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Ecclesiastes 4:12

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Notes to and from Home

In preparing your family for this trip, one thing some of us have found helpful are daily notes to be read while you are away. This takes two forms, both of which require advance preparation.

Notes to Home

Especially if you have children, you may want to leave them a note, card, or small gift that could be given to them each day you are away as a reminder that you are thinking of then. Theses may be presented to them at a regular time each day, maybe bedtime or breakfast, when they can think, talk, and pray about you.

Looking over your schedule, you might try to anticipate what you would be doing on a particular day and tell them what you expect or where you will be. Loving notes of reassurance of your care for them wand your return — including all the stories you’ll be able to share of your adventures are a good idea. Even a funny cartoon or joke, or a brief “remember when” will brighten their day. What about a favorite and/or reassuring scripture? Or a special prayer for them? One set of parents found scripture cards in a packet at a Christian bookstore and had the care-taking grandparents leave a card on the child’s pillow each night. Use your imagination and your knowledge of your children to know what is most appropriate for each child.

And don’t think just of the children — maybe there are others too, who might appreciate such care while you are away — your spouse, your parents, etc. (Everyday may not be necessary.)

Notes from Home

While you are thinking of and preparing your notes, have your family prepare notes for you to open each day while you are away. Divide the days among your family members so you get one note from one person each day — that is on Monday there’s a note from Mary, on Tuesday from Jack, on Wednesday from Laura…

These can be drawings, jokes, scripture, or just an “I love you.” Have them put each in a dated envelope (they can decorate the envelope too!). No fair peeking — you must wait until the date to open each, so it will be a surprise. When you are lonely and far from home, these notes are really a great boost.

Daily Journal

Depending on the age and inclination of your children/family, you might also encourage them to keep a log or journal of the day’s events, much like you will be doing. “What shall we tell Daddy/Mommy about today?” Maybe just a quick entry at dinner or bedtime will help fill you in when you return — since you’ll have stories to tell, this can help jog their memories of stories to tell you too.

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