I thought that my inspiring post would be a well thought out post about my volunteer work today. I am going to tell a bit about it because I think it is an amazing program but the inspiring part of my post is coming from our nightly ritual of bedtime books. Who woulda' thunk it, right? But about the volunteering.....last summer the kiddos and I started helping a local church prepare and deliver lunches for the kids in our small community who would be benefiting from a free and or reduced price lunch or breakfast during the school year. A wonderful woman in the church came up with the program about 7 years ago and I am amazed at how well oiled this process is and how many kids it helps. There are many volunteers from the prep and delivery to the food donations and coloring page copiers. After subbing at our elementary school for half of the school year I noticed the absolute poverty that exist that we all tend to ignore or just live with. There are kids who need food, nutritious and complete meals, every day, 3 times a day and a lot of kids are not getting those. So, instead of talking about it I decided to grab the kids and go help. We loaded up and asked what we could do. We took to preparing and delivering. The kids enjoyed it immensely, being able to help someone in that way and see the reaction for themselves is amazing. We helped all summer, every Wednesday, unless we were out of town or one of the kiddos was sick and knew we wanted to get right back to it this summer. With all the medical issues with my dad the past month, we were finally able to get back to the church to help today. I had T babysit G because he was being what we call a "tookie tail" and R and I headed out to help. It felt wonderful to be helping out in that small way. Delivering lunches to kids who need them is something that will never be a finished job. The program we help with is called Feed My Lambs. Jesus commanded this of us.
Something more inspiring than that? Well, it's a different kind of inspiring. Tonight while we sat on the floor with all of our new library books spread out in front of us, Griff had a moment of extreme clarity. He has these all the time, moments of absoluteness, where he knows more than anything what he will do, say or be when he grows up. He usually has the moments a few times a week and they come in declarations of what he will be for Halloween, which he obviously thinks about a LOT. This time, was a "when I grow up" moment which for all parents is fun to listen to. We were reading a book called, ZooBorns.....all about actual newborn baby animals in zoos around the world. G is a animal lover anyway and loves to read, watch and know about all animals, especially strange ones that others seem to forget. His favorite at the moment is a hyena.....I haven't been able to stop sneering at them from The Lion King....he loves them and wants to have one as a pet. So, we're reading away and oooing and ahhhhing at all the cute wittle babies and we get to the last page where there's a bit more detail into each animal and their endangered rank. I explained all of that to him and then he asked why they're going extinct. (Thank you, ZooBorns, just the conversation I was looking for a wind down story time.) Being the weird parent that I am that feels we must not shield our kids from some things but rather light a fire under them to make a change in the world as they grow, I explained a bit about poachers and then explained about sanctuaries and rescue centers for animals that are in danger. Well.....the fire was lit successfully and he got animated! He was so fired up and ready to go, telling us in detail how we would be a Undercover Animal Rescuer and he would wear a mask and a cool costume with fire on it and that he would probably carry a sword. He even went on to say that he would probably end up working at HEB so that no one would suspect anything, he wouldn't "wear his mask", he told me in a whisper. By the way, he's looking into having a spotted hyena and a hippo for sidekicks.
That is what inspires me. To see the glint in his eye and the happiness that his little fantasy created just makes my heart swell. He truly believes in himself and all that he can do. I can't help but think that has to do with the confidence we have helped instill in him. Watching a kid's dreams replay in thier minds is truly a gift and I am so happy and inspired that I have kids that are willing to break the mold and think outside of the box. They inspire me everyday....they also drive me batty but I guess that's their job.
|Congo...here I come!|