Monday, July 12, 2010

Navigator

We just got back from a good 'ol fashioned family road trip. 13 states in 15 days, 5200 miles...all together, on the road. It was a very long and adventurous trip. One thing I learned was that my husband HAS to drive. Not that I didn't offer, he just prefers to be the driver. Fine with me, I got to be the Navigator.

Now, we do have a GPS but I loved looking at the atlas. Many times, I would find something on the atlas and have my husband reprogram the GPS so we could follow my path.

You'd think that with both of those we'd never get lost, right? Funny thing, we did. Several times. They make for good stories now, but at the time it was frustrating.  Circling around, fussing at the GPS, and even with my trusty atlas, we had to meander around until we found the main highway again.  What a sense of relief that brings-finding your way after being lost.

The technology of today is astounding, but it can still lead you astray, as our GPS did (on more than one occasion).  There are things of this world that can do the same for our children, and for us. The newest, latest, greatest, whatever. They have to have it!! But is it good for them? Is it good for us?

Made me think that as much as much as we plan, things always go astray.  As much as we plan for our children to grow up a certain way, they are their own people and we quickly find that they have to make some of their own mistakes to learn. Just as we did. So if they try it on their own, what will help them make good decisions?


The Bible. That's it. It's more than our atlas. It is our map to the way God wants us to live our lives. But if we never open it, we will get lost. Follow the things of this world, you get lost. Even with study and reading of the Bible, if we choose not to apply what we learn, we get lost.  But with careful teaching, and thoughtful meaningful prayer we begin to navigate our way through life. We make better choices. We are more careful with our thoughts and our words, and actions. God's word is the light to our path.

" Light of the world you stepped down into darkness, open my eyes let me see."

Sometimes it takes a few detours to find our way back.  Back to the life our Lord has planned for us.   One of our jobs as moms is to teach our children how to find their way when they are lost. We teach them how to live by modeling and gentle instruction.  We teach them by doing what God as instructed us to do.  Through the Bible. 

Make me know Your ways, O LORD;Teach me Your paths. ~Psalm 25:4

Don't rely on the things of this world to get you where you need to go, rely on the Lord, and His word. God sent us his guidebook, our instruction manual. All we have to do is open, read, and follow. Navigate your way to the life God intended for you. :0) My prayer is that we follow where the Lord is leading us.

Many blessings on your journey...Where are you headed today?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Planner

Today I am a Planner. I have laid out many plans for an upcoming family trip. I have plans for my day on my to-do list. But we know what they said about the "best laid plans".  As much as I think I can be in control of the future by making lists and plans, it doesn't always work out that way. "Letting go and Letting God" is much more difficult than it sounds.

Why the need to be in control? Fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of failure, fear of surprise, you get the picture. So to counteract, I plan. Planning is okay as long as we remember that God is ultimately in control. "Fear not, for I am with you; fear not, do not be afraid." (I know that is scripture but I love it in the kid's song!)

Worry leads to stress, stress leads to a wealth of other problems. It is okay to be conscientious about life, but not to fret over it. What will happen will happen. We have choices to make, and hope that we have made the right ones. If not, we learn from them. No need to worry. "Angels watching over me, every step I take"-Amy Grant :0)

So I won't worry about my pets, or my house while we are gone. I won't worry if we packed enough clothes (they do have these places called laundry-mats). I won't worry how long each day's drive will be-we have GPS, maps, and 24 hours each day. I won't worry about being cooped up in a car for 6-8 hours daily. I will enjoy this wonderful country we live in. I will enjoy the company of my family. I will relax. I will be grateful.

So today as I go about executing my plans, I will remember to "Let Go and and Let God" be in control. There is no fate, just God's plan in motion. So I plan to go-let's move people!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Housekeeper

Today-I keep my house. That's what a housekeeper is, right? Keeper of the house?  Dictionary.com says- "a person, often hired, who does or directs the domestic work and planning necessary for a home, as cleaning or buying food." Not hired, but still responsible for all the rest. :0) 

And I have to tell you, I HATE CLEANING! I am a pile-er. I make piles, to get to later. So inevitably I begin to start stepping over the piles as I go about my day. Hubby hates it. He is a natural born cleaner. I know how to clean well, I just prefer to do something else. But I love how the house feels when everything is in its place.  Somebody has to make that happen, so I begrudgingly do the deed. Clean the house. Grumpily usually. 'Cause I'd rather be doing something else.  But it has to be done. Need to adjust my thinking. I AM the keeper of the house. This house.

Our pastor made a great statement about being content and wanting what you have, instead of asking God for something else. We have been in our home for 8 1/2 years, but during that time Andy and I have often thought of moving. Why? Not being content? Wanting the next best thing? We have struggled with this for years. But this spring, we committed to this house by sprucing the place up a bit. New flooring and we redid our fireplace. Got a couple new pieces of furniture. Couple of new rugs. Place looks nice, has a little more style, feels cozy and we feel more content. And we feel more settled...after 8 1/2 years. :0)


I think investing our time and money into our homes gives us that sense of ownership, that pride of owning.  I did a bible study a few years ago "Seven Life Principles for Every Woman" by Sharon Jaynes and Lysa Terkeurst with a group of family and friends.  There was a whole principle dedicated to hospitality and organization.  Time to revisit that study. But what I remember most was that it is one of duties as Christian women to keep our house-clean, orderly, hospitable.  You know people with these homes. You walk in and it's like "Aww, so nice here." I want that for my home...always. 


