Category Archives: Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #7

Everytime you go away, you take a piece of me with you…

Paul Young, 1985

So it’s been 13 days and 12 nights since we’ve seen you guys. Now I am not going to lie to you, by the time you read this you will be old enough to understand that mommies and daddies need a break from their kids, so let me say that this time away from you guys has been uhhhh-mazing (that means amazing to you). It’s like when you take a holiday from work, you come back pumped and revitalized and full of ideas and you make the other people in your office quite sick with your tanned skin, big ideas, and your post holiday glow. Same thing. This time away from you guys has me feeling all holier-than-thou about my parenting. Because let’s be honest, there are a lot of flaws with my parenting skills, how you guys have turned out alright is still a mystery to me, but yes I have grand schemes and ideas for our future. I’m going to be a better mom, you are going to fabulous kids and all will be right with the world. And then you’ll wake up on Monday morning and well… things will probably go pear shaped as they do on Monday mornings.

But yes. That’s why a break is good.

Because it reminds us how much we love each other, how we miss each other when we’re apart is an indication of how deeply we care for each other. Sometimes in the day to day rat race that is life, the only time I actually look at you and really fall in love with you all over again is when you’re asleep in your bed, and I come in to make sure you haven’t kicked your blankets off and that you aren’t hanging over the side of your bed, and only THEN do I take that moment, in all your silent sleeping beauty, to really take you in. The rest of the 23 hours and 50 minutes of the day are just a blur of work, school, taking and fetching, cooking, shouting, yelling, crying, kissing, making up, administration and LIFE.

But these 13 days and 12 nights your Dad and I have had a ball without you, but in everything we’ve done and in every moment of peace and quiet we have talked about you, laughed about you, expressed our hopes and dreams for you, it’s true – our lives revolve around you guys! I’ve fallen in love with you all over again and I can’t wait to squeeze the life out of you when I see you again. Now calm down, this doesn’t mean that I didn’t love you before. My love for you is unconditional and unwavering, but sometimes we don’t like each other, and that’s cool. Because even when we don’t particularly like each other for that moment, there is nothing or no one who can replace the deep hole in my heart that you two have squeezed yourselves into.

So I’ve said it a million times here on the blog, but I just want you to know, for realsies, fo sho’, that when you read this as teenagers, just know that these two outdated, old fashioned loser parents of yours (isn’t that what all teenagers think of their parents?) love you so very much, that regardless of the arguments we will have, regardless of punishment which will be metered out for the stupid things you are SURE to do while growing up, regardless of how many times you slam the door in my face and regardless of how many times I swipe you across the bum with my slipper – you guys are my everything, I love you, I can’t imagine my life without you two in it and even though this parenting thing is hard and I may make mistakes, I am so grateful to God for the opportunity to raise you two and I wouldn’t swop this job for anything in the world

Assuring you of my constant love and admiration

Mom xxx

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #6

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah

We are living in tough times. While I want to protect and shield you from all that is evil, I can’t make like these atrocities are not taking place around us. I can’t lull you into a false sense of security when we are all susceptible… all potential victims. I need for you to be aware, alert to the evil dangers that will cross your path, vigilant and on your guard all the time. It’s a sad state of affairs when parents have to teach their children to be wary of everyone and everything.

Parents, these days, need to literally frighten their children, in an effort to ultimately protect them. It makes me feel sick.

So here it is.

Don’t trust everyone. Let very few people into your personal space, and even those people – you need to be wary of. If any person ever touches you in a way that you don’t like, talks to you in a way that makes you feel unsafe, even LOOKS at you in a way that gives you the creeps, get.out.of.there. I know, oh I know, that there will come a time when you won’t tell me everything, when you will freak out if I come into your room without knocking, or go through your stuff without asking, but I need you to feel like you can tell me anything. And as much as it’s up to me to foster that sort of relationship where we feel comfortable enough to talk about anything, I need for you to trust me, to believe that my paramount concern is your protection, your safety and your happiness. This overrides any other emotion – anger, disappointment or hurt that I may feel over something you may have done; I promise to work through all those reactions if you just talk to me and help me to keep you safe.

