Monday, July 28, 2014

Soul Seeking In Chaos #MindfulMotheringMondays

"I need that morning time. Before the kids are up, I need to just sit alone for a while, hear my own thoughts and pray my own prayers."

My friend has found her place, how she best stilled the mania of life at the center of a family and was able to surface, just a bit, for some air. Without intention, without a plan, the days can just wash right over us with all their needs and noise and we can lose, big. Giving your life away to your family shouldn't mean starving your soul and sometimes I forget that, forget me, and run myself right into the ground.

The older I get, the more I realize how kinetic I am.

Sitting still is not and has never been a strong suit of mine. She talks about her all important alone time and how good it feels to just sit quietly with a cup of coffee and I think - oh, I'd be so bored.

Bored because, for me, movement inspires thought. Without it, I'm not sure what to do. Movement unlocks my imagination, stirs my spirit, awakens all of me. Whether in a ballet class as a teen or cleaning up a kitchen as a Mom, movement moves me into my brainspace. I can only write on a computer, fingers flying over keys like I'm playing an instrument. I do my best thinking while moving, chatting with my best friend while furiously folding laundry or scrubbing a tub.

A few days ago I settled my babies down for naps while the big kids played outside. With no book to read and feeling a bit uninspired with my knitting, I turned on my kitchen. A sink full of dishes, a floor that needed mopping - and me. I turned on the water and it was like I resurfaced inside myself. In a quiet house, I could have sat somewhere alone. Instead, I worked. I baked. And I thought, deep and hard.

Looking out across the dusty yard, desperate for rain, I found myself. I talked with God. I get so caught up in all the outward world and completely forget to just turn in. Look up. And remember who I am and why I am.

Setting things right, neatly lining up stitches or sweeping a floor clean is more than just an action to me. The methodical straightening of life puts my wheels on the track and from there I can go - escaping the confines of this little house and these little people and reaching for something more. Something deeper. Something that refreshes and revitalizes me and sets me back on my feet, ready to plunge right back in.

Hours later, when the babies awakened and kids covered in dust tramped back in, the house was clean and cookies were baked and I felt centered. Reassured. Found, for the first time in so long. I don't need elaborate get aways or coffee shop alone time. I just need to move. When I do, I surface, stretching out and inhabiting all of me again.

Reminded of my purpose, my passions, my peace. Filled up and ready to get back to it.


{It's Mindful Mothering Mondays, a day to take a deep breath and write out your mothering journey, whatever form it takes. A day to link up for encouragement from others who are in this same phase of life. A day of writing out the trials and triumphs and what you're learning right where you are, right now.

You might post recent struggles or thoughts. Maybe just a picture or a quote. Or maybe you'll just come here and read the links that others post. Whatever form your participation takes, this is a day for you.
We are all in this, together. Together, we can encourage and build one another up, be honest with our shortcomings and strengthened by community to keep fighting the good fight.

I chose Mondays because what Mama doesn't need a little encouragement on a Monday? As such, I'll have the link up ready to go on Sunday night for you to begin submitting your links.

I hope you'll meet with me each Monday! Here's what to do ~

Link up your post below in the comments. Remember to put the link to the exact post you want to link, and not just your blog url. Include in your post a link back here so others who want to join in can find us! And visit some other Mamas who have linked up.

Post the community graphic within your post, so people who are reading your Mindful Mothering post can come back here and find the rest of us!

Invite the writers of your favorite blogs to join in!

Share this meme with others on facebook and twitter. This community is for all moms, and the more that participate, the more we will be able to enjoy!!}

Grab the graphic here:


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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Cables and Air Raids {Yarn Along}

I haven't done yarn along in a while. I've been kind of slogging through a few different projects, nothing very exciting or new. Summertime just doesn't really translate to a lot of knitting to me, although a few cool, autumn-ish nights recently saw me making some plans for winter wool.

The thing about knitting for me is when the mood strikes? I have to go for it. Thankfully I have a few "in progress" projects to choose from. I have been working on a Neverland hoodie for a friend, but took a brief break when I remembered I have a baby shower to attend next week.

I pulled out this sweater I had started for Rosie and never finished. Fingering weight super soft stroll tonal in the sunnyside baby pattern with cables. All it needed is a finished sleeve and some buttons. That I can do. Of course I was nearly done when I left it unattended for a bit, and wouldn't you know the toddler got into it and ripped that sleeve clean out. Toddlers are something of an occupational hazard around here, but thankfully I have plenty of time for a do-over.

My sister in law loaned me her copy of Unbroken and I'm about halfway through. I tried to read it to unwind after a late night work out and ended up dreaming adrenaline-fueled dreams of WWII battles. Not exactly a relaxing read but still an amazing book. I'll just remember in the future to put this one down a good hour or so before bed.

Linking up with Ginny today! What are you working on/reading this summer?

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Chasing Joy

{Joining with my friend Mel for her first ever link up, Transparent Tuesday. Something all of us need from time to time! Check out her blog for more information and to link up!}

Sometimes I feel like I do many things, but none of them particularly well. A girl of many interests, when passion strikes - I'm sucked in. So I learn to knit and bake and sew and sing and manage to get to a mediocre level of ability before flitting off to the next thing I want to try. I've been this way my whole life. I remember telling my sister as a kid - "I truly believe I can do anything. But I'm really good at nothing."

I am blessed with a variety of friends. The type A types, with impeccably decorated homes and seemingly endless energy for and interest in new modes of organization. The creative types who always have one (or ten) projects going at once and seem immune to stress from the mess.  The active ones, who love pushing themselves to the limit and give every indication of leaping out of bed each day, thrilled with nothing more than running a half marathon before breakfast. The fun ones, with as many kids as possible running through their homes each day while they look on with relaxed enjoyment.

I love and am inspired by each one of them, but often I wonder where on earth I fall in those categories.

It all comes down to choices and priorities. Whether I'm being intentional or not, I'm making choices. The choice to stay up late reading keeps me in bed later into the morning, bumping my workout time out of the picture. The choice to have 6 children in a small home. The choice to knit, or catch up with a friend or watch my babies play. I fool no one but myself when I use my choices as excuses.

Occasionally I am so inspired by a friend that I give their priorities a try. "If she can do it, so can I!" I think, gritting my teeth and trying to shoehorn my multifaceted personality into just one area. It works, for a few days, and then I slip back into old patterns. Because really, this is me.  This is how I live. I'm a little undisciplined and a lot open to living my day as it presents itself. Sure, it could be tidier and quieter. I could be more toned and organized. But I'm a girl who loves falling into a book and emerging hours later. I can be creative when and only when the mood strikes, and when it does, I am helpless to resist. I adore handing out sticky popsicles to a long line of dirty summer kids and shrugging off the ensuing mess. I love long talks with my best friend even if it means that I don't get to the laundry or wind up ordering pizza for dinner.

The world needs all types of people. I'm so blessed by my many friends and their many strengths and abilities and personalities. They inspire, they encourage, they make my world more beautiful and intricate by being their amazing selves.

When I think about it, I realize - I'm a joy chaser. Wherever there is happiness and love and fun, that's where I want to be. I want to live in the center of all things good. Even if that means doing nothing particularly well.

I choose joy.

A little mess, a lot of mayhem, and a heaping dose of  (imperfect) joy.

Our Growing Roots

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