So today, I keep my home. I will praise God for the blessings in my life and for his great goodness as I do the laundry, make the beds, do the dishes, pick up toys, scrub toilets and wait for the bug guy to come spray for summer cockroaches (ewwww). 

I pledge to keep my house, to be content, and make it a hospitable home for all who enter. 

"As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."


What does your day hold for you?


Thursday, June 17, 2010

Health Manager

Today I am a Health Manager. I should be everyday but today is especially important. Here's why. I have followup doctors appointments...Two weeks ago I thought I was having a heart attack. Literally. I woke up in the middle of the night, heart racing, feeling chest pressure, felt like my entire body was on fire, and like I was going to pass out. Scared my hubby and I to death...enough that he called 911. My first ride to the hospital in an ambulance. Hopefully my last.


After the tests and followup visits, it turns out I have sleep apnea and my body was in full panic mode for air. That and I have a lot of stress (wonder why) that I internalize which manifests itself in the form of panic attacks.  Could it also be that I am 100 lbs overweight? Taking high blood pressure meds? Anti-anxiety meds? Sleeping aids? Yea...feels like a mess!!! This weight has been a battle for my entire adult (and adolescent) life. I have done WW, protein, slimfast, phentermine, you name it, I have tried it. Some times with great results, but in the end the pounds come back...with friends. Ughh...frustrating!

Apparently the scare of getting on high blood pressure meds didn't scare me enough. Not sleeping at night didn't scare me enough.  Photos of me didn't scare me enough.  My husband's gentle encouragement didn't make a difference. My family support didn't make a difference.  Knowing that I am at HIGH risk of heart disease didn't scare me enough. Watching two women that were family friends pass away from heart issues didn't scare me enough. But a flippin' ride in an ambulance at 1 am-THAT made a difference.

But this scare sent my husband and I into full force "Health Manager" mode. Within 3 days, under the advice of my doctor, we joined a gym. Now - we have had gym memberships over the last 20 years but they have previously been neglected after a while. Too busy, got bored, not enough time, yada yada yada...But this time it is different. It has to be. I intend on being around for a long time, God willing. And know that I am fully convinced the Lord is in control.

Sometimes when we are so involved in our lives that we have fallen away from our priorities, God has a way of shaking things up a bit. It's His "Helllooooo....FOCUS!!" for us. :-)

So, we signed up for a family membership and now we go 5-6 times per week, and I have a personal trainer to kick my booty. Already I feel great! And I am THANKING God for the wake-up call!! I don't think I would been gung-ho for this lifestyle change had it not been for that scare. Red flags waving in front of your face are very hard to ignore. Phillipians 4:13-"I can do all things through CHRIST who strengthens me." ALL things-even working off 100 lbs of weight and getting off meds. The journey has begun. I will blog about my progress and my thoughts. Would love to hear of your journey, your many jobs. Feel free to post and comment.

For all the jobs we as busy moms have, I have to say that Health Manager has to be one of the most important. So Moms, take care of yourselves and your families. Live a healthy life, Laugh with friends and family often, and Love them always.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Administrator to Animated Movie Critic

Today as I got home, I morphed. It is something tht happens the very moment I step through the front door. As I drive from the elementary school where I am the principal, I consciously shift to prepare myself for the rest of my day. This time of year the students have already begun sleeping in, swimming and slumber parties while the rest of the school staff closes up the final details of the year while simultaneously preparing for the upcoming fall.  Trust me, there is a lot to do. But it's eerie, quiet. No students at a school just isn't right.  So anxious to see my own, I hurry home.

Now, with the cable on the fritz, we are limited to our DVD player and PS3. Not being much of a gamer, the movies begin to roll. I know...as an educator I am obliged to say, "Not too much TV".  But also being a media fine arts major in college (another much older hat), I often relax with cinema. And being that we have kiddos (one a new teenager and one just beginning the school journey), we have a plethora of animated movies.

Tonight it is a disney flick. As much as I try to keep busy, I get sucked in. Not only to the playful story line but I am to this day amazed at the computer graphics. Love them!! Bright, bold and fun!

Now the heros have won and my time wearing my movie critic hat is drawing to a close as we prepare to wind up our day.  Deep breath...it's just me. No other hats at this moment, just me, hanging out with my family, and sitting with my thoughts. And you...thanks for reading!
As moms, we wear many hats: Mother, Wife, Sister, Daughter, Friend, Lover, Banker, Accountant, Chef, Housekeeper, Chauffeur...

But we also wear other hats-those of OUR choosing: Artist, Singer, Writer, Reader, Thinker, Organizer, Educator, Professional...just to name a few.

This blog is for all of us who are the "Jack of All Trades", or more for our purposes here "Mom of Many Trades", we accomplish much with the support, advice and prayer of our family and friends.

So feel free to post and be encouraged!