One of the Best Christmas Presents for Preschoolers

A laminator… no seriously!

Our kids play with their letters puzzles, alphabet, and states more than most of their other toys. I can store the printables in very little space, make more for pennies, and take them on the go.  learning Julia laminator

There are so many fun things to print from pinterest some of my favorites are Mr. Printables and Teachers Pay Teachers

Every once in a while I buy something to go with our printables (besides a dry erase marker) these include:
chocolate chips– if they can name the State, letter, shape, etc. I put it on, they get to eat it:) –magnetic letters– we put the printable on a cookie sheet and match
velcro– to get the puzzles to stick for puzzles on the go. letters

We also love finding YouTube videos that go with them.

I’m an Amazon Prime lover because I don’t have to load three kids in the car and then listen to them whine while I shop;) so this is the one I got and I love it so far.

oh and little brothers can’t eat them:)

ElliotCheck out my pinterest boards for more printable ideas.

Do you have any printables you love? Please share in the comments!

So what informs our idea of Modesty?


so what informs our modesty

I can see my 16 year old self rolling her eyes.
I picture the mother in her denim jumper, the Muslim girl at the pool, and the scantly dressed “nurse” on Halloween.

One has her nose in the air, the other is told the sight of her skin is an excuse for a boy to abuse her, and the other wants to feel beautiful and wanted.

Modesty is misrepresented.

I posted this article this week with this question:”What do you think of the ‘Christian modesty rules’? Should we give our daughters rules? Should we teach them the theology behind modesty and let them decide?”

Immodest Proposals: The Rules

I got a lot of responses to the question and I got a lot of laughs from her post. As Christians I think we need to address both the rules that are becoming hilarious and the way we are responding to the lists. Thank you to all of those who responded and added to this difficult conversation.

When I was in Junior High and High School the question was: “As Christian teen girls how should we dress?” unfortunately that skips over so much of discussion that should come first and it was usually followed by a list of dos and don’ts. Much of our conversation was about drawing lines instead of searching our hearts.

How did God create Adam and Eve?
Naked and unashamed. (Gen 1:26-28; 2:725)

Why can’t we still be naked?
When Adam and Eve sinned they became aware of their nakedness and hid. GOD CLOTHED THEM in the skin of an animal that he killed to cover their nakedness as a picture of the blood of His Son that he would send into the world so that we could be forgiven and CLOTHED with Righteousness. Therefore our clothes are a constant reminder of our sin, Christ’s blood, and our NEED to be CLOTHED in HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS so that we can stand in the presence of a Holy God. (Gen 3:21; Is 61:10; Zech 3:4)

How should we as Christian women dress?
To the Glory of God. (1 Cor 10:31, Westminster Catechism Question 1)

You are probably thinking, “Wow, that’s as clear as mud.”
And you are right!!! There aren’t lists of what is modest and what is not in the Bible. The Immodest Proposals list is just a comic way of showing how culture informs our views of what is modest and what is not. In fact in Uganda their are some places it is more “acceptable” for a woman to be topless then to show her knees in a short skirt.

What does it look like to dress to the glory of God? Well we know that the Holy Spirit dwells within us as Christians and we are also told we are ambassadors for Christ. We represent Him all the time. Growing up I went to many high school athletic events and as an ambassador for NC, it was inappropriate to wear green (the color of the cross-town rival). Just last week I had a green vest on and my mom told me to change before the game. In the same way we represent Christ in what we wear.

My 3 year old is all about asking “why” and I am trying to teach him that it is great to ask “why” but he needs to obey even if he doesn’t understand. The same goes with rules of how to dress. I think we should ask “why” and maybe the rules will change, but until then it is glorifying to God to obey the people God has put in authority. I will admit that I have not always succeeded at this, so if I ever disobeyed your rules, I’m sorry!

1 Timothy 2:9 is one of the few verses that speaks to how we dress. Timothy says that women should dress respectable and with self-control. So when we get dressed we should let our theology inform our dress.

