Blog Archive

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

First tooth lost!!! Such a big boy!!

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas Season

Well it is so hard to believe but the Christmas season is here! It is knocking on the door, it is peeking around the corner. I can't believe 2011 is drawing to a close. The year has flown by.

I have read several different articles and blog posts about being present during this holiday season. I've felt lately that something is trying to drag me away from my family by pressing darkness around me. And I don't like it. So during this Christmas season I think I'll focus on the light to keep the darkness at bay. I'll focus on the light of the Christmas star, of the twinkling lights that remind me of Christmas' past, the light and warmth of our Lord and Savior.

I'll focus on the light from the candles lit during candlelight service at our church, the songs from my daughters lips as she sings songs she learned at school, the unexpected hug from my son, the laugh of my husband. Yes all these things surround me with the kind of light that can help me fight the darkness. But the one that shines the brightest is the one that comes from my Abba, my Father, my Lord.

Wishing you warmth and light this holiday season!!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Blessings

As I went around the house yesterday cleaning up toys and vacuuming and putting things up for what seemed like the 100th time, a thought occurred to me.

I am blessed to have toys to pick up because that means I have children that have made my life joyful. My heart aches for women who want children more than anything in the world, and are unable for whatever reason to have them.

I am blessed to have laundry to do because that means that my family has clothes to wear and keep us warm.

I am blessed to have floors to clean and shelves to dust because this means that I have a home to shelter me and keep our family safe from the elements and to build a haven for our family.

I am blessed to have dishes to clean because this means that my family has food to eat and gather around a table to talk about our day and laugh.

So Lord, help me to remember as I clean to not grumble about the dishes I have to do, the laundry that needs to be folded, or the sticky floors that need to be cleaned. Because you have blessed my family. But also help to remember when to not worry about cleaning, and having a picked up home when my husband or children need a compassionate ear, a loving touch, or to just sit and build memories.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Seven Years Ago Today

Seven years ago today I gave birth to my firsborn. This eight pound 1 oz baby boy came into this world amid some excitement. Not only did he feel stubborn and didn't want to come out, he also arrived during one of the worst thunderstorms of the year. Even though he was born in a very exciting way. He's the most laid back, easygoing, smartest, loving kid I've ever met. God blessed me with a wonderful son that I love very much. Today we had a very low key day. We got up and hung out at the house, and we had just family over to celebrate Mr. L's birthday. The first picture is of Mr. L at his class Friday when we took some snacks to celebrate his birthday. His teacher allows the kids to stand on their desks while the other kids sing happy birthday. I got to go and hand out the snacks, and take pictures while they sang. I'm so grateful my job allows me to be close to my kids. I'm so thankful for my handsome son, who brings me more joy than he'll ever know.
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Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Two of my favorite people in the whole world..

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Thursday, November 10, 2011


I want my attitude to be one of love for you. I want to wake up and see the world anew each day.I don't want to get down about the bad things I see in this world or the negative forces that try to pull me down. I want to be able to see each day for what it is..a gift from You.

A gift to open my eyes and see the beauty in the fall leaves changing colors.

A gift to hear my children giggling at a funny comment I made.

A gift to hear my husband work with our son on his homework. (Makes me LOVE him even MORE)

A gift to have a fire in the fireplace this chilly fall night.

A gift to have a job I love that I am constantly learning at.

A gift to spend a morning with the just the Lord, a cup of coffee, and a blanket.

There are too many gifts to name Lord, but I am so glad you provide them all for me.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

My Favorite Boy got glasses today. He looks so handsome!!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

In Response to How Are You Really???

This morning as I was reading a devotional, I had an insight. I was reading an article from (in)courage website that was entitled “How are You, Really?” and hit home. It was about a woman who asked her friend “How are you, really?” and the friend let it all go. As I sat there reading it, not only did I long to be able to be able to do that with someone as well as for someone. But then I started thinking about my life and wondering, How I doing, really? To be honest with myself, I’m overwhelmed and tired, and long for something to connect me to my life.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and kids I wouldn’t trade them for the world. But the only time I feel completely at peace is when I immerse myself in the Lord’s word. I strive to be so many things, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, an employee, a student…the list could go on from there.  But as I sit daily asking for God to make me better in those areas, I had a light bulb moment. Or maybe it was an angel knocking me in the head.

