One Treasured moment

Call me odd, but I have never got excited to go on vacation! …. especially with the children.

Packing up four young children, packing food, suitcases, long traveling, car sickness, and nursing the baby on the road, um…. not fun!.  And then …. unloading, unpacking, laundry, and then getting everything back on schedule. Just  A LOT of work.

This was my thinking until last week.

This year, we were blessed by friends with a week away at a cottage!  I was excited, but hesitant.

It started off the way I have usually thought of it.  A little chaos, a little stress, but once we were on the road, I felt good. I can do this!

Is anyone with me on this?

That evening, at this sweet little cottage, we all decided to drop everything, watch the sunset and play on the beach.  It was the most perfect night. Beautiful sunset, right temperature and a cool breeze.  As we looked around, there was not one single other person on that beach, it was like we were the only people in the world. A calm serene came over me.


My husband and I set up beach chairs in the sand, and simply sat hand in hand as we watch our children’s silhouette’s play by the water. The children were simply happy to shovel sand into a bucket, and then dump it.

I looked at my husband, thanked God for my family, and embraced this time.

All the hard work of packing up a young family of four kids was ALL worth it in that moment.  We knew this was a memory we would remember forever.

The rest of the week was just as satisfying ….. bon fires, walks, games, and a slow pace.  I now realize the importance of a family vacation! Even if it takes a bit of work to get us to that point.

Don’t let a year go by without planning a family get away! And of course another time for you and your spouse to have your own special one on one time!  (this happens for us in November!  YAY)

Here’s just a few reasons this time is Important:

  • It Creates lasting memories
  •  You experience new things together
  • It connects you as a family
  • Provides needed unwind time and rest
  • It gives you the opportunity to teach your kids about saving (for the trip that is)

So take a trip! Go somewhere. Enjoy those treasured moments!


Dad….. A Superhero?

An enduring image from my childhood is a black and white photo of my father sitting on a black vinyl lazy boy with me nestled in his lap in a giggled rhapsody.  Looking at it now, it’s hard to believe that Dad’s beard ever had a colour (white isn’t a colour, right?) and I’m rather impressed that the glasses he wore back then, would be considered stylish today.

Brandon and Dad 1975 B

It just makes me remember…my dad.  The joy of playing catch with him, how right it was when we worked together delivering furniture or the righteous fear he imbedded in me should I ever hit my sister or disrespect my mother.

Allow me to flash forward…when I came home today my baby crawled to me.  He can’t say it but I know and feel that he just wants daddy.  A look, a touch, heck—even a raspberry on one of his chubby legs.  My daughter borrowed lip gloss from her sister in anticipation of tonight’s daddy-daughter date.  My other two kids demanded different forms of daddy time too.  One needed to be wrestled, tickled, and tossed around like the balloon included in a kids meal.  The other, who felt like the flu was trying separate her from her digestive organs, needed her back rubbed and the assurance that it would not.

Moms, I am in awe of all you do.  You do much and ask for so little.  Me?  Once I took all four kids to the local big-box book store.  I bragged about it to anyone who’d listen and demanded that folk ballads be sung to my bravery and skill.  But there is something about “dad”.  It’s relational Brylcream—a little dab’ll  do ya.   Kait usually does EVERYTHING, all day.  Every day.  Yet I’m greeted like a rock star every time I come home from work.

Dads, you know what I’m saying.  Inexplicably, your kids mistake your smart phone and mini van for crime-fighting computer and Bat-mobile.  We’re treated like superheroes.  Moms you’ve noticed too.  And I know, it’s not fair.

Remember, while here on earth, we see through dim glass.  But it seems like God wants us to succeed.  All the favour we get from our kids makes me think that we we’re preconditioned to be drawn to the Father.  Perhaps He knows something about that mutual delight between child and father.

At home it seems like traffic, bills, losing sports teams, the drama of work, and ice storms in the middle of April all try to diminish my ability to experience the delight my kids want to take in their daddy.  I can’t tell how satisfying it was to push that stuff aside and connect with each one of them today.

The same pressures and distractions prevent me from settling into that proverbial easy chair with my Father.  Perhaps there’s hard work for us to share or a healthy, holy fear that I’ve lost sight of.  Either way, there’s one more kid here who feels that his DAD is a superhero and has his heart set on making that connection.

– Brandon