Mothering

Inspiration on parenting

Living Things

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What are the important things in your life that require constant nourishment?

Your children?

Your pets?

Houseplants and gardens?

What about the intangible things? Those living things that require incredible amounts of energy and focus…

Your marriage relationship. Your relationship with your children, your parents, your siblings, your friends. Your health. Your faith. Your vision. Your goals.

These other living things are most worthy of our attention. Our deliberate maintenance, fostering connection and care. Who have you become because of your experiences with your family? What have you come to know through your experiences with God? When is His voice most clear to you? Do you keep those things ever before your face and on your heart? Do you record your most important thoughts and the inspiration you receive? Do you have bolstering declarations posted so that you can see them regularly to work on your beliefs and mindset every day?

Sometimes, I find myself thinking of these life-affirming blessings as common place; but then I’m reminded that they are the real sustenance of my life and should receive my greatest gratitude and efforts!

I hope you are well. I hope you will nourish, constantly nourish, your soul, your body, and then your loved ones and everyone and everything within your sphere of influence.

Much love to you!

Jacque

“Stand still…but first remember, remember the signs! Say them to yourself when you wake in the morning and when you lie down at night and when you wake in the middle of the night. Whatever strange things may happen to you, let nothing turn your mind from following the signs. And secondly, I give you a warning: here on the mountain, I have spoken to you clearly. I will not often do so down in Narnia. Here on the mountain, the air is clear and your mind is clear. As you drop down into Narnia the air will thicken. Take great care that it does not confuse your mind. And the signs which you have learned here will not look at all like you expect them to look when you meet them there.
That is why it is so important to know them by heart; and pay no attention to appearances. Remember the signs and believe the signs; nothing else matters. And now Daughter of Eve, farewell.”  The Silver Chair, C.S. Lewis

Let’s Look Around

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What’s going on in your world today? I hope you are well!

Do you ever get so focused in on the challenges you are trying to solve that they actually eclipse everything else that is going right?

Here are a few questions to add a little perspective.

Do you have water to drink?

Do you have a warm place to sleep?

Are you able to sit next to your child?

Can you spend time reading together?

Do you have food to eat?

Do you have electricity and hot water? {Oh, blessed hot water!}

Do you have a coat to wear this winter?

Do you have supportive relationships in your life?

Say yes to most of these questions and wow, what a wonderful life!

I hope you are keeping perspective. When the challenges we have get too close and obstruct our vision, we need to push them out, away from such close inspection for a little while, and look around at all that is working well, and all the ways we are blessed.

And sometimes that is difficult to do.

But we can get better at balancing our perspective. Heaven help us to balance better everyday!

Love and thanks to you for all you are doing to add kindness and love to our world. You’re the best!

Jacque

P.S. {This post was inspired by a film I saw about a volunteer program that gives inmates the opportunity to record themselves reading and singing for their children to listen to at home. It rips at my heart to think of being away from my loved ones in that way. Particularly if it meant being separated from my children! What a luxury it is to be together. How free and wealthy we are!}

Shhh!

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This month in the 7 Steps to Family Wellness seminar, we are working on turning down the emotional noise in our environment and later we’ll be working on our schedules.

That means that we are going room by room through our homes and taking notes about trouble spots. What clutter is filling the corners? What projects are unfinished? What cupboards or closets scream at us when we open the door?

This kind of “noise” in our homes is like an emotional flashing light trying to get our attention. But when those flashing lights have been blinking for too long, our minds acclimate to them and even though they may still be blinking, we can’t hear the sound. At least not in our consciousness. But the weight and noise is there under the surface and is taking up emotional energy that could be used elsewhere more effectively! 

Hence the home walk-through with a paper and pencil. Just for awareness sake.

Once we see again what we may have been trying to ignore, for as many reasons as there are people, we can make simple plans to take baby steps toward creating the peaceful, creative spaces that will serve our families better.

Would you like to join us in this assignment?

Here’s how:
Take an inventory of each room and storage space.
Make simple notes on what could be done to improve each area.
Add larger projects to your vision board.
Make a priority list for small items and start today to put out the noise.

My first item was straightening the top shelf of my clothes closet.

It has been bugging me, which is ironic because it ended up only taking about ten minutes to get things pulled out, sorted, and what I wanted to keep put back. Aaah, no more noise there!

Oftentimes, when it gets right down to it, many of the things that irritate us can be remedied with a few minutes of concerted effort. {Then we wonder why we put up with the mess for so long!}

Tomorrow the bathroom cupboard. {Most likely another ten minutes.}

For my vision board, I’ll add the bigger projects of painting doors and finishing the linen closet in the basement.

What is bothering you?

Will you join us in this step, and work on putting out the proverbial noise in your home?

Love,
Jacque

P.S. If you come along with the group, please remember that simple, small steps forward mean progress! Please don’t allow yourself to become overwhelmed and shut-down your creative juices! I know from sad experience, and I’ll bet you may know too that overwhelm can lead to frustration and unkind expectations of yourself and your family members. Please go simply and kindly, showing compassion for yourself and others as you do your best to improve your family’s home environment. Easy does it.

Unwind on Purpose

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Just a reminder-

Taking care of oneself is productive.

Maybe even more productive than most things that we think are worthy of our time.

Without our humor, our health and flexibility, we can’t do the things we dream of doing or just those things we want to get done.

Patience is involved right? When you know you need to spend precious time unwinding and decompressing, taking the time to do that may mean pushing back a project or other responsibility that is pressing us for attention.

It may also mean some clear boundaries with those we love. Is it time for a date night with your spouse? Is it time for you to have an hour to think and relax so that you can keep going?

Filling our self-care cup pays dividends over and over and over again. I know this. You know this. Hopefully we will get better and better at taking care of ourselves until self-nurture has become a firm pattern in the tapestry of our lives!

I hope your cup is brimming over.

Love,
Jacque

P.S. The other thing we know is that our daughters are watching! Heaven help us!

 

Be Here Now!

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Don’t wait until everything is in place to breathe!

Or for your to-do list to be crossed-off. {Can a few baby steps toward having your long-term projects be done and doing your daily chores as you go along, count it as productive? Because any movement forward is progress!}

Or wait for a sunnier day!

Use your courage, vision, kindness, wisdom, patience and mostly your love to connect with your family today!

They need your unique love and your smiling acceptance.

Open your arms. Open your heart. Breathe in deeply, let your shoulders relax and smile.

Today is what we have. Tomorrow will have cares of it’s own.

“Now is the time to seize the day!”

Love,
Jacque

“When the first child laughed for the first time, the laugh broke into a thousand pieces and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies.” Hook