Posts Tagged With: Blogging

My Happy Place

I’m typing this one-fingered on my iPad (something that drives my husband crazy!) from the rocking chair. My left leg bounces up and down and my fingers run through a two-year-old’s blonde hair. His blue eyes hidden under heavy eyelids and long lashes. A rare moment I seldom get to enjoy, but today…today I will. The dishes wait, the toys strung from one room to the next sit. This. Nothing in the world could compare to this.

For the past few weeks I’ve been thinking about “my happy place,” thanks to my dear friend Marla who writes a beautiful blog, Pendulum World. After being challenged by another blogger and writing about hers, she challenged me along with a few others to write about mine. Let me first tell you about Marla. I’ve never met her in person, but she has a way of making you feel like an old friend. She writes words of encouragement and often reminds me of what this life is really all about. I’m so thankful for her friendship and how she has touched my life.

Last year for the 100th day of school our son was asked to bring in 100 of something. For days I proposed ideas as we sat around the dinner table and watched as my husband’s face twisted in mocking smirks.

“How about we make a treasure box and paint it, then fill it with 100 gold coins? You could wear a pirate costume when it’s your turn to present. Eh?” Brilliant.

Now, here’s just a simple example of how my dear husband and I are complete polar opposites (for what it’s worth, we are living proof that opposites really can attract!).

My husband smirks. “R, Mom is crazy. Here’s a $1 bill. Take it in and say it’s 100 cents. Easy. Done.”

“So typical!” I’d think. “Sure, take the easy, straight-forward route. So engineery.”

Our proposals went back-and-forth for days. Finally a decision was made. R put together a cute little photo album with a title on the front, “100 People, Places, and Things I Love.” Each photo protector held a picture of someone or something near and dear to him with a label of what it was. I was a proud mama, and even my “this project is way too frilly and time consuming” husband thought it turned out pretty darn cute.

I won’t put 100, but I thought I’d share my happy place(s) with you through pictures. Like Marla said in her post, being with people I love is where I find joy. They are what makes life full and happy, and I’m so thankful for those who have shared their lives with me. So, without further ado, here are my “people, places and things I love,” or “my happy place.”

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Being with my family

...and more family

…and more family (thanks, katiejanephotos.blogspot.com 🙂 )

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Sailing on our boat

Hiking

Hiking

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Places that bring back special memories

Here, one of the most beautiful places on earth

Here, one of the most beautiful places on earth

Here, because of all the peace, joy, and completeness it represents in my life

Here, because of all the peace, joy, and completeness it represents in my life

Running (and being) with friends

Running (and being) with friends

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Being with my kids

I’m so glad Marla challenged me to think about what brings me happiness. With the start of a new year, I hope we can all look back and remember those people, those moments, those places that we find joy. And this year I hope we can all share our joy with others.

As these traveling posts go, I have thought about some bloggers to pass the “happy place” challenge to. Of course, I don’t want to make anyone feel obligated to do it, but if you would like, I’d love to read yours.

Shape Up Cupcake— Kristen and I go way back to volleyball freshman year of high school, guitar class, soccer, and sleep overs. She is amazing! I feel honored to call her my friend after all these years. She is such a inspiration to me and so many others.

A prompt reply— Torrie has quickly become a good friend. Being in different walks of life, I love to hear her view from where she stands, with adult and teenage boys. Her advice and words of wisdom is always something I appreciate.

Sensitive and Extraordinary— Leila is such a kind person. I have loved getting to know her through her blog and reading her thoughts on raising children. She has been a huge help to me as a beginner in the self-publishing adventure, always answering my questions and sharing her experience and knowledge.

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Categories: Happiness | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Leap of Faith

But what if I fail?…”

Can I tell you a secret? Blogging terrifies me.

I’m a relatively private person. Telling the world my feelings, my experiences, my stories, my life, that kinda intimidates me. In some ways I’m still shocked that I took the plunge and wrote that first post nine months ago. I served myself and everything I stand for on a silver platter for anyone in the entire world to read, critique, judge, enjoy, or mock.

What if no one reads my posts?
What if people read it and don’t like it?
What if I offend someone and they make ugly comments?
What if I can’t come up with a story?
What if I say too much?
What if the people following me via email feel like I fill their inbox with senseless garbage and wish they’d never signed up?

But among all the doubts and worries, I mustered up the courage and chose to hope. I stepped up to the edge and held my breath, assuring myself that if even just one person would read and like what I had to say, it’d be worth it.

To my dear friends and family, to the sweet friends I have found along the way, to those who have trusted me with the precious gift of your time, who have allowed me space in your email inbox, who have commented, liked, encouraged, cheered me on, and clicked on my site, it has meant the world. Your words have made me laugh, cry, and brought such sweet joy to my day. You have given me hope.

