Thursday, April 28, 2016

Enough ~


Desiring it, expecting it, recovering from it?
Hopefully the latter....
Today as I watched Ellery Grace (2) tackle the laundry with me, 
I noticed how very proud she was of every sock she folded.
She would fold them one a time, after all,  no need to pair them up when they
all appear to be the same sock.
(Point taken)

After every folded sock she would bring it to me, 
"Here Namaw" as she locked eyes with me in order for me to
 deem her work acceptable... 
Each time I would tell her what a great job she did and thanked her.

I often let them help with laundry, both love to put clothes in the washer
and both look forward to the moving into the next machine for drying,
and both love to fold.

Khloe, always wants to wipe down their little table after meals.
Each time asking me not to look until shes done.
I can almost read a chapter of a book in the time it takes her,
after all its a good 24" x 17" table.
She then calls me over to look at her work, again eyes lock for that approval
from me that its a great job, that its enough.
Today it was such a strong thought, the importance of teaching them how
to perform a task and letting them run with it.
After all, they KNOW HOW TO DO IT after one lesson right?
They do not want future help with it.
In their minds they've learned how, they can now replicate (used loosely)
what they've been taught therefore it should be
good enough.

Oh it's good enough! 
They really do want to help, they want to emulate
Namaw, Pa, Momma, Daddy, teacher etc....

(Reminder to those who are unaware, they ARE watching you.)

Of course I generally re fold many things, but they don't need to know that.
They need to know how great their effort was.
There will be times in the future to teach them how to fine tune their
folding skills :-)

Looking back I remember my sons learning at early ages to make their beds.
Often times it was comical when I checked on the progress.
It would have been far to obvious if I had re made them,
I allowed them to  become better bed makers when they wanted to,
and they did.

It fills my heart when my daughter in law sends me a photo of Khloe age 4, 
on a stool rinsing dishes to go into the dishwasher.
 I love that she allows her to do so.
No worry of the possibility that water that may end up on the floor, 
or of her getting her little shirt wet.
Its a teaching moment, it's her being like her Momma,
that is what pleases these little ones..... 
If you find you're the perfectionist...well,
don't put that on them or anyone else for that matter...
not an order, but a strong suggestion ;-).

I myself am a recovering household perfectionist
while in my 20's....thankful I didn't expect it of my family,
thankful I saw the amount of energy it sapped out of me, 
thankful I let it go!

I guess what got me today was just how important it is,
to teach them (because they do want to help), and
to allow them to get better at something at their own speed.
To teach them that their attempts at whatever
is good enough.
Again there is always time to further teach them...
just not as often as your praising them. :-)

We can teach responsibility, without expecting perfection.
We could stand to praise more often than we preach, or correct.

not expecting the perfect child, to do everything perfectly.
That doesn't translate well into their future years.
Do we really want them to feel they're never enough.... 

Let's face it Mary Poppins who was practically perfect in 
every way,  was alone when between jobs... and 
she was clearly interested in Burt.
Watching as an adult, though her job she found rewarding, 
and clearly loved children,
she was alone in her perfection.
(She did have plenty of good qualities, I'm not a Poppins hater..)

Perfectionism in real life, its hard and uncomfortable
 for this blogger to watch....
Have you ever watched a perfectionist and thought,
they are missing so many awesome moments by trying
to make it all so perfect. 

Let them be kids,
let them know their efforts are generally good enough.
In my opinion the perfectly behaved child, 
(though good behavior is important)
is not a happy child, but a bundle of stress inside over trying to please,
trying to be good enough
Trying to avoid the humiliation of being told that what they're
doing isn't acceptable, isn't good enough, every time they turn around.
Instead they have once again,
disappointed you....


Praise, such a great motivator to continue to do better and to please.
 Mom's and Dad's 
save that other stuff for the military to teach them,
 should they choose to enlist :-)

I was a fairly strict parent, but tried to let them know they were enough...
No claims of not making mistakes as a parent,
just an old Namaw that notices things about kids....
How I wish I worked for Chobani , the boss giving every employee
10 % of the company!
My guess is they'll  become even better employees because he noticed,
he saw their efforts and it was enough :-)

Its what echos in my heart today.....

