I can't quite put my finger on it, but its like time stands still where i am there. Its the most beautiful and healthy place to be. As i sit there beaming at my beautiful niece as she struts her stuff and guides her pig, I think to myself, these are MY kind of people. Now i know they may have fancy iphones in their pockets or might text when no one is looking, but i like to imagine that they don't. These kids are up early and working hard. My niece and nephew and sister work so hard to prepare for this even each year and i am just in awe of it.
People don't put as much emphasis on hard work as they used to (i like to think hard is synonymous with healthy). Especially for kids. In case any of you don't know, i am a HUGE advocate of 4-H because i like what it teaches kids. And that is a lost art. Kids get their hands dirty in 4-H, they contribute as part of the community. Community. That word is so foreign to so many people. We are all so busy in our own little lives with our own little agendas, that we forget about our neighbor. We just don't have time to stop and help a friend anymore.
Every year at the 4th of July i get a little extra patriotic and start to re-evaluate life and our choices and our priorities. In fact it was this year around that time that i started listening to country music again. I know alot of people don't like it, but i think that the roots of our country are in that music. I love hearing about hard work, strong love, loyalty, and community. Its what i think we are losing as a nation. I know its a big statement, but when did i ever say i didn't make those? :)
I can feel life pulling me into the grips of "busy" this Summer and i refuse to give in to it. I will not be that Mom who is defined by her schedule. In fact, i want to be defined by my lack of schedule. That doesn't mean that we'll watch tv and lay around all day. It means that we busy our hands outside and learn about taking care of animals and a garden and our yard. But i want to emphasize this...i want to take care of my things, but by no means do i love them. They are, after all, still just things. I want to teach my kids to work hard and do their best, but not let those things that they are caring about define them. I have said it before and i will say it until i die, life is about relationships. I believe that 110% and i will never think otherwise. If we don't have strong roots in our faith, our families, our friendships or our communities and churches, then what do we have?
I want my kids to be faithful, obedient, servants. That's why i get so passionate around the 4th. Its a time spent with my family. Its about building relationships without any distractions. Its about slowing down. For Pete's sake people, slow down. If we would just embrace a slower pace, we might build a lasting foundation that can withstand any storm. That's what i want. I want roots that run deep.