How do we inspire our kids to be more grateful?Nov. 4th

PP Question_NOVGratitude rock

So, in today’s modern world, how do you inspire children to grow up with an attitude of gratitude instead of an “attitude”, if you know what I mean? Many psychologists have studied gratitude and its effects on our well being.  People who are more grateful seem to lead more satisfying lives and are more resilient in a crisis or under pressure. I for one definitely want that for my whole family! Rudolf Steiner, known for creating Waldorf Education, said this “Gratitude is the basis for love. When children deepen their appreciation for the natural world, they deepen their love for all of creation.”  An easy way to start is to simply as your kids,  “What are three things you are grateful for today?”  Or, for younger ones, try a rhyme or a song that appeals to you. Giving thanks before a meal is another powerful way to inspire gratitude. Here’s a sweet one for the younger kiddos:

Umbrella

 

The eagle gives thanks for the mountains,

The fish gives thanks for the sea

We give our blessings for the food
We are about to receive.

 

 

We’d love to hear your ideas, as different ideas appeal to children as they grow and develop into adults.

For more resources, check out “G=Gratitude Attitude” in our Simple as A-B-C’s.

Grateful Monday: 10 of the best quotes about gratitudeApr. 27th

GRATITUDEpp

“Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh    

“In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.”
Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia    

“Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”
Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose    

“My expectations were reduced to zero when I was 21. Everything since then has been a bonus.”
Stephen Hawking

“Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.”
Alphonse Karr, A Tour Round My Garden    

“When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears.”
Anthony Robbins  

“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings…”
William Arthur Ward

“[Gratitude] turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
Melody Beattie

“What separates privilege from entitlement is gratitude.”
Brené Brown

“In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer

 

this list was procured via GoodReads

Grateful MondayApr. 20th

Can you imagine the earth with no buds on the trees, flowers blooming, a bird’s nest, a baby’s giggle, a child learning to jump?

Tha-whump

Today is a grateful day, a day for remembering these things, and the millions more.

Gratitude settles in and destroys anxiety, like magic. But a magic unlike the magician provides, with trap doors and slight of hand. It’s real and lasting and can appear with a simple stop to look.

Every day is a grateful day, a day for remembering these things that soothe your soul, the things that create a hole in the ribs for the bees to escape.

Then they go out, they make honey, and it is sweet.

Grateful MondayMar. 30th

The littlest things can be noted, even on paper, at the end of the day.

The way the wind blew away the cloudy day, the curtain pulled back, the sun warming us up. And then I stood in the doorway and let the warmth settle in, soaking through my vitamin D deprived skin. I stood there a good long while.

The way I had time to set aside the to-do list(s), for just a little while, and watch Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

And finding new-to-me music accidentally, to love like crazy, even though I wonder how I missed it when everyone else discovered it.

It really is about the little things…let’s look at them, maybe even write them down.

Gratitude Monday: The Gift of the Magi by O’HenryDec. 9th

The_Gift_of_the_Magi

The Gift of the Magi by O’Henry. As a child I heard or read this story, I can’t remember which, but it has always stayed with me as a reminder of the joy of giving. Maybe it was the twist of tragedy intertwined with the message of love and giving in this story that made it so poignant to me as a child, but regardless, it’s a beautiful classic that everyone should read, especially as we come closer to Christmas. It’s a sweet reminder of what it truly means to give and receive. You can download the MP3 link here The Gift of the Magi and listen with your family or cuddle up with a warm drink and read the story out loud yourself with the text version. Stay cozy and enjoy!

Gratefully yours,

Playful Lisa

 

Grateful Monday ~ Electric GratitudeNov. 17th

Electricity-of-Gratitude

I was reminded of the electrical, fluid-like property of gratitude when I saw this video (link below) again yesterday.  This is a beautiful example of paying-it-forward, Karma, The Golden Rule or whatever you prefer to call it~ gratitude in action… spoken,given and received, it is all a beautiful part of this life. Enjoy! 

