Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Chasing Balloons

One of the things many women ask me about is how I stay organized.  I don’t for a second think I have mastered this to a tee, but I love trying new ways to help our home run smoothly and decided you might enjoy getting in on the discussion with me.

My goal is to blog each week (Wednesdays) about different areas of home life – ways to organize, cleaning tips, parenting, etc.  I welcome your comments, ideas, etc.  This mothering thing isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer, but encouraging one another in it is vital! The best part about caring for your home and family – you’ll always find some new idea to try!  If it works for your family – great!  If not, try something else! 

There’s always room for improvement in the area of organization, but I do enjoy a clean, orderly home, and it’s not by my own doing.  My mom handed her work ethic down to me and it’s one of the best gifts she gave me.  At 52 her age, she still can out work me sometimes!    

As a young wife, I learned invaluable lessons by reading Emilie Barnes myriad of books – she is my hero, and more recently discovered a little book called “The Treasure of Careful Planning” by Donna Kauffman.  I in no way want to take away from what these women have taught me through their writing, so I would encourage you to buy their books!  They are full of wonderful ideas – and much more extensive than what I have here!

So, here goes…

Why Organize?

It was the first day of school, the kids were excited, backpacks packed, teeth brushed, clean sneakers poking out under new shorts and T-shirts.  Tim was home and taking the kids to school was going to be a family affair.  Kobe would be my only child left at home all day, and I always imagined I'd be clicking my heels on our way home from school.

But looking at my kids that morning, I began to experience unexpected moisture in  my eyes, a strange lump in my throat, and difficulty smiling and I was shocked!  I’ve always been an eye-roller at the too-often heard, “enjoy them while they’re young” kind of stuff.  Those older women must have lost their minds when raising their kids if they couldn’t remember how slowly the days of teething, potty training, and never-wear-black-cause-it-shows-snot-streaks-on-your-shoulder creeped by!  I had been a responsible, devoted mother of four for eleven years.  The light at the end of the tunnel was getting lighter and I thought I’d be giddy! 

But I wasn’t.

The kids ran outside that morning to climb into the van.  Kobe was holding a helium balloon, and (of course) it got away.  Cue the wailing voices!  I saw the balloon skirt across the lawn slowly, the helium already having lost most of its power, so I was sure a few quick steps and I’d easily capture it.   

In my mind’s eye, I could already see the look on Kobe’s face, “Dude, my mom is like, so cool!”  I wanted to be like, so cool, so I ran quickly towards the balloon, but that crazy thing kept floating further and further away, always just out of my grasp.  It was so… so close I was sure I’d be able to get it.  I kept running, arms outstretched, Tim was yelling to “let it go” but I could still hear Kobe crying and I was more determined to be his hero!

So I ran.  I ran as hard and as fast as I could across the lawn and into the field.   I jumped rows of beans, sank deep into the dirt – even lost my shoes.  Finally, I stopped.  The balloon hung in mid-air for a moment then slowly floated away.  I had to let it go.  I turned around, hot, sweaty and dirty to see my kids and Tim standing up by the barn looking at me.  I felt like I had failed them somehow.  And that’s when it hit me.

“Nice.  Good timing there, God!”  Always love a great illustration when I’m not in the mood!  But He was right in what He was showing me.  They’re here – with me - for such a short time, and soon, there will be nothing I can do, but watch them go off into the world.  It made me ask myself, am I doing all I can to enjoy the moments I have with them?  I certainly don’t want to be standing at a distance someday feeling like I wasn’t the mother and wife I could’ve, should’ve, would’ve been if…

On days when I wonder why I bother with all my lists, plans and goals, I remember that moment in the bean field.  I do it for them!  My family is one of my greatest passions and purposes on this planet and I aim to do my job well. 

In the coming weeks, I hope you’ll join me in exploring new and old ways to serve our families more efficiently – which ultimately, gives us more free moments to enjoy with them!

1 comment:

Amy said...

Looking forward to more!