Monthly Archives: April 2008

hello out there…

I now have Skype. 

Before he left, Asen installed it for me so that when the time comes I can talk to my daughter and grandson and see them.  Glad he was here to help get it all set up.

Tomorrow early Asen leaves for the long drive east to Toronto to find an articling position as he begins his career in law.  Hope he finds something good.  He is a smart guy.


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Biked to work for the first time this year.  My legs need to gain some muscle I think.  Couldn’t get above third gear.  The head wind this morning was cold but biking home tonight should be easier and warmer.

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Full house

Over the weekend, I had all my littlest grandchildren around.  I love them but it made for a busy weekend.  I do believe I was so tired that I felt sort of sick. 

Last night Kieran – one of the not so little ones – was having trouble sleeping.  He has bad dreams that keep him from wanting to go to sleep.  So he came down and we were talking about it.  It reminded me of the nights my dad would come in to my bedside and pray for me when I was frightened.  So that’s what Kieran and I did.  He does not have a very clear concept of God.  He wasn’t so sure about having this God person around that he could not see.  But It seemed to make some sense that God cared for us and that he could depend on God to protect him.  So he let Grandma pray for him.

I think he slept.  He was up for breakfast when I was leaving for work.  

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And finally

I finished the book.

You know, I think this whole task of caring for children never ends. I can see that when I began having children, my intentions were the best. I would raise them to know God. They were a gift and I would entrust them to God.

So much living gets in the way of our true intentions sometimes. We did not become the idyllic Christian family that I envisioned – all my children growing up deeply devoted to God, serving him, all eventually married to good Christians and in their turn raising up more Christian children.

Instead, I have raised a hodgepodge of humans. Weak, sinning humans. Some know and follow God and some really do not care. Yet.

The author of In The Midst of Chaos talks about the “religious familism” that idealizes the mother who stays at home devoted to her children at the expense of her own life. A lot of guilt weighs down on those of us who have chosen another path. The author deals with this too. She speaks of a new type of family where mutuality in parenting is practiced. Imagine – giving the role of parent enough credibility that it is work worthy of sharing as equally as possible, juggling work roles outside the home along with caring for our children. Hard but worth it.

The author covers topics in the last few chapters on family life, choices families make about where they will live, their lifestyle that makes the home a mission field and a place for reaching out to others. She talks about the value of play, of playing together as a family and the importance of instilling in children a love of reading. Finally she discusses the need to let children go and the small griefs one lives through along the whole parenting journey.

I think that a similar book could be written for grandparents. I guess that I can learn from this book and extrapolate meaning from it that I can apply to this final stage of parenting. Choices also have to be made about how one will grandparent as well. And that is the place I am in now. Making choices, trying to find more time to do this grandparenting thing well; passing on some of the things I value to the little ones that are mine.

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Who would have thought

… that putting together a worship service was such a chunk of work!

I think we are ready.  Tomorrow the B team (B is for best) gets together to practice.  Sort of a trial run for me since I haven’t led worship for ages.  Getting things together for a service in my past meant choosing a few songs that the sole pianist would then play.  For a worship team things are a bit different.  We need music with chords as well as notes.  It needs to be in acceptable keys – so that the musicians do not have to struggle with 4 flats or something and so that our creaky voices do not have to reach unattainable heights.  Then to get all the words and stuff to the helpers who put it on the computer and round up a sound guy for Sunday.

And it all needs to come together in a way that will bring praise and honor to God – who is after all, the one we are preparing this for and to whom we want the attention to be given.  So I do not want to mess up.  I want it to focus attention on the one we are worshipping. 

It has given me a new appreciation for the wonderful people who do this week after week and seem to pull everything together effortlessly.  I know that it is a good piece of work.  I think that my usual role of playing is a whole lot more simple. 

Can hardly wait for next Sunday when I am back to my simpler task.

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Happy Day!

It was a very happy day when my baby came into my world at the age of 2 and a half. 

Today she turns 19.  She is a young woman of great potential – although she may not feel like it – being in the middle of exams to wrap up her first year at university.

sara cropped

Sara – Happy Birthday.  I love you lots.

Tonight, all the Lanoie women of Prince Albert are gathering at the best restaurant in PA to celebrate.  That was her request.  Sara will likely order her first alcoholic drink in a restaurant.  A big deal at her age!  She loves to celebrate in style!  And so we will.

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More from In The Midst Of Chaos.

In chapter four titled, Taking Kids Seriously, the author talks of how children are not taken seriously as being persons with a spiritual and philosophical capacity. We do not pay them much heed. Children do not have much to contribute any longer to the economic well being of the family. They began to be viewed as spiritually and morally innocent so were sentimentalized. Children born to families that are economically well off are prized possessions and given an abundance of material possessions with little thought to the well being of children in less fortunate circumstances. In spite of the fact that children are prized, it seems to be preferred that they are kept in their own circles, farther away from the adult realm of reality, losing contact with the wider group of non-family adults.

Today, the author says that the sentimental view of children is changing to one of the “knowing child” – to a view where the child must be taken seriously. She says:

What is required now is not just a shift in our understanding of children. Rather, we must consider how our new regard for their complexity is expressed as we practice our faith within the daily rounds of family life. Taking children seriously entails not just what we believe or how we think about children; it also involves new ways of including them in the shared life of faith. Children are active agents and participants in the practices of faith, even if they bring their own perspectives, capacities, and insights. Now we must figure out what this means for our lives together. p.65

Recognizing children as knowing spiritual and moral beings has consequence for how we treat and interact with children economically, psychologically and socially. Chidren need greater participation in the family economy and welfare, but we have only begun to scratch the surface of what engaging children more actively in this realm might entail. p74

If adults diminish children as active participants in religious practice, we both reduce the vitality of our own life of faith and overlook the human complexity children already possess. If we want to experience the daily care of children as a spiritual practice, then we must take kids and their faith seriously. p76

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