Embracing the Noise

I know I have been largely absent from this space. And friends, one day I hope to have the words to share where I’ve been these last few months. 

But for now, I’m moving forward. We’ve been homeschooling, and it say it’s going well would be an understatement. The kids are flourishing, enjoying learning. Our family is growing together and yet each member is learning independence, who they are. It has been beautiful to watch and an honor to be a part of.


But it has also led me away from any quiet I used to have. Even quiet amidst the noise. 

And instead of embracing this new non-quiet, I have been trying to hide away.  Trying to steal moments for myself. 

And while it is certainly necessary to find time for rest – I lost sight of what I am doing. I lost sight of these little ones I am guiding and raising up. 

And I was losing my joy. 

You see, I had forgotten that my joy was not connected to quiet. I have forgotten that my joy was not connected to my plans. Because my joy only comes from the Lord. 

In seeing Him in the very places He calls me. Even when that is a home filled with noise. In serving Him by loving the ones He places before me. Even if they are screaming and unwilling. In walking the path He leads me on. 

And so today, I am choosing to move back to the noisy bar stools of my kitchen counter. To rest. To think. To read the Word.

Because all of this is where I am called to be. And hiding from it will never grow them or myself. 

For who am I to say no to such generous blessing? 

Where do you find yourself today? Are you, like me, trying to run from the noise and the stress…but to no avail? Can I encourage you to embrace the noise. To remember that this is certainly a beautiful thing. One to be thankful for. Even in the midst of those ever trying days. 

The Ugly Motherhood Moment

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege to attend Hope Spoken. If you’ve never heard of this women’s conference, you should check it out. 

It was a beautiful time away. A time of quiet. A time of rest. A time of community. A time of worship. A time that left me feeling refreshed. 

  

And so you can imagine my shock when I stepped foot back into my house. My home filled with the ones I love. Filled with love. And need. Constant need. 

Gone were the quiet, peace-filled days. Gone was the endless food, prepared by other hands. Gone was the incredible fellowship. 

And it was replaced by boogers. (Literally. I’m not calling my kids boogers. Though it may or may not be true.) It was replaced with shouts. And screams, let’s be real. It was replaced by exhaustion. It was replaced by rough mornings. Tough moments. Tears. It was replaced with strain. 

I thought the weekend of rest would prepare me for re-entering real life. The #Momlife. 

But instead. Instead it was ugly. Instead I was ugly. 

Ingratitude reared its ugly head. And if I’m honest, it stuck around for longer than I’d care to admit. 

As the days continued, thanklessness followed. So I pushed into my daily practice of gratitude. I served my family. I cleaned, organized, shuttled. Though my heart struggled to catch up to my actions. 

And it’s taken those small moments to urge me back to gratitude. The moments of sweet smiles and messy kisses. The moments of toothy (and toothless) grins. The whispers of love as the lights are turned out. 

Well, it’s taken those small moments and wise friends. Friends that remind me of truth, of who I am. Friends that remind me why I chose motherhood. And friends that remind me that the struggle, the mess, and even the ugly are normal. Friends that point me back to the Word: “But He said to me, ‘ My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, than I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10) 

Though it was a struggle for a few weeks, I am thankful for it. It was a reminder to walk with Him in gratitude. An example of how to come back to the richness of His grace. 

And a great reason to plan a trip back to sunshine-y Texas ASAP. ūüėČ 

Have you had an ‘ugly mom’ moment, day, or week? How did you escape it? 

Seeking Wisdom

“Give me wisdom and knowledge to go out and come in before this people,
for who can govern this people of Yours, which is so grand?” 

Oh to walk into this great task, this grand adventure of parenting and to ask for wisdom and knowledge is jaw dropping. Okay, so technically this quote was from King Solomon (2 Chronicles 1:10). And he wasn’t speaking of his children or of parenting, but rather of leading a nation. But there are some things that are true to both parenting and leading a nation. Right? I mean, really, they are both leading a group of people, a sometimes unwilling group of people. A group of people that you don’t always understand. They both require much of you and they both place much responsibility on you.

To ask for wisdom at the start of leading parenting makes me pause. I think back to my first pregnancy. My first little one. That moment the nurses handed me my baby. The first time I saw him on an ultrasound. The first time I looked into his beautiful eyes. The moment I saw “PREGNANT” come across the pregnancy test. The moment I looked on his perfect face. I think about and remember the prayers I prayed at each of these moments. I prayed for health. I prayed for his future. I prayed for my health during pregnancy and labor. I prayed for safety. I prayed for sleep. I prayed for and continue to pray for him. I pray for his day. I pray that he loves the Lord. I pray for patience (that one’s for me). I pray to understand boys. I pray that one day I won’t have to clean the bathroom daily. I pray for the right words for me and for him.

