New Years, Christmas and Everything in the Middle

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It was here and now it’s gone!  Well, almost gone.  I am talking about 2015.

I mean it’s only December 31st, and for procrastinators like me, that is plenty of time!  Time to evaluate the past year, finish up on resolutions (it’s completely possible to finish those books I resolved to read in the next 10hrs), and work on goals for the next year.  I have plenty of time.  In fact, I think I am going to finish the laundry and write on my blog, before I check these things off my list!  Like I said, I have plenty of time

Let the cycle of procrastination begin!

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The older I get, the more conscience I am of the slippage of time.  I am sure everyone feels this way and I’m just late to the party, but I can’t help but feel this was the fastest year I have lived through.  And even though it’s exactly the same amount of time as the last year, it still seems faster than the year before.  Does this make me less of a procrastinator?  NO.  Does this make me feel like a sentimental, weepy fool?  YES.  One hundred times; YES!

I have written to death the fact that my kiddos are now pretty much teenagers, and about how much I miss them being babies/toddlers.   Really, I miss anything but teenagers (people say that someday I will miss this stage too…but, My Lord in Heaven, I KNOW it will not be anytime soon).

Some people are teen whisperers.  Teenagers are their jam!  They love this stage.  They are able to somehow communicate intelligently with these little hormonal monsters!  It’s like their soul purpose was to parent teenagers.  I am not this person!  I know I don’t have a choice in the matter because all babies turn into teenagers, but I feel like I am fumbling my way through these years.  Left wishing for the years when I felt like somewhat of an expert to be back.

The other day, my oldest was in the depths of despair because he was the only one without a specific XBOX game.  Now, please recall that Christmas was only a week ago and he received, what can only be described as a “crap load” of gifts!  Ranging from clothes, shoes, a portable speaker and a variety of many other things; he did all right when it came to receiving end of Christmas.

But, he didn’t get this particular game.

Now, I knew he was going to get it.  We had spoken to the grandparents and conveyed to them how much he wanted it.  He was getting the game.  He just had to wait until we were able to see them.

I could see the way this little disappointment was working it’s way through his teenage mind.  He really is s a good kid, so he was more than grateful for everything he had gotten. But, it was still in the back of his mind that he hadn’t gotten what he really wanted.  It was very interesting to watch this play out in his mind and actions.

It started with lots of thank-yous.  Then it went to wishfulness (you know, “thank you but I wish I would have gotten this game too” kinda thing).  Then maybe someone had gotten it for him and he just hadn’t received it yet.  It moved on to that maybe he could do some chores around the house to earn the money to buy the game.  Then there was regret for spending his last paycheck on something other than the game.  Then would I buy it for him and he would work it off.  Then it was, you know “I really deserved to get this game but, I didn’t and I got a lot of other things I like, so I guess it’s okay.”

Then, the ugly teenager hormones began to rear their ugly head and took over my sweet child’s mind and heart

He deserved the game.  Everyone else had it, he shouldn’t have to wait and see if he got it.  We should just buy it for him.  He would work it off; better yet, we should just buy it for him because he was a good kid.  Finally (the best one yet), IT WASN’T FAIR!  He was being left out and didn’t have the game.  Of course, I was in complete control of fixing this for him and making him happy and I wasn’t doing anything about it!!!

OH

MY

I swear to you sometimes you see yourself in your kids and it is so humbling you just want to run away and hide!  You just want to cry, pray, and plead with God that they don’t have to learn the same hard lessons you are still trying to learn…that they will be spared the same regrettable heartache you could have avoided if you would have just been still and silent…

You see, I have been dealing with this exact same scenario in my own life.

There is something I want.  Something I want really bad.  It’s a good thing.  It’s not a selfish thing.  And, it is entirely out of my control.  And, I want it so bad I can hardly stand it anymore.

And, I have watched myself go through that same thought process that he went through.

I have said the same things to God for what seems like forever.  I have tried to be thankful.  I have tried to bargain/earn it.  I have even allowed myself to follow that ugly little cycle all the way to self-entitlement; and I am not a teenager anymore…

I found myself on the stairs looking into my son’s blue eyes saying the words I am sure God has been trying to get me to understand for the at least 8 years now.

“Sometimes, you just have to trust that I have your best interest at heart.  Sometimes, it’s not the best thing for you to get exactly what you want the minute you think of it.  Sometimes, I know that waiting is the best thing you can do.”  

As, I  spoke those words to him I almost had an out of body experience.

You see, I knew he was getting the game, and I knew when he was getting it.  It was so silly for him to waste all of his time scheming ways to get it.  It was a waste of his emotional energy to dwell on all the reasons he deserved it, and to try to control how he got it.

And, all of the sudden I felt God’s heart when He sees mine.

I wish that was the end of it.  That he listened to me and moved on.  It wasn’t and he didn’t.

But, he settled down, did other things and, stopped whining about it.  Yesterday, he got his hearts desire (insert sarcasm here): Star Wars Battlefront.

