Monday, March 24, 2014

Small Things (One)

There has been a theme over these past few months that has become obvious. It is merely that small things take us somewhere, they accumulate, they matter. Take, for instance, the airplane that leaves CA headed toward NY. If the pilot shifts off course by only 1 degree... he will not end up where he wanted to go.

We see this with families, with children, with careers. . . in so many areas of life this has been proven to be true. "The way you do the small things is the way you do everything." And the small things can be habits that shape us. Over time, we see the small things have long-term significance.

Hymns for February and March are posted on our white board.
Here is one small thing we do that I am glad we do: we start each meal with a hymn. We've been doing this for the past 5 years at least (imperfectly, of course!).

Each month we learn a new hymn. So far, we have memorized about 60 great hymns! The idea for this was, in part, due to our dismay over the lack of great hymns being sung in church. That isn't a reason for our children not to know hymns. It simply meant that we needed to intentionally bring hymns into our daily life.

Most hymns have between 3-6 verses. This means we can learn at least one verse each week and have the hymn pretty well memorized by the end of the month. To take it a step further, we can look up the ASL signs and learn those, as well, which further cements the words in our minds.

Another reason I like to start our meals with a hymn is that it is a happy, joyful way to gather to the table. Before we sang, I confess that I was often irritated by calling everyone multiple times for the meal. I would selfishly like to eat my meal hot and fresh! Now, I start our hymn when everything is nearly ready. The kids know to come running and help with any last minute details (sometimes there are a lot: forks? napkins? salt? JuicePlus+? plates?). If they aren't in their seat when the hymn ends, they will miss the prayer AND the food. (This hasn't happened in ages!) It keeps them prompt and I love when we're all working together to make our meal time successful.

1271) Songs in our home
1272) Muddled second verses and laughter
1273) Hot meals and cold meals
1274) Surprise scrambled eggs on the table at 7:15 thanks to L (8) and T (6)
1275) Sound of the water running in the TowerGarden in the garage this cold night
1276) Homemade "Power Balls": 2 cups nuts, 2 cups dates, 2 scoops JuicePlus+ Complete. Other goodies added (like flax seeds). Rolled in coconut.
1277) M (3) lying on the floor with his blanket in the sunshine. He says "I love this spot!"
1278) The Lawyer and I laughing at my big facebook mistake; oh dear!
1279) New consignment store close to us with some great finds!
1280) Pink sunset over the reservoir

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