Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Links and People that are Inspiration

Here is a SHORT list of People and organizations inspiring me right now:

The mission statement and difference that Educare WILL make in our country.

The dedication of the teens involved in Free the children

The beautiful voice and lullabies from the lovely and talented Amy Robbins Wilson.

EcoArt for kids from "Growing Up Creating"!

These people!!!!

to name just a few.....
Who is inspiring you?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Up and Running....sort of

So Little One is fighting sickness once again this winter. It's hard not to have a defeatist attitude. It's a hard time right now for my spirit and soul. I miss my family and feel guilty I can't visit with them more (it's a 300+ mile trip which works out to be a 6 hour + car drive). I know my parents miss me and wish I had never moved myself and their three grandsons so far away. As we all age it becomes that much harder for us all to travel.
Between car repairs, sickness and the different schedules of the five of us in this family...it is very difficult for me to jump in the mini-van and head south.

It doesn't mean I don't think of them every day.
So many times this week I thought of my Mom and Dad:

When I woke up before the boys and watched the sunrise and turn the sky pink, I thought of my Dad and how he used to tell me, "Pink skies/sailors beware".
When my youngest son made me stop and see the green tips of crocus peeking up, I thought of my Mom's love of Spring.

And just this morning when Little One found a photo of my Mom (taken when she was in HER thirties) and he held up the photo and said, "Mama, YOU are so beautiful."

I love and miss you Mom and dad. I hope you know that.
I know I am always busy and fail in so many ways as your daughter but I hope you know it is none of it is intentional.

Recently a friend of mine said, "You know Jennifer, you don't have to be perfect at everything."
I started crying. I don't? Oh thank goodness! I'm exhausted.
I wrote her words down on a piece of paper and keep it with me now. If I had a locket I would wear it around my neck.

How often do we beat ourselves up for not being "good enough"? I am guilty of this regularly. Even though I know it is in the mistake making that we achieve our greatest learning (to quote Dr. Montessori).

I've got to remind myself to pay closer attention to the children.

Children are so wise. The small people I spend my days with bring me so much joy but more than that they educate me daily. If I'm, paying attention.
This week I danced like a kangaroo, I didn't even know kangaroos liked to dance.
Well, I've gotta hop friends, peace and love to you.
PS: When time allows you stop by and visit our new web site zodiworks.com!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Thoughtful Thursday...

"Preventing conflicts is the work of politicians; establishing peace is the work of education."

- Maria Montessori

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Day Without Shoes

Tomorrow is A Day Without Shoes.

From the Day without Shoes web page:
We are asking people to go the day, part of the day or even just a few minutes, barefoot, to experience a life without shoes first-hand, and to help spread awareness of the impact a simple pair of shoes can bring to a child's life.

Through everyday encounters with domestic poverty, we are reminded to appreciate having food and shelter, but most of us all but forget about our feet. Food, shelter, AND shoes facilitate life’s fundamentals. Imagine a life without shoes; constantly aware of the ground in front of you, suffering regular cuts and scrapes, tending to infection after each walk, and enduring not only terrain, but heat and cold.
The problem is large, but the solution is simple. Wearing shoes and practicing basic hygiene can prevent both infection and disease due to unsafe roads and contaminated soil. By imagining a life barefoot, we can all contribute to the awareness of these conditions. On April 8th, communities, campuses, organizations, and individuals are banding together to walk barefoot for One Day Without Shoes.
Take a walk with us on April 8th, 2010.

--In some developing nations, children must walk for miles to school, clean water and to seek medical help.

--Cuts and sores on feet can lead to serious infection.

--Often, children cannot attend school barefoot.

--In Ethiopia, approximately one million people are suffering from Podoconiosis, a debilitating and disfiguring disease caused by walking barefoot in volcanic soil.

--Podoconiosis is 100% preventable with basic foot hygiene and wearing shoes.

Will you join me? Tomorrow: No Shoes. Start a conversation. Inspire another person. Make a difference.


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Spring!

(above: a sideways picture of our birthday walk mat from a child's 2nd birthday celebration)

Our Whole System:

Small as is our whole system compared with the infinitude of creation,

Brief as is our life compared with the cycles of time,

We are so tethered and all by the beautiful dependencies of law,

That not only the sparrow's fall is felt to the uttermost bound but the vibrations set in motion by the words that we utter

that reach through all space and the tremor is felt through all time.

~Maria Mitchell

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Conference Time

So obviously I did a bang up job of posting from the AMS Conference huh? Sorry to disappoint. We were so busy at our booth that I was unable to steal a bloggity moment away. Today and tomorrow we are having parent teacher conferences at school. I know I've said this before but it bears repeating.

I love meeting with parents and connecting about their amazing children. It feels so great to be on the same page. And I have so little time in my busy life to spend with my friends who are parents of young children, like myself, that when I a get the opportunity to commiserate with another parent I enjoy it greatly.

When there is a concern, we talk about it and it's out there you know, talked about and a plan is in place. It's reaffirming. Thank you Cornerspring parents for taking the time to meet with us teachers. It does us all some good, I think. Connecting all of our busy lives, even for a half hour of time, makes a wonderful difference.

Types for teachers:
*Provide snacks (include tea, it's a Montessori school after all)
*Dress nicely :)
*Provide reading materials for waiting families
*Promote your program (summer camp flies, open house advertising)
*Introduce parents to one another (just because you know everyone doesn't mean they know each other.)
*Play pretty music in the back ground (I do this because I like it, no other reason really.)
*Honor everyone's time, keep to a schedule and say this at the beginning of each conference to remind yourself as well as the parent that you will be ending on time.
*Present parents with their child's art work and explain the activity that lead up to it's creation. (so often we don't have the time to explain why we did something the way we did it )
*Show them photos of their child at play....(what parent doesn't love to see photos of their children?)

Happy Conferences!

Where in the World?


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