Recent Blog Posts

The Process of Becoming by Mary O'Connell

Mary writes: I am kneading dough and lost in thought. It is our last supper.  Our youngest child is leaving for college in the morning and has requested homemade pizza for her last dinner at home. As she heads upstairs to pack up the final boxes, I work the dough, wondering whether she has learned everything she needs to know before she heads out into the world, hoping she’ll meet people who are kind to her and who appreciate her for the unique and spirited person she is.

It’s funny, I remember as I add a little more flour to the dough, I was worried about these same things eighteen years ago when we sent our first child off to kindergarten. Was he ready? Would the world outside our home receive him with kindness? Some things never change, I guess. At each transition for all three of my children, I have fretted over the same things.

Presence in the Digital Age by Jaimmie Stugard

Our phones are now indelibly bound up with our aesthetic souls.

 And today, both are always on.” Robert Capps, WIRED

             A couple of years ago, my husband asked me what I wanted for Mother's Day.  I told him that all I wanted was to wake up in a tidy house and go to bed at night in a tidy house and that I did not want to clean on that particular Sunday.  He looked at me and said, “Can't I just get you a smart phone?” “No thanks,” I laughed,  “I don't need a distraction in my pocket.” Honestly, I was never really attracted to the device.  I learned to like my simple, small flip phone that made calls and received calls and not much more.   

Embrace the Hand that Feeds You by Jeremy Bucher

Miss Mary at Paradise FarmJeremy writes: At LifeWays we encourage the development of strong bonds and relationships between the children who attend the center and their peers, caregivers, and parents. In addition to these relationships we strive to reinforce a relationship between the children and their food. Just as important as the relationships that strengthen the community the child resides in, the relationship with their food provides both physical nourishment and nourishment of the soul, as well as an appreciation for the bountiful harvests that the planet allows us to produce.

FREE to be ME! by Jennifer Sullivan

Jennifer writes: A few weeks ago during a visit to my parents’ home, my oldest daughter was working contentedly with her Opa.  I was on the phone at the end of the driveway, when suddenly she walked towards me.  Making eye contact only briefly, she paraded past me with her chin up and a grin on her lips.  She defiantly walked down the sidewalk away from the house never so much as glancing towards me—and I let her go.  I let her go to see how far she needed to go. 

Burned. Out. By Jennifer Sullivan

I haven’t written an article in several weeks, and I have been blaming a writer’s block; I know exactly what I want to say and yet cannot seem to find the words.  Several days ago, however, I admitted the unspoken truth: I am burned out.  There, I said it (actually, I just got off a bit easier, since I wrote it…).  It is difficult for me to admit when I am in need of a break from my children.  Actually, I think that may have been one of only three times ever.  Ugh, I can barely even write that sentence.  What a horrible thing to say when I am so head-over-heels in love with each of them!  However, I need to remember that it is not really about taking a break from them, but rather, taking some time for myself.  After giving so much of ourselves, each and every one of us needs time to invest in some good ol’ self-care. 

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