Saturday, August 07, 2010

Routine And Following Protocol. AA Style...

You could set your watch to AA's bedtime routine. I'm not sure if it's her personality coming through or ours or a combination of the two (three). It's a repeated ritual followed night after night with only the slightest of variations depending on Mom or Dad having the honors.

If I have the honors, we potty, brush the teeth, (an often times loud experience I will explain at some later date) slip into our pj's, hug and kiss Mom night-night and head off to bed. Mom or I will have already turned on her atlas globe with the light inside. (Thank you Craigslist.)
Routine continues as AA starts her "music box" with the ever present Bach CD, closes her bedroom door and turns on the Turtle nightlight showering her ceiling with stars and a crescent moon. She has 3 colors to choose from. It might as well be one. Green. Turtle coming on is my cue to turn off the globe light. Protocol rules.

I love the next part, scooping her into my arms our voices blend into a raucous rendition of Rockabye Baby. Mom's version is so soft and sweet and yet with me AA delights in our singing entirely off key and LOUD! Song completed, she uses her beanbag chair to climb her way into bed. Turtle gets a final adjustment, a quick swig from the ever present water bottle on her night stand and we are finally ready to say our prayers.

Which is what prompted this post. I'm just slow getting to it... In the beginning, my prayer time with AA was very much a straight forward proposition:

God is good.
God is great.
Thank you God.

Mom's prayer time has always been much better. More detailed. More loving strokes of the head and back. Soft words of love and comfort. More linger time.
I tended more towards the "I've been with you all day, it's time for bed. Good night." Well, compared to Mom's, it seemed that way to me. And I'm sure AA thought the same.
With Mom's influence fully in force, Alyzabeth and my prayer time has evolved into a more "family friendly/inclusive" experience. As Mom would say, borrowing from Martha Stewart, it's a good thing.

God is good.
God is great.
Thank you God for blessing.....

And here the list grows long. It's a great list though. I love hearing the names AA calls out. Family names, names of her friends, names I leave the room wondering, who?
She surprised me the other night. A pleasant surprise. She asked God to bless her China family. It's a conversation we're having more and more. It's a regular on the prayer list now. As it should be.

When prayers finished earlier this week I complimented her on what a particularly good prayer she had given. It really was a good one. I think she must have gone through the newspaper and pulled names we had so many. Yet most impressive was her question following my praise.
"Dad, what is a bad prayer?"
"When we forget to pray is bad, I replied, but God loves all our prayers".
Hey, I was working under the gun. It was the best I could do. Appearing to be satisfied with my answer, a final kiss sealed my departure.

Bedtime prayers. Little routines. AA protocols. My life. My family.
God is good.
God is great.
Thank you God...


Catherine said...

It's fun to hear how your day with your precious little one draws to an end. Heh...gotta love the raucous version of 'Rock a Bye Baby'. Can kinda imagine it...and it makes me smile!

Prayer time is the sweetest and I can't wait for the day Hannah can offer suggestions of people to pray for. I have introduced prayer time into her little life too and sometimes it's during the day and just a quick one. Yesterday we prayed together in the car (Thankfully mommy kept it together without tears) as I took her to daycare and left for the very first time. Nothing sweeter than the little ah-men coming from the back seat!

Such wonderful values you are instilling in AA at a very young age.

Number 6 and no more counting! said...

U made my day! You are all just lovely, sweet people. thank you, for sharing this post.


Dita said...

I can hear her now...going through the newspaper...ha hahahaha.

I'll bet you have to contain yourself mightily not to crack up.

Now that is some routine! Are you for hire? My kids could sure use a routine like that!

Miss stopping by sure doesn't mean I'm not thinking about my favorite Floridians!


Wanda said...

Loved this post. Gave me a big ol smile this morning. Thanks!