Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Jamie's Precious Peas

Well, I've been invited to write book reviews for Jamie's Precious Peas. I just posted my first one here about a book entitled "I Want You to Know Me." Take a look and enjoy all that Jamie has to offer.

I met Jamie at soccer where our oldest children were playing and our youngest children entertained each other. Jamie is a hard working, amazing woman! Her website is dedicated to reviewing children, family, and mom products. I'll keep you posted when I review for her.

Thanks for checking it out!

Speaking and Listening

A friend recently said she was reading the book of James in the Bible. Though I've read it before, I just finished reading Mark and thought James was a good place for my morning and evening Bible reading. I usually read just enough to give me something to think about and ponder.

This morning I encountered this nugget, "Let every person be swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath" (chapter 1, verse 19).  Ouch. With Thanksgiving two days away, my DH birthday in 10 days, and a family trip coming up, I will admit that wrath is often closer than anything else.

Yet, the wisdom written centuries ago by Jesus's brother is just as true today. My family relationships would be much better if I took the time to hear what people are trying to say, instead of jumping to conclusions. My soul would be at peace if I took the time to speak only after thinking and listening. 

As the holidays draw near...whichever holidays you celebrate...I encourage you to join me in being slow to speak and anger, while being swift in really hearing (listening) to others. It just might make our holidays more enjoyable.

Happy Communicating!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Lessons in Truth

Better is a dry morsel with quietness
Than a house full of feasting with strife.
Proverbs 17:1

Quietness...Strife. Which will you choose this day?
One may accompany rough and austere times, but love and peace prevail.
The other may accompany times of plenty, but quarreling and contentiousness prevail.

When we know God and His Son, Jesus Christ, we can choose quietness, even if it comes with a dry morsel. We know that in the end, we will have the feast.

At yoursuccessfulfamily, I try to include personal examples so you can see that what I tell you about is real, not just some objective textbook drudgery. I try to include lessons learned to help you avoid some pitfalls.

Today's Lesson in Truth hits home. I've tried strife and quietness with my family in the last week. And as always, the Bible is correct. I'll take that dry morsel any time. And I think my family is glad for that.

How about you?


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Friends and Life

So, it occurred to me the other day that I'm a soccer mom. I don't say that with all the societal connotations. I simply have a son who plays soccer through his school and I sit and watch twice a week for practice. There are three of us who actually leave our car and chat while our children play.

We three moms are all at different places in our lives. While we have children of similar ages, our adult interests vary some. One of my newfound friends commented that the other mom and I are supermoms. I was quick to point out that she does so much that we don't do. We all make great choices for our own lives and the lives of our children.

That's my message to you today. Don't think too much about what other moms are doing. Do what YOU are called to do. That's your responsibility. I have a dear friend who home schools four children under seven years old, while being strong in her faith and having a clean, beautiful house. I'm truly not sure how she does this. Yet, I am not her. I have different gifts and challenges. I use them in the ways I've been called.

As you and your friends communicate this week, remember it's okay to support her and still be true to who you are. There's no need for comparisons, envy, or judgment - just supermoms loving each other

Happy Communicating~

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Where Do You Come From?

This might seem like a strange question. But the family you grew up in plays a HUGE role in how you behave in your family now. This phenomenon is called "Family of Origin Influences." Each of us leaves the home we are raised in with a set of conscious and unconscious ways of relating to others based on our family of origin.

Our views of gender roles, themes, boundaries, play, stress, relaxation, conflict, coping with loss, religion's role, ethnic patters...all of these are influenced by where we come from. By knowing where we have come from - the good, the bad, and the ugly - we can understand why we do what we do.

Here's an example. Like most moms, I'm swamped by all that there is to do around my house. With two little ones and a husband I feel like I'm constantly cleaning up after someone. Some days the mountain of work bothers me more than others. Today it was really getting to me. After getting not nearly enough done around the house, DS2 and I went to pick up Big Brother.

Now, all week we've had plans after school. So I wanted today to be a quiet day at home (translated, they play nicely while I get some work done around the house). My boys, however, had a different plan. :-) They wanted to ride bikes in our cul-de-sac. What's a mom to do?

I decided to sit outside with the boys, a cup of iced coffee, a book, and our favorite radio station. My boys had a  blast. They drew with sidewalk chalk, used their tools to break up wood, and rode scooters and bikes around the circle. I sat there watching their joy at having a long time to just play outside. I also thought about the mess inside. And I remembered the post for today. I realized that some day my children may choose to play with their children simply because I took the time to play instead of work. I also found that the house didn't seem like such a big deal after relaxing with the kids for a while. That's a big benefit...and a lesson I'm thrilled to have them take with them when they eventually leave home.

Happy Communicating!