Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Transitions...and sin...yeah, mostly sin.

 This week I am NOT going back to school for teacher's prep-week.  I'm not going to lie, after 6 years, it feels a little strange. Don't get me wrong, I had a HELLACIOUS (<- word? not sure), year last year and I'm in no rush to have a repeat.  But, a big part of me grieves the experience that I thought I'd be having right now.  That being said, God truly does work in mysterious ways.  Even though it's what Eric and I had always spoken about, I'm not sure that I would have had the guts to walk away from my dream job and raise a family if it hadn't ceased to be my dream job.

I miss my kiddos, I miss summer running with my cross country team (no, I really do!).

{Last year our high school ladies team took second place at the state meet! We were small, but mighty!}

I miss the first day when all the kids come in so excited and the year is brand new.  I miss buying school supplies. I miss getting to know all of the little humans that populated the seats in my room.

But more than all that, there's something deeper at play.  I miss who I was as a teacher. I know that as a Christian, I ought not to find my identity in my career, my spouse, my kids, my hobbies, ANYTHING but the Lord... But that kind of sin sneaks in really quietly.  It slips under the doorways that you guard and into the thoughts you try to push away.  And without realizing it, I have found that teaching and having a career (the kind for which you go to college and earn a degree), had become the majority of who I was, and what I liked about myself.

And now it's gone.

Funny that you often only see your sin when you're looking back upon it (insert cliche about hindsight here). I could market this whole situation to you as me just "making the transition to full-time motherhood."  And I won't lie, it's quite a process.  But for me, I have to call it what it really is, a sin, a sin of pride.  I am proud of what I did as a teacher, I am proud of what I accomplished, and if that was all, it would be OK.  But mostly I'm proud of myself as a teacher.  I took pride in my self-sufficiency and how good I was at it (and no deprecation here, I was pretty good at it). I took pride in my constant improvements, and even how I looked doing it. That's the parts that I'm missing, the parts that should have never been.

Sin, as it always does, steals your joy.  Do I look back on the past school years and fondly reminisce about the great experiences I had?  For the most part, no. I just miss and mope about the lack of that season in my life at this time.  I'll eventually get over this, and be able to look back fondly, that I am certain of; the Lord always makes a way for forgiveness.

But for now, as I repent of my pride and ask God to tear those parts of me away and replace them with more of him, it hurts.  I lie awake at night (hello, pregnancy insomnia!), and think about what my purpose is.  How many times can I clean my house?  And why is laundry NEVER DONE?! It's tempting to wallow and wish that things were different.  It's tempting to minimize the job I am about to take over: mother to a baby boy. This I KNOW is not from God, and needs stripping away immediately.

As I move forward, and closer and closer to the birth of our son, I know God will keep up the good work he started in me.  Sometimes, though, I wish it didn't hurt so much.  I've started collecting children's books for Andrew, and one of my favorites so far is called "You Are Special," by Max Lucado.

It's the story of a world of little wooden people who give one another stickers for their achievements, gold for good things, grey for bad things.  One particular wooden boy, Punchinello, is covered in grey dots and very discouraged.  He meets a girl who has no stickers whatsoever and she tells him she stays like this because she daily visits the woodworker, Eli who made them.  Punchinello decides to go and see the woodworker as well, and the following are the last two pages of the book (spoiler alert, haha!)...

"Every day I've been hoping you'd come," Eli explained.

"I came because I met someone who had no marks," said Punchinello, "She told me about you. Why don't the stickers stay on her?"

The maker spoke softly, "Because she has decided that what I think is more important than what they think.  The stickers really only stick if you let them. They only stick if they matter to you. The more you trust my love, the less you care about their stickers."

"I'm not sure I understand," questioned Punchinello.

Eli smiled, "You will, but it will take time.  You've have a lot of marks.  For now, just come to see me every day, and let me remind you how much I care. Remember," Eli said as Punchinello walked out the door, "you are special just because I made you. And I don't make mistakes."

Punchinello didn't stop, but in his heart he thought, "I think he really means it." And when he did, a single grey dot fell to the ground. 

I pray that as I go along daily that God will keep removing my dots, and reminding me that he doesn't make mistakes.  Thanks for listening in to the whirlwind inside my head, maybe you can identify with this, or maybe not.  If you can, come along with me to visit the maker every day.  Someday we will be dot-free. =)

Saturday, July 26, 2014


For those of you who are coming from my other blog, A Kitchen Table for Two, welcome! For those who are not, welcome to you also! =) I'm starting a new blog in hopes of making my direction and focus (or lack there of) a bit more clear.  I started my previous blog as a place to list recipes, which grew into DIY, which grew into personal topics, which grew into travel... And then our family started to grow! We no longer have a kitchen table for just two - we are nearly three (only 5 weeks left!), with a dog and a full full life that can't really be nailed down into a specific type of blog.  Enter this site...

I intend to chronicle anything I want to right here.  I'll write about everything from DIY to motherhood, from pet-peeves to recipes and restaurant reviews, from travel to finances.  Basically I get to do what I want and not feel bad about it.  I like that.  Join in if you want, or don't, it's up to you.  If you choose to stick around I promise that you will see the following things

  • Parentheses  - If you don't like them (who doesn't?!), you should head out now.
  • Words that aren't really words - Ohmygosh, they are so perfect for certain situations.
  • My warped sense of humor - It's best not to hide the crazy, just embrace it.
  • My opinions - I think this goes without saying?  I welcome dialogue as long as we are all kind.
  • Mostly proper grammar and spelling - Oxford commas will be a thing here. I'm just saying.
  • Posts with pictures  - They're so much more fun to read, aren't they?
  • Posts without pictures - They're easier to write and I am going to be a new mom. Deal with it.
  • Posts about whatevertheheck I want.  Including but not limited to everything mentioned above (food, travel, mommmyhood, DIY, people who pick their nose, etc.).
What you will NOT see here:
  • Any advertisements for my business, should I ever choose to have one.  This is a place for friends, and it irks me when people try to sell you stuff (See?  Here come my opinions and parentheses!)
  • Graphic or inappropriate content. Unless my ranting about a visit to the DMV qualifies as graphic or inappropriate... There's a chance.
  • A cute website, at least for now. I'm working on it behind the scenes, but it's low on the priority list.  Somewhere between running a new 20amp electrical line to my microwave and painting my toes again before I give birth.  So, be patient. Suggestions (or offers of your free web-design services) are welcome. 
I hope that I've given you realistic expectations.  I would love to update here daily.  Is that likely?  Maybe not (new motherhood is hard, at least that's what I hear), but since I can post whatever I want, it does make me more likely not to feel overwhelmed by posting (a problem with my previous blog). 

This is our real life, and you can watch it happen in all its craziness and glory right here. We live on a large plot of land in the middle of a densely populated college town, hence the name: An Urban Acre.  All of our adventures living here will be right on this little blog. If you're choosing to stick around, then great, click "follow" or "join this site" off on the right sidebar and I'll see you soon!