Weekend Links and Life Update {13}

Flowers and window

I give up. I had such big dreams of sitting down and writing multiple posts this week. I have three swimming around in my brain, as we speak. But alas, it appears we are nearing the end of the road with both the house-selling and the house-building. Thus, my days have been hijacked by various time-sucking activities. There was not a single hour I could devote to writing. Not-a-one.

This brings me great sadness.

As I write this, I’ve escaped to Panera Bread while the buyers and the home inspectors invade the premises to decide if my current home is fit for inhabitation. Thankfully, I thought to grab my lap-top on the way out so I could compose a brief update and some links, tucked between errand running and more errand running. Unfortunately, my computer refuses to connect to the Panera wifi. So, by the time you read this, it will be tomorrow. Sigh…

As I deep cleaned my house (again!) in preparation for the inspection, it occurred to me that this morning’s cleaning could very well be the VERY LAST TIME I clean that house. I’ve lived there almost eleven years. Assuming I cleaned weekly (on average) I have scrubbed those toilets and vacuumed those floors approximately 572 times. Add to that, the million deep cleanings since we put the house on the market (I exaggerate only slightly), and that’s a lot of elbow grease.

I’ve never gotten sentimental while scrubbing a toilet, but I did a little today. The good news is, I have FIVE sparkly new toilets at the new house, upon which I can pour all my misplaced toilet-affection.

In my head (which, I admit, is overrun with information and functioning on low capacity) I see myself blogging throughout the move. However, you and I both know I will be a ball of stress and will have nary a moment to sit down and pontificate about balance. Balance will be packed in boxes and placed on the moving truck.

I miss you, balance.

(I know there are people who love the whole house-building/house selling process. It’s safe to say, at this point, I’m not one of them.)

(It’s safe to say at this point, if I never move again as long as I live, I will be okay with that.)

(It’s safe to say, at this point, I think people who enjoy this process are freaks of nature–perhaps not even human.)

So, if the blog is void of new material temporarily while I transition to our new home, know that I’d rather be here, writing. And please pray for me and my overloaded brain and stress-ball nerves and the people in my family who need to endure them with me.

Bless you.

I Wish Someone Would Have Warned Me About These Big Feelings, by Jen Hatmaker. She always says what I think, but way funnier.

What Tools Do You Really Need to Chase Your Dream, by Donald Miller.  A simple reminder to pack light.

Late to School Again, by Kim at Mamma by the Bay. This one had me LOL-ing (literally…I laughed out loud) at the beginning and completely crying (CC-ing?) by the end. My favorite kind of post.

“Celebrities, strangers rally behind teen after ‘not one kid’ RSVPs for his birthday party” . Here is your feel-good-grab-your-tissues story of the week. As a mom of a 13 year old kid who has endured his share of bullying, I only wish I lived close enough to this sweet boy to show up at his 13th b-day party. Heart-warming.

7 Annoying Things People Say to Me Since I Started the Paleo Diet, by Sean Sullivan “When you attempt to go Paleo, you’re voluntarily giving yourself a gluten allergy, diabetes, and lactose intolerance. People who are anti-Paleo are focusing on all the stuff that you can’t eat. That’s not how to approach this. It’s about substitutions. You can’t eat peanut butter, so try almond butter. You can’t eat bread, so put your hamburger between two pieces of lettuce. Missing chocolate chip cookies? Have a handful of raw, unsalted almonds, and if you’re feeling extra naughty, salt them with the tears that are always streaming down your face. “  Funny, funny stuff.


Favorite Posts of All Time, 2010: Today When I Look in the Mirror

In celebration of seven years of blogging, I’m running my Favorite Posts of All Time, one for each year.

Welcome back to 2010.

The year began with my fellow blogging friend Lisa Smith receiving a devastating cancer diagnosis (as if there is any other kind?). This diagnosis, along with my realizing that life is short and precious and uncertain, was the fuel behind this post.

Lisa, I’m so thankful you survived. God bless you for inspiring me with your tenacity and faith.

I love you.

Original run date: January 29, 2010


Today when I look at my face, instead of leaning into the magnified, lighted mirror analyzing each pore, each scar, each blemish, each stray eyebrow and each new wrinkle I will thank God I can see…


I will marvel at the multiple colors inside my eyes, and how they seem to transform depending on the day, the mood, and the colors around them. I will thank God I have senses that allow me to smell my coffee, my pumpkin pie-scented candle and the sweet aroma of my children’s skin. I will remember with joy instead of regret, each day of my youth spent in the sun without my SPF-15.

Today when I brush my teeth, instead of focusing on the two bottom teeth that still overlap, despite two years of braces and many more with a retainer, I will thank God I can eat…

I have the ability to chew, taste, swallow and properly metabolize food. I have unlimited access to food. While others in the world have no idea when their next meal will arrive, I live in abundance and excess.

Today when I step out of the shower and begin applying moisturizer to my legs, instead of focusing on the dry skin, increasing cellulite and decreasing muscle definition, I will thank God I can walk…

I can chase my spirited children in circles around the couch and carry them up to bed at night. I can dance with them in the kitchen and leap out of my seat to cheer at their sporting events.

Today when I get dressed, instead of focusing on the c-section scar across my abdomen, I will thank God for the miracle of birth…

The fact that I was able to assist God in creating two human beings, who grew from single-celled organisms to actual people inside my body simply blows my mind. I will praise God that I live in an era where doctors know how to get babies out of bellies by way of surgery, so they can live and not die.

Today when I examine my arms, instead of focusing on the fact that I still cannot do more than two pull-ups to save my life, I will thank God for my strength…

I can embrace my husband and tickle my children and sit at a computer and write and write and write. I can lift laundry baskets and bags of groceries and gallons of milk. I can brush tangles out of hair and adjust little neck ties with elastic bands. I can pull fitted sheets over mattresses (which is way harder than a pull-up) and tie double knots in little shoes.

Today when I swallow my daily anti-depressant, instead of focusing on the fact that I hate taking medication, I will thank God that I am not depressed…

I will celebrate the doctors who researched and developed medication to help people with depression. I will thank God for allowing me to live in a time where these medications are available and in a country where they are accessible. I will remember every doctor, therapist and friend who supported me in my sickness.

Today when I look in the mirror, instead of focusing on every flaw, defect, limitation and deficiency, I will thank God I’m alive. Instead of allowing myself to become overwhelmed with the day’s tasks and responsibilities, I will praise God for a new day. An opportunity to love my family and my friends. A day to color a picture with Elliana, have a pillow fight with Elijah and listen to Rebekah play a new song on her violin. A day to express to Jon how much I appreciate his commitment to me and the kids. A day to open up my home to a friend and connect over coffee.

Today I will remember my friend Lisa, whose life turned upside down a few days ago when she learned she has a rare and aggressive form of cancer.

Who over the next few days will not be folding laundry or tying double knots in little shoes, but will be sitting in cold doctors’ offices discussing treatment and prognosis. Who will be lying helpless and motionless at the hand of a surgeon as he removes this evil intruder called cancer. Who today, is not at all noticing her lack of muscle-tone or her sunspots. Who today, is living in perfect and total clarity about what is important and what is not.

Today when I look in the mirror, I will look past the imperfections and instead, see the miracle.