Children Sing for Peace

This baby obviously knows that Peace is important and that playing is the way to bring it. I love the composition of this pic. Van is so large; his child is so small. But that child is playing the harmonic full on.

And Van is charmed; not bothered. On the one hand, it’s his baby. On the other hand, knowing Van, he’d be just as welcoming of whatever kid came up to hang by his leg (harmonica or no)… and Van, being Van, draws the littles like flies.

That’s bringing the music. That’s making space for laughter, Love and Peace to happen.

One way or another, making the space and bringing the Peace is what we’re all called to do.


That Reading, Snuggling Peace

For those of us who miss our grandchildren — we need to cultivate local kids to keep our hand in the game.

Someone wants or needs a story to be read to them. Someone wants or needs to read a story to us.

Side benefits? New Stories. Old favorites revisited. Shared innocence and earnesty. Snuggles. Pretty much all good things.

And oh, new and interesting children in your life and in your arms. We’re made to love these kids. We should practice harder.

If there were more adults snuggling with children, particularly children not their own, if we learned the shape of those bodies in our arms, in our laps, there would be more Peace in this world.

This is not a difficult challenge to undertake. And if you don’t have grands yet, you can begin training.


The Peace of Babies All in a Row!

Some things don’t require a lot of explanation, they just are. They are in fact just perfect.

A limousine stroller full of laughing kiddles and a long rope with slightly larger kiddles hanging on? This falls into the you can’t stand the cute category.

And then they waved and mugged for the camera. man. sweet.

Sometimes Peace is a simple shared moment in time when everything is just beautiful. Babies can give you those moments (especially when they’re someone else’s, riding by and waving!)… Peace, y’all! Let’s celebrate the sweetness… It lubricates the rest of life!


An Oasis of Calm and Mischief Gets Built

Ann: Hey Everybody! Say Hello to Maia… Maia! Talk to us about families and communities, will you?

Maia: When, in 1996, Hillary Clinton made it known to the world that It Takes a Village to raise a child, I had no idea how true those words would someday become to me.   In my work as a child psychologist, I had observed many times how “others” in children’s lives had stepped up to be the difference in their world, so I guess I had an inkling of the importance of community in raising kids. However, it wasn’t until just about 3 years ago when the foster care agency dropped off an adorable, smart-as-a-whip, behavior-disordered, attachment-challenged, 4-year-old alien at my door that I really began to understand the place that the village has in helping to raise our children.

At the time my partner and I decided to adopt, we were already feeling pretty good about the community we had around us – family members (both biological and chose), friends, coworkers, church members – lots of good folks who were cheering us on in our pursuit of adding a child to our happy, coupled life.   The ideal of community support seemed to be there and we were ready to take on whatever child was to come our way. We were ready, but the community that we thought would be there maybe wasn’t quite so ready for the challenges that came with the amazing child the universe had chosen for us.

As our default village started to be less present in our lives, our challenge, then, became to figure out how to surround ourselves and our new son with other people, a new community, a welcoming village; those folks who were willing to be an important part of our lives…to nurture him and us, to challenge us to be the best people we can be, and to help to hold us accountable to giving back to others as well.   Little by little we have found the members of our new village. They have not always been those we would have predicted, but they are folks that we hold near and dear to us. I hope that in telling our story of creating our village, others who are also looking for a village will find hope and inspiration while creating their own…