Sister series, part 2

People / Monday, June 4th, 2012


…taught me about toys for children in church:

pencils and white paper.

(Confession up front: I haven’t arrived yet.)

That’s all she takes to church to amuse her kids. They’re getting older now (3, 6, 9, and 11), but she started that policy at least two years ago, maybe more.

Think how much hassle and shuffle it would save…! And she said it worked. The kids had a couple of difficult Sundays and then settled calmly into the routine.

I remembered this recently, when I took an unusual boatload of games and activities to a Sunday evening members meeting. Armed for bear, we sat in the back this once and let the kids play on the floor.

They were H.O.R.R.I.B.L.E. Three times worse than usual.

So I wonder… and perhaps this Sunday I will try it.


…graciously pushes me to think out of the box. She is the one who plants pansies in secondhand teacups, uses limestone to make stepping-stone paths in the grass, knows how to compost properly, and can grow anything in the universe. Her household décor regularly includes stones, leaves, bare twigs, old books, wild berries, thrift store finds, glass jars, and barbed wire. Beautiful, restful, homey.

She inspires me to reuse the ordinary in an extraordinary way. Example: it used to be if I wanted a flower pot I’d go to the store and buy one. Cheap, plastic, because I didn’t want to pay for better. Yet it might still cost $15. Now, I’ll head for the thrift shop and look for a $2 pot or pan or mug, an old flour sifter, a basket, a bin, or a crock to convert to a flower pot instead.

‘Vantage number one: thrift

‘Vantage number two: class

‘Vantage number three: originality

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mama zook
10 years ago

Yes, Shari, children can be entertained with very little, the youngest, with dot to dot letters of the alphabet upper case and then lower case (even Kenzie likes this now), and as for the decor, it’s so nice when you can decorate with something that you will not see in someone else’s home! I’m loving these posts of yours!

Wendy Zook
10 years ago

You post faster than I can comment! 🙂 I love it, please, keep it up!

We do notebook and pen for our oldest two for church. My one year old still gets a book or two, maybe a toy and a snack. It still feels like we have a circus going most Sundays, but I do think less is more in this case.

Thrifting; oh, how I love it. I don’t do much decorating with it. I should start looking! My favorite thing to do is find wonderful fabric for my girls. Everything is suspect; I have used pants, skirts, dresses, shirts and sheets. I always have to chuckle when someone asks me where I got my fabric. 🙂 In fact, t-shirts take very little work to turn it into a comfy playdress.

10 years ago

Loving your posts. And I love thrift store shopping and up-cycling and repurposing. It’s so much fun to do with my daughters!