Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Alone and loving it

I am sitting in my house, by myself, drinking coffee, listening to birds, feeling the breeze and smiling really big.  A while back I would have felt incredibly guilty for enjoying this so much.

I have been a mom for almost 9 years.  Time alone is scarce when you're a mom, unless you're willing to get up at 5 a.m. or stay up until midnight.  But even then the "Mom hat" is on.  Always ready to come to the rescue of a little person.

Today I know the kids are safe with grandparents and for 6 days I can take off my "Mom hat".  I will read books and take walks and just sit without the slightest bit of guilt.  Because I learned in Vivien's Sunday school class this weekend that on the 7th day God rested.  And even thought sometimes it doesn't feel like I'm really working, I am.

Amen and Amen.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Enjoying your kids when you're at the end of your rope

Sometimes I don't enjoy my kids.  There, I said it.  It's the truth.  And I'm sure they don't enjoy me all the time either.  In fact, I know they don't... they tell me straight up.  So I was thinking about what I do when I'm at the end of my rope to enjoy my kids.

1. Get away from them: Absence makes the heart grow fonder.  I have found this to be very true.  Time away from each other does all of us a lot of good.  Even if it's just for an hour or two.  Just a little time to check out and take off my "Mom hat".

2. Go outside:  Getting outdoors can make a world of difference.  It's easy for me to get uptight when we're cooped up in the house, especially when little people are jumping, squealing, screaming, running, etc... But outside the same things seem to just roll right off my back.  The change of scenery, fresh air, and just being out of your usual 4 walls.  Go for a walk, lay in the grass, play tag, or just sit.

3. Turn up YOUR favorite music and dance: Big time emphasis on YOUR favorite music.  I've listened to my fair share of kiddo music.  I love for my kids to hear the music I love.  And singing and dancing loosens everyone up.

4. Pillow Fight!: I came up with this one on a particularly frustrating day and was pleasantly surprised by how fun it was.  And don't think this is just for older kids.  I'm pretty sure my 2 oldest kids were 2 and 4 when this came about.  It's just awesome to throw your pillow around at each other and occasionally knock someone over.  Pretty soon the stress is gone and everyone is laughing.

5. Audio books:  Audio books are the BOMB.  Go to the library, pick out your favorite, and pop it in the CD player.  Go for a drive and listen to it.  It's magical and I find myself listening and enjoying just as much as they are.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


Today I was at my Mom-in-law's house and I thought I heard my phone ringing at the other end of the house.  I literally started to run so I could catch the call in time.  Not because I was expecting an important call or anything, just because God forbid I miss a call.  Mid-run I thought to myself, "Why am I running?  What other things have me running unnecessarily?"

I'm quick when I hear my phone ring, but slow when I hear "Mom look at me!"

I'm quick to check Facebook every 5 minutes, but slow to spend even 5 minutes with Jesus.

I'm quick to pick up a donut, but slow to pick up a carrot.

I'm quick to sit on the couch, but slow to hop on my bike.

I'm quick to get angry, but slow to extend patience.

I'm quick to speak, but slow to listen.

I'm quick to feel guilty, but slow to accept grace.

It doesn't take a genius to figure out that whatever you're running towards is where you're going to end up.  And if I'm running quickly, I'm bound to get there faster.  I'm going in the wrong direction and I'm looking for the off ramp.

"Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.  And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith."
                                        -Hebrews 12:1-2

"Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one get the prize?  Run in such a way as to get the prize."
                                          -1 Corinthians 9:24

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Routine Spontaneous

One of the things I dislike most in life is routine.  This is funny, because most of my best friends are type-A personality.  The people who love routine.  Opposites attract.  I need them, they need me.

I love spontaneity!  I think that's one of the things that social-media takes out of the world... spontaneity.  When I was in high school one of the funnest things to do on a Friday or Saturday night, or any night for that matter, was to drive down Pearl street or the water front.  You never knew who you were going to run into.  It was a mystery and fun.  And if you did happen to run into someone, it was exactly that, running into someone.  Filled with surprise and your heart had a chance to beat really fast and be excited at the unknown.

Now days I can see someone at my 10 year high school reunion and they say, "Oh, we already know everything that's going on with each other from Facebook.", and then they walk off.  That really happened.  And while it was true, we did know a lot about each other's lives, we hadn't seen each other face to face in 10 years.

I love taking breaks from Facebook and then seeing friends and having them tell me about something going on in their lives.  And I can be genuinely surprised or sad or happy with them because I haven't already read their story on Facebook.

ROUTINE: Regular, unvarying, habitual, unimaginative, or rote procedure

SPONTANEOUS: Natural and unconstrained; growing naturally; independent of external agencies; self-acting

Monday, July 2, 2012


There's a problem with reading a lot of good non-fiction books.  I get so engrossed in the story.  These people's lives seem so amazing and dreamy and adventurous.  I start to think, "Maybe my life should look like that."  Here is where the problem lies.

I start resisting my dimensions and long for someone else's.  This simply does not work.  I wasn't made to fit their dimensions.  I was made to fit mine.  Soon chaos surrounds me.  Chaos I've created because I've resisted my place.

Reading other people's stories is wonderful.  So much can be learned and stored and applied.  But if it causes me to plagiarize or just stop writing my own story all together...

I am not the president of World Vision.  I am not a funny woman from Texas fighting excess.  I am not a young 20-something girl living in Uganda.  I am not a physician/activist living in a twelve by twelve in North Carolina.

I'm me.  I like reading and riding bikes.  I love laughing, especially with my husband.  I'm starting to enjoy cooking.  I like taking walks and listening to music and talking about God.  I have an infinite amount of areas that need improvement.  Like being fully present and giving my full attention to the people I'm with.  Sometimes I'm judgmental and sometimes I yell.

To be continued..