Small Rituals, an Activity for Kids, and a Gentle Nudge

Blog Pause Day 4: Welcome back to the fourth day of the 2015 Blog Pause!  Each day we're revisiting three favorite posts from the past year.  

Today's sampling of posts cover range from practical to heartwarming.  First, there's a glimpse into a nightly ritual that I never want to forget.  Second, I offer you a practical craft for you and your children.  Finally, I share how a gentle nudge can make all the difference between awkwardness to community.  Enjoy!

Same Love, Different Expression

Today, I'd simply like to record a small ritual -- a moment that ends every day in our household.  Each night when I tuck my younger daughters into bed, I sing a special I Love You song, one that I remember my parents singing to me.  And each night, my youngest cups her hands on my face while I sing, and she sings along with me.

We sing this nightly duet, the two of us, her sweet face just inches from my own, her sweet voice offering the daily reminder, "You're my mommy, You're my mommy, and I love you," and those sweet little sticky hands searching my face, touching my hair, and otherwise wheedling into my personal space.  We won't always sing this song to each other.  I already see it as I sit on the edge of my ten-year-old's bed each night.  (Continue reading here.)

Glass Gems + Nail Polish = Kid-Friendly Refrigerator Magnets

If I were to chronicle this winter season in a journal, this would be today's brief entry: Day 75 of winter. I forget what grass looks like.

We're worn thin with indoor activities; my girls have colored, painted, Play-Dohed, puzzled, and board-gamed themselves into the ground.  Still, winter hasn't let up, and we need fresh activities to keep ourselves occupied during the long hours indoors.  If you're in a similar situation, let me share a craft that should occupy your kids for an hour.  (Continue reading here.)

We Sometimes Need a Nudge

It's the third week of the semester, and my students and I are starting to feel more comfortable with the routine.  I sense this because each morning when I walk into the classroom, there's now a quiet hum of conversation between them.

It didn't start this way.  On the first day when I entered each new room, ready to distribute the thick stack of syllabi I carried in the crook of my arm, the students had been sitting in silence.  As a general rule, I have no qualms with silence if it's calming or contemplative.  But silence in a classroom on the first day of the semester rarely conveys that pleasantness; it's instead tinged with a mixture of awkwardness and tension.  (Continue reading here.)

See you tomorrow for Day 5 of the 2015 Blog Pause!

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