Friday, April 20, 2012

     Once upon a time I told some of my grandkids a folktale that included some Water Buffalo leaving their droppings in holes in the road so people wouldn't trip in them. It's just a sweet little tale that brings on the giggles. Yesterday those same grandkids went for a walk with their momma. Along the way Hadley observed there were a lot of horse droppings in the road. To which her little sister, Madison, declared, "I put those there so you wouldn't step in the holes!"
     Okay, as a grandma I obviously love this exchange. Why? They remember the story, thus they remember me. (That's always good.) Plus, what began as a folktale will now evolve into a family story. It will be one of the oft-told tales that brings smiles to faces for years to come.
     That's why I tell, teach, preach, and demonstrate story.

     I love the organic way story swirls and weaves around us. In my mind the demarcation between folktale and family lore is fuzzy at best. We learn, remember, cherish, and reflect best through story. We honor the past and inspire the future through story. Recent studies have even identified that metaphor embeds more deeply into the memory center of our brain than simple data.
     That's why I tell, teach, preach, and demonstrate story.

     Last week I was blessed to spend some time with some Family Historians. They've dedicated their existence to researching and documenting the lives of the past. Their pride in their heritage and yearning for others to share their passion is palpable. Yet, I saw pain in their eyes. Somewhere along the way the story of the research has overshadowed the story of the people. What we were able to discuss and understand together is the simple fact that focusing on the stories of the people they have researched will embed the memories of those loved ones deeper than all the historical data they find. The dates are important because they bookmark significant stories from real life. But the stories are what make the dates important.
     That's why I tell, teach, preach, and demonstrate story.

     So, I have a challenge for you.

Simply making memories with Oobleck!
     Go through the day with story seeking eyes. Recognize those little moments that swirl around you are the stuff story and memory and family history are made of. Observe it, reflect on it, record it, and celebrate it.

     In other words - Cherish the memories!


  1. I love this! Putting the focus on the stories of families helps us remember what is truly important and valuable for future generations.

    Thanks for leading the way!

  2. This goes to show you that kids absorb and listen to far more than we give them credit. :)

  3. Ah warm fuzzies. :)