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Stories Before Bed Feel Safe

It's finally quiet for the day--if you don't count some snoring I hear from, well, never mind about that. The kids are supposed to be in bed by 8:30 on school nights, but somehow, it stre-e-e-e-e-e-etches out for 2 hours. There could be tickles, snuggles, stories, prayers, kisses, tucking in, songs, reading together, more kisses, questions about the day, and having to get in the exactly perfect position before Kris or I can say the 20th and final "good night" for the night.

I don't plan for those two hours. Somehow I think they'll just go to bed, and I can finish whatever task there is to do (that usually can just wait for the morrow). It can be irksome when I'm being a jerk.

Most nights, though, I can see it's part of what makes Kal and Kara feel safe. They are loved. They are wanted. They are an irreplaceable part of our family.

Somehow, they got to bed before the kitchen was cleaned up for the night. Oh, well. That didn't take too long to set in order. Thank you, Mr. Dishwasher--not Kris, but the lovely, stainless steel magic box that cleans our dishes every night.

Lest you think I'm putting down my husband, I'm not. He very often plans and cooks the meals that we have. He's enjoyed experimenting with cooking in recent years, which has coincided nicely with my business picking up.

As an aside, I remember my dad reading to us at night when I was little. I'm the third oldest of twelve siblings, and my earliest memories of nighttime stories are from being about 3-4 years old. Dad read Pilgrim's Progress aloud to us then and multiple times throughout my childhood.

He read many portions of the Bible to us; Mom would also do that during the daytime.

Dad read other books to us such as Patrick McManus's collections, Sholom Aleichem, the Anguished English books, and many others.

Those stories and all the conversation that came from those family reading times spurred a love of reading in all of us. We have a wealth of fond memories of the love and laughter around our family table.

Now, it's my husband's and my turn to pass on that love, laughter, and love of reading to our children.

Note: My dad, Howard Slack, has done voice recordings of his reading those beloved stories from my childhood and has put them on a website here: .


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