I hope all of you had a great and Happy Thanksgiving! Our family sure did. We all pitched in and enjoyed our feast. As we all sat down to eat, we began to pray. Daddy led and each one of us expressed what we were each thankful for. It was such a special moment watching all of us holding hands while we each recited our gratitude. It seemed to create a moment of silence and a hush of peace fell upon all of us.
As adults we all read or write about gratitude and being thankful for what we have, but what about the children? They are the future generation after all…My husband and I made a plan of teaching our children appreciation, gratitude and kindness from here on out. We are going to do this not just through the Christmas season (yes I did say Christmas), but on a daily basis. It is a teaching tool that is often ignored with children, especially in schools today.
Yes, it does take effort. We focus so much on ourselves in order to be more thankful, appreciate life and on being more present. The children need this skill as well. I have noticed changes occurring in my four year old already. Even before Thanksgiving, as I drive her to pre-school I make a conscious effort to point out the changes and vibrant colors of the leaves turning. We notice the cows, we notice the cornfields, even down to the weeds at a stop light.
Children need to learn from us to notice their surroundings more. Not just the strip malls or the DVD playing in the car. Use those times to teach them and talk. We can all get so caught up in the rushing around and the “what’s next?” moment. Slow down. You really can implement this with the children if you take the time. It is a teaching moment for you and you learn from them as well. It is an exchange that is so beautiful. Your making a connection in the midst of the traffic, shopping and the fun of decorations you may be displaying. You can discuss what each decoration is, who made it, the colors and lights that make it all sparkle.
Life is meant to be savored. While I teach, it forces me to slow down more and really see this life. We are so very blessed to learn from one another. As one may see something someone else may not notice and a unique bond is being shared. It certain sacredness that seems to take over in those special moments.
If you do not have children, of course do it for you or perhaps the elderly. The ripples that are sent out are endless. What have you appreciated lately that we all can sometimes take for granted? If you cannot answer, all the more reason to step outside and just look. There is so much out there to notice.
When we take the time to truly notice our world, I feel that is the experience of savoring life in those very special moments. The most incredible thing is, you can do it every single day beginning when you wake up and appreciate just being alive! Now that is pretty awesome I would say.
So, get out there and look. Teach the young and old. Let’s all work together to make this practice more of a priority than we do other things. I promise you, you will feel more calm and in the flow of your life!!!