Friday, September 5, 2014

Let Your Kids Know: The World is Beautiful

Hi Everyone!

Everyday I listen to the news. Sometimes, it's only for a quick 30 minutes in the morning, and sometimes, I launch my NPR: One app on my phone and just let it play all day. I listen in order to be informed and up to date because well...I don't want to be the person that doesn't know what's going on in Iraq, Syria, or Ukraine or even what's happening in my own country. As I listen to the stories and experiences of so many others in what seem like other worlds I'm often struck by the thought that I can't believe we live in a world still where people are being beheaded, where morality is being confused with religion and where children are denied polio vaccinations because of the uneducated and misinformed ideas about Western Civilization.

The trouble is that these are all ideas which were not born of 21st century origins. Henry VIII beheaded two of his wives and was responsible for the beheading of countless others as well. Any average student of history knows that beheading, while gruesome, was a common occurrence throughout the middle ages. People have been sacrificing, killing and waging war in the name of religion since the beginning of time, and not just the Muslims. Judaism, and Christianity have had their gloves in the ring many times as well; and there's always been a mystery and misinformation for many "on the other side" of the world about Western cultures and civilizations. As people living far after the time of Henry VIII's rage against Anne Boleyn and The Crusades, I think we tend to look back on these events in history in a somewhat complacent way: "They were awful...people got beheaded...that sucked...oh well, that was then, this is now. What's for dinner?" I can't help but wonder if people hundreds of years from now will look back upon our current time in the world and have the same thoughts.

Anyhow, while I struggle in my own mind with the current state of the world, I am truly grateful that little corner of the world I live in is a place of happiness, and beauty. I am glad that my two youngest children are just happy and enjoying life, completely oblivious to the evils that lurk "out there." The lessons will come, both through school and education as well as life and experiences. My oldest daughter is at an age where she is learning many of those lessons as she navigates her way through her teenage years.

Last weekend we were able to go to a local pond and feed the ducks, and just spend some time together. As I walked around photographing the boys and their attempts to get the ducks to eat out of their hands, and the other beautiful scenery around the pond, and eating ice cream together afterwards, I thought to myself how glad I was that this is what my children see, that this is what they get to experience. Sometimes it's a busy life, sometimes it's complicated.
Sometimes the world is harsh and ugly: but there's always something beautiful waiting to be found.

Now it's your turn: Tell me something beautiful you've discovered or experienced recently with your children. Leave me a comment below. Be sure to link your blog or website if you have one, so I can come and visit you as well!

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