Monday, June 30, 2008

It's the little things ...

Yesterday, I was helping my boys clean up their playroom and I came across a "toy" (I use the term loosely) that would look more at home in the trash. It is a lumpy-looking oblong piece of heavy paper, colored brown, with a small hole punched in one end where a piece of ribbon is tied to it. And yet, we overlooked this funky-looking item and threw out (or donated) several other toys that seemed more worthy of salvage.

Why are we keeping this thing that looks like a turd on a string? Because it is "The Flying Potato." My older son made it as a gift for my younger son. For reasons that I can't fathom, they both like to run around the house with this paper potato flying after them. My oldest is proud that his little brother likes the toy; my younger son is happy that his older brother took the time to create something especially for him.

It is easy for me to forget that life is made up of a series of little interactions like this one. At times, I want so much to teach my boys about science and life that I forget to take it one step at a time. Looking at a leaf together is enough; I don't always need to drag out an identification guide or scour the internet to determine the plant's life history. There's a time and a place for research, but there also should be time to just sit and experience life together -- one potato at a time.

Enjoy your potatoes today!

Photo credit: Leon Brooks,

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