look up. look down. {a summer series}

i'd guess most days we are learning bucket loads from our peers and those in the same season of life as us.

but how would you evaluate how much you are learning from those ahead of you and behind you? we need to look up and look down. to watch and listen to those younger than us and to sit a while with those older than us. we've got much to learn and it's right in front of us. 

ask yourself: when you were little, and even now, are you more drawn to those older than you or younger than you? what do you see in your kids?

elijah is drawn to those older. sam is passionate about helping those younger than him. asher seems to observe both demographics. kavita balances this well as she is watching older role models closely, yet is a natural with young kids. mine has been the same since i was a little girl. 

Sweet Nanny and me


ms. dora. grandma marie. mrs. hazel. mrs. marjorie. sweet nanny. granny and nana and notherbea. i think i was born with an old soul drawn to the ladies decades ahead of me who were finishing their races well as i was just starting mine. 

what throws me off, still, is that someone younger than me is watching my race. kids are watching my kids. and ben's race is a bit in the limelight. what do i have to teach? if for no other reason than "i've been there, done that, felt and experienced that," it's enough to share with others. i'm more talkative with the older generation and more observant with the younger. you? 

how does this help you love where you live?

the people in your community are breathing in what you are breathing in. they are hearing the political chatter and are affected by the culture. their voices, feeble or energetic, are of value to you and your town. 

spend time with the elderly. we’ll be visiting our 90 year old papa in georgia and have questions to ask him about his favorites in life, the risks he took and what he thinks has been his purpose in life.

Our sons with their younger friend

spend time with the young. offer to babysit or hold that precious newborn so her momma can take a shower. live life where you kids are pouring into those younger than them. our kids are beneficiaries of  kayla, chase, and hannah. of university of alabama college students. of really cool young adults who give their time to come hang out and invest. now they are serving in our kid classrooms at church and are the ones doing the entertaining when younger kids come over. 

i think when you set this up for yourself or your kids, a beautiful friendship will take root and today has the potential to be a defining moment for you and future generations. 

how does this activity - look up. look down. become a part of your family culture?

what have you learned about your community from someone older or someone younger?