Seasons

Can you believe we are half way through the first month of the year? Did you make resolutions? Are you hanging in?

I have been quiet. Life has been quiet and delightful. The extraordinary, chaos of having imagesour house full of kids over the holidays has died. The bustling of shopping, the parties, and entertaining through the New Year is gone. The snow continues to fall and its quiet. That placid, calmness that is carried in after a new year begins is incredible! Winter season.

This is always my regroup-reassemble-organize-tea-time-book-reading time of year. It’s cozy and delicious.

In these moments of quiet is when I hear God. It’s when work happens. It’s when closeness arrives.

I’m still riveted by my word for the year: patience. I often find myself fidgety, and saying “OK, let’s get going on this, and see what it all means.” Then I am gently reminded to be quiet. Wait. Lean in and be patient.

0e7f937cb212216ba9409e26c270df10As days creep on and God peels back layers of me like an onion, its literally captivating me to see what is and what will be revealed. What wisdom is he going to drop on me? To know him better? To live more profoundly through him? What needs resuscitated in me? In the life of my husband and I? In our family? How will he use me this year?

Our last child is a senior this year. Knowing this is plaguing me. It’s gone so fast. Too fast! We have loved the dickens out of our kids and have had the MOST-WONDERFUL time raising then, goofing off with them, laughing with them, having grand adventures with them, traveling with them and living this life-journey with them. We love them with such fierceness. Our best things ever in life have been our kids. So now….we are in this pivotal, transition. We both know it is going to be a time of patience and change and growth and modification and revision. As well as resurrection.  The best-friend couple coming back into a place of being “just a couple” again. Older. Smarter. More in love, with decades of growth and passion and zeal under our belts. Already the hubs and I are both sorta going..”HUH?” We’ve talked about this time coming for a while and now it’s almost here. We are excited and thrilled to be transitioning into this next phase of life. It’s bittersweet though. No more “crazy” of a houseful of kids, but onto the “crazy” of just being a couple again. Very thrilling!! A whole new season. A whole new circus ride!images-1

 

Another thing going on in the Fun-House  is race season prep. I’ve also had great patience regarding this. I’ve been reading over training plans, meal plans, rest plans….you name it. In some ways I’ve had to be patient, coming off of a recent running injury and a less than stellar year health wise. All that is behind me now, and I’m starting to round out the season. I talked with a sweet friend of mine yesterday and told her I have a whole new approach this year. I’m not racing frenetically. Not getting pulled into races randomly. Not falling into any type of pressure. The season is well planned out. Allowing me for some incredible training and race time with family and friends, but not enough to consume me. It’s all about having a lot of fun! (It always is) and balance. I’m being kinder to my body and kinder to my soul. Eating better and DRINKING better (as in H2O, which I am admittedly horrible about.) Turns out, the camel approach…not always the best for our human bodies. I will get to do some fun traveling to Pittsburgh, PA (GO STEELERS!) back to my place of birth to run and ruckus with my cuzzies and see A LOT of family and to California (HOLLA being able to race a 70.3 in my hometown!!) and end it all with a most-epic adventure in August! The icing on the cake!! Honestly!  THE ICING!

It’s not a busy schedule by any sense of the word. But a fun-butt-kicking-laugh-alot-and-train-with-good-friends-season! It already feels good!

It’s a Joy-Filled season all authored by the One who knows and loves my soul in the most furious of ways. Who knew exactly what kind of year I needed!7efb6abf00184733b6b41d1a0db1fc6d

One Word

And so it is. Just like that. My word.

I sat early morning; everyone sleeping in my overflowing household of kids and friends and dogs and joy and gladness. I was in prayer. I have been on my knees, Bible open for days, waiting on my word. I cracked open my latest Bible study and starting working, all the while listening, waiting. And there it was bold and final. Pressed on my heart. Resolute, as to not be missed. Undaunted. In my quietness, God whispered. I closed my eyes and gave out a sweet, “thank you” and then giggles, followed by a prayer of, “are you sure?” As if He doesn’t know exactly what he’s doing.

Patience.

Patience? Unknown

Patience!