I wonder what the statistics will show by the time you are my age, my mind boggles at the idea that it can get ANY worse than it is right now? I wonder how many more terrifying headlines we will read, how many more families will suffer at the hands of evil? How much more blood will be shed, how many lives will still be lost, or left tainted? I don’t want you to be a statistic! I don’t want you to live in fear for your life! I don’t want you to be a victim! So I’m telling you the truth here. The world we live in is evil and it’s not going to get any better.

So I release you into the care of The Almighty. Believe that I will do everything in my power to protect you, but there are some things that not even I can shield you from. I pray that you walk with the Angels wherever you go. And I pray that I will raise you to be wise! Wisdom is a tricky thing, and common sense is not common at all. But I urge you to be wise in your choices and decisions – choose your friends carefully, be wise about the places you choose to hang out at, and if that little voice inside smells a rat, it most likely is a rat and you need to listen to it. Don’t do things to fit in; so many bad things happen to good people because they were trying to fit in with the cool crowd. Don’t let any person make you do something you don’t want to do, and don’t be fooled into believing the horrible lies some people will tell you to make you do something you don’t want to do, as convincing as they sound at the time. You do not need to learn from your mistakes – if you KNOW in your heart that what you are about to do is wrong, then don’t do it. The line between fun and stupid is so very thin, please tread lightly here.

And then some things may happen that you simply can’t help or avoid… these will be the hardest to deal with but again, trust me here and let me help you and be there for you. We need to stick together. With all the carnage out there in the real world, we have to do everything we can to maintain some semblance of “normal” in our own little world, if we want to survive these crazy times. So while the tone of this post may be scary, depressing and leave you feeling somewhat unsettled (that was my intention because I need you to know the truth) we will still live life to the fullest. We will do happy things, and go to happy places and try new things and enjoy everything that life has to offer. While I still know what makes you laugh and what makes you cry. While I can still make you feel safe with a cuddle and kiss. While I can still fix anything with a plaster. While I am still stronger and braver and better than the monsters under the bed. I vow to give you your best life. The rest is up to you and God.

Love you both,

Mom xxx

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #5

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah

Just a quick note on soul mates…

When you get married one day, I hope that it’s to your soul mate. Sometimes soul mates are hard to recognize; it’s not all Tweety Birds, stars and soft music like in the movies, and sometimes soul mates can be a real pain in the butt, sometimes you’ll wonder how the HECK this person could be your soul mate and you’ll wonder if you made a mistake. Then that person will do something out of the blue that reminds you that, yes, indeed, they are your soul mate and for a little while all is right with the world. Then they do something else to screw it up.

I love your Dad, ok. He is, without a doubt, my soul mate. But sometimes he drives me INSANE. And I want to take my soul back from him and tell him to find a new soul mate. You guys know, don’t you… you hear us having heated conversations while smiling tightlipped at you and saying “no, we not fighting, this is how mommies and daddies talk.”  False smile. Daggers for daddy. We really are warping your idea of how big people behave, hey.

Anyway, I just want to confirm that even when we’re throwing glacial stares across the room at each other, and you see me making weird gestures towards Daddy’s turned head, I do still love him and that I’m not really going to pack my bags and leave.

Mommies and Daddies don’t always agree on everything. Mommies like to be right and know what is best for the children. Daddies don’t understand that Mommies are always right at the time, even though 9/10 times in hindsight, they will come to their senses and admit that the Mommies were right. Your father thinks I am a Miss Know-it-all, he says I don’t like to be wrong, and that I like to have the last word. I told him he is absolutely right and that is why he is my soul mate, because he knows me so well! Although you may think that people who are the same get on well because they have the same tastes, the same likes and dislikes and the same temperament, the opposite is also true. Dad and I could not be more different, we are like chalk and cheese, but somehow it works. I guess opposites do attract, hey. So a lot of our disagreements are usually because we see things so differently, but the good thing is that sometimes your Dad makes me see things that I would have totally missed on my own. He has opened my eyes to things I would never have taken an interest in on my own, and some things I quite enjoy. I can’t say I am an avid soccer fan, but I do enjoy a live match, and I do enjoy watching HIS passion for the game. A passion that he will force upon you, no doubt!

