Monday, July 11, 2011

Milestones

Milestones happen in childhood whether we as parents are ready for them or not. And it can be tough to deal with them sometimes.

This year Sarah will be 17 years old and she has an older boyfriend now. Yes, Sarah has a boyfriend who is 19 and getting ready to head to basic training and AIT school before becoming active duty. While Chris is not necessarily thrilled over this development, he agreed with me to give it time and let the two work it out amongst themselves. It's tough for him to do that, it's tough for me to do that but we love Sarah and we know she is a smart girl and we did our best to raise her right and now we have to start giving her more freedom so she won't go completely wild once she goes off on her own for college.

Now watching Elizabeth hit those milestones . . well that's a little tougher. Her reading is coming along nicely and I found some of the children's missions books at the church library. The chapters are short and the print is bigger than your average books, but they are a good thing for her in two aspects. First, it helps her learn about other people who loved God and wanted to do what He asked of them. Second, it helps her improve her reading skills while learning about God and others. It kind of seems like a win-win on this one, which is nice. However, there is another milestone that we are facing and I'm not sure how I much I like this. It's not a milestone I can stop, it's coming full speed ahead whether I like it or not. It's time to do some bra shopping for Elizabeth. Yes, my nine year old who is challenged in so many other areas is an early bloomer?! I knew it was coming sooner rather than later when she began developing a bit of hips at eight years old. I knew it was coming and yet I hoped with all my might that I was wrong. I wasn't. . .

So now as pay day arrives, I find I must do two things I don't like. Paying bills, is always something I dislike a lot and I have to take Lizzie shopping for a bra. For now I think the small ones will do, but who knows what we are looking at. In truth, it brings the concerns we have for her rushing back to us. We worry that our girl who wants to be liked so much by other kids will let some boy talk her into doing something she shouldn't do. We worry that we'll become grandparents with Elizabeth too young to take care of her own child. There are a lot of things we worry about, it is one of the reasons we are strongly considering whether to home school her through middle school or not. We are currently weighing our options. She does pretty well for me so far, we've been doing a small amount of summer schooling. We are working on improving our spelling, vocabulary and reading skills. Also there is a Math website that the school told us about that she can use to help her improve her math skills. It's something I plan to have her work on throughout the summer so she doesn't lose anything. Between the Math, and English help, she still has tons of free time to play outside and run the ants out of her pants.

Beka to is hitting milestones. She's no longer a small toddler, she's a full-fledged preschooler and she is starting to learn all of her shapes. And her letters! I let her do fun games that she doesn't realize are helping her eye hand coordination right now. Thank you Discovery Toys for the patterns game! It's helped a lot and she is reinforcing not only her colors but also her shapes at the same time and learning how to think critically w/o realizing it. It's all just a game to her. We'll be pulling out Candy Land this week too so we can learn about taking turns and sharing with others. All of these are milestones that are being achieved.

As parents we love when our children are small and miss those days when they hit adolescence. We wonder what happened to our small and easily cheered children, but milestones come. We may not always like that they come, but come they will and while we are powerless to stop our children from growing up, we can choose to help them embrace the changes that are happening in their lives each and every year that they are with us and pray we lead them in the ways of God and to be amazing men and women of faith.

I hope you all have a good week.
Love in Christ,
Maureen

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