In our house, today marks the last day of care-freedom. For two of my five, tomorrow the alarms will go off. Tomorrow snooze buttons will be pressed. Tomorrow catatonic bodies will no longer be sleeping late or hanging around the house with friends. They will be sitting at desks trying to coax their brains to consider Calculus, Chemistry, Dostoyevsky and the likes.

And Mom will be right behind doing what we do, encouraging and reminding – “You can do this,” “Don’t sell yourself short,” “You’re worth more than a bad decision,” “Take the high road,” “Look for someone to encourage today,” … and so much more. The kids may act like they don’t hear us, but they do. This is a mom’s seed-planting/fertilizing time of life. We plant, we water, we weed, we fertilize – even though any sight of sprouting might be years away. We keep on keepin’ on, because we know (though they doubt) that these kids are worth it.

I guess a new school year affords ample opportunity for us to care for the gardens the Lord has given us. And in the midst, He teaches the gardeners the same lessons. For inasmuch as we love and would do anything for our kids, the Lord exponentially does the same – not just for the kids, but for us.  He would say (and does through Scripture) the same things to us as we do to them.

So when you plead with that 13yo daughter, “You’re beautiful,” “That outfit looks great on you. It doesn’t matter what you have on,”  “People are a bit more preoccupied with themselves than with you,” … Say the same thing to yourself. And walk into that Mom’s coffee with confidence.

And when you’ve hit the boiling point with a stubborn 17yo, intent on arguing because he can’t hear you saying, “You don’t always have to have be right,” “There’s more to the story than you know,” “Get over yourself,” “You would be happier if you would put others interests ahead of your own,” “You are amazing,” “A moment doesn’t define you,” “I see you and know you – You have SO much to offer,” … Stop and hit pause and do a quick self-check.

Where am I bull-headed and stubborn to the point where I can’t see or hear. Where am I buying into the world’s ways over God’s? Where am I wallowing and buying into some message that I’m less-than or that I’m defined by a moment … or an outfit? Then I hope I know that, inasmuch as my admonitions for my children to do or to act a certain way stem from LOVE and an overwhelming hope for life go well for them, God feels the same way about me. (I think it applies to all of us, even in our roles as brother, sister, daughter, son, aunt, uncle, grandparents, friends… if I slow down to consider it for a moment.)

So, as the school-year begins and as the schedule starts to ruthlessly rule our thoughts, I hope I remember to take a moment, to pause and to get on-course. I hope I know that the way I love these kids is actually surpassed by the way God loves these kids … and me.

And I hope I laugh along the way – a lot.

Here’s a little something to spur laughter. It’s a compilation of a few things no mom would ever say. My poor friends are so nice to put up with me and my weirdness. Here’s our Back-to-School Edition of Said No Mom … EVER. (We might have few more up our sleeves – Prom Edition, Toddler Mom Edition, Social Media/Entertainment Edition … let me know :)

Hope you enjoy. Thanks to my friends July & Wylly for playing  – and thanks for walking the road with me.


[Side-note: A fellow technologically-challenged friend wanted to share the video, but like me didn’t know how. (I’m just glad she laughed!) So, for anyone in our boat – If you want to share it, you can connect to youtube by clicking on the icon and share from there OR you can click here and FB share or email or whatever the video by itself by clicking the buttons below. I say all this, because I can totally relate to the non-tech-savvy. See also: a botched on-line school registration that will land me in the Registrar’s Office with all the other lame-O’s. I should’ve let the kid register herself. It would have gone much more smoothly!]

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