Category archives: Slowing Down

Happiness is...

Happiness is shutting down the glowing screen and stepping away from the wreck for just a bit and taking a barefoot walk in the grass after the rain. And happiness is pausing long enough to peer up into a thousand tiny branches. It's sticking out your tongue and sipping up the rain from the tips of trees... Or letting the edges tickle your shoulder as you walk beneath. Happiness is stretching out and reaching up... To feel the world around you, so you can more fully see. Happiness is pressing close, And stooping down and leaning in to all the wild things. Happiness is cupping tiny cheeks in the palm of your hands and looking  into little eyes to whisper kind, "I'm so glad you're here. You're a good, good kid! I'm thankful God mad[...]

On Early Morning Walks and Spider Webs and Being a Momma

I set out for a walk in the morning, while the kids and Brent still sleep. I’m not used to this—taking walks in the morning, but on this particular morning, I decide to be a little crazy. Switch things up a bit and try something new. More often than not, I sleep right up until Brent is smooching my forehead goodbye and one of the kids is crawling into bed with me, letting me know it’s time for some chocky milk and breakfast. But, on this particular morning, I actually do what I wish I would always  do. I get up early enough to enjoy a cup of coffee while spending time with Jesus. He calls Himself the Word and He teaches that we humans weren’t created to function on bread alone. Our life fuel shouldn’t only consist of coffee and toast and the physical kind of stuff. Because we’re mor[...]

If You Get Lost in Your Day

Do you ever get lost in your day? If you happen to be in the same season of life as I am, you might find yourself standing a little bewildered in the middle of your kitchen, as your five year old and nearly four year old are on their hands and knees on the linoleum, simultaneously wailing at the top of their lungs because of the wretched disappointment in which their lives have turned out. You know, because your boy doesn’t like the toast with “nuts” in it and your girl seriously needs her chocky milk “warmed up.” All the while, your eight month old is pulling all the cook-books off the shelf for the umpteenth time. A momma can feel so lost before 10 a.m. And if you’re not careful, everything will ream out of control from there and you’ll only get more lost-er. (No, that’s not a [...]

How I'm Learning To Enjoy This Life

The girl with the paint smear on her forehead ran, like some wild child, like someone without a care in the world. Like someone utterly free. So, her momma turned to see. To see that light in her eyes and the way it shines out through her smile and punctuates her cheeks. And the boy, he ran too. Like a crazy hooligan, streaking through the hallway, tearing through the kitchen, and all for sheer pleasure. Nothing else. And that momma of theirs was captivated. She couldn't stop watching how the fully alive enjoy just living. She'd read about the dying. What they had to say. How they wished the living ones would just slow down and really feel their lives. She'd watched a dying man express how intensely happy he was when he heard the pitter patter of his little girl's feet comi[...]

On Loneliness and Longing

Some days I walk around feeling inconsolably lonely. And I always think that it's strange. Because I have these people around me that love me well and love me deep and that I love immensely. Namely, my husband and kids. And I've got a fair amount of friends. And a cell phone and email and facebook to keep up with the ones I can't see face to face, much. But, still, I go through these phases of just feeling so lonesome. I can be smack dab in the middle of all the folks I love and yet, there's this sadness, this feeling that something isn't quite right. That somehow I'm not complete or that I'm not at home. And when I try to put my finger on it, I find that I'm ravishingly hungry for Someone else. Someone other. Like, I'm starved for God. I know. It's strange. And when I read the B[...]

When You Wonder What the Winter is Good For

      It's so cold here. Just so cold. Today the wind blows the snow from the trees and everything is still the whitest white and I've been staying inside much more than I care to admit. I've got these daydreams that keep me warm. I'm there at the camp lake with my kids. They're playing in the shallows and  hunting for shells and tadpoles while I'm sifting sand through my toes with the sun on my cheeks. I'm smiling in my daydreams. And I'm warm. Toasty warm. About this time every year I start wondering why in tarnations I moved to the north country and what the winter is even good for anyways. But, I've got this friend who strings wooden beads in her hair and paints with hemp and she tells me that there are so many good things about the cold and winter. This friend who grows [...]

On Loving Christmas More

  I’m loving Christmas more and more. It’s incredibly fun with little ones. Gideon seems especially excited this year. I wish you could have seen him, in the living room, jumping up and down, exclaiming, “Momma, I can’t WAIT to put up the Christmas tree! You know why? Because I love those BALLS! You know those shiny BALLS? Let’s get some of those BALLS and put them on the tree! Can we? Can we?” He was ridiculously beside himself. And in all his thrill and awe, I recovered my little girl wonder. And now that our tree is up, one of my favorite things to do is get up early before my rambunctious little people do, stumble downstairs to turn on the Christmas tree lights and then drink coffee on the couch while I spend time with my Maker.  It’s a sweet time. Just me and God and the [...]

Letter from Home

Dear people that I made,Why do you live like I don't exist?It's not like I don't make it plain before your face. As if I'm not daily shouting it out, "Here I AM!"I do. I shout it. I very much shout it. I made this whole wide world in such a way that you would clearly see Me. So you'd see My glory. And My grace. I gave you breath and beauty so you'd go looking for Me, so you could find Me.  Why walk here blind when I would have you see? Take a long and thoughtful look at what's right in front of you. This art I spoke into existence with My own words. My Personhood is reflected in the wildflowers at your feet and the sky above your head.Look up. Look out. Open wide your eyes and really see! Those leaves are crimson letters on the branch, spelling out the reality of Me. And why do [...]

When I'm a Little More Still

I'm being a little more still these days. Because I have a new little one and my first trip to Lowe's with the three kids made me realize that I just don't quite have what it takes to go out and about just yet. I had thought it would be fun to get out and buy some living things. But, Gideon and Hope were far too fascinated with the bird baths and trickling water fountains to listen to their momma yell repeatedly to come back and Samuel took up all the space in the shopping cart with his car seat so there wasn't much room for perennials, anyways. Even if they were on sale for a dollar. So, I'm enjoying my yard more. And my house is staying a little cleaner because I used to leave my laundry and dishes behind on a whim, but now I get tired just thinking about it.And while I'm being a little[...]

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