By Jody Evans
Ok, everyone, tell me how much fun you’re having right now,” Greg teased as he filmed the kids, along with some neighborhood friends, as they shucked corn and sliced it off the cob. The groans and mumbles were clearly ex- pressed.
“Watch it, Greg,” Hunter chirped, “or you’ll get a corn cob thrown at you.” “Yeah, Dad,” Elijah agreed. “And we’re expecting some serious payback.”
Greg and I continued loading corn cobs into their baskets, smiling as we knew this would be one of those miserable moments that became a really good story for them to tell their friends and family in the years to come.
They continued shucking the husks and cutting the corn off the cob until the sun disappeared behind the trees and darkness covered them.
“I can’t see my hands to see what I’m cutting,” Parker complained.
“We could use a little light, Mom.” I turned on the headlights to my car to help them see. “You’ve only cut three, Parker,” Seth pointed out. “I’ve done more than that,” Parker protested. “Elijah, what are you doing?” Sophie asked. “You’re supposed to be helping.”
“I am!” Elijah said, “I’m setting the mood.”
Just then, music began playing and they started moving with the beat as the light highlighted their silhouettes. The bantering continued as they began planning their adventure after they finished their work.
For a moment, they were little kids jumping on a trampoline in the rain. They were riding bikes or chasing squirrels at the Quad, rounding up chickens to put in the coop, or lounging in the living room watching The Lord of the Rings. In a blended family, we have memories that started in the middle of their lives, not just the beginning. Some of the memories are unique to mine and Hunter and Parker’s lives, and some are special to Greg and the Fab Four. Yet, in the years that Greg and I have been married, we have shared some moments unique to our blended family.
“Why are y’all helping?” Sophie asked our neighbor and friend, Ava.
“Marley and I don’t mind,” Ava said. “It looked like y’all needed some help,” Marley added.
As the kids get older, I often wonder what path they will take. I pray about their career choices, their marriages, their friendships, their hopes, their dreams, and their heartaches. In this moment, I saw what I hoped they would always have—joy and friendships—with each other and with other people. In the “misery” of shucking and slicing corn, they found laughter, friendship, and a moment that they won’t forget.
“Done!” Elijah announced. “Now let’s go get some Mexican food!”
“Yeah!” Hunter agreed, as he tossed a corn cob out towards the trees. “And the adults are not invited,” Elijah said. Greg and I laughed and agreed, seeing them jump into the car, covered in corn husks and kernels, and taking off towards town.
“We gave them some miserable memories,” Greg said.
“Yep,” I agreed. “I hope they can have more memories like this their whole lives.”
So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well. Learn to love appropriately. Live a lover’s life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God. Philippians 3: 9 - 11
Jody Evans is a writer and teacher. She and her husband Greg are Tuscaloosa natives who enjoy spending time with their kids, their families and their friends, and their rescue dog Sadie. She can be followed at her blog fightingdragonsandmakingdoughnuts.blogspot.com.