22 February 2007

Someone else's cookie always tastes better than your own. (aka Filched food tastes best.)

The best place to be when you're hurt, scared, or upset is in the arms of someone you love.

Farts are really funny.

Touching and cuddling are requirements in life, not perks.

Exploration cannot be hurried.

The most interesting things in life occur close to the ground.

Sleeping in and taking naps don't have to be mutually exclusive.

Time spent doing nothing is important. It's also the best time to do really neat stuff.

Being naked feels good.

Being loud for the sake of being loud is a perfectly good reason.

Getting dirty isn't so bad.

If you say enough, you'll eventually communicate your point.

15 February 2007

This morning, a woman I know told me how her 6-month-old daughter was diagnosed earlier this week as having a serious congenital heart defect which will require open-heart surgery in the very near future. I realized just how blessed I am to have two healthy children.

I received news that a new friend will be moving away. She's very sad to be leaving the support and friendships she's developed over the past few years and wonders what it will be like to be without these. I see that it's such a blessing to live in an area where I'm close to my family, extended family, and many wonderful friends.

This afternoon, a boy in Nicholas' school was lying in the snow and crying after being bullied by some older boys. After spending a great part of the day being frustrated over the way he was treated, I've come so see what a blessing it was to have been able to comfort this boy and help him get back on his way home.

I received a phone call this afternoon that Nicholas' school bus was involved in an accident and that none of the children were injured. I hugged Nicholas close and realized just how happy I was that I'd picked him up from school today.

This evening, I was chided for still breastfeeding Lily. I was annoyed by this until I realized that it's the first negative comment I've received in the 17 months I've been breastfeeding her. It's been a huge blessing to have found so much support for my decision to breastfeed a toddler.

There are so many moments during the day when I have the choice of how to react to the world around me. I can become offended over every bump, or I can gloss over the parts I don't enjoy. I can spend my energy complaining about the injustices in the world or I can focus on each small joy. Although I do get caught up in negativity sometimes I know that life is too short, blessings are all around, and I like being happy.

02 February 2007

I came across the following quote this morning and found it to be very thought-provoking.

"When we adults think of children, there is a simple truth which we ignore: childhood is not preparation for life, childhood is life. A child isn't getting ready to live - a child is living. The child is constantly confronted with the nagging question, "What are you going to be?" Courageous would be the youngster who, looking the adult squarely in the face, would say, "I'm not going to be anything; I already am." We adults would be shocked by such an insolent remark for we have forgotten, if indeed we ever knew, that a child is an active participating and contributing member of society from the time he is born. Childhood isn't a time when he is molded into a human who will then live life; he is a human who is living life. No child will miss the zest and joy of living unless these are denied him by adults who have convinced themselves that childhood is a period of preparation.
How much heartache we would save ourselves if we would recognize the child as a partner with adults in the process of living, rather than always viewing him as an apprentice. How much we would teach each other...adults with the experience and children with the freshness. How full both our lives could be. A little child may not lead us, but at least we ought to discuss the trip with him for, after all, life is his and her journey, too." - Professor T. Ripaldi

I really enjoy how this quote encourages us to totally shift our perspective on children and childhood. In our society, we play Mozart to our embryos, enroll our preschool children in enrichment classes, and spend Grade 1 preparing for post-secondary opportunities.

While I scoff at the idea of doing flashcards with infants who can't even hold their heads up yet, I recognize that I've been guilty of pushing my children into growth rather than enjoying the process of unfolding and experiencing. Now that I've had my second child and I've seen how quickly the early years spin by, I find myself relishing the moment more often than I did. I'm constantly amazed at the beauty and joy which children perceive and create.

How differently would we live life if we really respected the value of childhood, if we saw its value for the experience it provides rather than the future it leads up to?

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