How I’m Combating the Crazy

Part of me dreads the summer. School ends Friday, and while I’m happy for a break from that routine, I fear that the kids and I will drive one another crazy in the first week. So I’m taking a few steps to proactively combat the insanity.   First, we’re kicking off the summer with a week-long media fast. I know–it feels counter-intuitive. Screens are my easiest go-to babysitter. Even though it feels like I’m just asking for trouble by denying myself this outlet, it actually has the opposite effect on our family. When we started this year off with a solid week of being unplugged, I saw only benefits: more calm and focused silence for myself, more independent and creative […]

Different, by Sally Clarkson and Nathan Clarkson

This week’s #favoritething is the biggest gift I’ve received this year. A gift I purchased with my own spending money the moment I found out it existed. The book is called Different. All you sweet ones who are worried about your adhd, odd, ocd kids, autistic, Aspergers, physically disabled, too loud, too quiet, difficult or “different in some way” child, know that you are not alone. This book was Nathan’s idea. “Mom, we need to encourage others who feel out of the box or have an out of the box child so they can be encouraged by our story.” And so Nathan’s idea is now this book. –Sally Clarkson, from her blog post about Different Apart from my own mother, […]

A Life of Sacrifice?

I dream of living a life of great sacrifice. I dream of fulfilling my calling as a wife and mother in myriad heroic ways. But it never happens like I expect. I envision waking early and scurrying about in happy service from the holy overflow of quiet moments at Jesus’ feet. I imagine cooking and baking and delighting my family with fresh, warm treats. I dream up happy moments of play as I lay aside finished tasks (because I got up early to do them) to spend quality moments with my children. I think about delightful meals together with our entire family conversing around the table. In reality, however, I’m too exhausted most mornings to heft my body out of […]

Rough and Tumble

Rough and tumble—crash!—there goes My coffee cup. I sigh and know They won’t clean up the mess they’ve made. No, not without my guiding aid. I put the laundry down and breathe— I calm myself because I need To temper what I’m wont to yell. It’s simmering there; I feel it swell. I halt my steps a moment more Not to react as oft before. I pray for grace for me, for them. (How oft I need this little gem!) And then I head, quick, down the stairs To find six little eyes, three chairs And toys amuck across the floor All spilling from the pantry door Where hideouts burrow with the food. The eyes are searching momma’s mood. Drawing […]

I Wake

I startle at the shuffling of tiny feet across our bedroom floor. I blink through the heaviness to see the shape of our youngest son silhouetted against pale morning light. I heft my gaze to blazing numbers on the night stand. “Six twenty-two!” the clock defies. That’s exactly eight minutes before I wanted to get up. Just like yesterday, and the day before. I close my eyes for one lingering moment before focusing them again on our son. I see his tightly-fitting striped pajamas in black-and-white, though I know they’re blue and green. He stands patiently beside my bed, hugging his love-worn bear beneath his chin while sucking his thumb. He breaks the habit only to say, with all the […]

Parenting from the Flight Deck

Back when I was a flight instructor, I taught my students two different ways to fly: pilotage and dead reckoning. Pilotage is looking at the map and determining location based on landmarks. Dead reckoning is flying the plane using instruments (think compass headings, ground speeds, and math). Most private pilots use the two methods simultaneously in order to reach their destinations. The best way to make sure an airplane is on course is to set the compass heading, then look out into the horizon (10, 20, or 30 miles) for a point along the route like a tower or group of buildings to which you can fly directly. Once you have a focal point, you keep your eye on it […]

Intentionally Awesome Date Night: Expectations

Hello, friends! It’s time for our FREE Intentionally Awesome Date Night resource of the week! Today’s workbook is about expectations. We all have expectations that are logical and reasonable to us, born out of who we are, what we’ve experienced, and how we see the world. Expectations are human. When life doesn’t match our expectations, we’re left with frustration, disappointment, anger, and conflict. What if you could clear the air and get on the same page with your spouse so that your expectations are more in line with each other’s? What would that do for your marriage?   Find out. Click this button for your FREE pdf workbook!   Expectations Having done this exercise before, I expect you will be […]

Pulling My Own Wagon

–Originally published on FWB21 March 27, 2011– I’m currently reading Boundaries with Kids, by Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend. It’s chock full of really great stuff on child-rearing from a biblical perspective. I’ll spare you an endless string of great quotes and highlight one section that stood out to me in relation to my post “Log Extraction Is Painful” One of the hallmarks of maturity is taking responsibility for one’s own life, desires, and problems. … Mature adults see themselves as problem solvers instead of trying to find someone else to blame or to solve problems for them. p. 74 What does that have to with my previous post? Everything. “Maturity is taking responsibility… instead of trying to find […]