Well, you can't tell fall is here by the weather in Texas, but you can by the food we're eating around the Fletcher house!
We made caramel apples last weekend. The kids LOVED them! So did Mama and Daddy.
It was an ooey gooey mess, but lots of fun and oh, so sweet!
I would love to post pics of the kids eating them, but we stripped them down to their undies and took them out on the back porch to lessen the mess in the kitchen! So, just imagine these adorable babes smiling ear to ear with caramel on their faces, noses, and chins!
A wonderful friend of mine from Arizona, Ms. Judy, sent my kiddos some gifts she'd been collecting for them! What a joy!
They love the educational games, clothes, and stickers. They were really excited to get some stamps for craft time fun!
This week has been a test of my patience. Sadly, I have failed much. God is constantly refining me as I parent. It's such an amazing process. I'm so grateful God doesn't stop working on us!
There was a sweet bit of fruit I got to enjoy today as I took the kids to the play place in the mall. My kids had fun and were very well behaved. We even received a few compliments from other shoppers as they looked at some sparkly Christmas ornaments on display.
However, I happened to witness another family nearby whose children were anything but obedient and respectful to their mom. It was really sad. The kids pitched fits and threw tantrums; they were mean to each other and spoke rudely to the adults. My kids ended up playing with one of their kids so I was able to interact with her as well.
It really struck me as I "helped" them all share a toy plane we had brought that this little girl was really a victim. She is a victim of parents who either don't know what to do or don't want to do it. When the girl would become a little "anxious" for her turn, I'd remind her we were sharing. At the same time, one of the adults would yell across the play area to her "you leave that toy alone" (and then tell the other adult something like "she just can't share!"). The poor girl was not being TAUGHT how to share!
Before you think I'm throwing stones, I am often very much like that adult! Instead of sitting with my kids and showing them how to play, I sit back and yell at them for not playing as they should. What saddened me the most is that this little girl is the one no one will want to play with. Her parents' lack of willingness to teach/train her will result in her being rotten!
It made me realize how completely unfair my laziness is! When I am unwilling to do the inconvenient parts of parenting with patience and love, I am not just making my life easy. I am making their life very hard!
And, kids pay the price for years and years and years! Letting them be selfish may be easier than teaching them self-control, but it will give them much heartache when they get older and realize--the hard way--that the world doesn't revolve around them. It could even hinder their walk with God in major ways as they discover they were not created to be served, but rather to serve!
I have read a few good books on parenting that Joel and I have found very helpful. Our favorite is Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp. We went through the Bible study this spring with a group from church. The study guide digs into God's Word. I want to parent my kids based on what God says, not what anyone else thinks.
God is so good to let us see some fruit so we don't grow weary in doing good! I am finding more and more that His Word really does contain EVERYTHING we need for life and godliness.
Because the kids did so well, we came home and made cookies! (the pics above are from the play place and then cookie making...fun day!)