One Pink Toothbrush

Welcome to One Pink Toothbrush, where I will be posting moments from my days as a mum and as a wife. Funny moments, messy moments, thoughtful moments, teary moments.... and hopefully using each moment to see what God might be saying.

Saturday, 21 September 2013


A couple of years ago a friend generously bought me an iPad for my birthday. She wanted to read more about the 'ol pink toothbrush, and therefore she said I needed to write more. I'll never forget the husband's face as I unwrapped it, and he was quick to appreciate the "what's mine is yours" part of married life. My iPad has been a wonderful source of entertainment for the family. The boys have found village building games, battle games, and running quickly games. Games with birds dressed as Star Wars characters and games with clans who clash. They're all the same game but with different characters as far as this mum can see. We've added some maths games and a copy of Warhorse, because boys do seem to love combining the technical side of life with learning. And then there's the husband's 'Garage Band', where he can live out his youth by pretending he's in a band called No Direction or Undecided or something similar. He plays every instrument in the band; such talent.

The iPad has also been a great training tool. We've used it to teach about time wasting, priorities and idols. As well as the classic lesson "Screens do not mean you can ignore your family". The iPad is regularly used to teach selflessness, rather than taking turns. We tend not to go for 'fair' in this house. Instead we remind the little people about Jesus' selfless love, and how the cross wasn't fair, but tipped heavily in our favour. However, the iPad's biggest training ground was for me and the husband.

As the family arrived home in the car, one of the boys asked if they could carry the iPad in. The husband explained that they could, but they were to hold it tightly and not run with it. As we walked towards the house, we saw said child running with the iPad, tripping with the iPad, and dropping the iPad.

We scrunched up our eyes, hoping to turn back time, but we both knew. We just knew, as we watched the iPad slide along the concrete. That beautiful smooth screen was now shattered into a hundred tiny pieces. A spontaneous double yell of  "Get to your room" was heard all down the street, as we silently entered the house. The husband was due to go out, but he couldn't leave the child up in his room, wondering if he had a future.

So after a calming down period, the husband went upstairs and spoke to the child in question. The child was very remorseful, very apologetic and knew that he had done wrong. Of course, it was the disobedience which needed addressing. The iPad's demise was a consequence of disobedience. The husband dealt with the incident, while I nursed the poorly iPad in the kitchen. When the husband came back downstairs, he explained to me that our son was still alive and that he had not simply said sorry to his dad, but that he had truly repented. His dad forgave him. The boy had hugged him, smiled and walked away.

We both realised that we were miffed at how freely our son had walked away. We wanted him to be more guilt ridden, to have his tail between his legs, to dwell more on his sin, for it to affect him longer. God spoke to us in that moment. The iPad was still broken, and there would be a cost to fix it. But the sin had been dealt with, the boy had said sorry and his father had forgiven him. And that's really how it is with us. Our sin and its consequences have caused us to be broken, and it cost Jesus His life to fix it. But when we come to Him truly repentant, He is quick to forgive, and we can walk away guilt free, secure in the father's unconditional love.

It's taken a while to blog about this one, because it just seemed so unfair that our boy was so free from the incident after he'd been forgiven. But we tend not to go for 'fair' in this house. Instead, as well as reminding the little people, we remind the big people about Jesus' selfless love, and how the cross wasn't fair, but tipped heavily in our favour.

"God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." 2 Corinthians 5v21

Thursday, 19 September 2013

All Day Long

Wow my last post was a month ago, what's that about? Ah yes, it was August. A time for laying in, staying in pyjamas, lazy DVD days, doing 'whatever we please whenever we please' days and generally just chilling out. Plus of course, the actual reality of 6 weeks with all 5 kids, all day, every day, from sun rise to sun set, every minute of every hour...

It's a funny mix, the summer holidays. I love not being in a routine. I'm never late anywhere, because there is no where to be. I love just letting the kids play and eat freely, while still being in my pyjamas, (and if possible, still under a duvet). I love playing with them and seeing them and hearing them, and just them being around me all day long. But the other side to it, is that I see them and hear them all day long. They're around me all day long. Like ALL day long. They need food all day long, they need entertaining all day long, they need a mediator, an arts and crafts specialist, a Lego builder, a trainer, a bottom wiper, a chef, an activities coordinator, a law enforcement officer, a tone changer, a friend, a listener, a perspective changer, a teacher, a hugger... all day long.
In a nutshell, they need me all day long.

They don't seem to get the 'August memo', that us mums can just take a break. No more uniforms to wash, book bags to go through, newsletters to read, lunch boxes to empty, reading books to slowly and painfully sit through. No more Chip or Biff or Kipper! No more homework or school runs or time restraints. Just a nice relaxing month or so off....

Older, wiser mums say things like 'it goes so quickly' and 'you can't get that time back' and 'they're only little for a short time'. Us younger, 'not so wise yet' mums think August itself is the slowest month in history and the little ones have been little forever, and life as we know it, will never change. We will learn I'm sure, and we in time will hear ourselves imparting that same wisdom to mums who can't quite take it on board yet..

It seems you can't quite take the month off from the privilege of being a mum. There they are every day, all day long. They come with their wants and needs and delights and conversations. With their questions and heartaches, and curiosity and repetitiveness. With their joys and disappointments. With their squabbles and achievements. With their grazes and in this house, with their woodlice. And yes they need me all day long. It's what I'm here for.  

Of course, there's the realisation that I need my Heavenly Father all day long too. I need Him all the time, every day. He doesn't tire of me or take time off from loving me. He loves seeing me and hearing me all day long. He loves just being around me. He's waiting to hear my questions, my heartaches, my disappointments, my joys and my squabbles. He'd be totally engaged if I wanted to show Him a woodlouse. And He's also ready and waiting to give me the strength and grace I need to do this mothering malarky all day long, every day, from sun rise to sun set, every minute of every hour...

"I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
Philippians 4v13

"The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
 He fulfils the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them."

Psalm 145v18-19