"See what I mean jelly bean?" "Sure do, tennis shoe!"

Bouncy blond hair, shiny blue eye, ideas bouncing around in her head, always a tease or comment; this is the spark plug of our family.

You know the type, the child who keeps you laughing. The one whose baby book should lay open so you can keep up with the lines. You start to daydream maybe you can submit an article to Reader's Digest and win $500 with these witty remarks. However, you may also dream about an invention that fits perfectly over the mouth, bringing a moment of silence into your home.

Serious conversions are almost impossible. For example, when she asks, “What's a nun?,” you go into your role of expert parent-teacher and explain thoroughly, patting yourself on the back for a job well done. Then you ask, "Well, are you going to be a nun?" "No," she answers, "a nut! "

Or the time I tried to be impatient at her dad saying he was the slowest man in the world and she answers emphatically, "Yes, but he's my man."

She's the type that doesn't really want to grow up saying she should keep her baby teeth forever, but quickly changes her mind when the tooth fairy leaves her 50 cents, checking all the other teeth to see if they might be jerked out quickly.

She's definitely her father's daughter perfecting his talent of being a first class tease. This talent must be used daily on the other siblings in the family who enjoy it to the fullest - if you know what I mean!

Yes, the spark plugs of any family are a JOY to have around. It's even hard to think of an ending to these thoughts so as she would say, "See ya later, alligator. After while, crocodile, I love you, goodbye."


The night before I was scheduled to leave for Mayo Clinic, my eight year old peeked in the bedroom door. "I can't sleep, Mom", she said. I had just finished packing six different suitcases, was trying hard to cast my worries on the Lord, and longed for my own pillow; but I decided to go lay down with my oldest.

"I'm not worried about you, Mom. I just want to go along.” she said, although her head hurt and she had a tummy ache.

We read devotions, I rubbed a soft back, and gave a listening ear. She needed to have mom close and she talked of typical eight-year old things. This was quality time and it could never be planned!

Blessings come in little eight-year old packages. All day long I am wanted for something: getting a drink, a band-aid, settling a fight, tying a shoe, cleaning up messes; but it is moments like these that I'm needed the way God really intended.

In a soft voice she whispers, "You can go now, Mom. I love you."

I'm no longer longing for my own pillow and the Lord has taken all my worries and replaced them with this special moment of love.