Like A Child

I love my little Girls’ Club. We’ve been quite small, the past couple of weeks. I like that because it allows me to really hang with the girls and see what’s going on in their lives.

I prefer them small, but I also love, love when SEVERAL show up too. I love that the girls find friends who want to share their time with us.

I know every club night, just the amount of girls who show up, are just the ones God has intended to bring.

What’s special about Girls’ Club, is the girls let down their guard while we’re engaged in something fun.

Most are still pretty young and aren’t worried about presenting a specific image yet. They are still at an age where they can be silly. Many have no filter yet, so whatever comes into their head, pops right out their mouth.

I love that about them. They don’t try to hide anything.

One of our girls is having surgery tomorrow. Nothing serious, but hey, it’s surgery and she’s eight.  That’s still pretty scary.

During our project, I sat next to her and I got to hear all about what she expecting to happen. She’s a little bit scared but a whole lot brave. Now that may flip, come sometime tomorrow, but Friday she was able to talk freely about her concerns.

I was honored that she shared them with me. It’s such a treat seeing these girls grow and mature.

Well, everyone finished making their little bugs. They were SO CUTE.

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For the last 15 minutes they hung out, finished watching their movie and wouldn’t move as the doorbell rang. I don’t know if they figured if they didn’t answer the door, they wouldn’t have to go home, or what.

It’s nice having a safe place for these girls to come together where they can open up with each other without being criticized or feeling rejected.

It’s nice that I get to be apart of it too. I see them as how we were designed to be. Open, vulnerable, transparent, and trusting.

And they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them. – Mark 10:13-16.

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Best Night Ever!

BEST NIGHT EVER!

Ok, I may say that a lot. But seriously, we just had a ton of fun.

But let’s back up, and let me tell you how my evening started.

Oh man, what am I doing? Tonight is going to suck. Why do I keep doing this? I don’t want to do this.

Just hours, no minutes before Girls’ Club was to start,  I started having a mini panic attack.

I didn’t know how many girls were coming. I wasn’t sure how I was going to entertain them. I had planned on having Operation Marshmallow come out, but I had no idea what they had planned on doing, or saying. How long were they going to keep the girls attention? And what’s with the marshmallows?

When Mike was sitting in the truck, waiting for the the boys to get in to take to their dad’s after girls had already started arriving, I’m standing outside the truck door, “Take me with you. Don’t make me stay here alone with them.” (Cue background screams, laughs, giggles, singing, and yelling, coming from inside my house.)  “Honey, what was I thinking?”

No sympathy. No sympathy I tell you! “Get in there, Kim. This is your thing.”

*Sign*

Honestly, this is what happens before EVERY Girls’ Club night.

With the girls playing in my daughter’s bedroom, or sitting at the kitchen table eating pizza, I sat on the sofa, praying.

“Lord, this is all you. I opened the house up. I invited our guests. But I have no idea how this evening is going to go. So please show up and do something inspiring. Something that will make me want to do this again.”

The ladies from Operation Marshmallow arrived 20 minutes early.

Oh great, now I have to talk to them while we wait for every one to arrive. What am I going to say? I’m going to have to appear to look like I’m just SO EXCITED for the night, and I’m really not.

I’m  scared out of my mind!

Much to my relief, they brought in boxes, and boxes, and boxes of stuff. Whoa, maybe they will be able to keep the girls attention for longer than a minute.

And oh my gosh…nice, such nice and easy ladies to talk to. I’m not kidding! By the time they left I wanted to ask them if I could be their Facebook friends. I even invited them to come to Crossroads Books and Coffee this Wednesday to learn how to make sleeping mats for the homeless! Oh, and I sincerely hope they come.

Well, as the night unfolded, Julie and Dorothy talked to the girls about men and women who have been deployed overseas and how to imagine living in a land without Walmart, Walgreens, and Fry’s Food & Drugs. What if you had to go to a strange land without any convenient stores and you could only take one box with you? What would you put in it?

It was decided, my daughter would die. And she couldn’t understand why would someone would go somewhere where you couldn’t wear a dress. (See what I have to work with here?)

Julie and Dorothy were professionals with working with the girls. Such patience. And they totally understood the expiration date of a 9 year old’s attention span.

We made a care box for a solider. We learned what to put in them, and what not. We even learned what the the whole marshmallow thing was about!

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Afterwards, my daughter got everyone set up at the kitchen table to make structures out of mini marshmallows and toothpicks, while I continued to chat and get to know our guests.

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God did show up tonight and inspired. It is beautiful how he works. I am so honored to be apart of it. Life is so much more than me.

Tonight two groups of people were brought together, that truly need one another and yet, may never have met if God didn’t twist my arm, and make me do “this” every other week. Ok, I confess, he doesn’t twist my arm, but it starts off no less painful.

These little girls got to learn how they can make a difference in someone’s life. And not just anyone’s life, but a real hero’s life. They’re important. They’re needed. They can DO something that will, maybe not change the world, but definitely help someone who really could use and surely deserves encouragement.

Well, the night was a total success. I can’t speak for the girls, but I know I came out a better person than when it started.

Thank you Jesus for giving me this opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and see you work through the eyes of a child. Every time you do, it pulls down one more layer of wall I’ve built to protect myself. I become more trusting, more confident, more in love…with you. Thank you.

They Get It

I can’t believe how much the girls have grown. I’m so proud of each of them. Girls’ Club is, oh my gosh, such a treat.

I am honored to be apart of so many little girls’ lives. I pray every club night that they will experience something that will impact their future.

I’m not sure if it happens that quickly. But maybe over time. I know for me, I know it’s a gift to see them grow. To see, me grow.

