Field Trip to JumpZone on his birthday! How perfect!
Friends are good. Birthdays are fabulous. Birthday parties are great.
Birthdays around our house are a big deal. There are generally several days worth of celebrating that goes on and lots of cake that gets consumed. Our kids have some sort of celebration each year on their birthday. This year Addison had her first ever party that wasn't at our house. She had her new school friends and we had it our church's recreation area. It was perfect. We have had a mixture of big parties before and several smaller ones at the house. However, last years birthday party for Trey just about did me in. It was huge. He had started Kindergarten and with that comes a whole new group of friends. He was friends with pretty much all the kids and wanted them all at his party. He also wanted it on a certain football field where the Razorbacks play and unfortunately he heard from another friend this was possible. Before I knew it, we had rented a football field and planned to feed everyone chicken nuggets and chips. How did this happen? Then the amount of presents he received was unheard of. I left the party feeling a huge pit in my stomach. Why did one child need so many things? How did a 6 year old go about having such a huge party? Little did I know God was already working on my heart and convicting me about getting caught up with my surroundings. He was giving me a glimpse of what was to come if it kept going this way....a child who thought anything could be delivered just because you want it.
Now, don't get me wrong...I am not saying that my kids aren't spoiled rotten because they are. We are so blessed and are thankful that we can do things for them and I truly think that is okay. However, my number one desire for them is to have a grateful and humble heart. This year we told Trey he could have 3 friends spend the night and we would go to Playtime Pizza and play. They had a blast. They ran around and played and then came home and played swords, battle, etc. This morning he was laying in bed with us (because he woke up WAY earlier than the other boys) and I asked him what his favorite part was. He told me playing. I said, at playtime pizza? He said no...playing at the house. I told J.O. later that really put things in perspective for me. This is the first year we haven't had tons of presents running out our ears from a party, the first year I haven't worried myself sick over decorations and party favors and the first year I am not physically exhausted after a birthday celebration. Now don't get me wrong, there will still be parties down the road and places rented and people invited. However, today I also have a burden thinking about the kids who wake up with no one cuddling them in bed and giving them the DS game they have longed for or kids who don't even have someone who really cares it's their birthday. I am hopeful that after our kids spend some time around these children that they too will have this burden. I hope they will see that just because you can doesn't mean you should. I hope in the sometimes protected world of private school that they will be a light and I pray that I will keep sight of this as well. I will be the first to admit that as a mom I get as caught up as the kids and have a desire to keep up with the next. Praying that I will keep a "birthday perspective" for years to come!