Tonight Christian's team played their final soccer game. They have improved so much over the last few weeks, and it has been delightful to watch them work together and learn what it means to be teammates. Here are a few pictures of Christian from the game, and some post-game as well.
Entries in Christian (45)
There are so many things I could say about Christian. He is an amazing little guy, he has such a sweet heart, he is very loving, smart, creative, and funny. Many people, sometimes total strangers, have said to me,"He has such a contagious laugh!" I want to share about my time with Christian lately.
We played a game this afternoon that he brought home from school called "Rolling On." Here is the "board":
We took turns rolling two dice, counting the total spots on the two dice and then coloring the corresponding box above the number. The winner of the game was the first number to "reach" the top. In our game it happened to be six. He filled in the blank at the bottom with a "6" and I asked if he could write out the word by sounding it out. He looked up and said the word to himself and wrote an "S" and then figured the rest out. This is what our finished game board looked like:
What are they teaching him over there anyway?!
Here is a story that I hope will be like a little window into the heart of this complex child of ours. We are going to a birthday party for a friend of Michaela's tomorrow. Christian is just as excited as Michaela is and has been looking forward to it all week. Tonight after I put Eliana down to sleep I came out where Mike and Christian were. Christian had just brought something out of the schoolroom all wrapped up and was showing it to Mike. I heard him say that it was the Rainforest book (a book from my parents that is very cool). I also heard something about giving it away. I walked in on the tail end of a conversation, I think. Without asking any questions I said,"We're not giving that book away!"
Poor Christian! He was crushed. His llittle body sagged down, shoulders hunched forward, head drooped, and he started crying. Mike tried to explain quickly that he had just spent a lot of time wrapping this book as a gift for our friend, and that he was excited to give it to her. I saw everything in such a different light-what a sweet boy! He was eager to give up something of his own in order to make someone else happy. Mike and I both told him how nice that was, and commented on his wrapping job:
Note how he used two different kinds of paper "to make it extra beautiful" for our friend. He was quite pleased that he had done that all by himself. Really, he did quite a good job. I love how thoughtful he is, and how he was totally thinking of someone else in this situation.
A similar story is from Tuesday. We were at Christian's soccer game and each boy brings a water bottle for rehydrating after all their running around. One little boy on Christian's team ran out of water and I heard him go up to his mom and tell her that his water was gone. A little later I heard her say to Christian,"Way to show kindness to someone else, Christian," because he had poured some of his water into his friend's bottle. I loved hearing someone else acknowledging his kind choice, building him up so that he can hopefully make more good choices like that one. He got to see in a very practical way how his small sacrifice benefitted another person.
My favorite story is actually a video.
These are just a few things that I think really show Christian's heart. He's such a sensitive, funny, smart guy. These are the things I want to cultivate in his character, always with the hope that he will truly grow into his name.
Christian is playing soccer this fall and is having a great time. Many of the boys in his Kindergarten class are also on his team, and the rest of his teammates are at the same school. I love watching him make friends, and get such an excited look on his face when he sees these other kids. He has had a few soccer games so far this season, and his skills are really improving. It's so much fun to watch him "get it." He often chooses to stay on the fringe, waiting for the ball to come out of the middle of the group. He also executed a great block and was really excited about that. Here are some pictures from his game. You can see he's really watching the ball and the other kids to see what they're going to do. We're proud of him!
In Christian's class the teacher sends home a "fruit of the Spirit" when the children demonstrate any of the fruit of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23. When I picked Christian up from school today the first thing he said to me was,"I got a 'fruit of the Spirit' today and tomorrow I don't have to do any work!" Now, I don't know if he was excited because he received the "fruit of the Spirit" or because he doesn't have to do any work at school tomorrow (which, by the way, I'm not sure he understood correctly and may be disappointed tomorrow when he does, in fact, have to do work at school...). But it was satisfying to hear him speaking with such exuberance about getting this special reward. He also received one on the 8th of September and I have to confess the first one came home with much less pomp. When Mike and I took it out of his bag and looked at it we wondered if it meant he needed to work on these particular things (in the first case it was patience and self-control). After today, it is clear that these are given at times when the "fruit" is exhibited in class. I look forward to these character traits being developed in such a great atmosphere, where he is challenged and encouraged in a unique way this year. And I love that Christian can see in a tangible way the result of his good choices and the work of the Holy Spirit. I'll have to remember this for home too!
Christian has started Kindergarten at the Highland Park Presbyterian Day School. He is really enjoying his time there, staying very busy throughout his day, meeting new people, and seeing people that he has known for a while. One of the things I love about Christian is how friendly he is. He'll say hello to just about anyone, and often he'll give them some extra information just in case they wanted to know, for example, what Eliana's name means, or how old he is, or we just went to the grocery store, or how he can float. He has friends everywhere we go, or at least acquaintances. Today I ran into the Director of College Ministries at our church, Keith, and he said,"I saw Christian earlier today with his class. He was sitting on a bench being quiet 'cause, you know, he's with his class and all. I went like this [thumbs up sign, accompanied by a grin] and he goes like this [thumbs up sign and a slight grin to the side]. Then when I walked away I heard him say,'I know that guy'." Did that make anyone else laugh? I could just see him. He casts a sideways look at his buddy next to him, nods in Keith's direction, and knowingly says,"I know that guy." That kid cracks me up. He's a funny little man. And he looks handsome in his uniform! I sure love that boy.