It's probably been 20+ years since I've done nested fractions. Well, I did it today. Just for fun?...no, not really. It was to help a child, but it was actually pretty fun. I was thinking hard; using a part of my brain that I haven't used in a long time. I had a friend say the other day that she was jealous that I have the opportunity to learn alongside my kids. Sometimes it's hard, sometimes I feel stressed, but I do totally love it and it is a marvelous reward.
This week, as required by our literature curriculum, my son and I finished a book called Freckles. It’s a beautiful story about a boy who knows almost nothing about who he is and where he comes from. It’s Freckles’ journey to find himself and to find love, of all kinds. Along the way his strength of character is revealed in both brave and tender ways. Freckles earns the trust and love of all those around him, most importantly that of his special “Swamp Angel.” The story takes place in the Limberlost Swamp of Indiana. Gene Stratton-Porter made the Limberlost come to life for me. She described the outdoor "study" that Freckles created for himself using Wild Rose, Dogwood Trees, Willow, St. John’s Wort, Goldenrod, and Ferns. Her impeccable description of the various flowers and shrubbery made it almost life like. Ilonged to step foot into that outdoor sanctuary. I could image the cool, moist air and the earthy smells. I could almost hear the chirps of the birds and the murmuring of the insects. I want a space like that of my own.
It was no surprise to later learn that Stratton-Porter was in actuality a naturalist and a bird photographer. This was her first passion. In fact, she only ever wrote her fictional work in order to compensate her publishers for the money lost on the non-fictional records, which she loved best. She weaved her life's passion into her work. And, wow, is it inspiring!
Do we weave our passion into our lives’ work? It may not be possible to walk away from the full time job when we have a family to support and a house payment to make, but how can we make our lives’ work reflect our passion? Is that possible? I wonder if we were to encourage our children to pursue their God given interests and talents when they are young, would they be able to spend their lives realizing their dreams and passions? I wonder. What a happy, inspired place this world would be? Think of the masterpieces!
I write about “living your passions” a lot. Perhaps I’m trying to convince myself that I’m not crazy for going after one of mine. That I’m not crazy for selling my home, leaving my comfortable, traditional life style, and aspiring to create my own little magical, outdoor sanctuary for children to enjoy. Well, if I am, it’s too late. I’m already on the way.