Over at Karen Edmisten, she's got her 40 reasons, which are loosely based on this tragic article. As it's become something of a meme, with a list of who's participating over at Domestic Vocation, I thought I'd do some reasons too. Here goes:
40 Reasons to Have Children
1. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth... -Genesis 1:27-28
2. The lovely smell of a clean baby, whenever you want!
3. "mamamamamama" and "dadadadadada" are music to a parents' ears.
4. Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. -Psalms 127:3
5. I've never felt nearly so feminine, so empowered, so alive, as I did after giving birth to my son!
6. Mental development: I've learned more in the past year than I think I did in the 5 preceding it. The need to be the best Mom, the best teacher possible, is a powerful motivator.
7. The opportunity to buy the cool toys you never had.
8. Cuddle-naps. Sleeping babies on your lap are simply divine! And it's just not the same when it's someone else's child.
9. Taking a child outside is a great reason to get out of the house - and it's very likely to be highly entertaining to watch them once you get there!
10. “[The] ability and willingness properly to rear children, the gift to love, and eagerness to express it in soul development, make motherhood the noblest office or calling in the world. She who can paint a masterpiece or write a book that will influence millions deserves the admiration and the plaudits of mankind; but she who rears successfully a family of healthy, beautiful sons and daughters, whose influence will be felt through generations to come, deserves the highest honor that man can give, and the choicest blessings of God” -David O. McKay (Gospel Ideals , 453–54).
11. They're just so darn CUTE.
12. Mothering is a great opportunity to allow the Lord to burn the selfishness out of your soul.
13. Having children makes you extremely aware of the things in your home and how wholesome they are. The radio sounds different when you know your child is listening and absorbing the messages in the songs and ads. The television looks different when you know that those images are being recorded by a little mind. It makes you more aware of the filth in our culture & more motivated to keep it out. This is not only good for the Littles in the home, it's also good for the Bigs.
14. Kids are interesting people who haven't yet been stifled by social dogmas, and as a result, their insights can be both penetrating and highly entertaining.
15. Young children are genuine: what you see is what you get. They haven't learned to be fake.
16. When the real history of mankind is fully disclosed, will it feature the echoes of gunfire or the shaping sound of lullabies? The great armistices made by military men or the peacemaking of women in homes and in neighborhoods? Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling than what happened in congresses? When the surf of the centuries has made the great pyramids so much sand, the everlasting family will still be standing, because it is a celestial institution, formed outside telestial time. The women of God know this. -Neal A Maxwell (Ensign, May 1978, "The Women of God")
17. Feeling the baby move inside you is sheer magic and complete joy!
18. Friends come and go; a Family is Forever.
19. It's never boring. Something is either always actually happening, or else something needs to happen.
20. I never appreciated the luxury of a shower all by myself - or a host of other little things - until I had a baby!
21. Nursing is a joy and a miracle!
22. Babies make awesome noises.
23. Baby smiles.
24. Baby laughs!!
25. Baby cuddles.
26. Slimy, open-mouthed baby KISSES!
27. Mothering is much more fulfilling than even the best jobs I had. There's no comparison.
28. Motherhood is near to divinity. It is the highest, holiest service to be assumed by mankind. It places her who honors its holy calling and service next to the angels. -The First Presidency (Messages of the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 6 vols. (1965–75), 6:178)
29. If imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, then what a complement it will be when our children follow in our footsteps and, when the right time comes, become parents themselves.
30. If you have no children, you will have no grandchildren. I've heard that being the Grandma is wonderful -- not an experience to be missed.
31. Both sudden and gradual understanding dawns about just exactly what were your parents up to all those years!
32. Mom's insistance that you check in when you get home - after you've got you're own apartment and are just visiting for a few days - makes a whole lot more sense after you check your own baby... in their unpadded crib... (with the slats that you actually measured to make sure they're far enough apart...) for the third time... to make sure they're breathing... before going to bed yourself.
33. Baby cuddles. (They're so special they had to be listed twice!)
34. When you walk slowly enough for little leg to keep up and little eyes and hands to explore the world, you have plenty of time to not only enjoy the wonder your child experiences, but to re-discover a little bit of that 1st time isn't the world an amazing place awe yourself.
35. It's a great cover story for why you have so many adorable picture books. (Have you read "One Duck Stuck"? I'm thinking we may need a 2nd copy for the 2nd child... board books are pretty sturdy, but even they wear out after a certain amount of loving!)
36. Baby feet are the cutest things EVER.
37. You get to help them make baby art - and then hang it up, take pictures of it, keep it in the scrapbook, or decide who needs to have a pick-me-up in the mail when they get it!
38. You get to see a whole new side of your husband. And it's wonderful.
39. Knowing that the wonderful man you love is also your baby's Daddy makes him all the more wonderful.
40. You have nothing in this world more precious than your children. When you grow old, when your hair turns white and your body grows weary, when you are prone to sit in a rocker and meditate on the things of your life, nothing will be so important as the question of how your children have turned out. It will not be the money you have made. It will not be the cars you have owned. It will not be the large house in which you live. The searing question that will cross your mind again and again will be, How well have my children done? If the answer is that they have done very well, then your happiness will be complete. -Gordon B. Hinckley (“Your Greatest Challenge, Mother,” Ensign, Nov 2000, 97–100)