Five Minute Friday: Welcome

Welcome.  I think I have had this discussion about feeling welcome over fifty times in the seven years I have known woman blessing Sarah, my co-leader to two Girl Scout troops (only one in which she has a daughter), my co-coach in soccer, my co-teacher at church, and my co-yogi.  In these endeavors, we always make it a priority to make the children as well as the parents feel welcome.  We send invites to events we are attending outside of our scheduled events which range from VBS to Zumba at the library.  We do this because in our conversations with one another we have discussed our experiences with the warm, nurturing feeling of being welcomed with open arms as well as the opposite, the loneliness which inevitably accompanies a feeling of being unwelcome.

We ended up at the church where we attend due to woman blessing Sherri who continued to welcome, invite, engage, and inquire whenever we saw her in the hallways during preschool pick-up.  She is one of those people whom you feel as if you have known forever upon meeting her on day one.  We finally succumbed to her advances and eventually ended up teaching Wednesday evening Bible studies to preschoolers under her direction.  Now that was a warm welcome which created results.

As a child, I changed schools four times in three years as the aftermath of my parents’ divorce.  As an eight-year-old, I can tell you how much a difference it made when I felt welcomed by students, teachers, and parents and when I did not.  I think of this always when I work with children of all ages as well as adults (who inevitably house an inner child).  Perhaps, they, too, once, twice, or several times have felt unwelcome.  Wouldn’t it be incredible to be that person who allows him/her to feel welcome for the first time?

This evening I plan to welcome my Daisies and Brownies to the Cookie Rally, and I definitely plan to welcome my two volunteer Cookie Queen Goddesses with open arms.  Whom do you plan to welcome today?

Sunday/Monday Thanks: Cards

One of my sweet Daisies, Miss Hailey, from my Girl Scout troop surprised me with the most beautiful box of cards for Christmas. I do not know how she knew, but this is one of my favorite ways to spend my downtime, writing cards and sending them to others.

To me (and my squirts), opening this box is like opening a box of possibilities.  My oldest daughter has created a book out of the beautiful cards.  My youngest squirt created surprise notes of love hidden beneath my hub’s pillow and my own pillow.

I have used the cards to thank the Daisy, thank some teachers, thank a Girl Scout leader, surprise my hub with a love letter, thank my friend who controls the bush growing on my head, thank a woman blessing who listened when I needed someone to listen, thank a woman blessing who offered to take my youngest squirt to school when my oldest was sick, and send to the women blessings on my #fmfpartysnailmail list.

I also plan to visit The Word Needs More Love Letters to see who else I can send a  card.

So, grab that box of cards gathering dust in the back of your drawer, and use your words to change a person’s life if only for the time it takes for him/her to read the card.  Every minute counts . . .

Who do you plan on sending a card to today?