Saturday, December 18, 2010

Nativity, edited

David and I have recently hired a Bosnian tutor who comes to our home twice a week to teach the two of us. It's great to have her helping us progress in learning Bosnian, and we love having her come to us, but there is the little issue of our children. Sometimes they would rather I pay attention to them than to our tutor. I try to divide my attention, but sometimes I just nod in their direction without really paying attention to what I just agreed to.

Hence our surprise one day when our Bosnian lesson ended to see that Eleanor had painted the entire salt dough Nativity set that we had made as a family.



I don't yell at my children. But my children always know when I disapprove. I'm not sure what give me away--my voice? my face?--but I know my disapproval feels to them as bad as if I yelled at them. I've been trying to learn to control that reaction, and in a happy parenting moment, I succeeded.  I bit my tongue and kept my eyes focused on my little girl instead of on her paint job. "See? I painted Mary in blue. I wanted her to be pretty."

I've realized the new version of our nativity is beautiful. Just like my creative little girl.

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