By Kathy Kuhl

Last month I had the privilege of walking to Myrtle Falls, in Mt. Rainier National Park. (Thanks, Washington Homeschool Organization, for having me speak at your convention. What a beautiful state!)

Dazzled by the beauty of the massive volcano and its glaciers, we walked through John Muir’s favorite Alpine meadow, with gorgeous wildflowers, lovely waterfalls, and spectacular views of Mt. Rainier.

As we hiked, we were surprised to see a man further down the trail in business clothes: a white dress shirt and black trousers. As he passed us and we said hello, he commented sadly that he had to go back to work.

All day, he said, he sat at a desk in a nearby lodge, keeping the books. He spent all day in an office, with all this beauty around him, out of sight.

We sympathized, and told him we were from Virginia and it was our first time in the park and that we were delighted to see it. Then his perspective changed. He smiled and told us he walked in the park on every lunch break. Over several years, he had explored every nearby trail in different seasons.

view from ParadiseWhat a privilege!

We too can be bogged down with paperwork, whether it’s medical insurance forms, evaluations, schoolwork, planning, or grading.

Like this bookkeeper, we must not forget to look. But we’ve also got to savor what good we see:

Enjoy the stars, the wildflowers sneaking onto your sidewalk. (I don’t call it a weed when it’s blooming.)

Celebrate your child’s progress.

Her perseverance

His humor.

Their smiles.

“What a paradise!” exclaimed Martha Longmire when she first saw this meadow. Her father-in-law James Longmire was building the first year-round lodges in the park. Seeing the area, this woman had the perspective to name it well. And Paradise became its name.

Kathy Mt Rainier 2015As you care for your exceptional children, what good things do you get to see? Can you see them well enough to appreciate them, name them, and enjoy them?