“To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.” Oh, how I love that quote. And it is such a great reminder for all of us that have the blessing of being a parent.
I remember throughout the growing up years of my children when they would ask me if their friends could come over and often times my first thought was “I’m too busy” or “the house is a mess” or “we have too much going on”, but then I would stop myself and think about the fact that having them over at our house meant that I could be aware of what was going on and I could get to know the friends my children were hanging out with, so I tried to always say yes to having their friends over to our house. Throughout the years that proved to be a huge blessing because we have so many great memories of hanging out with our kids and their friends…memories I will forever.
Today my daughter Ashley brought over 6 of her friends that she met while serving her mission in Arkansas and they ate dinner with our family. We had so much fun with the 11 of us around the kitchen table telling stories and laughing together. Memories were created today.
As parents we can get so caught up in many things we have going on and we often times forget to make time for our children and their friends. What we don’t always recognize is just how quickly our kids will be grown and gone from our house…the opportunity to spend our time with them will not always be there which is why we need to take advantage of it every second we can. Speaking as a Mother of two now-grown children I can tell you that you will regret not savoring every moment you could with your kids while they were young because the time flies by more quickly than you could ever imagine.
The other thing we have to recognize is that the most valuable gift we could give our kids is our time, it’s not any material gift. I can guarantee you that my kids don’t remember what I bought them for Christmas a few years ago but they definitely remember every time I spent with them and their friends making memories together. Those are the things they will treasure and hang on to. And those are the things you will value the most as time goes on.
Be in your kids lives today. Get to know their friends and spend time with them as often as possible. Let them come over. Feed them once in a while. Laugh with them and listen to their stories and then share a few of your own. It’s amazing what you can learn about your children by spending time with them and their friends. And it’s amazing how valuable those memories will become.
Have a great Monday everyone and be sure to spend time with your kids and their friends this week!
~Amy Rees Anderson