To the woman with her nose in the air:
You were dead in your trespasses and sins, just as dead as that other girl, and you needed to be clothed in the righteousness of Christ. Your modesty needs to be a result of that not a good thing you do to earn favor with God. (Titus 3-5-7)
Just to be clear a woman with rules is not the same as a legalistic woman.

*and to the daughter of that woman:
standing naked in front of your husband is not a bad thing. God created us naked in Eden and has redeemed nakedness in marriage. Marriage after all is a picture of Christ and the Church and before God we stand with NO SHAME.

To the woman who is told that a man has the right to rape her if she doesn’t cover up:
When Eve held the apple out to Adam and he took and ate. HE WAS RESPONSIBLE (Gen 3:12) and his answer that the woman gave it to him did not hold water. I’m not saying that it isn’t important to love our brother by dressing modestly. It is important. Love for others is definitely glorifying to God, but men are always responsible for their own sin.

To the girl who is dressing to gain approval:
It doesn’t matter if you are wearing a denim jumper for your parents approval or a bikini to gain the approval of your friends and boy friend. You are clothing your self with fig leaves in hiding rather than coming to Jesus who will clothe you with the Righteousness of Christ because of His blood so that you can stand with approval in the presence of God. (Eph2:8-9) It is a heart issue: are we desiring the approval of people or desiring to please God. If we so deeply desire to please people, then we should check our heart because we are thinking, “God is not enough.”

There is an immodesty epidemic because we have a sin epidemic. We first need the hearts of women. Women need to know Jesus Christ and be filled with the Holy Spirit.

*parents should have rules/ guidelines for their children because as parents we are to train and guide our children. Especially for young children it is most loving to give specific “rules” to follow instead of being left wandering to figure it out on their own. (Prov 22:6)
I love a quote that my friend Jess shared with me from Stacie Johnson, “Having rules to follow is much easier than having to think about the reasons behind the rules.” We need to have rules because we do not think great thoughts about God as often as we should, when we start consistently thinking about God the rules will not matter because everything we do will be to bring Him glory.

I’m sure there is plenty I have missed, this is a huge topic and a long discussion. What would you add about thinking rightly about modesty?

The First Month


1 monthHow is it that the last month of pregnancy feels like six months and the first month of baby’s life goes by in a flash?

1monthMicah and Julia are captivated with our little man! Julia is still telling me that she is “so excited” that he is out of my belly:) Her vocabulary brings us daily giggles. I think she is stepping up her comedy to fight the middle child syndrome. IMG_0097This month has been crazy with adjusting to “staying awake a lot” as Matt fondly calls it, Julia and Micah having the stomach flu, getting snowed in, and getting Matt ready to fly to Uganda on Monday.

It has been wonderful to have so much help, and I was ready for the transition from 2 to 3 to rock our world. There are more “mom help”s, more diapers, more mess and less quiet, but in some ways it has been easier than the transition from 1 to 2. Micah and Julia can play together while Elliot is nursing, I have fully embraced the beauty of Netflix, Micah has been a huge help since he is older, and as I am writing this I realized our transition from 1 to 2 was in Uganda and the conveniences of America have made more of a difference than I thought. I love mac-n-cheese and chicken nuggets that are ready in 1-1 1/2 minutes.

playdohWe have played with Playdoh A LOT! And stayed in our jammies on these cold winter days. We have survived and that was my goal for this first month!

JamberryMy biggest advice for new moms… do your nails! I have my super cute new bangs pinned back, haven’t brushed my hair, have no make-up on, most of my clothes don’t fit right, but as I watch myself change the 15th diaper of the day or get the 17th sippycup I fully enjoy the little bit of fun and beauty and I for a second feel like I have it together:)

Now I know why half of my mom friends are selling Jamberry!

Happy weekend!


Flying in Your Third Trimester (internationally and with toddlers)

Traveling in the thrid trimester

Just don’t… Is that what you are thinking? Well we live in Uganda and we wanted to come home to have this baby.

