A Lot Horrible…and A Little Good…

I am sitting with a warm cup of coffee and listening to Christmas music as my boys build wooden blocks on the floor.

Yes, I know it’s bit early for Christmas music…but I just can’t help myself.

I know that some are saddened that the hot weather has passed, but I have to say that I absolutely love this time of year.

The chill in the air, the coziness I feel in a warm sweater and baking seems so much more appropriate than in the summer.

I think warm fresh bread tastes better in the Fall and Winter.

Yesterday my five-year old son was asking to try a sip of my warm decaf-coffee. I humored him and waited for the response I’d get after he tried it.

He looked very thoughtful for a moment and said…“Well mommy…It’s a lot horrible…and a little good”. He got me thinking, as often my boys do with light bulb moments that remind me check in with my personal thought life.

It reminded me that far to often I allow one negative thing in my twenty-four hour days to dictate how my whole day is viewed.

The day can be going beautifully and there can be a terrible smudge that appears…a child misbehaving..an argument between brothers…so many good things can occur in a day….but then my positive view the day becomes destroyed. Just one minute is all it takes. Homeschooling has been a tremendous blessing, but there are those moments when you wish the school bus would come pick them all up. ( In a moment of frustration.)

Do you ever have this happen? Frustration attempts to take hold of your day…plowing through even  the most positive of days. Just that one event or moment takes charge of your attitude toward the rest of your day.

I have in fact been working on this in my heart and my head. Praying God would make me aware of my attitude and how I view the very breath He gave me…each second…not to neglect joy that He provides in my life, even when ugliness occurs.

So my goal this week is to make a habit of happiness.

When the things that make my day dark occur…I want to get through them and come out the other side still thankful and appreciative of the day, regardless of its bumps and pot holes that attempt to flatten my tires and take me off my path.

Be encouraged in moments like these.We can pass through the dark clouds and return to the bright day of sunshine first with the help and strength of the Lord, and our willingness to be aware and be prepared..to be proactive about the outcome of our attitude.

Dear God…

Last night my husband was working late so for dinner it was just my 3 boys and I at the dinner table.

I asked if anyone wanted to ask the blessing for the food. My four-year old  middle son piped up

“I will ask the blessing”.

He proceeded.

“Dear God ,

Please help me to not have bad dreams,Please help me not to be bad, And please help me not to be badder, In Jesus Name

                                                            Amen.”

As he prayed a smile grazed my face at to the cuteness of his prayer.

He’d made no mention of food ( the main reason for our prayer time)and spoke only of what was on his mind and heart.

Yet the simplicity and pureness of it I envied.

Although God’s grace is free for the taking, and it is all sufficient…It seems we work so hard at proving ourselves to the Lord and trying too hard to impress Him.

Often I find we work too hard at sounding “grown-up” in our words we forget  the truth in the simplicity of  honesty when coming

before the Lord.

He already knows what’s on our hearts, he just wants to hear it from our lips.

Anytime is a good time for prayer, no matter

if you’re sitting down to eat, folding laundry or even cleaning the toilets.

Anytime is appropriate. No need for ritual or

waiting for the appropriate time or specific words.

So instead of trying to impress God with round about prayers and fancy words, ask Him to lay on your heart

what needs praying for. The simple act of listening for His Word and responding. He will give the words to speak.

*Matthew 18:1-4

“At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”  He called a little child and had him stand among them.  And he said:  “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” 


*James 4:10

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

*Luke 18:17

I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

Take time in the Word and ask the Lord what you can pray for. He can give us the humble heart of a child.

Prepare a Warm Welcome…

Before guests come, the floor is vacuumed, house dusted, the bathrooms cleaned, and the random household items and piles laying about are picked up and removed from sight. I love to prepare for special guests to come to our home. I want it to be a nice experience.

As I think on this I am reminded of something often forgotten.

Our families.

Do we keep our homes prepared nicely for our children to enjoy? Fresh clean sheets to sleep on?

An orderly home with low visible mess?

Do we put as much effort in our home for our families as we do for those special guests?

Are we teaching our children through our actions the importance of taking care of what we have, being a good steward daily of the things we’ve been blessed with?

