Did you know that if something is very expensive the kids these days refer to as being so “Gucci”? Now, it doesn’t mean that it has to be the actual Gucci brand. According to my teenage son, it’s just a way to say that something costs a ridiculous amount of money and therefore must be very special. (I’m rolling my eyes as I type this.) Another word that is used regularly around here is ‘dope’. Don’t worry, this isn’t referring to drugs. It’s just another way of saying that something is ‘cool’, a slang word which has actually managed to stand the test of time.
There is a day, a moment, when summer really feels like ‘summer’. You’ve experienced that too, right? It’s the perfect temperature and you’re in the perfect place and all seems right with the world.
Well, this was that day. We were at the pool with friends, the kids were happily playing in the water and we moms were happily chatting and soaking up the sun. I was religiously applying sunscreen, staying hydrated, wearing my sun hat and going for the occasional dip in the water to cool off. But, it was hot. And getting hotter by the minute.
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Oh you guys, you are in for such a treat today! My dear friend Katie Reid wrote a book for all of us who are the doers. The women who like to get things done. We’re the checklist making, school party cupcakes at midnight baking, early morning before the rest of the family gets up waking, meals delivered to everyone in need taking, no rules breaking women…and we’re tired. Tired of all of the striving. But we’re also conflicted about how to marry our natural inclinations for doing with the call of receiving.
Based on the story of the time Jesus spent with Martha and Mary (Luke 10), in her newly released book, Made Like Martha, Katie beautifully captures this tension and offers an empathetic perspective, biblical truths and practical steps we can take to lead us to discovering the freedom to be who God created us to be.
And this week I’m SO thrilled to be helping her kick-off her mobile book club! If you haven’t had a chance to get the book, Katie has graciously provided all of chapter one for you for FREE! Just click here to begin reading.
In the summer of 1981, my parents moved us from Springfield, MO to Los Angeles, CA. At the time, my aunt and uncle were pastoring a church called the ‘Beach Fellowship’ and we began attending. Now, it wasn’t called that because it was simply close in proximity to the beach. No, this church literally gathered ON the beach. We went from wearing patent leather mary jane shoes in the ‘Bible belt’ to wearing swimsuits and flip-flops in the sand. To say this was quite a transition is the grossest of gross understatements.
One of my most favorite things to do this time of the year is to open up our windows and hear the birds chirping. Now, mind you, I don’t always enjoy hearing them REALLY early in the morning, but there is just something about their chirping that is so distinctively and cheerfully symbolic of these warmer days.
Recently, though, we began to notice more activity than usual. Our snowball tree was the object of great interest by two particular birds. They were flying in and out all day and we had no doubt about what was happening.
Sure enough, within a few days, a beautiful nest had taken shape. And soon after that, the mama robin could be seen perched upon the nest. When we would get close to the tree, she would be so very still. Hyper aware of our movements and so protective of her babies.
It became part of our daily ritual to check on the nest. We were always careful to keep our distance but we were just so anxious for the impending arrival of new life.
Recently I found myself seconds away from what was certain to become my most embarrassing moment of all time.
I was shopping for clothes and had determined that I was going to actually need to try on some items which is probably one of my least favorite things to do. I think I’d rather clean our bathrooms than try on clothes.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m finding some of the styles lately to be a tad perplexing. There are lots of missing parts or super puffy sleeves or dangly ribbons or super long backs on shirts with super short fronts. It’s all just a lot to take in. But, I decided that I would pick out some pieces I would normally shy away from and give them a try.
This was a mistake.
Raise your hand if you like being corrected?
Yep. That’s what I thought.
It’s never fun being on the receiving end of correction. That’s why I’ve put together some tips for how to do this with humility and grace AND preserve your relationship with the corrector. Yes, it IS possible!
And I would love to hear from you too! So, tell me…
Has there been a time when you found yourself on the receiving end of correction?
How did it make you feel?
What did the corrector do well?
What could they have done differently?
Thank you for joining me as we tackled this challenging topic!
