Reflections

Once June hits around here, we have a birthday/anniversary/special occasion at least monthly for several months, which is pretty cool. 🙂 My birthday is coming up next month, and I have been thinking about the emotional growth spurt that I experienced recently. One morning this week, before I got out of bed, I had a phrase from one of the birthday songs the children of our church sing to one another by Barbara McConochie: “one year older and wiser, too.”

Though wisdom might have evaded me as a child, I have considered moments from this summer which have brought me insight and strength. I have been taught in ways that I would not have imagined possible on subjects as diverse as faith or screenwriting, as connected as family is to friends. I have experienced moments of ease as well as moments of pain, moments of heartache and moments of triumph. Each day, I have been sustained by those around me and a power beyond my own.

What have I learned?

  • I am stronger, more capable, more powerful than I knew before this moment.
  • My family has the capacity to strengthen, bless, and uplift.
  • I have a voice to sing.
  • Life is filled with blessings, even as we struggle.
  • Struggling helps us (if we let it).
  • Life is good.
  • Gratitude each day is crucial.
  • I can be happy, no matter what goes on around me.
  • Prayer changes situations, hearts, minds.
  • As we work together to support each other, we’ve got this.

Till next time. xoxo

Green Beans and Brownie Sundaes

We typically spend one Sunday each month in fasting and prayer accompanied by donating an offering equal to the amount of the cost of the two meals (or more generously, when possible) to help those in need.  Last Sunday was such a day, and because of fasting and the schedule of the day, we ate just before 5 p.m.  Not wanting to prepare another big meal after–and smelling the smell of my kiddos’ brownies baking in the oven–gave me the idea of having brownie sundaes for “dinner” (which typically happens for us between 5:30-6 p.m.).

The kiddos crowded around the counter where we scooped warm brownies into bowls, topped them with scoops of vanilla ice cream and drizzled over dark chocolate syrup.  YUM.  My mouth is watering as I type.  They were pretty delicious and kinda looked like this:


photo credit

As we joked over the idea of having dessert for dinner, one of my (hesitant vegetable-eating) children piped up, “Maybe we should have green beans for dessert!”

We all chuckled at the thought until my (green-bean-loving) child headed to the freezer and proceeded to hand me a bag of frozen green beans.

I explained that we use the frozen green beans mainly for her favorite (Olive Garden) minestrone soup recipe, but that she was welcome to find a can of beans in the cabinet.  She headed there and promptly removed two cans and placed them on the counter.

🙂

I helped her heat one can at a time, and she relished in the yummy, salty, mushy, green bean experience.


photo credit

It.  Was.  Fantastic.

The Product of NaNoWriMo 2012

As promised, I am recording for posterity (and my lovely blog readers) the lessons I have learned over the past weeks since I made a spontaneous decision to enter NaNoWriMo 2012.  (I was serious blogging about whether or not to do it…having done no outlining or anything…and just did it on a whim thanks to the encouragement of a few lovely voices!…& I thank you sincerely Marissa and Darcy!)  Here we go, in no particular order…:

  • Prayer works.  (Not that I didn’t know this prior to Nov. 1, 2012; it was just reaffirmed to me….)
  • Productivity produces energy.
  • Support from those you love is vital for success!
  • Goals can be accomplished…(and a lot more, too!).
  • I CAN WRITE!!!!!
  • Being purely creative is energizing.
  • My family, friends (& I) love me!
  • Even with road blocks (scheduling, sickness, holidays, etc.)~keep moving forward….! (See Meet the Robinsons for more info on this topic.)
  • God is aware of me and loves me!
  • I HAVE A VOICE (and an important one, at that)!
  • I can cultivate creativity…and a writing mood.
  • Breaks are important.  (I took every Sunday off…and a few other Thursdays sprinkled in the month, as well.)
  • When all else fails, have a dance party with the kiddos (…or with friends…or by yourself…)!
  • Have munchies around always.  (I had a Swiss Cake Roll emergency…luckily for me, I did have some left-over Double Stuf Oreos which satisfied the chocolate/creamy craving.)  🙂
  • Buy back your kids’ Halloween candy and use it for NaNoWriMo snacks…and to last until NaNoWriMo is over and you start making Christmas candy.
  • Spotify created great mood music when I needed it…and was a great resource for the karaoke scene I wrote.
  • You can always edit later.

In the past few days, I have listened to some of the songs on Alicia Keys’ new album–and the chorus and several lines of this song resonate with me.  I do feel like a “Brand New Me.”

The only time I recently felt this kind of growth and accomplishment is when I worked and trained for (& completed) a half-marathon with a dear friend of mine…something about measurable success.  Hopefully, though, I will write more novels than the number of races I’ve run…! 🙂

Hugs!

When the going gets tough…

So, last night I was at a loss…or lost…or something…completely not myself.  Without going into detail, let’s just say my world was not rocking along smoothly.  Sure, I had 47,455 words toward my NaNoWriMo goal, and everyone was clothed…well, pretty much everyone since the preschooler removes his shirt often lately in the name of being the Hulk…and we fed everyone…but the clutter of the house and the weight of two weeks of an unhealthy household and people being reinfected (plus little to no sleep the night before) was hurting my heart…not to mention my head.  When I’m tired, I find that my will to be positive is depleted to almost nothing…you?

Anyway, right before I went to bed, I sent a post out to my dear Facebook friends asking for some prayers (since we were doing pretty much all we could of ourselves and needed strength we didn’t possess).  Several people commented and liked the post…even within moments…and the positive energy sent in our behalf brought a lighter feeling to our home and healthier feelings here.

I wonder why I didn’t ask sooner.

Sometimes I wait until I am at the end of my rope to ask for help.  Why is that?  I’m not sure, but I’m thinking about it today….  I know that I don’t like to bother people.  I also know that I feel like what happens is my responsibility and that I should take care of whatever it is.  And, I’m sure other reasons exist.  I will keep pondering….

This song has been running through my head today, though, as I have thought of how awesome I feel when I ask for help from others and they come running.

Just seeing the positive comments from friends has helped me feel that I am not alone in the universe…that people love me…and that together we can get through this life (and enjoy our time here, as well)!

Asking for help empowered others to offer positive energy that I desperately needed.  And, I imagine their burdens were made a little lighter, as well.  🙂

And now, I’m off to more writing and word counting…2 days left of November…and NaNoWriMo…(which I will miss)!