A soul mate is someone who you want to spend the rest of your life with, a person who completes and complements you… and compliments you! A soul mate will do anything and everything in their power to make you happy, and always have your best interests at heart, but it doesn’t mean that the two are always on the same page. It doesn’t mean that you won’t be at logger heads with your soul mate from time to time, and it doesn’t mean that you won’t want to strangle your soul mate when he or she makes you mad. A soul mate doesn’t like to see you upset, and will help you make things better, even if it’s just by making you a hot cup of tea. Because tea fixes everything, just trust me on this one.

I hope that one day, you two will find your soul mates, like I have. While I hope this happens far, FAR, into the future because I want to be the only person invading your soul for a long time yet, I do hope that one day you will find the perfect partner who will be the frosting to your cupcake, the light to your dark fridge in the middle of the night, the bubble to your bath, the love of your life.

It feels good to be loved, and to love, and I hope that the love your Dad and I share, will be communicated through to you, so that you feel loved too. To overflowing. Because you are.

Assuring you of my constant love and affection,



Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #4

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah

So we’re in our new house. You guys love it and whenever people come and visit you pull them eagerly to your rooms to show off your space. I call your rooms the milkshake rooms; Liam your room looks like a blue bubblegum milkshake threw up all over it and Hannah, your room looks like a pink milkshake went through a blender without the lid on it. I don’t care that your rooms are one big fat cliché…blue for boys, and pink for girls, because ever since I dreamt of having a family and having a house, I knew I wanted a pink and blue room. And well, here we are!

The reason for my love letter today, is to remind you of our journey to getting this house, so that we do not become complacent and too comfortable with our blessing. Yes I want you to enjoy this house, to make it a home with dad and I, but I want you to always remember that nothing (almost nothing) worthwhile ever comes easy. When Dad and I got married, we lived in a tiny first floor apartment. Your father always used to say that our bedroom was next to the oven, because it was that cramped. But it was big enough for the two of us. I used to run down the stairs early on a Saturday morning to be the first person to hang our laundry out, and then I’d have to stay at home all day to keep an eye on it! Ha! We stayed above a man who used to have a party at least four times a week, and his guests would park us in and they’d all be drunk and out of order and the parties would go on for days, not hours, DAYS! But with all the problems with that tiny place, we had some good times there. Our families used to visit from Durban, how we all fitted I have no idea. We even had a “tenant” for a few weeks when my cousin’s boyfriend at the time needed a place to stay. Liam, you were conceived there and your pending birth was probably the catalyst to us buying our first place. We bought a two bedroom duplex in a quiet area in Florida Hills. It was an old complex with big rooms and the space was generous as compared to newer units which were popping up all over Joburg. But the kitchen was tiny. It was so narrow that two people could hardly stand shoulder to shoulder in it. You had to stand in a line in that kitchen! But it had this beautiful bathroom which was in the middle of the two rooms and could be accessed from either room. It had this big freestanding claw bath which Liam just loved to splash in! The parking was a real schlep and visitors had to park on the road which used to freak the Joburgers out, the Durbanites didn’t mind this too much but the poor Joburgers with their alarms, high fences, tracking systems and the like would NEVER leave their car parked on the road, didn’t we know the hijacking statistics? Our duplex was on a hill and it had the most stunning views of the Westrand, we used to dine on the little patio often. There was a scary staircase which Liam tumbled down a few times and one of those olden days stoves that still had a warmer drawer that Liam would climb into and play in. It was our intention to keep this starter home and rent it out when our family and finances grew and we were able to buy a bigger place. It was great for a young couple with one child. The complex was full of old ladies who tended the gardens lovingly and the body corporate meetings were tea parties where the old folk would get together and discuss how we could make our surroundings better. We were happy there.

