Last year, when my oldest niece was three years old, I asked her parents if I could pick her up and bring her to Louisiana to visit friends and family. Once they agreed, I drove a few hours out of the way to pick her up. Oh, the things you do to spend time with the little loves in your life! We had about a 5-hour drive from her home to my aunt’s house in Louisiana. You know, children usually become restless, but she is a great traveler. I loved spending those hours with her, having special conversations together. One such conversation went something like this:
Me: What is your favorite color?
AL: What is your favorite color, Aunt Katelyn?
Me: You tell me yours first because you will copy me.
AL: No, I won’t. What is yours?
Me: No, you will copy me. What is your favorite color? (I knew her favorite color is pink but wanted her to tell me.)
AL: I don’t know.
Me: Ok. My favorite color is green, but I like blue too.
AL: You know what I like about green?
Me: (Hmmmm. Where is this going?) No, what do you like about green?
AL: It reminds me of Christmas!
When I think about the color green simple things come to mind like grass, dollar bills, four-leaf clovers, mint chocolate chip ice cream, emeralds; you know, the usual.
But Christmas? Wow! What a great peek at the world through the eyes of a child!
Something as simple as the color green made my niece think of the “magic” of Christmas. For her “green” means the excitement of decorating her house and tree, doing Christmas shopping and gift wrapping, listening to the Christmas story, exchanging gifts, and, of course, seeing her Aunt Katelyn (I added that because I believe it). All of that is wrapped up in her experience with the color green. One word, GREEN, means all of that?!?!?!?
One thing that I have learned through bitter times is that it’s the little things that make my heart sing. When my heart is breaking or I feel like I’m struggling to keep my head above the waves, the little things touch my heart the deepest.
When my mother passed away, it was little gestures that made the biggest impact on my fragile heart. For the first month or so I received a text message every day from a group of friends. They did not all text me every day, however, I did hear from at least one of them each day. (I appreciated that they did not overwhelm me.) The texts were always short and sweet, “Thinking of you today,” “Praying for you,” “I’m here for you,” types of messages.
Another act of kindness that I received was that of quality time. I had a few friends that would come over to my house or I would go to their houses and just be there. We didn’t have to talk. We each did our own thing – like each read a book or listen to music, but their presence in my life helped me to not feel so alone.
It is important not to forget about the little things. A lot of times we want all of the big bursts of excitement in our lives and there is definitely a place for that, but if we had it all of the time, we would grow bored. Seeing all of the bliss that is enveloped in the color green – the little things – will help carry you through those dark times.
You may find beauty in a sunrise or sunset, in a nice chat with a friend, a walk around the lake, or a night out for fun. It is important that when everything around you seems to be shades of gray and black, you must remember the color green.