back to school

Summer Done Possibilities Begun

I remember years ago listening to parents comment on this time of year. Statements like, “I cannot WAIT for school to start” or “It can’t come fast enough” just made me a little sad inside.

I wondered, “How could anyone ever feel that way about their children? Their precious babies. Their little miracles from Heaven.”

Well, let’s just say, “For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under Heaven.” And for the parents in this house, school is an activity under Heaven we are so grateful to have. That Solomon sure knew what he was talking about!

There was a season of my life that I couldn’t even imagine receiving delight from the first day of school. I’ve even written about the emotional challenges of our little ducklings setting sail into a new school year. But that season is o-ha-ver-er! Yep. Just imagine it like Jim Carrey saying it, making over into a four-syllable word.

Don’t get me wrong. I love my children. And so did all those parents I’d listen to years ago and wonder where, in their heart, could they want their children to leave them for hours each day of the week.

No. They loved their children. Just as much as I loved and love mine. They were just speaking from a different season.

For example, a season like the one we’re in. You know. Two teenagers in the house. TWO!!! One of them being a female! The cry of my heart day-in and day-out, “Dear Jesus, help us!” But let’s not put it all on the teens. Oh no, no. The others. Those other two gave me a nice illustration just this past Sunday for how very timely the school year starting was for our home.

Standing at the ironing board for over four hours was not the ideal way to spend my Sunday afternoon. However, it is my own fault.  If I didn’t despise the task so much I wouldn’t have to spend such large chunks of time. Guess it’s part of that whole a stitch in time saves nine thing. But I don’t do stitching either so, carrying on.

Here I am at the ironing board with a boatload of wrinkled clothes draped across the couch awaiting the steam, when Caden comes down stairs half smiling in an attempt to avert his need to cry.

He said, “Mom, Gavin bit me.”

Puzzled, I replied with a question, “He bit you?

Caden raises the leg of his shorts to reveal a bite on the inside of his thigh! The inside of his thigh! Wow! Talk about pain! And problems. Wooie! Gavin was in trouble! Yep. Say that one with at least three syllables to get the intensity of the moment.

While I’ve never been a biter, I do get that even the best of circumstances lose thrill and passion.

I mean I’ve seen the Disney traveling families who have had so many magical moments they are over it! Over. It.

I also remember back to those days having my very, very best friend in the whole entire world, over to stay the night. One night wasn’t enough. So we’d ask for another night. Then that night wasn’t enough so we’d ask ,pretty please, for just one more! You know the story. After a week we were so sick of each other that every little thing brought aggravation and annoyance. It was like, “When is she going home?!

Point is. Too much of a good thing is a bad thing. And too much of summer break, too much of staying home together in the same general area can end up turning something good into something not so good.

And another point. Enjoy the season. Soak it up.

My Mom has been the best example to me in that. So many times we say, “I can’t wait till this” or “I just wish I could go back to that.”

You’ll never hear my Mom carrying on about how she wished she could go back to soak up more moments. And the reason this is so significant is because my Mom only had nine years of her life to spend with her baby boy. We’d all understand wanting to live in the past when the past is the only place you have with one you love. But that is why we make the most of today, because we never know what tomorrow holds.

My Mom truly makes the most of every opportunity. She lives in the here and now. Life is happening today. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow. Today.

Which brings me to my most favorite back-to-school post I saw, and last focus point to share. It said, “180 days of opportunities to make a difference.”


Or as Junie B. Jones would say, “Wowie! Wow! Wow!

Each day is an opportunity to make a difference. Our kids walking the halls of their school. Our kids sitting at their lunch table. Our kids playing at recess. Our big kids pulling into the parking lots, sitting in their concurrent-enrollment courses and working at their part-time jobs. From taking tests to simple interactions with teachers and peers, our kids have an opportunity every single day to make a difference.  How in the world could we hoard that?!

And each day they head out the door and each night we tuck ‘em into bed, we echo the prayer of this back-to-school post,

Praying for a productive year filled with physical, mental and spiritual growth. New friends. New memories. And lots of fun!

Happy Back to School!!!!

Go make it awesome!