Then quite unexpectedly we learned that Hannah was on her way. We were in no way financially ready to buy another property, let alone have another kid. We needed our helper to live in and there wasn’t space in our duplex for that. We needed to move and fast. Sadly we decided that our dream had to change and we had to sell up to accommodate our growing family. We found a place even further from work. But the selling point was that it had servants quarters (politically incorrect phrase, but that’s what its called!). It had a decent sized yard for you guys and you each got your own room. AND we were desperate. We moved two days before I was scheduled to give birth to you, Hannah. But it was far, far away. We spent 3 hours in traffic – sometimes more – everyday. That’s almost half way to Durban in a day. Hannah, you were born, Zoleka moved in and we agreed that this was temporary, until we could find a house to buy. Over the next TWO years, we looked at hundreds of potential houses. In that time, I grew more and more annoyed at the distance we lived from where we actually did life. Work, church and school were on the opposite side of Joburg. We would leave when it was dark in the mornings and come home when it was dark – even in Summer! I was so angry that I spent such a little time with you Hannah because I was always at work or in traffic. I was angry that poor Liam had to get up at the crack of dawn and go to school half asleep and then he’d have to endure that traffic with us – that’s a lot of time spent in a small car for a little boy. I barely had time to cook in the evenings and thankfully Zoleka would cover for me, but our evenings were a mad rush of getting home, finishing dinner, getting you guys bathed and sorted and ready for bed, it was very hard and not the life I had pictured for us. We had no intention of staying there for long, but one year turned into two. After the first year, when the 10% increase in our rent was due, we refused to negotiate another year’s contract because we were adamant we would NOT be there for another year. But God had other plans for us. Liam had his second birthday in that house, Hannah had her first birthday there, AND her second birthday. We spent our weekends viewing houses, which is a horrible thing to do with two small children; in the car, out the car, kids are miserable, kids are tired, kids are touching other people’s stuff, dad is frustrated, mom wants to cry. We spent the week trawling sites, dealing with agents who promised that THIS house was the one, but they never delivered. Dad changed jobs, I started blogging, you kids grew. While renting is ideal because you do not have to worry about rates and taxes and geysers bursting and the stove not working – because the landlord will sort all this out for you, it’s not YOURS. For fear of our dear deposit, I never drilled holes in the walls, which meant I hardly put anything up; no photos, no homely touches, nothing. I caved and let Liam stick all his school work on the walls in his room using Prestick but even that gave me the heeby geebies because I was so afraid to damage anything. I couldn’t wait to get out of there. I know it was a roof over our heads, I know we had many happy times there, and I wasn’t ungrateful, I just wanted MORE. My own house, close to the places we needed to be, within our price range and with potential to grow there.. not in number, but in capacity – spiritually, mentally and emotionally. I felt stifled by our present living conditions.

So when we found THIS house, it was more than just finding a property on a street. It was five years worth of looking, waiting, hoping and praying. We had come full circle and our time of testing was finally over. Not forever, because we know the tests do come, all the time, but it was a beautiful respite, it was the answer to many, many prayers, not only from us but from many people who were praying with us for a house! It stands as a symbol of God’s faithfulness and of how he rewards those who wait on Him. When I look back, I can see how we were not ready for this house right up until now. Our circumstances turned just in time, the place we were renting was put up for sale and we were told we would have to be out literally a week after we had intended to be out anyway. My relationship with Dad had matured during this season of testing and I know now, that we were not ready for this responsibility before this. I have no doubt in my mind that all this has a touch of God on it, and this is why I want you to thankful for this roof over your head every day.

I know that you will love it here, and as you read this as Big Liam and Big Hannah, I hope you will reminisce on the good times that I KNOW we will have in this house of ours. I said earlier that we shouldn’t become complacent or comfortable with our blessing, because the point of a blessing, is to bless someone else with or from it.. that’s where the phrase “blessed to be a blessing” comes from! Let’s make our house a home where people will come in, and leave changed! For the better. Let us always help those who do not have a roof over their heads, those who are homeless, hungry and without hope. Let’s be beacons of light, because we KNOW firsthand of the glory of God. We are blessed to be a blessing, don’t ever forget that.

