Sunday, May 1, 2011

Take Time to Stop and Smell the Flowers!

Okay, first of all - I don't really like the smell of flowers. :)
Second, I don't have any time.
Third, the word "Stop" is not in my vocabulary.

That's right - you guessed it.  I have never stopped to smell the flowers - literally or figuratively ;)

For the last 4 years (okay maybe longer) my life has been so busy, so crazy, so stressful, so complicated and so insane, that I haven't stopped for much of anything. 

Since moving across the country I have been trying to make some changes. Life here is still busy, crazy, stressful, complicated and insane. However, I have found that you can still make time to smell the flowers.

One day a couple of weeks ago I took Hazel on a little date.  She had been wanting some alone time since her brothers get a lot of attention,  so I told her I would take her for ice cream.  Paige and the boys dropped us off at Wendy's to get a frosty and we were just going to walk home. 

I had an appointment that I had to be at so I was a little stressed about walking and that it would take too long, but we did it anyways.  We started walking and talking and it was a lot of fun to just not be in a giant rush.  As we walked, every flower we saw Hazel wanted to stop and smell it.  My old self would have just said that we didn't have time and rushed her along.  It is strange that I had to consciously tell myself "it's okay, you can take 2 seconds to smell the flowers".   It is so easy with so much going on in our lives to really think we don't have time to do these little things.  Things that seem unimportant to us, but are so important to our children, spouse, friend, etc.  There are many things that we should probably be doing to help others instead of always focusing on ourselves or our own busy lives.  Over the years I have tried to still make time to help others when needed, etc. But somehow, these tiny things never made the cut. 

So, we stopped every 10 seconds and smelled flowers all the way home.  Hazel was SO happy and LOVED looking at all the different colored flowers and smelling each one.  Now - everywhere we go she does it too.  Each time I have to tell myself it is okay to stop - but it is getting easier.  :)

Watering the flowers at Cousin's house
One of my favorite new stories!  We drive everywhere on the golf cart. (We just got a car on Thursday but still drive the cart as much as we can.)   I have LOVED this.  When you drive in a car, you are in a rush, the kids can't see outside very well and you are just driving next to businesses, etc.  However, in the cart, it is a whole different world.  As we drive to Brain Balance we drive through the forest.  We see birds, bunnies, squirrels, trees, grass, lakes, streams, bridges and tunnels.  It is beautiful and amazing.  I love that the kids are just out in nature experiencing things rather than strapped in a car.  I love that Wyatt NEVER tries to get out of his seat belt on the cart like he does in the car. 

Anyways, so lately as we drive Hazel yells "dandelion" every time she sees one.  She is always referring to the white ones that you can blow on.  I am not sure where she learned about them - maybe in preschool?  But it wasn't something that we had done before.  She always wants me to stop and I usually say we can on the way back (so we aren't late to Brain Balance) but then we always seem to forget.  So this week we were on our way back and I told Hazel if she saw a dandelion, I would stop and get it for her.  She found one!  I stopped, reversed and picked it for her.  I LOVE what happened next. 

As I was handing the flower to Hazel, Wyatt tried to grab it from me and blow on it!  It was SO cute!  I don't know why I was surprised because he is a little genius.  I am sure that he knows about 10 million times more than I think he does.  However, since we have never stopped and picked dandelions and we had never blown on them, I was just surprised that he knew what to do!  Hazel was NOT happy that Wyatt was trying to steal her flower, so I gave it to her and went and got another one for Wyatt.  He grabbed it and blew on it and it was so cute!  They kept wanting more so we stopped every couple of minutes (or as soon as someone saw one) and picked the dandelions and blew on them.  The kids LOVED it!  It made me SO happy to see Wyatt reaching for them each time and really wanting to do it.  He had fun and had a new experience and it was one he never could have had if we were rushing down the highway in our car. 

Here is a picture and then check out the video!  The first one he did really well, but needed a little help on this one.  I Just think it is cute how his little mouth looks when he is trying to blow :)
Blowing on the Dandelions!


You hear the saying that "Life is Short" and it is.  Time does go by so fast.  There is so much to do.  So many lessons, baseball games, school things, church things, family things, etc.   As I think about it, Hazel probably had more fun smelling the flowers than she would have had doing any of the things listed above.  I believe that the little things are the things people remember.  Not just our children, but all of us.  I am sure many of you have had someone take time out of their busy life and do one little tiny act of kindness for you.  Even though it may have seemed small, it meant the world to you. 

I am slowly learning my lesson.  I am trying to slow down (while still going fast), I am trying to simplify (while still living a complicated life), but it can be done.  I just have to take it one flower at a time :)



  1. That's just what I needed to hear tonight. Thanks Tam - oh and now I'm crying. Goodnight special sister, I hope tomorrow is a good day filled with lots of dandelions!

  2. I needed that reminder! Thanks for being such a great example!