So excited to kick off the Party with a post that speaks for all the Bliss Habits from homeschooling guru and Merrymaker Jamie McMillin. You may remember her guest post How to Help Your Kids Find their Passion. She is back today with a post that will inspire anyone interested in injecting a little bliss into their life!
Jamie has also been generous to include a copy of her book Legendary Learning as a give away for the party. Tune in at the end of the post to see how you can win this marvelous prize! Take it away Jamie!
Just above my kitchen sink, and below the windowsill, are three dishwater-splattered bits of poetry, taped to the wall. One is a passage from Shakespeare’s “AMidsummer Night’s Dream” (“Lovers and madmen have such seething brains . . .”).One is from Walt Whitman (“Oh give me the splendid silent sun . . .”) and the other is “The Kraken” by Lord Alfred Tennyson (“Below the thunders of the upper deep . . .”).
I’ve been hanging poetry here for years, changing them out with the seasons or sometimes every month. My kids always look forward to a fresh display of poems to read while washing dishes. It gives them something whimsical to think about, to recite out loud, and sometimes memorize.
For me, the poems help me get outside myself and think about something bigger and better. It is so true that if we want to change anything about ourselves, we have to first change the quality of our thoughts. Sometimes it’s so hard to think joyful or serene thoughts when a never-ending-to-do list is spiraling through our heads. We may have the best of intentions, but real life and old habits are always there, waiting to take over when we lose heart.
That’s why we need reminders. Poems help us remember how vast, yet connected, this world really is. We can read about storms, shipwrecks, howling wolves, daffodils, lovers, journeys, owls and pussycats; and behind all those characters is a truth that the poet has found for us, if we take the time to see it. Those truths will find their way into your backbone and give you a sense of courage and perspective that you never knew before.
Why not let poet Mary Oliver help you remember joy? Or Maya Angelou teach you moxie? Or Emily Dickinson show you humility?
Let Shel Silverstein or Dr. Seuss or Lewis Carroll help you with whimsy (plus the kids will love it). Shakespeare and countless others can model creativity and romance.
The important thing is to choose poems YOU like. Everyone resonates with different styles. My favorite poems might drive you crazy. That’s OK. Just start searching for your first three poems. Find the ones that tickle you, print them out or copy out by hand, and hang them up!
Remember to change your poems regularly so they don’t get stale. Read them while your hands are busy scrubbing. Say them out loud. Listen to the words. Try to memorize a few of your favorite verses. You will see how a little bit of poetry can make all the difference in the quality of your thoughts.
Thank you Jamie. I just love this idea!
Now on to the giveaway!
Legendary Learning eBook by Jamie McMillin
Legendary Learning: The Famous Homeschoolers’ Guide to Self-Directed Excellence is a book for any parent who wants to think beyond test scores, college admission, and social conventions. Based on the same techniques used by Thomas Edison, Teddy Roosevelt, Agatha Christie, Louis Armstrong, and other famous homeschoolers, parents will be inspired to break free of boring, unleash their child’s unique creative genius, cultivate determination, and create an authentic atmosphere of learning.
How to win this fabulous giveaway!
1. Leave a comment about Jamie’s Kitchen Sink Poetry idea here on this post
2. In a separate comment tell us why you’d like to win Jamie’s terrific book
3. Stop by the blog post “Using Mind Maps to Get Your Head Straight.” and leave a comment there.
4. Tweet the following:
I just entered to win@JamieMcMillin1 ‘s Legendary Learning ebook in the #BlissHabits Blogversary-apolooza http://bit.ly/IJjAXr
Do all four and you have four chances to win!
Winner will be selected at random from all entries received by 5:00pm Pacific time, Friday, May 18, 2012
This contest has closed! Congratulations to Tania Dakka!
Check out the completer Blogversary-apolooza giveaway list and learn how you can double your chances!!