Short and Sweet

A little girl and boy standing in a kitchen

Last Friday, I sat down at the computer, planning to spend a few hours working on a post. I did a quick Facebook check first and saw the news about the horrific shootings in Connecticut. I read for a short while, then turned off the computer and took my kids for a walk outside.

One of my favorite quotes is by Henry Thoreau: “The cost of a thing is the amount of what I call life, which is required to be exchanged for it immediately or in the long run.”

Translated to blogging that means that currently I feel that the hours I would spend writing a new post could be better spent with my rapidly growing children, now while I can. I’ve lost my zeal for writing and while I’m sure it will return sooner than later, right now I’m just going to savor the peaceful lull.

I’m sharing one of my favorite pictures of my little monkeys from when they were small and we weren’t gluten free yet. They managed to get into two bags of flour and make a complete mess! I’ve always had the theory that ‘you can get mad or you can get the camera’ and it still applied in this case. As a result, that priceless memory isn’t marred by my fussing or them crying – it’s just a photo to smile about and remember that kids are going to be kids. They’re going to make messes, they’re going to make mistakes, they’re going to break an ornament off of your tree… none of these things warrants getting upset and yelling at them.

Enjoy your babies, your children and your loved ones while you can. Accept them, imperfections at all. Savor LIFE! I know I am.


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Jan Berry is a writer, herbalist, soapmaker, and bestselling author of The Big Book of Homemade Products, Simple & Natural Soapmaking, and Easy Homemade Melt & Pour Soaps. She lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains with her family and a menagerie of animals, where she enjoys brainstorming creative things to make with the flowers and weeds that grow around her.

  • Tammy/Our Neck of the Woods says:

    Enjoy your time with your children! The photo of them made me smile. And I love your motto of you can get mad or you can get the camera. So great!

    • Jan says:

      Thanks Tammy! I wish I could remember who first told me that idea about the camera; I think my daughter was just an infant at the time, but it stuck me with me! I owe someone out there for the great advice… :)

  • Steff says:

    My husband and I are trying for a baby right now and your words are good ones to remember! I hope I always remember to grab a camera. That picture is just too cute.

    I’m off to nurse a cold and am making your honey and lemon throat drops!

    • Jan says:

      I count it among the best parenting advice I’ve ever gotten and have some priceless pictures to show for it. I would love for more people to embrace the idea! :) I hope your cold feels better soon!

  • Farmer Doug says:

    You’ve said it better than I could, Jan. Thanks for this timely reminder. I don’t recall having seen this particular quote of Thoreau’s…a powerful sentiment indeed. Take care…Doug.

    • Jan says:

      Thanks, I first read it in a Dale Carnegie book several years ago. I have the page earmarked and return to it often. Great stuff to ponder on…

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