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Young Mommas a Must Read ~

Jeane'  is a young Momma of 6, not a typo, 6. I am a big fan of her Mother's blog which is how I found Jeane'... I hope you love her blog as much as I do. How I wish I had a Jeane' to follow when my boys were little.  I've included her blog address should you choose to follow her. Thanks to Jeane' for allowing me to share!

Enjoy the read!!

For When There Are Hard Times in the Mother Hood

The morning you locked yourself in the powder bathroom because you could not trust your self-control to trump your anger at the raging child you love but really, really can't stand right now. You feel guilt as you feel vindication at the thought of dropping their angry self off at the side of the road and driving away....

The moment when you said "shut up" under your breath after their rage passed and they heard you and cried. You couldn't believe what a dark person you are to have let this slip and then seep into their heart. What a heel of a mom.

The time you fantasized about asking to borrow the rose colored glasses of the older lady at Target who told you to "enjoy these days" after your hour long struggle to keep your little beggars from springing out of the red cart so that you could throw them on the ground, crush them with your sneakered foot and hand them back to the nice woman while saying, "I think you forgot what life really looks like right now". 

The hour after your good man came home from a trip with you expecting him to  patiently take over the deafening circus and he lost his cool in the chaos and he isn't able to make the transition seamlessly. OR he comes home and all the rascallions suddenly turn into little obedient darlings and their father turn's into Mister Rodgers, beloved and adored. What the heck? Either way, you're peeved and he can't win.

Or maybe it's one of the many times you find yourself around other families, whose children listen the first time, don't throw food across the table and generally act like the civilized offspring of successful parents who have parented well. You try to interact and pretend your children do not need to be reigned in, but every five minutes you dart out of the conversational circle because it IS your monkey and it IS your circus, darn it! And you realize that maybe a total revamp of the training program you've been using is in dire need. 

Every scenario is different, because none of us or our landscapes look exactly the same.  Yet there are seasons in the Mother Hood when, if we choose to be honest, the inside of our tent looks eerily the same. I am here today without a shred of parenting advice because when you're knee deep in monkey crap, you really just don't want that before feeling understood. Here are three simple tools for survival I've found for when hard times set in:

1. You, specifically, were given this child/children on purpose.
You weren't a random choice. God doesn't have His fingers crossed, hoping he made a decent pairing. You've GOT THIS because He made you strong enough to handle the hard. Do not force yourself to be someone else. Ask God to break your vices and help hone the virtues. It likely will be a messy and unflattering process, but anything worthwhile usually is. And let your children know that you know you aren't perfect. Ask for forgiveness when needed and claim your loving, imperfect, God-inspired authority the rest of the time. The childhood your children are living are the only ones they know. I know I often project my insecurities about my inability to spend one-on-one time on them (each mother has her own worries), but they only know what they know, and they know they are loved by an imperfect mother. Trust God in all of this. He's got your back.

2. Be honest.
Several weeks ago, sitting in the waiting room of the play therapist I am taking one of my children to, I met the mama of another child who was there. We introduced ourselves and in no time, we couldn't talk fast enough, comparing notes of what we were dealing with. I realized more than anyone, I needed the therapy ...and her ability to absolutely relate with me was exactly what I needed. Neither of us gave advice or pretended to have nice, neat answers. But I am quite sure we both walked out of there feeling understood, with our frustrations eased by being validated. I haven't seen or talked with her since, but it was the shot of encouragement I needed right at that moment and thanked God for it. I also thank him for the close friends I can text/call in the moments when I feel I'm at the Crazy Train station, ready to be picked up and carried away forever. They let me say bad things and know 75% of it I do not mean. They don't try and give advice. They are simply there. And when you have that safety net, you cling to it and you return the favor as much as you possibly can. If you do not have this, make it your fervent prayer that God brings it to you. Friends and strangers who listen and understand are God's tangible hugs...but in order to receive them, one must be willing to be honest.

3. Breathe.
I know. This is pretty basic, but when I am stressed, I forget to breathe in deeply. Half the time, my shoulders are tensed up, hovering around my ears and at the sound of hidden candy wrappers being fondled in the pantry or the refrigerator door being opened for the twentieth time after I've given out plenty of snacks. Remembering (which I rarely do) to stop and take a few deep breaths helps me take pause. I know it's not always possible when you have really small children to lock yourself in your room or bathroom, but if you can (cribs! pack and plays! let them cry!), give yourself a time-out and just breath. Maybe sniff some lavendar or peppermint...or roll around in a vat of it. 
Just don't forget to come for some air. 
Somehow how, it helps.

