I don't know exactly when it happened. And I don't know if my heart was or would have ever been ready for the sweet moment of realizing one of my littles is not so little anymore. Saturday mornings are always some of my favorites with my kiddos. On this particular day I remember forcing myself to get out of bed. It was one of those mornings that I really wanted to hide under the covers and shut out the world, butI had promised the kids that I would be in the village that morning and keeping my word is something that is so important to them. So on this morning I forced myself to walk to the village all the while telling myself that I would just make it a quick visit. Run down and say some "good mornings" and then head back home.
When I arrived in the village I was greeted (or practically barreled over..) by the kiddos who were pretty excited for a morning that was free to play and explore. Rose quickly informed me that she wouldn't be ready to leave right away (there went my quick visit plans) because she was going to cook some rice. I had to hold in the laughter because the idea of Rose (7yrs old) cooking rice was just too much. I don't remember if the kids pushed me down to a spot on the ground to sit or if I just gave in to the reality of "this will be awhile", but sitting down was one of the best decisions I made. As I sat there I watched as my "baby" girl moved in and out of the kitchen space. The other girls jumped in to help and before long one was off gathering water, another sticks and charcoal for the fire (because why wouldn't they use real fire to play with!), and one was sent to get oil and salt from one of the older women. I laughed because I knew there was NO way these little girls were going to get a portion of the oil and salt and yet they did. I was in constant shock as I watched the girls cooking. They fanned the coals just like the older women do and they mashed the garlic and onions like every other woman I know does. When I squinted my eyes really tightly it was like the Lord was giving me a glimpse into these sweet girls lives ten or fifteen years from now. My little girls were no longer little and instead I saw little women sitting in front of me.
The amount of rice made was no more than two cooked cups but you would have thought it was an entire pot full. Spoon fulls of rice got dished out to every one who helped and even the littler kids got a portion. I even got my fair portion of the rice and was super surprised at just how good it was:) I secretly wished I had paid more attention to everything they were putting in that pot because it was that good.
This sweet morning in the village reminded me just how much my kiddos are really watching everything around them. They are growing up and these moments I have with them are going much too quickly. I'm so thankful that they pulled me into staying longer than I had planned and that in watching them play I felt the Lord really impressing on my heart just how special and unique each of them are. And how these moments I have with them are so much more than what they sometimes seem like in the day to day.