Do we get excited about the moment our  husbands walk through the door at the end of a

very long day?

Will he feel welcomed into a warm environment?

Are things picked up?

Do they walk into a comfortable and clean home?
I ask you these questions because I ask them of myself.

Why is it so important to prepare and give our greatest for others when the ones we love the most

get the crumbs?

I feel it is so important to show our family that we love and appreciate them with gifts of service.

Letting them know that they are worth it.

Are your families getting your leftovers? Are you trying to give to others in service (which is fantastic), but leaving your family in the dust? Let’s not forget that the everyday things in our lives matter more than we know.

Kicking and Screaming!!!!

The morning had begun with a feeling of  fog and edginess. Woken up to three boys toppling over each other into our bed.
My brain was refusing to wake up and quite frankly I didn’t feel like it.

After rising, retrieving a warm cup of coffee and gobbling up a muffin I had already decided this wasn’t going to be a good day for schooling right away. After 2 weeks of colds and pink eye, we’d been quarantined to our home and I think today was starting to represent the cabin fever and overload I was beginning to feel.
We got dressed and headed to the store for some new jeans.

 My poor boys have been walking around with high waters on lately because of the rapidness of their growth, and slowness of my jean purchases.
The jeans purchase was successful.

My oldest asked if we could swing by the book store on the way home. A great place to go, I thought. The children’s area fantastic for young and old. A train table and books galore.
As our successful trip was coming to a close.. my oldest and I had been seeking out some good reading material. Six good chapter books and Test Prep book that I had been looking for.

On our way out I stopped…I shouldn’t have…just to look through the education section…just one more peek…the shopping trip had been fairly uneventful.
Then it happened…IT….Happened….The Dam broke…

Cyring Child

My 4 year sat on the floor…began to scream and cry. To insist his legs no longer worked. I covered his mouth in the attempt to stifle the loudness of his cries..in order that I could hear my myself think…so that I could explain his demise if the temper tantrum didn’t stop.

If I would have been smart I would have left immediately, but we’d spent so much time looking for good reading material…I hated to forgo the purchase.
I went to the front pushing my 2 year old in the stroller…my 7 year old wondering behind…looking around slowly as I hurried to the front. Just praying that no one would notice the crying child in my arms.
I sat him on the floor to pay, he remained upset..refusing to stand…looking as though he’d been left for the wolves and he was devastated. I was cheerfully talking to the clerk as my insides were dying in embarrassment and I was completely horrified.
On our ride home I was thinking ahead to how I was going to handle my 4 year old and how to discipline him once we arrived home.
When all was said and done and all was dealt with once home, I sat down exhausted and starting to think.
I woke up feeling just like my 4 year old acted. Quite frankly, I wanted to kick and scream most of the day.
In fact, the way I responded to my children today wasn’t very kind, and I know for a fact I was much kinder to the clerk at the store than I had been to my children the whole morning.

Hmm……I began to wonder if maybe I had been frustrating my children. Maybe I myself was at least 80% of the problem…
I know when someone is short with me, impatient and who’s words are loving and kind…I want often become hurt and often get angry or want to cry.

This was a good lesson learned for me. In spite of all that occurred. It turned out very positive. My 4 year asked for forgiveness for his temper tantrum ,disobeying and for causing “confusion and delay” (as said in his favorite t.v show , Thomas the tank engine). I then asked for his forgiveness for my ugliness…and for being very impatient. He forgived me and we hugged.

What a precious moment. To forgive and be forgiven all at the same time. It’s quite humbling. Although the day began rough and bumpy, I feel it will resume with a lot more kindness and patience on my part.
Sometimes we as parents are the one’s who really need the discipline. It’s not an easy way to grow, but it works!

Ready….Set……Where’s My Go?

Do you ever find yourself on auto pilot? Running
 about the house…preparing…doing…getting…forgetting…doing again….and finally done. (We think things are done, but really there is always more, right?)

Often as I am gathering things up that need to be picked up…put away..or taken with me….I realize that I am clearly in a never ending cycle like a hamster  running in it’s wheel.

