Several weeks ago God brought me an idea.
I really needed a way to connect with my girls in a girlie sort of way. I wanted something that would give me a platform for conversation. Conversation that goes both directions. So, our tea time evolved.
First of all, tea time happens when there are no boys around. Mostly this means we have to wait until the little brothers are down for naps. I began reading aloud the book "Beautiful Girlhood", knowing full well that parts of it will be over their heads, and we may stop at some point and re-evaluate, but I wanted to let them know that I understand the difficulty of the changes that take place when crossing over from childhood to womanhood.
Sometimes I'm even tempted to consider writing my own curriculum and call it "Awkward Elegance" or something. Hmm. Can't think about that too long.
Anyway, we read a little, explain a little, drink a little tea, enjoy a little chocolate. Basically I want to create an every-week (or every other week) environment that gives them a platform for sharing their hearts with me. And I want to do it now, before they are teenagers. I want to have the open sharing firmly in place so that when difficult questions come up we already have a place in which to share them.
I know some moms do this at bedtime or on dates away from the house, but right now this seems to be my best option. Today as soon as I announced "Tea time!" the girls ran to collect dress up clothes. I did the quickest thing I could and plopped a hat on my head.
Listening to my children has not been one of my most stellar qualities. What they don't know is that this "tea time" is more for me than for them. I want to listen. And I want to be able to speak into their lives.
Today we had blueberry green tea using my Grandmother Good's china. We also had swiss chocolate.
Nothing deep was discussed today. In fact, after tea was cleared away, we played a rousing game of Dominoes. Some days in the spring we may have lemonade on the front porch. Next time it might be hot chocolate on the living room floor.
The place and the goodies don't matter a whole lot since I am creating an atmosphere of openness for heart conversations that I pray lasts a long time. Because this mama has an awful lot to learn.