Featured Local Business

Most Read: Parent Tips

A Salute to Special Olympics

Last December Cierra Winn swept her long chestnut hair over ... Read more

Changing for the Better

Early on a recent Sunday morning near Kids’ Cove at Mo... Read more

Growing Up Gardening

Finding time to play outside is a challenge for today’... Read more

Doulas on Duty

You’re a few months along in your pregnancy and beginn... Read more

Getting Better with Art

The inpatient playroom at the Children’s Hospital of the Kin... Read more

Set Sail with Sea Scouts

Something exciting is happening in Tidewater. Here, where th... Read more

A Heart for Kids

After a successful battle with cervical cancer, Tracy LaGatt... Read more

My Mentor, My Friend

Kids need adult role models to look up to and trust. Parents... Read more

Connecting with Horses

In this more-than-one-horse town, kids and adults take pleas... Read more

Kiddies & Kitties

There is nothing so heartwarming as when a family visits an ... Read more

Parenting with No Regrets

My son just turned 18, so he is no longer legally a child. I... Read more

Learning from WHRO

When my oldest was six, he came to me with a cape and a pict... Read more

A Gift of Life

At the age of five, Shutong Hao (“Tong Tong”) had already un... Read more

Explore the World with NATO

When NATO Festival organizers realized Luxembourg would be t... Read more

Tips for Kids Dining Out

Going out to eat with your children should be a relaxing and... Read more

Growing with Gymnastics

Gymnastics is a sport of strength, dexterity, and grace, a s... Read more

Sea and Sky

Dear Friends, I was lucky to grow up on the shores of Sandb... Read more

Is Your Child on Track?

From birth to 5 years, your child should reach milestones in... Read more

Eating on a Budget

Get the most for your food budget! There are many ways to sa... Read more

Hit the Pause Button: Read

One of my favorite photographs is a picture of my mom readin... Read more

2014 Nov

The World Can Wait

Parents have it rough these days. So much to do. So little time. Then there are all the distractions of modern life. It’s nearly impossible to be still and tune into the present moment. Meditating seems like a good idea, but actually doing it? Sitting still and doing nothing? Really? 

Actually, meditating isn’t as hard as you might think. And it doesn’t require a big chunk of time. Just try turning off your monkey mind for a minute or two. Find a quiet place where you won’t be distracted, sit in a comfortable position, close your eyes, and just listen to your breath. If you can’t find a quiet place, then just take a moment wherever you are and be still and breathe. Try breathing in through your nose and then out through your mouth. Pause at the end of your inhale before you exhale. Listen to the sounds around you. Just. Be.

We all need to make time for stillness and quiet meditation. Even more importantly, we need to teach our children to escape from the magnetic pull of electronic devices and find pleasure in simple things, like doing a puzzle in a quiet room. Silence soothes the soul, and we can all use some soothing, right? 

Playing with simple toys—like wooden blocks or coloring—has the added benefit of encouraging creativity and concentration without the sensory overload which accompanies electronic games and gizmos.

Of course, handing your child an iPad to play with is easy to do. Maybe you’re on the phone or answering an email when your son or daughter wants some attention. Letting your child play a video game or watch TV buys you a little time, right? But time is fleeting, and spending time with your children, especially when they are little, is the greatest gift you can give. Hang up the phone, turn off your computer, and let your little one have your undivided attention. Just. Be. Together. The world can wait.

Time is a precious resource, and managing time can be difficult in this fast-paced world. Soon the holidays will be here and things will get even crazier. Take a moment now to consider ways you can be mindful this month. Make play dates with your kids to enjoy old-fashioned fun together. Get a craft book from the library and spend a cozy afternoon making holiday decorations. Grab a cookbook and choose a recipe for holiday cookies or healthy muffins. Make a shopping list with your little one, and then shop for the ingredients together. An afternoon of baking rewards you both with quality time. Plus you are teaching your kids to enjoy the simple pleasures of life.

Sure, there are things we have to do—like go to work, do laundry, and pay bills. But don’t get distracted by unimportant things—like Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter, for example. Your kids need you now. One day you’ll wake up, and they won’t be kids any more. You’ll look back at these precious years when they were little and remember the times that you stopped and gave them what they wanted more than anything else in the world—the precious gift of you.

Love, Peggy

Peggy Sijswerda

Peggy Sijswerda is the editor and publisher of Tidewater Family Plus magazine. She has an MFA in creative nonfiction from Old Dominion University and is the author of Still Life with Sierra, a travel memoir. Peggy also freelances for a variety of regional, national, and international magazines.

Website: www.peggysijswerda.com

Enter to Win a FREE Subscription to Tidewater Family Plus Magazine

We're hosting an extra year-end giveaway and are excited to gift 5 FREE subscriptions to both Tidewater Family Plus Magazine, a $20.00 value! Entering is...

Free to Enter!