Monday, September 21, 2009

I'm Surrounded

I stepped outside and felt the warmth of the sun as it swept across my face. I wandered to the end of the driveway, opened the wooden box and pulled out a pile of mail. Thumbing through it I looked for desirable material. Once again, I was greeted with Cabela's, Riflemen, and Bass Pro Shop magazines that never stop coming. Oh look, here's something addressed to me from the NRA. I don't remember joining the NRA.

As I re-enter my abode I place the stack atop the growing pile on the kitchen counter. I have been forbidden to throw them away.

From the kitchen I step into the family room where I stumble upon colorful piles of lego's, which had been abandoned, but am assured by the screams that echoed from above the culprit is not far away.

Walking up the stairs my eyes fall upon, a bionicle arm, a hot wheel car, and something that appears to have once been a transformer.

These subtle reminders of the male population that inhabits these walls are as unfailing as the assurance that the sun will set in the west. And yet, I remain a sane, content, and a mostly cheerful, wife and mother.

I have four males that have taken over my home. A home which I strive to keep as feminine as I can under the circumstances. Here are some ways I have subconsciously attempted to keep the masculine influence in my life at arms length.

1. I collect fine china

2. I love fresh flowers in the house

3. I read Jane Austen novels

4. I own a collie

5. I love tea parties

6. I have Sandra Kuck pictures hanging in my bedroom

7. I wear mostly feminine looking clothing

8. I light candles

9. I have had magazine subscriptions to, Martha Stewart Living, Victoria, and Better Homes and Gardens.

10. I married a man who hunts, races RC cars, tinkers in the basement with RC cars for hours, and participates in competitive shooting

Oh wait, that last one doesn't count does it?

It is remarkable how God made male and female so different, and yet, they can be so compatible. We compliment each other and show forth the diversity of our Maker.

So despite the fact that I don't always UNDERSTAND the male population of my home I do TRY to appreciate our differences.

...and PLEASE, don't forget to put the seat down!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Creating Memories

Today was a first for us. We drove to a nearby farm and picked our own vegetables. True, I could have purchased that same produce from my local grocery store but... a memory was made.

Childhood is such a rich time. Filled with lessons to learn, games to play, and memories to make. Most of us have a favorite memory from our childhood. A family vacation, a lemonade stand, drinking cocoa beside a fireplace while a blizzard raged outdoors. Doesn't just reading about those things make you smile? Well, maybe I'm just sentimental.

A friend recently told me about taking her young children to Disney World for the first time. As adults, maybe that doesn't sound as enjoyable as it once would have been. But here is the way she looked at it. She kept her focus on her children. Studying their faces as they light up, and the eagerness in their eyes. It moved her to tears.

"It was magical!" she said.

Today, as we waded through fields rich with growth, my sandals allowing a full helping of dirt between my toes, I just took it all in. The joy on the faces of my children as they beheld the miracle of produce that had sprung up from the ground. We were making a memory. Which I believe my children will not soon forget.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Road Less Traveled By

As I walk on this journey called "life" I am met with many things. Sharp turns, obstacles that block my way, some great and some small. But inevitably the path divides in front of me.

Which path do I take?

When I take the path that looks easy, I may enjoy it for a while. Little sweat is involved, no hills to climb or hurdles to jump over, all seems fine. But when the journey is over, fewer calories were burnt, no muscle developed, and no lessons learned on the way.

When I take the narrower harder path, I sweat, I climb, and I hurdle. And when it's over, I am stronger, wiser, leaner and more physically fit.

Hmmm, sounds just like life decisions. Do what's easy. Don't deal with that negative attitude I see in my child. Leave that project that needs attention for another day. Organizing that closet can wait until next week, next month, next year.

I am preaching to myself. I will admit it, I pro... pro... procrastinate. Did I really just admit that? I did, it's now out there. Bottom line, I need to WRITE things out for each day. Goals, dreams, things that need to get done.

We moved into our present home a little over a year ago. Boxes are unpacked, things are put away, and pictures are on the walls. But... There was one major thing I procrastinated, the master bedroom walk-in closet. I knew I wanted it perfectly organized and it was going to take a lot of TIME and WORK. So what did I do? I closed the door for a year. I HATE clutter. I literally feel like I can't function, or enjoy anything fully until the clutter is gone. So I just shut the door.

Then company was coming. They would stay in that room, I knew I had to clean it. It took me over an hour but, I sweat, labored, and organized. With results I could hardly believe, I actually enjoy being in there, and I can find the things I need! Why did I wait a year to enjoy my walk-in closet? Now I open the door and I feel such relief and pleasure.

I have learned a lesson from a closet. Take that narrower road that may not show on the surface as the most appealing. In the words of Robert Frost, "take the road less traveled by" and ENJOY the fruits of your labor!

...wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only few find it.
Matthew 7:13