This has been my view for the past 8 evenings. I am so in love with the sunset. I've taken numerous pictures and each and every one is unique and lovely in it's own way. This vacation has been a renewal for me. A much needed one too. It's been relaxing, it's been fun, it's been filled with quality family time and reconnections with good old friends. I don't want it to end. We have a few more days and I will certainly miss waking up to the glistening sun on the lake and watching the beautiful sunset each evening. This has been our little escape from reality and I am enjoying every moment. Before we know it, we'll be back to our busy non-stop days. Days on the water watching the girls learn to water ski; nights sitting on the dock with a glass of wine watching the sunset have taught me a very important lesson. It is to cherish each and every moment we have together. I have to say I am doing just that.
I don't know about you, but I am ready for summer! There are seven days of school left and I am dragging. I don't feel like making and packing lunches every night; I certainly don't feel like waking the girls up at 6:00am every morning. Yes, I am counting the days along with the kiddos. Even though we will have a busy summer schedule; it is more relaxed and calm. There is no specific time or place that we must be.
Do you have a summer schedule or are you taking it day by day? It's hard to keep kids busy each summer day? I've decided this year we are going to break our day into sections. I'm going to start my day getting up before the girls and going to the gym. That way I will feel better and be able to handle whatever the day throws my way. Then we will have "reading, writing and math practice." I've found some good apps for the I-pad and I've ordered "Handwriting without Tears" books to practice writing and spelling. After our hour or so of "summer school" we will get ready for the pool or beach. When we come home for some short quiet time. This will be the tricky part but between I-pads, Kindle's and a computer I think they can handle the 30-45 minutes of quiet. Then they can have outside play and I will start prepping for dinner. We always have more outside time after dinner then our bedtime routine begins.
Of course, there will be days when we are moving things around and we may not keep to our "loose" schedule. It is more for me than the kids. I need to have things in my bucket to keep them entertained. There are a ton of wonderful ideas on Pinterest and other websites if you are looking for some ways to entertain the kids. We also have a lot of day trips and family vacations planned which we are all excited about.
Summer is a time of fun, but for some parents it can be a time of stress (having the kids home all day can be tricky). Don't let it stress you out. Make the best of the time together and relax. It's only approximately ten weeks and the big yellow school bus will be pulling around the corner again!
Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”
― John Lubbock, The Use Of Life
Why do some people seem wired to worry and others just live their life with ease? I am usually falling under the first scenario. However, I am learning. I am learning to let the worry go and focus on the things I can change. Worrying doesn't get us anywhere except higher blood pressure!
It certainly isn't easy. Parenting gives us many, many reasons to worry.
Does my child have friends in school?
Are his or her grades on track?
Are they safe when they get to school?
The list could go on and on. Some of these we can control. We can have our children study and try their best. We can build their self esteem so they are comfortable to meet new people. We can teach them stranger safety and what to do in case of an emergency. We cannot keep them in a bubble (although I know we try).
I want my girls to enjoy and savor life's moments. Yes, I want them to be street smart and aware of their environment; I do not want them to be scared to try new things. I want them to leave the worrying to me (remember I am learning to let it go).
Life on earth is too short. We never know when our life is going to have a dramatic change. I want to teach my girls to live each day to the fullest. Follow your dreams and follow your heart. I hope inside those moments you will find God leading you in the right direction.
Do not worry if you have built your castles in the air. They are where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.
~Henry David Thoreau
This is what the sky looks like today. We are covered in grey, thunderous clouds. It's not as nasty as some parts of the country. My heart goes out to those affected by the tornadoes and storms the past few days.
I don't know what it is about a rainy day, but I so wish I had time to crawl up on the couch with my book and a cup of tea. Either that or I wish I could take a nap. There is something about sleeping while hearing the rain outside, that completely relaxes me.
My head sort of feels like a storm today too. I have a zillion and one thoughts on my mind, and I'm not sure how to deal with them all.
Since, I don't have time to crawl up on the couch or take a nap; I will move on and get my things accomplished. Enjoy this stormy day y'all. Stay safe and dry.
I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship.
Louisa May Alcott
Sitting on the beach. Taking in the salt air, the sand between my toes, the sound of the waves crashing on the shore.
For me, this is serenity. My whole being feels at peace here (maybe it's because I'm alone while the kiddos are still in school :-) I think its a little of both).
I'm doing one of my favorite activities- reading. I actually just finished my book and I am looking out at the ocean remembering all the good times at the beach when I was younger.
I am feeling very thankful today.
Being thankful for how God can make something beautiful out of something horrible. Loss deepens who we are; it brings us to places we never knew existed. It strengthens us in our weakest season of life.
I've learned that if we let him; God will wrap his arms around us and never let us go especially in our ugliest most needful moments.
I don't always understand the journey but I am trying to trust it. Life is hard, but it is also full of hope. We aren't promised a life with no disappointments or heartaches; but we are promised hope.
My favorite place to be when I need to feel calm and balanced is the beach. I love everything about this spot...I hope I can come here more often.
Have a great day y'all.
Did you ever go into a pet store and watch the hamsters or gerbils on their exercise wheel? Perhaps you had one of these creatures (sorry they remind me of rats) when you were young. Sometimes I feel like a gerbil on my wheel....just going around and around; not much change in the environment. When we are having this feeling, we need to jump off that wheel and run!
