I'm not sure why it takes me so long to grasp certain ideas. Maybe it is my Irish stubbornness or maybe it is just not the right time in my life. Our lives consist of many different seasons; childhood, teenage years, college, first job, marriage, child rearing years (this seems to last the longest), retirement etc. In each stage or season, our priorities shift and we have to adjust our lives. For some of us, it means we learn new and better values as we age. We gain experience from the previous season of our life and we take it with us into the next.
For me being in the child-rearing season is hard work. It is busy, busy and even more busy. I find myself constantly running around and if I am not careful I am totally consumed in activities; that I lose sight of what is REALLY important in my life (Faith, Family, Fitness just to name a few). I heard someone say the other day "Who says we have to do it ALL in every season." This resonates so loudly for me right now. I have got to slow down. My mind, body and definitely my soul need it. I've got to remind myself that it is okay to say, "No, I'm sorry not right now." I need to remind myself I can say "Not right now" to volunteering, to my children's requests, to my family and friends. It's okay and it's needed.
When we allow ourselves to get caught up in all the busyness of life, we lose sight of our priorities. I am making a choice today to not let that happen. I am shifting things around for my current season and I am so excited for the change.
Don't waste your breath proclaiming what's really important to you. How you spend your time says it all. ~ Anonymous
The other day during a conversation with my five year old, she asked me how God was everywhere at the same time. This is difficult to explain to an adult let alone a five year old. I tried my best and my answer seemed to settle her quest for knowledge for the moment. Then, my three year old says, "God is where you need." I thought to myself, "Yes, honey he is." Then I had a huge lump in my throat because I love that she provided that answer. I don't know how much she understands, being three and all. The important aspect is that she knows God is here when we need him.
I try hard to teach my children that they should be thankful and grateful for the blessings in their lives. I hope to instill in them that we need to talk to and thank God even when things are difficult for us. This is not always easy. I believe when we are facing adversity God wants us to call out to him. I also believe when we are celebrating he too wants us to call out to him. Growing in faith is an ongoing relationship with our Lord.
A few mornings ago the sky was a beautiful pink when my girls were catching the school bus. My five year old stopped in her tracks and looked up in awe. She turned to me and said, "Look Mama how beautiful." I agreed and she said, "I want to thank God for a beautiful sky today."
I hope that you can find a reason to say thank you today!
Courtesies of a small and trivial character are the ones which strike deepest in the grateful and appreciating heart. ~Henry Clay
I often find myself "wondering" about this or that. Do y'all ever let your mind just wander and see what thoughts it leads you to? It's not easy. In fact, to my surprise it takes quite a bit of discipline. I know as a busy parent and wife my mind is constantly going. I have a million plus things on my "to-do" list and even more behind those. I am forever thinking about my children and how to be a better mother to them. I think about my husband and how I can be a more affectionate, selfless wife to him. Then, there are ALL the other things that come into mind-Am I being the best Christian I can be, my family and friends' health, MONEY...you get the picture. The list goes on and on.
To be able to sit in quiet and let your mind wander is a gift. Quite frankly I think it is a talent too. When we let our busy thoughts take over, we feel anxious and never quite satisfied with where we are. If we put those things aside (even if it is for 15 minutes) we can really try to truly find peace within ourselves.
There is a lot to be nervous about when we are spouses and parents. More so, there is a lot to be thankful for. In the blink of an eye, our lives can change and we are reminded how precious each life is. So, friends today I am trying to find those rare few minutes where I can sit and be quiet. I want to let my worries escape and my anxiety fall to the floor. I want to sit with my eyes closed and listen. Maybe I am listening for God's wisdom or advice? I'm not exactly sure, but I know I will feel better in the end.
I hope that you can take a few minutes or more to find some peace today.
It is only when we silent the blaring sounds of our daily existence that we can finally hear the whispers of truth that life reveals to us, as it stands knocking on the doorsteps of our hearts. ~K.T. Jong
Some people are resolution makers others don't believe in them...Some people ring in the New Year with such joy and hope for a new start; For others, it is just another day...Either way, the New Year gives us a chance to look back on twelve months of our lives and examine them closely. In what areas do we wish to make changes? Did we have a wonderful, eventful year? Did we have a not so great year and look forward to a new one? Whatever your circumstances; January provides us with a fresh start.
Personally I have split feelings about new year resolutions. I love new beginnings and second chances especially if something truly needs to be changed. On the other hand, why do we feel the need to wait until January to make changes? Realistically, change can come at any given time. If we really want it to.
I feel if we make a huge list of resolutions, we are setting ourselves up for disappointment. Think about all the people that are signing up for gym memberships....will they still be active in March? I hope so, but if we TRULY deep down in our hearts and minds are not motivated, then we will be angry and upset with ourselves when we don't follow through. Unfortunately, I speak from experience. So, this year I decided to make goals, but they are reachable, attainable goals. It may take a year, but I am ready to make these changes. I'm not going to list my goals here, but I think the most difficult aspect for me is to prioritize my time. If I can accomplish that, then the rest will fall into place.
