Humility, Compassion, and Understanding

daddyhandParenting is a humbling process. I say “process,” not “job,” because while the end goal of this adventure is a constant, the day-to-day details change over time. My biggest dream for my children is that they would grow up to love and follow Jesus. Period. But how to encourage them in that direction looks very different as they age from 7 days, to 7 months, to 7 years. And the frequent changes and mistakes I make as I adapt to my maturing children remind me how much I still have to learn about this parenting gig. Continue reading

Wacky Things My Kids Have Said: #8

I overheard this exchange between my then 6-year-old and 4-year-old. Being practical-minded males, they were discussing the purpose of what is perhaps the single most illogical part of a typical female outfit.high-heels

Samuel (age 6): Do you know that she has a very long dress that comes down to the ground?

Kiyoshi (age 4): Yeah.

Samuel: That’s why she has to wear that kind of shoes.

Kiyoshi: Yeah, with the tall-standing things.

So there you have it, ladies. The purpose of high-heels is simply to keep our dress hems out of the mud. If you dislike wearing high-heels as much as I do, just get your long dresses shortened a bit, and you can wear flats all the time!


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Other wacky things my kids have said.

Image courtesy of bigjom at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Hereditary Colorblindness?

Unlike the United States, Ukraine does not have many dark-skinned people, or Asians, for that matter. It's a fairly homogenous white society, which means that anyone of non-European descent stands out and might be exposed to ridicule, or worse. However, although I'm half Japanese, I've been fortunate.

I have not  experienced any racism here. Until recently. Continue reading

Wacky Things My Kids Have Said: #6

Samuel, age 5, about our apartment mate's departure to attend classes at the medical university:

"Mommy, she's going to the universe!"


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Other wacky things my kids have said.

Image courtesy of nuttakit / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Wacky Things My Kids Have Said: #5

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You know you live in a Slavic country when your 5-year-old points to a picture of a group of world-famous cartoon characters from the Hundred-Acre Wood and says,

"Look, Mommy! Winnie-the-Pooh and Tigger and Piglet and Igor!"


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I would be honored to have the privilege of encouraging you on a regular basis!


Other wacky things my kids have said.

Wacky Things My Kids Have Said: #4

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This morning after I put my youngest down for a nap, I curled up on the couch with my Bible. This ritual is one of my favorite parts of the day. Samuel and Kiyoshi were playing quietly, because by now they know that when Mommy is reading the Bible, they are not to disturb her. Or so I thought. Before I was halfway through, Kiyoshi began to bounce around my little retreat, making all sorts of little boy noises. I put aside my reading for a bit to have the following exchange:

Me: Kiyoshi, what is Mommy doing right now?

Kiyoshi: Reading the Bible.

Me: And what do you need to do when I'm reading the Bible?

Kiyoshi: Flush the toilet?

*****

I just want to know―how would you have responded to that one?
I have to confess that I laughed. It just burst out before I could stop it!


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Other wacky things my kids have said.

Wacky Things My Kids Have Said: #3

I started this series of funny quotes from my kids many months ago, but then I stopped posting my children's bizarre comments after #2, even though I had several others in the queue. And really, many of them are worth sharing. So here, for your reading enjoyment, is the continuation of
Wacky Things My Kids Have Said.

Kiyoshi hugging his bear on the toilet

Kiyoshi, age 2: "Look! The poops is hugging each other in the toilet!"

(Ahem, this quote had nothing to do with the hugging in the above picture.
He was really talking about his poop in the toilet.
I didn't look to see if they were actually hugging or not.)


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I would be honored to have the privilege of encouraging you on a regular basis!


Other wacky things my kids have said.

I Love My Boys

Sometimes I don't think that I can take the rampant testosterone flying about our apartment. On most days it seems like if someone isn't screaming, yelling, growling, or roaring, then something is being broken or hurled through the air.

Rather than being the serene and gentle mother I would like to be, I just feel vexed and grouchy as I scurry from one disaster-waiting-to-happen to the next, all while trying to cook meals, keep house, and manage to maintain a semblance of personal hygiene. I find a bit of consolation in the fact that none of our boys has figured out how to throw things out the window . . . yet. That's a good thing, because much of the time, my patience is about ready to exit by that route. I always considered myself a patient person―until I had kids. It's humbling, which is probably good for me, and it's forcing me to rely moment by moment on Jesus, and as far as I'm concerned, nothing could be better than that.

Continue reading

Guest Post for Sprouts en Route

Just prior to our recent move, I wrote a guest post for Sprouts en Route, a blog by Kristin Spencer, another mom and missionary who writes about how to travel with kids and still enjoy the journey. It was part of her Ultimate Family Road Trip series. I wrote about how to keep order in the car. I mean, let's face it, keeping your kids in order when you're at home can be difficult enough. The mere thought of trying to do it on a road trip makes many parents cringe. But it doesn't have to be that way. Our family's lifestyle necessitates regular road trips where we spend ten or more hours in the car in a single day. But we enjoy it! Road trips can be fun for the whole family. You can read my tips and ideas for car travel with kids here.


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