Summer Snippets: The Most Important Thing In Parenting

Summer Snippets: The Most Important Thing In Parenting

This week’s inspiration comes from one of my own – my darling granddaughter Blakely Faye who turned two years old this week! I hope her smile prompted one from you.

As most of you know, my pastor father offered words of wisdom to many. He had a unique way of listening with his heart and always seemed to know just the right thing to say.

In my youth, I remember listening to his talks about the ups and downs of parenting in our church’s family life programs. Years later, after two years of parenting my firstborn, a willful but loving child who kept me on guard and challenged 90% of the time, I asked for some personal instruction.

“So Dad, what’s the most important thing? After all you’ve learned and taught about parenting, what advice would you give me?”

“Enjoy them, BB,” he said simply. Once more, the man who counseled many and lost his only son gave me more special words to live. “Always remember to enjoy your children.”

Through the years I’ve tried to honor that advice. From those terrible twos and toddler timeouts; to the teenaged shenanigans, prom dramas, and the mercurial nature of competitive sports; to that tricky period we skate through where you watch your child date the wrong one and then right one while keeping your mouth shut so they can discover it all on their own.

Then they leave.

As they should.

And you put on a huge plastic smile and rev yourself up with manufactured excitement as the pangs of empty prick your heart and slowly settle into your nest, redefining life as never before.

Through it all, I’ve found plenty of moments to enjoy.

So today I share with you this moment to enjoy with me.

“Nee-nah!” Blakely Faye screamed into the phone when my face popped up on the phone during our birthday FaceTime call. I was supposed to be called, “Nana B,” but Blakely quickly shortened it to just “Nana.” Then she decided a few weeks ago that my name was “Nay-nah.” And now I suppose I’m “Nee-nah!”

But when it’s delivered with a smile like this one, who cares? I am enjoying every moment.

How about you? What moments are you choosing to enjoy? Tell me about it. I’d love to know.

My best – always,

Becky  (Neehah! Note the new name!)

This column was first published here on

P. S. Madison is adjusting well to her day program and residential program. Yesterday she went on an outing to Patapsco State Park! So exciting. Thanks for your thoughts and prayers. Hope you can support Pathfinders for Autism in our annual Pathfinders for Autism’s Run Wild for Autism at the Baltimore Zoo on Sunday September 24. Then, mosey on down to see me at the Baltimore Book Festival. I would LOVE to see you!

P.S.S. Yay! 42 reviews on Thank you so much! Please keep them coming—still so important for the life of my book.

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