Some of these girls, come in pretty little. They need help with the scissors. They need a lot of direction. They need help with the glue …oh my gosh the glue! Who doesn’t need help with the hot glue?

But little girls who have started a year ago, who couldn’t stay focused on finishing a craft, or sit still long enough to watch the short video, or remain quiet so others could, are still excited about coming.

They keep coming back! And now I watch these little girls turn into amazing young ladies. Ladies with a purpose.

Yes, some only come for the fellowship. Some are still bossy. Some still don’t get why we do, what we do. And I’m sad to say my daughter could fit into any one of these categories.

But others grow. Others sit down and do work. Others get it. Even if they don’t know they do.

Last Friday, our girls’ main event was making scarves for the homeless. A beautiful friend of mine donated fleece blankets to turn into warm scarves.

Each girl was given the chance to make one for them self and then the rest for someone else. May I say, they did a spectacular job in doing so!

However, out of seven little girls, there were two who pumped these out like nobody’s business. Even with the other girls running around singing, and dancing, and having fun, these two stayed focused.

Now I don’t know if it was because they enjoyed the craft or they could sympathize with who these scarves were going to, but these are the little girls who made my heart swell.

And these were the same little girls who struggled so much a year ago. They stuck it out and look how far they’ve come!

Now, I don’t want to knock the girls who found more joy in playing. I know they are maturing as well. We have girls as young as six and as old as ten, and yet they are still able to find things to play that they all have fun doing. That shows something.

But wait until you see….

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These are what two little girls did for someone else! They are seven, AND THEY GET IT!

I’m so proud of them. I’m so proud of them all. I can’t wait to see what the new year has waiting for us.

If this is how it starts…it’s gonna be pretty amazing !

Ice Breaker

Last night’s Girls’ Club Ice Breaker was so much fun! It was just like old times. Felt like no time had past at all!

The girls were so cute as they came in, one at a time, each got a hug from everyone who was there. Then they talked about how they have changed.

I was so impressed with their maturity. When it was time to start, I had everyone’s attention. That has never happened before. Maybe the break was good for them too.

We worked on making sleeping mats for the homeless. They were super excited to be apart of a team that plans on making 20 of them by Christmas.

The girls were so attentive as they watched carefully how to fold their bags just right and where exactly they place their cuts. I thought it was funny when they would express their concerns, whenever they accidently cut it wrong, or tore it while looping them together. We only had like a bazzion more  plastic bags.

I was super excited we had a new guest who was an awesome help to me. I don’t think either one of us knew how valuable her time with us would be. Miss Marci came just to see how we put these plastic bags together to make these mats, but she stayed to help show the girls how completely capable the girls really are. We were all so excited she came.

We also had Miss Kelsey come back to assist too. She’s always a big help! THANK YOU MISS KELSEY!

So, the night ended with dancing, because we almost always end with dancing. We did a little Whip and a little Na Na and a whole lot of fun!

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I’m hoping I can figure out how to put some pictures on here, but my tech support happens to be out in the field working, so that may not happen until he gets home…I mean, back in the office. (Hey Honey, if you read this, would you mind helping me later? Love you!)

Until then, Butterfly and I are getting ready to meet our girlfriends for coffee. It’s her first time and SHE’S SO EXCITED! So, I gotta go. Bye!

The Girls’ Club

I am so excited to introduce to you, the Girls’ Club! It is a small group I started for my daughter who was eight at the time.

My husband and I had our small group we went to. Our sons’ had their group, but my daughter was pretty much left with nothing.

I really wanted to do something that would honor her as well as God. And POOF! Girls’ Club!

Girls’ Club is a safe place where my daughter’s friends and soon-to-be friends, ages six to ten come together to learn how to be girlfriends.

We meet every other Friday from 6pm to 9pm. From 6-7 we eat pizza, but the fun really starts at 7.

The focus of Girls’ Club is for us all to learn how other people, different from me, see the world. We have done activities on having disabilities. We’ve invited several professionals to talk and show us what they do. We’ve even had a field trip to someone’s home to see what accommodations she has adopted in her everyday life.

We’ve talked to cowboys, authors, nurses, photographers and someone who was deaf and blind. The goal is for the girls to see we are all differently-abled. We all have super powers and we never have to be afraid of someone who is different from ourselves.

You wouldn’t believe the fun we’ve had!

Moms and dads are always invited to stay but are never required too. I quite frankly, can’t understand why they would want to leave! They couldn’t possibly have more fun, somewhere else!

Girls’ Club was actually birthed out of fear. Well, overcoming fear. It has helped me grow my faith. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am an introvert and also not great with kids.

Yes, I know I have six kids. God’s plan was much bigger than my own. You’ll start to see that as you grow your faith too. Our biggest fear is often our biggest opportunity to grow.

At the time I was being asked to step outside my comfort zone. Now why would I do that, right? But often times, we won’t grow unless we’re asked or pushed.

This is why I knew this was a God thing and not a Kim thing. Why in the world would I invite 6 to 12 little girls into my house every other Friday and then…entertain them?!

When you start telling people your plans and they start telling you, you’re crazy, it’s pretty safe to say it was a God idea. I certainly would never think this was a good idea.

I want to serve my God. So what could I do? Say, no? Growing faith that exceeds understanding starts when you say yes, when you really, really, REALLY want to say, no.

So here I am a year and a half later into one of the best things I could do! It’s scary. I get that. But God’s ideas are always so much better than our own ideas.

He has great plans for you! Bigger than you can dream. He loves you and wants to give you everything he has. He wants to give us pearls and yet here we stand with our pebbles.

So welcome to the Girls’ Club! We’re excited your here!

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. – Jeremiah 29:11

So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him. – Matthew 9-11