Fun and (nearly) free: Dress-up party

You worked hard on making or finding just the right Halloween costume for your child last year and now it’s too small. Your house is overflowing with Superhero costumes or you have a trunk full of tiaras and princess gowns. Round up costumes and props. Why not get a group of parents and children together…

Fish stories and a life of discipleship

Waves splashed against the side of an old row boat and rocked us gently from side to side. My eyes were fixed on my red and white bobber as it floated on a shimmering cobalt blue Minnesota lake. I gripped my fishing rod with both hands and tried as hard as a small child was…

Is there time for church?

Some people say that families are busier than ever these days, but I’m not convinced that’s really true. I grew up in a family with six children all born within 10 years, and our house was a hub of activity. My mom did an amazing job caring for us, and my dad worked full time…

Whose toy is that, and are transitional objects okay?

Did you or your child have a favorite toy or comfort object? Apparently my big brother had a favorite. It was a teddy bear he called Ruby. Here’s a picture of my brother holding Ruby, me squeezing a cat, and my sister with her cute smile between us. It wasn’t until a few years ago…

First days of school, a mom’s memories

At this time of year social media is filled with firsts. Preschoolers may be taking their first steps away from the security of home, kindergartners are beginning “big school,” teens are heading off to high school, and college freshmen may be settling into their first dorm rooms. Those big moments are frequently captured in photos…

17 observations after painting my office

No matter where you place your drop cloth, paint will fall on an area that is not covered. A painting project takes twice as much paint as you thought you would need and will be twice as challenging as you expected. Painters who plan to work in small closets or between built-in spaces should have…

I’m lost.

Some words seem to have a different meaning for kids than they do for adults. One of those words is “LOST.” Getting lost means a lot of different things to grown-ups. If grown-ups don’t know where we are, we say we’re lost. If we don’t know where we’re going, we say we’re lost. If we…

The value of a dollar

Look at this crumpled piece of paper. It’s money. Well, actually, it is money, but it isn’t paper. U.S. currency is made of cloth that is 3/4 cotton and 1/4 linen. That’s why it doesn’t fall apart when you accidentally leave it in your pocket and wash it in the washing machine. Do you know…

Music isn’t always pretty.

Music often causes a physical reaction. When you listen to music you might tap your toes, sway back and forth, experience goose bumps, or even cry. Your heart may beat faster, your breathing may slow down, you might pick up your step, or you may feel calm. At a high school or college football game,…

Let’s think about thinking.

My mind is racing. My brain is full. It’s that time of pre-Vacation Bible School frenzy that Children’s and Family Ministers experience every summer. So this morning I decided to write about something completely unrelated to VBS and hope the fog lifts or at least clears enough so I can see my way to the…