Books & Babysitting: Part 3

As we learned from Ezra the other day, finding a comfortable reading space is important when trying to get into a good book. And as we’ve also seen, books make babysitting better! Here’s one of our favorite Gracepoint Berkeley triplets happily reading her book. It really is a fine line between a truck and a chair, you know? I can relate a bit with her; the car has always been one of my favorite reading spaces!

Perhaps we need hands-free driving laws for playtime!

How about you? Where do you do your best reading? What are your favorite reading spaces?

Being “All There” When Reading with or to Your Kids

In our go-go-go, “Always On” kind of society, having real quality time with the people we care about most in our lives is a rare thing. Studies show that our kids are being shortchanged the most in all of this. Sadly, they are growing up in a world where to expect face-to-face conversation that is unhindered and uninterrupted by devices, even or especially with their parents, is considered “too much” and unrealistic.

Before I get too carried away with this topic — I want to save it for a review of an amazing book I’m reading right now about this very issue — I will do the “picture is worth a thousand words” thing. I’ll even throw in a video, so that must be worth a few more words! 

There’s a way in which we can turn reading to our kids into a task, something good we know we should do but only one in a long list if things we need to “get done.” We might even have our phones out and check them on the sly. But our kids notice everything. And when we do this, we forfeit a wonderful way to relate with and have a conversation with our kids, and reinforcing this way of always being “somewhere else,” even with our kids, whom we love very much.

Truly reading with or to your kids is an activity that requires a lot of care, wouldn’t you say? (I’m finding a way to connect each week’s photo challenge to reading!) Here’s a picture of Pastor Ed Kang reading to the kiddos during he and Kelly’s recent visit down to our Gracepoint Riverside & Irvine churches.

Photo and video credit to Kelly Kang, who you can tell from the video is trying to get some love from Kaylee on behalf of Anna. 🙂

And here is a video of the actual “slightly” paraphrased reading from Shel Silverstein’s classic The Giving Tree.

The Giving Tree – as read by Uncle Pastor Ed from hemilykim on Vimeo.

I know we all live busy lives, but when you set aside some time to spend reading with or to your kids, I want to encourage you to be *ALL THERE*. That means you’ll have to put away your devices and open yourself to the possibility of some conversation! I promise, your email and text messages will still be there afterwards. 🙂

Do you have any fond memories of reading with your kids? Or being read to by your parents, or others? How about thoughts on The Giving Tree…do you think it deserves all the hype? Share your thoughts!

Books & Babysitting (Part 2)

Who said that multi-tasking is a myth? 🙂 (Photobomb cred to Mike, who is probably talking with the other Element staff about the high school Friday night about to start.) 

Last week I said that books make babysitting better, and that was in the context of reading to children. I’m pretty sure Christine isn’t reading aloud to this little baby, but it still holds true. Happy baby gets pushed around in the stroller, and happy babysitter gets to read! It’s a win, win.