Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Thirty-Eight Hour Days

There is never enough time in a day.

Never enough time to get everything done.
Never enough time to rest.
Never enough time to eat.
Never enough time to relax. And never enough time to spend with God.

I put in a request to God the other day: "How about a few more hours in a day Lord? Fourteen more ought to do it."
In my heart I heard His answer. "Oh sure- I give you fourteen more hours a day, and all you'll do is fill it up with more stuff. Nope. Besides, the calendars for the next few years have already been printed. That's a lot of wasted calendars."

Well, crud. 

Fourteen more hours would have been nice. I could get a nap in. Maybe get some more errands or housecleaning done. Maybe I can even get that at-home business started! Maybe I could...um...

Maybe God has a point.

Back in the olden days, we never used to be this busy. Or maybe we were, but we still took out time from farming and harvesting to rest and do crafty things. The Amish did it all the time - and still do.

Even in more modern times we had time for friends, families, road trips, and vacations. Now we burn ourselves out until we're too blurry-eyed to function and fall into our beds for a restless nights' sleep.

Imagine what we would do with a thirty-eight hour day. I wonder if we'd get any rest. This is the age of 'Do Everything- Always'. The pressure is on to outdo not only those around us, but ourselves.

Better. Faster. More productive. Manage time better. Manage life better. And be the best parent/worker/whatever in the universe.

I think we've forgotten how to have fun. I know I've become much too serious for my own liking. I crave being creative and silly, but I need to reign it in because one can't tape multi-colored balloons to oneself and slip on a clear trash bag and act like a bag of jellybeans when one is on the job- unless that job is to act like a bag of jellybeans. 

Sometimes I'm so busy managing my time that I forget to make time to have fun. And I really, really, really need to do that.

It's getting to the point where I'll need those thirty-eight hour days just to get some sleep!

But God is right. If He gave me all that time, chances are I'd fill it with more stuff, and none of it would be about Him. I need to make time for God too!

I was put here to glorify Him. Not to micromanage the life He gave me. I also know that God is grinning His face off right now, because He knows that no matter how hard I try, I'll probably be micromanaging tomorrow- maybe even sooner. But He still loves me anyhow.

Well, you can't say I didn't try. Thirty-eight hours days would've been nice. So I'll take the twenty-four hours He gave me and do the best that I can.

Now where did I put those multi-color balloons and that clear trash bag?

Monday, June 13, 2016

Vehicular Misadventures

You never know when life is going to throw you a curve ball.

This week was a week of accidents. All three were involving vehicles- but not all driven by me. I swear!

Monday was full of promise. The van was washed and ready for a day of driving- or so I thought. I forgot to put gas in the night before. A half-full tank is better than none, but I prefer a full tank before starting any driving job. So instead of logging in after dropping my husband off to work like I usually do, I headed out of the driveway to the gas station.
Unfortunately one of the employees was coming in after I was half-way out and didn't see me. I stopped right before she hit me. My nice shiny van bore some not-so-shiny scratches and dents and the bumper was a little kinked. The woman's huge truck seemed to have more damage than mine- her bumper was up against her tire. (Hyundai 1, Toyota 0.) We were both okay, but it's going to take most of this week for the body shop to fix the damages to my van. I'll be given a rental, but I won't be doing any of my driving jobs this week.

A church friend was in traffic when someone hit her full force from behind, knocking her into the vehicle in front of her. Basically her van looks accordion-ish and was considered totalled. She sustained injuries to her back and neck, and she's wearing a neck brace. I know that because this wonderfully tough lady came to church on Sunday! I offered to drive her to and from work this week, but she has a rental and is still able to drive to work.

My husband was on his way to Adventurefest (a Christian Men's camping weekend) when the van he was driving (not ours) blew a tire while he was doing sixty on the highway. A trucker saw the tire blow and moved so no traffic would be in the way in case my husband lost control. 
By God's grace he was able to steady the van and move to the side of the road to replace the tire. (He did thank the truck driver for his forethought!)
They got to the event later than expected but everyone was okay- just a little shaken up. They had a trailer hitched to the back of the van when this happened and I thought the trailer steadied them, but I found out later it made the blowout worse, not better! Everyone was surprised that he retained control of the van- including my husband.

Three accidents this week that could have ended badly, but didn't because of God's grace. I pray for protection every day- not just for me, but my family and friends. He was definitely watching out for all of us this week.

Please pray for my church friend who's still hurting. And don't forget to pray for protection for you and your loved ones- He is listening!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Momming 101

I never saw myself as a homebody.

I also never saw myself as a career woman either. I was just a woman who worked a myriad of interesting jobs until I was married, then pregnant.

Egad- I was going to be a mother. Me. A woman who didn't know a thing about changing diapers or keeping a house clean.

That's what at-home moms do...right? Cook, clean and take care of the kids- that's the job.

And I was so not qualified.

I gave birth at home both times. When I was pregnant with my son (my first born), people asked me what I wanted- I wanted puppies. Puppies I knew how to care for- not these little people that made messes and diapers and needed training to become decent human beings!

Martha Stewart I ain't. Not even close.

But I decided that when I gave birth, no matter what, I'd be an at-home mom. 
Egad, what did I get myself into?

Well, I learned to clean, because kids make messes. I learned that newborns poop mustard for about a month and will wake me at the most ungodly hours demanding food and attention. I also learned that baby giggles were the best sounds in the universe, you get the best expressions when letting them taste lemons, and that a small container of baby powder will cover an entire porch in clouds of fine, white dust.

I also learned that I was more of a homebody that I admitted- even to myself.

I liked staying home and seeing my babies grow. I liked teaching them new things and showing them new flora and fauna on trips around the neighborhood. I liked making meals, sewing cute costumes, and playing games on the dining room floor.

And I liked being an at-home mom. I still do.

No one is more surprised by this than me. Though I do admit, I never did like cleaning. Ever.

Now my kids are almost grown and considering college. I am running out of people to raise! Oh sure, I have the cats, but they won't ever leave the house and start a life of their own- unless I leave the front door open by accident.

My momming days are almost over. Sort of. I guess I'll have to mom my kids from afar, via texts and phone calls. Either that, or move in with them. But no, they'd probably make me pay rent. Or clean. Ugh.

I'm still not Martha Stewart. My house is a mess. Teenagers aren't neat creatures. I'm hoping when they leave the nest, the mess will go with them. I also fear that the neater my house becomes, the emptier it will feel- at least after my husband and I celebrate the first few weeks of being alone for the first time since the first year of our marriage! 

I know my job will never be done. My role will simply change. I'll be the one they come to for financial advice (you know, the same advice they ignored when they lived with me), relationship tips and tricks, and eventually coming to me for Momming 101 (or Dadding 101 for my son). 

I never saw myself as a homebody, but I am. Even with all the jobs I have now, I'm working my way back to at-home work so I can be there for my kids. My teenagers still need me (just don't tell them that- they'll deny it vehemently), and I want to be there as much as I can before they test their wings.

I never saw myself as a career woman, but I am. Momming is a career- don't let anyone tell you differently! No one does as much as a parent does. No one has as much effect in the world as moms and dads do. By shaping our kids, we shape the future. How awesome is that?

Raising kids is the best non-paying job in the universe. At least concerning monetary non-payment. I accept payments in hugs, kisses, and the words 'You were right after all, Mom.' That last one, as far as I'm concerned, is worth a bazillion dollars!