I apologize to my readers here for my long absence. Life took over and my spring was full of great things but I just didn't have the energy or inspiration to blog on top of all of my part-time jobs and being a wife, mom, and teacher to my 4 active kids. I love encouraging others and was hoping this blog would be an outlet for that. This spring a lady at my church started an encouragement ministry where we get together weekly and pray together and send cards to people in our congregation so I feel that I am able to better use my gift of encouragement in that way rather than blogging random thoughts of encouragement into the unknown. As I took a few months off from blogging and considered whether it's just time to say goodbye to blogging for good or to re-examine whom I want to blog for, I came to the conclusion that I do have a lot to share, but for a very-targeted audience. My family doesn't read blogs, and most of my friends don't read blogs. I feel like it is pointless to use the blogging medium to keep in touch with family and update them on our kids and that there are far more-talented women out there on the web sharing homemaking tips and yummy recipes. Two areas that I do have much to share on at this stage of life are in the "simple living" category and the "Classical Conversations" category. I haven't seen anyone try to combine the two so I thought for a long time about starting a blog to encourage CC moms to keep things simple. Time will tell whether or not I'll be able to keep up with blogging there, but I'm trying my hand at it! If you've enjoyed this blog, during its' short duration, and are wondering what we are up to, feel free to check out:
Thursday, February 13, 2014
This was a great post. Valentine's Day isn't a fun day for many people, single or married, because it sheds light on our unfulfilled hopes.
The other day I was sorting through some old papers and writings and came across my journal from way back when. My age? Sixteen! It was so interesting to take a trip down memory lane and to see that I am very much the same person that I was back then. I was surprised at how little had actually changed, including my desire to process things through writing, my handwriting, and even my writing style. Reading over my New's Years Resolutions was striking...most of my goals back then are still my goals for growth even now! I guess that means I haven't made much progress, or will always wrestle with the same weaknesses!
In some ways I was inspired by my past self.
Teen Lindsey was less jaded than Thirty-Something Lindsey.
Teen Lindsey seemed to have more faith, more energy, more zeal for helping others than I do now as a tired mommy of many young children.
And yet...it's nice to now have several of the answers to Teen Lindsey's questions about life, love, and the future. In spite of my strong faith and confidence in the Lord, I struggled a lot with self-esteem and loneliness in following God. I definitely lacked the confidence and perspective that comes with experience and age.
I wish I could reach back in time and give Teen Lindsey a little shake and say, "Do you have any idea how precious you are and how irrelevant other highschoolers opinions are, and how much these hard choices now will bless your future life and marriage? Stay strong!"
Reading through my old journals, I saw longing, for love and acceptance...but in that ache for something more...I also found fulfillment in Christ.
There is longing in singleness and there is longing in marriage.
Being single is hard and being in a relationship is hard.
Our hearts are only truly fulfilled in the Lord.
We were made for more than romantic love.
Romantic love is just a signpost, pointing us to the One True Love that lasts throughout all of life and througout all of eternity.
Today, I'm letting the "consumed" girl of my yesterdays remind me where real love is found!
Monday, February 10, 2014
Monday, February 3, 2014
Playing Princess, complete with a little crown her sister made her out of pipe cleaners.
This last week I've discovered that:
I'm thankful Justus isn't a twin.
Having 4 kids is much easier than having 6.
Three little boys can make a LOT more noise and break a lot more toys than 2 can.
It is possible to cover our entire, enormous living room/schoolroom with paper scraps from little boys cutting paper.
We have enough legos to blanket the boys' whole bedroom carpet.
No matter how compliant or quiet a kid is, they still take emotional energy, meaning that people who say, "Having 3 kids is the same as having 2" or "Once you have 2 or 3, you can have a few more and never even notice!" are WRONG, WRONG, WRONG!
If I don't menu plan religiously and do some bulk cooking once a week, I cannot survive my kids' relentless appetites.
I don't like meat (of any kind) enough to do a high-protein, low-carb diet and eat meat 5 times a day.
I like chocolate waaaaay too much to cut it out of my diet.
It's worth spending the money to go to the chiropracter if you are miserable.
Laughing so hard you can't stand up with friends is my favorite way to burn calories.
No matter how much laundry I do, one of the kids will always complain about something clothing-related, like their socks feel too big, or too small, they can't find clean underwear, or they don't like any of the clean shirts in their bin.
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
John Piper has said, "Motherhood is more than suffering, but it is not less than it."
There are so many beautiful, wonderful things about being a mom.
Some days as a mom are truly as bright and as beautiful as this picture, taken at the Tetons this last summer.
But other days are just plain HARD! We who are called "Mooooom!" will suffer in many different ways.
For some it may be difficult pregnancies, intense nausea, a traumatic childbirth, lack of sleep, or post-partum depression. For others it will be in the form of a disobedient toddler, kids who don't sleep much, the death or rebellion of a child, a child's chronic illness or disability. Every mom will struggle with the enormity of the task and the fatigue that comes with caring for other human beings around the clock, without days off, for years and years on end.
The question isn't if we will suffer, but how we will suffer.
In the midst of the daily laying-down-of-my-own-needs-and-wants-for-others, we can become
either bitter or better.
We can allow the trials to grow us and make us strong, like trees in a strong wind that dig down deeper into the soil so they don't get blown over.
We can dig into the Word and draw from God's strength, or we can become angry, resentful, and bitter towards our kids.
In the suffering that comes with motherhood, this quote by Alexander Maclaren is a comfort to me, "Each of us may be sure that if God sends us over rocky paths, He will provide us with sturdy shoes."
Monday, January 27, 2014
If we don't acknowledge pain, strife, and imperfections, how can we relate to a hurting world?
There are some people whom I know but don't really know.
They always seem upbeat and positive and thankful.
They are fun to be around because they seem to always see the glass as half full.
They have a way of making others feel discontent, without even trying to because they never reveal a struggle, a need, or a wound.
Yet, the ones dearest to my heart are not these ones with shallow smiles
and lives of perfection on display.
The dear ones aren't afraid to tell me that they totally blew it and yelled at their kids or that they are struggling in their marriage, or feeling faithless, depressed, hopeless, or over-tired.
The ones close to my heart are the ones who know their humanity to the extent that they don't need to pretend that everything is always wonderful.
Because we all know that it isn't and won't be...until Heaven.
It has been said that friendship begins the minute someone says, "No way! You too?"
If you are looking for a true friend, a bosom buddy, a kindred spirit...someone who is truly going to rock your world, don't hide behind a perpetual smile or build a wall of pride and independence. Don't be afraid to cry sometimes, or rage, or let them see you in your pj's, with dirty dishes or a bad attitude. Ann Voskamp talks about how the walls we build to keep others out, (yes, even with a smiley, happy facade), become our prisons that isolate us. I know that well, having lived through a time in my life where I refused to open up and overcome shyness, only to have people think I was snubbing them in pride when I was really just afraid. True joy comes from being vulnerable, letting people know and love you just as you are.
Authenticity is where awesome begins.