This Summer…

 

I get the most out of my summer vacation by “doing” the least. I get the most of my summer vacation by simply being — by simply “spending” hours.

“Spend the afternoon, you can’t take it with you.” That’s what Annie Dillard said.

~ Jennifer Dukes Lee

This summer, I plan to do as little as possible. Forget the projects, activities, scheduled events and the clock. I just want to spend my time enjoying life, family, and all the beauty around us every day.

I will accomplish very little, but enjoy every moment I can, and spend as much time as I can doing nothing.

This summer, I want to fill my hours and days with laughter, love, and just “being”.

What about you?

 

(Edited To Add: This post over at Simple Mom is all about embracing summer!)

 

Photo Credits:  Photo 1   Photo 2  Photo 3  Photo 4
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Wife, Mother… Artist

I realize that title is probably making you think of paints and canvases and a huge mess, like you remember from art class when you were a kid. And while that is usually the first thing that comes to mind when the word ‘art’ is mentioned, this post is not necessarily about finger-painting or making clay sculptures with your kids.

Lately, I’ve come across various articles and blog posts dealing with the idea of creating beauty in our lives. And I’ve realized that no matter who you are, where you live, or what your circumstances are, everyone has the ability to create beauty and be an artist.

After all, that’s what an artist is: someone who creates beauty. And there are myriads of ways of being an artist.

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As mothers, we have more opportunities to be artists than most people. Creating beauty not only enriches our own experience, but also the lives of everyone around us. Simple things we can do every day have the power of changing the way our families see life and the world around them.

Picking a bouquet of wildflowers and arranging them in a pretty vase can add instant colour and life to a home and make everyone who walks by smile inside without even realizing it.

Lighting a scented candle, or playing beautiful music throughout your day can drastically change the level of palpable joy and comfort your family experiences in your home.

And there are more radical ways of creating beauty in your lives. Laughter, or just a simple smile, can turn someone’s day around. Sharing a good story, baking cookies, taking a long walk on a warm evening, singing a song, holding your child’s hand, opening a window, planting a garden… all of these are simple things, but when shared with those you love, they can change the way your family will remember the past.

And by giving them, and yourself, beautiful memories, you are also creating beauty in the future, not just the present. Motherhood is an amazing thing, isn’t it?

And the easiest way to create beauty? Just. slow. down.

Look around and let the beauty you see everywhere around you enter your heart, not just your eyes.

Just slowing down can give you instant beauty and joy.

By continually finding new ways to add joy to the lives of everyone we love, and in seeing the joy in their eyes, we find joy ourselves in the knowledge that we helped them see a little more beauty in life.