Monday, January 17, 2011

One Thousand Gifts 1-10

Today I was truly touched after visiting the A Holy Experience and viewing the One Thousand Gifts trailer. If you haven't watched it yet, I highly recommend it, and I will be surprised if your eyes remain dry. I am looking forward to sharing my own 1000 gifts in this little space of mine over the coming year(s). Please follow the link above if you'd like to join!

1. Living in a place with four seasons. Each has it's beauty, and when I have had enough and am ready for change--there it is!

2. Warm hats, especially of the hand-made variety

3. Warm hands, especially of the young boy variety

4. A supportive husband

5. A loving mother

6. Inspiring friends

7. Music--the current favorite in our home is Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf.

8. Bamboo knitting needles in a 1930s mason jar

9. My grandfather's 82nd birthday and that I was able to help him celebrate.

10. My grandfather's 82nd birthday and that his great-grandsons were able to help him celebrate!

Have a wonderful week,

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Christmas 2010, plus a "God" Conversation with a Three-year-old

Hello again, and happy 2011! I decided to take a bit of a hiatus from blogging to refocus, work on items for my little stall at the Crop Around the Corner, and just, well, take a break. This is not a resolution, but I do hope to be back in this little space on more of a regular basis. Now that I've been absent, I have plenty to share! :)

First up, the holidays. My husband is a teacher, so we enjoyed a wonderful two weeks with him being home. We did not go on any big vacations or outings, but we did go to the various parks in our community and enjoyed being together as a family. I, of course, enjoyed the company of my husband as well as the extra help with the boys.

We fed our friends, family and neighbors with special Christmas goodies:

and fed the birds with Winter Solstice treats:

Ben enjoyed his cleaning tools from Grandpa and Grandma:

and Matthew and Buzz have been inseparable since Christmas morning:

We're now back to our usual routine, and that's a good thing. We love the holidays, but that's partly because they're once a year, therefore making them very special. There's something to be said about the routine and consistency of the rest of the year.

Now, I feel the need to document the following conversation before I forget it. Although it is a personal mother/son discussion, I decided that it was well worth sharing:

This evening I was reading Matthew "The Little House in the Big Woods" (picture story version) as his good-night book. There was a picture of Pa with a gun in the forest. Matt asked me what he was doing, so I told him, "Pa is hunting. He is going to kill an animal and use its meat as food."

Matthew just stared at the picture. I asked him if that made him sad. He thought about it for a minute, then responded, "that doesn't make me sad. God made animals for people to eat. They need to eat meat." He then went on to tell me all about how God made good people and bad people, and the good people are fighting the bad people, but it's ok. When I asked him who told him about this, he said that no one told him.

Matthew then told me, "God made a baby. A king was going to kill the baby, but the baby got away and was safe. The baby was Jesus."

Again, I asked Matthew how he knew this. After a couple of minutes he told me that he heard it in the "big church." He said it like, "duh, Mom, this is where I heard it. You should have known that."

Wow. We go to church, but I have to admit that it's not on a regular basis. We're Episcopalian, so there isn't much fire and brimstone in the teachings, and Matt is only in the sanctuary (the "big church") for about a third of the service. As a Christian, I am proud of my little man and the lessons he is learning from being at church roughly once a month.

As a parent, I am awed (and a little frightened!) at how perceptive he is. I wanted to share this because it is very telling about how much children really do listen, perceive, and pick up on, even (especially!) if we don't think they're necessarily paying attention. It's made me think about the conversations I have in front of him, the words I say sometimes say when I think he cannot hear me, and the music I occasionally listen to in the car. I'd like to say that all of the words I speak in front of my children are positive, uplifting and moral, but they are not. I'm not judging myself too harshly, but now I am more aware. I am also thankful for the above conversation and will hold it in my heart always.