Family. The very idea of it stirs up memories; playing with my brothers and sisters, being tenderly cared for by my mother, having adventures with my father. The stories told to us children by our grandparents, aunts, uncles and parents. Stories of another time in America, different than the era in which we were growing up.
I knew instinctively, that when I was a mother, I would be the caretaker of my children. I would not pass them off to someone else for their daily needs. When my oldest two were four and six, they remarked that they wished they could be in daycare like some of their friends. Their friends also had divorced parents and it seemed neat to my children that they could stay at one parent's house or the other, could go to daycare and have fancy store-bought snacks, could have twice the Christmas presents.
I tried to explain how lucky they were to have a mother who stayed home with them, to have parents who worked hard to do what we felt was right by them. It was hard for their little minds to grasp.
Recently, in our home, we've been reading aloud, The Giver by Lois Lowry. A thought provoking book, it's created some great discussions around the living room.
From Amazon.com Review:In a world with no poverty, no crime, no sickness and no unemployment, and where every family is happy, 12-year-old Jonas is chosen to be the community's Receiver of Memories. Under the tutelage of the Elders and an old man known as the Giver, he discovers the disturbing truth about his utopian world and struggles against the weight of its hypocrisy. With echoes of Brave New World, in this 1994 Newbery Medal winner, Lowry examines the idea that people might freely choose to give up their humanity in order to create a more stable society. Gradually Jonas learns just how costly this ordered and pain-free society can be, and boldly decides he cannot pay the price.
In the first few chapters, one of my daughters mentioned several times that she thought she would enjoy such a community. Everything organized, everything in its place, everything controlled and simple. Her comments led to discussions on individuality and what makes life interesting. How important free choice is and how throughout history, a person or people cannot be held accountable for their actions unless they had freedom to choose for themselves.
In relation to this, I read a really great article that I felt I needed to share.
It's called The Family Culture vs. Pop Culture by Israel Wayne. You can read it HERE.
Family culture, in my opinion, is so important. The influence of generations past, when weighed for truth and rightness, is a precious thing.
Content copyright © 2012 by Jessa at Graceful Landing