Thursday, March 27, 2008

Not Forgetting Emma

To keep current with writing my thoughts on the different things that are happening in our family, I want to write a little bit about our newest family member, Emma Elizabeth. Of course I went to Arizona early because we thought she would come early. Katie obeyed the requests of her doctor and stayed on bedrest, while I helped out with Ellie and the house work. The good thing about it all was I got to know Ellie very well. I hope she has not forgotten me since I left.

Katie came off bedrest and we started to go out more and enjoyed each other as mom and daughter. I was certain that Emma would come by the time that I changed my plane ticket which was 10 days later than my first return time. We waited and waited but as luck would have it, Katie's body was not ready to give birth yet. I had to leave and so I did. Two days after I came home, little Emma made her debut. I did not get to see her born or hold her in my arms or be a help to Ellie and Katie after the birth. I regret that very much. But, being with Ellie and Katie for the 7 weeks I was there was worth it all. We will see Emma when she comes in June and I look forward to that. Katie keeps us informed about Emma's progress and how Ellie is reacting to having a little sister. Now we have three new little babies in our family. Aiden, Andrew and Emma makes three.

The Journey is Worth Taking by Ro

I am posting this because it is much like me and perhaps some of you too.

I have the annoying habit of wanting everything to be over with right now.
When I am washing the dishes, I am anxious to get the job finished so that I can move onto the next thing on my list. When I take my shower, I am thinking about what I will do at work that day. When I am standing at my closet, I wish I was already dressed. When I am drying my hair, I get slightly bothered that it isn’t drying fast enough. When I am shopping for purses, I become anxious that I have not located the perfect one yet as I move from store to store.
I am constantly looking further on. I fail to see where I am. I rarely stop and sink into the moment with an, “Ahhhhhh… this is life!”
I am pushing, pushing, pushing ahead. Where is the end of the path? Is it over that hill? No? Perhaps, the next one then… Not there, either? Maybe it will be past that clump of trees.
Occasionally, it occurs to me to stop and look around me. The spirit calls, “See the beauty around you? Recognize the love that you have? Do you get it? You are already blessed. You don’t need to have more or go further to feel blessed.”
I love those moments of clarity. They are the moments of sheer joy that sparkle in the sun like cut class in a window. When I remember them, I hold each one close and I try to recreate the moment again.
And then, I begin walking along my life’s path once more, realizing the journey that I am on is what it is all about and I will arrive at my destination far too soon.Challenge for today: Stop, look and find a moment of joy to shimmer in your window.
- Ro

Credit for this is to Ro Paxson

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Out of Hiding

I've come out of blog hiding for a day or so. When I was at Katie's in Arizona, we had fast wireless internet. It was so nice to be able to do anything I wanted on the computer. I downloaded scrapbook kits, watched You-tube videos, created all my blogs and uploaded pictures to them. What fun it was. I was almost obsessed with it. But......when I came home I was faced again with the realization that if you live way out in the countryside of North Carolina, you have to put up with dial-up. That burst my blog bubble and I lost all interest in the computer altogether. You all have been the beneficiaries of the dial-up dillema that I am forced to live with. Your good luck is that I have not added any blogs to my blog and have not asked you to take a look. Until-today! I am in Indiana, at Jennie's and she is fortunate enough to have a wireless router with her cable and I can, for a few days, bless you with my wisdom and wit.
Ha, Ha!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

An Argument For Mom's Time Alone


An Island of Solitude By Debra Sansing Wood

As my husband arrived home from work this evening, I stumbled past him out the front door, grumbling that I needed to go for a walk. I told him I’d be back — later. The walk marked the end of a difficult day, the kind that feels like it will never end.
After a few minutes of walking alone, I was able to calm down and reflect on my day. Admittedly, the kids and I had some fun, and I accomplished some necessary tasks like paying bills, cleaning the bathrooms and taking care of an overdue oil chae for the car. Even so, I was beginning to feel terribly burned out. It didn’t help that I had begun the day without visiting what I call my island of solitude. In fact, I hadn’t been there all week, not even for a brief, soul-nourishing visit.
As a mother, I benefit from having some time to myself each day. I travel to my island of solitude by waking early, sometimes as early as five a.m., to have an hour or two alone before the house fills with the energetic activity of young children.
Waking early can require a lot of self-discipline or, in my case, a supportive husband. I often sleep through the alarm clock (despite the fact that the clock is on my side of the bed). When this happens, my husband gives me a gentle push and some encouragement by saying all I have to do is get out of bed, take a shower; then if I really want to, I can come back to bed and sleep until seven a.m. This tactic rarely fails. If I can just put my feet on the floor for more than fifteen seconds, I am on my way to an energizing retreat.
Once showered and dressed, my choice of an early morning activity is guided by the desire to nourish my spirit and limited only by my imagination. Most mornings, I will spend some time in focused scripture study and then in writing a journal entry, a letter to a friend, or an essay. In addition to scripture study and writing, I may enjoy a cup of warm cocoa or pore over a favorite magazine, reading an entire article without interruption. I often end my time alone with a walk, absorbing the tranquility and freshness of nature as the day unfolds.
Early morning solitude, regardless of one’s pursuits, seems to instill a deep sense of reverence for the gift of a new day. During my time alone, I make a commitment that this day will be special for my children, my husband, and me. Such a commitment, made each day, can add up to a lifetime lived in joy.
I smile when friends or acquaintances express disbelief that I would wake so early “just to have some time alone.” I suggest that before discarding the idea, they try some early morning solitude, doing something they love.
These sessions of solitude truly influence the quality of life for my entire family. When I return from an early morning walk just as my daughters are waking, they are quick to catch my calm, yet enthusiastic mood. This positive atmosphere seems to wrap us all in a wonderful sense of anticipation for the day ahead.
Of course not everyone can, or should, be an early riser. There might be opportunities to create solitude in the midst of a busy day, without giving up precious sleep. For example, ban housework during naptime. Assign bath duties to Dad, and take yourself for a walk at sunset. Limit one’s own television watching. Swap child care for a few hours a week with a friend. Sometimes just getting a shower before the kids wake up is sufficient!
Taking a walk this evening has reminded of how important solitude is to my well-being. I am ready to renew my commitment to taking time each day to gather wandering thoughts, regain perspective, and refresh my tired spirit. When I visit my island, however briefly, I wonder how I ever get along without it.
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