Cultivate an attitude of gratitude instead of a mindset of scarcity. Observe the abundance and good that is already in your life. Expressing gratitude enhances your enjoyment and deepens your pleasure in life. It also makes you more receptive and paves the way for more good to come your way. Whether you are thanking a friend for offering a helping hand or praising God for a beautiful day, learn to count your blessings and you’ll see them multiply. -Candy Paull
This week was hard for me. I can imagine it was hard for many moms. With spring comes the end of school and we pass into this season of change. For some of us that change was our first child finishing their first year of school. If you are like me it was the move of our youngest from the elementary grades. Maybe your youngest just graduated high school. Or change fell in the middle, not monumental but still a reminder that each child is one year older. One year more accomplished. And one year less dependent and maybe even less interested in us.
The last part could be so easily taken as an insult. But really it’s not a bad thing at all. It is part of the product. Your hard work over these years is turning your children into independent, capable, little creatures with likes and interests of their own.
For me, this is where an attitude of abundance and gratitude can really make a difference. I am privileged to learn my kids and to relearn them every time they grow. There is abundance in exploring new interests and gratitude in knowing that the boys continue to share what they are interested in with me.
Gratitude is the heart’s memory -French proverb
My heart is absolutely full knowing that they are still interested in spending all day running through the woods. And what would a day in the woods be without a great picnic? Picnics are awesome. They present such a good opportunity to practice the art of abundance with the boys. It is so easy to make just a few good ingredients seem like so much when you already have an atmosphere of adventure and wonder surrounding you. The trick to a picnic is choosing really really great ingredients. I generally pick one fruit, vegetable, grain, and dairy. That’s all you need. And maybe a little bottle of wine.
Some picnic combinations that I think work so great are:
- Strawberries, cheddar, baguette, and radishes
- Peaches, tomato slices, fresh mozzarella, and flatbread crackers
- Cherries, brie, melba toast, and avocado slices with a little honey to drizzle
- Blueberries, dill havarti, baguette, and cucumbers
I like to start by choosing a fruit because fruit always feels so decadent to me. And once you are in that mindset of plenty it is easy to get excited about adding a few things that will go well with your special pick. I was blessed to find this great picnic basket at a thrift store. It fits all our needs so well. Most of the time I can pack the picnic food on one side and on the other side, separated by a cutting board, I put our table clothe (an old sheet!) my knife and the wine glasses wrapped in napkins.
I’d really love to know what things you do with your family to create experiences of togetherness and growth?
Oh and hey! I know you were going to but please remember to bring some water with you.