IMG_5180So now I’ve taken another giant leap out of my comfort zone. I feel vulnerable and incredibly silly all over again. But if I have learned anything in the past months of writing and posting my stories, it’s that we never know unless we try. I signed up to be a part of “Top Mommy Blogs.” I very recently learned about it through my sweet friend, Marla at A Pendulum World (who you should go see, because she is amazing and her blog is so refreshing, down-to-earth and all-around awesome). It’s basically a directory of blogs that parents write. The way it works is that if people click on my button to vote for me, my blog will become more accessible to those searching for things I write about. Up to this point I’ve simply wrote. I haven’t really reached out. I feel a bit ridiculous writing this, but I feel like it’s time to stretch myself a bit. Just like before, I’ll need your help. If you enjoy my posts, please click on the “Mommy Blog Badge” off to the side (or in this post) once a day as often as you like. That’s all you have to do! When you get done reading my latest post, just give it a good click. I would appreciate your help so very, very much! (And while you’re at it, maybe you could check out A Pendulum World and vote for Marla as well. 🙂 )

imageI hope you, too, can take that risk you’ve been contemplating. Do something totally unexpected, totally life changing, totally wonderful. It might seem out of character, you might feel incredibly vulnerable and maybe a bit silly. But you’ll never know unless you step up to the edge. Here’s to all of us, you and me, taking leaps of faith in this journey of life.

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“…But oh my darling, what if you fly?”

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Common Sense Life Lessons I Hope My Sons Will Learn (and FAST!)

A wise mother once told me that the early years of raising children has the longest days and the shortest weeks.

When my oldest boys were about 1 1/2 and 3 1/2 my husband went on a two-week-long work trip. Being the dead of winter and hovering below ten degrees most days, my boys and I were pretty much confined to our house. On one particular day during those two weeks, I remember my patience had been exhausted and my creative juices had completely run dry. Knowing it was a little early, but not quite sure how much, I started our bedtime routine. Fed, bathed, teeth brushed, stories read, I was just about to tuck them in to their warm covers when I glanced at the clock. 4:30. 4:30?? I can’t remember for sure, but I just might have cried.

That cold, long, winter afternoon seems like just yesterday. IMG_2843Six short years ago this week I became a mother. Holding that sweet little miracle in my arms I remember feeling an overwhelming responsibility to teach him as he grew up. To help him reach his potential, to be a kind, considerate, healthy, smart person who went out in the world humble yet confident. Who could make a difference for the better. HPIM0821 HPIM0883Every long day, every short week, every year that flies by I still feel that overwhelming responsibility and I question if I have done a good enough job. I imagine that feeling never really goes away. IMG_5718 IMG_4479Feeding on that desire to teach my children and help them as they navigate this crazy life, six months ago I started this blog. I started it with the intention to write about the life lessons I hope my three sons will learn. My hope was that by writing them down, I could organize my thoughts and record stories that have shaped our lives. Maybe even someday my boys will care to read them and see the vision and faith I had in them and who they could become. Or just roll their eyes at their bizarre mother and all her ridiculousness.

In honor of our oldest’s birthday this week and our next one’s coming up this month too, plus Catching Crawfish’s half-birthday, over the past four days my husband and I have kept a list of some of the more (what we thought to be) common sense life lessons we hope our sons will learn. Here are the top 17 things we’ve caught ourselves saying to our sons in desperate hopes that they will learn… And honestly, I hope they learn them FAST!

1. I try to feed you well. You really don’t have to sample the worms in our garden.

2. You’re supposed to pull your pants down when you get TO the bathroom, not on the way THERE!

3. Straws go in your mouth, not your nose.

4. Please don’t lick my hair.

5. I’m sorry, we don’t eat ice cream for breakfast.

6. Wipe, flush, dress, wash.

7. Did you remember to flush?

8. If you wear your underpants backwards you’ll get a wedgie. Yep, wedgies aren’t much fun, are they?

9. Really? A huge spider with your bare hands?! No thanks, I wouldn’t care to hold it.

10. Ahh! Don’t drink the nasty pond water!

11. It’s called a hitch, not a “hooker.” Especially when you loudly request Dad to draw one during a silent moment at church. A HITCH.

12. Please use a tissue.

13. Peas go in your mouth, not your nose.

14. Sucking on your toe was cute when you were 3 months old. It lost it’s cuteness long ago.

15. You can pick your friends, you can pick your boogers (though I’d really prefer you didn’t), but you just can’t pick your friend’s (or your baby brother’s) boogers. It’s gross.

16. Singing “Old MacDonald” at the top of your lungs while you use the bathroom is totally fine at home. But maybe hold off when we’re in the Target restroom with a dozen other people. Or at least whisper it.

17. Sure, it works to play the recorder with your nose. But it’s kinda gross and I’d really rather you don’t try. Especially when you have a stuffy nose. IMG_3187image
I have high hopes that my boys will grow up to be gentlemen. That they say please, thank you, are kind, considerate, conscientious, patient, smart, and healthy. And that they don’t eat their boogers or worms, use utensils the correct way with the correct body parts, and learn the correct vocabulary lest they embarrass themselves. And/or their parents. Is that too much to ask? Maybe. We shall see!IMG_1937 What common sense life lessons do you catch yourself reminding your kids of in hopes they’ll figure it out sooner rather than later?

Categories: Life Lessons, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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