We are in the midst of a tumultuous week with Vacation Bible School, a 5-year-old birthday on tomorrow, and dentist/doctor appointments. I had spoken previously about our science projects taking off. Well, with a VBS theme of Power Lab, we’ve been “bells of the ball” this week. My husband’s made great geysers out of diet soda and Mentos candy, and the kids have come home each night pumped about the worship and whatever craft they completed. They’ll take the show on the road in a couple of weeks, and by the time they get back, we’re within a week of the “official” start of school. Did time fly by, or was it just me? I don’t think I got half of the projects done that I set out to complete this summer. Oh, well, they’re not going anywhere and neither are we.
I’ve started with the annual start of school fever. I’m finished buying curriculum, minus a book or two. Planning gives me the same energy that shopping gives some women. Even the kids got excited this year about getting new planners. I guess I can say that this was one idea for ordering our day that was tremendously successful. As for my own planner, I definitely fell for packaging in buying my new Mom’s Plan It. This planner has tear-out grocery lists, a huge plus for me. However, as a scrapbooker at heart, I think what I really fell for was the opportunity to use these stickers:
As I got home and started to play with my new toy, I couldn’t help but look in more detail at the stickers, and about the larger implication of what is deemed important to today’s Mom:
Parties, birthday and otherwise (27 stickers)
Lunch dates (18 stickers)
Dinner dates (an additional 18 stickers)
Haircuts (18 stickers)
Games (school-related—18 stickers)
Phone calls (9 stickers)
Play dates (9 stickers)
Weekend getaways (9 stickers)
There were 54 total school-related, non-game stickers, including school events, class parties, no school and half-day stickers, open house and field trips. However, I couldn’t help but think, what does this allocation say about the new millennium mom? I don’t begrudge anybody a hair cut, but sadly, the message seems to be that a “busy mom” might be busy because she’s far more consumed with self interests/indulgences than with any higher callings of wife and motherhood. This is echoed in current feminist agendas that look upon the stay-at-home mom with disdain. I know personally I’d be a lot wealthier if I had a dollar each time someone looked at me and asked something along the lines of, “Do you work at all?” Translation: Is staying at home with your kids all day all you do? What’s even sadder to me is my own emotions as I answer the question. As I continue to grow more comfortable in this relatively new skin, I find that I, somewhat proudly, respond with a detailed list regarding my work history and current income-bearing pursuits (I always state first that we homeschool—hooray for some level of redemption). I am convinced that as a community of women, we’ve bought—hook, line, and sinker—into a lie that says that something is wrong with a woman whose primary goal in life is to minister to her family. There is even a television show—the 1,000,000th reality show—featuring stay-at-home moms who decide that they want to “see what they’ve missed out on” for a time. I’ve never watched it; having worked “a real job” and then coming home to the “real-est” job I ever had, even the commercial preview bothered me. I would love to ask them, what do you think you missed? Your interests and passions being sucked right out of you with all kinds of organizational policies and politics that have nothing to do with why you’re there in the first place?
Believe it or not, I didn’t mean to go there when I sat down to write this entry! I’m preparing for a conference with the topic, “Are You Willing to be Peculiar?”, and I guess that this must be the abundance of my heart right now. What I meant to say, and had to remind myself of after writing all of this, is that I’m thankful that most of these stickers will land in the notebook of a soon-to-be 5-year-old. However, the stickers I used were the ones that are most important—to me and to God. They deal with the uplift of family, of ministry to them and to others. Every drop of water I pour, every nutritious meal I prepare, matters to Him. May He bless my efforts to serve Him in my own small way.
Well, I must run. There is a cake to buy, and the oldest wants to develop her beauty store with some purchases from a supply store—ah, the teenage years, but that’s a story for another post. I’ve not checked in with my college kids yet, and we are only halfway through with VBS. Like Dawn at 4sweetums says, we’re crazy busy, but all good!