The reality about sleepovers (in my opinion):
1. Every child desires it.
2. They're fun.
3. They provide children the ability to get to know their friends better.
4. They create lasting memories.
5. Kids get to try different things: foods, games, interactions with people. Ty recently came home from a sleepover at Gabe's house and informed me that he had a dish, which contained black beans, and he LOVED them. LOL!
6. It's provides an opportunity to explore the beginning stages of trust. Darren and I will learn if our expectations and rules are followed outside of our home (ie. manners, no PG-13/R movies, violent video games, etc.). Ty's friend Josh is really great at saying, "I'm not allowed to watch this..." or "I'm not allowed to ...."
7. Allowing others to spend the night at our home, especially non-believers, allows us to minister to them by allowing them to see the way our home is run (ie. prayer at dinner/bed).
8. My kids seem to get along a lot better when an "outsider" is over.
9. The more, the merrier.
10. As parents, we are able to get to know our children's friends better too. Then we can decipher if they are a good or bad influence on their lives, and decide whether or not to allow that relationship to continue to grow.
1. It breaks your routine. Later bedtimes. Earlier rise times.
2. It creates an inbalance in your home.
3. It's more work.
4. Every family has different rules. Your children will be exposed to things that they may NOT be exposed to in your own home.
5. Dealing with other children's persnicketies: be it sleeping habits, poor manners, dietary issues, sleep walking, loose language (one boy that we recently allowed to sleep over uses the word "crap" a lot. We do not allow that word to be said in our home!"). There's just so much to consider.
6. If you have multiple children, your other children desire to "tag along" with the sibling that is being blessed with having a friend sleepover. It creates hurt feelings etc.
Sadly, YES, we will probably have different sleepover rules for the boys than we will have for Lilah. I NEVER thought I would have different rules for my sons/daughters. I already know, unless it's a cousin or a member of our church body, our children will NOT be allowed to sleep anywhere, outside of the home (for now that is a FIRM rule).
I also know that there may be a time when sleepovers will NO LONGER exist in our home. Being we have both a daughter and two sons, I just cannot chance that in the middle of the night, while Darren and I are sleeping, the combination of a co-ed sleepover will create temptations for things to happen.
Regardless, for NOW, we do allow our children to enjoy sleepovers from time to time. I enjoy doing it less often than the kids would prefer because then it is fun to me as well, and I try to make it extra special.
I desire to spend time with my best friends' children as well and get to know them on a deeper level. How else can our family really do that if we don't invite them over for an extended period.
I was finally able to bless Lilah with a sleepover at our home. She invited Ansley. Girls are so easy...messier, but easier. LOL! There's just more for them to do. They spent the first (2) hours playing dress up, school, and running around outside. Then, they spotted the ice-cream truck. A little "sleigh riding" and then off to the pool. I captures a few fun photos from the night. They claimed to have ended the night telling "Fat ghost stories"???? Not really sure what that is, but they seemed to enjoy it. LOL!
I think you can tell by all of the photos above, the girls had a fantastic time. They got along so well. Enjoy ALL of the photos below by double clicking on the photo album below!!!