The Mindfulness Mansion by Tricia Zirit (aka Nurse Zirit)

Mindfulness creates space,
like tons and tons all over the place.
Not space like, “Hey, ride with me there’s space in my car.”
And not space like, “Hey, I just saw a shooting star.”
But a type of subtle, still, inner space, and this is how – 
because mindfulness brings us into right now.
Once we fully arrive into the present moment at hand, 
there is enough space for everything – it’s like we expand.
Not expand like “Oh no, these pants are too tight.”
And not expand like, “Hey look at my bubble gum blown just right.”
But a type of subtle, still, inner expansion –
that feels, on the inside, like a mindfulness mansion.
Not a mansion that’s fancy or expensive or showy,
but a mansion that’s accepting and open and glowy.
There’s enough room to be happy, sad, joyful and mad – 
there’s room to be frustrated and room to be glad.
There are no walls or boundaries or fences around, 
only wide open space and our two feet on the ground.
There are no butlers or maids who are constantly cleaning,
but a focus on breathing and what brings our lives meaning. 
So be present, breathe deeply, and shine your own light,
because in the mindfulness mansion we are always alright.

National Teachers’ Day- Say Thanks

As an adult, and especially a parent, I’ve always been appreciative and respectful of the teaching profession.  I haven’t always agreed with the people responsible for teaching my children at school. But I’ve been welcome to ask questions, share concerns, and when necessary courteously challenge them. There are multiple teachers, administrators and educational professionals in my extended family, so I know teaching is hard. Most are expected to be educators PLUS mentors, disciplinarians, counselors, health care providers, advocates, coaches and fans while balancing their responsibilities to parents, children and administrators. They are required to hold the attention of kids (for HOURS) that are used to constant entertainment from their electronic hand held devices. Teaching is not just a job, it’s a calling, and it’s national teacher day. So write a note, make a phone call, tweet, post or proclaim from your front steps and thank someone that taught you or your child.
And while you’re feeling grateful, jump in and thank those even less appreciated volunteers in your local Parent Teacher Association/Organization. The National PTA has been fighting for children’s rights, safety and healthcare for over 100 years. Your friends, neighbors and community members are spending their personal time fundraising to enhance student experiences. Your PTO is providing monies for supplies, events and activities that are not underwritten through the district school budgets.  These people work tirelessly – usually a select few for years – and they do it to benefit the teachers and students in your local school.  If you chose not to be a member of your local PTA, and you don’t have time to volunteer for their events or support their fundraisers, take a few minutes, and tell them “Thank You.” Those members have chosen to spend some of their (equally limited and precious) spare time improving the school environment for your children and their teachers. Be grateful to the wonderful community of teachers and volunteers that are helping you in your efforts to raise amazing new humans.