I’ve contemplated posting this for a while. My hesitation was that I think for those of you that don’t know me outside of the internet there is a misconception that I have it all together as a mom. I don’t. I goof up quite often. I don’t always show grace or patience. I’m not always fully engaged with my kids. I’m normal. I do try to be very intentional with my kids though. Chris and I have certain things that are very important to us to pass along to our children. One of those things is a concern for all people…selflessness…to know what it is to give sacrifically. I soak in stories from other parents on how they instill life lessons to their kids, so for that reason I’ll share one we’ve been doing. I fully support giving financially to various non-profits that help with hunger, but I know my kids don’t always understand the impact of a check written. To their eyes I am just writing something on paper. So to instill in them the reality that they can help provide food for others we’ve started having “Rice Night”. We do it a couple of times a month.
When I holler “Dinner’s ready”…everyone scrambles to their seats to find this:
Then we pass around a jar and everyone (including the toddler) puts their money in the jar. Then everyone gets a plate of rice for dinner. We use rice as an example of what many families eat for every meal.
We explain to the boys that the money we would have spent on our dinner we are now putting in the jar instead. Once we have the jar full I divide the money up among the boys and take them to the grocery store. There they get to buy healthy food, pay for it and deliver it to our church’s food pantry (where they know people who are hungry come to get food). For dinner the only option is rice. However, later in the night if they are hungry I let them snack – I want it to be a positive experience. It has been cool to see how the older two boys now frequently ask “Is it Rice Night yet?”…and they don’t really like rice.
What are some things your family did growing up or that you do now that have impacted your character?