Booking Flights
– Ask around about kid friendly airlines. We like United, British Airways, and have heard great things about Emirates. We haven’t liked Brussels with little kids. (After this last flight I would rather pay more for a flight on British Airways than pay for an upgrade to economy plus… the flight attendants really do make a difference on a long flight!)
-Choose the most direct flights with the least amount of total travel time. This was actually the cheapest option for us this time, but I would have paid extra to cut out two layovers, hours of layover time, and 8+ hours of total travel.
-Check on their rules for flying while pregnant. Airlines all differ on how late they will let you fly. Usually after 28 weeks you will need a doctors note. (They gave us a hard time at the Entebbe airport because my note said “fit to travel” not “fit to fly”)

Before you leave
Get in touch with the airline!
-We have one lap child so we can sit in the bulk head on international flights, but I had to request it. -They have children’s meals that will come out first so you can feed the kids before you eat and don’t have to deal with all of the trays at once. You also have to request a child’s meal! The lap child won’t get a meal.
– Get a note from a doctor
– Sign up for reward miles

*Talk up going on an airplane to your kids! Watch an airplane movie. Look for airplanes in the sky. (Micah got to sit in the cockpit of a small plane at MAF the day we left and he could hardly contain his excitement!)
* If you are flying internationally call your credit card company and let them know.

Packing for mama
– Don’t pack too much carry on luggage! I would rather leave the book that I probably won’t read anyway so that I don’t have to deal with it.

-Chapstick and lotion for the dry airplane air

-extra pair of clothes

Packing for toddlers
– Suckers (DumDums) for take off and landing.. and fussing… and boredom
– Other snacks
– Sippy cups- just have the flight attendant pour in them
– Kid Headphones
– Blanket or other important sleeping things
– Small toys (get something new)
– stickers, color wonder, or other easy things to do on a wobbly tray
– Ipad, Iphone, or other electronic device- get a new game, movie, or puzzle
– Melatonin, Benadryl, Tylenol or other medicine you might need.
– Extra clothes- seriously don’t forget this!
-Socks- some airport playgrounds require them

-Again, try not to over pack!

Leave at home or check
-Unless you have a direct flight, but even then, leave the stroller. Baby carriers like Boba/Ergo make it much easier to get around.
-Big toys
-Excess- don’t pack too much! Our kids are so interested in movies, people, and the airplane that they hardly play with toys or other activities.

Getting dressed
– Support hose
– Comfy but easy to remove shoes
– Comfy bra
– Layers
– Belly Band

– Our flights leave at night or first thing in the morning so we always start off in PJs
– Pull ups as long as they will let you- turbulence, take off and landing, and lines, make quick bathroom trips difficult
– They shouldn’t have to take their shoes off so put them in shoes that won’t fall off and get lost

The day of

*Drink tons of water! – I didn’t have nightmares that I would go into labor onboard… I had them that I couldn’t breathe because it was SO dry!

Make sure you have:
– Doctors note
– Passports
– Birth certificate for toddlers if you don’t have a passport (for flying within the U.S.)
– Left any pocket knives or other items you can’t take on a plane out of your bags (Dads!)

Put all electronics in the same bag
Put all liquids in one bag and in a zip lock bag
You can bring baby food, milk, water for formula, and juice for toddlers at most airports but put them all in the same place

Getting to your gate
–  Make sure you leave enough time for mama and toddlers. It is nice to let them run around for a few minutes before the flight and everyone will need to go to the bathroom and who knows how long security will take.
– Don’t worry if your kids are loud in the security line. It can get you moved to the front if they see you have kids! It worked again this time:)
– Smile- I might have forgotten this one until we were actually on the plane…
– Have dad- Put all of the electronics in separate containers, and take care of the carry-ons if possible
– Have mom- push the kids through the crazy line with gloved people staring at them.
– Take a deep breath when you get through security!!! Seriously sit there for a minute don’t run to your gate unless you are late. Go to the bathroom.

