Good Friday morning ...
She calls herself a "dinosaur."
She doesn't mean it in a self-derogatory way ... just that she is old-fashioned, perhaps not on the same page with many women of today ... and one who does and sees things differently than most twenty-first century women.
She is the wife of one husband ... remaining his devoted companion and mother of his four children through multiple decades of his challenging career. In her mind, it was much more than "standing by her man" ... more the fulfillment of her commitment made on the day of her wedding to the man she would love for the rest of her life.
She had been a stay-at-home mom while raising her children. She spent her days, in large part, with her children before and after school. She did not hover over their homework or special assignments. This was their responsibility. She disciplined with the pull of an ear, a squeeze on the knee or sometimes with the devastating scowling, glare of a displeased mother. She taught her children manners, respect for others, honesty in little matters and simple faith in Jesus.
During those years she learned how to sew and smock and knit and quilt. She learned how to cook and bake and can and freeze and preserve and took up cutting the hair of her family. She baked homemade breads, made pizza from scratch, harvested, graded and canned or froze her vegetables from the family garden. She developed her own "special" chocolate chip cookie recipe, welcomed by all who have ever had a sampling. She dug frozen vegetables, fruits and meats out of her basement freezer to prepare for evening meals.
She prepared breakfast every morning for her family of six ... rotating a weekly menu from which any member could tell exactly what day of the week it was. She likewise prepared a sit-down family dinner each evening, served promptly at the same 5:30 hour each day. She washed and ironed clothes and made lunches for each child until they were able to take on that responsibility for themselves.
She developed the gift of hospitality, hosting as many as forty dinner guests in her own home, preparing each course in her own kitchen, in the early days without even a Kitchen Aid. She learned flower arranging, choosing to fashion her own arrangements and selecting blooms from her own cutting garden to shape into gifts for others.
Today her children are grown and have their own families, but she still prepares her husband breakfast and dinner each day and shares those meals in quiet conversation as bookends to each day. She still washes, irons and repairs her husband's clothes ... when possible even hanging them outside on a clothesline to "air dry" as her first choice for "dry cleaning." She still makes meals from scratch (though now less often), bakes a weekly sweet treat and prefers to stay in and work in her own home, which serves as an always-ready testimony to her devotion to family.
Yes, she calls herself a "dinosaur" ... simply because there are fewer and fewer of her type. But I call her my wife and, as you can easily see, I am a VERY spoiled man and can thankfully say I have been so privileged for 52 years next Tuesday!!!
Sometimes, like today, I have to pinch myself to know its real and, on this occasion at least, I felt like letting the world know!
[With apologies to the one I love dearest and best and who will, no doubt, experience embarrassment upon learning she is the subject of this Musing. But she had to know it would happen one day!]
"A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life ... Her children rise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her. Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all. Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the lord is to be praised. Give her the reward she has earned, and let words bring her praise at the city gate." [Proverbs 31:10-12, 28-31]
Have a great weekend in the Lord ...