Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Have To - OR - Able To

Do you ever have those days where you're bemoaning your to-do list before you ever set foot out of bed? You know the kind - "I have to do this" or "I have to do that." If you don't, then I applaud you because you are definitely a better person than I am.

Today wasn't necessarily one of those days, but it was cleaning day. And as I began gathering my supplies...

and occupying Mia with clutter-free activities (i.e., a TV show - I know, I know, shame on me), I remembered something I heard at a women's conference a few weeks ago.

What if, instead of focusing on the "I have to's," we focused on the "I am able to's?" (Lots of weird punctuation there - not sure if it's correct, but anyway.) So "I have to clean my house" turns into "I am able to clean my house because I am healthy and physically able." Or "I am able to clean my house because I have a house to clean which shouldn't be taken for granted these days."

As I dusted, vacuumed dog hair, cleaned toilets, vacuumed dog hair, mopped the floors, vacuumed dog hair, I kept mulling this thought over and over in my mind and began to apply it to other situations that frequently come about during my typical day.

I have to eat leftovers for dinner. ----> I am able to eat leftovers for dinner because I have good (not scrounged from a dumpster) food in the fridge to eat.

I have to take the boys to practice for the millionth time this week. ----> I am able to take the boys to practice because they are healthy and God has blessed them with athletic abilities. Or I am able to take the boys to practice because my minivan still runs and allows me to drive them where they need to go. (For those of you that know anything about my minivan this is a miracle in and of itself.)

Now I realize all of my examples are seemingly mundane tasks, but the sum of them makes up a lot of what I do (and what I feel God has called me to do) at this season of my life. So you can see how just changing a few simple words can make a huge impact on my daily outlook.

And just because my house only looks this clean for about an hour every two weeks, I thought I'd document it.

Colossians 3:23 - Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for man.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Summer List Recap

Remember the 'Summer List'? Wasn't it just yesterday when we came up with it?

Now that summer is theoretically over I thought it might be fun to recap what we accomplished. Remember, this was a no-limitations brainstorming session so some things didn't quite happen this summer. But hey, there's always next year!

1) Bowling...let me just say that there are no pro-bowlers among us.

2) Tie-dye t-shirts...exploring our crafty side.

3 & 4) Block party and homemade ice cream...we killed two birds with one stone on this one. Had our 'last hurrah' neighborhood gathering on Labor Day and made homemade Cheerwine ice cream - not so good in my book, but it got eaten by others.

5) Fishing...technically this was from Memorial Day. But that's the beginning of summer, right?

6) Shaving cream entertainment, but they LOOOOVVVEEDD it.

7) Water balloon fight...OK, I'm seeing a theme here. But we're really not violent people.

8) Baseball game...Sorry no pics here. Mia and I bailed on this one because it was 100 degrees outside. But the boys and Tim caught a Durham Bulls game.

9) of my favs.

10) Washington, D.C...this one was really good too. Although I missed my baby terribly while we were gone.

11) 5K...we picked the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. A very moving experience. Just look at all those people.

12) Gym...No pics on this one for sure. But I did manage to get several workouts in thanks to my WONDERFUL baby sitters.

13) Blog...This one was another one of my items, obviously. But we see how well that turned out. But hey, it's fall and I'm determined to make a new start!

14) IronKids Triathlon...not for the faint of heart. My very athletic and physically fit boys hurt BAD after this one.

15) Pool...of course we did this one. It's a summer staple around here (but with 3 kids, well OK, with one toddler, it was difficult to get photos.)

16) Asheville...We spent some good quality time with the grandparents.

17) Krispy Kreme...thank goodness it's a long way from our house.

Not bad for us first timers. We had a great summer filled with lots of wonderful memories. I will definitely try this again next year - let's just hope the boys don't outgrow it too soon! (The thought of them actually outgrowing it ever makes me very sad - so let's just not think about that.)

Since we seem to be fairly successful with lists, maybe it's time for me to make a Fall Project To Do List. Better get started - the holidays will be here before we know it.

Here's to creating many more wonderful memories - no matter what time of year!