Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Innie summer

I have to say, this has been one of the best summers ever.

I feel rested. I feel happy. My kids are getting along great. I'm keeping up with what's going on around here. No one feels grouchy or rushed. It has been bliss.

And I owe it all to a resolution to not schedule more than two things a week, or schedule (with rare exceptions being for all of three people) more than a week in advance.

I didn't have a full calendar staring at me saying, "You have no free time. It's all booked up."

I didn't have kids thrown off equilibrium with daily onslaughts of things to do, and go-go-go. I wasn't rushing to throw in a load of laundry before the next wave of guests came over.

Instead, I had full days to get done what needed to get done here, whether it was cutting the grass, doing some laundry, cleaning bathrooms, or painting. I enjoyed summery days taking pictures. I grouped together friends so that we could have fun in a big way, instead of lots of small ways that blocked out time. But I also had time to see friends in smaller ways.

My kids constructed imaginative scenarios that filled their days with laughter. They would run off sometimes with my phone and film fun plays. There were berries to sneak-eat in the field, fences to climb, bikes to ride. There were books to read and bracelets to make and lots of sunny fun swimming. They became good friends this summer, and didn't that make my heart swell! There was a lot of peace here.

We went to amusement parks with friends, hiked, had swim parties, did a week of vacation Bible school, had cook outs and sleepovers.

I learned that a full schedule isn't always best for us (even though for others it is their life preserver and joy). I learned to balance go-go-go with no-no-no (and not feel guilty).

Extroverts don't always understand introverts. I can't tell you the number of outies I've met who want to change someone in our family, or feel the need to comment about (any one of) us.

I have a lot of friends who are outies, and a lot who are innies. At times, I can relate to either side. But this summer, it was delightfully innie. 

In the fall we'll pick up the pace with school, piano, dance, and all the fun field trips, birthday parties, holidays, play dates, small groups, and studies. This type of intentional summer was exactly what I needed to recharge for it.

Monday, August 18, 2014

One thousand gifts and still counting (5920-5943)

big, bold sunflowers in a vase
gifted tomatoes in a salad
tomatoes plucked from my own garden (I've waited four years for this!)
the Global Leadership Summit
a way to contribute
the Greek salad wrap for lunch

Julie next to us at worship
sunny days
friends who helped out with my kids
and that my kids had so much fun
Lanie eating chili

a comfy bed
clean, cold water
clean clothes
innie days
frogs in the pool

three more weeks of summer break
that mine was the card he saved
school books ordered
and coffee too
beans and rice

chairs on the patio
warm slate against my feet
a little who still climbs into bed with us in the middle of the night

Friday, August 15, 2014

Queen Mary and the GLS

This is my third year attending the Global Leadership Summit.

I don't remember too much from the first year, but I'm sure I would if I looked at my notes.

Last year I was completely undone and won over by Brene Brown, her thoughts on shame, suffering, exclusion. (So thankful I was in nearly a private room instead of the large center when I heard her talk. I was on the cusp of losing composure. Saw a friend outside when we broke for lunch, and could hardly speak. Went home shaken cried. So thankful for honest talks.)

This year was also informative and moving, but on a different level. I loved Bill Hybels' opening talk and how he spoke of a woman who tried to rowboat to Ireland (or someplace. That wasn't nearly the point.) Along the way, she had been battered and beaten by weather; she sent out a call for help. A giant of a ship showed up with provisions and encouragement for her--this woman in her little boat on a big ocean. The name of the ship was the Queen Mary.

My friend Reggie was in the audience yesterday. I sat with her for the first part. Turned to her at the break and said, managing to keep my composure, though my eyes filled briefly with tears, "I thought of you when Bill talked about that woman on the ocean. You are my Queen Mary. When we moved here, I was so overwhelmed by all that had to be done. I will never forget how you went out in the garden and pulled weeds with me that day. You just showed up and helped me."

She got teary too.

Today, she sought me out and said, "I was thinking about what you said last night. Do you know my name is Mary Regina? Regina means queen."

God, you are a delightful mystery. I love you, Lord, like crazy. You weave rich meaning into everything.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

The cluttered mind of back to school

Tabs online. 

Yankee Candle
Conscious Discipline
A Beowulf boast assignment
A look at depression
Food industry trickery
Forgiveness (does not mean) fellowship
A Pottery Barn duvet cover in paisley and cozy red tones (want, want)
Several tabs to books for the next school year
Andy Stanley podcast
Some stuff on Proverbs
A blog by homeschool moms
A blog post on parental influence
Scriptures on pleasing God rather than pleasing people
Joyce Meyer

Altogether: 25.

And if that isn't enough, you should really see the paper explosion across my work space. About 15+ books and at least three armloads of paper.

And a pool floaty.


Why is there a pool floaty on the table?