Monday, May 5, 2014

The Winner's Circle

My husband comes home at around 1am tonight. I had been fine holding down the fort here alone for the last several weeks; but the last few days, I felt especially worn out.  As a homeschooling mom with a traveling husband, I feel a heavy weight to make sure my children are learning good habits to be healthy spiritually, physically, and mentally.  Because I'm constantly reminding my children about their duties, often times I worry that the moment they leave my house,  they'll drop the good habits I've tried to instill.

On Friday my children asked me when they could go to a dollar store to get me Mother's Day gifts.  With complete sincerity, I told them I didn't want them to buy me any gifts.  I told them, "All I want for Mother's Day is to feel like I'm doing some good… that what I'm teaching is actually sinking in."

As a result of my request, on Friday night, the older boys had a special meeting to which I was not invited.

The next morning, I awoke at 7:30am to the sound of children bursting through the back door and breathing heavy.  "What in the world???"  I thought, "They never leave the house without asking me?!?!"  I could hear that they were up to something, so I stayed quiet  in my bed and listened carefully. I heard clanking in the kitchen.  I waited a little longer… Soon, all three boys came into my bedroom like this with proud, loving expressions.

They reported that they had already read their scriptures and gone on an early morning 20-minute run in front of the house.  "How did I not hear you leave?"  I asked them in shock.  They assured me they were VERY QUIET.  Do you know how happy my heart was to know they wanted to show me that they had learned the value of spiritual and physical health… without me prodding them to do it? 

As they handed me the food placed ever-so-carefully on a tray decorated just right, Jordan said, "See? You did teach us something!  You taught us how to make oatmeal."  Jackson explained that the chocolate chips were supposed to be in a smiley face shape, but they kept moving around.  Oh my goodness… it was perfect just the way it was with the napkins, the shells, and the flowers.  

After breakfast, Jordan brought me an additional gift.  He said he knew how sad I am when the flowers die, so he pulled up a flower with roots and all and repotted it into an old pitcher.  

…and to top it off, they cleaned the kitchen while they blasted motivating music.  My favorite part was when they took a break from cleaning to do the Macarena. Lol!! …Yes!  Dancing is another thing I have taught them to do. :-)

Sunday morning, Jackson brought me a big bowl of macaroni and cheese for breakfast before church.  This morning I  heard Jayden crying.  I tried to get out of bed, and Jordan came and requested that I go back to bed for a little longer.  

A few minutes later, my three boys AND Mariah came into my room with Ramen Noodles… and baby Jayden.  They all reported that they had already read their scriptures and were off to go run while I stayed in bed to eat with baby Jayden.  

They got even more creative with my tray of food this time… elephants were included in the decoration. :-)

Jayden LOVED Ramen Noodles for breakfast!!!

After eating, I went outside to check on my little runners.  The little ones biked while I pulled weeds. 

 After about 20 minutes, I overheard the boys cheering so sweetly for Mariah.  My mouth dropped open at what I saw!  What a beautiful sight it was!! 

I cry now thinking how loved and adored I know she felt in that moment of exhaustion and seeing the support, love, and adoration from her older brothers.  The love they shared is what this life is all about!!  My boys called it, 

 "The Winner's Circle."  


Now… my challenge is to show my mother, grandmother, and mother-in-law how much they have taught me… there really aren't words to express my love and gratitude to them… but I'm going to try to honor them this week. I hope they feel fully encircled by "The Winner's Circle."