Gratefully Yours,

Playful Lisa

Gratitude in Action

 

Grateful Monday ~ Healthy, Abundant Food!Nov. 11th

Grateful Monday ~ Healthy, Abundant Food

 

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

As parents we naturally want our children to be grateful for what they have.  However, living in a privileged society it may be understandably challenging for children to wrap their heads around gratitude for things they simply take for granted…like plentiful food, clean water, abundant clothing and cozy shelters. 

 

As we head into the holidays we are surrounded with food (some healthy, some not so much…) at every turn, treats, feasts, baking, parties, there seems to be no end to the amount of food available to us.  Most of us, that is.  So the question begs, how do we help our children know the pain and fear and shame of hunger without actually withholding food? 

 

Reading and telling stories about these topics is a great place to start… through storytelling and rich characters children can sneak a peek into the lives of others and can connect and empathize in a way that preaching will never accomplish. 

Here is a good one…

 

Uncle Willie and the Soup Kitchen by DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan (Ages 4-8) http://amzn.to/17YHmxC

 

One of the stories my mother told us growing up (and now my kids) was how her class- mates would eat lunch at school but she would walk home because all they had to eat were turnips, fried, boiled, you name it, just turnips.  She was too embarrassed to have friends over, or to bring such a meager lunch for everyone to see, so she would slip away, trying not to draw attention to herself.  It still breaks my heart every time I hear it.  

 

Acts of service are another way to help children become mindful of the plight of the hungry in our community.  There are so many ways to do this… anonymously leaving a grocery store gift card for someone you know is struggling,  passing out restaurant gift cards to the homeless, volunteering with Meals on Wheels or local community or church food banks… opportunities for service abound this time of year.

 

A Kids’ Guide to Hunger & Homelessness: How to Take Action!                           by Cathryn Berger Kaye M.A. (Ages 12+)                                         http://amzn.to/1hyYqQV

This season I am definitely grateful for food.  We are beyond blessed here on the Central Coast with year round, fresh produce and an abundance of farmer’s markets, CSA’s and a variety of well stocked grocery stores.  That is something to give thanks for at least three times a day!

How do you teach your kids about hunger and helping others in need? Share your stories, experiences and great ideas with us!

Gratefully Yours,

Playful Lisa

 

Grateful Monday: Grateful for GratitudeFeb. 25th

I know it almost sounds silly being grateful for being grateful. But think for a second about that concept. Being grateful. 

Something I think a lot of us take for granted is recognizing when we are grateful for things. Be it a person in our life that treats us well, having a parent or family member to lean on when things get tough, having those few friends that are always there for you even when you dont realize you need them. Even a beautiful day when you really need one. 

Its a funny thing being grateful. We all think we are grateful for everything in our lives but stop and think about it. I sure did. I realized I was focusing on the minuscule parts of life that weren’t that great instead of the ones that were great. The bad days instead of the good days. The dark clouds instead of the beautiful sky. 

Stopping in those moments to be grateful even for the tough parts in life make us stronger. Life is hard and knocks us down from time to time but we should all be grateful for every part of life, even the kind that isn’t always pretty. Those are the times we should be the most grateful because those are the things in the end that make us the people we become. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So this week lets be grateful for gratitude. Lets focus on gratitude. 

The simple habit of being grateful.Nov. 14th

There is a trend for the month of November to be filled with acts of gratitude and kindness. With Veteren’s Day and Thankgsgiving Holidays here in the states, we are gently reminded to give thanks. But we all know that being thankful and showing gratitude can be done anytime, anywhere…in fact the more the better!

When you think about it, it really is just a simple act. It only takes two simple words, spoken with sincerity, to have meaning. But this one simple act, creates a profound sense of care. We do care about you, we do care about what is doing on, we do care….period.

On Playful Planet’s facebook wall, we are having a month long gratitude share, in which people can post each day what they are grateful for. The incentive is to win some cool things from us, but also to get into a habit. The habit of being grateful. This habit doesn’t cost anything not does it cause undo stress. It simply makes someone else feel good while making yourself feel good too. It’s a win, win situation, that you can do over and over again!

So please, go beyond just this month and think habit. Think for the long term in sharing what you are grateful for.