One of my fondest memories of my childhood is a “good night saying” that became very special in my family. One of the things my parents would say to me before bed when I was little was “sweet dreams.” I’m not exactly sure how it got started, but for some reason we began adding favorite colors into the saying. For my dad we’d say, “Sweet orange dreams!” For my mom we’d say, “Sweet green dreams!” And they would say to my sister and to me, “Sweet pink dreams!” It stuck, and to this day my parents will still say that to me when saying goodnight if we happen to be staying over at their house, or to end a phone call at night. It has always created that warm, fuzzy feeling inside for me. It’s like our own secret handshake…a special bond that can never be broken. And hearing those words — “Sweet pink dreams!” — did help me to rest a little easier at night.
With my own children, we have a family goodnight saying, too. Ours came about because of the book Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney. It was DH’s favorite book to read to Luke when he was a very little baby, and it has continued to be a favorite in our family for years. The story is of Big Nutbrown Hare and Little Nutbrown Hare, and how they express their love for each other. The story ends with Little Nutbrown Hare saying, “I love you to the moon,” and then Big Nutbrown Hare replies, “I love you to the moon…and back!” I’m not really sure if it was we grownups who started saying “I love you to the moon…and back!” or if the kids were the ones to start it, but it has become our special goodnight saying. When I hear Luke or Lilah say that to me, it’s that same warm, fuzzy feeling from my childhood all over again. I hope it creates that feeling for them when they hear it as well, and I hope it helps to add comfort to their nights as they close their eyes and drift off to sleep.
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