Who is the Best Kid?

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Finally, it's September 1st, the Day of Knowledge (as it is called here in Russia)! School starts officially today. But it falls on a weekend, so I might just as well relax. And it's not as if I have a first-grader or a graduating student to get all hyped up.

We went to church. I didn't go for the free massage that some loving brothers and sisters offer, but opted to go home instead, took out my guitar and changed the strings. By the time I was done, it was time to whip up something for dinner.

Dinner was great. I felt like a Big Momma, even with my 4' 11'' height, surrounded by my fast-growing children. Everybody was contributing to the conversation that the kids started themselves with the topic "Who is the Best Kid?" Each one has an opinion. Needless to say, each of them wanted me to answer the question.

And I know my answer. Wild Bear is the best eleven-year-old kid. He is very thoughtful and funny. Miss Angelika is the best nine-year-old kid. She is very responsible and highly motivated. Li'l Kitty is the kindest and most loving eight-year-old girl. While Roxy the Boss has the most beautiful laugh, an independent and creative four-year-old. Each is the best in who I know them to be.

Miss Angelika's response? "Mom, please tell us who is the BEST KID. I won't get mad or be offended."

And I replied, "I don't know any other answer because this is what I know and this is the truth. You're all the BEST."

They looked at each other with smiles on their faces and proceeded to tell each other their strengths and what the others are good at. I just sat back and enjoyed my evening tea as I listened to them.

While my son was doing the washing up and I was tidying up the table of its constant clutter, my mind went on overdrive that I had to stop a few times to write down my thoughts. I don't know if they are important, I just think that writing down some of my thoughts when I can, may be useful someday. Haha.

I thought about how it is that it's very rare here in Russia to give special recognitions at school. At first I thought it to be very un-motivating. But now as I think about it, I like the value of school, not as a racecourse, but a place to learn and gain understanding whether one is slow or fast. Not a racecourse in the sense that someone is first and another is last. I've seen how in our modern schools, one kid gets all the special recognition, the medals and all, while others don't even have one. I wonder, how many of those medal owners fare well in the real world when they become adults? And how about those who think themselves as nothing special?

When it was time to kiss my children good night, I happened to pick up the book of Daniel to read to them. (Read the first chapter of Daniel.) Daniel and his friends were trained for three years under the Babylonian school. The king, himself, found them the best among the crop. I found it a good opportunity to motivate my school children to depend on God and do their best this school year. And when it was time to pray, I prayed that they will choose to be responsible students, caring friends, be respectful and considerate of others, and brave in doing what is right.

Then I came across this Should We Tell Children They're "Special"?--- Helping children understand their strengths without breeding arrogance.

And I continue to learn. What have you learned today?

All the best to the new school year!

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