The timeline of my 1st grader’s life according to him.
In a recent Social Studies lesson, my son was learning about timelines. The last activity on the page was to make a timeline of events in his life. Of course we began with when he was born. The only other events he chose to include were getting our dog and starting school. When the time came to add 2020, I asked what he wanted to record for current events.
Without a moment’s hesitation, he replied, “Anthony is stuck at home.”
Those five words spoke volumes. They reflected how our current situation has defined this period in our lives. Stuck.
This assignment reminded me of a homework activity my daughter had last fall. She was to interview family members and ask what event they believed defined their generation. Both hubby and I believed that 9/11 was the defining experience for those of our age. My mother-in-law and father-in-law said Vietnam or Korean Wars. Greg’s grandmother said World War II and a tornado that had hit their hometown. It was funny to me how tragedies seemed to determine our identities. Why is it that we don’t typically use the advent of a new invention or success as the center to what we see in ourselves?
Well, I’ll tell you why.
Success is beautiful and uplifting, but tragedy builds character and resilience. Continue reading “History in Childhood”
Getting carded at a store, gas station, bank, or restaurant can be embarrassing or uplifting, depending on your age and situation. Now I know of one carding situation that is a positive any time it happens. These magical moments occur when the mailbox door is opened and a card is inside waiting just for you.
For years I have been a card stamper. I LOVE designing, making, and sending cards to people. For about the last 4 years, I have made it a habit to give or send at least one card a week. The last three or four months I’ve been slacking though.
With the COVID 19 quarantine upon us, I took to my crafting table and whipped up a bunch of new cards. Maybe it was anxiety or fear, maybe it was a need to hide from my cooped up family, maybe it was a desire to get some creative juices flowing before the grumpiness of being stationary set in, I don’t know, but what I do know is that I made almost 20 cards in less than an hour and a list of who I wanted to receive them.
In my creative excitement, I sent pics of my progress to my #1 Stampin’ Up sister Rebecca. (She led our stamping club for the last 10+ years.) I was so proud to share my creations with her and my rekindled flame for bringing joy through cards.
As always, Rebecca was super supportive and followed up with her own flurry of card making. Continue reading “Getting Carded”
Today a friend texted that she was sad I quit my blog.
I was sadder that someone thought I gave up my Intentergy.
As most of us have been in a whirlwind with the events of the last few weeks, I felt it was my duty to take time and share some Intentergy and reassure everyone that there is still plenty of energy with positive purpose here.
Two weeks ago I had the distinct privilege of sharing some positive purpose with the teachers at St. Teresa School in Campbell, Mo. We faced the frustrations of teaching in spring time…. little did we know 6 days later, we would have to walk away from our schools and move learning into the homes of our students.
The beautiful staff at St. Teresa took me at my word that I could be paid in chocolate.
At our meeting the teachers and I discussed the power of counting up our blessings and successes and not letting the count downs lead to let downs. Even though I was afraid they might string me up for blaspheme, I shared my belief that we shouldn’t count down the days until summer break. They may have furrowed their brows at me a bit, but after hearing a story from my first year of teaching, they began to understand my reasoning behind this belief.
My first year I filled a position that had been the turnstile for a revolving door of educators. The students were more accustomed to teachers leaving than teachers staying.
One March afternoon, I was tutoring a student in my classroom and we heard my neighboring teacher loudly announcing how many days were left until summer break. I tried to cheer the struggling student by saying, “You’ve improved so much this year. I bet you’ll be glad to move on to bigger and better things next year.”
The student frowned and said, “I guess you’re gonna leave too. You want to get away from us just like they (the other teachers) all do.”
My heart ached. What a sad accusation!
Continue reading “Still At It…”
We all know life is messy. Many of us feel like there is just too much going on in our lives. Our mole hills really are mountains and a simpler existence would make getting through the day so much easier.
This month let’s make our mess less.
Each day in March, I encourage you to toss out, donate, or give away at least one thing that you no longer use or that just takes up too much space in your place. Once you start the process of picking out the excess, you will find the act of eliminating the unnecessary empowering.
Don’t know where to start?
Consider your closet or dresser. Anything you didn’t wear in the last year is perfect for purging.
Give the kitchen cabinets a sweep. Gadgets, pans, or expired products provide instant pitches or pass alongs.
What about your catch-all drawer? I am certain there are some Box-tops to go to education, coupons that no longer count, or just some stuff that would benefit from being organized.
A large part of March makes up the Lenten season and I always use this season as a chance to challenge myself to get rid of the excess in my home. Continue reading “March Positivity Challenge – Make Your Mess Less”
“It’s a hellava start, being able to recognize what makes you happy.” – Lucille Ball
Most of the time it’s easy to find things that bother or irritate us. Often it’s just as easy to find things that we want or wish for, but it’s a whole other challenge to find what makes us happy.
