Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet. ~Plato

Monday, February 7, 2011

Front Porch

This picture is of the front porch of our house in Kansas City....I spent a lot of time sitting out there pondering, reading, dreaming and relaxing. There were also times when people would come over and we would visit....lots of good conversations were had on that front porch.

Yesterday I went to Wal-Mart to pick up some items and I was standing in the candle aisle sniffing the candles when a lady approached me (she was getting ready to make a good smelling purchase as well) and a conversation started......we talked about the scents and then to her grandson and ended up being a lengthy conversation with a complete stranger......after she left I proceeded to the drink aisle where and older gentleman was reading the labels....again another conversation started, this one was not lengthy but it made me think, have we lost something? Have we traded conversations with strangers at Wal-Mart for those days when we would set on our front porches or stoops and talk with our neighbors?

Don't get me wrong, I am more than willing to have a conversation with a stranger....I am a firm believer in giving everyone a smile and listening to what they have to say. Listening is a lost art and my mission is to bring it back but before I can bring it back I want to understand where we lost it.

When I was a young girl I would spend a week in the summer at my Grandmother's house in a quaint Midwestern town where there were front porches on all of the houses and in the evenings those porches were occupied buy the inhabitants and neighbors. A walk in the neighborhood would take for ever because there were many conversations to be had at each home. Children were allowed to run the neighborhood because there was always an eye to make sure they were not in trouble. So did the conversations stop because homes were built with small or no front porches? Or was it because TV replaced our evening rituals, then computers and cell phones with their texting? Can one really hear what a person is saying in a text message?

I feel in our quest to become more connected we have become more disconnected. We have taken the emotion out of our there are some communications that should not involve feelings...that is in business matters (that is a whole other post). With a text or an email....even a phone conversation there is no touch, no opportunity to give a hug if it is needed, no eye contact to let the person you are talking to know you are really listening!!!

When was the last time you invited and elderly neighbor to dinner? They hold a vast aount of knowledge and we push them out of our way because we have so many things to get done.....are those things more important then a bringing joy to a human being? As far as that goes, it doesn't even need to be an elderly could be any neighbor. Take the time to make a pot of coffee and put some cookies on a plate and call someone to come have a conversation, when you are done you will feel more connected then if you had sent them a text or given them a call, mostly because you took the time to make them feel special.

Now I understand the importance of phone calls, emails and fact they have become my saving grace since moving 1400 miles away from family and friends.....maybe if I take my own advice I will soon find my front porch full of new friends with new conversations!

Give some one the gift of your time it will bless them and you!!!