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The Arrow Was Launched

Our son, Equine J, married his bride, KL, on July 29th, 2017 at a Brownfield, Maine venue that overlooked the surrounding mountains. The skyline was spectacular. The rustic barn, the pond, the trees and flowers on the property were beautiful.


Equine J is the first of our children to marry, and at times in the past year was so surreal. I mean, I do have a 9 year old, so I’m clearly not old enough to have an adult son, right? (My hair says otherwise.)


As it turns out, being the mother (or father) of the groom can be a rather emotional experience. Much of that emotion is expected to be kept to one’s self in our culture, it seems. I mean, after all, we’re supposed to be happy to have raised an exceptional young man with work ethic and integrity, and that he found the woman God planned for him. We’re expected to be relieved and celebrate that the teen years are over, that apron strings are cut, and celebrating our own freedom from the hardships of parenting. (So what if you happened to love parenting, raising children in their faith, encouraging their life long pursuit at education, and don’t feel that relief that others celebrate?) We are thrilled beyond belief that Equine J found a Christian woman to spend the rest of his life with, to plan a family with, and to go after their goals and dreams together. We are thrilled that they share a vision for service. There is so much about which to be grateful and happy!

It’s not that we’re not happy. It’s that no one told us about the grieving that came with the joy.


Before the wedding was to start, I noted my son sitting alone. The other seven of Equine J’s first family were coveting what little shade there was on the porch, trying to keep our mood light, so as not to risk Mom’s mascara running as the wedding started. I tapped Equine J, and asked him to join us, we intended only to have a family huddle hug, but it turned into a family prayer with me leading, and keeping that lump in my throat from escaping.

During the wedding I listened to my husband weep, as I barely held the tears in my eyes.

I did well all through the wedding, pictures were fun, and visiting with friends and family was fun.


And then, it was time for the Mother-Son dance, to a song I’d never heard. The words took my breath away as I listened to what my son had chosen for our dance. I alternated between laughing at funny memories, and weeping at mistakes, both of which raised the boy to be the man he is.

 

“Mom”

~Garth Brooks

A little baby told God, “Hey, I’m kinda scared
Don’t really know if I want to go down there
From here it looks like a little blue ball
That’s a great big place and I’m so small”

“Why can’t I just stay here with you
Did I make you mad, don’t you want me to?”
God said, “Oh, child, of course I do
But there’s somebody special waiting for you”

“Yeah, and you were ten hours late, don’t you know! ” I laughed in Equine J’s ear.

And well worth the wait, my son. You were a beautiful almost blonde haired, hazel eyed baby boy with big cheeks and a hearty appetite. Back in the day, I loved walking you in our mint green baby stroller and cruising around the town to pay our bills on foot and to story time at the library.

And the truck book I read to you every three hours through your toddlerhood days. I miss that. “Up, up, up goes the cherry picker. They’re repairing the power lines above the street…”

So, hush now baby don’t you cry
‘Cause there’s someone down there waiting
Whose only goal in life
Is makin’ sure you’re always gonna be alright
A loving angel, tender, tough and strong
It’s almost time to go and meet your mom

I would often quote: Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck. Proverbs 1:8-9

Teaching penmanship to my new Kindergartner, homeschooling on our very first day of school, “That’s not how Mrs. Black told me to make my H’s.” Equine J retorted. “I’m not Mrs. Black, dear son. ” I replied. 

You’ll never have a better friend
Or a warmer touch to tuck you in
She’ll kiss your bruises, your bumps and scrapes
And anytime you hurt, her heart’s gonna break

Except I made him walk home from a bike accident that ultimately landed him in the hospital ER with bruised ribs, his teeth piercing through his tongue, a hematoma the size of a dinner plate on his thigh, and a nice concussion.

Well, there is also the day the boy cried because he found out his horse pal Cliff was moving away. On the last day he worked with him, I went out and took photos and saw his relationship with the horse. 

And, there was the day I went with him to bring home a badly behaved, rude horse named Dancer whose attitude matched Equine J’s…

…who ultimately shaped Equine J’s character as he developed a relationship and trained the horse. I saw the work ethic and drive in a boy that had previously seemed irresponsible. These two became quite a team for a couple of years. 

Now, when she’s talking to you
Make sure you listen close
‘Cause she’s gonna teach you everything
You’ll ever need to know
Like how to mind your manners
To love and laugh and dream
And she’ll put you on the path
That’ll bring you back to Me

In second grade, I made Equine J pay for the brand new socks he wore outside without shoes. He kept putting holes in his socks as a result. Then, when he couldn’t tell me how much change he would get for his $8 package of socks, I took his $20 bill for not knowing his math lessons. Graceless parenting at its not so finest.  I felt bad, and deposited the money back into his savings account. 

So, hush now little baby don’t you cry
‘Cause there’s someone down there waiting
Whose only goal in life
Is making sure you’re always gonna be alright
A loving angel, tender, tough and strong
Come on child
It’s time to meet your mom



You are launched, dear son. You are a blessing, a reward, a heritage. Through all our mistakes, failures, and successes, sweat, laughter, and tears, it has been a joy to watch you become the Christian man you are, and I look forward to the joy of seeing the family you and your new bride create. You are both so loved.

