You might remember, if you've been around for a while, that back when Bubba turned 18, we held a special "Blessing Ceremony" for him at church. It was a time of love and fellowship, where the men in his life gathered to pray for him and to bless him as he moved from his life as a young adult to an adult. You can read the full details at the original post, but essentially the ladies and children of the family stood on one side of a bridge while the men waited on another. I said a few words recalling his childhood and ways in which he had blessed his family, his siblings gave him hugs and flowers, and he crossed the bridge to stand with the men as they gathered around him and offered advice, prayers, and congratulations. Then, we all went inside and had a nice meal and had fun looking over the photo albums with pictures from his childhood in them, reminiscing about good old times and looking forward to the promise of a bright and exciting future.
The idea of having a Blessing Ceremony did not originate with us. Hubby and I attended a seminar hosted by a favorite family-integrated church located in a city too far away for us to attend on a weekly basis, but close enough to go to when they hold special events. The talk we attended was hosted by the Moore family who have a ministry called Daughters4God. We learned about the power of words and the importance of blessing our children, especially our sons, who will someday be the leaders of their own families. We also learned about another idea...a complimentary way to bless our daughters, but with a different emphasis...this idea is called Lady Day.
Joy Moore found that when the time came to talk to her girls about the facts of life, she wanted to do more than just hand them a book and let them figure things out on their own. She wanted her daughters to understand what a blessing and a privilege it is to be female, and to instruct them about the different challenges and stages they will go through as they become a woman. Her way of managing this was to write a series of letters to her daughters, which she shared with each one during a special day out one-on-one as the time came for each one to hear about the changes to come.
At the time, our girls were too young to even begin to think about having to plan a "Lady Day," but a month or so ago, it became apparent that it was going to be time to take Ladybug out and have the first of our special times together.
Ladybug's 9th birthday...
Ever since we moved to our new hometown, Ladybug and her special friend, Miss S., have been going out to tea with their mama's on Ladybug's birthday at our favorite antique mall/tea room. That has always been a special girl time, and a year or so ago, on her birthday, I read a special book on being God's little princess to the girls while we waited for our lunch to arrive, and gave Ladybug the first of her charms on a new silver charm bracelet...a crown so she'd remember she was a daughter of The King.
They've grown up so much...Ladybug's 8th birthday.
Since Miss S. has been such an important part of our lives (and her mum, too), we decided to ask them out on our special Lady Day. We met up on a beautifully sunny and warm afternoon and went to lunch at our favorite local dining spot, Rosemary and Wine, which offers delicious raspberry sweet tea and divine Quiche Lorraine served with salad, with a background of tunes from Sinatra and other classic crooners. We ate companionably, then talked to the girls about some of the changes they could expect over the next several years, and also about modesty. We spoke about some of their most special and precious character traits, and we also talked about how sometimes life can be tough and we will need to really pray, and talk to mom, during those times when we are feeling a bit under the weather as things change.
We didn't go into great depth, as we are saving that for a private talk later, so I saved the charm I bought for Ladybug's bracelet to give to her then...it's a butterfly. Instead I gave her a pair of small pearl clip on earrings to wear when we go on our "Lady Dates" or out to tea.
Ladybug is a real sweetheart, and loves to dress up with frills, hairbows, and jewelry...but I especially like that she can be all girly one minute and then dress like a cowgirl and shimmy up a tree the next! She's an original and really growing into her own. Helpful, kind, compassionate, organized, creative, eager, and smart. She's a go-getter who is becoming a charming young lady right before my eyes...too quickly.
We took a walk after our meal and headed over to the local antique store where Miss S. and Ladybug were gifted with a Beanie Baby from the gracious proprietoress. She loved the girl's manners and rewarded them when she heard it was a special day with a gift from her heart. I found two old readers to buy to add to our collection, and Mrs. L. found some antique crocheting hooks she couldn't pass up.
We thoroughly enjoyed our time together on a perfectly gorgeous day. The flowers added to our pleasure by brightening every nook and cranny as we walked along the quaint streets of our town. I highly recommend having some sort of "Lady Day" with your daughter (s), even if they've already learned "the facts of life." It will make a wonderful memory for each of the girls as they look back on their childhood...at least I hope it will. It was certainly a wonderful memory for me.
Our girls need to know they are special and we want to draw them close to us so that we will have their hearts as they grow up. We want them to trust us and feel able to come to us with anything, and we want to be there to help them as their hearts grow closer to Christ and they separate from us eventually to fully rely on Him...and someday, perhaps, a Prince Charming of their own.
Walking into their future...best friends.