Thursday, September 3, 2009

Nora, Honora Kathleen Hillery, September 2, 2003

Nora turned 6 yesterday.

She is growing tall and strong.

Yesterday we went to Thelma's Chicken and Waffles to enjoy our birthday mom and daughter date. Nora and I discussed all the things she learned during her 5th year.

She learned to count. Nora counted up to 40 or 50 for me. On her 5th birthday she could only get to 10 or 12.

By her 5th birthday Nora could write her name. Now she can easily recall (at least) most of the letters in her siblings and friends' names. Can write and copy. Her drawing has improved amazingly. I believe that 2009-2010 will be the school year we see Nora begin to read fluently.

Nora loves creative play. She spends a great deal of time with her dolls and little toys making up stories and acting them out.

Nora has a generous heart. I shared this story before, but I believe it is worth retelling. As I prepared to go to India this past winter Nora approached me. She gripped a worn dollar bill in her hand and extended it to me. She asked if I would take that dollar and use it to help the children in India. I took it, tucked it in my bag and gave her a big hug, treasuring her generosity. We prayed that God would take it and multiply it and use it in a wonderful way for the children in India.

During my trip I prayed for God to show me a significant way to use Nora's dollar. So many needs. A dollar seemed so little. What could we do when so many children were desperate?

The last leg of our trip was spent at the home of an Indian minister. He and his wife had taken in a dozen children whose families had lost everything in the Khandamal riots. I asked the wife how she was managing to feed them, and if they were able to afford milk for the children. She shared that she was worried about their growth as she did not have money in her weekly budget to afford milk. When I asked her how much one day's milk would cost she informed me it was equivalent to one dollar.

I found Nora's perfect gift! Nora, my milk drinker, was able to buy a big glass of milk for TWELVE growing children!

We went to the store, bought several days worth of milk and other nutritious foods and even some jam. We prayed that every time those children needed calcium for their bone's growth they would have enough money to buy some more milk.

I cried, thinking that God would use Nora's generous heart and generous gift to help those sweet little friends. Amazed at the reminder that our small gifts matter. Amazed at the opportunity to see my little Nora make a difference in the life of someone else.

Nora. She is sensitive. She is generous. She is grateful. She loves story time with Dad, cuddled on his lap.

Nora. She has chores. Last year her chores included cleaning up the shoe cubby area and cleaning her room. She made great strides in her 5th year in the room cleaning department. I anticipate even greater success this year. I suggested yesterday that now Nora is 6 we will be adding another chore. I know she can handle the responsibility.

Six will be a great year. A year of learning. My mother-in-law copied out a poem for Thomas when he was 6. She died before she was able to share that poem with any of the other kids. I share it now with you, Nora, consider it a card from your Jersey Momma, the one you never got to meet, but she was so happy when she found out you were going to be born. I think she would have loved to share this funny little poem with you.


When I was One,
I had just begun.

When I was Two,
I was nearly new.

When I was Three,
I was hardly Me.

When I was Four,
I was not much more.

When I was Five,
I was just alive.

Now I am Six, I'm as clever as clever.
I think I'll be six now for ever and ever.
-from NOW WE ARE SIX by AA MIlne

Happy Birthday, Nora! I love you so much! I am so glad you were born. You add much to our family. It will be great fun to see you learn many many things this year. May you be blessed richly all through your life with opportunities to share your gifts with others.

1 comment:

Beth said...

Happy Birthday to Nora! What a sweet and generous spirit she has. I know she will enjoy being six--it's a very good age indeed.