But I have never prayed for wisdom. 

Continue reading

How Great the Father’s Love for Us

Today finds me feeling cloudy. I stare out the window and the weather mirrors my feelings. Or perhaps, I mirror them. I cannot find the words to put with my thoughts. Or rather, I cannot seem to nail down my thoughts. They seem scattered. A mess.


Do you have those same days. The ones that begin with rain at the bus stop, continue on with children getting sick, and then by the time nap/quiet time roles around, you feel sick too. The ones that find your son walking home from the bus stop crying and frustrated. The ones where your heart just sits breaking and wondering, unsure of words or wisdom to share. (Not that I’m speaking specifically about my day today.)

Maybe that was a little specific, but you know the days I’m talking about. Sometimes nothing needs to happen for me to feel blank and cloudy. Other days it is compounded by the way life is thrown at you. And you are left to sit and wonder. Why am I a mess? Why is my life messy? What did I miss?

Why am I not enough? Why can’t I do it all?

And I am reminded, each and every time my mind wanders there: I don’t need to be enough. That in my weakness, I remind my children of the One who is enough. That in the times when the world seems unfair and rough, there is One who has conquered the world. And what glory that He lives in us!

Continue reading

Celebrating Motherhood {#WholeMama}

Celebrate. This is the last topic for the #WholeMama link up. This link-up has been a beautiful community of writers. It has also been a place that challenges each of us, thereby creating true and lasting growth. For all #WholeMama has been, I am sincerely thankful.

Motherhood

Oftentimes, I find myself mourning the end of a season, a friendship, or a community. I know and understand that there are times for things and a time for you to continue growing outside of the comfort that has been created. But I cannot help to look back and remember. Instead of celebrating as I remember, I mourn. 

Today I am choosing to celebrate with #WholeMama. I am choosing to remember and celebrate the growth I saw and the topics I thought upon. Today, I am choosing to celebrate {Whole Motherhood.}

Continue reading

Laughter, Mom, & Poop {#WholeMama}

POOP!

Yes, I just started this post by saying poop. Because I’m a (mostly) #boymom. And for some reason the mere sound of this word elicits undercover giggles and hearty chuckles from everyone in the room. Even me. And I’m supposed to be the sensible one in the group.

And I was. Really. I used to be the person that needed each knick-knack (though few) to be in the exact right spot. Not an inch off, exactly where I had them placed before someone so offensively knocked them an inch away. I used to be the person that didn’t allow poop jokes, or even the mention of poop. I was the mom that frowned and cringed when my children (and husband) made inappropriate sounds at the dinner table. I was the proper mom. 

But now, now, I am the one being reminded that we shouldn’t be saying “poop” at the dinner table. Now my children remind me that we can’t make certain jokes. Now I’m the mom who laughs with her children. 

Believe me, I still love rules and order, but I have also learned to smile, to laugh, and to be the teller of the “poop jokes.” Because I have learned that laughter is vitally important. It may not be the lifeblood of the family, but it is invaluable. Laughter is the fighter of the family. I know, that sounds counter-intuitive. Laughter as the warrior? But laughter is powerful, friends. Laughter has the power to break down walls, to unite hearts, and to carry joy. 

Continue reading

Seeing Small: Embracing the Ordinary Moments {#WholeMama}

We just got back from a quick road trip to New York. We were camping, visiting family, and experiencing the Adirondack Mountains. It was breathtakingly beautiful. And as I stood at the center of the vast forest, at the base of these towering mountains, at the shore of the seemingly endless lake I could not help but feel small. Beautifully small. I felt this same sort of relief when I was in Greece, walking along ancient stone walls as I hiked a monstrous gorge.

SMALL AS RELIEF

It almost doesn’t make sense. When I think of small, I usually want to run. I don’t want to be thought of as small, insignificant, or unimportant. I want to be making a difference in this world, in the lives of those I am around. I want to live life fully. How can I¬†do that if I am small?

Honestly friends, I think it’s easier than we think.

