Tuesday, July 12, 2005

She really listens to me!

My baby is going to Kindergarten in less than a month. *sigh* I get a little teary when I drive past the school and see the preparations that are being made for the new school year....cleaning the floors, painting, putting down new ground cover on the playground. We debated back & forth about where to put her for school: public vs. private. We visited both of them and talked about it and prayed about it (although probably not enough!) We decided to put her in public school. Now, coming from a girl who attended private Christian school for 17 years straight, this is a big deal. I also taught 1 year in a private Christian school. (I also taught 3 years in a public school.)

Anyway, I won't bore you with all of the details, but after thinking, talking, seeking the counsel of those we admire & respect, and praying, we have decided on public school. If it turns out that we need to make a change, we can do so. This particular public school is actually close enough that when you think about waiting in "car line," it will probably be quicker for me to walk her to school, so that will be nice.

Well, like I said, I'm getting emotional about this whole Kindergarten thing. Also, as you can probably tell, I'm nervous. I guess I'd be nervous about one thing or another no matter where she went. (I am certainly not so naieve as to think that her world would be "perfect" if she went to a private Christian school. Like I said, I attended 2 different ones.....I know what can go on......) One thing I'm nervous about are the influences she will be under while away from me and in school from 7:30-2:15 each weekday. I have talked with her about how to respond to someone if they act badly or try to get her to do something that she knows is wrong. I've told her that even if her teacher or other classmates don't say a prayer before lunch that she still can say one before she eats. I've told her that she can invite her new friends to Bible Class and tell them about Jesus. I'm trying to take the stance that just because she may not be in a Christian school that does not mean that Jesus can't be in her thoughts and words.

I'm not trying to coach her into playground preaching; I'm just trying to teach her that she can be a good influence on others and show her "little light" wherever she is. Today, my mother-in-law related a story to me that warmed my heart and made me want to jump through the phone line to kiss Gracie!

You may remember that Gracie is in New Mexico visiting with Gramps & Gramme. She is attending their VBS. Apparently, after VBS, the adults stay to do some things and the kids will go over to a nearby building on the property and have some videos they can watch. Now, we try to be careful about what our kids watch but I will admit that I'm a reality show FREAK and Gracie has seen more than her fair share of shows like 'Survivor' and 'The Bachelor.' I know, I know......bad! I'm trying to be better and try to turn it during "really bad" parts.

Anyway......today one of the kids asked her if she could watch "Shrek 2." Now, please don't be offended if this is your child's favorite movie. We actually own the first one and Gracie has watched it many times and laughs. Chris & I have seen the 2nd one and laughed many times. However, we feel that it is not appropriate for her to watch and I have tried to even limit her watching of the first one after re-thinking some things. So, this kid asks her if she can watch "Shrek 2."

She tells her, "That doesn't teach me anything and it's not appropriate." They watched "Spirit" instead. I was so proud of her! I do not think that if she had watched "Shrek 2" that she would necessarily be destined for a world of debauchery, BUT the point is that she knew I didn't really want her watching the movie and stood up for what she felt was the right thing to do. I probably never would have found out that she had watched it, but she said, "no." I only hope and pray that she will continue this attitude of standing true to the "right thing" throughout her time at school and in the "real world."

Again, please don't be offended if you love "Shrek," but I was just so proud of her for saying "no" when it would have been so easy to say "yes" knowing that I would never know. She is an example to me! This little episode just gave me a boost of confidence that she has been listening to me and that she can say "no" when someone tries to get her to do something that she doesn't feel is right. She listened to her conscience and I am so proud of her and thankful to God for her precious little spirit!


Hope said...

Gracie is such a sweety, Jacinda. I will continue to tell you over and over again that you and Chris are doing a SUPER job in raising your girls. It makes me realize that I need to do better my own self. I'm glad she's having a good time and I know you miss her! Love the post, girl.


Malia said...

Ok, this is kind of freaking me out. It's like we are living parallel lives in different states and we don't even know each other!

Our daughter goes to kindergarten next month, too. We have had her in the church preshool for the past three years but we still debated whether or not to send her to the Kindergarten there or to public school. Both options are good, both had their pros and cons. We finally settled on the church program, holding off until 1st grade before sending her to the public school we are zoned for. I can't believe she's going into Kindergarten! Where did those five years go? I too have mixed feelings even though she's going to the same school, it's still Kindergarten, five days a week and so on.

Regarding Shrek. Wow...we did the same thing. We let Julia watch the first one a couple of years ago. We had borrowed it from my sister and she wanted to watch it all the time. After a couple of viewings I started to think that I really did not like what she was seeing and hearing. She was an early talker and very verbal and I had visions of the "a" word coming from her three-year old mouth. So we nixed Shrek and when Shrek 2 came out we let her know she would not be seeing it.

I try to be so careful about what she sees on TV, we don't have cable so her kids shows are limited to what's on PBS. However, our neighbors that she plays with have cable and Julia has been unable to resist watching what they allow on their t.v. It's not like it's anything terrible, they mainly watch Nickelodean, Disney and Cartoon Network but I don't like for her to watch all of those shows. Many of them, IMHO, like Kimpossible, Lizzie Maquire, SpongeBob are not appropriate for younger children. So I have had to ban her from indoor play at the neighbors, thank goodness it's summer and they can play outside!

OK, again I've said too much and have rambled on. I'm enjoying your blog Jacinda!

MDM said...

I was where you are several years ago with the private/public debate and ultimately chose public for now. Rachel has thrived and met a wonderful group of little people with fabulous parents. No, we don't all come from the same back-ground, but our general moral structure is so similar. I know you will get involved like I have and love her new atmosphere. I too spent so much time in prayer before Rach entered school. ( I still do!) Now, we are debating private again as middle school is getting closer and closer. (R is entering 3rd) We have time, but the horror stories of middle school days makes me want to pull her out all together!!

TMK said...

We have a 3rd grader and an entering Kinder. We went through the same things about public or private. Through prayer, our answer was public school also. We are called to be the light in this world even on the playgrounds~ Good luck mom, she will be just fine. A side note, there are alot of moms at our school who pray with their child at the front door and bike racks before sending them in. It is such a great thing to do for them, and the mom too! Also neat to let other people see you praying with your child.

PS~ We were at ACU together. I roomed with Becky James and hung out with Mandy Morue mostly. Have a great day~

MDM said...

Hi again. I did start ACU in '91. I lived with Kim Gordon (now Lawless) in Nelson, Tracy Brandon (now Kotara) in Gardner (nasty) and then onto Sikes. I hung with Tracy B. Kim G., Ginger Owens (Land), Jennifer Walker (Rutter), Stephanie Reed, Paula Larson, etc...Those were my closest cronies. I was in Ko Jo Kai. I too love all the AcU connections out there. So fun. I keep in touch with so many people from school and love it. My husband was in Knights..Darren Davis. Sweet boy from Abilene!

Jacinda said...

Ah! Okay. This is too fun for me making all of these connections. I am trying to talk Chris into leaving the girls with my parents and driving to Abilene for graduation. It's a loooong way from here...probably about 17-20 hours. He's not going for it yet, but I'm still working on it! I'd really like to now that I'm getting to know all of these "new" ACU friends. I was in Siggies and lived with Alethea (Martin) in Nelson & Sikes. My junior year, I lived with Susan (Wilburn) Newhouse, Jennifer (Reynolds) Robbins, Nicole (Deveny), & Shannon (Cox) Terry. I also hung around with Valerie (Osburn) Loe, Tracy (Goodwin) Brown, & Laura (Duff) Wade. I married Chris Shanks who was just one year ahead of us.