Friday, November 21, 2014

Don't Give Up...and Happy Thanksgiving!

It's the season of giving.  It's a time to be thankful.  For some reason, this year I have taken a step back and evaluated those thoughts.  Why do we put so much pressure on being thankful and giving during this commercialized, 8-week season of the year?  This should be a focus all the time.  Don't get me wrong, I love the holidays, and the way we get to transform our homes into a decorated place of celebration and family gathering.  I simply struggle with focusing on being 'thankful and giving' in November and December.  These are virtues that should be stressed and encouraged year round.

It's very possible that my age has something to do with my personal feelings, or even the recent events experienced by my family.  However, families and friends should be giving thanks to one another as often as possible.  Humans should be giving of one another in a thoughtful way, as best they can...without any judgment or expectation of assistance in return.  I recently had a conversation with someone who said she 'used to help others, but they don't help her anymore', so she stopped.  The giving spirit requires you to dig deep, and expect nothing in return.  That is hard. It also requires you to withhold judgment from those who simply cannot give in ways that you may choose to.

I also think that it's ok to give to yourself.  If you don't, you just might break.  Give yourself time.  Give yourself peace.  Remove yourself from the demands and chaos in your life that are not healthy... and heal.  If you do that, you are giving the gift of a healthy 'you' to your family.

Don't wait for November.  Get crazy and give in March too!  Be thankful in June!  Spread it out.  It will make for an amazing year!

Happy Thanksgiving to all...I am thankful to those of you who are reading.  I am grateful to my family and friends and feel so blessed today, and all other days of the year (even the difficult days).

Enjoy the turkey showdown video's just for fun!

Keep It Simple...and give thanks!  ♥D

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Our New Family Member - Screen

Note - For those of you following my book progress, there's an update on that page!  Check it out :)

As the school year rolls on, I assume parents are experiencing the joys and frustrations of schoolwork, extra-curriculars, and simply spending some time together at home.  In addition, we now have the added family member who I lovingly call 'Screen'.  He didn't come home from the hospital, but nonetheless, he did take a good amount from your wallet.  Screen is usually present in all rooms of the house.  He can sit on a desk, on your lap, and may even be an appendage on your body (usually connected to the hand).  Sometimes, Screen talks back to you.  Has that happened?  You think you are home with just your family (maybe you are even wearing your pajamas) and Screen has a person on it who suddenly says, "Hi Ms. Jayson, how are you"?  That is Skyping Screen.  I don't always love it when he is present.  But my children do.

Screen can take over.  Do you spend more time with Screen than with your kids?  Track it.  Record the amount of time you are actually focused on your children WITHOUT Screen present.  Screen has a very tricky way of invading all of our spaces.  Technology is important and critical for our ever changing society. We also need to ensure that our children are ready for future, but we  need to prepare them to be good, virtuous human beings.  That does not come from a screen.  This comes from direct, uninterrupted interaction with others.

Time spent with children, modeling for them kindness, generosity, patience and empathy for others is an invaluable lesson.  We live in a society that often demonstrates a disregard for the human spirit and humanity.  Wouldn't it be amazing if the news was filled with stories of acts of kindness brought forth by our children?  Play with your children, model for them what to do when things do not go their way.  Show them how to solve a problem with words (as opposed to some ways they will learn from Screen).  Show them how to disregard Screen and make them feel more important than Screen (demonstrates focus, non-distraction).

Finally, I know Screen has moved in permanently.  I love Screen, too.  But let's simply find a balance.  An hour with Screen, an hour outdoors-playing.  Another hour with Screen, and hour eating dinner together-NO Screen (he can eat later).  You can do it, so can the kids.  Enjoy the video below...I love the little baby who treats the magazine like an iPad.  ;)

Keep it simple...and balanced.  ♥D