I don’t need to strive in these areas any longer. If I follow God and His word, His teachings, and listen to His will, then He will make me better in those areas.  We cannot do things by our own will, they have to come through God. 

Isaiah 41:10
“ So do not fear, for I am with you;
   do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
   I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Exodus 15:2
 “The LORD is my strength and my defense;
   he has become my salvation.
He is my God, and I will praise him,
   my father’s God, and I will exalt him.”

So from now on, instead of asking daily to make me better in the different areas of my life, I will ask the Lord to create me to be the woman that He wants me to be. As I grow into this woman, all these other aspects in my life will fall into place. By being with the Lord, and walking with Him, I will be better in these other facets of my life. There is no need for me to strive or agonize over how I feel I’m not measuring up. Only through the Lord, our God, can make me into the woman he has intended me to be. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Proverbs 31 Woman Was Onto Something..

I understand now why the Proverbs 31 woman rose early to prepare for the day and spend time with the Lord. I woke up early this morning and since the kids were already up, I took my Bible and coffee onto the front porch. I sat with my devotionals ad bible in the coolness of the morning. I heard the wind softly blow through the trees, the doves talk to each other, and  our kitties on the front porch purr in contentment. Very few cars were driving down our street so it was just nature and me.

As I sat there feeling close to the Lord and all that He created, several things pressed up my heart to pray for:

Lord, I ask that you make me fruitful today, to get done what needs to be done, to "roll up my sleeves, eager to get started" in the day. Yesterday was my day of rest, nap and all, so now today is time to get some things done. Lord I ask that you be with me through the week at work and at home to make choices that are in line with your Word.Lord I ask for your guidance and favor to be with my husband. Lead him Lord, and help him to grow into the man you have made him to be. Promote him as you see fit, Lord, for you have made us all to succeed.

Lord, I ask for your guidance in making our home a haven, a sanctuary, a place where we love to be. Lord, help me to learn to crave you, and not food or possessions or anything else but you. Yes, I completely understand why the Proverbs 31 rose early to prepare for her day. Because time alone with the Lord is the only way to strengthen you for the day.

Have a wonderful week!!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Awwww relaxation...

Even though I have homework due today and tomorrow that I am working on, I have to say this has been a relaxing weekend so far.  Last night my mom came over to watch the kids while Damon and I went to the country club to have pizza and drinks with some friends for a friend's birthday. We are such an old married couple, we were home before 9 but had a blast while we were there.

Then today we slept in, (well as much as you can with two kids saying Momma...Momma) and then I went to the grocery store and came home. Then I took a nap and now it's time to get back to homework. Tomorrow it's church, and that's all we have planned. This is the first weekend in months that we don't have SOMETHING planned to do and I have to say it's been pretty nice so far.

I think these weekends should be the rule, not the exception, and I know with the holidays coming up it's going to get harder not to have something going on every weekend. But I'd like to try to only have one thing scheduled during a weekend, or nothing at all to allow us as a family to decompress and relax instead of going...going...going. Like right now, the kids are playing in the backyard and I'm sitting inside with a purring kitten next to me. Life is going along pretty good right now.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Link to Women Living Well

I follow this blog and because she can say it more eloquently than I can about what I feel about blogging, I'm just going to link up to her Here's to glorifying God with Blogging...

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

An Awesome Mom

I receive this email in my inbox and thought I would share it with you..