With Love,

Mom


 

Ten Tips To Get Ready For Back To School

I’m watching my southern friends send their children back to school. I love the first day of school photos they post. Many of my midwestern friends and east coast friends won’t send their children back to school until the day after Labor Day. Fellow homeschool friends post first day of school photos, often even if they homeschool year round.

Back to school seems almost to be a holiday for some. We all crave routine and schedules, although many families are in so many activities that their school year schedules sound insane!

What can we do to get ready for Back to School? Here are some tips to assist in things going smoothly.

  1. Begin an earlier bedtime routine two weeks before school starts.
  2. Begin an earlier morning routine two weeks before school starts. Start with a checklist of healthy habits and chores that must be completed before our children head to their work areas, Mom’s taxi, or the school bus.
  3. Encourage children (and Mom) to have clothes laid out and backpacks or desk areas prepped the night before in order to start on time.
  4. On Sunday night, choose five outfits for the week, complete with socks and hair accessories labeled Monday through Friday. That way, there is no looking for a missing sock as the school bus pulls up.
  5. Prepare lunches the night before.
  6. Prepare breakfast freezer meals so children are well nourished before the start of school.
  7. Post a weekly schedule on the refrigerator so everyone knows what to expect. Be sure play time or hobbies that are not necessarily sports team or extracurricular class related in order for children to have time to be creative and to relax.
  8. Two weeks ahead, be sure you’ve purchased all required school supplies for the year. New back packs, book bags, packs of #2 pencils, colored pencils, crayons, notebooks, and folders are always a fun way to start a school year fresh! I remember my Trapper Keeper fondly, as well as covering all my textbooks with paper bag book covers! 
  9.  If you have girls, practice easy hair styles for quick styling, and for keeping hair out of their eyes, and away from head lice! Easy braids, pony tails, half ups, quick buns that aren’t too tight are great options. Consider using flexi clips rather than strangling hair and promoting breakage by elastics, barrettes, claws, or hairbands that dig behind the ears. Hurting during school is such a distraction from learning! Aim for comfort. 
  10. All Moms take a few minutes, pray, breathe, enjoy that hot cup of coffee, tea, hot cocoa, and breathe again. You’ve got this. Enjoy your children, enjoy the process, enjoy watching your children grow. You are blessed. They are blessed to have a mom getting them ready for another best year. Pray for your children. All too soon, they are graduated and married and starting lives of their own. Don’t wish it away. I get that it’s hard. We’ve had hard. Hard means pray more, breathe more, have faith in your children more and express that to them, even when they mess up. Did I mention pray? Breathe?
    Take a few minutes on that first day of school just for you.

    You’ve got this.

    The following is how I know this:

Have a great school year!

Blessings, and with love in Christ,

Deb

 

 

 

 

 

Ten Homeschool Benefits For Youth Using A Family Business

A few weeks ago, the LoveLeavingLegacy crew was honored to be the Lilla Rose vendors for the INCH homeschool conference in Lansing, MI. We got to model what it could look like for families to have a business with low start up costs, and to enable parents to teach entrepreneurship and business skills through a real life family internship at their finger tips, all while reaching family financial goals.

Not all our business working children were able to make the conference. We had some illness the same weekend.

We had a great time, and talked to many lovely families.


Have you ever considered a family based business to teach your children these skills?

What Could Your Youth Learn By Your Family Having A Business?

  • Bookkeeping
  • Marketing And Social Media
  • Graphics and Video Making
  • Product Demonstration
  • Communication
  • Salesmanship
  • Ethics in Business
  • Office Work
  • Inventory Purchasing
  • Money Management

I’m sure there is so much more.


Maybe you are a woman wanting a second job, a Mom needing a way to earn some extra money for the family while getting a night out. What would be YOUR why? Just because my Why is to get to work with my children doesn’t mean that is yours. My Why won’t be my Why forever either.

Our children grow up and start their own lives. But, I have a vision for being able to travel with my husband, care for my parents, travel to see our grandchildren, relieve some burden on my husband, and maybe to do missions. I’d love a job that can travel with us, and building this business now prepares us for a future like that!


So what could you do with a small business? How would it prepare you for your future if it’s not because of homeschooling? And what could you learn with your children if it’s for homeschooling today?

Here is a list of other benefits to a Lilla Rose business:

  • Community and Relationships
  • Extra Income Potential
  • Love the Products
  • Leadership Opportunities
  • Fundraising Potential
  • It’s also Family Owned With Family Emphasis


As my children grow, I realize there is a season for everything. I’m still in a planting season with my children, but I’m also in a harvest season. Lilla Rose has been a huge benefit to us in both planting, nurturing, and harvesting. We are still building through homeschooling and a Lilla Rose business.


Where are you in your seasons?


If you see yourself wanting to train up a generation of entrepreneurs through a low cost start up business, we should talk. If you see yourself needing a hair care system business because you both love the products, need the community, need part time or full time income, or would love a fundraising vehicle, I would love to talk.

Blessings,

Deb

Enjoy this tribute to our Stars and Stripes in Lilla Rose Style with newly released patriotic products, plus the return of former July Flexis of the Month and other limited release products. Also note that all patriotic clips are 10% off, and other select clips are 20-30% off as well, now through Sunday night, 11:59 PM PST. Note also that with a $70 retail order, you can choose an extra small FREE from this selection of flexi clips. Which would you choose?

Credits to United States National Anthem, by Francis Scott Key. Video made with Animoto.