March 22, 2009

To My Parents: Who [still] Think Outside the Box

My parents have many ordinary parent virtues. They loved us, provided for us, bought us red tricycles, etc. There is a time and place to extol these ordinary virtues and thank parents for them, but that time is not now, in this posting.

This quality I have long admired in man, woman, and child: the ability to think outside the box. To approach a problem or situation and not assume that the usual course of action is the only course of action. Yesterday, at the grand old age of 24, it occurred to me that my parents both display an immense quantity of this quality.

Examples beg to be presented.

When facing daunting dental bills, they had some dental work done in Mexico. Dental work is cheaper there.

I've heard women speak of bringing the outdoors inside. Mom did that literally. Complete with Ficus benjamina trees in giant pots and clouds sponged on the sky blue living room ceiling.

Seven year olds are not generally brought to business dinners, Building Industry Association meetings, accountant consultations, or candidate's speeches. Dad thought we might learn something if we tagged along and we'd at least have a good talk in the car on the way home.

Why was there a random used car salesman at Thanksgiving dinner? Dad met him the day before (yes, at a used car lot) and found out he was new in town. I guess my parents thought outside the box about "family gatherings" too.

It didn't occur to my parent that they had to stop having children after the second one. They thought kids were fun, so they had four more. Hence, 6wayintersection.

My parents didn't only think of their own little munchkins, though. With the new birth of each of their own children, they began sponsoring a Compassion child or local crisis pregnancy center. As they prayed about how to become more involved in supporting women who chose life for their babies, God led them to become foster parents. Babies came, cried, were loved, and went- for years.

Rolling black-outs were common in the early '90s on the Big Island. When the black outs stopped, we missed the spontaneous story and board game nights. Easy fix. Dad and Mom randomly announced "Black Out Night" and turned of everything except the refrigerator (which couldn't be opened for the evening). Instant family night.

Dad thought outside the box about breakfast. He dumped leftover spaghetti into omelets, for example.

For any of the unique gifts above (except possibly the spaghetti-eggs), my parents would not take credit. It's nothing they drummed up on their own, it's Christ through them, the Hope Of Glory in their hearts (which is why they named our homeschool H.O.G.S... go figure)


Molly said...

This is a lovely post bethany, and I love your mom and dad, my uncle and auntie! P.S. HOLY COW YOUR PREGGERS!and tell yourself, and joshua, and jake, and new baby, that i love them so so so much!!

The Farmer Files said...

Hey there...what a testimony to your parents! Loved the name HOGS. So will baby #2 have a J name? We are fond of J names. ;)