Posted in Future, Parenting

What Should We be Teaching our Future Generations?

 

Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’m back today and I’m talking about some vital skills our future generations will need to survive on our planet.

 

Photo via Visual hunt

Our kids are going to inherit this messed up world we inhabit and they’ll inherit all the problems our greedy society has created in our quest for more. More money. More possessions. More power. More. More. More.

 

Photo via VisualHunt

The thing is we’re teaching our kids that striving for more is the only way to be. It’s not.  We need to teach our kids the concept of enough and the concept of balance.

 

Why?

 

Because being in Striver mode all the time is not good for our health.  If we continue in Striver mode and we continue to reproduce at the rate we are, we’ll soon be fighting over smaller and smaller space. We’ll be producing more trash and our landfills will overflow. This is a problem. By any chance did you see the movie “Wallie?” The Trailer is below.

 

 

In the movie, humans have to leave earth and move out into space into a floating world because earth is no longer able to sustain life. It’s covered in garbage and all the humans are too heavy to move or exercise. It’s an awesome movie and I’d recommend watching it with your kids if you get the chance.

That’s where our society is headed if we don’t start taking care of our planet and each other. Haven’t you heard? Obesity is an epidemic.

Photo credit: colros via Visualhunt / CC BY-SA

We need to teach our kids to slow down and take care of themselves.  Because we’re in Striver mode, we eat fast food and processed food. We do this because it takes less time to prepare and gives us more time to work. What happens when we reach that pinnacle of success? We have more money than we ever dreamed of, but we can’t enjoy it because we don’t have our health.

 

Photo via VisualHunt.com

Sad.

We need to slow down and teach our children to garden and how to cook for themselves so they can control what they put in their mouths. By doing this, they control their health.

 

Photo via VisualHunt.com

  We need to teach our kids to be fair. We can do this by teaching them to empathize with their fellow man. Empathy? How do you teach that?  By encouraging a love of reading.  By reading about different characters, our kids step into their worlds and learn about them.

 

Photo via Visualhunt.com

The more knowledge and tolerance they have for others, the better they’ll be at getting along with their peers. A vital skill when space is becoming smaller and smaller, wouldn’t you agree?

Reading you say? Yes reading. It’s also an awesome coping mechanism when you’re dealing with stress. Just an FYI. 🙂 Sadly, it isn’t a cure-all. We need to teach our kids how to communicate, using I messages so they can resolve conflict without a lot of negative feelings.

These Negotiation Skills will be in high demand in the future.

How can we teach this? By having our kids interact with their peers. Don’t let them play video games all day long. Don’t let them use their phones as their only means of communication.  Arrange play dates and get them outside, playing games, and solving their own conflicts.

Photo via Visualhunt

 

Last but not least. Teach them a love and respect for nature. Walking in nature is good for you. It’s called “Forest Bathing.” This practice originated in Japan, and there’s scientific proof it’s beneficial. Something I’ve known for a long time, but didn’t know there was actual proof of it.

 

Photo via VisualHunt.com

“A 2010 research review found that forest environments promoted lower concentrations of cortisol, lower pulse rate, lower blood pressure, greater parasympathetic nerve activity, and lower sympathetic nerve activity than city environments. [6]

Forest environments have been found to be advantageous with respect to acute emotions, especially among those experiencing chronic stress.[7]

Nature isn’t just good for you, we as a species need the trees and the bees in order to survive. The bees are our biggest pollinators. Thirty percent of our food crop depend on them to grow and ninety percent of our wild plants depend on them to flourish. That’s a tall order for those tiny bees wouldn’t you agree?

Photo via Visualhunt

And trees? They provide oxygen. It takes TWENTY-TWO trees to provide enough oxygen for one person. There are 7.442 BILLION people on earth. That’s a lot of trees. Now do you see why it’s important to have a love and respect for nature?

 

Photo via Visual Hunt

So there you have it.  My view on some of the essential skills our kids will need to survive on a shrinking planet. Are there any vital skills I’ve missed? Share your thoughts!  I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

 

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Posted in Family, nature, Uncategorized

The Orchards at the Orchard and Thoughts on Saving the Bees

 

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Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you!  I’m back after an awesome Saturday spent at the Apple Orchard. Some of us moms got together and we took our sons to one that was close to home.

It was the perfect fall day. A crisp breeze blew our hair back, but it left us with that sharp, fresh cleanness that only a brisk wind can. The sun was out, but it didn’t take the chill away. It was perfect for playing games, hot cider, and donuts.

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We’re trying to get outside as much as we can before winter’s hibernation. The theory this year is we’re going to have a snowy one. According to one source, the Great Lakes are the warmest they’ve ever been and as a result we’re supposed to get more snow. I don’t know if it’s true or not, but I’ve got my fingers crossed for snow days. I’m just as bad as my kids on that one. 🙂

We’ve been fortunate, these last two seasons have been awesome. We had that hot, steamy weather that I love in the summer, and because of it, we made some awesome memories at the lake. I witnessed some beautiful sunsets and some glorious starry nights.

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I’m awe-struck by the beauty of the Universe. Our Planet is amazing. I see it when I go on hikes or take my kids to the orchard, don’t you? I always take a minute to stop and breath in the crisp or humid air (depending on the season), then I take in the bright colors of autumn or the brilliant shades of the setting sun.