Colossians 4:5-6 NLT Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.

I pray this post spoke to you. Did you know I’m writing a book?! Would you join me in supporting these endeavors by subscribing to our blog and sharing with your friends and family? We can’t grow with out you.

Brooklyn ~ 11th —- Jaron ~ 8th —- Caden ~ 5th —- Gavin ~ 2nd *if Brooklyn wasn’t wearing heels she’d be eye-to-eye with her oldest little brother

Brooklyn ~ 11th —- Jaron ~ 8th —- Caden ~ 5th —- Gavin ~ 2nd *if Brooklyn wasn’t wearing heels she’d be eye-to-eye with her oldest little brother

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Back To School Essentials

New clothes, new shoes, fresh haircuts; it’s the components of a back-to-school routine. Then there’s a most dreadful task---school supply shopping. The back packs and lunch boxes are fun essentials, but that list of Crayola boxes, Ticonderoga pencils, glue sticks, pink erasers and 4x6 lined note cards, to name a few, are enough to do a someone in. This year was consistent with the priors. We filed into Wal-Mart with our supply lists in hand and we went to town, making piles in the cart for each child’s must haves. If only every item were available in one location of the store, or even better… in one stop; but as much as I dread the process, I look back to my first school-supply shopping spree with all four children in tote and no others are quite as bad.

Gavin was fresh out of the NICU, monitor and all. I lugged him in his carrier along with his monitor and the other three kiddos into the store for the annual event. We searched high and low, to and fro, obtaining the items one-by-one off the list. We toddled into the consistently long check out line, got up to the register, rang up and bagged the items, only for me to discover that my wallet was not in the diaper bag as I had thought! Talk about despair! I nearly had a meltdown right there with the cashier. To bring closure to the event, I have to tell you, I did have my wallet in the car, and I did spot someone in my church family to stand with the kids while I ran out to get it. All ended well, but nonetheless, did not go as planned.

Each year, we tend to get a little more, especially since all four of them are all in school now. It is certainly a tedious task, but in the process of checking off our back-to-school essentials, we felt it was essential to supply the kids some pointers for a successful year. Each day I posted a scripture on the fridge and we spent some time reading and discussing it with each child as we tucked them in bed, yes, even the fourteen year-old. One-on-one time allowed each child to share their thoughts regarding the passage relevant to their own age and stage. Here’s some of what we’ve been taking into our hearts and minds the last week and a half.


  1. Be a hard worker. Be your best and do your best— not for your teachers, not for your parents, do it for God.  Colossians 3:23 NLT ~ Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.
  1. Sometimes we don’t feel very confident or sure of ourselves, but don’t give up, God is with you, so be strong and have courage.  Joshua 1:9 NLT~ This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
  1. Cover yourself in God’s armor to fight what is wrong and do what is right. Stand strong. You are equipped for any battle that comes against you.  Ephesians 6:13-17 NLT ~ Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
  1. Life is a balance of pulling away and gravitating toward. Identify people you should keep a distance with. Always be friendly, but not close.  II Timothy 3:1-5 NLT ~ You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!
  1. You have power inside of you because of Jesus! Remember when it is time to do something difficult that the same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you!  Romans 8:11 NLT ~ The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, He will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.
  1. When you feel like you’re all alone and everyone is against you, remember God is on your side. He’s in your fan club and is cheering for you!  Romans 8:31 NLT ~ What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?
  1. Don’t worry about schoolwork or people or making things perfect. Talk to God. Be thankful even when it’s hard to find something to be thankful for. Ask for God’s peace to protect your thoughts and your heart, your motives and what you want.  Philippians 4:6-7 NLT ~ Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
  1. You can do anything! Don’t question or doubt yourself. He gives you strength to do what you need to do.  Philippians 4:13 NLT ~ For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
  1. You are taken care of and you have everything you need. God supplies out of His riches, a never-ending supply. You can count on Him.  Philippians 4:19 NLT ~ And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from His glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.
  1. Do good and be an example to those who do not know Jesus.  3 John 1:11 NLT ~ Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God.

*** Blessings to you for a strong 2015-2016 school year! ***

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