Nothing can change if we are stagnant for extended periods of time. This is true physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I've experienced too many losses in the past few years and have decided I need to make a change. I cannot continue to "just wish" that my fate is different. I need to take charge and do what I can right NOW to make it better (for me and my family). So, I am making changes. I am making physical changes and emotional changes which will then lead to mental and spiritual change. I'm excited and I know I will feel better in the long run.
I started today with a great workout in the gym (reading my scripture while on the elliptical- hey, as long as you fit it in), then a walk on the beach (one of my favorite places in the world) and yoga. Then I rushed home, took a 2 second shower, threw my hair up, picked up my youngest from preschool and went to serve birthday cake at my daughter's school. Then we came home to laundry, cleaning etc. Now, I am finally able to sit for a few minutes before the older two get off the bus and write (my other love). Why is this such a big deal? Well, because even a few weeks ago I would have skipped the walk on the beach and yoga because I wanted to be nicely dressed and showered for my daughter's school....does it really matter? I was clean and dressed, just not totally put together. What matters is that I made time for myself and for the things that bring peace to my life. I love exercising and feel so much better when I can do it. I love yoga and it keeps my back feeling great so I can then do everything else like walk =)
I think back to a year ago when I couldn't even get myself out of bed or dressed because my back was in so much pain. After months of physical therapy, cortisone shots and finally finding the right chiropractor I am back to feeling pretty good. So, yes it does matter that I was able to fit in the things that make me feel good. Of course there will be days that are busy and filled with activity, but I am learning. I am learning to prioritize. I am learning to make myself feel just as important as I make everyone else. Won't you give it a try?
“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature.” — Anne Frank
This is without a doubt my favorite time of year. The next three days are such amazing, inspiring yet humbling days. For me, they are a renewal of life. It is another chance to start fresh. They are also a reminder of how much we are loved.
Enjoy this precious time with your loved ones. Happy Easter Everyone!
I found this image online and thought it was so beautiful....
My five and half year old won a stuffed animal cow at the festival this past weekend. It was one of those "pick a duck you get a prize" games...hence, not the highest quality material. She loves this cow named "Moo Moo." The next day she was swinging the cow around by it's arm (after being warned not to of course). She continued and long behold the cow's arm tore. I told her I would sew it and it would be fixed up. That is exactly what I did and she was so pleased. One would think that cow was made of gold or something...she loves it and has been sleeping with it each night since.
Don't you wish all hurdles were that easy to get over? When you fall, you could just patch it up and all would be healed. Relationships can be tricky. They can be difficult to manage at times. Different things make different people tick and sometimes it isn't that simple to figure it out.
I'm the type of person who analyzes scenarios and converstaions over and over in my head. Sometimes I get myself so worked up and stressed over things I may have said or done. I try really hard to be a good person. I am trying harder to think through my words before I let them slip through my lips. I also know that sometimes we can be saying all the right words but it doesn't matter. The person on the receiving end does not want to hear it or for whatever reason does not want to believe it. When this occurs, I try to let it go. LET IT GO (alright, I've seen Frozen one too many times).
I am learning that we can't always make people happy. The imporant thing to remember is "Did we do what was right and just?" If we did, then there is nothing else to be done.
I read somewhere that God is more concerned with the attitude of our heart. I love that. If you are listening to your heart and choosing to show God's love than it may not be the "easy" thing but it certainly will be the right thing.
Love one another and you will be happy. It's as simple and as difficult as that. ~ Michael Leunig
Sometimes all we need to do is listen to our children. I am trying very hard to get us all into our normal routine and keep us on track. My mind is so preoccupied and I've caught myself stopping in my tracks because a wave of sadness sweeps over me. I took my youngest two girls to swim lessons on a day we were not scheduled and we sat there wondering why they weren't being called; then it dawned on me that I had my days confused. Grief is a funny thing. It consumes you if you let it. I am trying to not let it, but at the same time I need to let these feelings out.
Today I was reading something and it reminded me of my Aunt. My eyes teared up and I started to cry. My three year old came over and asked me why I was crying. I told her I was feeling sad and missed Aunt Cici. She looked me straight in the eye and said, "Don't be sad Mama Aunt Cici is with Jesus."
I took a deep breath and said, "You're right honey, she is." Then a sense of calmness and peace took over. My three year old is right. Yes, it is sad and lonely for us left behind, but how magnificent is it for my Aunt. She is with our loved ones that went before her and she is in Jesus' hands. Nothing else matters.
This was one of my Aunt's favorite poems and one of my favorites too. I carry it with me in my purse, because sometimes I need to be reminded that he never leaves me.
Why is it after we lose a loved one we always seem to have a brown box full of memories. I have many of these boxes filled with pictures, old greeting cards, newspaper clippings etc. Some of them have very intimate, personal meaning to me and others not so much. Either way, it seems I cannot dispose of these items. So, I go through them tears streaming down my face as I glance through what feels to me "my life in a box." I know there is more to it (my life), but right now that is how I feel and it is a lonely feeling. I know in my head I am not alone...I have a loving husband and three wonderful daughters in addition to extended family. I can't seem to tell my heart this though...my heart aches for my parents and my Aunt. These were the people closest to me that I shared my every day occurences. These were the people who could tell by my voice that something was bothering me. Now, I don't have that and I am trying to find a way to cope and move on. I know in my head that we WILL be reunited someday and it will be a glorious reunion. For now, I have to hold on to my box full of memories.
Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose. ~From the television show The Wonder Years