“There is a cost to a hurried life sans rest stops. And there is a richness to a more deliberate pace.” Jeff Goins
Life can be hectic and busy at the best of times, but life as a parent can get frantically busy.
We have so many different things competing for our time and attention. There are errands to run, places to be, and extra curricular activities to fit into our overcrowded schedules. On top of that there are the endless demands of our homes and gardens. Then there is the approaching holiday season.
The trouble is when we live frantic lives we can end up moving through life in fast-forward mode. Which really isn’t much of a life at all.
Our lives are not a race to the end. They are journeys of wonder that should be savoured and enjoyed.
If we can slow down just a little perhaps we can start to enjoy that journey with our families. Families that slow down tend to
- Experience less stress
- Enjoy a greater sense of creativity
- Learn to appreciate the small things in life
- Have the space to develop deeper relationships
An effective way for families to slow down is to make some space for a slow activity, something that can’t be rushed. One such activity is planting. You simply cannot hurry a seed. It will germinate and grow at it’s own pace. You can’t really hurry a garden either. It will develop and evolve over time.
Planting is also a really fun thing to do with children. There is something almost magical about germination that delights and amazes them. And you get to play in the dirt! It doesn’t get better than that!
This is the perfect time of year to plant something.
- If you are living in the southern hemisphere you are right in the middle of the growing season and I am just a tad jealous!
- If you are living in the northern hemisphere there is still time to plant bulbs.
- If you don’t have a garden try planting something in a pot. It works just as well.
When you go to plant encourage your children to pause for a moment and hold the seed or bulb in their hand. Express amazement that everything the plant needs to grow is contained in that one tiny seed or bulb. Wonder how big the plant will grow. Imagine what it will look like. While you are planting invite your children to talk about previous experiences of planting and growing seeds. You might ask
- How long did it take the plants to grow?
- What was the first sign that the plant was growing?
- How can we help the plant to grow?
When planting with your children remember to keep it simple. If you are planting a garden it doesn’t have to be picture perfect. It doesn’t have to be a huge project. In fact a few plants are better than none. While you are planting release the pressures of everyday life for a brief moment. Just treasure the precious moments with your children and enjoy a slower pace of life for a little while.
Some resources to help you
Dirt and Boogers posted The Beginner’s Guide to Planting with Kids.
It has all kinds of helpful advice and links.
Houzz posted Gardening with Kids: How to Plant Bulbs. It gives you some interesting information and has some amazing pictures.
So tell me what will you plant this week? In what ways do you find that gardening helps you to slow down and simplify your life?