Getting off the ground
– If you have a lap child, ask for a baby cot right away if you want one. They don’t usually have enough on board.
– Make friends with a flight attendant.
– Get a sucker (or two) and something to play with out for the kids during take off.
– Walk around at least every hour and drink plenty of water and skip the soda. (I have heard that airplanes are more dry than the desert… thus the nightmares)
– If your kids cry, it is probably bothering you more than the other people on the plane. On our last flight our stewardess said to me, “That was yours crying a while ago wasn’t it? I’m so proud of you for not freaking out. People understand that babies cry it just makes it worse when parents stress out.”
– Don’t be afraid to ask if you need anything.
– Get your stuff together and get off the plane as quickly as possible

What if you go into labor on board?
Your child could get free travel for life! 
Your flight might land sooner than expected unless you are over unsafe airspace or the ocean.
Very few babies are born on board don’t worry

Congratulations you did it!!!

Take a look at the rest of the Checklist!

These are some of or tips, if you are flying with babies, toddlers, or in any trimester of pregnancy and have any questions email me!

What are your favorite traveling tips?

When Thankfulness is a Struggle

WhenThankfulness is a StruggleThe power went out this morning just as we were waking up for the day. “Click,” I heard the fan shut off followed by Julia’s little voice, still sounding half asleep, “Pow’s out.”

This is a regular occurrence and frustration of living in Uganda. Julia will wake up like clock work when her fan goes off. Lately it has been off most of the day when I wish I could entertain the kids with a movie and do a load of laundry. Consistent power is not something I would put on my “November Thanksgiving List”.

My cup of coffee was still hot when the power came back followed by cheers from the kids. They both clap, squeal, and sometimes dance when it returns.

“Pow’s on! Pwaise da Lord!” It is quite comical when I think of some of the words and phrases my 1 and 2 year old use on a regular basis.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

I have had this verse written in my house for months because I really struggle with it! There are lots of circumstances I am not thankful for. When I am honest, l see that I want the gifts of God more than I want God Himself. I love comfort and I can give thanks for comfort, but “all circumstances” are not comfortable.

I am so thankful that my children give thanks for the power coming back. Right now I am frustrated with the circumstances of poor power, but those frustrations will pass with time. It is ok, even good, to struggle with giving thanks for circumstances. The power is small thing in comparison to some of life’s trials. I do not have to be giddy with cheer for it to be true thankfulness.

I don’t think I will ever forget my children jumping up and down giving thanks for the power coming back. It is a memory I will treasure forever and for that I am Thankful!

Do you feel like you can struggle through thankfulness especially this time of year when life is busy and everyone’s Facebook and wall decor is telling you to give thanks?


Checklist to Enjoy Your Third Trimester of Pregnancy

checklist to enjoy your third trimester

We are getting so excited to meet our little boy! With Micah I was so excited to do everything baby and started before my baby bump was even visible. With Julia we were moving to a new country so I bought everything before the third trimester but had no idea what to expect, honestly, until I was in labor.
I have learned so much with each pregnancy, birth, and baby so I thought I’d do a series on the home stretch of pregnancy.

I remember feeling sad just days after Micah was born because he was no longer in my belly. Don’t get me wrong, I was thrilled to hold him in my arms but I felt like I wished away a lot of my pregnancy. It was a great lesson for me to enjoy the moments as they come which can be very difficult when you can’t sleep and it hurts to bend over. I hope I can offer some encouragement (and good reminders for myself) in enjoying the last trimester of pregnancy.

