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Not So Fast, 2020!

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Here’s the thing. It is really easy to just chalk this year up as a loss and wish it away, crossing our fingers that 2021 will be better. But, I am challenging myself and hopefully all of our families as well, to not wish away this year. I had the sobering realization that life also happened this year, life that we won’t get back, life that won’t wait for things to end or change. We have been through a lot. And while I am just as eager as the rest of us to find some joy and hope in the new year, let us not be so zealous to look ahead that we miss the beauty that is right now.

Why hello there. It’s been a while since we have posted a blog up here with my thoughts. Can I be honest with you? I am pretty tired of reading/listening to everybody’s thoughts online, so adding mine here has been a struggle. I mean, what can be said that hasn’t already been said? This year has been hard? Yep. It’s been unprecedented? Didn’t think we would use that word so much did we? Chaotic, lonely, frustrating, exhausting, scary, sad, hopeful, hopeless, eventful, boring, stretching, and did I already say exhausting?

As I shared the beginning of this post with some of my co-workers (your other fabulous fun van educators), they candidly agreed that sometimes being in the moment is just, well, hard. Especially with tiny, mostly cute, and sometimes very annoying little humans constantly under your feet. So what’s a mama (or dadda, or papa, or nana…you get the idea) to do in times like these? Here are 3 ideas that I am working on doing in my life and thought I would share with you. If you chose to try any of these, please share them below. We love learning from you all as well!

  1. Snap a photo of the mess, not the perfectly manicured life you are waiting to live. It is so easy to delay taking pictures or documenting life because we are waiting for it to be perfect. Has anyone else realized that perfect just isn’t going to happen anytime soon? Don’t wait to snap a photo of the moment. This is your moment, document it, and laugh at the chaos that is right now. One day, the mess will be gone, the kids will have moved out, the noise will die down and these photos will remind you of all the hard, crazy, funny, and messy moments you lived through.
  2. Put away or turn off your phone just for a little bit. Maybe you turn it off during dinner, or you take your kids for a walk and it doesn’t come with you. Maybe, you spend the morning drinking your coffee or tea and just enjoy watching your kiddos play acknowledging that you had a hand in helping them learn all they know up until this point. Put it in a random place that you aren’t tempted to look at or hear. 5 minutes, 10 minutes, half a day, the whole day, whatever works for you. The phone will still be there when you are ready to come back to it.
  3. Pick one detail to tune into for the day and notice the diversity of those details. Notice the different types of trees in your neighborhood. Pay attention to the color of food as you make a snack for the umpteenth time. It sounds silly but it is an easy way to draw your focus to the now instead of all of the things on your list to accomplish. I never realized how many different shapes of cereal we purchase. Ahh, the little things.

Happy New Year’s friends! Here’s hoping that we get to hang out more in the new year! Keep up the good work!