Friday, January 15, 2010

"Yes, you may play with your food."

Paint? Yes. Edible? Yes!
What on earth is on this little boy's face to make him look like he has a nice little 'stache?
That right!

Finger painted masterpieces?
Made with finger paint?

We decided to have a colorful snack the other day when we got this wonderful idea from a blog that a friend of mine had suggested would be great for mothers of young children.
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! It was A LOT of fun and we so enjoyed our creative little selves.
We changed it up by using whole wheat shortbread instead of pretzel sticks. Not by choice-just didn't have any pretzels!
We also used broccoli, carrots, celery and cauliflower to "paint" some paper plates with some brightly colored ranch dressing... along with some leftover frosting I pulled from the freezer to transform into "paint" for the shortbread to beautify each of my kids' paper plates!

A hungry artist's palette filled with edible paintbrushes and scrumptious paint makes for an imaginative snack-time that satisfies even the most picky of appetites.
Happy painting to you!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

"You're a bad boy, mommy."

As I sit here, reflecting, over steamy morning coffee and vanilla soy milk soaked raisin bran, I can't help but mentally continue to recount something my son said to me! He scolded,"You're a bad boy, mommy! A bad boy."
A bad boy?
I can't help but smile at his words. He can only associate being "bad" with things he knows he shouldn't be doing. Touching what he shouldn't be touching. Using a marker to write on something other than paper. Sneaking treats without asking. Hitting his sisters. Breaking things that aren't his to be playing with. Licking things that... well, you get the idea! He associates bad with the 'no no' things in his life as he perceives it!
He doesn't realize that that same toy that is off limits to him, is totally and wholly fine for me to be touching. "That's a bad boy!" He's learned that that's what's said when he has done something wrong. He's modeling me!
It made me think... When my kids are ornery or mischievous, or even just mess up because their flesh was weak at that split moment, or their curiosity got the better of them and overruled the replay of household rules in the recesses of their brain thus deciding to blur out the Holy Spirit impressing on their heart to do what is right, I'm so ready to stop them dead in their tracks, pop their sinful bubble, call them out on their blatant folly, and correct the naughty behavior right then and there expecting them to apologize immediately.
That's not necessarily a bad thing.
What I see as questionable and hypocritical is whether or not I am modelling our heavenly Father and letting the Lord deal that same way with me, with the sins in MY life, those little fleshly indulgences, those lofty behaviors that readily come up when a suited situation presents itself or when my emotions get the better of me. Do I allow Him to come in and do a work in my heart right away? Do I always hand over my pride, my shortcomings, my blatant lack of obedience and ask for forgiveness for being a "bad boy" right away?
Unfortunately, not always.
I've heard many times, "actions speak louder than words". Actions. Words. It's hard to do one without the other! Nice words can flow as smoothly as honey, it's easy to do and they sound sweet. Actions to that same degree take much more energy to carry them out all the while being sweet ta boot.

Actions-they speak louder than words. It's tough. Being a mother is a task too difficult for me to complete... on my own.

Being sensitive to the Lord's gentle correction, His leading, allowing His grace to penetrate my heart, change me from the inside out, transform the dark areas, bring light to the deep cavernous areas of stubborn flesh and heal the wounds of misstepped time... this is what he would have for me. As for my kids? He's called them to the same, He longs for them to come to Him!
What does this mean?
All I can do is... nothing, but model Christ! God can take over from there and do a work in their little hearts... He can do anything and everything! I pray right now, as I finish my breakfast and prepare to live another day as a mother-being watched, copied, modelled and imitated-that I'll be soft, moldable, replicating my Heavenly Father in correcting my little ones! That I'll lovingly point them to God, for Him to direct them up the right path. That I would be the mother that God has patiently called me to be, lovingly leading them to our heavenly Father, that once Mommy's and daddy's themselves, my children will in turn be sensitive to the Holy Spirit's gentle voice calling them to repentance when they have sinned and be the godly model themselves. God's reminders don'tt come in a demanding overpowering fashion--He's patient. loving. waiting. Desiring. God doesn't want us to focus on the inevitable "you're a bad boy" moments of life but instead after we've sinned, on repenting and accepting the readily given, eternally overflowing, free gift of forgiveness wherin we are changed.
My kids' perception of God's character is highly if not completely impacted by the relational interaction they get with us-their mommy and daddy and formed by those who have been placed in authority over them.
Lord, graciously help me to gently guide, lovingly correct and acceptably model YOU to these children today. Amen.
"You're a good boy, mommy. A good boy."
He has redeemed us, not to then forsake us but to treasure us! What a wonderful God we serve!

Monday, January 11, 2010

I heart red

I believe it's safe to say...

and I can't imagine...

there being any question...

at all...

when even the leftovers coordinate...

as to whether or not...


is my all-time, smashingly swellest*, favorite color...

Is there?

*not a word but used for emphasis nonetheless.