Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Making Time Apart Easier for Young Kids

When we took our oldest 2 kids to the Dominican Republic for a mission trip our 6 year old and our 4 year old got to go to Nana and Papa's house.  They had a blast, went tons of fun places, and drank chocolate milk every day (or so they've told me many times since they got back, to which I reply, "I'm happy you had chocolate milk at Nana and Papa's house, but if you had chocolate milk every day at home then it would not be a special treat when you got it at Nana and Papa's house." -- blank stares is all that answer gets me!). 

I knew they'd be very well cared for with my husband's parents, but I worried they'd get homesick.  Especially our Little Girl, who joined our family 19 months ago via adoption from Ethiopia.  This was the first time I'd left her overnight and unfortunately it had to be for a week this first time, but I did feel she was ready and that staying with grandparents she loves and is comfortable with and having a brother stay with her would all help.  But, I had my prayer partner praying over the situation and had been praying myself for months because there was the potential for it to go badly.  I mean this is a little girl who has had the experience of losing her first family forever and I worried she'd think we'd left her forever.

So, in addition to praying, I talked to her a ton about it.  To the point that she finally got very firm with me and said, "I KNOW that, Mommy!  I KNOW you are coming back!"  And all I could think was "Praise God" for that confidence because that must only come from Him!

And I also made these:

A dollar store gift for each of the kids to open every day we were gone with a tag attached that counted down the days until we'd be back.

Over the top?  Maybe, but I think it works to make the time apart just a little easier on the little ones.

Don't worry, I do not intend to send them with gifts for each day when they go away to college!  I just plan to go with them, move right into the dorm -- kidding!

Find more Works for Me Wednesday here.

1 comment:

  1. When my husband and I went to Ethiopia for our first trip, we didn't bring our five year old. She went to my sister's house. First time we had both left her for more than a night. I made a card for her to open each night, with a little note and a surprise inside. Not sure if I did it more for me or her, but leaving for that long is hard. And she told me later that she loved it. So I'm with you!! I think those little surprises for the little ones when you travel are great!


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