When My Child’s Behavior Spills All Over the Street

One thing my new schedule and the beautiful weather allows me the freedom to do is take a walk down the back-roads behind my house. I have a favorite journey down a winding trail, canopied over with tall, waving pine trees.

When I trekked along this morning, I noticed the road had been repaved. Before when I walked, water from an underground spring flowed all over the road, in some places pooling up into quite a puddle. Since I’m not a six year old boy, the puddles aren’t my favorite thing to stomp through.

They repaved the road, making the center significantly higher than the sides, which created a perfect, natural rut for the springing water to flow along. This left the middle of the road dry enough to walk down without raising up my pant legs.

I don’t know why my brain thinks like this, but this whole scenario reminded me of my strong willed child. The child that has tested every ounce of my will since the day he was born. The child who’s passion and behavior often spills all over the road – or the store, house, wherever he is.

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Triggers

Normally, I like to stay away from “How-To” books. They seem to stifle my creative nature, but also because, I long to follow a formula that looks nice and neat, tying life in a pretty bow. So, when the title promises me 5 Guaranteed Ways to Grow a Happy Family in 3 Easy Steps, it sounds appealing as I imagine my darling children all neatly dressed with ironed pants, smiling at me even when I tell them No.

Inwardly I want that book. I want to follow those 3 Easy Steps and obtain the advertised results. But I’ve tried to follow the 3 easy step philosophies and claim my overnight success as a parent and….failed.

I quickly thought about this glitch of mine when Wendy Speake Brunner asked me to read and share in the launch of her and Amber’s new book, Triggers.

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What Every Husband Needs to Know about Homeschooling

Dear homeschooling husbands,

(And by homeschooling husbands, I mean not necessarily that YOU homeschool the kids, but rather you are the husband to a homeschooling mom.)

I am convinced that motherhood is the hardest profession out there. I am also convinced homeschooling, as wonderful as it is, places second in degree of difficulty. So when you mix the two hardest jobs in the world together, every minute, every day, well there is just not a word that fits the job description or requirements.

You know how you feel when you first come home? You just left the cozy quiet of your truck or car, walked all by yourself to the front door and then WHAM! One kid grabs your leg, the other slams you with questions and the other is quietly taking the vacuum cleaner apart?

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Letting Go

My arms ached as my kids grabbed their bags and tumbled out of the car.

I didn’t give them one last hug, my mind alerted me in bold letters.

I resorted to hollering “I love you, through the crack in the car door before it had a chance to fully close.

The sweet, smiling lady I’ve seen every morning now grabbed their little hands and walked them to the cone just ahead of me. From there, she passed them to another lady who assured their safe arrival to the other side of the parking lot. But before they could walk across, the second lady grabbed both of my kids, gave them a big hug and kissed the top of their head.

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Warning! Underground Cable Wire

Last year held such change for our family. As we closed chapters and creaked open new ones, one thing that has remained for me, is this calling to write.

Now, I’ve always written, but I preferred the words to remain safe, tucked inside my nightstand drawer. Four years ago I was not even thinking about releasing them on the World Wide Web to be read publically. So this act of obedience has been hard at times. I have this fear of being misunderstood. The thought that someone could read in-between the lines of what I write and misunderstand my message, scares me every time I hit publish.

It’s been three years since I wrote my first blog post and towards the latter part of last year I began to feel this rumble inside me of something more percolating. Blogging became more than just a way to process and straighten the jumbled up slinky life often throws at me. That is always why I write, but I felt it growing from a hobby into a calling, a ministry to encourage and help others also struggling to sort out this of life.

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Build Yourself Strong

I don’t know that I had a word from the Lord last year, but my husband did. Diligence. It looked like a 5” scar on the side of his hand as a result of putting a new roof on our house. Diligence called us home from Kenya, to a new church body, to a long remodel project, and two of the biggest family decisions we’ve ever made. I’m ready for a new year and a new word!

As I moved books and games into their new space, I also wanted to spruce up the rest of the house. Naturally, I turned to the internet for inspiration on how to do that. I came across the Nester’s site and a video series she wrote called the Cozy Minimalist. Those words rang in my ear…

Now, I don’t want to a minimalist that lives in a tiny house and can fit all my belongings in a FedEx box. But I longed for less maintenance with a warm touch. So I wrote down the words, Cozy, Beautiful, Minimal and decided these would be my words for 2016.

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Change Out the Needle

Our family went to visit my parents in Arkansas for the Labor Day weekend. I expected it to be a time of rest as it often is thanks to my mom cooking and cleaning the dishes for me. And while I did rest from those duties, my mind didn’t.

So my first day back home I needed to do absolutely nothing. My body was tired. My mind was tired. I needed to hit the “reset” button, but couldn’t find it.

Before I left, Mom and I went to Hancock fabrics to look for a pattern that I could make something out of the fabric I purchased while in Kenya. I always make skirts thinking I’ll wear them and then never do. So I needed a pattern of something I will wear! I told my mom when we were checking out that I’m sure there will be a blog post about this afterwards. And I was right!

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This was going to be my project for the week off school. In my day to do nothing, I started a movie, started another one for the kids, and closed the door to my sewing room.

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My Space, My Place

I love finding hidden commonalities with new friends over the internet. I found one with my fellow blogger, Ashley Hales. We both signed up for the Clumsy Blogger course in hopes to not trip over inconspicuous power cords and such anymore in this world of blogging. I know it helped me and it put me in touch with Ashley and her site, Circling the Story. I say we have a commonality because we both like to share stories of others.  As Ashley said, “All our stories matter. Story begets story.”

Yes.

Today, she’s allowed me the privilege of sharing my story. My story of finding joy in the mundane tasks of cleaning house and feeding my family. It took me flying 9,000 miles away from home this summer to realize it, but I’m thankful for the lesson none-the-less.

Thanks Ashley for allowing me to share my story!

Here’s a glimpse, and be sure to view the whole story HERE.


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My Home Make-Over: Heart Addition

Sometimes motherhood wakes me up with smiles and kisses surrounding my face. Other days, I awaken and face tasks much too hard for this only child to tackle. This would be one of those days…

The day started with me desperately trying to talk myself out of driving  60 miles to get groceries at the nearest Costco. “Are the savings really worth my morning?” I pondered.

Doing some quick math confirmed, yes, they were.

To the utmost delight of my children, we slipped on our shoes and slid open the doors to pile in our minivan ready to conquer the aisles and bring home the bacon.

Actually, I’m pretty sure I had to remind each of my children that they weren’t alone in their “I don’t want to go” statements. I didn’t want to go either. But I do like to eat. And, I am always thankful on the back-end for a pantry stocked with supplies for dinner.

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Tired Arms, Strong Shepherd

As a mom, homeschooler, wife and stocker-of-the-pantry, the daily responsibility to lead well weighs heavy on my shoulders. When my kids are hungry, what do they do?

“Mom, I’m hungry.”

When breakfast is out of the way and tummies are full, the questions turn to the day’s schedule.

“What are we doing today, Mom?”

Of all the places and times I am looked upon to lead, direct, point out, initiate, start the ball rolling…to read the words “The Lord is my Shepherd” wash great comfort and relief over my tired arms. I didn’t realize how heavy the load was that I was carrying. And I didn’t realize I was trying to carry it all by myself.

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