Before Them, There was Us

Travis and I have had the best extended weekend.  The NICHE (Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators) Conference was held here in Des Moines on Friday and Saturday, so the kids went to Grandma Tammy and Grandpa Terry’s house for a few days.  This was only the second time we’ve been away from all four kids at once.  As much as we love being with our kids, we were admittedly excited for the little break.  And besides being frightened awake one night at 3:30 a.m. by the sound of our fire alarms going off because of what turned out to be a dead battery, it has been the most perfect of breaks.  Dinners out, late night runs, early morning walks, adult conversations, and two days at a homeschool conference…. Who could ask for more? :-)  Travis said it was kind of like a second honeymoon–and a timely one, too, as we just celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary last Monday!

Indeed, it has been a fun few days, but I would have to say that the very best part of our couples weekend has been the opportunity to remember just how it is that we got to this place of being the homeschooling parents of four amazing kids.  Before curriculum and conferences, before toys and tricycles, before diapers and “Da-da”s, there was us.  Had we never fallen in love and chosen to spend the rest of our lives together in God-ordained marriage, there would be no sending kids to Grandma’s house, no attending a homeschool conference or purchasing curriculum.  Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the business of raising kids that we forget why we are in the business in the first place–because we actually like each other and enjoy spending time together and because we chose to be partners and companions for life!

God has given me four beautiful children whom He has equipped me to love and to care for and to educate, but He first gave me His choice of a man to walk alongside me through this life.  As I remember that to a fuller degree than I probably have in a while, I am in total awe of the goodness of God towards me.  I don’t deserve to have a faithful husband who deeply loves God and me and our kids, who strives to follow Jesus and to lead his family, who works hard to provide and care for our household; but by God’s grace, he is mine.

What a gift.  What a weekend.  What a God….

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