You are an Awesome Mom
Colleen O'Grady
"I want you to know I am proud of you and you are an awesome mom."
Wouldn't it be great if someone told you that every day? How would you feel if you really believed it?
"You are an awesome mom!"
It feels good doesn't it?
I have listened to moms for over 20 years and I have never heard a mom say, "I am a great mom and I am really proud of myself."
I hear Moms say, "no one appreciates me or all I do for my family."
Your husband or kids may answer back, "Yes I do," but you don't believe them because they have no idea how much you do. And for sure they don't know what's in your heart, and how much you worry and pray for your kids.
But if a friend says, "You are a great mom," what do you do with that? Can you receive the compliment and believe it. Most mothers slough it off when it is given. You think, "She has no idea".
Why is that?
I don't think you appreciate yourself and all you do.
Deep down you think you're not doing a good job. Being a mother is hard. It's easy to doubt your decisions around parenting. And you have an unrealistic job description placed on you by the culture.
Mother's are supposed to be perfect. Right?
We are supposed to have perfect children, perfect house, perfect spouse, and have a perfect body.
Perfect is not happening! You can't be perfect in all these areas at the same time. Believe me we all try. You wear yourself out running here and there, morning to night and at the end of the day you are convinced you are the biggest loser. And not in the good (Biggest Losers TV show) way.
The message "A great mom is a perfect mom" you inherited from the culture. I call this a Powerless Parenting Message. Because when you believe this you feel powerless and are totally set up to feel like a failure.
You may have had a good day with your daughter, your house is clean, but if you've gained 2 pounds and your whole day is ruined.
This message robs you of ever celebrating what you do accomplish. Having a good day with your daughter and a partially clean house is worth celebrating.
Now this gets amplified if you have a hot headed adolescent daughter who is not getting her way. Your daughter is skilled with psychological weapons and knows how to shoot her arrow into your vulnerability.
She speaks out your worst fear. "You are a terrible mother."
This can knock the wind out of you. You feel like you're the witch in the wizard of oz. Your daughter has just thrown a bucket of water on you and all you can say is, "I'm melting".
Your power and confidence will melt when you believe her words. Combine this with wanting to be the perfect mother, and you will shrink and disappear into the black hole of Mother Shame.
The truth is you are usually doing your job when those comments fly at you. My guess is you just told your daughter, "No, you can't stay out till 2am." "No, you can't spend the night at your boyfriend's house." "No, you can't get a tattoo of your boyfriend's name on your chest."
You are doing a great job when you set a boundary with your daughter. Just know when your daughter says "You are a terrible mother," it really means "I am angry at you because you are not giving me what I want".
A Great Mom does not equal a perfect mom.
A Great Mom does not equal pleasing everyone at all times.
We need a new definition of a Great Mom.
1. Accepts her imperfections.
A Great Mom...
  • Knows the goal is not to be perfect.
  • Is kind to herself and therefore can be kind to others.
  • Is self aware and knows where she has crossed the line.
  • Admits her mistakes and says she is sorry.
  • Doesn't give up and wants to grow.
2. Strives to do her best.
  • Focuses on learning from her mistakes.
  • Wants to improve herself and her parenting.
  • Willing to change when things aren't working.
  • Is teachable and open to learning new approaches.
  • Keeps trying and starts again.
3. Knows her limitations and receives help.
  • Knows she needs to take care of herself which means getting enough physical and emotional rest.
  • Takes time to enjoy her life and her daughter.
  • Knows there is way too much and she needs help.
  • Receives help and builds a team of support around her and her daughter.
  • Leans on God and prayer for help.
4. Accepts her kids imperfections
  • Knows the goal for her kids is not perfection but healthy striving.
  • Has hope for her kids and encourages them.
  • Knows they can learn from their mistakes and take responsibility and develop empathy.
  • Shows her kids by example how to strive for the best and learn from your mistakes.
5. Remembers the important things
  • Loves her kids and remembers they are a gift.
  • Remembers it's not going to be perfect 24/7.
  • Aware of opportunities to hang out and enjoy her kids.
  • Teaches them compassion and forgiveness.
  • Sets boundaries and give consequences without shame.
  • Sees the God given potential in her children.
Believe this new definition.
You are an awesome mom!

Colleen O'Grady is a licensed marriage and family therapist, life coach, speaker, writer, and a mother of a teenage daughter. She specializes in helping moms of teenage daughters. Colleen rejects the message, "of just making it through the teenage years." She believes the teenage years can be the most gratifying and enjoyable years with your daughter. Yes there are challenges but when you understand how teenage girls are wired you can avoid countless hours of drama and needless suffering. Sign up for Colleen's FRE*E subscription to the Power Your Parenting E-zine to get practical tips and encouragement.
You can click here.