Breathe. Just Breathe.

Breathe 2016

 

Racing to camp for the kids. Preparing curriculum for next year. Helping to plan a wedding. Planning a major life event. Moving family out of state. One thing right after the other. Good things. All good things.

And yet, I’m overwhelmed. Feels like it’s coming to fast. No time to breathe. Can’t get it all done. Feels like I’m barely hanging on.

And then I realize why. I’m trying to do it all in my own power. Not resting in the peace and power of God.

Thank You, Lord, for Your Peace.

I am learning to breathe. Just breathe.

 

Timeless Wisdom from Grandma

This month would have marked my precious Grandmother’s birthday. The lessons and love that she instilled with me are very much a part of my life. I was privileged to honor her in a recent article in Fayette Woman magazine.  Enjoy.

Grandmom Ethel July 2016

Hugs and kisses. Ice cream cones on the front step as the summer sun sets in a haze. New experiences, new horizons, new conquests.  Continue reading Timeless Wisdom from Grandma

Someday

As I’ve reflected on the recent busyness of my life … for so many, many reasons … I wanted to share this once again.  It definitely hits home.

 

What I tell myself on those really really really long tiring motherhood days….

Someday my house will stay clean.

Someday the dishes will be done and cereal not spilled on the floor.

Someday the juice box straw wrappers won’t be stuck to the counter.

Someday there won’t be swings to push.

Continue to read at: “Someday” – Finding Joy

Don’t Take It At Face Value

Standardized test May 2016

It’s standardized testing season. And I have a perfectionist child. He wants to get everything right – the first time – without exception.

He finishes his practice test and discovers after checking his work, that he got several answers wrong relating to interdependence, cooperation, and wants vs needs. Initially, he was crushed, and came to me about it. Instead of immediately agreeing with his answers being incorrect according to the answer guide, I asked him to explain the answers he selected. I was taken aback. And thrilled. He’s an outside-the-box thinker. He doesn’t just accept the answer at face value. He thinks, reasons and examines.  And I don’t want to change that about him for anything in the world.

I love my little homeschool family. I love my creative thinkers. I’m ecstatic that he understands the answer that may be desired on the test and why, but can still defend his thoughts. It’s an amazing feeling to see his young mind at work.

He doesn’t just accept an answer at face value. Indeed, I’m raising individuals. And I love it.

This is What It Sounds Like …..

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Heartbroken.

I actually cried. It’s not often the death of someone famous brings me to actual tears. It’s a sad thing, yes. And I’m sorry to hear it.  But this death made me feel like … like … I lost a part of my history.
I adored Prince. The Purple Rain album (I had the one with the pullout poster) was the soundtrack of my teen years. My absolute favorite Prince song of all time …. When Doves Cry.  I felt alive. I felt invincible. I felt youthful.
I felt like I knew him, you know? Prince’s fearlessness, his originality, his complexities and feelings all wrapped up in his music, made him relatable … touchable … Yet he was unlike any other. He did things we wished we were brave enough to do.   And of course, my teenage crush made him seem bigger than life.
He’s irreplaceable. The doves are crying, and we’re crying with them.
Rest in peace, Prince Rogers Nelson.

Grateful … to be me

July - Happy blog 2

Ah… another year.  I woke up this morning with joy in my heart and peace in my spirit.  Of course I wanted to express it in my favorite way.  Writing!

I have so much to be thankful for.  I praise God that I know me – and love me!  (That was a process well worth the effort!) I’m thankful for patience with myself and others.  I’m thankful for a true loving giving partner in my husband. I’m thankful for my sons’ laughter and smiles. I’m thankful to do what I love – write, encourage and motivate others.  I’m thankful for loving supportive family and friends. And I’m thankful for a hope in and love for Jesus that brings peace that passes all understanding.

Thanks for sharing in this day with me.

 

 

 

It’s Like Another Christmas . . .

Easter basket March 2016

Easter baskets? Check. Plastic eggs? Check. Chocolates to go inside the plastic eggs? Check. Toys … toys …. oh, I had forgotten a special toy. I was attempting for create Easter baskets for my sons wanted to make sure I had all my bases covered. As I raced down the aisles looking for something nice, but not too over-the-top, I joked with another parent doing the same thing. “It’s like another Christmas,” I said. We shared a laugh.

Then I stopped. And thought. The most important thing to me about this upcoming Easter holiday is not that my kids have the perfect outfit for church, or have the perfect baskets, or get a desired treat. More than anything, I want them to know that there is a God who loves them so much, that He sent His Son to die for them. And then His Son, Jesus, rose!

I put away my hastily grabbed toys. Although I will still do something for them, my entire mindset has changed. It’s not the gifts that I give them that matter. It’s the gift they receive in their hearts. And His Name is Jesus.

Enjoy your Resurrection Day!

The Together Shirt …. Raising Up Parents

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My boys would not stop arguing this morning. I’d had enough. They are normally very sweet, considerate and get along well. But alas, it was one of those mornings. Out of patience, I decided to get creative with a solution. I stuck them together … literally … by wearing a huge Together Shirt.

They balked at first. Even cried, lol. Ah, I have a winner here. I grabbed one of my big shirts, squished the boys in, and voila, Together Shirt. I went back to work, pleased with myself.

A funny thing happened. They came up to me ten minutes later, asking if they could wear the shirt all day! It was fun, they said. They were reading, doing activities, and were pretending to be one big monster!  No fussing on my part, no yelling, no additional punishments – just teaching a valuable lesson to learn to work together.

How is this raising up parents? I read an article today about the rise in Kindergarten suspensions – Kindergarteners!!! For throwing chairs, bullying other kids, drugs, even lewd conduct. Sad. Disheartening. Also angering. And preventable.

Parents – where are you? What are you doing? Raising children is not a pastime or hobby. You don’t do it when you feel like it. You don’t get to decide when to pay attention and when to ignore. It involves time, effort, diligence, energy and patience! It also involves love, caring, sacrifice, and as you can see by my example, a little creativity. What is your “together shirt”? How do you reach your children? No answer? Then that is your answer. Get busy doing it. Now. Don’t know what to do? Get help from books, resources. Put in the time and effort.

In raising up your little ones,  you’ll find yourself growing, too.

Can I Do It? Yes, I Can

I Can Do It February 2016
Doing things on his own. Becoming more independent. Continuing to capture my heart. These are the things I looked forward to as my little guy turned five.
Figuring out what to do for his Kindergarten/First Grade curriculums … eh, not so much.
See, when I decided to homeschool my oldest son last year, I felt like he came primed and ready to go – after two years of private school, he had an awesome foundation. So I had full confidence that I could take him further, and help him soar. But my little guy has never been to a formal school, and all his education has come from … me. I started doubting myself. Would I be enough? Would I ensure he had the strong foundation he needed? Would I leave gaps? Would I make enough of the right choices for his curriculum and learning to help him achieve. In short, could I do it?
Then, our free online curriculum said it was time to teach him to add. And he did it. Joyously. Not just that, math is now his favorite thing. He wants to add again and again and again. And he’s reading. I mean, like, real words! My eyes welled up with tears. Not just because he can do the schoolwork, not just because he’s advancing, but because I gained confidence in my ability to teach him. God has blessed me with this incredible responsibility. And with His help and His grace, I can do all things. So can I do this? Yes, I can.