Saturday, July 19, 2014
Yesterday, I decided to change the name and place of my "mom" blog. I've moved to www.ThisMomGrowsUp.blogspot.com.
Take a peek and let me know what you think!
I am leaving all of the existing posts here, but not adding to them. Some of the posts on the new blog will still link back here since I don't have the time to change them.
For now, I will also still use the ComeWearyMoms subscription e-mail list.
Thanks - and I'll see you over at This Mom Grows Up!
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Saturday, June 21, 2014
But then there is this family, this home, this quiet life that I treasure. As they also say, “The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.” My kids aren’t babies anymore, but they still need me. I still need to restore more calm and order to our chaotic little world. I still need to delight in the joys of the simple life. I will take the quiet in my own land.
Monday, June 9, 2014
“The difference between efficiency and effectiveness is that efficiency is doing things the right way, and effectiveness is doing the right thing.”
- Organizing a Little at a Time ~ My Desk and Bedside Table
- One Day: A Little Beauty and Order in My Home
- Busy & Creative at Home (with links to organization blogs)
- Decorating and Organizing Bathroom Areas on a Budget
- Kitchen Organization Ideas from a Mom of 10
- Impulsive Decorator's Room Redo: Front Hallway
- Turning Angst into a Clean Closet
- Organizing and Laundering Your Linens
- A Place for Everything
- Household Organization: Clutter, Clothes Storage and Chores
- Mt. Washmore (Laundry for a Large Family)
- "The Blue Bowl" and Thoughts on Making a Home
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Since I worked part-time as a teacher this past year, I put off a lot of organizing projects until school let out two weeks ago. I have been listing them all on an iPod app as I think of them, and I try to knock them off one by one, little by little. Each day I think, "What am I up to doing today?" It depends on my available time, which area of the house is bugging me most, and other factors.
The past few days, I've kept coming back to my bedroom to work. I may not be able to totally control what happens in the other rooms of the house, but I can at least take full responsibility for my own!
Yesterday, I spent the most time at my desk. Until recently, I had a metal and laminate computer desk, but it was getting more wobbly by the day. In fact, when we moved it out of the bedroom, it split into two pieces! Yikes! Last month, I found my current sturdy wood desk (pictured above) at an estate sale for $5. I replaced the hinged handles (which were on three drawers) with much nicer knobs that I salvaged from an old dresser. I filled the desk drawers with some of my office supplies and papers when I got it, but I continually add more and rearrange as I go along.
It is simply amazing to have a bunch of desk drawers. I'm not sure how I ever got by without them. I labeled two of them "Supplies" and "Paper" and told my family that those are the only two drawers they may open if they really need something. (We have the some kind of supplies and paper in the dining room, too.) The rest of the drawers are just for me -- for my hanging files and such -- because my desk is my own private area to work. In a busy household with several kids still at home, I need a quiet place where I can close the door to work, as well as a safe place for my lap top.
At the same estate sale, I bought this wicker drawer unit to hold charging cords, receipts, snacks, and other small items. I store extra books on top, so I had to move my bulletin board up and over to make room.
Two days ago, I decided to tackle the piles of miscellaneous store receipts that had been plaguing me. I'm trying to get a system for dealing with them. I folded several pieces of card stock in half to make small file folders to store receipts for purchases from different bank accounts, tax deductible expenses, items which might need to be returned, and warranty information. My plan is to empty receipts from my wallet into the folders every day or two. When it is time to itemize them for our records, I will take a folder, tally up the budget categories, and then throw away any receipt I don't need for product returns or tax purposes. Think it will work? I hope so!
I taped my Mary Engelbreit greeting card collection on the outside of the cabinet. This one says, "Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% what you do with what happens to you." I decided to use some of the blank space to write in some of my priorities: Jesus, family time, home making, creativity, planning, friendship, inspiration, learning, writing, teaching, rest, service, exercise, focus, nutrition, and peacemaking. Just a reminder when I'm tempted to fritter away time with mindless web surfing!
Two last pictures! I bought this "Dare To" butterfly poster at Michael's craft store before Christmas and hung it with inexpensive poster hanging rods that slip onto the top and bottom edges. This was much cheaper and faster than framing. I like to be inspired and motivated, and you probably already know I am a word person from morning until night!
R is for Reinvent Yourself. I've had to do that a lot in recent years with so many life transitions. Overcome Adversity, too! There is always a bit of Fail, and Dare to Suceed. Most of all, Love All You Can.
I'm glad my bedroom is becoming a place for rest, reflection, and renewed responsibility along the journey.
What have you done to make your bedroom special?
You can find two other posts related to my bedroom here:
- A Desk for Mom
- A Space of My Own
- Sacramental (Big Words)
- One Day: A Little Beauty and Order in My Home
- Decorating and Organizing Bathroom Areas on a Budget
Saturday, May 10, 2014
Thee will I sing, for sing I must,
Amy Carmichael was a missionary to India in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Her main ministry was rescuing children from immoral duties in the Hindu temples, and then raising them in the Christian faith at Dohnavur Fellowship. The children often sang songs of praise to God throughout the day; this was a key part of their upbringing! Amy did not have an easy life. After a painful injury, she spent her latter decades as an invalid. These experiences enabled her to write straight from the heart of God to comfort those who faced trials and difficulties, and to challenge them to rise up to the call of God on their lives no matter what.
