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It is almost impossible for me to explain how warm my heart is right now. Yesterday a complete stranger asked Oliver a question while we were at the beach cleaning. We often have people approach us with thanks and gratitude for our actions. These moments are usually very positive and very encouraging. Well yesterday, a very nice older man approached us and started a conversation. He was very appreciative of our actions and noted that seeing a family working together brought much joy to his heart and assured him that there still was good in this world. He told Oliver that when he was a boy, his family would do the same when they would go on camping trips. Oliver was very intrigued and pressed him for more details.
As the conversation progressed, the ole fellow asked Oliver a question. "Why do you like to clean the beaches?", he asked. Without missing a beat Oliver proclaimed that he loved sea turtles and he was trying to pick up the plastic before it could reach the ocean and be mistaken for food and harm them. It brought a big smile to my face but the later part of his response almost brought me to my knees with tears of joy. After a brief pause, Oliver said, "oh and I love it because I get to spend a lot of time with my dad!"
In this crazy modern world it is easy to get bogged down in the mundane task and put the car in auto pilot so to say. Days can turn into years very fast, but Oliver’s response about enjoying quality family time, quickly reminded me of what is truly important in life. So today when we are at the beach, if the children ask to stay a little longer to build another sand castle, you can bet your bottom dollar we will grant them the opportunity. Sure we might be a little late for dinner or miss the nightly news, it will be an insignificant price to pay to get in a little more quality time!
We urge you to get out in the world with your children. Tune out the rest of the world and tune into them. It is not about what you do, it is about who you do it with. Our family has discovered that going on long walks and taking actions to help the environment has brought us closer together. Perhaps doing the same will bring a little joy to your family! It sure has to ours!!!