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Chicken Poop, and what Sunflowers are Made of

Yesterday, as the sun peeked through our windows while breakfast was being eaten, we noticed a splash of yellow out the window.  One of the sunflowers the boys had planted and tended bloomed, fresh yellow petals, greeting the morning–it was here!

“Boys!”  I whispered.  “Your sunflowers, they are blooming, let’s go see!”

As we walked outside, the boys’ eyes widened in sleepy amazement as Finley whispered,

“So beautiful, mama…”

After smelling it Finley noted, “Mama, it’s filled with Sunshine…and Jesus, in ‘der”

“Oh wow, that’s pretty special,” I smiled.

Recently, especially since Elijah started receiving some OT (From the cutest lady, ever!) he has been so much more able to play how he wants, to focus on tasks instead of seeking sensory input due to so little touch from his time in the orphanage.

He enjoys helping just like big brother and sister take care of our plants, focusing on caring for them just the way they need.

“Look how cool I am, ma!!”

Yesterday on our to-do list was go to the beach with our friends hosting Ukrainian orphans (to die for cute), buy a banana tree and use our chicken poop to help fertilize our cherimoya and guava seedlings.

When I was living in Fiji with a missionary family who built a huge farm to help women escape sex-trafficking and other forms of sexual abuse, teaching them to raise their children in a healthy environment, we worked day and night to help their property become more self sustaining.  We actually bought chicken poop to fertilize the hundreds of fruit and avocado seeds we were planting.

Now the kids and I can collect our own free fertilizer right in our coop, our baby trees are thriving thanks to our chickens.  We love to see thriving.

My little Koala baby

The boys favorite thing to do, other than dig and stuff their faces, and well, get dirty is to water with the sprayer.  I think it makes them feel like big boys, and even if they eventually start aiming at the fence, it’s actually still so helpful, and I tell them how good it is for the plants, which makes them feel so important, as a look of renewed purpose fills their faces, thumb on the nozzle.

Even if it takes us longer to get the job done, we love letting our kids work alongside us to help.  When they dump dirt on the sprinkler we’re trying to install, when they stomp on the baby geranium and say “I help you dada, I help you mama!” we laugh it off and thank them, hoping their sweet, helpful spirit lasts a lifetime, and flowers are a dime a dozen.

 Papa and Finley digging for the new banana tree.

Baby Jasper is officially a wild jungle cat.  He crouches behind shady bushes as the chickens peck at the ground, then leaping from the dark–pounces out, running circles around the flapping chickens, making them go where he wants, delighting the children in a cloud of squawking and feathers, the kids filling the air with giggles.

The little orange kitty can scale the tallest of trees, then lazily lick his paws from the top.  I haven’t held him in weeks.

In fact, the only one who can catch him…

is Maria–the tender nurturer.

“God reminded me how beautiful we all are to Him, after all, we were created in His own image, and He looks at me, at you, in all our sweat and dirt and brokenness, and says, 
“I choose you. You are beautiful.” 
-Katie Davis, Kisses from Katie
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  • Jill - addingaburden.com August 15, 2013, 11:38 pm

    I love how peacefully you parent your kids. Inspires me.

  • Sharon August 20, 2013, 10:55 pm

    Thank you for yet another precious blog entry. I am sharing your quote at the end on Facebook, in case someone I know needs that message. Then again…. who doesn’t?