As you can see, this is not a blog of ground-breaking answers, mainly because the author is still in the trenches herself. Besides, empathy is far weightier currency than answers when it comes to getting through hard times in the hood. 

One more thing. Feel free to borrow and repeat my mantra as often as you need to:

With love,

Wise, authentic Momma's who share, it's what echos from my heart today......

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Time Marches On ~

Seriously March is almost here?
I often wish I could slow the days down, 
am I alone in this thinking?

My Grands are growing up too fast!!
 Khloe shared with me last week,
" Namaw I will still love you when I get bigger."
Good to know.

Still in the midst of my three different Bible Studies,
Revelation, Hebrews and The Way of the Heart...
Though I am really enjoying each one of them, I look forward to April
 when I can resume only one Bible study.
Just keeps me very busy, yet I gain so much from each.

My little Khloe is 4 months from being a 5 year old (uggh)
She started T-Ball a week ago, stinkin cute to watch!

Ellery Grace, her sister's biggest fan....

We've had some beautiful 80 degree weather,
though I'm not really ready for it to be summer.
I'm still praying for more rain...

These two keep me moving and I'm thankful for that...

Looking forward to the "Core Four" cousin trip in March!
This year its a 4 day cruise to Catalina Island and Ensenada Mexico, 
as always, we will be in search of the perfect Margarita. :-)

Love checking in on my blogger family,
hope to be back to blogging more often in the next couple months.

It's what echos from my heart today....

Friday, January 22, 2016

A Letter and a Prayer ~

Stopping by blog land before January is completely behind me!

I was listening to a Podcast while trying to forget I was at a gym, it's just something that works for me :-)
The speaker made several excellent points but two stood out in my mind.

The first was if you were to receive a written letter from Jesus what do you suppose it would say?

Would he be pleased with how your living your life?

Would he feel he is your 1st priority?

Would he be pleased with the amount of time you spend with him?

How would he feel about the fact you put your children before your spouse?

Speaking of, how are you treating your spouse? Is it respectful?  You do know our children generally follow the example that you set for them..... (sit with that a minute).

Do you speak to your parents with respect (deserved or not)?

Are you in a regular habit of attending church, small group, any type of fellowship with other believers?

Are you growing in your knowledge of His Word, the Bible?

How much time do you actually spend with him daily? Turns out we can make time....forfeit some of that time on our cell phones, Facebook or television....just a few ideas.... 

Are you trusting Him in every situation, or are you trusting Him only when you need something?  
You know, in a medical emergency or to get you out of a problem you created? Are you consistent in your need of him? Or is it the only time you're really willing to spend with him?

Are you accountable to others when you are wrong? Do you freely ask for forgiveness, or wait and hope they forget your wrong doing?

Are we caring for our bodies, our physical health?

Are you loving others, are you kind to strangers, the clerk in the store, the waitress etc.....

Are you judging others rather than focusing on bettering yourself??

These questions I found can go on and on.....

So, upon hearing the question, "what would He say," I had to think, yes, what might he say to me?
 I have work to do.....

The other stand out point was regarding prayer.

How do you pray? Is it simple Dear God, thank you for this day,  help me get rest tonight, keep my kids safe and healthy....Amen
Now think of it this way..Would your simple prayer remain the same?..If, he were sitting beside you how would you speak with him? Would you be in total awe of his presence, of all he's done for you? Would that prayer be more involved and intimate? Wouldn't you just be pouring out thanks??

So, yep I have work to do...

Ask yourself questions that come to your mind....

Just popped in to share yet more of what I've been pondering :-)

Wishing you God's best!!

It's what echos from my heart today.....

Sunday, January 3, 2016

What do you Ponder?

So for grins I love to use the word, ponder.
It just sounds like less effort than, think about.
There are certain things that occur that make me stop for a moment and

There is the laundry ponder...
Almost weekly as I'm folding sheets, "where is that fourth pillowcase?"
I have two sets of white sheets for my bed with a total of 4 pillow cases.
Months ago I came up short a pillow case....drat!
I've looked high and low, it's no where to be found.
It's more annoying than the occasional missing sock, 
I have more than enough socks....
I'm trying to shake the memory of the missing pillowcase,
I don't understand why it continues to puzzle me to the extreme.
It's like trying to shake gum off the bottom of a shoe, it won't budge.