Love you madly



Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #3

Throughout your life, you will go through patches of good and patches of bad. It will occur in all areas of your life – your schooling career will have its ups and downs, as will your friendships, as will your finances, your love life, your job, your mood.. that’s just life. What’s important to remember is that the bad patches should never define or make you who you are. Although the bad times will build character and test your hardiness, and you should always remember that every cloud has it’s silver lining and that without the rain, we’d never get to see rainbows, and let me tell you, at age two and three, you guys LOVE rainbows!

Here’s a revelation: nothing is ever as bad as it seems. It may sound like I say this lightly, but time and maturity and that beautiful thing called hindsight have taught me that even the toughest problem has a solution. It may not be the solution you expect, or the solution that you want, but nothing is unfixable. What I have found is that your attitude and your determination pretty much determines how things will work out for you. Don’t roll your eyes at me, because it’s true. Yes, you will suffer tragedy in some form. Yes, you will experience heart ache and despair in your life. Yes, you will experience confusion and angst and you won’t know which way to turn and it will feel like your life is falling apart. This, I cannot spare you from, even though I wish I could. But how you confront these sad situations – how you deal with your grief – will be the real challenge. Don’t let life get you down, seek out the positive in every situation. It’s not always easy to pick yourself up, especially when life throws you an unexpected curveball, but always try to talk your mind out of its slump. Your mind is a dangerous place, and you need to make sure that you fill it with constructive and positive things. You need to be able to talk yourself off the window ledge, and not let your mind talk you into jumping. Perhaps this all sounds foreign to you now, but one day you will realize the power you hold, just in what you think and in the attitude you choose, especially in dealing with adversity.

You need to be your biggest fan, because mom won’t always be here. I want you to be comfortable in your skin, I want you to rise above the mutterings of the crowd, and live your life with a can-do attitude. It doesn’t come naturally, it’s something you have to work at everyday, it’s a choice you make every morning when you get out of bed. Believe me, there are days even now, when I wish I could stay in bed all day and not face up to my problems, but I won’t allow myself to wallow there for too long. And that’s the beauty of it. YOU, and you alone, can make that decision. It may be hinged on circumstance or situation, but ultimately your attitude depends solely on you.

Some very smart people had this to say about attitude. How cool? And how true?

If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.

Maya Angelou


Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.

Thomas Jefferson


Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.

Zig Ziglar



There is little difference in people, but that little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative.

W. Clement Stone


You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude toward what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you.

Brian Tracy


Success or failure depends more upon attitude than upon capacity. Successful men act as though they have accomplished or are enjoying something. Soon it becomes a reality. Act, look, feel successful, conduct yourself accordingly, and you will be amazed at the positive results.

William James


If a person gets his attitude toward money straight, it will help straighten out almost every other area in his life.

Billy Graham


It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than anything else, will affect its successful outcome.

William James

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #2

So one day you will decide what you want to do with the rest of your life in order to make a living every month. By this I mean you will need to eventually get a job to afford all the things you will need and all the things you would just like to have, because mom and dad will soon cut the purse strings. I do hope that the thing you eventually end up doing for money, will be something that you love to do and that your 9 – 5 will not be a grind, but sometimes it doesn’t always work out that way.

My advice for choosing a career goes something like this. Do what you love. The end. There is nothing worse than being stuck in a job that you hate, because it really will affect every aspect of your life. Work is worse than school, in that you spend like 90% of your natural life there. At least at school you get tea and lunch breaks and the odd detention where you can just relax and unwind. Work is a place you go five (sometimes six) days a week and if it’s not a place you enjoy going to, it can make your life a misery. So it is a decision that requires a lot of thought and prayer. I will support you in whatever it is you decide to do, although I must admit that I’d prefer you to go with a more stable career, rather than joining a circus or busking at an underground station for loose change. I believe in the value of education, this coming from someone who is yet to complete her degree, but I do believe that your attitude, your determination and your will to “make it” will far more determine your success. Be passionate about what it is you are doing – at work and at play – and while the outcome is the sweetest victory (a corner office with a great view / travelling the seven seas until you start to grey), don’t forget the joy in the journey which leads you to your destination (the people you meet along the way, the experiences you enjoy/suffer while you travel).

