I spent a big chunk of the day with Ellie. We were a dynamic duo - babysitting the most amazing and delicious one year little girl together. Ellie is a "babysitter in training". She's only 10, so she's got a few years to go before she can make the foray into the world of real (read paid) babysitting. Ellie is a natural. She is relaxed and engaged and very silly. Wherever we go, babies and toddlers gravitate to her. Tonight was no exception. Together we played, fed, bathed, dressed, and played with little Lucie. Over and over during the evening Ellie would stop to tell me how much fun she was having. "I wish we could do this more often", she'd say. After sweet Lucie was peacefully curled up in her crib and Ellie and I were snuggled on the couch watching yet another episode of Storage Wars she said, "I really love this. I hope we can do it again."
I felt the same way.
It's funny because I think that a good night out with one of my girls involves something "big". A big event. A big production. A big plan. A big deal.
Ellie's idea of a good night out involves ... me. Plus a squishy one year old who giggles and drools. Chunks of banana on the end of a plastic fork. Toys that talk and crawling around on your hands and knees. Sleepers and bottles, a soft couch and brainless TV.
I don't know as much as I think I do.
I thought this was the year to get back into "church". It's been a long while. And that is a long story for another night and another post. Part of the reason I was so determined and committed was because of the girls. I was sure that they wanted programs and groups and bells and whistles. "Don't all kids?" I thought. Surely that's what they want. Organized chaos, icebreakers, games, speakers, sessions, and throngs of people. Especially Hannah. I was sure she'd want this. Don't all middle schoolers?
I was wrong.
She doesn't want it. She wants intelligent conversation, connection, and living rooms in people's houses. She's an awful lot like me. (Why would I have thought she'd be any different?) This weekend she had "youth" with some kids way older than her in a living room. There were no prizes, no mayhem, and no throngs of kids. There was no leader reigning the masses in. And she loved it.
I didn't know as much as I thought I did after all.
Sometimes I like being wrong.
I like being struck with the truth of simplicity. Stripped down with a bare, but sturdy foundation.
I hope I'm wrong more often. It's where the rubber meets the road.
I kind of like living there.