For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Treasure Days--The Filling

Today is Treasure Day at our house. It's the day we consciously choose to fill our time with family, laughter, love, and making memories that we treasure for the rest of our lives.

Now will every memory be treasured? Since we won't mentally videotape the day, no. BUT, part of the treasure is learning to treasure people in your life enough to make them priority, so in a way, yes, it is.

The History of Treasure Day

A lot of things all hit at once. The calendar was running amuck. It hit me that WonderGirl is a senior, and WonderBoy is a freshman, and time as a family together is limited. And running amuck is not how I want to spend the last year of both my Peeps at home, so I sat down with my Heavenly Hubby and asked how to make the time left solid. Then I started cancelling things and emptying entire weekends on the calendar. The only plan was church. Then I blocked those weekends in bright colored pen and declared them untouchable and non-negotiable.

And the Point Being?

For me, this is part of shepherding my family. A shepherd knows the flock, and the flock knows the shepherd's voice. The only way to do that is spending time together. So Treasure Days and Family Weekends are times when I choose to hear my Peeps and learn them, and the crazy wild thing is when they learn I really love them, they listen to my voice. Imagine, the teaching of Jesus actually working. Insanity, I tell you.

And, this is stewarding my time. "Steward" means to keep watch over and guard. If I steward my time, I choose to watch over how it is spent. Instead of just getting through the day, I think,
"If this were my last day, how would I want it to be remembered by those left behind me tomorrow?"
Living like that will radically change your life.

You know the saying, "Don't count the days. Make the days count"? Family Weekend and Treasure Days is that being applied to the people who should mean the most to mean. It is living intentionally and choosing activities that lead to a specific outcome.

The Specific Outcome

Specifically, I want my kids to know they are valuable.
I want to build relationship.
I want them to have great memories of our family.
I want them to learn precepts or tools for building their family or even their friendships.
I want them to learn to value others.
I want to be an example of love.

So Just How Hard is This?

The hardest part is deciding to do it. Seriously.
The honest to goodness two hardest things involved are
1. getting up off the butt and getting out of the rut and doing it,
2. saying no to other people and other options.

How Do You Do This?
I know my kids and what they like  to do, so I look for opportunities to do those things. Sometimes we do what I like. That is part of being a family. I try to incorporate something for everyone throughout the weekend.

For instance:
  • WonderBoy likes LARPing, so we made a list of thrift stores and hit them all looking for clothes for him. He is also a foodie, so while we were out and about, we visited a restaurant we had been to before. WonderGirl likes steam punk, so we hit garage sales and thrift stores looking for gadgets for her.
  • We walk around a botanical garden.
  • We do arts and crafts. WonderGirl and I like to paint, so we either paint ceramics or canvass while WonderBoy sculpts.
  • Baking--I try to do this with WonderBoy at least once a week. We'd do it more except my jeans have their limits. WonderGirl is always in the kitchen with us. One of the best things I did was bring the kids into the kitchen with me from the time they were little. Love our family kitchen. We also have neighbors who generously take baked products off our hands, too. I love those people.
  • Building something--WonderBoy and I are still trying to figure out a fort with a climbing wall and zipline. I think we can do this.
  • Legos. I invested in a master builder set awhile back, and we take a few hours and build stuff. Sometimes we pull out the tubs of Legos and determine a theme and go with that and build until our fingers hurt.
  • Board Games
  • Kayaking--You can rent or invest in your own. We don't kayak a whole day as a rule, but we will paddle around, watch the sun set, and head home as it gets dark.
  • Archery
  • We like the little festivals. Perfect place for a foodie. Lots of places are doing Oktoberfest right now. Cheap out of the house.
I'm sure there are other things that just aren't coming to mind right now, but you get the idea. We invest our time in each other because we are worth the investment, as individuals and as a family.

What Treasure Day is Not

Treasure Day is not a spectator sport. It is not sitting in the stands or in the audience while your child does something. It is doing it together, talking, learning, and valuing each other.

It's not about perfection. Leave the OCD perfection thing in a shoe box under the bed. The point is perfection. The point is the people you are with, and people are messy. Enjoy the wonder of the mess.

Yeah, But....

By the way, I know what some of you parents are thinking. You think your child is only interested in video games (which we do sometimes, btw) or loud music. Let me take a moment to burst your excuse bubble. If that is really all in this amazing world we live in that your child finds interesting, they haven't been invested in enough, and their world hasn't been enlarged enough. Or maybe, they are just following the lead of those in charge who are only interested in going to work and coming home and escaping into TV or a sports game. If you want them to be interested in something else, give them ideas of something else to be interested in. And maybe try being interested in something else yourself.

We live in a great world. Lots of options for filling Treasure Days. I hope yours is overflowing.


2014 Copyright Jerri Kelley Phillips
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