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KISS -“Keep It Spiritually Simple”- Want to Make a Difference?

im third

Who is the person or place that made a difference in your life? For me it’s Kanakuk Kamp. Every summer of my childhood my parents would send me to Kanakuk Kamp. I attended camp every summer for three weeks. Kanakuk Kamp is an Athletic Christian Camp where I was taught to own my faith and make a difference to others. The camp theme is “I’m Third”. – God FIRST – Others SECOND – I’m THIRD. This motto was threaded throughout all of the activities camp offered. Although it was an athletic camp you could usually find me in leather class where I made beautiful jewelry for myself and my friends. Hmmm…. still doing that! I learned to Keep It Spiritually Simple the I’m Third way.

God FIRST.  We have tried to instill this principle with our children. The kids are grown now but I feel confident knowing that as parents we guided them the “I’m Third” way. My husband and I tried to center our family around God FIRST. We reminded them everyday to be nice to everyone because everything you do matters good or bad we are all one. Now they can go through this world with a Spiritual lens if they choose.

Others SECOND. Family dinners at the kitchen table is a priority. This was not simple with three kids and their busy schedules however we made it work most of the time. The kitchen table is our family’s Spiritual hub where we encourage each other to make a difference to someone else. We not only say grace before dinner we listen to each other explain the highs and lows of the day, complete projects, decorate birthday signs and cakes, write thank you notes, cards and college essays and celebrate special occasions. This is where new traditions bloom and life lessons are taught. This is where we nourish our Spiritual souls together. 

I’m THIRD. This quote by William James – “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” Helps to remind me to be I’m THIRD.

 My 80 year old neighbor walks down my street and waits for her ride. She lives alone and has reluctantly given up driving. She struggles with this. Whenever I see her I take the time to wait with her. Sometimes I’m her driver. We go to art exhibits, Tai Chi class or to Holly Hill Farm where she volunteers. Whenever I’m with her I see life through a different lens. Last night she was walking down the street I asked her,” Where are you going?” She said, “I’ve been in my studio all day sculpting and really want to get out and walk to the bridge to see the sunset! Want to come?” I was thrilled because I had been in my studio feeling the same way. My dogs tail let me know the feeling was mutual. It was a gift to see this unforgettable sunset with such a special friend. We talked about art, faith and shared our views about the world and although they are very different we both agreed we are all ONE! God is First we need to act as ONE. Others are SECOND we need to take care of each other.  We are THIRD.

Keep It Spiritually Simple is simple not easy! Simple is using discipline and self-control to take the time to cook, volunteer, drive, walk or just listen to another person. This dedication opens up possibilities that can take the soul where you least expect it! Be on the look out for these opportunities they transform into gifts to you. This Thanksgiving sit at your “hub” and make a paper chain linking all the people and places you are grateful for that made a difference in your life. Hang it somewhere special. Chances are you are the link on someones chain. Happy Thanksgiving!

-KISS someone today by sharing

 

KISS “keep it so simple”- Hold on the tide will turn!

  
Balancing Wife, Motherhood and Work is definitely a challenge. Some days are better than others! Many times you feel pulled in so many directions you don’t know which way to go and giving up seems like a great option. I remember when my three year old bit at the gym Day Care. This equated to bye bye spinning class hello Weight Watchers. Feeling frustrated I bickered at my husband which in turn made me feel even worse than he did. The same day an account I was pursuing was not answering my calls. UGHH! I had just about had it and my patience was fading fast. However; I kept on plugging away and simply looked up and said a prayer. A little bit later I was poking around on the internet and this  beautiful quote popped up.

“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.”- Harriet Beecher Stowe.

It is so true. Because I had endured patience, looked up and didn’t get off course! This is how the rest of the day turned out.

Later that afternoon I was exercising in the basement with my son watching a video and he said,” I love you google!” It made me giggle and smile the rest of the day! Later that day my husband came home with a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Just because. My daughter and I took our time arranging them in my favorite vase that she had made for me in her art class. She explained,” I put a happy face on the vase because you are always happy!” I checked my messages and it was the account, he said, “We are very excited to place a large order of ek Jewelry!” He went on to apologize for not getting back to me. He had been out of the country.

 I do not believe that the reason the tide changed was a coincidence. I believe it was because I simply looked up, held on tight and powered forward. So remember when you feel you’re in a tight place know that if you hold on the tide will change and it will be worth it. The simple happy things are on their way! Whether you are giggling with your kids, arranging flowers with your daughter or celebrating a good day at work with your partner remember to slow down and cherish the simple things that life delivers to you unexpectedly. KISS “keep it so simple” be that person that makes someone else laugh when they want to cry. Be that person that brings flowers for no reason. Create a joyful surprise for someone else. It’s all about the joy you take in this journey of  life.

-KISS

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