Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Givers

 Hello, Smiley!  I'm old enough to remember when smiley faces began to appear on buttons (badges) and balloons.  Even one of my dad's campaign buttons had a smiley face.  Do you love emoticons?  I do.  I adore stickers, too.  I am going to leave early for work so I can stop and buy some stickers.  
 I have this song running through my head, "This day, this day look up and LIVE!  This earth can't hold me down . . . "  
 I'm thinking about gifts.  They (whoever THEY are) say you should never refuse a gift from a child.  Yesterday a student offered me the last half of his cookie.  I really should have said yes and thank you, but I told him that I'd already eaten my cookie for the day (I had).  Next time, I'll take the gift.

 This is Plum Cake last year when she appeared just before my birthday.  Aw!  Her birthday party is this Sunday! One year old!  What a great birthday!

Did you know that your life is meant to be given away?  When we don't have opportunities to share ourselves, we get pretty bummed out.  You don't have to sign up to go to a foreign country and do good deeds (although this is a very lovely thing to do), you can simply keep your eyes peeled for ways to share yourself.  Sometimes it is giving someone your undivided attention, focusing in on them and their talking.  Sometimes it is a quick text message to tell a friend that you are thinking about them.  Maybe it is going to that party or gathering that really doesn't sound fun, because it shows that you're faithful in the small things.  What can we do?  How can we help?  My mom's generation knew (and know) how to help others.  They worked in the church kitchen.  They started organizations to help children and the elderly.  They were "room mothers" who coordinated school parties.  My mom painted scenery for my fourth grade play.  She made cheerleading skirts for my sisters and me (and some of the other girls, too!) Mr. Rogers said that when hard things happen in the world, that's when you recognize "the helpers" because they come forward and offer their lives.  Little (and BIG!) acts of kindness and faithfulness do not go unnoticed, they matter.

Some of our gifts are small but small gifts are often the best.  I tend to get muddled of mind and dash through my day and my dinner AND my evenings.  I KNOW my life is meant to be given away.  Tonight we have conferences at school with parents whose children are already behind with their work.  Instead of printing out their grade reports (bad news), I am going to write their name on a 4 by 6 card, add some stickers and before I write their percentage on the card, I am going to list some of their attributes.  After I put the grade on the card, I'm going to write down some life-giving reading and writing suggestions that they can do to improve their grasp on language arts.  I'll let you know how it works.
When my father-in-law retired and sold his restaurant, he took up golf but he also started visiting people.  He learned to make pies and he took apple pies to his friends.  Sometimes his friends would knit him dishcloths or give him bags of vegetables from their gardens.  He was such a good giver.  
I hope you see the opportunity (even if it is very tiny) to give of yourself today.  I know I miss more opportunities than I recognize, so I pray we have eyes to see our chances.
Somebody would like to have a little bit of you.


Debi said...

I'm like you, I miss more opportunities than I recognize. And I also have good intentions that I don't always follow up on... and you know what they say about good intentions!

Fat Dormouse said...

What a great way to affirm that your students are important, even if they are struggling in some aspects of their work. You are truly giving of yourself - because I bet it's going to take quite a bit of your time to do this for each one.
God bless you.

Left-Handed Housewife said...

Wonderful post, Pom, and a great reminder about how even small gifts make a difference. Thank you!


Farm Girl said...

That is very insightful and very profound. Thank you for the reminder.
I always see you as that kind of giver. I can't believe that beautiful girl is already going to be one year old.
You are going to be as old as me now. :)
Have a wonderful day today.

Gumbo Lily said...

I hope God shows me ways to be a good Giver. Thank you for sharing this. YOU are a good giver.

TexWisGirl said...

the half-eaten sweet.

cards4ubylouise and other treasures said...

And the greatest "giver"....Jesus! He gave his life for us that we might live!!!

I love that "life lesson" that little boy gave you about a cookie. He sure had a generous spirit, didn't he.

Lisa Richards said...

You've come up with a great idea to encourage your struggling students! I hope they will see how valuable they are.

Good post! Thanks for your insight.

Attic Clutter said...

oh what a cool guy ..your was(:)
have a great day...Pom

magsmcc said...

I'm so often so glad that you give of yourself more than just a little bit, Pom Pom- thank you! That idea of the cards for your students- priceless, significant, life-enriching stuff xx

ann said...

I do like your dad's idea of retirement and i love the idea of gift giving, giving of yourself. Yes, next time take the cookie. Save it for later.

libbyquilter said...

a great post. i too hope to be quick to recognize my opportunities for the giving of myself . . . thank you for reminding me to be vigilant in this.

wishing you a happy birthday as well as that beautiful grandbaby.


M.K. said...

What an excellent reminded, Pom. And you know what? In this very post, you have done just what you advise! You could have written a shallow post, or simply not written at all. Instead, you chose to GIVE to us, to give a part of yourself, your thinking, your wisdom, your own plans to give joy instead of sorrow. May God bless your desires to do so.

Nancy McCarroll said...

Thank you for this reminder of giving. I often forget, or feel imposed upon. I 'll look up some scriptures on giving and pray about this.

Upon reflection, sometimes I feel smug in giving. Now that is an eye opener.

♥ Tina said...

YOU are such a good giver, PP. Thank you for this wonderful post, so full of kindness, inspiration and wisdom. I love your idea for your student's report...what a kind and loving teacher they have! I hope I meet you one day so I can give you a big squeezy hug!

Love, Tina xxx

Tassell, Tea pot, and life down under said...

Beautiful post PomPom, a lot of us need reminding. Wow it's your birthday soon and your little grand baby. You are surrounded with love at home and at school.

Have a blessed week.