Your dad and I opted to travel the seven seas, rather than continue our formal education after high school. I can’t say that not having completed my tertiary education has negatively impacted me, neither your Dad, but I do think that studying whatever you decide and getting it out of the way is a surefire way to know that you have something to fall back on if all else fails and my hope for you is that “all else” will NEVER fail, but sometimes life throws you a curveball and I simply think that it’s better to be prepared, right? Right.

Liam, at the tender age of three you want to be a chef some days and a driver other days. If you continue in this vein, I hope that you will be a world renowned chef and perhaps a driver of an aeroplane? That will make mommy very happy. I think you would do well in a courtroom because you have such strong negotiating skills. You are left-handed and I wonder if this means you will be more creative? I see it in you already – you love to colour, draw, paint and build and your thinking is always so out of the box! Hannah, currently your career choices lean toward being a dancer or a singer – hmm joining a circus may be on your horizon. I’m kidding baby! You are far too young to be making such decisions.. for both of you, whatever you decide and wherever life leads you, I just want you to be happy. I will support you (begrudgingly if you do decide to join a circus) in whatever you decide to do.

Can I ask that you don’t make money your main goal in life? Make a budget and stick to it, then everything will be ok. DO NOT get sucked into the credit whirlwind, if you can’t afford something and mom and dad can’t help you, then SAVE. Unfortunately in life, you will have to take SOME things on credit.. like buying a house or buying a car but don’t make bad debts, budget for these things and be a good payer. We all want more money, want nice things and want bigger and better. But always consider what you WANT versus what you NEED, ok?

Go out there and be amazing, only you have the power to make yourself happy or sad, or to go big or go home… and please believe me, there is nothing wrong with going home sometimes. My prayer is that in all things, you will use Godly wisdom and common sense, because sense actually isn’t common so I have to pray that you at least exercise common sense when deciding what you want to be when you’re all grown up. Remember that nothing is ever as complicated as it seems at the time, you always have a choice, and you can always change your mind.

Love you babaloos



Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #1

So I’ve decided that I need to write to you guys on certain issues so that you know where I stand and how I feel about certain things so that there aren’t any grey areas for you as you grow up. And I hope that my experience can help you. You do not have to take my advice, or follow my path, but I at least want you to learn from my experiences so that you don’t have to make the same mistakes – believe me, the person who said you need to make your own mistakes was stupid. You don’t. If you can learn from someone else’s mistake, why the heck would you want to go through that trauma too? Stupid hey? So I’m going to start a little series of letters entitled Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah and number them, and I hope that you guys will use these orders from mom  letters to empower yourselves.

Anyway, the first thing I think we need to cover is this boyfriend/girlfriend thing. Now Daddy will tell you that Granny and Pa were very strict in this regard. Daddy was not allowed to step foot up the passage in our house, unless he was going to make a wee in the toilet. He was not allowed in my room. Ever. Now while I hope that I will be less dogmatic in my approach, I want you to understand that there is no rush in doing the whole girlfriend/boyfriend thing; it is so overrated. So just as my mother told me, I want to tell you that you should have LOTS of friends… boys and girls… go out and have lots of fun, but don’t get too serious, too young. When you are young, everyone thinks getting serious is THE best thing ever. Well I am here to tell you, it isn’t and while I know you will only nod your head in agreement with me when you read this in your late twenties / early thirties, I hope that you will at least remember this when you are doodling hearts and the letters of his/her name and yours in the margin of your school books. You will have PLENTY of time to get “heavy” – and believe me, when you get heavy, there’s more complications, more sweat and tears and more strife than joy – IF you are not ready for it. So while you may feel like you are going to pass out from the physical pain of not seeing “that” girl or boy because Dad and I won’t let you go out on a Friday night, or we disconnect the wifi so you can’t sit up all night social-networking with the “love of your life,” I can assure you that you will survive and that you will thank us one day for pulling in the reigns.

