learning

Montessori School, Missing Teeth and a New Car Seat

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I’m not really sure how it happened. One day Claire was born and now she’s on the verge of turning 5 years old. Time didn’t zoom by, it just happened and here we are.

The last few months have been pretty amazing. Claire started at a Catholic Montessori school where she is learning at a rapid pace. There’s a good chance she will be smarter than me by next week. We chose to send her there instead of the parochial school attached to the parish because we are big fans of the Montessori model as well as the small student to teacher ratio (she is one of three). Claire has her momma’s brain and is learning so much. At some point Claire and I went from having one word conversations to now going back and forth regarding what animals are vertebrates. Again, time didn’t zoom by and bring us to this place. It just happened and here we are.

Last week Claire came home and said she had a loose tooth. I thought to myself, “umm…did you get into a fist fight? You’re too young to be loosing your teeth.” Claire’s first tooth has come out and I am once again standing in awe at the reality that this little girl isn’t so little anymore. There is sadness in some ways. My first born whom I held and took naps with is now this tall, spunky kid who can pour her own milk, and make herself a bowl of cereal for breakfast. Now, don’t get me wrong I like not having to make breakfast, but dang…

The sadness I am experiencing is a bittersweet kind of thing. Yes, my little girl isn’t so little, and that piece is fading away. However, this new little girl is bringing into life all kinds of beautiful experiences and memories that I cant help falling in love with her all over again. It is quite the thing to have your child grow up.

Cecilia, our second daughter is almost 10 months old. Our experience with Cecilia has been very different. We got all the new baby stuff down from our first born, and we are enjoying Cecilia more than we did Claire. I guess that when we had our first-born there was so much newness to the experience that we were hyper vigilant about everything. Now, with Cecilia, we are calmer and able to experience her with that knowledge we got from our time with Claire. However, I am in awe that 10 months have gone by. Cecilia is crawling and interacting with her amazing little personality. It is definitely awesome.

Again, time didn’t zoom by, it just happened and here we are.

In between all of the above, and switching out car seats for both kids (another wow moment) I am glad that I can pause and be grateful for all the experiences I have with these kids. My wife and I try our best to make sure we savor the moments we have with them. Time isn’t zooming by for us because we are trying as best as we can to live in the moment with these kids. Yet, no matter how intentional we are about our time with the girls we still have these moments where we recognize that they are older, taller, smarter, etc. It just happens and we look at ourselves wondering how?

But here we are. And we love every moment of it.

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Categories: being thankful, dads, fatherhood, fathers, growing up, learning, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Prway

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My daughter never seizes to amaze me.

As a father I recognize that my duty is to help my daughter grow emotionally, spiritually, intellectually, socially and physically. I, as well as my wife, spend many of our hours in the day helping our daughter to grow and learn. Recently Claire learned how to pray. As Catholic Christians, all of our prayers begin with the sign of the cross. It is a simple, yet powerful gesture that sums up the faith and the power of the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Claire kind of sort of can do it. Usually she lifts her hand towards her forehead and then brings it down towards her chin in a circular motion. Wax on, wax off sort of thing. We’re working on it.

Our prayer time with Claire is short. After Claire attempts the sign of the cross she places her palms together to pray. This she can do really well. Most of her prayer time is before meals and before going to bed. We keep it short and sweet because, well… she’s not even two yet. Claire has come to recognize that before every meal we must give thanks and pray. She has become sort of the prayer police at home.

It isn’t unusual for my wife and I to find ourselves pulled a million different directions. Between my wife’s night shift work, lack of sleep, and part time Masters Degree studies and my Youth Ministry schedule that can be…unpredictable at best; we find our selves on the go all the time and exhausted. It is challenging to make prayer a priority every morning. We do it, but it is challenging.

A few days ago I found myself rushing to get to a night meeting at church. I had cooked our meal and was all “go, go, go”. I put the plate of food on the table and immediately began to eat. I was interrupted by my daughter’s words: “prway!” It took a second to register. “Prway? Yes. I need to pray. Give thanks.” I put the fork down and my wife, daughter and I prayed together.

It is so easy to get caught up in the business of life. It is so easy to rush to that important thing. What we do is important and necessary, or else we wouldn’t do it. Yet, we must slow down to give thanks. To “prway”, as a wise young child is teaching me.

As we enter into these next few weeks of family interactions, feasts, laughter, hurrying and last minute shopping excursions let us not forget to give thanks. To pause and “prway”. For life is a gift that we have for a short time and praying is a necessary way of giving thanks to God for it. My daughter teaches me this every time a plate touches our table.

“Daddy prway!”

Categories: children, daughters, fatherhood, God, learning, prayer, teaching, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

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