10+ ways to build a strong family foundation

We sat down at the parent-teacher conference and expected to hear about our child’s progress since the last meeting. We are used to hearing that our child is helpful and kind, a good student, and a joy in class. What we didn’t expect to hear was how much the teacher loves hearing about all the family things we do. The teacher raved about our child explaining birthday traditions, visits from extended family, and chore systems.

What? That’s what it’s impressive about our family?

The teacher explained that many students these days don’t have such strong connections with their families. Everyone is so busy with their own schedules that time as a family unit gets ignored. And if they do get time together? It’s not really all that together. They exist in the same physical space but the connection aspect is missing.

Even a simple idea like choosing a birthday meal was foreign to some kids. These traditions that our family took for granted as normal life were creating bonds between us that will keep our relationships strong.

Now don’t think we have it all together. Heck, there are days I wonder if anyone likes anyone in this house! But then I step back and see one kid pat another on the back for doing a good job, or offer to help someone with a difficult task, and I realize that maybe we aren’t screwing everything up. My prayer is that the foundations we are laying down now with these intentional acts will continue to build on one another so our family can stick together in any storm that may come our way.

Four Life Lessons from My Raspberry Patch

Each summer I have anticipated a larger return, only to wonder why my plants weren’t producing. Oh sure, we’d get a cup or two total, but with the amount of plants we had I thought for sure we should be getting more! I mean, a typical picking produced enough for the kids and I to each get a couple berries – not exactly what we were hoping for!

Only this summer, four years after moving in, did the lesson I didn’t know I needed sink in. And not just about raspberries, but about everything.