New Year, New Ideas?

 

 

Don't give upGreetings,

First I want to say thank you to Jen who has been carrying the load lately. I have been  lucky enough to travel to Georgia twice this month, so I’ve been very busy!

I had planned on this post for the beginning of January…but since I was so busy I’ve decided January was a practice month and I’m going to make February 1 be my new year!!

This year I want to be more organized, more in tune with myself, and bring a little deeper meaning to my life. I want to set goals for the year. Things I want to accomplish. This is an assignment I gave to all of my clients the first part of January, so I decided I had better get to practicing what I preach!

Some of the goals I’ve set is to spend more time in the bible and daily devotions. Get SOME kind of regular exercise into my life. Be more productive with my time. I said the other day it seems I’m either working or tired, and frankly….I’m kind of “tired” of that. So I need to spend some time with that. A couple of years ago I came up with a word that I wanted to focus on for the year. Truthfully, I don’t remember what it was now, but rather than one word for the whole year, I think I will just work on one word a month. I’ve chosen my first word  to be “mindfulness.” I think if I’m more mindful, it may straighten out some of the other stuff.

The other tool I think I need to start using….something my sister has done forever….and I have made fun of forever…is  lists. I found a really good list pad at Barnes and Noble last night so I’m hoping that will help. Of course, again I will be honest with you and admit that I am a gadget person and my house is full of all of these “tools” that I’m always sure will help me laying in all corners of my house! Maybe my first task should be to gather them all up and use them!

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I guess the message I’ve trying to convey here, that we always have to keep trying. You can make a plan, set a goal, and create lists…..but sometimes life interrupts and things don’t get done. What I’m really working hard on, is not letting one incident derail me from the whole project. One interruption doesn’t mean the whole idea needs to be scrapped. This definitely applies to weight loss too. (Another of my goals to accomplish this year!!). I need to stop getting in my own way. Do any of you struggle with these issues? It’s hard, isn’t it. I have faith though if we never give up, eventually we will all meet those challenges and goals.

It isn’t always easy, is it. But perseverance is the word! Hey, maybe that can be next months word!

One final word on this….after everything I have written…I do have one motto….if it comes to choosing fun or choosing house projects…FUN will always win. Even if it puts me behind! Fun feeds my existence! I hope you ALL take time to put fun in your life!

Take care, stay warm, and thanks for listening to my rambling!

Julie

Finding Contentment

“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.  I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.  I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”         Philippians 4:11-13

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Recently, Jules sent me this picture with the message, “Don’t you wish you were me!”  I have to admit, I was a little envious when I saw this picture because this has been my view for much of the summer:

IMG_2607     I have spent a lot of time driving the girls to various activities and commitments this summer.  We are fairly conservative about the amount of activities they are involved in, but multiply the trips by two girls and it can add up(I feel for those of you with large families!).  I have been known to grumble about all of this driving from time to time, but I started thinking more about it and realized that although it may not always be the preferred way to spend my day, it is the season of life I am in right now.  I want to try to step back and be more thankful, and as the verse above states, find contentment no matter the circumstances.   Thankfully, I have not had to do without food or shelter, but sometimes I find myself  struggling to find contentment in the daily responsibilities that frankly are not the same as floating down a peaceful river in a kayak!

     These trips in the van may not be as serene as the kayak adventure, but I can find contentment in them.  I think it is all in how I look at things. If I focus on the positive, I think I will find more contentment.  As many wise people who have gone before me on this parenting road say,” These years go by too quickly, enjoy every minute!”

     While we are in the car, I am able to sneak in conversations with oldest daughter, who has to listen because she is trapped!  Some of our most interesting conversations happen in the car.  Little one also enjoys chatting up a storm, knowing I am available to listen. I am even able to make our little pup’s day when I let him enjoy the thrill of a car ride with the family!  I am thankful I have two healthy girls who find joy in extra-curricular activities and I am thankful we are able to provide them with these opportunities.  I know these times with the girls are fleeting and I am determined to make the most of them.  I have also discovered our local library has a great collection of books on CD that I listen to while driving around town.  I have read more books in five minute increments than I ever thought was possible!   It is even more relaxing when I include a hot cup of tea for the road!

     The last part of the this verse states, “…I can do all things through him who gives me strength.”  The challenges I am talking about in this post do not even come close to some of the hard times I have faced in the past or many of you are facing currently.  I think it is important to remember that no matter what circumstances you find yourself in right now, happy or challenging, you can do all things through our gracious Lord who will give you strength!

How about you?  Do you struggle to find contentment?  I would love to hear from you and how you deal with this in your daily life.

Blessings,

~Jen