Monday, October 27, 2014

Sharing the Halloween Spirit

Starting in the 7th grade, and continuing until I graduated from high school, I participated in a visitation program through my church's youth group. On Monday nights we would meet up at the church building as a group and then divide into smaller groups and go visit shut-ins and nursing home residents. Sometimes we would do chores for individuals, sometimes we would sing, but often we would just walk the halls and visit. We would shake hands, smile and talk with the people we met.

During this time of my life I was very much an introvert and sometimes these visits could be extremely uncomfortable, but overall I have very fond memories from these experiences.

Since high school I have only been back to nursing homes on a few occasions, typically around Christmas to sing carols, but it hasn't been something that has been a priority.

Recently our small group from church decided to take our kids to a local nursing home, dressed in their Halloween costumes, to hand out candy to the residents. This experience really took me back to my weekly visits in youth group.

As a parent, I can't really describe the pride I had in all 9 of our kids. They confidently marched up to people they didn't know and handed them candy. They really made a lot of people's day. I loved seeing the nurses excitedly walking the halls with us to make sure we didn't miss a single resident. 

With kids ranging in age from 2-11, all of the kids did amazingly well. The two-year-olds were especially funny in that they were determined to not miss giving a single person a piece of candy. I'm not sharing this to brag, I am just so very proud of these kids that are a part of our lives. I am thankful that Jack has a good example of older kids in his life. I am thankful that these kids were willing to spend part of a Saturday visiting other people's grandmas and grandpas, and that they didn't expect anything in return.

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