The Warren & the World is Story Warren’s weekly newsletter, providing a round-up of our favorite things from around the web as well as a review of what was on our site over the past week. We’re glad you’re here!
Around the Web
What do Students Lose by Being Perfect? Valuable Failure
- In the first pages of Being Wrong, Kathryn Schulz writes, “In our collective imagination, error is associated not just with shame and stupidity but also with ignorance, indolence, psychopathology, and moral degeneracy.” This cultural terror of messing up, combined with modern modes of parenting and schooling obsessed with narrow versions of academic and career “success,” are making students more than risk-averse.
To the Teenage Girls at the Swimming Pool
- I had ventured up to the high dive after striking a deal with my older son. You go off the high dive, Mom, and I’ll do my master cannonball, he proposed. No problem, I thought. What’s the big deal? But after I walked up the stairs and took one look over the edge into the water below, I realized what the big deal is. The high dive is HIGH! I cannot do this!, I thought, but got in line behind you anyway.The last time I jumped off a high dive I was 18 years old — a teenager just a few years older than you — but a whole lot changes in 20 years. For one thing, the diving board seems higher; the fall seems farther. And worries about a possible swimsuit malfunction and water up my nose and doing an embarrassing belly flop make it seem a whole lot riskier.
“It always takes me a few tries before I actually jump,” one of you said to me.
When Practicing Hospitality is Practically Impossible
Hospitality is not just about opening your home. Christin Ditchfield reminds us at Grace Table that sometimes the traditional view of hospitality of a feast spread on a table is impossible, but that there are ways to practice hospitality nonetheless.
- It’s been twenty years, and a lot of things have changed – but I have never yet had the kind of life I once envisioned for myself. I have a wonderful life, a full life, a busy career and ministry. But it’s not the kind of life that seems to be many people’s reality. The kind of life where I could put all those wonderful homemaking ideas and tips and tools into practice. The life where I would get to practice that “gracious living” kind of hospitality.
At least not in the traditional sense. Not in the “come to my beautiful home and let me cook for you” sense. Not even in the “come to my humble home and let me order in for you” sense.
I realize I’m not exempt from the Biblical command to practice hospitality. None of us are.
Rethinking the Rat Race: Five Reasons for Overwork
Clint Archer examines our tendencies to overwork and challenges us to make a change. Whether your work is in a cubicle or around your home, Archer’s words are a helpful encouragement.
- Everyone in a cubicle thinks he’s Jack Bauer. Is it possible your job isn’t important enough to global stability to warrant the hours you put in? If that suggestion prickles your pride, then perhaps your dedication to the corporate fiefdom isn’t as noble as you make it out to be. [jack_bauer_productivity]I don’t have a definition for what constitutes too much work, but we all know people whose lives are affected detrimentally by their workload. If, thanks to work, your family is disintegrating, your health is deteriorating, and time for God’s priorities (e.g. attending and serving in church) is disappearing then your schedule is unbalanced.
One of the reasons God made Sabbath for mankind is so that we will rest from our labor regularly enough to worship him devotedly, and recuperate sufficiently to sustain a long, productive, God-centered life.
Around the Warren
Outdoors with Lucy
Guest Mark Geil writes of being reminded to stop and explore the world, remembering what it means to care for someone–a lesson he’s learning from his new puppy.
- The cool moss under my bare feet awakens a dormant sensation. I stand in the back yard, pink leash in hand, watching a nine-week-old puppy who is almost frantic in her exploration. While my feet remind me of a texture and a temperature I knew long ago, from boyhood summers that saved shoes and socks for Sundays, the puppy’s paws and nose write new stories about the world.
“All things great…”
Words from L.M. Montgomery. Graphic by Paul Boekell.
Ticket to Write, Part 3: Dancing Gargoyles and Gruesome Armadillos
Jennifer Trafton has some more fun activities for you and your kids. Don’t forget to check out Jennifer’s online writing class for kids, which starts on August 24. There’s a link at the bottom of her post to learn more.
- If you’ve been following me on this word adventure with your kids, congratulations! So far you’ve gathered a treasure chest of vibrant vocabulary and “painted” pictures with words. Susan Wooldridge’s book Poemcrazy, the original inspiration for the word tickets, includes many wonderful suggestions for using these tickets and having fun with language (especially in the form of poetry), and I encourage you to read the book for ideas. In the meantime, I’ll leave you with just a few of my own activities to help you encourage creativity in your kids:
For Stormy Weather
Liz Cottrill shares some Emily Dickinson for a stormy late summer day.
Something to Do with Your Kids
It is possible that the youngest one in your house is sometimes a monster. I am a youngest child, and my mother tells tales of my tantrum rug. But it’s also possible that you might just need to make someone in the family into a monster–just for the fun of it, or so that you can play Three Billy Goats Gruff or something. If that’s the case, then here are some ideas for making monster feet.
And Something to Watch
National Geographic has a fun series of videos introducing the state birds and facts about each state. I thought New Mexico was cool–mostly because their state bird is the roadrunner and I one time had a really good meal at a restaurant in New Mexico. Roadrunner was not on the menu, but green chiles were.
Thank you for reading. We’re on your side.