vs. land travel.

"research"

“research” at the Evergreen Aviation Museum, where the Spruce Goose is parked

It’s pretty neat as a parent to sit back and watch your child grow into a young adult, with glimpses of their future.  We are very proud of his academic excellence, but more importantly, his fervor to follow Christ in all things.

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