General

Happy Day

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Someone asked me the other day what my favorite color is.  And I didn’t know! I used to say periwinkle.  I do love that subtle, dreamy color!  But as I thought about it, now, I’m in love with a color I cannot really name.  It’s deep and rich and pink and peach and almost copper-ish.  Can you imagine it?

What is your favorite color? What is your favorite book?  Movie? Game? Vacation? Music? I’d encourage you to think about those questions and really answer them.

Then, consider what helps you to feel pampered.  What would you buy or make or do or schedule into your day that would give you that “drenched in self care” feeling?

Maybe a list of these things hanging in full view would be a motivation to you and possibly inspiration to your loved ones to help you make some of these self-care items happen!

We attract others to us when we care for ourselves. This is one of our feminine gifts. Instead of chasing people down, our children, our spouse maybe even friends or colleagues, we can concentrate on relaxing, accepting what is and finding our happy thoughts! Who doesn’t want to be around someone in that state of being?

On the other hand, who wants to be around tight, stressed, edgy energy that may snap at any moment? (I’ve been there a-plenty, and maybe you can relate, but we can, little by little shift things up!)

Want to test this out?  If you find, or already know that this principle of drawing others to us is a truth, please comment and share your discoveries!

I wish you a wonderful week ahead.  May you have the strength and courage to continue to move forward, even if it is by tiny baby steps.

God bless us all.

Love,

Jacque

Remembering

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I remember those days of overwhelm. Of not much sleep. Of foggy mornings. Of tears of joy coming to my eyes when I really looked at my children. At their innocence. Of fluffy bedheads. Of trips to the library; the stacks of picture books I think I enjoyed as much as anyone. Of feeling content to have my kids in the car headed home, hearing their curious thoughts about the world. Of wanting to freeze time, then speed it up on the difficult days! Of wondering if my children would survive each other. And if they could survive without each other. Of friends coming and going. Of meals and meals and meals and meals.  Of simple pleasures. Of being cuddled on the couch reading together. Of musicals. Of band practice. Of lessons and teachers and notes and schedules. Of jump ropes and roller blades. Of tea parties and Halloween costumes. Of sewing for Christmas.  Of sometimes pushing too hard. Of clinging to my journal. Of drinking in encouragement and strength from lessons and leaders from church. Of instructive dreams. Of binding myself to God in pleading prayer, at times pounding on heaven’s door in distress and sometimes approaching in joy. Of receiving answers, soft and powerful that let me know things would be ok. Of having the Word jump off the page to correct my thinking, moving me, lovingly urging me to change. Of celebrations. Of goodbyes. Of letters. Of essays. Of music theory and practicing, practicing, practicing. Of dances and dresses. Of ties and tuxedos. Of courtships. Of weddings. Of pregnancy’s and surgeries. Of baby smiles. Of joy and joy and joy….

I believe that the judgment day will be full of visual evidences of what we truly wanted.  And the revelation of how grace met us and bridged the gaps between what was and what we hoped and searched and worked to bring about.  And how the ripple of our heart’s desire went out and didn’t ever stop….

Slow it down to here and now.  Feel it.  Laugh and cry.  Taste it.  Hold it.  Believe and hope.  Get help when you can’t do it alone.  Turn off the virtual world.  Look at the sky. Sometimes let the wind blow your stresses away.

 

BONUS!

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Years ago, I went to a week long educational event, where you could choose from an array of classes on everything from parenting to the Middle East, and attend as many as you could squeeze in from 8:00-7:00.  I loved it! And I went for several years each summer, hungry to learn more.

After a few years, I would come home and type up my notes and do my best to apply what I had learned.  It was a great experience for me and I believe my home was greatly benefited by that opportunity.

One of the classes I attended on several occasions was a parenting class taught by a man named James Jones.  As I listened to him, I heard him call me out on the ways that my thinking was unclear, the ways that I was confused in knowing what was good parenting and what behavior of mine was an attempt to quench the guilt I felt for my parenting mistakes and the cover-up of my own disconnectedness.

He corrected me as I sat in a group of sometimes hundreds of people (probably all getting a clue like I felt I was) and yet I never felt put down or discouraged.  I think that maybe that is because Dr. Jones tells you about his own journey in parenting that led him through a maze of frustrations, of hitting brick walls, of having his confidence shattered and of the great ah ha’s he had that were humbling and extremely valuable.

Then, several years ago I ran into him.  I was grateful for the opportunity to thank him for the profound ways that he had helped me and my family.  And I asked him how I could get my hands on some of his books that had gone out of print, to share with my clients!

I was amazed when he told me that he had decided that he would like to put all of his work, that is multiple books and audio recordings of books and classes that he has taught, online somehow and grant them to the public domain so that anyone could download them and have them for free!

He said that I could call him in a few months and see how things were going with that project, and so I did.  I think we talked every six months or so for a couple of years.  And then this week, after someone asked me a question that I thought his work could answer, I tried to call him again to see what had happened thus far with his idea.  And all four numbers that I could find for him said they were disconnected.

Then almost at the same moment, I saw the post of a friend who had tagged a parenting blog with a note to herself to read it later…and as I looked at it I saw that it was labeled James Jones parenting!

I am so happy to report that when you visit http://www.jamesjonesparenting.weebly.com, you will find an invaluable resource for your family!  I am in amazement at the generosity of the Jones family and of their efforts to make a lifetime of work and learning available to anyone and everyone! For free!  At the touch of a button!

So to Dr. Jones and his family, I say a very big and heartfelt THANK YOU!  And to you readers I say, if you are a parent, I encourage you not to delay!  Check out the site and download these books and audio classes and books.  They will be a blessing to you and to your children.  They may even change the course of  eternity.

Blessings to you and your family.

Jacque

P.S. Thank you Bree for your timely post!  xo

Psalms 46:10

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I offer you a reminder of this cool, deep water. I hope you can take a moment, close your eyes, quiet your mind and drink it in.

“Be still, and know that I am God.”

Love and blessings to you wherever you are on your journey today.

Love,

Jacque

Letting Go

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What if….

What if life is a long time and you will not miss out on a thing when it comes right down to it?

What if what you are doing right now is so important and so unique to you that it truly trumps any other major pursuits at the moment?

What if there will come a day when you will bless the things that are challenging you now?

What if you are actually, really and truly, never alone?

What if your “wings” are getting stronger with each push against the “egg” you are trying to break?

What if there are more rewards, more smiles, more sighs, more laughter, more adventure in the days ahead than you have ever imagined?

What if right now, you could let go of your pain, your worry and your grief and it would be ok?

What if you went to a quiet place and asked yourself what can I do next to lighten my load and then you acted on the answer?

What if you are lovable and kind and gracious and lovely just the way you are today?

What if….?

I pray you will do what is necessary to care for yourself today and nurture the dream you have for tomorrow!

May your journey be bright and true!

Love,

Jacque