I hope that if you decided to go with New Year resolutions or goals that you too can make them happen. Find that inner voice, that drive deep down within and listen to it. Also, don't be so hard on yourself if you have a slip up. We are only human and it happens. Good luck to you and Happy New Year my friends!“May Light always surround you;
Hope kindle and rebound you.
May your Hurts turn to Healing;
Your Heart embrace Feeling.
May Wounds become Wisdom;
Every Kindness a Prism.
May Laughter infect you;
Your Passion resurrect you.
May Goodness inspire
your Deepest Desires.
Through all that you Reach For,
May your arms Never Tire.”
― D. Simone
The end of one year and the beginning of the next is always filled with such hope and aspirations. I wish each and every one of you a year filled with good health, peace and joy. I heard this the other day and just loved it: "May this year be a year filled with miracles."
We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day.
~Edith Lovejoy Pierce
Yes, this is such a busy week for everyone. Folks traveling, families reuniting; my hope for you is that you can find a moment to pause and reflect on the true meaning of Christmas. I hope that all of you have a wonderful holiday season with the ones you love most. May you continue your family traditions or even better start a new one!
Merry Christmas everyone!
May Peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through! ~Author Unknown
We were driving the other day and I caught the end of a very funny conversation between my eight year old and my five year old daughter. I'm not positive what the topic at hand was, but I hear my eight year old tell her sister, "Well, boys are like that...they are super weird." "They all have cooties." This catches my attention...I inconspicuously look in the rearview mirror as not to grab their attention. I see the look on my five year old's face...one of confusion...she then says, "Well, Daddy is a boy." Then my eight year old proceeds to tell her, "No, he doesn't count. He's different. He's Daddy." I find myself chuckling quietly. I look back again and they are both smiling and content with that answer. I think to myself, "Oh girls...please continue to think boys are weird or whatever for at least the next 10 to 12 years!!!" All boys of course for the exception of Daddy.They are so innocent and I love that about them. Some days I look at my eight year old and I can't believe my eyes. She is growing like a weed and in someways so grown up, but in other ways still my baby girl. I'd like to keep her my "baby girl" as long as I can. Kids are forced to grow up so fast in today's society. Let them be kids and enjoy their childhood as they are supposed to. “Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.”
― Dr. Seuss
I took this picture the other day while the girls were playing in the park. I love the clouds and the flag...so pretty and peaceful. As we close on this second week of Advent, a week of focusing on peace in our lives; I hope you were able to find some peace within yourself this week. Have a fantastic weekend!
Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves. ~Henry David Thoreau
What does peace mean to you? How do you find peace within yourself? In today's busy world with our overstuffed schedules and constant technology at our fingertips; it is too easy to occupy ourselves with "things" that we forget about stopping, standing still and just taking in the "moments" of this special time.
The other night when my family went to pick out our Christmas tree we experienced one of these moments. We arrived at our church and we were all excited to see what tree would come home with us. My middle daughter, 5 years old was SUPER excited. When she got to the lot she ran full speed yelling, "Christmas trees." The four or five men that were working had huge smiles on their faces and in that one or two minutes she managed to light up their night. Maybe they had a rough day, maybe they didn't really feel like standing there all night while people took their time finding a tree...but it didn't matter in those minutes because she made their night worth it. They all laughed and said, "Yay Christmas." It was really a special moment and my husband and I just glanced over at each other and smiled.
For me, these are moments of peace. No, it wasn't quiet, but it was truly special and we may never have that happen again. These are the "moments" that we need to stop and watch for. If you don't, they will quickly slip through your fingertips.
This week in Advent we focus on peace. What changes do you need to make in your life so that you can find more peace? I know I need to take more time to sit in peace during my day. I definitely get too caught up in my schedule and checking items off my to-do list that I let moments pass by. I am working hard on stopping and watching. I hope this week you can find some time to do the same.
We spend a great deal of time telling God what we think should be done, and not enough time waiting in the stillness for God to tell us what to do. ~Peace Pilgrim
Today is a day that I find myself having a heavy heart. My Mom passed away seven years ago today. It's hard to believe it has been that long. I feel as if it were yesterday. Today is also my Dad's birthday. He would have been 67 years old. For me, they both were taken much too soon. I miss you both and love you more than words.
I think, no matter where you stray,
That I shall go with you a way.
Though you may wander sweeter lands,
You will not soon forget my hands,
Nor yet the way I held my head,
Nor all the tremulous things I said.
You still will see me, small and white
And smiling, in the secret night,
And feel my arms about you when
The day comes fluttering back again.
I think, no matter where you be,
You’ll hold me in your memory
And keep my image, there without me,
By telling later loves about me.