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Sunday, January 8, 2012

twenty-twelve

CHRISTMAS EVE, 2011.
hello friends. it's been a refreshing few weeks and hope it's been the same for you and your home.  this time of year often conjures up a lot of emotion.  whether it's thankfulness for your family, or sadness for the lack of it, gathering around a table with those you love or drinking their memories away.  i was so shocked at the full capacity, (at least in looking at the parking lots) of many bars in the area on Christmas eve.  we passed a few on our way to different gatherings and i was reminded again at how many people are lonely, not just during the holiday season, but especially then. and not that going to a bar makes you lonely, but i'm thinking that if given a choice, spending Christmas eve at the local bar wouldn't be on the top of your priority list.  i don't know. i know nothing of true suffering, internally or externally.  and sometimes that really bothers me.  how "easy" my life seems.  how lovely my family is, the Peace in my heart and the beauty of my husband's great love.  i hesitate to call them blessings because it somehow seems that those without these things aren't "blessed" and that's not true at all.  perhaps they are gifts.  but even that sounds unfair.  regardless of the perfect "name" given to these beauties in my world, i am so grateful.  i am stirred again to embrace, be present, recognize and love what is before me. 

CHRISTMAS EVE, 2011.

deep way to start off. sorry about that!  it's quiet in our home this saturday afternoon, paisley is sleeping and the boys are at their favorite home, (other then our own).....it's about thirty steps from here and full of nothin' but peace and love and good food. jake is out cutting wood for our fireplace.  somehow he managed to find and load about 40 tree trunks onto his trailer!  often i just sit back and watch in amazement at the stuff he gets done.  he's not human.  before i sat to write this post i was watching him out the kitchen window.  he has this cute little thing he does with his lips when he's working, pursing them together and squinting his brow in concentration.  i've never met a person who works like he does.  and loves it at that.  not going to pretend that i always appreciate or value that hard work.  sometimes i just want him to sit down and put his feet up. but alas, he is a visionary, seeing what is not there and longing to make it happen!  one of my first memories of him was watching him carry shingles up a ladder, balancing them on his back with one hand and climbing the ladder with the other.  i was amazed then and it hasn't stopped since. 
FIRST CHRISTMAS IN HER NEW HOME.
we received a christmas letter from my cousin.  at the end of her letter she had this quote and i thought it was lovely: 

 "only those who number their days aright gain wise hearts.  only they become God's sages: those calm, unhurried people who live in each moment fully, savoring simple things....unafraid of lifes' inevitable surprises and reverses, adaptive to change, yet not chasing after it...." 
~Mark Buchanan from "The Rest of God"~ 

HEY, LET'S START THIS YEAR OFF RIGHT, GRAMMIE'S STRAWBERRY PIE!
 what a way to begin the new year, a desire put into words. to live a life of calm, (which sometimes seems nearly impossible when the kids are fighting and "at" each other or when relationships, situations in your world are stormy).  to be adaptive to change, (not necessarily to the change taking place around me, but moreso IN me). to savor, (to not be annoyed at the little things that need attention in life, not speaking of my children, but of the things they "create", the leftovers of imagination, the dishes after woofing a meal, the clothing after living a day).
"CHITTY-CHITTY, BANG-BANG" in the living room.  
yesterday i came upon this blog post and it resonated so deeply and made me laugh too because it's the truth.  you know it's happened to you, (if you're a mother of small children).  the dear old lady at the store puts her hand over her heart and sweetly tells you to enjoy these days as a young mother because they go so fast, (and then you kinda want to run over her feet with the cart).  well, this awesome blog post speaks right into that.....and it's a doozy.

WE BRING IN THE NEW YEAR EACH YEAR with our friends Wendell and MaryJo.
HERE THE KIDS ARE WITH THEIR OJ TOAST AT 12:01am, January 1st, 2012!
I'm 16 weeks pregnant now and my maternity bin the attic is calling my name!  Lovie is about the size of an avocado, starting to grow toenails and it's tiny heart is pumping 25 quarts of blood each day!!  After several attempts at finding the heartbeat early on, we finally heard it last week.  Thanks to our sweet midwife who stopped by unannounced several times just to put my heart at ease.  She was with us at each of our children's birth, such a special tradition.  As I lay on the couch hearing Lovie's heartbeat it brought tears of thankfulness to my heart, my troubled mind and my struggling soul.  Ever since finding out we were expecting again, I just felt prepared for another miscarriage.  I was very fearful the first few months and it really messed with my head and heart.  Forced a deeper place of trust.  After hearing the heartbeat I feel more relieved.  Although I certainly realize that this child is not truly ours at any point through its journey, from womb to grave. 
TIME FOR TEA. I LOVE HAVING A LITTLE GIRL IN THE HOUSE.
SUCH SWEETNESS, (with a little spice in there too)!
This may be the longest post ever, so thanks for sticking with me.  Just wanted to let you all know how much I've enjoyed our year together here in blogland!  Thank you specifically for your kindness in the early months of 2011 when we were walking through the valley of death.  Albeit, nothing like losing a child you have held in your arms or one you have raised by your side, yet nonetheless, a loss.  Your sweetness and compassion lifted my spirit and I thank you for it.  I am not certain what this year will look like as far as blogging.  Having clarity as to where my limited "free time" is spent is becoming increasingly important to me.  Isn't it amazing/scary how quickly the HOURS fly when you're online?  It's starting to be disconcerting to me.  So, for this month this post will be about it.  I'll be back the end of January and we'll chat then. 
THE CARRIAGE HOUSE AT NIGHT.  FEELS SO GOOD HAVING GRAMMIE NEAR.
An inward focus is what I'm feeling drawn to right now.  And as much as I enjoy my online time, it's becoming a little cage-like. In that I feel trapped by my own desires, my own online habits. There's a repositioning that needs to take place.  And I'm thinking it won't be happening "naturally", but more intentionally so.  Sometimes, thankfully, our eyes are opened to the unhealthy habits that have become second-nature.  Geesh, maybe I should save all this for another post.....(bless your heart if you're STILL reading)!
A LITTLE MESSAGE FROM THE BOYS.

 See you in a few weeks.....

"The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary
so that the necessary may speak."
~Hans Hofmann~

4 comments:

consume me... said...

Happy New Year...enjoy your break. Be well...

Sarah Gingrich said...

Dear friend, I'm so proud of you! May God minister to you as you stop and consider Him in a more intentional way. :)

AmyK said...

I recently read the blog post you linked to and had to chuckle. And I've had similar thoughts about the time spent (and often wasted) online. Time online can be like a black hole that just sucks you in. May you find it easier and easier to "unplug" when you know you need to!

the little cottage said...

I love it all, Janelle!
As a mother myself, time management can be one of the biggets challenges to know how to do it! I am certainly not there, but having little internet access the past three months has made me SO conscious of how much time can be so easily frittered away there, and how much free time I have when I am not on the computer very much! So I want to live and be more aware of those things, now that we're back in the Cottage...

Enjoy your restful January!
~clarita