Thursday, July 12, 2012

Something Worth Working For

            I pushed the wires through while the kids pulled off the coating and threw the copper into a pile. We stashed the wire in our giant trash cans then did it over and over and over again. For hours we were sweating, our hands were dirty and we smelled like wire. Did I mention seven hours. The kids were sure they couldn’t finish but despite their complaints I maintained my faith in them. At long last we swept up the last pile and took out the final bag of trash. The kids were tired, I was tired, but we did it.  What did we do it for you ask? Wait for it . . . VACATION! We have not been on a family vacation that did not involve visiting extended family for five years.  To put that into perspective, I only had two kids then, now I have four. An opportunity arose, but we didn’t have it in the budget, so we used our stash of copper (my husband is an electrician-he often comes home with wire scraps which we strip and recycle) to fund our adventure.  
I am now writing this from our hotel room. We have been swimming, kite flying, trail walking and now relaxing. It reminds me of a paper route my family did when I was growing up. I believe our goal was Disney World. I’m sure my parents did not find it as amusing as I did, but for me it is a great memory. I believe it was Gordon B. Hinckley who said, “Life is to be enjoyed not just endured.” Here is to the memories I’m enjoying with my kids, because we endured the work. Some things are worth working for.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Shattered Windows

     Now I love sling shots just as much as the rest of us . . . okay, maybe not as much as my son
who sent a rock flying through the neighbors sliding glass door. Oh yes, you can see where I’m going
with this. There was such fear in his eyes as he raced to inform me of his blunder before the neighbors called to tell me. I think it took all the courage his small frame could muster. My first thought was…poor guy, followed by a sickening how on earth are we going to pay for this. To my surprise however this is not what came out of my mouth. I was very calm. I tried to help him understand why what he did was so wrong, even if it was just an accident. He just wanted to hit the tree but happened to be 75 ft off his target. We talked for a while and then walked to the neighbors to clean up the mess and formulate a repair plan.

     There is something incredible about a shattered window. It is so fragile yet amazing to look at. Once it does tumble down into thousands of tiny shards it takes a long time to clean up and it falls in every crevice. It is dangerous until it has been swept and tossed, and is very expensive to replace.

      Our children, like windows are fragile. Just a tiny rock or demeaning word or accusation aimed just right can shatter their confidence in themselves, in others, and especially in their parents. I can replace the window, but I cannot replace Daniel. It is far easier to buy a new window than piece together the shattered soul of my child. I hope I am teaching him wisely, and treading softly, because he is irreplaceable.