Soft windy air swirling feeling wonderful on my skin, not accustom to the sun. The sky is full of billowing Spring clouds backed by bright blue. As I walk with my dog Cinnamon around our neighborhood into balmy winds, I find myself pondering as I often do on walks. I ponder how long we will live in our current house, thinking of the wonderful schools my children go to and will go to in the very near future. I ponder where I lived as a child and my friends’ homes, realizing that none of their parents live in my friend’s childhood homes any longer.
“Um, I wonder how long until we can move, if we choose to do so, until the kids are through school?” I find myself thinking such thoughts for the first time…
And I realize that eleven years is the answer. Eleven years until my youngest graduates from high school. That is not really very long. Eleven years ago I had a newborn baby, I was a new mom. My life completely turned upside down as I started on this path of raising kids. And it hits me, that I am in the middle. In the middle of what I think of as hardcore parenting. The kind of parenting when you have to literally be ready for anything at any moment. Over the past couple of years I watched this mile stone coming. I knew it would get here and probably arrive sooner than I wanted it too. I still see my youngest as a very small child yet when I come home from teaching at the preschool, I can’t help but see her growing into a big girl, a girl who is changing so fast, and quickly loosing all those last vestiges of toddlerhood. My oldest is set on the edge of blooming into a teenager which is almost mind-boggling as well as completely beautiful.
I am in the middle.
The middle of motherhood.
The middle of life.
From here I can see my past particularly through the lens of my own motherhood, I see my childhood and I grow. I learn those lessons I missed and change. I appreciate more my own parents and my life. Of course I can’t see the future yet I feel myself letting go of the desire to fix everything and make it all as it should be. Rather I want to let things be and experience. I am in the middle and excited to experience the ride from here.
Shadows climb up
the garden wall
Upon the green
the first leaf falls
It’s the prime of life
and the king and queen
Step out into the sun…
…It’s the prime of life,
where the spirit grows
And the mirror
shows both ways
~ Neil Young
Shared On: The Sunday Parenting Party
Last year I made these silly centering Meditation Friends with the kiddos at the preschool. We had so much fun that we decided to make them again but with a new twist to make them even more engaging and personable. Just like last year started our day reading Peaceful Piggy Meditation which introduces the idea of a meditation jar. On we went from there to make our own special meditation jars with personality!
These helpful friends are based on an activity at the end of this amazing, fun book. My six-year-old loves this book. We re-read it often when she is going through a hard time in her life and it seems to really speak to her.
New to the idea of a meditation jar? Here is how it works ~
A meditation, or mind jar, is a jar filled with liquid, like water and glitter. The child shakes the jar which sends the glitter spinning and spiraling. The glitter is like a busy mind, and mind full of thoughts maybe even negative thoughts that swirls and feels crazy. Has the glitter settles down and the child watches it breathing deep into their belly, they can focus on the glitter and let their mind settle down.
These new kids on the block have a special something added to them~ we created layers in the bottle by adding oil colored with a bit of food coloring to the water. This makes it take longer for the contents to settle down giving the child more time to breathe and calm down. It also makes the liquid a bit more sparkly.
What you need to make your own ~
- Bottle or Jar with water tight lid (I used plastic water bottles to prevent breakage but glass would work fine as well.)
- Food Coloring
- Glitter or Glitter Glue (Glitter glue will make it take longer for the “thoughts” to settle down. Use warm water if you choose to use glue)
- Googly Eyes
- Decorations (We used peel and stick foamies)
- Ribbon or Yarn
- Fabric Scraps
- Hot Glue Gun
- Fill the bottle half/half with water/oil, or you can vary the amounts ~ we did more water than oil with our friends.
- Ask the child to pick out their favorite color from the food colors and add a drop or two to the bottle. The oil and water, of course, won’t mix and the food coloring will color one layer giving you a nice contrast and making it more exciting to shake the meditation friend and to watch it settle down.
- Next add glitter or glitter glue and secure the bottle shut.
- Then have the child decorate their bottle to look like a face with googly eyes and any other materials you have on hand. I like to use peel and stick foamies because, well, they are easy! You can also glue on the face but plan for drying time and that the faces may fall of fast.
- Finally give the new friend a hat by securing a piece of cloth on top of the bottle with hot glue and ribbon or yarn.
Shared On: It’s Playtime!, Kid’s Coop, Kid’s Get Arty
Categories: Lesson Plans For Preschool And Home, Meditation And Yoga, Mindful Self Care, Parenting
Tags: children, emotional awareness, healthy emotions and kids, kids, kids and meditation, meditation, mind jar, motherhood, parenting