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The other day as my stepdaughter was (impatiently) waiting to leave for volleyball practice I had her help me finish addressing some envelopes for a nonprofit project. At the same time I was (attempting) to listen to an online webinar as I am taking every chance I can to learn these days. It wasn’t a fantastic webinar but I was committed nonetheless.

As Florencia was putting stamps on the letters she started to ask me questions. What were the letters in the envelopes about? How do the letters get to the person? Is it free to mail a letter? How much does it cost? Questions that were cute and made me giggle … but could have also been a little annoying at the same time because like I said, I was trying to be engaged with the webinar.

Thankfully I let the cute part overrule the potentially annoying part and I instead had the chance to educate my stepdaughter on the act of giving (the letters were tax receipts for a nonprofit I have been involved with) … and the value of things (both monetarily — as in “how much does a stamp cost” and how it costs more to send a letter outside of the country — and on the non-monetary side such as why people donate their hard earned money to charities).

I closed my laptop as we finished sealing and stamping the envelopes and soon after it was time to go to volleyball practice.  Florencia probably never gave our conversation another thought but I had the biggest grin on my face for the rest of the day. I felt grateful that I took a few moments to teach instead of be taught. In the end I learned more that day from the discussion with Florencia then I ever could have learned from a webinar.

Sometimes it’s important to let go of what we’re doing and embrace the world that is right in front of us.