checklist to enjoy your third trimester

Checklist to enjoy your third trimester:
– Pray for baby
– Pick baby name(s)
– Are you taking a trip? make sure you are as safe and comfortable as possible
– Eat well, even if you don’t feel like it
– Get some exercise
Buy baby stuff
– Buy your older children something new to keep them entertained while you rest. *we just gave our kids a train set as an early Christmas present. It is my ticket to resting on the couch or getting dinner made!
– Confront your birthing fears
– Start preparing older siblings-7 reasons I let my son play with dolls
– Read up on taking care of baby- there is always new stuff and it is amazing how fast you forget
– Think about what kind of parent you want to be don’t be afraid to change your “parenting style”
– Learn about common procedures for both you and baby in the hospital
– Research the hospital, take a class, or take a tour of the Labor and Delivery Unit
– Talk and pray with your spouse about the big decisions you get to make
– Make a birth plan
– Register at the hospital (In Uganda put down a payment)
– Start a project to keep you occupied (for instance a blog series on the third trimester of pregnancy!)
– Set up a place for baby to sleep or an entire nursery
– Pack a hospital bag
– Get a pedicure with a friend
-Take pregnancy photos
– Meet up with your Doula
– Know how or install the car seat
– Stock up on things you will need after baby is born to avoid the stores for a while with a newborn
– Go on a babymoon!
– Get your body ready for delivery with stretches, rest, and strengthening exercises
– Make a plan for when Labor starts: who will stay with older kids, when will you go to the hospital, who do you want with you…
– Go on a date with your older kids

One of my favorite things I have picked for each of our children was a lullaby. It has been almost, if not more, fun than picking their names. It is a song I sing to them as I put them to sleep and they start associating the song with sleepy eyes. There were a few months with Julia that I barely made it through the first verse and she would be out! We haven’t decided for sure on a name for this baby but I have his lullaby- Great is Thy Faithfulness.

Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Thomas Chisholm – 1925

Great Is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father!
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Though changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

Great Is Thy faithfulness,
Great Is Thy faithfulness,
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy Faithfulness, Lord unto me!

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above,
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.


Pardon for Sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!


What are some other things you have done to enjoy the last weeks before meeting your little one? I’d love to add to the list!

President Obama- 12 Reasons This Daughter Values the Choice Her Mom Made To Stay Home.


This Friday President Obama was making a case for women’s equality in the workplace and better child care when he said this:

“Sometimes, someone, usually mom, leaves the workplace to stay home with the kids, which then leaves her earning a lower wage for the rest of her life as a result. That’s not a choice we want Americans to make.”

12 reasons this daughter values the choice her mom made to stay home

President Obama, being a stay at home mom IS a valuable choice and here is why:

1. I got homemade cookies with my homework help from my college educated mother.
2. I sat on the counter as a toddler and my teacher patiently taught me the answers to all of life’s most important “why” questions.
3. I always knew the person taking care of me not only cared about my education, but loved me and would do anything for me.
4. I not only got a good education, but a Biblical worldview, and a good work ethic.
5. My dad traveled with work but we never worried who we would stay with.
6. I had my biggest fan at almost every sporting event even though some were 8 hours away.
7. I didn’t spend hours in the car every week driving to childcare instead I spent those hours outside playing.
8. Rules stayed the same year after year and were mostly enforced- by the same person. That taught me so much about life and authority.
9. I learned that children are a blessing and I saw my mom’s contribution to society as extremely important.
10. Time with my mom was better than anything my parents could have bought with a second income.
11. My mom was not only there when I was sick, but also when I skinned my knee, or just needed to cry.
12. I have a college education just like my mom, but I value staying home with my children because I loved having a mom who stayed home with me. She taught me that it is a great choice to make!

I understand it isn’t a choice all women want to make, but it is terrifying to have a leader that doesn’t value it as a good choice to make. If we have made making the most money possible in life a higher priority than being with our children we are in a very scary place. I hope you correct your statement and I hope that you value your own children more than that statement suggests.

What do I Worship? – The True Themometer of the Heart


What are you (as they say in Uganda) fearing today?

Ebola or terrorists- (I hear these were some of the biggest Halloween costume ideas this year)
Sicknesses that your kids have
An issue in your marriage
What is next for your family
That you are ruining your children

It is so easy for my first response to be an emotional response of fear, worry, or anger instead of pausing to remember what God’s word says.

