When the Tree is Gone

When the Tree is Gone via Daily Prompt: Gone

When the tree is gone.jpg

 

Every year my children and I enjoy decorating our home for the Christmas holiday. Even my husband perks up at the sight of the lights. I try to not put the tree up too early so as to protect the magic its lighting brings. After the feast of the Epiphany (the wise men’s arrival), I dutifully take down all the decorations.

The emptiness created by the absence of tree, garland, and lights gives our home an incomplete feel. The rooms seem stark and the light seems cold. What is it about the time after the tree is gone that darkens our day?

When the tree is gone, the spirit¬†of Christmas is not plainly visible. When the tree is gone, the remembrance of all those Christmas wishes fades. When the tree is gone, the twinkle of Santa’s magic dims and we forget about that whole peace on Earth and goodwill towards men thing. Plus, when the tree is gone, I find it a lot harder to just sit in my arm chair and read a book or watch my kids play. It’s as if the tree is a holiday anchor that holds us in place and reminds us to remain steadfast in the enjoyment of our home and family.

I challenge you to keep the Christmas spirit alive in your actions and words. Take time to sit in your favorite chair and read a book or snuggle with a loved one. Continue in your efforts to bring peace to the lives of those you encounter and yourself. Give the gifts of understanding and kindness in all you do.

Just because there isn’t a tree standing in your living room doesn’t mean you have to become a scrooge. Find joy in the simple elements of each day and you won’t have time to miss that silly old tree.

When the tree is gone, continue to shine as a light for others each day. Put some holiday in your heart and let your Intentergy keep the spirits of others alive and well.

By: Melanie A. Peters

P.S. If you still have your tree up, that’s cool.

Advertisements

Storytelling as a Reward?

Storytelling as a Reward?

20161121_084059

The school that my children attend has been participating in a program where they are called to be safe, kind, and respectful. The theme of the program is Sharing Your Treasures. It goes along the lines of following God’s example of charity and generosity.

When the students earn a certain number of “treasures” in the school treasure chest, they receive a surprise reward. The students are also asked for ideas of things they would like for their reward. This time a 3rd grader suggested a storyteller come visit when the treasure chest was full.

As the treasure chest neared is brink of treasures, the school principal asked if I would be willing to be storyteller. I said, “Sure. When? How much time do I have to tell the stories?” We settled on a date and length of time and I decided in my mind which stories I would share.

I didn’t tell anyone about my secret identity as the storyteller because I didn’t want to ruin the surprise.

Last Thursday was my day to serve as storyteller. I was nervous when I was revealed as the surprise because I could see the incredulous looks on some of the kids’ faces.
“This is our reward???” – is what they were thinking.

I broke the ice with a silly joke and then started in with two fables. By the second minute of the first fable, they were hooked. They were leaning in to hear and wanted to know what the moral of the story would be. After the fables, I shared three myths and one really long joke. The students didn’t want to the stories to end and this storyteller was so relieved.

Since Thursday, I have received multiple emails, phone calls, and compliments from parents at school. There have been plenty of hugs coming my way from the school kids too. It has been very rewarding for me.

It really made me think though.

How is it that one goofy lady and a handful of stories could be considered a reward?

Simplicity was the key. The stories fed the students’ imaginations. The opportunity provided them the chance to just be kids and enjoy the magic of fiction. Simplicity and time. Giving the kids time and attention was significant. There wasn’t any lecturing or scolding or coaching. Just storytelling.

I encourage you to take time to tell some fun or memorable stories of your own this week. Share your time and talents with those you love. Your attention and imagination or maybe stories about past experiences are all that is needed to create a new memory.

Spark energy with your intent to share and reap the rewards of a story well told.

By: Melanie A. Peters

 

Catchin’ Crawdads

Catchin’ Crawdads

Catching Crawdads.jpg

One of the coolest parts of playing in the creek is catching crawdads. On our last creek excursion my husband, daughter, and son caught two crawdads, and you would have thought we discovered a new species. Well, I guess the crawdads were a new species to my kiddos, because they had never had one in their possession before.

As a kid I caught a few of the snappy, creek dwellers and I now harbor fond memories of trying to keep them alive in a big jar with water and rocks.

Crawdads are simple creatures.¬†They hang out under rocks and wait for their food to float by. When something big enough is caught to share, they feed off one another’s catch.

They know all the good hiding places and forage for the simple floating foods.

When you catch a crawdad, they wriggle and try to pinch you with their claws and seek to return to their home of rocks and water. They probably do want to hurt you, but not because they are mean, but because they just don’t feel safe.

We are a lot like crawdads. Continue reading “Catchin’ Crawdads”