Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Company, Serving and "Naturals"

I've always envied women who love to serve. You know, the ones who seem to derive great joy and fulfillment out of having people for supper, the night, coffee, you name it. The one's who actually enjoy the chance to take the men juice break and the school children hot lunch. My brother is in the area and came last night for supper. Even this threw me into a quandry of "what shall I make?" and when I thought I'd made up my mind, then I'd change it again. I even got mildly stressed over it all and definitely missed the joy part! Until he was actually here and we were having a good evening, that is. That's the thing. I almost always end up enjoying the company once the visit is actually in progress, so what's the big deal? I don't know. I just know that it takes a huge effort for me to invite company or offer to help with food projects. I guess instead of envying the "naturals" I should be grateful there are some around. If everyone were like me, invitations for Sunday lunch would be few and far between!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

10 things you might not know about me:

1) I drink tea in the morning. No coffee! 2) In order to accomplish things I must make lists. 3) My husband does 95% of our grocery shopping...and I like it! 4) I'd rather sew a whole new dress then pick apart and redo mistakes. 5) If I get a letter or anything good in the mail I read it right away! 6) I'd usually rather sit and quilt with ladies for a day then go shopping with them. 7) I'd much rather write a note/letter then pick up the phone and call! 8) I can only stand a mess and clutter for so long then it's gotta go! 9) I don't enjoy driving and can go somewhere w/ someone 6 times and still not be able to get there by myself. 10) I hate to be cold and would choose a hot summer day over a cold winter one any day! Have a happy Thursday :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Up against and stuck!

Do you ever come up against something, sit down and figure out what it is and then have no idea what you're gonna do with it? I was grouchy this week end and sat down to find out I'm homesick. Figured out that Mrs Loner Bethany gets lonely and craves friendships too. See, I AM a loner. Most of the time I can make it just fine by myself. Chris has been my best friend since I'm married and I haven't really had anyone else. But, I always had family for those times when I did need someone else. Here? Well, here there are no sisters and mom. Here if I need anyone besides me and my hubby I'm gonna have to do something more then talk to a few people after church. So, I've realized the cause for the grouchiness but I really dont wanna do anything with it! It's too hard so I'll just make it on my own, thank you. Truth is though, I'm lonely. There's some wonderful ladies here and I should just pick up the phone, make a visit, extend an invitation but the thot just stays that: a thot. Guess I'll just be grouchy! :)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Now I'm "Nobody like mom"!

Today is one of those days when I have a fleeting wish to not be a mom. I'm dying to get out of the house! I'd love to traipse off to town, visit my husband at work, sit at the library for hours (w/o keeping an eye on kids), meander through stores looking for things for ME.... Reality is, I've got a sick 3 yr old on the recliner and I'm not going anywhere. And, the truth is, I'm glad I'm her mom and there's no one else in the world who can take care of her like me! I remember how it felt to be sick as a kid and there was just no one quite like mom. No one else had the same soothing words and cool hands. No one else thought of exactly what you'd need to make you more comfy. It's a special role to fill and it's kinda thrilling to realize - I'm that person now! So, I'll be happy at home today, soothing, straightening covers, making toast, giving tylenol, brushing back hair.... Town will still be there tomorrow, or next week..... I hope!

Monday, January 16, 2012

What in all this world is grace? (Ann Voskamp ahead)

After an email this morning that shook my world, I found myself re-reading this: "What in the world, in a world of certain loss, is grace? If I am numbering gift moments to 1,000-what moments in my life count as blessings? If I name this moment as gift, grace, what IS the next moment? Curse? How do you know how to sift through a day, a life, and rightly read the graces, rightly ascertain the curses? What is good? What counts as grace? What is the heart of God? Do I believe in a God who rouses himself just now and then to spill a bit of benevolence on hemorrhaging humanity? A God who breaks through only now and then, surprises us w/ spared hand, a reprieve from sickness, a good job... and then finds Himself again too impotent to deal w/ all I see as suffering and evil? A God of sporadic, random, splattering goodness- that now and then splatters across a gratitude journal? Somebody tell me: WHAT ARE THE OTHER MOMENTS?..To read His message in moments, I'll need to..wear the lens of the Word.." All IS grace!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Confession is good for the soul...

