As the news streaming into my world becomes more and more politically charged, I am feeling a deeper need to be mindful of how much time I spend on the computer. It's easy for me to get sucked in, to spend my free time obsessed and absorbed in current events.
I need a break from screens, from news, from the chatter. I need to breathe.
And so a couple of days ago when Lupine asked me if we could go on a walk, I was so glad. It's been an unseasonably warm January that doesn't call me out to play. It's gray. It's mud. It's ice. I've been sitting inside for days.
And I was glad to say yes and tie on my boots.
And as we walked our road, weaving through this valley we found so much to be grateful for. For me, mostly, it was time with her. Time to just be together, just the two of us. To talk and connect.
No politics to read, no chore list to attend to, just fresh air and motion.
As we walked and visited, she decided that it would be fun to about bake some cookies before dinner. So we headed home.
She baked the cookies without assistance, and as she pulled the last tray from the over she counted them, quietly whispering names to herself. "Perfect! We have just enough," she announced.
"Enough for what?" I asked.
"For all of our neighbors," she replied.
Her hour-long before bed project wasn't for our family at all – it was for our neighbors (including one we have yet to meet.)
Because the joy of making something to give away is greater than the joy of keeping that sweetness for yourself.
What a beautiful reminder that is.
Yesterday I came from work 1/2 hour early to help her with deliveries. She wrapped and labeled and bagged up her secret treats, then we headed out on another walk together. (This one with a covert mission.)
We were joined by one of her neighbor friends who helped us deliver the sweet little bundles, all up and down this little road, and we even managed to slip one into her mailbox without being seen. (Extra stealth points!)
And then we headed home with full hearts, neither of us wishing that there were extra cookies for us at home. Because giving them away was more sweetness than eating them could have ever been.
These kids have so much to teach us, don't they? I can only hope that I am as giving as this for the rest of my days.
Keep your hearts open, my friends. Let's all take care of each other.