Once upon a time there was a mother and her tween daughter who set off on a fun adventure together during spring break to explore a beautiful city and enjoy some wonderful bonding time. The mother had carefully planned this trip, even calling the hotel the morning they were due to arrive and confirming their reservation. She was so excited to stay in this historic downtown hotel and knew it would be a lovely surprise for her daughter.
Fifteen minutes away from their destination, as they navigated the busy, unfamiliar freeway system with mom carefully listening to the directions being called out on her phone, suddenly that phone rang and the number for the hotel appeared.
“Hi! This is the Fairmont hotel in Seattle and we are calling to let you know that we have an unexpected event happening here that is causing us to have to move your reservation to another hotel. The secret service has informed us that they need any remaining rooms we have available. I can’t tell you why but I can tell you that we’ve booked you a lovely room at another downtown hotel.”
At first, the mother thought this must be some kind of a joke. The secret service? Really? She tried to get more information from the hotel representative but was basically given the “if we tell you we’ll have to kill you” treatment.
So, bizarre as it all seemed, mother and daughter had no choice but to embrace the change in plans and be redirected to another, less historic but equally lovely, hotel.
The daughter seemed a little bit concerned. How was this all going to work out? Would her mother know how to get to the new hotel? Would they really have a room there? Did her mother know how to navigate around this huge city?
And, as her mother easily found the hotel, parked the car, seamlessly handled the transition of being unexpectedly moved from one hotel to another and even got them a room upgrade(!), the daughter began visibly relaxing.
Upon entering their hotel room, marveling at the amazing view of the city and the water and then stretching out on the comfy beds, the daughter said that she had been a little bit worried about how it was all going to work out. The mother was quick to remind the daughter that this is just part of the adventure of traveling! And that, her mother traveled all over the United States on her own and managed just fine.
But, in that moment it dawned on the mother that she and her daughter had never really experienced a trip like this just the two of them. Most of the time, they went as a whole family and on those trips, the father took the lead (driving, navigating, negotiating) while the mother did a lot more of the ‘behind the scenes’ (making reservations, packing, stopping the mail).
The mother realized something. This was more than simply a fun mother/daughter vacation.
This was an opportunity.
Here was a chance to not just have a really great time adventuring with her daughter, but to show her how to adventure with CONFIDENCE.
How to navigate her way through an unfamiliar city.
How to ask questions of the locals.
How to open your heart and mind to new experiences.
And how to find the best views.
The mother wanted to show the daughter that traveling, like life, sometimes means making adjustments. It means that even though you should plan and prepare, you should also expect the unexpected.
Because, you just never know when the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia is going to bump you from your hotel. 😉
Thanks for meeting this mother and daughter at the fence today,
I was corrected once in our At the Picket Fence community on Facebook. Ok, ok, I’m sure I’ve been corrected more than just once there. But, this time it had a greater impact. And, it started me on a journey towards wanting to know how we can both give AND receive correction in a way that is grace-filled.
So, will you join me as we talk about this hard subject?
What are your thoughts about this whole ‘correction’ thing? I’d love to hear from you!
A couple of weeks before Christmas, my husband and I were able to meet for lunch while the kids were at school. This is one of my favorite things about this stage of parenting. Day-dates are the best!
As we ate yummy food at our favorite restaurant, we began talking about our plans for 2018. We have several home related projects we want to complete and prioritizing those to match our budget involves some strategy. And, as we looked towards the future, it struck us both that in a little over 4 years our oldest child will be graduating from high school. I’m pretty sure when our waitress came over to check on us she was wondering why this cheerful, happy couple was suddenly sitting there looking pained.
Happy New Year dear friends! I had so many plans for how I was going to welcome 2018 with you right here At the Picket Fence but a nasty flu bug has kept me down for the count for a few days beginning on New Year’s Eve. Super fun, right? So, I don’t have any resolutions to share with you or a ‘word of the year’. But, what I do have are some gentle words of encouragement that I hope will help you as you look ahead to the next 12 months. I’ve shared them here before but I felt they beared repeating.
When I became a mom of two I entered into a season of what I found to be a new kind of crazy. I had gotten one child all potty-trained and sleeping through the night and drinking out of a cup without a lid and giving me a chance to take a shower and go to the bathroom by myself…most of the time.