When I was 22, I ended my relationship with a longtime boyfriend. In fact, we were engaged, but it just wasn’t a situation that I felt could work. I wasn’t happy.
After ending a relationship that I had believed I wanted since the 4th grade, I was really lost. I mean, there was not a map, compass, GPS, or Uber who could have gotten me where I needed to be.
I went on a few first/last dates. There was one nice guy who I ran off with a massive meltdown after a way too late night at karaoke.
It took a blind date, two follow up dates, and meeting his Grandpa Joe and Grandma Dorothy before I began to believe happiness could be found with the man who is now my hubby.
Love is one arena that seems to give happiness a run for its money, but once we give love a chance, we’ve got a hellava lot better chance at finding happiness. Continue reading “A Hellava Start – Wise Words Wednesday”
Greeting cards are one of the best parts of birthdays, anniversaries, saying thank you, or just to brighten someone’s day. At my son’s 7th birthday party, I gained a new appreciation for the messages inside greeting cards.
A few of the boys made cards to go with their gifts. These were particularly sweet and showed some serious artistic promise. Others purchased greeting cards they thought the birthday boy would enjoy. (His loves for the color yellow, Legos, outer space, and dinosaurs were well represented.)
The magical epiphany of greeting card messages came as the huddle of wiggling wish givers waited for my son to sound out the words inside a store-bought card. One of my son’s buddies (who had made his own card) exclaimed, “It came with all those letters already inside!”
That 7 year-old boy realized something as simple as a card already containing an expression of friendship was something to celebrate. The fact there was an option to give a card with the message right there inside was something to be proud of, to feel excited about, and to make a gift extra fancy.
Here is your Intentergy challenge for today. You are just like that card. You already have the letters inside you. Dedicate your intent and energy to putting the message out there for others. Be proud of your accomplishments and of your friends and family. Share excitement for great things happening around you. Fancy things up a bit with some flattering, faith-filled, or funny messages. You were sent here with all those letters already inside you. It’s okay if you don’t sound like a Hallmark commercial. The simplest sentiments and discoveries (like a card with the letters already inside) are better anyway.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. Special shout out to my friend Angela for being the mom who sacrificed herself as a warrior in the Nerf gun war. Angela took one for the mom team allowing the Nerf war teams to be even. I salute you!
This post may make me sound crazier than usual, but it is something I have contemplated for a while now.
Do you have a time of day where you find yourself looking at the clock at the exact same hour and minute each day?
Well, I do.
That time is 12:34.
When I Googled the quandary of looking at the same time every day, there were lots of hits. Most people, it seems, feel the clock is always on 9:11 or 11:11 when they check it. Some believe this is an ominous sign of things to come or possibly an apocalyptic foreshadowing. I’m not sure I believe that to be the case, but, hey, it’s a free world.
Continue reading “12:34 – Do You Have a Time Like This?”
Earlier this summer, my youngest son was helping me run errands. He had behaved well and been so patient all morning. When he asked to purchase a small cactus in at the hardware store, I said, “Yes.” The cactus was in a small plastic pot and didn’t seem too dangerous, so I didn’t think twice about taking it home.
My six-year-old son proudly watered the cactus every other week and talked to it almost daily. I didn’t give it much attention until he placed it on the kitchen counter next to my Christmas cactus. I noticed his cactus was a bit pale and still had a tag hanging off it.
Upon closer inspection I made a prickly discovery. My sweet son’s cactus was a fake. It was made in China.
Now you might ask, “How in the world did you not know the cactus was a fake?” Continue reading “Don’t Get “Stuck” on Your Mistakes – Wise Words Wednesday”
My 6 year old LOVES the color yellow. He has yellow headphones, a yellow tablet case, and even sports yellow Crocs.
As we did some room re-arranging at our home, he inherited his sister’s old room. When we built our home a number of years ago, my daughter selected pink and purple for the walls and those just weren’t going to suite the room’s newest inhabitant. His wall colors were to be yellow (of course), blue, and gray with outer space decorations. (It was going to be out-of-this-world.)
My son insisted that he wanted yellow sheets for his new bedding.
I searched for yellow sheets. It is not possible to find yellow sheets. (Most people associate yellowed sheets with bed wetting.) Amazon, Target, Walmart, Bed Bath and Beyond, T.J.Maxx… no one could help me.
So I did what any loving mother would do. I dyed white sheets yellow.
My husband told me I was crazy. I told him to not mess with me or I would dye his sheets yellow too.
The end result was not perfectly, evenly yellow, but I had a little boy who was very happy.
So while his yellow sheets may have been a bold design choice, I hope he always remembers the brazen acceptance of his vision and how happy it made him to bring that vision to reality.
As you make your way through the day, I hope you too will find ways to make bold choices and accept the dynamic decisions of those you love. Let the colorful courage be something that not only brightens the situation but charges the positivity and purpose in your day.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. I did not encourage him to yellow the sheets by any other means. They are yellow enough.