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I enjoy my hikes alone because I’m able to think about the stories I’m writing and solve plot issues, walking in nature does that for me.  But when we went to the orchard, I was glad I had the other moms with me. We got to bond and the boys deepened their friendship with each other. I’m grateful they’ve found some great friends, and I’m excited to see all of them grow up together. I hope they stay friends forever. 🙂

When I think about my boys and their friends and the future they may have, I wonder about what kind of world we’re leaving them. I hope we leave our kids with a healthy planet and not a dying one. We need to save the bees. Without them, there would be no apple orchards or wonderful autumn colors. Our plant life would die off, and trees would stop growing which means our oxygen supply is in peril.

Photo credit: Pinti 1 via Visualhunt / CC BY

Did you know that honeybees and wild bees are the pollinators of the majority of the crops we eat? Out of 100 crop species that provide us with 90% of our global food supply, 71 are bee pollinated. Check out this article for more info http://www.cnn.com/2014/05/17/opinion/spivak-loss-of-bees/

What can we do to save the bees? We can plant flowers that aren’t contaminated by pesticides. We need to feed the bees so they can feed us. So we can enjoy our wonderful nature walks and all the pollinated fruits and vegetables they provide. Let’s leave the Earth a beautiful place for our future generations.

 

Photo via Visual hunt

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. If you have any suggestions on what we can do to save the bees, leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

To check out some other Slice of Life Posts, click here.

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Could the Heavy Pollen Season this Spring help the Bees?

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a hectic couple of weeks. I’ve had classroom visits and I finished editing my fourth novel. I have news on that, but I’ll share that at a later date. 🙂

I’m in Michigan and as I’m sure many of you have heard we’ve had an extremely rough winter. In fact, I sent my kids to school today with their winter coats again because we just can’t seem to get the temperature above sixty degrees. Boo!

Anyway, I’ve heard because the winter has been so horrible that our spring is going to be the worst for allergy sufferers. According to the rumors, everything is going to pop at the same time this year and the pollen is going to be at very high levels.

Well, this got me thinking. 🙂 If the pollen is going to be at high levels this year, it would make it a great year to help the bees! That’s right! We need bees to keep the earth healthy. I’m sure you remember my post on saving the bees. Click here to read it: https://lisaorchard.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/lets-save-the-bees/

Photo compliments of Creative Commons on Flicker. Photographer Mike Baird

These tiny insects are one of the things that keeps our earth in balance and they do this when they cross-pollinate flowers. Unfortunately, the bee population has dwindled and experts aren’t sure why.

In order to keep our earth strong and vibrant we need to help our little friends. How can we help you ask? Well for one thing, plant flowers this spring. Let’s give our bee friends some food and while you’re at it, leave a basin of water near your flowerbeds, a birdbath isn’t just for birds, you know. 🙂 Bees get thirsty so let’s help keep them hydrated. To find out more ways to help our bee friends go to this link: http://www.queenofthesun.com/get-involved/10-things-you-can-do-to-help-bees/

My twitter friend, Dave the Bee shared it with me yesterday and it inspired this post.  Let’s take advantage of this heavy pollen season and help the bees help us! Plant some flowers this spring! 🙂

 

 

 

Posted in Health

Let’s save the Bees!

Photo compliments of Creative Commons on Flicker. Photographer Mike Baird

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today and I’m talking about Bees. That’s right. Bees. I received an e-mail early this morning and it was a call to action.

A call to action to boycott a company that manufactures a pesticide that is detrimental to bees’ health. This started me thinking, why would we need to boycott this company. Why are bees so important?

So, I did some research and I found bees are extremely important to our way of life. I was totally shocked. Who would’ve thought this tiny insect would have such an impact.

They do though, without bees there would be no cross-pollination. Cross-pollination occurs when a bee takes pollen from one flower and delivers it to another flower. Without cross-pollination, there would be no flowers or trees. In addition, without trees there’d be no oxygen.

I bet you can see where I’m going with this.

It’s a scary thought. Did you know more than one hundred agricultural crops in the United States are pollinated by bees? That means bees are essential for the production of nearly seven billion dollars’ worth of crops in Arizona alone.

So I can see the growing concern for keeping our bee population thriving. It’s not thriving though. In fact, bees have been disappearing from the hives. The normal declination rate is five percent each winter; this rate has risen to almost fifty percent in some cases. Scientists are calling this Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).

Photo compliments of Flickr Creative Commons by Know Malta by Peter Grima

What is the cause of this disorder? Scientists aren’t sure. There are many who believe pesticides are the problem. Others believe a virus has weakened the bees’ immune system. Still others hold onto the theory that the use of cell phones messes with the bees’ ability to find their way back to their hives. Something about the magnetic fields that cell phones generate.

Whatever the reason, this is a cause for alarm. According to Albert Einstein, “Mankind would be extinct four years after honeybees disappeared from the face of the earth.”

What can we do? So far, scientists have only speculated on the causes of CCD. Until we know the real causes behind it, we’ll have to be cognizant about the bees and refrain from swatting them with a newspaper. They’re good for the earth.

In addition, if you’re interested in helping them, plant some flowers this spring and feed the bees. 🙂

Photo courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons. Photographer is Patty Vicknair

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. If you have any thoughts on the bee situation please leave a comment. I’d love to read it!  🙂

 

For some interesting facts about honey bees, click the link below!

http://christinamercer.com/honeybees/

***I would like to thank beachbistro.com and Joyfusions.com for some of the information in this post. The links are below.

http://www.beachbistro.com/the-bees-knees-a-drink-to-bug-our-politicians/

http://joyfusions.com/what-is-pollination-and-why-honey-bees-are-important-pollinators/