Although this is often the case I still find the task of Homemaker very rewarding. I love to see the outcome of a freshly cleaned house, a newly made bed and a fresh scent that lingers in our home.

My difficulty lies in the Ready…Set… Go of the day!

To accomplish all of this…and get dressed…and to make sure the children are ready…and to just get out the door to whatever appointment or place we’ve planned to go that day is the BIGGEST challenge.
Once the children respond that YES in fact they are dressed…teeth brushed..and beds made…
I often discover their seems to be a large crack in the preparedness of our readiness…..
Maybe…no underwear on a particular child…..a church shirt with sweat pants (maybe it’s just my issue of embarrassment for me)…..or the never ending cycle discovering the children have not finished their list of things to do….
“Go to the door and put your shoes and jacket on please”. I say. Four minutes later I approach the door. One child clearly missed the directions….no shoes…sitting but playing with some miscellaneous toy or teasing his brother.
Another….no shoes….playing piano….another child…putting on his BIG brothers shoes that will clearly trip him due to the largeness on their size compared to his little feet. (At least he tried, right?)
This my friends is the cycle! We Get Ready….We Get Set…and then somewhere in the midst of all the preparation we loose our ability to Go!
Can you relate to this? Just going to the store….church….anywhere…just going….
I hope you can find your Go today and that the preparation of your day goes smoothly.
To all those Enlisted in this Life of Motherhood….Good Luck to you Ladies!
I will be praying for you!
Ready…Set…..GO!

The "Gravity" of the Situation

As the boys and I were finishing up lunch today I asked them what they would really like for Christmas. My 4 year old lept at the chance to answer. “I would like a slide the goes up to the moon amd all the way back down earth again”!
All I could think was “How am I going to explain this one”?
My normal response would be “Sweetheart, that costs more than we have” or the other usual one “Think about it, you might change your mind and decide on something else”. Unfortunately niether response applied.
This time I rethought what I was to say for a little while longer than my regular “go to” phrases.
I hated to burst his bubble and inform him that it was impossible without stomping on his wonderful imagination.
What should I say to encourage his imagination while explaining the facts.
Before I had time to respond, my tremendously cautious and serious about everything 7 year old blurted out “You can’t do that, you would fall to earth and die”! “Gravity would pull you down off of the slide”!

Well, needless to say I tried to clean up the “death” issue and discussed why we don’t speak that way to our little brother and somewhere in the middle of it created some sort of a science lesson of sorts on “Gravity”.

As I was cleaning up lunch and watching the welcomed falling snow out our kitchen window I was reminded of how wonderful it is to think like a child.
To use ones imagination in such a fun and creative way.
So often I get so caught up in daily tasks that require household labor or child rearing that I forget to allow the fun to creep in. Often the enjoyment tends to lye around the edges of whatever I might be involved in.
I’m ready for a change, how about you?

Imagination, what a horrible thing to waste!

There is a Purpose!

I love my boys dearly! They are more precious to me than just about anything I can think of. Only God and my husband come before them.
Yet, there are those days that I loose my patience…I want to go to my room and hide in my closet. Now, I know that sounds a little dramatic, but that’s just me. When there is too much whinning,fussing or confusion, I often feel like I may just loose it.I have to rememer to discipline with love and not show myself in anger.
Thankfully, if I have a few moments to gain my composure, I can generally hop back on board the Mommy train.
I am reminded (once again)of God’s patience with me. He puts up with an awful lot from me! My stubborness, and well let’s just say there is quite a long list, I am sure of it!

The days are filled with instruction,schooling,discipling, feeding, bathing…you name it, we as Moms do it…right?
Just remember God has a plan for all of this. He is using us to build His kingdom. He needs us to nurture leaders for Him.
As many hats as we wear, Wife, Mother ,daughter, friend….and maid=)
He has a reason and purpose for all of it.
So when you get discouraged and want to run and hide from noise and confusion, remember…there is a reason for all of it. In time we will see it….just have faith…He is in control..we just need to relingquish it.

Those little fingerprints we clean off our windows will one day not be there. They will be big hands that hopefully will be leading others tho the Lord and discipling others as they grow.

There is purpsose to it all.

Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.
~Philippians 1:6