Thursday, November 19, 2009

A list for my friends

Things I like:
  • Popcorn made the old fashioned way, on the stove. Topped with parmesan cheese and salt.
  • My new reading corner where kids flock to me
  • Pajama pants and comfy socks
  • Booking plane tickets to go somewhere fun
  • Other people booking plane tickets to come see me.
  • SweetTarts: only yellow, purple, and orange. I throw away the green and blue. Sometimes I eat the pink, but not often. Mostly those get thrown away too.
  • Dad's homemade spaghetti sauce
  • My laptop
  • Quiet moments with my daughter
  • Looking at the lake from my living room window
  • My job
  • God's Word
  • The number 7 and the letter M
  • Watching penguins at the zoo. Just pull up a chair, I'm entertained for hours.

Things I'm planning:

  • To drink more water tomorrow
  • Buy a car this weekend--Z says it should be white. We'll see.
  • Get family pictures taken that the stitches are out.
  • Have a cup of hot chocolate with mini marshmallows
  • Read my Bible more this week
  • Eating SweetTarts. Yellow and purple only.
  • Pay the bills, so they don't kick me out of my house.
  • Go back to college.
  • Love more. Laugh more. Sleep more.

Things you do:

  • Make me laugh
  • Keep me going
  • Put up with my crap
  • Inspire me to be more
  • Inspire me to do less
  • Challenge me
  • Help me finish off that last bit of ice cream. Because someone has to.....
  • Laugh at my stupid jokes
  • Laugh at my funny jokes
  • Love me

Thank are faithful friends.

Monday, November 9, 2009

You can't have it all. But you can have some of it, all the way.

In my 14 free minutes every day, I've been doing some thinking. And I just want to get it all out on "paper." One of the things I love to do is to make lists--not only does it give me a concrete way to accomplish things, but it gets all the "stuff" that's swimming around in my head a place to land. And frees up my mind for other more important thinking about what I'm going to eat next.

Anyway, I'm remembering what my life as a "working a full time job" mom used to be like when Zachary was little and I had a stressful job. Trying to be the best employee I can be, giving my job my all while I'm there, while still being the best Christian, the best wife, the best mom, the best homemaker, the best friend I can be. All at the same time. I remember I was always successful in certain areas at a time--never all at once. I used to feel really upset that I couldn't be "the perfect woman" who can juggle a 50-hr-a-wk job with all the demands of a family and home. Now I'm just sad that I can't, but I'm trying to give my all in whatever role is mine for the hour.

I really love my job, which makes the 7:30-5:30 hours of my day go by very quickly and enjoyably--for the most part. We all have our days. But in the past 2 years I've spent being "only" a wife, mother, homemaker, friend, I've forgotten what it was like when you had no free time. When you have to take personal or vacation time just to go to the chiropractor. Or figure out how you're going to get your hair cut without losing any work time. When your spare minutes at home are spent wishing your kids would give you 5 minutes of alone time....and then missing them intently after they've been in bed for 30 minutes.

I don't think that I can ever be that "balanced" woman that everyone talks about. Who is the perfect everything? I'm not even convinced that being balanced means you can do it all well like the world seems to believe. Maybe it means that you have to let some things go for the sake of other things. Tip the scales in favor of something important for things that are less so.

So my free 14 minutes a day this week are being spent pondering the things that are going to remain on my scales. Not everything's going to make the cut, that's for sure. Probably not everyone, either. I hate that with everything in me....I am a perfectionist. I want to do it well, I want to do it excellently, and I want to be the best. But I'm realizing that I need to "choose this day Whom I will serve," and that I, and only I, am responsible to make those choices. Others may not like it, but I don't answer to them.

Some things that are definitely staying (or being added because they are being forgotten!):

Rest & down time....
Bible reading & prayer times
Family time with no tv
Work, done well
Cuddling with my kids
Checking the mail. By myself.

Things you might not find me doing as often:

Phone calls
Cleaning (that's what my "house husband" is for now)
Cooking, except on the weekend
Cutting coupons and seeking "deals." A regular sale price without a coupon is still a deal if I get to save time.
Blogging, though I love it
Blog-reading, except for my friends

I would ask all my friends and family to be patient with me, but I think I'm past that point right now. I'm to the point that it just doesn't matter to me what other people think because all that matters is what He thinks. God's given me this job to do (literally and figuratively), and I plan to do it and do it well.

If I could learn to be content with hardly seeing my husband, dealing with a fussy newborn daughter and a rambunctious 2 yr old son, on a tight budget, in a 2 bedroom house....then I can learn to be content with a demanding job, a new lifestyle, and remembering what it's like to be married again. Is it the life I would have hand-picked for myself? Maybe not. But is it good?


"Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him. Fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing. The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing." - Psalm 34:8-10