What’s going on this week? Well, a whole lot of learning. Our son left for a week long overnight field trip last Sunday. He just started attending a new school and even though he has been making friends, he has only known them for a few weeks. This is the longest he has been away from home and I miss him!
I’m sure he is having a wonderful time and I’m thankful for my friends who reassured me that their kids who already had the opportunity to go on this trip, had a great time and came back with lots of fun stories. So, while he is learning about nature and science and being away from home making new friends, I’m learning to trust that he will be just fine and learning to let go.
This morning, I volunteered with our daughter’s classroom. Every month, their class gets to visit an elderly home to read to the residents who receive care for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. The kids walk from school to the care home with books tucked under their arms. While the kids bring joyful energy and the excitement of having a visitor to these residents, the kids learn so much more than just reading skills.
They learn how to be respectful to others, about the challenges of having a disease like Alzheimer’s and that they can provide joy just by showing up and reading. They also learn that even though a resident may fall asleep during the middle of their story or act like they don’t care about being read to, it doesn’t have anything to do with how well they read their story or the level of their reading skills. They still have a gift to give and can share it by reading.
This morning, one of the residents had fallen asleep while a boy was reading to her. He didn’t get deterred by this at all and just continued reading his book. I walked over and told him that his reading must have relaxed her so much that it helped her to fall asleep. He gave me the biggest smile and continued on. A gift to her and a gift to him.
Watching these kids connect with the elderly at this care home, reminded me of one of my favorite quotes by Mother Teresa: “We can do no great things; only small things with great love.” Life can be such a struggle but sometimes the smallest acts of kindness and love can make the biggest difference.
P.S. In the spirit of giving, I recently designed gift tags that you can use to add a cute little something to presents for your friends, family and kids. They feature my new daisy flower and popular smiling snowman illustrations so they are perfect all year around - for both gifts in the summer as well as winter. I strive to help you find or make meaningful gifts for your loved ones so I hope you like this gift tag printable!
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Illustrations and nature inspired, handmade art gifts that celebrate the simple joys in life.