Ok, ok, I make a lot of mistakes as a parent. Yes, a lot of them. And one of them is that I try to relate complicated biblical and social messages to our daily life. Ok, maybe the problem isn’t that I do this–it’s that I don’t do it well.
Take this morning…
The kiddos and I are driving to school and practicing their songs for the Children’s Christmas Cantata coming up in a few weeks when the Cowboy asks what a “manger” is.
(Hint to parents–this is the perfect time to change the subject.)
Well, honey, it’s a hay rack. Like Hokie’s hay rack, but made out of wood.
So naturally he asked why baby Jesus was in a hay rack. Now, you’re thinking “Oh, wow! Perfect opportunity to give the Christmas story again.” Well, let me tell you what you should be thinking…CHANGE THE SUBJECT!
After my well-practiced 5 minute nativity story, involving every barnyard animal I could relate to us, the next question…naturally…”Was there hay in it?”
“Sure, there was, honey. It was a barn. Isn’t there hay in our hay racks?”
Oh, you foolish parent…
“Why was there hay in it? Hay is food. What if the animals tried to eat baby Jesus? Hay is itchy. Why wasn’t it straw? Straw is for beds. Hay is food. You don’t play in animals’ food. Why would they put a baby in a hay rack?”
Why, oh, why didn’t I change. the. subject?
Of course the Ladybug kindly chimed in with “The song says “hay.” That explains it, right? I think we’re going with that one. The Cowboy contemplated that for a good minute and a half.
Then she added, “Mama, what if a cow sneezed on him like Molly does?”