Monday, October 3, 2011


Hubby and I have asked ourselves this many times over the years.

You buy an awesome Christmas present,
the kid plays with the box.

You order an awesome birthday present,
the kid plays with the bubble wrap.

You splurge on cool outside toys,
they play with
Sticks and Rocks and Mud.
When they get tired of sticks and rocks and mud,
they entertain themselves.

However, if we wrapped up
Sticks and Rocks and Mud
in rolls of bubble wrap and
taped it up in a big box
to give a kid for  Christmas or a birthday,
they wouldn't be happy.
They would want a cool toy.

Still, for two and a half decades of parenting,
hubby and I have asked ourselves,

Case in point.

We go to a cool beach on the Puget Sound for a family picnic.
I pack a large basket full of very exciting outdoor toys for the big kids.
They get ignored.

Instead, the kids creatively make up their own fun.

Bethany spearheads the "Balancing Act" game.
In case you didn't know, a log is an overgrown stick.

Grace attempts balancing on an extra long log.
Is it cheating if you use a stick to balance on a log?

Hey, Moms, notice they don't outgrow the
"Adopt A Stick" game?

Beka takes on the challenge.

Jon joined the game, but spent most of his time
leaping instead of balancing.

Grace changes the game to
"See Who Can Find the Best Marshmallow Roasting Stick."

Can't  ya' hear her triumphant cry,
"I Win, Oh, Yea!"
to the tune of
"Squid Launcher, Oh Yea!"

Jon participated in a boy's favorite pastime,

"Throwing Rocks."

Beka played,
"Let's See how Long I can Walk in 58degree Water."
Not very long.

She loved digging her toes in the mud along the edges.

See what I mean?
Sticks and Rocks and Mud
keep them happy.

While they waded, balanced and threw,
Daddy rested.

After roasting dinner, they tired of
Sticks and Rocks and Mud

so they invented a new game.

"Leap Over Your Sister In a Single Bound."

Little Sister joined the game,
but didn't quite master the leap OVER part.

Big Sister added a new dimension to the game.
It became
 "Leap Over Your Sister In a Single Bound While Catching the Aerobie."

Yea, they finally touched a toy.

Then they started playing with the picnic tables.

"Let's See If We Can Jump From Table to Table
Without Touching the Ground."

Made it!

Can't you just hear them double-dog daring each other?

While they jumped over, around, into,  and on top of things,
Daddy rested.

So back to that original question,

Because I, that's me, wave to the shadow,
like buying them toys.

I like to give my children good things.
As we begin the annual countdown to Christmas,
yea, don't panic, but it's three months away,
I plan on buying toys.

I will wrap them with bubble wrap and place them in boxes.
The kids will play with the bubble wrap and boxes,
but I will be happy I bought them toys.

Because I like toys.
I like giving good things.
Even if they don't like a present I pick out,
I keep buying them presents.
Even if they don't use a present I pick out,
I keep buying them presents.
Even if they don't keep a present I pick out,
I keep buying them presents.

You're like that, too?
Do ya' know who we take after?
Our Father.

Matthew 7:11
If you then, being evil,
know how to give good gifts to your children,
how much more will your Father who is in heaven
 give good things to those who ask Him!

Yea, that's where I get my example.

We may be like Him in the desire to give good things,
but our jesting desire to wrap up
Sticks and Rocks and Mud
doesn't come from Him.

The verse just prior tells us

 Matthew 7:9
Or what man is there among you who,
if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?

Even if we're content to play with life's
Sticks and Rocks and Mud,
He's still determined to give us good things.

Isn't He an amazing Heavenly Father?


  1. That is the most epic marshmallow roasting stick in history!

  2. That is so true...why do we buy toys? Loved reading about your great family time and the creative ways your bunch 'played'. Thanks for sharing!

  3. That touched a chord in my heart!


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