Can I tell you something that may surprise you? I had one steady boyfriend all throughout high school. It wasn’t Dad by the way. Ha. I don’t live with regret AT ALL (it’s a useless emotion), but when I think of how much fun everyone else was having while I was playing house and going steady, I do think that maybe I could have left the going steady for later on. Even if you think that this is the one, in this situation I want you to use 90% of your head and 10% of your heart; give it a few years to make sure. Don’t settle kids… you are worth so much more, you deserve so much more, than settling. God has such amazing things in store for you, and I don’t want you selling yourself short because you think some blue eyed boy or girl is the one.

Guard your hearts, don’t be so bloody emotional about everything, and please do not ever tell me I don’t understand, because I do! In all things put God first, and he will direct your steps, and one day you WILL find the one , when the time is right, hopefully when you are 30 years old. I’M KIDDING OK!!! Getting serious with someone means sacrificing a lot of yourself, your ideas and your ideals for the sake of that person, it means putting the other person first and always considering someone else’s feelings above your own – AND this is not a bad thing, it’s beautiful and wonderful and fills you to overflowing BUT guys, seriously, enjoy your youth, the world is your oyster and one day when you’ve done everything YOU-YOURSELF-JUST-YOU have wanted to do, THEN you can consider getting serious because you will fully understand the implications of giving yourself to someone else and vice versa.

And yes, no boys/girls will be allowed up the passage. Bedrooms are for sleeping. Alone.

Now, I want you to read this story that I found on Lizanne’s blog, and really let it sink in ok?