- Still Life Magnolias
- Little Gem's First Bloom and the Day of Small Things
- “A Parent’s Prayer” by Amy Carmichael
- Melody, My Bud of Joy (with a poem by Amy Carmichael)
- The Password of Praise
- Mommy, Can I Help You?
- Simple Shoes
- Melody and Bab
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Friday, April 11, 2014
My day "off" started off not with a bang, but my teenager's gentle voice around 6:30 in the morning: "Mom, I missed the bus. I tried to let you sleep as late as I could, but I need a ride to school." Huh? What? Oh. Up I go. Change into day clothes, keys in hand, we can do this. Let's enjoy the beautiful sunrise and a little time spent with a very sweet son. I'm a mom of 10 with seven still living at home, so one-on-one time is precious.
I got home in time to make sure my youngest daughter's hair was combed and that my youngest son was out of bed. Keys in hand, off to the elementary school several blocks away. Then home again in time to eat some breakfast and take another daughter and a neighbor to their middle school bus top several blocks away. Done yet with driving? I thought so...
But no. Within minutes, I got a text from my daughter that she had left the Cheetos for a class party in the van. Could I bring them to school for her at lunch time? Sure, why not. Not so far away, eh?
And then, and then, I got a call from one of my adult daughters asking for a "big favor, Mom." Could I bring the set of her paint brushes she had left on her bed? As soon as possible, please? I had to laugh. Yep, got it. I took a shower, threw some laundry in the washer, printed out my To Do list for the next few days. Keys in hand, off to the college to bring my amazing artist her tools. (I can't wait to go see the college's juried art show opening night next week. She had six pieces accepted for display, out of the 60 total. Did I say she is an amazing artist?)
On the way back from from the college, I decided to take advantage of being in that end of town and stopped by an antique store I spotted. The owner was just unlocking the door, a half hour past the regular opening time. Chatting with her in the store, I discovered her morning had been much like mine, running around town taking care of stuff for her adult son's family since he was sick. We both smiled and agreed: "We do for family." Yes we do.
It's been a day. A good day. A Mom day. But now, my keys are in my purse!
Oh yes, those books! Here is such a relevant snippet from one of them, starting on the very first page.
"And it's not uncommon to find ourselves wondering, How does this whole crazy puzzle fit together? Anne Morrow Lindbergh observed somewhere in her timeless little book, Gift from the Sea, that most of us don't really mind pouring our lives out for a reason. What we do resent is the feeling that it is being dribbled away in small, meaningless drips for no good reason." For me, one of the greatest frustrations of walking through the "dailiness" of my life is that I don't always get to see how the bits and pieces of who I am fit into the big picture of God's plan. It's tempting to see my life as a meal here, a meeting there, a carpool, a phone call, a sack of groceries -- all disjointed fragments of nothing in particular. Yet I know I am called, as God's child, to believe that they do add up. That in some way every scrap of my life, every step and every struggle, is in the process of being fitted together into God's huge and perfect pattern for good (Romans 8:28). As difficult as that is to "live into" daily, it had become for me a transforming truth, adding meaning to the mundane and purpose to the plodding." (Kaleidscope: God's Pattern in the Bits & Pieces of a Woman's Life by Claire Cloninger)(I picked up the book because the concept of the kaleidoscope is one I've been pondering lately. You can see more here: Kaleidoscope.)
Grace and peace,
Thursday, February 20, 2014
In a mental fog? Feeling sluggish or forgetful or distracted? I’ve been there, too! Our brains are amazing, complicated organs, affected by so many factors. I’ve been working on various areas of brain boosting over the past few years and thinking lately about how to increase my mental accuity and focus even more.
I've been planning to write this post for a while, but my memory was jogged this morning by these electronic sign messages outside my son's high school about preparing for the upcoming standardized writing tests.
Great reminder, but it's not just for students preparing for tests! We all need to remember to care for our brains!
- How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci: Seven Steps to Genius Every Day by Michael J. Gelb: This book takes a long look at how da Vinci approached life and learning, incorporating curiosity, learning through experience/persistence, cultivating sensory attention, embracing ambiguity, balancing between the arts and sciences, nurturing the physical body, and an appreciating interconnectedness.
- No More Brain Drain: Proven Ways to Maintain Your Mind and Memories by Readers Digest: Based on more than 100 scientific studies, this easy-to-read, visually pleasing book is full of practical and innovative ideas for boosting your mental edge – foods, exercises, mental games, sleep tips, etc. Please note that there are other books with similar titles. Maybe they're good, too!
Aim for eight hours of nightly sleep in a cool, dark, quiet room. The ideal hours are before midnight!
Oh, and don't forget to drink plenty of clean water! A body that is not properly hydrated can feel sluggish and tired! How much water? Take your weight in pounds. Divide that in half. Drink that many ounces per day. That's a lot of water, but your body needs it for so many reasons!
Exercise - especially aerobic - gets your blood and oxygen flowing to the brain, and improves mood and general stamina. It also increases physical awareness, such as hand-eye coordination, that is crucial to strengthening your mental muscles. It helps posture and flexibility, and, done correctly, can alleviate pain. It releases calming hormones like serotonin and dopamine, reducing stress. All of these will help you think better, too.
Can't afford a gym membership or just can't get out much? Lace on your sneakers and take a brisk walk in your own neighborhood! Walk with a friend for extra motivation. Or buy yourself an exercise DVD to use in your own home! I just bought the "Keeping Fit in Your 50's" DVD set at Sam's Club, but I need to go to the chiropractor before I start using it!