This certainly could NOT be the word that was meant for me. I am a lot of things, but patient is probably not something that would get the vote when describing me. I can have patience, but it is not in my nature. I am quick-witted, fiery and passionate. I love fiercely and without boundary. I am a hard worker, driven, determined. I am intelligent and a complete goofball…but NEVER have I been much for patience. It’s always full steam ahead…. I’m not too great at sitting on my hands.

Image-1Patience! I wrote it down.

This past year I would say my patience has been put to the test. The things I love to do were sidelined due to injuries, illness and lack of preparation. Needless to say THIS did not make me happy. But I know God has a bigger picture in store. A much better plan than the smallness of this past year, that’s being held in my mind. All that aside, there is something He’s working on.

It’s just like Him to get my attention. To plant this seed in my heart to watch grow. Just like him to derail MY plans for HIS. This is where he does his best work. Creates his masterpieces in us.

I looked up a few verses regarding patience and this is what I found: (trust me there are TONS)

~Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Col 3:12

~But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness faithfulness. Gal 5:22

~The end of a matter is better than its beginning; likewise, patience is better than pride. Ecc 7:8

~with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love Eph 4:2

~Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him Ps 37:7

~We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy. Col 1:11

The verses go on. I sat for 2 hours reading, writing and meditating on His Words!images

We live in a world of instant gratification. Patience for anything is hard. I sat and thought about the times I have showed patience, or was forced to have patience. Waiting for my first love, waiting to marry my hubs (we dated a long time) waiting for our children to be born, waiting on a move to Coeur d’Alene, waiting on a vacation, waiting on a visit from our sweet, kids, waiting on a girlfriend date…all of those things reap the sweetest rewards. Plenty of times I have been hasty, quick to respond, making sudden, abrupt, changes or decisions without a lot of thought. Without a lot of consideration and without seeking Him in my decisions. That has often created a lot of conflict in more ways than one. It’s caused hardship, guilt, blame, tension, friction and often remorse. It’s no wonder there are the quotes “patience is a virtue” and “buyers remorse.”

FullSizeRender copy 2I know that God has a sense of humor. I know this because he has given me this word. In all honesty, this is where he intends to grow me. In my deepest places and the innermost workings of my being, I know this. It fills me with so much hope and excitement to see how this will unfold. How this will change my life. How this will glorify him. What boundaries will be broken within me? What new and glorious treasures will unfold from this? I already know for certain, anything I think or could even imagine will be so profoundly out done.

Have you tried this?  Have you found your One Word for the year?

Interestingly enough my sweet husband’s word for the year: PREPARE

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Happy New Year

Unknown

I fell off the wagon. I’m not quite sure what happened. Actually that’s a total lie, I do know. Passion was lost and a lot of life happened. My hubs, our family and I had a tremendous 2015. We lived so full! But somewhere along the lines, this blog took a chair on the sidelines. One day a few months back, my sage-like and wise hubs asked..”Why aren’t you blogging” I milled the answer around in my mind for days…swirling it like the last few sips in a wine glass before I came back to him with my answer. My tap house of creativity had bottomed out. I was too busy “doing” and not taking the downtime I needed and loved, to write. That is a recipe for disaster in a creative brain. Funny thing is; I THOUGHT I was taking down time. Now that I look back over this year, I was full steam ahead. What a great learning lesson.

I am praying for my One Word for the year (I do not do resolutions, I do a WORD) I am being patient. God always comes through on the word. I wait with great expectation and excitement for what God has in store. My word last year was Risk. Come to find out, that was a heavy word for my world, in so many horribly, wonderful ways. It was a tremendous year of risk. I embraced it, but am happy to moving forward into the New Year. I had a sweet, dear girlfriend tell me a few weeks back, to “Lean In” <to God> I’m leaning, sister. I’m leaning.

UnknownAs I go forward into the New Year, here are the things I DID take heart to. Maybe they weren’t’ being spilled out onto the pages of my blog, Facebook or other social media, but they were there. They are still there. They are still resonating inside me. Things noticed. Things loved. Things of trial. Things of complete gratitude. If nothing else, THIS year of RISK was an incredible year of learning experiences for me. Would I change anything? Absolutely not! But I am ready for pruning and new growth! 