Love you guys



Sweet sixteen had finally come! I never thought I’d make it. But I did. And it was amazing. My parents threw the birthday party of the century, and I had more people over than I could count. The whole day had been awesome. But as I watched the sun begin to set, I knew the best part was soon to come. It was late in the evening. Confetti had been swept up, helium balloons had started to sag, and gift wrapping had been folded neatly and tucked away for my mom’s later use. As I sat at my window studying the dusky sky, Dad peeked into my room with a smile. “Ready to go , Sweetie?” He asked. Was that a trick question? I wondered as I scrambled to my feet. I’d been waiting for this night for five long years, and it was finally here! I was now officially allowed to date!
The plan was for my parents and me to go to my favourite restaurant on the night of my sixteenth birthday and officiate the agreement, go over standards, and discuss rules and such. And now we were finally on the way. I sat across from my parents in a quiet corner booth. Having just placed our orders I figured it was time to get on with it. “So. I can go out with any guy I want to, right?” I squealed, hardly able to contain my excitement. Mom and Dad chuckled. Dad answered, “Well, we agreed to that, didn’t we?”
“Sweet!” I exclaimed, doing a little victory dance in my seat. My parents had held me off for years, but now that the time had come, they would let me date any guy I wanted! Of course they knew I had a good relationship with God and wasn’t too short on common sense, either.“Now wait just a second” Mom interrupted with a smile. “You have to agree to a little something yourself” I was expecting a lecture of some sort so I was already prepared. ‘”So what do I have to do now?” I asked, leaning forward on my elbows.
“Just open this,” Dad answered, producing a small white box. He gave a mysterious smile. I Hesitated a moment before removing the curly pink ribbon. I slowly opened the lid and saw a beautiful silver bracelet. But not just any bracelet. It was a charm bracelet. And they weren’t just any charms. They were gemstones, small but gorgeous. A dozen dainty charms dangled gently. “Wow.” I didn’t know what else to say. I wasn’t expecting this at all.
“Now you have to understand this isn’t just any bracelet,” Mom informed me.
“I know” I said. “It is so beautiful!” I studied it closer.
There were six small charms alternating with six tinier ones. The smaller ones were a deep blue. Sapphires, I guessed. And the other six were each different. One appeared to be just a rock, one was pink, a white one, a red one, green, and…was that a diamond!?
“This charm bracelet is symbolic” Dad explained, leaning in closer to study it with me. “It represents you and your purity. This is what will guide you through your dating relationships. Your mother and I can only tell you what’s right. We can’t make you believe it yourself. Hopefully, this will.”
I looked up solemnly. “I’m Listening.”
“This represents the first time you hold a guy’s hand”
Mom said, pointing to the gray one. “It’s just a piece of polished granite Seemingly cheap, yes, but it’s still a part of your bracelet. This is pink quartz.”
Then she gently rubbed the next one between her fingers.
“It represents your first kiss”
“This green one is an emerald,” Dad continued. “This is your first boyfriend. The pearl is the first time you say ‘I love you’ to a man other than me.”
I giggled. This was so amazing. The ruby stands for your first engagement. And the diamond represents the first time you say ‘I do’” Mom finished.
After letting it all sink in I cleared my emotion-clogged throat. “What do the six tiny sapphires stand for?” I asked.
Those are to remind you how beautiful and valuable you are to us and to God, ” Dad replied. “Now here’s the hitch in all this, the one and only rule you’ll ever have to follow when it comes to dating. ”
Only one rule. Sounded good. But little did I know…
“Whenever you give one of these actions of love – a kiss, an ‘I love you,’ a hand to hold – you also have to give the recipient the gem to match.
I must’ve misunderstood. “I have to give him the gem?”
“You have to give it to him” Mom restated.
I was silent for a while. I thought they must be joking. But they weren’t even thinking of cracking a smile. “But Daddy!” I suddenly shrieked. “These are insanely expensive! I can’t just give them away!”He gave a soft, loving chuckle. “Did you hear what you just said?”I thought about it.
“Baby, your purity, your heart, they’re far more valuable than a few little rocks. If you can’t find it in your heart to give away your little charms, I don’t think you should be giving away the things they represent.”
I could feel my insides melting, ready to gush out my tear ducts. On the one hand, it made me feel valuable and precious. But on the other, it made me furious. It made no sense. But it would.
A few weeks after that night, I was hanging out with my friends at the beach. Chad wouldn’t swim because I wouldn’t swim. I was more interested in reading than getting caked with sand, and he was more interested in sitting with me than swimming with his buddies. He was sweet. He was cute. And he tried to hold my hand.
I was thrilled for a nanosecond when a certain peice of ugly granite flashed through my mind and made me move out of his reach. I was severely annoyed – annoyed at my parents, annoyed at my bracelet-turned-handcuffs, but most of all annoyed at myself. I was letting a little rock dominate my romantic life.
I furiously glared at it during the whole embarrassing walk to the bathhouse But then God hit me upside the head with a shocking epiphany. I couldn’t give up my little chunk of granite. It was a part of my bracelet, which in a sense made it a part of me. I wouldn’t be whole without it. It wasn’t a priceless gem, yet it was still valuable. It made sense after that.
Kevin came along eventually. We had fun. We hung out a lot. I thought I might love him. I thought I might tell him so. I thought of my pearl. It turned out that I didn’t love him as much as I thought I did.
So my parents had been right. They couldn’t make me believe the things they wanted me to believe. So they let God and my bracelet do the word instead. Among the four of them I figured out how valuable I was. How valuable my purity was.
How not valuable guys were who were just wasting my time and emotions. If they weren’t in it for the whole bracelet, why should they get one part of it?
Nate. He thought my bracelet was awesome. So he never tried to hold my hand. He never tried to kiss me. But he asked me to marry him.
I never knew that so many years of torture could amount to so much happiness. I’d thought it was silly. I’d thought it was overrated. But now, I have never been more glad of anything in my life. As I gave my husband the charm bracelet in its entirety. I wondered why I had found it so hard to hang on to those little rocks when it was so amazing to give them all to the man I truly love.
But it didn’t end there, now our daughter wears it…