On Cherishing Every Moment in Motherhood

Over the past several years, I’ve noticed a trend in the themes of many of the blog posts and articles popping up on my social media feeds. The theme? Moms of young kids who have been stopped by someone (usually an older person) who reminded them to “cherish every moment” while their children are young, and who feel the need to revolt at such an admonishment. “NO! Motherhood is hard and full of lots of challenging, stressful, difficult moments! How dare someone guilt me into cherishing every single moment!! These darn older people are out of touch!!!” (OK, so I’m paraphrasing there. But you get my drift. ;)).

On one hand, I understand this response. Mommying little ones is really, really hard. There are a ton of stressful and difficult moments! I know this—I’m living it! For all the amazing moments that make my heart burst, there are many moments where I want to collapse into a pile of tears. It is good to acknowledge that our life isn’t Pinterest-perfect, that we need Jesus in every one of those moments, and that His grace is sufficient in our weakness.

The thing is…what if these older folks are onto something?

What if they’re not trying to “guilt us” when they tell us to cherish every moment, but are reminding us that these tough times are fleeting, and that finding the good in them is worth it?

What if we acknowledged that they possess something we don’t yet have: perspective?

What if God is using them as a mouthpiece to whisper to us the Scriptural call to “be joyful always”?

What if, instead of bristling in defense, we stopped, breathed, and thanked God for that reminder to choose joy?

Just a thought.

Hang in there, moms.❤

 

Who Moved My Blog…?

Well, I guess I did!

Find me at The Dazzled Life.

Hope to see you there!

The Family Book of Advent

There were giggles in our living room the other night. They emanated from my pajama-clad kids as they watched the orange balloon swirl and sputter aimlessly about the room in a merry, joyful dance.

We’d just been reading about joy, you see — the joy of the Spirit of God. How it fills us. How it filled the babe in Mary’s cousin Elizabeth’s womb, so that even the unborn John the Baptist couldn’t help but dance for joy. How sometimes His gladness is so great and so powerful we can’t contain ourselves — we just have to let it out. Kind of like a balloon.

So we took turns blowing air into the balloon, til it was round and full — then, WHOOOSH! Let it go into it’s crazy, joyful, noisy, giggle-inducing swirl. 

What a perfect, memorable illustration. I got it from this fabulous book: “The Family Book of Advent”, by longtime friend Carol Garborg.
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I’d had my eye on this book for awhile, so when Carol asked if I’d be willing to review it, I jumped at the chance! Advent calendars/devotionals that are designed to help little ones really grasp the true meaning of the season have been hard for me to come by — most seem to be focused on either the commercial or adults/older children — so this really hits the spot for me. 25 days of devotions, illustrations and simple activities (using mostly basic, household items) to help get kids excited for what Christmas is REALLY all about. Just paging through the book gets me excited!

(plus, it’s just a beautiful book!)

I’m definitely planning on giving this one a go with my kids this year — maybe it’s something that would work for you, too!

“The Family Book of Advent” by Carol Garborg is available at many Christian bookstores. You can also check out the website for Carol’s ministry, Faith Family Style.

Happy Advent!

Strawberry Shortcake & Baking Therapy

I’ve been getting into baking a tiny bit lately, which is kind of funny because if there is one room I typically try to get myself out of as quickly as possible, it’s the kitchen. The dishes. The endless dishes…

Added to that is the fact that, while I’m OK at cookies and bars, I’ve made my share of cake wrecks. I give you exhibit A:

(note: That is not a key-lime pie. it is a cookie cake. A cookie cake that, as it turned out,
was primarily filled with raw cookie dough. Ugh. )

Let’s just say I’ve made more than one last-minute trip to CUB to pick up a box of cookies when it was my turn to bring treats to the gathering. And…seriously, it just takes way less time to make it from a box, and with my crazy life these days, time is a precious commodity.

But a couple weeks ago, I made my daughter’s birthday party cake. From scratch. And it worked (after two tries. -Ahem-). And it was FUN.

(important note: anything looks pretty if you put roses on the top.)

Then, tonight, for no good reason at all other than I had whipping cream and strawberries in my fridge, I made strawberry shortcake. And it was good. Really good. Like, so good I had to sit down as I took a bite good (*I don’t think that’s boasting…? All I did was follow the instructions in the recipe, and voila! :)). And it was oddly and surprisingly therapeutic. Who knew?!

Anyway, I was kind of excited about it, so I thought I’d blog about it, because if I can bake it, you can too. Seriously. You can. Try it and tell me what you think!

I used the recipe from the amazing Magnolia Bakery cookbook, but it’s posted here as well.

Cheers!❤

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Grace.

Do you have your own special language that you speak in your family? Words that evolved from kid-speak to commonplace in your home, yet would draw a quizzical look from anyone on the outside?

We have some of those. In our home we eat “Chicka bars” (nutrigrain bars) and we routinely call the grandparents “Mow Grandma & Grandpa” and “Kay Bop-Bop” (there’s a story behind each, but that’s another blog post for another day :)).

And then there’s “grace”.

Awhile back, our 3-year-old girl received a red, plastic cross necklace as a Christmas gift from her teachers in the BSF group we are a part of. Somehow — and we’re still not sure how — she started calling it her “grace”…and now, any time she sees a cross, that’s what it is: a “grace”.

This past Friday, as I was reading the story of the crucifixion from her children’s Bible, she saw the illustration of the three crosses on the hill, and she asked me “Why are there three graces?”.

I don’t think I’ll correct her, because I love it. We see a cross — she sees grace.

 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing;
it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Ephesians 2:8-9

 

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The Lost Blanket Adventure

Oh my, somehow I forgot to post my favorite blanket picture of them all! Here it is:

Project 365: March 21-25

Sweet little pig-tailed girl…

Sweet little  yawning girl…

Baby getting cuddles from Grandpa & Auntie B…

 

It snowed on Wednesday, so I declared it “comfy clothes day”…

 

Fevers & coughs abounded in our house this week, so copious amounts of lots of Barney was watched and a few lots of books were read…

 

Baby girl’s got a strong neck!

 

…and she can smile, too. (No, she didn’t do it for this picture, but she was about to. I promise.)…