What are you packing in their lunches?

enjoy

// Have you ever noticed that people don’t need to be reminded to worry every day? Or to be afraid? Or to be angry? Those things come quite naturally, don’t they?

I don’t know about you, but I often find that I need to be reminded to ENJOY every day. I need that extra kick-in-the-butt to turn my attention FROM my problems to the simple fact that “I’m alive” and “the sun is shining.”

Some years ago, a friend of ours was traveling through South Africa and happened to preach at our church on Sunday morning. He preached a profoundly simple sermon called “What are you packing in your kid’s lunch today?” which radically challenged how I wake up and approach my days.  

The challenge was raised… are you sending your kids to school with a sandwich and an apple, and a good dose of anger and negativity? Or perhaps some self-doubt, depression, and criticism? How about stress and insecurity?

Whoaaaaaa! Seriously? I have the power to do that?

YES, yes I do! By the manner in which I wake up and speak to my family, I HAVE THE POWER TO SHIFT THE ATMOSPHERE.

So, that started a beautiful new habit. I started packing my kids’ lunches with little cocktail napkins and hand-scrawled notes that said things like

I love you!

I believe in you!

Good luck on your test!

You rock!

You can DO this!

ENJOY your day!

// What a beautiful change that made to the enjoyment factor of their school days. In fact, I remember one of them coming home and saying, “Mom, do you HAVE to send those notes? All my friends want to read them all the time!”

Haha! How cool is that? EVERYONE is hungry for encouragement and Words of Life! Everyone needs to be reminded to expect the best out of every day, and to ENJOY each moment!

I hadn’t realized just what an impact my simple love-notes had made in the lives of my kids until earlier this year. I was sending a care package to our eldest daughter in Australia, but just before I was supposed to hand it off to the generous friends who were going to carry it to her, I remembered that I hadn’t written a love note yet!

Oh no! Now what? I was in the car and had nothing with me.

I quickly scratched a message from my heart to hers using a tiny little Pitch’n Putt pencil on a crumpled McDonald’s napkin that I found in the glove compartment. Written hastily on the steering wheel, it was a sincere expression of

Love, Encouragement, and Words of Life from her mom!

And it was my crumpled little ♥ note that made her cry the most when she finally opened up the package! Everyone needs a reminder that

You are loved! You can do this! Enjoy your day! Click To Tweet

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Every Friday, I join an inspiring group of writers to write for FIVE MINUTES on a one-word prompt. No editing. No revising. Just WRITE. This week, the word was ENJOY!

// indicates the start and stop of the timer.

For more information on Five Minute Friday, check out Kate Motaung’s site!

5 Min Friday

22 replies
  1. Wendy
    Wendy says:

    What a lovely idea for the lunch boxes. My first time doing this challenge today but I think it could become a habit. 🙂

    Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      Hi Wendy! So nice to have you join us! Yes, FMF is a lovely habit to develop. One of my favourite times of the week. I’m so glad you stopped by. I’ll go read your post too.
      ENJOY your weekend! 🙂

      Reply
  2. Lesley
    Lesley says:

    I agree, it’s funny that we don’t need to be reminded to worry or be afraid but we do need to be reminded to enjoy our day and to be reminded that we are loved. I love the idea of putting notes of encouragement in your kids’ lunch boxes. It’s amazing how a few small words of encouragement can make such a big difference.

    Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      It’s true. Although I no longer make their lunches for them, I still try to find reasons to write them little notes. We never outgrow encouragement.
      Hey, Lesley… I appreciate you! Enjoy your day! 🙂

      Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      So sweet, Andrew. I’m sure it means a whole lot to her.
      BTW… Thanks for always stopping by here on Fridays. I love seeing your name in my comments box and I don’t take it lightly!
      Have a great weekend.

      Reply
  3. Mandy Hughes
    Mandy Hughes says:

    Oh, Shauna! You make me smile. It’s been too long since I’ve written a little love note for my kids. Thank you for this sweet reminder that we all need words of encouragement. It’s so funny…I posted earlier about the mundane of life and packing lunches everyday was my metaphor. Grateful to have a new light shone on the matter!

    Reply
  4. Jeanne Takenaka
    Jeanne Takenaka says:

    Well, I’m busted. I had an altercation with my oldest (13) at the breakfast table this morning. I so need your reminder to send them off with words of life and love. Thank you for this reminder, Shauna!

    Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      Haha, then it’s a good thing there’s a support group for us moms who blow it in the morning. 🙂 Grace grace, my friend. Love covers a multitude of mistakes too.

      Reply
  5. Sylvia R
    Sylvia R says:

    I used to teach elementary school, and I loved to see when parents slipped love notes into their kids lunch boxes. The kids did, too, you could tell by their beaming all over. It’s a beautiful thing to enjoy!

    Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      It’s true, isn’t it? They can receive a ton of compliments from friends and fellow students, but Words of Life given by a parent (or a discerning teacher) are extra special. God bless you for your years of sowing. Teachers are amazing people.
      Thanks for visiting! Have a lovely weekend.

      Reply
  6. Christina Hubbard
    Christina Hubbard says:

    What a fabulous legacy you are leaving for you kids! I used to do it and it somehow became a thing of the past. I need to do it again no matter what they say (or don’t) about it. That sorta stuff can change lives in small ways, as proof with your daughter.

    Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      Yeah, I hear ya. There were seasons that I would stop doing it too (just so it wouldn’t get too familiar), but then I’d notice the change in their behaviour. More moody, more insecure, etc. I think, as with most things, we need to listen to Holy Spirit as to when and where and what. But isn’t that the key to everything? Keeping in-step with Holy Spirit.
      Have a lekker weekend! 🙂

      Reply
  7. Lydia
    Lydia says:

    Had a lump in my throat and burning eyes reading the bit about writing that little love note to Rae xxx

    Reply
    • Shauna Blaak
      Shauna Blaak says:

      Awww, Lyds. I love seeing your name in my comments. Yes, we miss her terribly, but I’m grateful to God that she’s doing what she is supposed to be doing. Goodbyes are never easy.
      P.S. I miss you too! The Blaaks could use some Weyer-time.

      Reply
  8. Mary Hood
    Mary Hood says:

    Yes! And reading posts are filling our lunchboxes. That is awesome! Thank you for precious tidbits I can graze from all day long. Visiting fmf#60.

    Reply
  9. Debby
    Debby says:

    You got me a bit teary there Shauna. So sweet. That’s something I enjoy about texting with our grown kids who live in different cities.

    Reply

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