|Maddie circa 2000|
My sweet Maddie came for a surprise visit this weekend. It was so nice to see her, and of course we played the whole time. I'm super glad we got to play, but I'm feeling sort of behind this week since I didn't do most of the items on my not-nearly-as-fun-as-hanging-with-Maddie to do list.
I need to do LOTS of sewing since I'll be at an open house with my friend Tina this Friday from 6-9 p.m. She is a graphic designer who makes fantastic hand lettered signs, and I'll be selling my zipper pouches and lavender sachets. It would be awesome to see you there, the address is 2328 St. Augustine Drive in Brentwood, CA. It's a good time to buy a last minute Mother's Day gift, or one for graduation or even Father's Day.
When Maddie was a tiny shiny of just seven years she had a Sunday school teacher, and not just any Sunday school teacher. Her teacher was what some might call "a general in God's army." She was a retired school teacher and boy oh boy did she take her Sunday school class seriously. She was the kind of lady who does everything 110%! Her students were expected to do homework each week in preparation for the coming Sunday lesson, and to be honest, as young parents we were a bit frightened of what might happen if Maddie showed up to class without it.
In our church most members pay tithing of 10% of their income to the church. It is a principle that has blessed my life dearly and I am grateful that I've been able to do it. When Maddie's weekly homework was to do a chore, get paid for it, and meet with her teacher the next Sunday to take her little 10% and give it to our sweet Bishop I was totally happy to help make it happen.
During the week I gave her a few easy chores, paid her, and showed her how to save 10% for tithing. We talked about how the money is used to help run the church and help people in need. I really thought I had this particular homework assignment in the bag.
Maddie was SO proud of herself! On Sunday she kept her little quarter in her purse and waited with anticipation for her turn to meet with the Bishop. Sister * (not even going to type her name here) asked Marc and I to meet her and Maddie in the Bishop's office after Sunday school but Marc had another meeting so it was just me with baby Jonathan on my hip and a five year old Katie in tow.
Our Bishop was about the kindest man you can imagine. I really loved and looked up to him. Sister * prompted Maddie to give the Bishop her tithing and when she did he told her how proud he was of her and then asked her what she did that week to earn her allowance.
I wasn't sure if she knew what "allowance" meant and was preparing to explain it to her, but I needn't have worried.
She piped right up and announced, "Oh, my mom paid me to watch my brother and sister while she and my dad took a shower."
No! You are thinking.
Oh yes, I am confirming. She said that. In front of our Bishop and her General in God's Army Sunday school teacher.
In the millisecond it takes to consider these things I constructed and discarded a hundred explanations I could try and give for her announcement before deciding that the only clear solution was to beat a hasty retreat. I grabbed Maddie by the hand, said, "have a nice afternoon," to everyone, and rushed my flaming red self and my three holy terrors outta there!
Yes, they are all guilty by association!
The only consolation was when I was lamenting over the incident to my friend Paige and she wisely comforted me by saying, "It probably makes the Bishop happy to hear you and Marc still shower together; it means he doesn't have to worry about you."
Please, please just let him forget she ever said it!