During Noah's week out of school, one of the things we decided HAD to happen was a date night with the kids. Specifically, I wanted to go with Aslan. Since Haddon is younger, Aslan usually spends a lot of one -on- one time with Daddy, and I wanted some for myself. I really wanted to take him to his first movie but there weren't any out. Yet, it worked out so beautifully. We made wonderful memories, which is the point, right? Aslan and I set out for dinner and a fun event.Haddon and daddy set out for an unnamed adventure. First I thought go-carts because he has been asking about them every time we pass them at the Factory... but they were closed. But quality time together cannot be deterred!!!! Not this momma!!! So what else? Well, we were already at The Factory. So Aslan and I snuck into the ice rink and got to sit on the bleachers in the cold and watch hockey practice! It was soooo MUCH fun!!!! It is a little know fact about me, but since I grew up in Alaska, ice rinks are very nostalgic for me. It was TOTALLY free. They said we could come in any time, so I figure Aslan and I have a great new date spot. All kids aren't the same, but if you have a little boy (or girl) who likes watching sports, go for it. We were the only people in the stands, so we could spread out. And Aslan could have sat there all night watching them skate around and hit the puck. Next time we will bundle up. IT was cold!!! So we did the only rational thing. We went and shared some nachos, dinner for two under $5. Then we got Starbucks and went back to the rink for a little while. We had the sweetest time. Those times are so important. I can't wait to see how that quality time continues to change and grow as he gets older. I hope when he is 20, he still wants to go sit at the ice rink with mom, and then share some great conversation over Starbucks.
But most of all, I value these relationship building times because I really want my children to trust me with the gospel. Just like any relationship, we learn each other and he learns how much I care for him or how trustworthy I am during these times. Dr. Aiken once told Noah that he made a deal with his sons early on. " I will go to every baseball game of yours if you will come hear me preach on Sundays." I think the point is that sharing the gospel and raising our children involves a whole lot more than just "telling" them the truth. I want for my children to have such a rich relationship with Noah and I that when we are telling them the treasures of God's word, they are being laid on the foundation of deep trust that has been built over years. I hope that will be valuable in their later years when so many others vie for their trust, also. So with LOTs of prayers and TONs of dependence on God's grace and the work of the Holy Spirit... May date night continue!!
What are some of your favorite ways to spend quality time with the kiddos? Do you notice they are much more receptive to your instruction when you are spending special time with them?