Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Acknowledgement (or how to be humble)

My barista was learning how to make the milky leaf and had her first success on mine!

As a voracious reader from an early age I have tackled a lot of challenging reads. Books that many consider boring, too long, or advanced I devour at rapid rates. I could read hard stuff! Except for the Introduction and The Acknowledgements. Those were BORING! My childish mind thought,"What is the point?" (I also hated the credits in movies.) If it's not part of the story I was not interested! 

These days I  read the Acknowledgments. They are not exciting and generally sound the same in every book, but that does not make them of less value. In my opinion, they might be the most important part on any book (and that roll of credits might be the most important part of a movie). Somebody put time, energy, emotion, love, and skill into the book I hold in my hand, and it is not the work of someone all by their lonesome. No, they had teachers, loved ones, publishers, etc, etc, all allowing that creative act to be in my hands. The author chooses to give credit to some of those people, so in my small way of reading The Acknowledgments I will give them that credit as well. 

For the same reason, if I am not particularly pressed for time, I sit through movie credits. I can't read them all (speed reading on a screen is hard), but all those people were a part of creating the film I just enjoyed, not just the actors and directors. This is what acknowledgements are about: noticing what someone has achieved or created.

Those who create, whether it be great art, music, and literature, or the food we sit down to eat deserve an acknowledgement. Only God creates from Nothing, but as His image bearers we are give the chance to create every single day.  So here is my Acknowledgment Manifesto:

I will say Hello and Please and Thank You. 

I will pay a fair price for goods when I can, and leave tips.

I will compliment achievements of those I know.

I will write thank you notes.

I will applaud generously.

I will read your name in the back of books and the end of movies.

I will praise God for the gifts that He bestows on those around me.

To those of you who read this post, Thank You! It means a great deal that you took the time to view my small act of creation.

What will you do to acknowledge those who create today? 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

March Celebrations

I like March for a lot of reasons, winter is ending, we can take (almost) daily walks and of course the celebrations of the month, including my birthday. With Easter being in March this year the days ahead look to be full of fun planning.

Before those of course is St. Patricks Day.

Roman and I are both fascinated by the stories of this early church missionary, so much so that we named a son for him. The writings of St. Patrick are truly beautiful and Ethan is thrilled to hear any stories about his namesake. We also enjoy a good pot of corned beef!

This year the Spring Equinox and Palm Sunday fall on the same day. I usually use that time to dye eggs, and since every time I make hard-boiled eggs the kids want colored ones, I am going to be putting that on my calendar. Last year I did these Cabbage Dyed Eggs.

One week after St. Patricks Day and falling smack in between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday is my birthday. I have no particular plans this year, but I will find something to mark my 27th year.

Finally we have Good Friday thru Easter Sunday, this year falling on the 25th through the 27th. It is right before the Creston Auction for us, so we will be mentally gearing up for that big event, and probably stay a bit low key. 

As I slowly teach my children about the life of Christ and it's significance, I am made more aware of how beautiful each season of celebration is. It brings me such joy that my children see Bible time as a normal part of their day. They renditions of the Biblical tales certainly have some wild variations, but it is filling their minds, and as we approach the season of Easter I look forward to hearing them retell whatever details stands out in their little minds.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Why the Chicken Pox Didn't Scare Me

It is a well established fact that the only sure comfort for sick children is Mom. We can make chicken soup, force the drinking of liquids, binge watch every PBS and Disney show on earth, but only cuddling with Mom is a sure way to soothe the cough-racked, fevered child.
Because of that exhausting fact most Moms try to avoid long bouts with sickness in their home. After all it means interrupted sleep, special foods, and getting way behind on normal things like dishes or laundry. Then there is the fact that the illness must run its course through the entire family. As a general rule we are a healthy family, but I do not willingly invite the flu or bad colds into our home.

In February I made an exception.

I invited The Chicken Pox over, and it has been with us for about 3 weeks.

My poor children have truly been good about not scratching at those alarming owies that showed up over night. They have downed more tea and cocoa than usual and been spoiled with long story sessions. What a bunch of troopers!

I am not against all vaccines. I have let the doctors poke my children several times (which always breaks my heart, because I hate needles myself). But I did know that I wanted my children to have The Chicken Pox as an actual illness. It is far more effective in the long to strengthening their immune systems. Thankfully, they are all quite young and so this experience, while unpleasant, has not been traumatic. 

There are so many amazing miracles that have been brought about by the study and practice of medicine in the past century. Life threatening diseases, such as typhus, small pox, and polio have practically been eradicated from the America way of life. But the miracle of the human body to protect itself against disease is one that can only be wrought by the kind and healing hand of God.
Sometimes our culture fights too hard against disease, making it look like the devil himself that can only be contained in an antiseptic atmosphere and hazmat suits. Yes, illness is hard, but our body was made to fight hard, not to hide from it. I love my children, and will be glad to stay up all night with them if they cannot sleep for a cough or sniffles. I use good medicine to make them comfortable when they ache and fight fevers. I took them to the doctor, who said all was well, they were in no danger. And I know that their little bodies are now better equipped to handle other disease for which there are no vaccines. 

As we move on with life, I am tired, but we are a well and strong family, Praise the Lord!

These three oils were amazing at relieving the itchiness of The Chicken Pox. Lavender baths for the win!

If you would like to learn more about the chicken pox vaccine go to the National Vaccine Information Center and if you would like to know more about essential oils Doterra has a great bunch of resources.