My kids have had some virus or something on top of a stomach bug. The thermometer read over 101 many times this week as I pulled it out of a squirming child’s mouth, and I lost count of how many times they have thrown up.

We get emotional about things we care about like our children, husbands, homes, and future. I have had one of those weeks where my emotions could have easily gotten the best of me, but in the middle of my week I was trying to read the Bible while sitting on the bed playing with Micah and Julia. I was reading  when Julia stepped on my Bible and I grabbed her hand to help her off without ripping any pages, and purely as a reaction, started singing, “Standing standing standing on the promises of God.”
again she cheered

When I don’t know and believe the promises of God, my emotions lead me far astray. It is only when I put my emotions in their place that I can see clearly, know the truth, and let my emotions be a true blessing. Emotions are a blessing from God but our heart is deceitful and desperately wicked.

“Our emotions reflect what we worship. They reveal what has captured our hearts. God gave us emotions as he made us in his image; they are intended to help us live in communion with him. They are a key indicator of whether we are living in joyful covenantal communion with him or in the service of something else.” 
– Paul David Tripp

what do you worship?

If we allow our heart to lead our emotions we will often “feel” wrongly because we are worshiping the wrong thing. If we allow God’s truth to lead our emotions it may take more work and it may not come easily right away but it will always be better.

Yes Lord! Let us be as enthusiastic and persistent about letting our feelings follow your truths as Julia dancing on the bed, oblivious to the lesson she had just taught me. When the temperature of our heart shows us that we value anything above God, let us count it a blessing that He has revealed it to us and wants the ultimate place of worship in our lives.

Standing on the promises of Christ my King,
Through eternal ages let His praises ring,
Glory in the highest, I will shout and sing,
Standing on the promises of God.

Standing, standing,
Standing on the promises of God my Savior;
Standing, standing,
I’m standing on the promises of God.

Standing on the promises that cannot fail,
When the howling storms of doubt and fear assail,
By the living Word of God I shall prevail,
Standing on the promises of God.


Standing on the promises I now can see
Perfect, present cleansing in the blood for me;
Standing in the liberty where Christ makes free,
Standing on the promises of God.


Standing on the promises of Christ the Lord,
Bound to Him eternally by love’s strong cord,
Overcoming daily with the Spirit’s sword,
Standing on the promises of God.


Standing on the promises I cannot fall,
Listening every moment to the Spirit’s call
Resting in my Savior as my all in all,
Standing on the promises of God.

-Words by John Sweney and Kelso Carter

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Fall Fun Ideas For Toddlers


Micah and I made a chain to count down days until we come home! We put fun fall activities on them to give us some fun things to look forward to as we wait for the days to pass. We thought we would share some of the fun for you to enjoy too!

Fall fun idea

-Play with play dough and make fall shapes
-Read Where is Babies Pumpkin and/or play hide and seek with a pumpkin
-Paint a Pumpkin
-Make caramel and eat it with apples

Fall Fun Ideas







-Read Froggy’s Halloween and/or play dress up
-Draw a thankful tree and add something to it each day in November
-Make a leaf crown

Fall Fun Ideas





-Make Sugar cookies
-Frost Sugar cookies
-Practice colors with leaves

Fall colors






Make Lego stamped corn


lego corn

– Go on a nature walk and collect leaves
– Make a leafy jack-o-lantern

Fall Fun Ideas







– Go on a turkey hunt
– Count leaves
– Read the story of the pilgrims
– Sensory play in popcorn and beans
-Make hand print turkeys

And can you believe it has been 6 weeks since the last 6 week goals!
How did you do?

I met most of mine but the quilt is not coming very quickly and I have a few chapters left in 2 Chronicles. I “finished” memorizing Ephesians this month although I have been going back to review and definitely slacked on that in the first few months I was pregnant. I read this week that David Platt had the entire New Testament memorized by the time he was 36! Wow what a great thing to work towards. I would have to memorize 2 chapters every 6 weeks to finish when I’m 36.