I am going to choose happy on my way into this New Year because of what can only be described as the Lord’s divine patience with me.  God has a way of showing me my own teenage heart in what is usually gentle and patient way.  A way that I could do well to learn as I navigate through this pretty messy stage where I have no idea what I am doing and tend to lose my cool once in awhile (yeah, right).

Now, where did I put that list of resolutions…oh, look it’s snowing; I should definitely shovel the driveway first!  I have plenty of time 🙂

 

 

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Two Weeks Too Late

It’s snowing!

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Everything that was gray, and gloomy, and dark is now white, and cheery, and bright.  I was SO wanting this snow for Christmas.  You know, the picture perfect holiday.

Snow covered trees, a fire in the fireplace, hot chocolate, sugar cookies, and of course twinkle lights.  Lots and lots of twinkle lights!  I am convinced that family around the tree, with Bing Crosby crooning in the background, feels better with snow on the ground.

However, the picture I dreamt about was a little more beautiful than the reality.

Instead, it was a gloomy, rainy, grayish brown  holiday.  It felt odd to play Christmas music.  The decorated cookies felt out of place, and even the fire seemed too warm because I could see the grass outside.  To be completely honest, I feel like this snow is really, really late!!!

Don’t get me wrong, it’s absolutely beautiful, but where was it two weeks ago?!!

Even though the snow was absent, in my opinion, this little Myers family had one of the best holidays on record!  We spent time together, spent time with family, and of course got to sleep in!  We really didn’t have any obligations so we were able to relax and enjoy each other along with our presents!  We even got to read a few books too 🙂

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I don’t want to admit it, but I am pretty sure that the lack of snow contributed to the awesomeness of our Christmas break.  Honestly, the absence of the white fluffy powder outside made me re-examine my expectations.

I was no longer striving to make everything Pinterest-picture perfect and traditional.  It was pretty clear that this year was going to be anything but traditional for us.  No snow, and a change in our Christmas-eve-at-the-in-laws tradition definitely shook up the norm!

We usually watch Christmas movies leading up to the holiday, no matter how late we have to stay up to accomplish it; we didn’t.  We usually set out cookies for Santa, even though we’ve kind of outgrown it; not this year (FYI: that one made my heart just a little sad).  We usually get Starbucks and drive around and look at lights; nope, everyone wanted to stay home that night.  And, it was okay…

I decided to just let stuff happen.  And, you know what?

It turned out to be perfect anyway! Maybe the key to choosing happy is not having any expectations?  Well, that sounds a little cynical, but….

Maybe living without expectations and in complete surrender to what is going around us make us depend more on each other.  In turn, maybe this forces to be completely pliable in the hands of our Creator, and more open to what He has wants us to be.

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As we start 2015,  I am going to do my best to let go of expectations.  The ones I place on myself, the ones I place on others, and the ones I place on my Creator.  I want to give my all to the One who holds my heart.  To find myself at home in His love.  Trusting completely that He will exceed any expectation I could dream up anyway.  Letting go of all that I think I am or should be,  so that I can be who He wants me to be.  Allowing Him to replace my fear with His freedom!

On, this very snowy and very white week in January, I will choose happy because even though I feel like it was two weeks too late, He makes everything beautiful in His own perfect time.

 

Tangled and Messy

We are full of sore throats, headaches, and fevers here in my little corner.  So, we are diffusing, ingesting, and basically bathing in Thieves oil!  I can’t say enough good things about essential oils; especially Thieves this time of year ♥

Still, I thought maybe I could offer a little note of encouragement today; I know I need it with all the germs and tears and aches and pains around here….why is it so much harder to be a nurse in your own home?  

While trying to keep my home disinfected, I am also attempting some handmade Christmas gifts this year.  Of course, this involves lots of yarn!  I am doing my best, to use the meager crochet skills I have, to make some passable gifts.  I quickly realized that unless I rework the yarn from the skein into a ball, it inevitably ends up a chaotic, knotted pile of messy unusable yarn.  I could never figure out why that extra step was necessary; now, I know!  So, now I am trying to put a knotted and tangled mess into a knotted and organized mess with my crochet hook.

Hopefully, my family will appreciate the love I am putting in to the gifts, even when they are not perfectly perfect…

Sometimes, my life feels like this too!  All tangled up and messy; not quite sure about my decisions or direction.  In desperate need of the One who can rework the knots into something with purpose.

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Be encouraged today, because it doesn’t matter how big the mess is, or how tight those knots are; He is in the business of making beauty out of chaos.  As a matter of fact, I am pretty sure He does His best work when we finally surrender!

With Christmas around the corner, and the season of Advent upon us, I can’t help but think about the creativity of our God!  The story of redemption is woven with such intricacy and purpose it’s impossible to ignore God’s artistic touch.  I love seeing how the stories connect and are intertwined; from the very beginning in the Garden, all the way to the manger in Bethlehem, and eventually to a new beginning at the Cross.

Today, I am choosing happy because we have an amazing, creative God!  He wove the most beautiful story of redemption out of the mess that was left in the Garden.  Just imagine what He can do with our knots and tangles!