For a time, I tried to keep all three kids in bed with me. This became known in our household as the “Family Bed.” But as my little sweet boys have grown into big boys I’ve given up. Instead, I improvised. We now pull a couple of sleeping bags out into the floor or if Dad’s on a long trip we get fancy and move their twin mattresses. So one boy ends up sleeping with me and the other two get the floor. Of course in the spirit and the “most important matter of fairness,” we rotate kids nightly and take turns for who gets to sleep in bed with momma!
Honestly, I love putting them in my bedroom together and listening to them whisper and giggle as they slowly drift off to sleep. Oh, how I love it… unless it’s a school night and the whispering and giggling have lasted 45 minutes (or turned into bickering and squabbling). One of the things I have always loved about my husband is his creativity. Upon meeting him there were two unique differences that got my attention: his creativity and his evangelistic heart for the lost. His level of creativity is put to use every day at his job, but it’s also something he brings into his parenting.
He works hard to find creative ways to show the love of Christ to our boys. Whether it’s looking at God’s goodness through nature or walking them through a family devotion/prayer, my husband is always looking for innovative ways to help them connect with Jesus. Not long after I started implementing the “Family Bed” arrangement when Daddy travels, he got a wee bit jealous. He thought it wasn’t fair I got all the sweet cuddly time of jabbing, grinding, and choking while he slept alone in a king-size bed with 800 count sheets in a quiet and comfortable hotel room. Oh, the irony. So Dad chooses to execute a new addition to Family Bed by adding Pallet Night. Yep, Pallet Night…
Every Friday night the boys pull out the sleeping bags and grab their pillows and head to our room. They get all situated and we settle in for a night together. Sometimes we all five start out with a movie in our bed and sometimes we just each grab a book, settle into our spot, and read ourselves to sleep. Our goodnight is very Walton Family style. And it’s another way my husband creativity sneaks family time into our regular routine. I just spent a few long nights being jabbed in the ribs, choked around my throat, and listening to the grinding of teeth. I think I am due a nap. Good news is his travel schedule is slowing down for a few months so I’ll be sleeping with warm-n-cuddly a lot more than rib-jabber, teeth-grinder, and throat-choker.
On a side note, here’s a good middle-grade book for tweens to consider checking out Swipe. It’s dystopian, apocalyptic fiction, which is quite the trend today for middle school-aged kids. An entertaining book set during the End of Days with a strong biblical foundation and a fresh, modern perspective! A definite conversation starter for you and your child.
The website describes it as an“Apocalyptic dystopian fiction at its best. Angler’s sharp wit and dexterity with political themes are matched only by the thrilling suspense on every page.” —Lis Wiehl, New York Times bestselling author and FOX News correspondent