Here are my goals for the next 6 weeks: 4 in Uganda and 2 in Wyoming:)
Memorize– John 1 (&2)
Study– start Ephesians with Lexi using the “P method”
*If you are looking for a great book on studying the Bible I would highly recommend Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin
ReadOrdinary by Michael Horton and You and Me Forever by Francis Chan
Christmas– Order Christmas Cards and make a Christmas list of presents to buy
Kids– Fall Fun Ideas, make an advent list and start with What God Wants for Christmas on Dec 1

What are you planning for the next 6 weeks? Any fun fall ideas?

7 Reasons I Let My Son Play With Dolls


The conversation began when Micah was just over one year old and his baby sister was growing in my belly. He loved to kiss my belly and talk about his baby and he started finding the baby doll at every little girl’s house we visited. I very specifically remember Matt asking me one day,”Should we let our son play with dolls?”
Some parents believe they should offer gender neutrality to their children and let them choose, but The Word of God, the standard for truth, says,”So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”
We weren’t questioning if we should let him choose which gender he feels like. We were questioning if, as a boy, he should love dolls.
I become more and more convinced that there are many lessons on Biblical manhood that can be taught though dolls and so 7 reasons I let him play with baby dolls:

7 reasons why I let my son play with dolls

1. To teach him that children are a blessing– Today he set down the doll and touching my belly said, ” Mom, I can’t wait to snuggle with the baby.” It melted my heart not only because I pray that as siblings they will love each other, but because I want our children to know that all children are a blessing. Even when children come unexpectedly, or out of a bad situation they are a blessing created by God. God gives life and it is not ours to decide to take even while still being formed.

2. To teach him to be like Jesus who loves children– As he rocks the baby singing the song that I have so often sung to him I hope that he knows that, “little ones to Him belong, they are weak but He is strong.” Our God is the father to the fatherless and he cares for orphans and children in brokenness and so should godly men. I pray for my Micah that he will seek justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with his God. (Micah 6:8)  especially among the fatherless.

3. To teach him to be a good daddy– When he holds the doll in his hands, I often affirm him that one day he will be a great daddy. It seams like yesterday we were bringing him home from the hospital and I know the time will go so quickly before he is grown and having his own babies. Of all the things he could be, I pray that he is a great daddy. I am so thankful for Matt’s example that is teaching him that being a daddy is a very important thing.

7 reasons why I let my son play with dolls

4. To teach him to be a husband that loves his wife– One of the ways I feel most loved by Matt is when he gets up with a crying child in the night, changes a diaper, or plays with the kids so I can have a minute of quiet. Micah is practicing these things on a stuffed doll that giggles, but to do them for his wife will be a great act of love. And we keep working on feeding the baby a bottle, because only mommy can breastfeed a baby:)

5. To teach him to be kind and gentle– I was terrified when we found out Julia was on the way. Having children 15 months apart was not a part of our plan, but it has been one of the sweetest, unexpected blessings God has given. I worried a lot about how he would handle having another baby while he was still a baby. It has taught is teaching him to be kind and gentle. But his very first lessons were in not throwing the doll across the room or poking it in the eyes. I’m glad he learned those before Julia was born and he never tossed her across the room!

6. To teach him to protect children– How many times has Julia come in to wake shake the sleeping baby? If children in this world needed only to be protected from being woken up. We need more men who will stand in the doorway to protect children.

7. And the very practical things– I love it that I get to show him and his sister how we act around babies especially how we are going to act around their baby brother in a few months. He will put the baby to sleep and tell Julia to “Shh, the baby is sleeping. Don’t wake up the baby.”  They will learn to gently touch the babies head and say gentle, and to wrap the baby when it sleeps and sing it a song when it is upset.

I don’t think that he will play with dolls forever but for now I am glad that he does from time to time.