Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Weekend Wrap-Up, Way Back When..., Blog Linkage, Pinterest Stuff (Graduation Gift, 10 Things Children Should See in Their Parents' Marriage)

Good Tuesday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - I continue to love The Instagram. As of this second, I have 91 followers, 4 "well thought out" posts, and I am following 199 other Instagramers.

I am still planning on doing a pic a day for a year beginning June 1, 2014, so feel free to follow me at "enchantingb."

RANDOMNESS #2 - There are only NINE more days until The Chick leaves for Guatemala.

I am totally beside myself.

We don't have much more to do, and to be honest, we'll probably finish everything tomorrow... EIGHT days before The Chick leaves for Guatemala.

I'm writing a letter (or two) a day for her to read while she is in another country.

Each envelope/letter will contain a picture of me AND a piece of gum.

The Chick LOVES gum.

We're supposed to drop the kids off at the church at 3:15 a.m. the day of departure. I haven't been up at 3:15 in the morning since the kids were newborns and needed a 3:00 a.m. bottle.

It's been awhile.

We won't be going to the airport, but we'll be saying our good-byes in the church parking lot.

I'm not happy about that.

No, sir. I am not.

When Austin went to London, I stood in the parking lot of the airport until a big airplane flew over my head and I waved at it.

"How do you even know that's the airplane The Boy is on?" Mikie asked me.

"I'm a Mother. I know things," I replied.

I also know June 5 through June 12 is going to be the longest week in my life.

My papers regarding the trip say we can pick the kids up in the church parking lot around 9:30 or 10:00 the night they come home, but I'm thinking I'll be in the airport lobby at 9:00 the night they come home.

And there will be signs and balloons and streamers... and maybe an air horn or two.

Are those allowed in an airport?

Probably not.

The Chick is looking forward to the trip.

The Mom is looking forward to the homecoming... and the pics.

RANDOMNESS #3 - Brad and Stephanie held a barbecue this past weekend for members of their wedding party.

While I am not an official member of the wedding party, I had a few of those important people in my family, and I sent them to the event with instructions to take a few pics...

And they did.

Roxie took these two.

Zac, Brad, Josh and Austin. The "handsome" is almost too much, isn't it?

Roxie and Brad. When there is a chick, there will always be a selfie.

RANDOMNESS #4 - Roxie is a officially a lifeguard. She has a whistle and everything.

We've never had a real lifeguard in the family before, so I am all over this one.

I'm not going up to the pool to take pictures this week, but I feel the need to be there first thing Monday to capture her in all of her lifeguard-like duties.

She may or may not blow the whistle at her Mom.

She may or may not have her whistle taken away from her by her Mom.

This idea may or may not end well.

RANDOMNESS #5 - Sweet Mackenzie had her first birthday party this past Sunday.

She was pretty, pleasant and photogenic.

All of the qualities you really, really want in a one year-old.

Mackenzie had a Cupcake Party.

She rocked the traditional Birthday Tutu.

Cousin Lauren was a perfect birthday guest.

Amber, Mackenzie and Jared... with the cutest red bathing suit I have ever seen.

She didn't cry, but she let her Mama know she did not care for her Birthday Hat.

While the "smash" cake was a success, Mackenzie didn't actually smash it. She was really quite ladylike in her eating of the cake. One finger swipe of icing at a time, thank you very much.

Blog Linkage

1. Go to eighteen25 under My Blog List and read yesterday's post entitled, "15 Super Fun Summer Ideas." I know I would have used at least two or three of these ideas "back in the day."

2. Go to and read yesterday's post entitled, "Treasuring the Time." I love the thoughts, scripture and especially the word "intentional" used in this blog post.

Pinterest Stuff

Graduation Gift

Once a month, put $20 in a photo album for each of your kids from the time they are born until they graduate from high school (or college). Give the album to them when they graduate. Great, great gift!

NOTE - If $20 is not doable, $10 or $5 a month will add up very nicely, too!

10 Things Children Should See in Their Parents' Marriage

NOTE - This was written by a very wise husband/father, and I have left all the wording "as is."

1. Affection - Cathy and I are very affectionate. I like having my kids see me holding their mom’s hand, hugging, kissing, cuddling, etc.

