Friday, December 14, 2012

A Heavy Heart and a Changed Perspective

  Today my heart is heavy for the the families of the children and teachers that were killed in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary. What these parents, families, and friends are facing this evening is just unimaginable!

The news certainly changed my perspective on life today....I realized that even though I may have difficulties, that at times things may not go as planned, that I face what seems like insurmountable obstacles, that in comparison to today's tragedy....that my trials are small. I realized that time with our children is short at best....even when you raise them to adulthood, when you look back, you find yourself asking where the time has gone. As I was picking up for what seemed like the 100th time today, I thought this phase of life will be gone all too fast and that one day I would wish for crumbs left behind by my aspiring chef.....a sign that she has been here, full of life. Childhood passes in the blink of an eye it seems. I had school planned for today for both children, but the news of that situation made me realize that today I needed to just BE with my children. So we spent the afternoon baking cupcakes and cookies, making messes with the icing as we tried to decorate them. ABC's and 123's can wait another day, algebra and history will today we made memories instead of equations, we laughed and giggled instead of working on our short vowel sounds.....It's important that we have these  moments to look back on.

I know all too well how important those moments are. On Christmas Eve it will be one year since I saw my Dad alive....looking back over this last year, the memories of him are not all the material things that I had growing up, but the things I remember are the times when we would be at the house, times around the piano singing, times at church together. I remember one winter it was snowing and we had a horse. Daddy had built a sled for some reason. It was a Saturday, because Momma was in the kitchen making a cake for tomorrow's Sunday dinner. Daddy hooked the horse up to that sled and he took me for a ride out through the hills where we lived. The snow was those big flakes that just glide silently to the ground. The picture of those flakes falling against the backdrop of the cedar trees, my Dad sitting by me guiding the horse, talking to me about the beauty of nature and how this must be just like what it was like in times long ago before cars were made, he told me how God made each of the seasons, that He made each one of those snowflakes, and that God was big but he said God knows all about me too. He kept telling me we needed to head back to the house, but I kept begging him to keep riding..... I would give anything to have another snowy afternoon with him.
Today let's make an effort to make a every moment count. It's ok to let things go just for a minute and let your children know  how important they are to you, to make memories that will carry not only them, but you as well, for a lifetime.

I usually end with telling you to make another step on the journey, but today let's pause just for a minute on our journey and say a prayer not only for God to hold close each Mommy and Daddy whose little angel won't be coming home today, but let's also pray for the community to come together and help each other and the children that were left but whose innocence was shattered forever......


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Random Acts of Kindness Day

  Today is 12-12-12...I was invited to participate in a random acts of kindness day by one of my facebook friends. This idea stemmed from a couple crazy, homeschooling, foster mamas’ trying to teach their kids that the holidays are about giving and not always receiving.This is a great idea and one that would be awesome to adopt not just today, but everyday of the year. After all, everyone you meet is facing some sort of challenge or battle in their lives. The smallest act of kindness can just speak volumes to someone going through a difficulty. You may think that you are not able to participate in a day like this because you are struggling financially. But, the great thing is this....acts of kindness are not limited to monetary gifts. Anyone can participate.....the two people that started this live in Florida, they were just doing it to teach their own children, but now this has spread all over. I read where people from Nova Scotia, the Phillipines, Canada, and many states here in the US. In case you need some ideas to jump start you thinking of things you can do....I have a list I found at 

  • Donate your books to the local library....many children and adults do not have the financial means to buy books, or an e-reader device. 
  • Carepacks to the homeless
  • Help someone with a task in their home for free
  • Help someone whose car has broken down ( do be safe when doing this one)
  • Help do yard work for an elderly neighbor
  • Hold the door open for someone
  • Let someone go in line in front of you
  • Make a blanket for a homeless person
  • Pay the bill/tab for the person in line behind you
  • Read to a child
  • Read to the elderly
  • Visit the nursing home and find out how you can volunteer. Can you play an instrument? Bring a checker domino game and visit a resident there that don't get a lot of company
  • Return you shopping cart
  • Thank your local police or fire department
  • Write a letter and mail it to someone who has made a difference in your life
  • Help a struggling classmate by studying together
  • Pick up trash
  • Pick up your toys
  • Be the designated driver
  • Be the friend who listens
  • Be kind to someone that you dislike
  • Call or visit someone that is sick
  • Cook a meal for someone
These are just a few ideas to get you started....I hope you will be inspired today to try a random act of kindness, you never know how you may be the one that helps someone take another step on their journey......