TIME FOR CHANGE: EMBRACE THE ORDINARY

We need to change the way we view small. Small is the everyday. Small can be found in those ordinary moments; you know, the ones we quickly and easily brush over. Small are the moments that don’t make it into a photo album or even onto our thankfulness lists. Small is: washing the dishes, cleaning the house, buying school supplies, making dinner, reading the Bible, snuggling, conversations with friends…and the list goes on. It is in those ordinary, everyday, small moments that life is lived. These small moments show love. The ordinary tasks dole out blessing.¬†The grand adventures and vacations are beautiful and will certainly be remembered. But those small moments are life shaping. The moments that run together have the power to change lives.¬†

Continue reading

June: Celebrating Grace

June has been a month of transitions. School ended. Summer began. Family trip to Florida. Potty training. Change upon change. Transition upon transition. And I know we still aren’t done.

Life is tricky like that. We get used to it. We accept the hard and the beautiful parts of our season. And then. Just like that, it changes. It alters before we even notice the last season is gone. Before we really get to celebrate it, it passes. So this month, we have been trying to celebrate. Each milestone. Each change. Each new word. Because we know. We know how easy it is to move on. To move on before we even realize it is happening. We know the kids get older and older and time won’t stop. We know that the summer will race past us, hopefully filled with adventures, and then it will be gone and we will be frantically purchasing school supplies and preparing for a new year.

unnamed

Continue reading

Intentional Quiet {#WholeMama}

Quiet. What an elusive idea. I find that our lives can be so full. So distracting. So loud. That we miss the quiet, though oftentimes we don’t even realize we are missing it. We miss the beauty in the simple. And we miss grace.

Thinking on quiet + motherhood + wholeness, I hit a roadblock. Honestly, I have another post ready and typed. But I just couldn’t publish it yet. Something is missing. Something isn’t right. So instead, today, you get this. These quiet thoughts. That are both real and vulnerable. Honest, and I hope they meet you right where you are. Searching for quiet. Searching for grace. Searching for truth.

IMG_3534

Today I began reading Genesis. I finished my journey through the Psalms and have decided to read through the Bible for the rest of this year. So today began where it all began, “In the beginning…”. I have read these verses time and time again. But today, today I noticed one verse that I had never really noticed before:

“The earth was without form and void and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.” (Genesis 1:2)

There is something about this verse, about these 2 simple sentences that stops me right where I’m at. They shout¬†loudly and whisper quietly at the same time. They speak straight to my soul. We were without form. Void. Empty. Darkness, sin, had come upon us. Entered into the beautiful. Darkness was over us. Around us. In us.¬†But. But that was not how we were left.¬†But God.¬†But God entered in. He saw us where we were. Empty. Lifeless. And He hovered over us. Preparing us for life. Preparing to speak life over us. Through us.¬†In us.¬†

As I sit and think on these words. I think about the quiet. The deep. The real. The beautiful. And of course, the grace. Always the grace.

I know that life is loud. I know that children are loud. I know that the things I surround myself with are loud. All vying for my attention. But when I enter into quiet. When I intentionally choose to still my heart. To sit quietly with my Lord. To read His words. I grow. I see that grace. I see His never ceasing, abounding love. And I feel quiet. I feel calm. I feel peace.

Continue reading

Power to Flourish {#WholeMama}

I sit here today. Blank. Devoid of thought. Struggling to¬†think on the word “Power.”

I don’t know if it is the current world events. The struggles that the people of this world are facing. In their communities and within their own hearts. The lines being drawn in the earth that we are tired. That.it.is.enough. That it is time to stand against the power of privilege. Time to stand against the power of hate. Time to stand for the marginalized. The forgotten. To stand firm. With power.

Black Canyons

I don’t know if it is potty training my Sweet Boy-Child. It is only day 1. And I have been peed on. And he has had 6 poop accidents. That might be too much information. But friends, if you only knew. And maybe you¬†do, maybe you’ve been there or find yourself there too. And if you haven’t, you are welcome to join in on this mess anytime.

So today. Tonight. I sit. And I am just here. A little raw. A little tired. And in need of some power.

And when I think of that word, power, in regards to this thing called motherhood, I think of the power it takes to be a mom. To mother, and to mother {mostly} well. The power it takes to fight for your littles when they cannot fight for themselves. That power that recognizes when something isn’t right and fights for it. Even when that means you are not understood. Even when that means you are marginalized. You fight.¬†The power to endure screaming, not sleeping, not eating well, never being alone, never having silence, and I could go on and on and… The power to do it all. The power to be it all. To be everything for everyone. To do everything for everyone.

Continue reading