Then there's the Pinterest Ponder........
I will go on pinterest about once a month to see whats new.
I end up pinning almost every post on, how to have thin thighs, how 
to get rid of back fat, how to shed the spare tire on what used to resemble a 
stomach, how to loose whatever all that is that hangs off my arms.!
All with good intentions of doing something about "it."
Once I've claimed 15 or so of the fat facts....
in an instant I find myself pinning dessert recipes, meals with cheese and/or butter
as main ingredients.....with an occasional "low cal" dish for good measure,really?

Just today my cousin Dona Dee shared a "Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake" 
on Facebook. I responded with my usual response to a photo of future fat on my body, 

Just as I finished typing the last paragraph, my Facebook alerted me to a new post.
My daughter in law Katie just posted a photo of said Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake!

Where have you been all my life?!
Get the recipe from Oh My God Chocolate Desserts.
It must be a sign!
Raspberry's will be added to the shopping list...
After it's made and I've enjoyed every bite,
I  will move on to,
 What in the Heck were you thinking, form of pondering.....
It's what echos from my heart today.....
good intentions gone astray, again.
....and your welcome for including the recipe.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Renewal ~

First, a few remnants of Christmas...

Gift the girls made for Mommy and Daddy

Proud of the Happy Birthday Jesus cake they made.

Such fun watching the kids and spending the day with extended family!

Happy New Year!

Just can't believe we are in 2016 already, it seems not that long ago
we were waiting to see what 2000 would bring!

It's that time of year many set or reset goals, make resolutions, and a very popular
one, join a gym!

Do you all find your days become very routine?
After many days of  life with routine, we sometimes stop noticing all that
 God has put before us that will bring us joy. 
 Be it a  beautiful sunset, vibrant landscapes or
for me, the peace the beautiful Pacific ocean provides.
We get caught up in life sometimes and we begin to miss all the gifts provided us.
Some routines are healthy, such as exercise, healthy diets etc... 
Time spent with God for example will always remain part of my routine.
Without it, life is so void of true contentment.
For me that desire for contentment is something I know only God can truly satisfy in me.
Bottom line, I am limiting the "routine" stuff as much as possible...

Though it once was,
 it's not the money to be made, the bigger house, its not possessions period.
I guess because I've tried living both ways I can say, living a life that is God centered,
 fulfills my hearts true desires and it's where I find myself content.

We all find ourselves in tough circumstances,
but in the midst of those circumstances we don't need to lose sight
 of all the good God has for us.
If we lose sight of that, we likely lose sight of joy.

There is always something we can find joy in.
For me it's a grandchild's sweet face, or one of our kids stopping by...
For me it's being surrounded by a blue sky and lots of trees.
They all remain, regardless of my circumstance.

My hope is to shake up this new year and purpose to make each
day different than the last. Challenging myself to do so!

Looking forward to what the new year holds.
I plan to enter into it refreshed, and ready for renewal to take place!
Every year I have a word for the hasn't come to me just yet, 
and like every year, I anxiously wait for it to become clear.

May you each enter in to the New Year with a sense of renewal and refreshment!
Look for the joy, it's there!
It's what echos from my heart today.....

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas ~

Hope this post finds you totally prepared for Christmas!
Wonder how many are 100% prepared? 
Gifts are finally wrapped here, been to the market in preparation for  our 
Christmas Eve dinner, and ready to tidy up the house.

I wanted to wish all of my fellow bloggers a Merry Christmas !
Praying for all who will travel to arrive at your destinations safely.

I had the best intentions of getting all my Christmas cards out, just never got them all done.

So forgive me those who haven't received one..
Next year!

We have been having cool weather, highs in the 50's many days, evenings high 20's low 30's...
that means I may actually get to wear all my turtleneck sweaters at last! 
We had several days of rain which I'm also loving, not just because we need it but 
because it's just so nice to see again!!

I wanted to share video from Khloe's Sunday School performance
They sang, Go Tell it On The Mountain.
It was adorable, a couple of joyful tears were shed...

Hope you enjoy it even a fraction of what I have :-)

All the wonder of Christmas, 
It's what echos from my heart today!