2. Saying “I’m sorry” - I want to be quick to use this phrase, and I want my kids to hear me say it.

3. Affirmation - This is my primary love language so it’s easy for me to dish out encouraging words. My kids get a lot of verbal affirmation, but they also hear me directing it toward my wife.

4. Attraction - I’ll regularly say, “Isn’t your mom beautiful?”

5. Time - Our kids know we like to spend time together. When they see us steal time away to sit in the backyard and talk, or go on a date night, or sneak away for the weekend, that’s a good message I want them to see.

6. Laughter - We laugh a lot in our house and my wife’s cute sense of humor cracks me up. I like having my kids see that my wife makes me laugh.

7. Respect - Opening the door for Cathy, saying “thank you” and “please” and showing her simple signs of respect.

8. Faith Conversations - We’re not always praying in front of our kids, but they hear and see our faith conversations, and know we’re always talking about Jesus and what it means to be a follower.

9. The Value of Friends - Our house is well worn from the traffic of friends in/out of our house. We love having people over. The Fields’ house is a regular hangout for some incredible friends.

10. Servanthood - I know my kids have had a better example in Cathy than with me because she’s the ultimate servant. She is always asking, “How can I help? What do you need to make life better?” Serving one another is seen in the daily, little things and there are many opportunities to serve.

Kids are always watching their parents’ marriage, and yet too many marriages underestimate the power of modeling! Children are taking daily recordings of what a marriage looks like and those recordings are definitely influencing and shaping their view of marriage.

NOTE - I love, love, love this... especially "Faith Conversations."

Way Back When...

I re-post things from time to time, so that isn't anything new.

However, A Simple Life is over five years-old now. Since I'm in a different season of life as a mother of young adults, I still want to share ideas that worked for me and mine "Way Back When," as well as let you know how things are going on this end of motherhood.

"Way Back When..." will be a regular section now. It will simply be a place to re-post OLD (but perhaps relevant) ideas from days past.

These two ideas were first posted in May of 2009.

Kidnap Dad

Since Mother's Day is over, you can do this for Dad on Father's Day.

Create a plan for kidnapping your Dad from his Saturday chores to have lunch together the day BEFORE Father's Day (so it will be a real surprise). You can let the kids pack a picnic lunch to eat at a nearby park, or go to Dad's favorite barbecue joint. You can take him bowling or fishing or biking or to a movie. Plan something you know he will enjoy doing with the kids.

It's more about giving the "gift of time" instead of buying a gift. As parents and children get older, the gift most moms and dads want is time with their kids... whether it is one-on-one time or time spent together as a family. If you ask for this kind of gift now, as the children become teens and young adults, they can continue planning ways to spend TIME with Dad (or Mom) on his/her special day.

VARIATION - If the kids are preschool or elementary age, they can use water pistols and masks to "kidnap Dad." You can have the car running and waiting as the children bring their very surprised Dad out the door. (As long as you have a Dad that doesn't get carsick, you could even blindfold him to make it a little more suspenseful.)

NOTE - We started doing this with Mikie three years ago. The kids pick the restaurant destination and the activity each year, and although we don't physically kidnap Mikie, we do surprise him with a "gift of time." He loves it.

Peach Park Date

This is a good date for a parent and child because it involves one-on-one time in the car. It's a 45-minute trek to Peach Park from our home. It is our tradition to stop on the way to the beach, and on the way back from the beach. We enjoy homemade ice cream and other goodies.

However, on a date it would be a great time to talk, talk, talk. While most people go to Peach Park for the ice cream and the sweets, they have WONDERFUL barbecue, too. It is a very relaxing place to have dinner, ice cream, swing in the big swings along the path beside the restaurant, or just rock in one of their big ol' rocking chairs and enjoy the breeze.

On the way home, have a CD with some of your favorite songs from when you were growing up. (Elvis and Barry Manilow for me!) Talk about anything and everything your little guy or girl wants to talk about. Listen and enjoy.

I truly hope you have the best Tuesday ever! I'll be back Friday with Weekend Happenings, Way Back When... and more.

Take care, and I'll talk to you the end of the week.


The Enchanting Belinda

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