Being Thankful

thankfulAs we move towards the year’s harvest, my thoughts turn towards how we give thanks for the blessings we are surrounded by in our lives. Our family is very lucky to have an allotment where we can grow lots of lovely fruits and vegetables, and where we all learn about the skills and hard work needed to keep our plot going.  For us it is very immediate, we pick the potatoes, clean them up and cook them.  I am eternally thankful for this, I speak to too many young people who do not have this connection to their environment and the food they eat.

One way we can be thankful on a daily basis is to spend some time each day together. For us it is when we gather around the table to eat.  Whether this is weekend breakfast, our evening meal .  We talk about our day, the fun we have had, the plans we have and what we have to be thankful for.  Many families mark this time together around the table to be specifically thankful; by saying grace before they share a meal together.  This can be a specific poem or prayer or you can take it in turns to speak from the heart.  This can be an honest and often amusing moment if you allow the children to give thanks for their meal and the blessings in their lives.

Being able to focus on the positives in our lives; to be thankful for the acts of kindness they have witnessed, is of massive benefit to all concerned. It builds better relationships, promotes positivity, reduces aggression, and diminishes the effects of toxic emotions.  The enhancement to empathy and self-esteem improve the lives of our children and us, we will simply be happier.

On my newsfeed on FaceBook I see a lot of lovely blog articles from Mums and writers about being kind and thankful in our lives and relationships with our children.  On our online version of this page I have added links to some of my favourites as well as some Autumn crafts and seasonal fun.

I hope that you all have a happy, positive and thankful Harvest season.

With muddy blessings and toad filled love     Sam x

Coming out again.

My eldest is about to change school, she’s nearly 11 and will be starting High School in September. Over the last 6 years we have become comfortable with our relationship with the Primary School and our Paganism.  I have been in to school to do assemblies and talk to classes over the years and have a clear understanding with the Head about our expectations and our children’s choices.

Starting new relationships with her new school means coming out again. Forms have been filled in addressing our faith and dietary needs, emails have been sent and responded to about the requirement for all the girls to have a bible (as well as a dictionary and atlas), as an academic text only it turns out.  However, all of this adds to the stresses of starting a new school.  My daughter is already marked out as ‘other’.  The Senior Staff I have spoken to have all been lovely, in fact I have already been arm twisted to come and talk to the 6th formers about Pagan ethics at a ‘working lunch’, but it still remains that these conversations have to be had.  As fabulous as the school is, as brilliant and social as my daughter is she still starts her school career on an uneven footing, as a member of a minority.

So for all of us in the same position; negotiating our way through educating our children in main stream schools from within a minority faith group, lets stick together.