There is nothing like family.

Small things are often the biggest things of all.

Sacrifice

Humility and selflessness are key elements to feeling truly fulfilled.

I need sand in my toes.

Raising a new puppy is exhilarating, takes patience and makes you belly laugh all within a 10 second period.

True, authentic friends are everything.

When life is rough, you learn who is true. And sadly, who isn’t.

Being sick is NO joke.

Raising your last senior is heartbreaking.

There’s true joy in making snow angels.

Laughter can be a great cure.

Joy needs to happen. Every. Single. Day.

Red wine and a girlfriend can bring world peace.

God is everywhere. Just take the time to stop and take a look.

Mountains make me feel so small and incredibly enormous at the same time.images-1

A dog’s love knows no boundaries.

When you have something good, hold onto it for dear life.

Cancer sucks.

Sometimes you just have to cry.

Having a daily dance party is a necessity.

Being private pushes some people away, unfortunately.

Don’t take yourself too serious.

Puppy kisses are the BEST.

My husband is the best human I have ever had the chance to know and love.

There is nothing like having all of your kids in one place at one time.

Travel needs to happen. And often.

Don’t be afraid to do something new.

The alpine lake is cold; jump in anyway. You certainly won’t regret it.

Seek out some sort of adventure, daily.

Never allow fear to beat you.

If you aren’t absolutely happy, change.

No amount of persuasion can make me do something I chose not to do.

Giving, really only fills you up.

Comfort zones; smash them.

Generosity gives you millions.

You are WAY stronger than you think.

My laugh lines are gorgeous; it means I’ve had a lifetime of joy and laughter.

Taking care of your body is not selfish.

Doing what you love is not selfish.

Some people can be so poor that all they have is money.

You can see a generous heart a mile away. And sadly, vice-versa.

Love one another fiercely.

Have a passion.

Sadly, not everyone is a nice person.

Want exactly what you have and you will feel rich beyond anything you can imagine.

There is nothing like a Mama heart.

Just when you think your kids have gone off the deep end, they become your best friends.

Racing, running, triathlon is not who you are.

Embrace and drink in every second you can with your children.

Do the things that make your heart beat wildly and bring you happiness.

That still, small voice..listen…It’s the voice of God.

Receiving cards from friends can light up your darkness.

Smile at every stranger. They need it, or they will think you’re weird. Either way, it’s a win.

Give to the homeless and less fortunate.

Take the trip of a lifetime. You aren’t guaranteed tomorrow.

Get into an RV and travel across the country.

Take your shoes off a walk in the grass.

Remember, you are raising someone’s husband or wife.  Grow your kids accordingly.

Laugh everyday until you cry.

Being on a Panamanian island for 2 weeks with teenagers is like wrangling cats.

Treat people nicely and with respect.

Burn the nice candle.

Take lots of photos. You won’t always remember.

Go out and build the snowman.

When you’re with friends, put your phone down. Don’t waste their time, or yours.

Run in the snow, sunshine and rain.

Never sit inside on a sunny day.

You CAN live in a house with 17 people for a week and all get along…in fact, you can have the time of your life.

That thing that you’ve dreamed of doing….do it!

Your house looks great! Your friends don’t care anyway.

Really listen to people.

Drink the expensive wine.

Act goofy. Who cares?

Be yourself.  Who are you trying to impress?

Sweat. Every. Single. Day.

Commuter flights in a foreign country can be an act of insurmountable courage.

Celebrating 50 years of marriage is a HUGE milestone to be treasured.

Laugh at yourself.

When traveling, learn the local language. Even if it’s only a few phrases. The locals will love you!

Don’t ever go to bed mad at a family member.

Sing Karaoke and make a fool of yourself.

Do something this year that you thought you could not.

Give generously.

Watch the sunrise and/or sunset.  It will WOW you! Always!

Make people laugh wildly.

Risk….it was harder than I thought.

 

Happy Blessed 2016 images