Sunday, May 13, 2012

on being a ripe mom . . .

The kids all climbed in bed with us this morning and watched while I opened their carefully-wrapped gifts: a butterfly pin and a tiny clay pot from Emma (age 6), a rock painted to look like a lady bug and a hand print from Easton (age 4), a picture frame for the kids' artwork from Danny, and a card full of coupons from Eliana (age 11). Eliana's coupons had me in stitches. Does she know her mom or what?
  • I'll bake you brownies for your study carrel.
  • You can force me to help you with your dissertation.
  • I will clean up your desk (presumably after I eat the brownies).
  • I'll give you a free lecture.
  • You can force me to read your "thesus".
  • I'll write you a commentary for free! (This, she figured, would be cheaper than buying me one.)
I'm eager to think of a way that Eliana can help with my dissertation. Perhaps helping me pack and move my books into my larger study carrel will be just the thing. I'll get an upgrade later this summer with more shelf and desk space. But meanwhile, my kids are bringing lots of joy to the journey.

Emma wrote an acrostic poem using the letters of my name in honor of Mother's Day.

Ripe (Emma tells me this is much better than being rotten. 
         I trust she does not mean ripe as in "ripe old age" . . .)
Mousy (And this, apparently, means I slowly tell my kids what to do,
             which seems very unlikely, but it does, in fact, start with the letter "m,"
             which is the main thing.)

Another of her "pomes" goes like this:

roses are red
vilot are blue
evreyone loves you
lu! lu! lu!

I'm such a ripe mom, in fact, that this week I took the kids on a spontaneous field trip to Blanchard Hall with Flat Stanley, who was mailed to Emma by a friend in North Carolina.  

 We ate snack together and the kids did their homework, and then we explored all the fun staircases, round rooms, and odd windows in the 140-year-old building that houses Wheaton's top administrators and is named after the school's founder.

I showed them the room where I had my proposal defense last month, and we peeked out of a round window in the main tower to get a view of the Billy Graham Center, where my classes are held. As you can see, we took lots of pictures along the way to document Flat Stanley's historic visit to Blanchard Hall. We'll send pictures back to Emma's friend, Logan.

It's great having places like this just a few steps from our front door, and having children to explore them with me! I am a happy mother indeed.

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