On the rare chance that anybody reads this pathetic little blog, I feel you should know the real me. I posted this great speech yesterday about slowing down and the time before about savoring, etc etc. If you could have been a mouse in my kitchen last night I'm sure you would have been amazed. Shocked! I was a mess. Snapping, no, yelling at kids, frustrated with husband, shoulders tense, no smile lines whatsoever. Over what? Forgetting the salt, measuring baking powder with a tablespoon instead of a teaspoon, children whining, husband on the computer... O yeah! Huge, terrible things! All I wanted was to get to bed time so I could sleep and start over...oh, and throw that One Thousand Gifts book in the trash! :) Morning brings sanity and I realize that I want to have learned without the hard work of practice. Truth is, that's impossible! So, a new day... And I'm picking up my hammer to bang in a few more nails of practice. 544. Fuzzy blankets 545. Mercies New 546. Winter wonderland ...........

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Not an Emergency

Calm. Haste makes waste. Life is not an emergency. Life is brief and fleeting but it is not an emergency... Emergencies are sudden, unexpected events - but is anything under the sun unexpected to God? (Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts) I fell yesterday. In my rush to finish a phone call and get littles bundled and make it to school to pick up children, I wiped out. Slipped on the walkway and mud and sprained my big toe! God must have known I needed a visual to bring the truth of what I read home. Today I'm in forced slow mode! Maybe this will teach me to slow down more often. To really listen when my children talk, really pay attention to what their little imaginations are playing, really show love in my discipline, really take time to enter their worlds. How I fail in that! So today I'm sitting on the couch and hobbling around taking a lesson on slowing down. Do I really accomplish more in my rushing? In the things that matter for eternity, probably not. So, what am I living my life for? Now? Or eternity?

Monday, January 9, 2012

2012: Savor

Aaahhh! Loving this beautiful weather!! Love the invigorating feeling of hanging wash and raking leaves with blue sky above and sunshine and brisk air all around. Sometimes it feels like I'm living in a "pretend" world these 2 months in Daniel's trailer. It's the cutest little spot in the woods! Secluded by trees, yet close to neighbors and school. reminds me so much of our place in Arkansas. I am loving it here! Yet, always in the back of my mind there's this constant knowledge of 2 months. Rather fitting that I'm reading "One Thousand Gifts" bit by bit these days. I want so much to live this moment to the fullest and not worry about the future. I keep reminding myself "savor". Don't waste this moment. Savor savor savor. Taste it. Eat it slowly and carefully, letting all the flavors and juice spread and soak in. God is good all the time! What would I do without that foundation? I can't imagine and I'm so glad I don't have to! So, 2012, I'm out to savor every moment of you!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Open Hand

Joy. Happiness. It's what we spend our lives searching for. Anything that takes it away we stear clear of, rebel against, run from, struggle with. Is it safe to say that all our worries, struggles, fears... come from a reaction to threats against joy? True to say that it's our human way of trying to control circumstances and protect joy? God is shining His light through to me by His words delivered through Ann Voskamp. "Joy is a flame that glimmers only in the palm of an open and humble hand." "Palms curled into protective fists fill with darkness." "Bend the knee and...let God give what God chooses to give because *He only gives love* and whisper surprised thanks. This is the fuel for Joy's flame." How bright His light is in the dark places of my heart! I am gulping the words but need to spend time ruminating and digesting. Clothes sit in the washer, dishes pile up and children fight. I open my hand and begin to offer my thanks in the now, the everyday, this moment and then the next.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

"She shall be called woman..."

I've always been taught that a woman's place is at home, caring for her family. I believe that's what God intended when He took Adam's rib and formed a woman. I never realized the extent of the instinct God placed inside a woman until we moved 5 months ago. Like the geese flying south before winter hits, I discovered an inner compulsion to care for my family! We packed all but the necessities in boxes in AR and began life in OH. Suddenly I had no purpose. I got bored and depressed. We mothers often lament and sigh over our busy lives but I found myself longing for the need to be busy. I realized that the dirty clothes, dishes, faces, bathrooms and floors all screaming for my attention were, in fact, gifts of purpose and a reason to live! That organizing and caring for my own little nest and creating "home" for my man and littles is my very life breath! The first few days in our "2 month" trailer were spent soaking up common tasks like a long overdue bath. What a gift!