I've been learning how to enjoy the simple things in life. Maybe this is something that everyone else enjoys and I've just been too complicated to appreciate it, but I'm starting to appreciate it now.
If you haven't noticed, we're in a slight economic slump. We're definitely feeling the pinch which means we're doing less in the way of big and more in the way of small. Out with the movies and in with the DVD player and some popcorn. Out with the zoo and in with exploring the bugs and plants around town. Out with expensive dance lessons and in with having a friend teach some girls for next to nothing.
But the small stuff has been so much more satisfying than the big stuff. Watching my children explore and discover ladybugs versus caged tigers has been wonderful. Swimming in the lake and watching ducks swim a few feet away has been much more exciting than swimming in a crowded pool (not that we don't mind the pool, of course).
Things like eating ice cream in the back yard and having it dribble down my chin and turning on the hose to cool us off has been such a joy in my life. Little conversations about the dreams my daughter has are priceless. Singing Jesus Loves Me with my son is so precious. Simple pleasures with my family are worth so much more than the big vacations and big toys and fancy things.
Do I wish we had a big pool? Of course, it's 100 degrees outside. But maybe not having a pool is a blessing in disguise because the memory of the kids turning the hose on me is sure to outlast a memory of me trying to keep their heads above water in a big pool.
And maybe going to the zoo and museums all the time would be nice and educational...but now I get to teach them about bugs and flowers and gardens. We get to study robots together and pretend and play. That education is worth much more than anything a museum will teach.
The little thing - why don't you give them a try, too. I think you'll appreciate them in a whole new way.