I feel embarrassed to report that we have not yet created our “value tree”. It has been over a month since we came up with the draft and even went to the craft store to buy a poster board. Our kids asked when we would finally work on painting the tree for a week or two, but then the intention was lost in our day to day busyness. My husband and I committed to drawing it out last night, but then ended up spending time with friends instead (one of our values – friendships!). And then we postponed it to today, which was spent helping my mother-in-law (another value – family!) and cleaning/cooking/haircuts/laundry (these fit into two other values we identified: health and security!). I am excited that as I am writing this, I realize that even though we did not get around to our art project – we still lived our values 🙂
I really appreciate how this project helps us live a little more mindfully.
I also noticed that even though we did not find time to sit down and talk specifically about our values since last month, we still were able to talk about them with our children. We often explained to the kids that the reason we do X, is because we value Y. For example, when we explored our local pumpkin farm to pick out our Halloween pumpkins last weekend, we explained that our outing helped us live several values: family, nature/outdoors, enjoyment, and inquisitiveness. And today when my daughter helped me with the laundry and then I helped her with cleaning her hamster cage, we talked about how our teamwork helped us live the values “family, kindness, and courtesy”.
I really appreciate how this project helps us live a little more mindfully. Hopefully, by recognizing when and how we live our values every day and pointing them out to our children, we can all incorporate our values and appreciation for them into our daily routine.
On a side note, our son created a “Fruit of the Spirit Handprint Tree” at preschool. His class is learning about Galatians 5:22-23 “but the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” We all thought it was really neat that his preschool project was so very similar to our home project. This further facilitated many conversations about our values, and we are planning to somehow incorporate our son’s preschool project into our family’s value tree. …Once we finally get it 🙂