Thursday Three

I have everything to say and nothing to tell you, so might as well ramble off three things for Thursday. Let’s do this.

1. Fall weather brings all the feels. The drizzly day that gives you an excuse to curl up on the couch, the crunchy leaves and colorful trees to break through the dark, the ability to eat outside but still require the warmth of the fire, and of course, the reintroduction of my collection of scarves back into my wardrobe. Fall has long been my favorite season, and I’m thankful it’s here.

Parents Visit | Moving Peaces

2. There will be rest. Remember being in school and getting to the point in the semester when you realized a big break was coming up but the final exams and projects between now and that break seemed insurmountable? The break always came and somehow you managed to get through, no matter how many all-nighters, freak outs, and cups of coffee it took. That is where I’m at right now. I know that one day the break will come…maybe I’ll sleep in until lunch time or I’ll get so bored of having free time that I’ll have to pack my schedule all over again. (Okay, maybe this daydream is getting out of hand.) But this is the time of the struggle and the hard work and the effort. Not the fun part, but still important. Just like in my school days, I don’t totally know how I’ll get to a break from it all and a time of rest, but I’m confident that it will come.

3. You don’t have to be on social media every day. I realize half of you are reading this blog because it was posted there, but I really think pulling away from the nonstop feed is better. It’s such a force of habit for me and feels soothing for a minute…but I’ve also found myself feeling stung by a photo or post that frankly, doesn’t bear any actual weight on my life. That photo of a fun outing or declaration of success or request for attention just piles on until I feel less. Less interesting, less cared for, less accomplished, less informed, less fortunate, less engaged in my own life and community. The more I scroll, the less I feel I become. The good news is, we can turn off social media and just look up and talk to the people we most want to connect with instead.

Too Much is Too Much

Sunflower Field | Moving Peaces

This a full season–a packed time of so many good things, but in the end it’s making me feel exhausted and overwhelmed. To start, I’ve been out of town for four of the last five weekends. Not to mention, there’s been major happenings at work for both of us, a quick birthday party for him, and a number of out-of-town guests who have stayed with us. The next few weeks only bring more travel, more out-of-town guests, and more big projects and events. 

With so many good things happening, it’s hard to admit that I can’t wait for it to all be over. Somehow everything just got scheduled all at once, making September, October, and part of November exhausting before they even started. Some days it feels like too much but then I think, I should be able to take on just a little bit more! This is all good stuff, why should I need a break? We live in a culture that says more is good and if you’re adding more good things then it must be really good. After reading Shauna Niequist’s post on the Storyline blog, I was reminded today that too much is still too much, regardless of if it is good or bad.

Last week I said “no” to something I wanted to say “yes” to and said, “let me get back to you” on something I almost said “yes” to…but then literally ran out of time to simply send a text saying, “Yes, I’ll do it.” I didn’t blog once last week, and thankfully, didn’t feel any remorse about it even though I had plenty to say. I’d rather say yes to all the things and all the people,  but I’m realizing that not all good things are worth taking on, no matter how much I want to do them. 

The reality is, I could continue to have a busier life. I have a spare hour here or there that hasn’t yet been claimed or scheduled away. I could technically do more and hustle the heck out of my week. Somehow, other people seem to do it. Half of my motivation sometimes comes from looking around at the people who manage to pull it off…all with three or four kids and amazing looking instagram photos to boot.

So why do I keep failing? If they can do it, why am I having such a hard time keeping it all together with my no kids and fuzzy instagram photos? What’s my excuse for always being slightly behind and never quite enough? Why do I have these goals and dreams, but so little energy that it seems they are impossible to achieve?

I don’t have the answers to those questions…but I can feel with everything in me that this needs to be a season of soaking up as much rest as possible. We’re still not out of the woods with all the things we have committed to or the trips we are booked to take, but in the moments in between, rest is what we need.

Therefore, I’m giving myself permission to slow down. To let go of my own expectations and extend grace when rest is more important than the to-do list. This doesn’t mean abandoning my goals or backing out of all of my commitments, but instead discerning what is truly important right now. What needs to be addressed today and what will still be there tomorrow or next month. Where I should ask for help and when I need to say no. This is not shutting myself out from the world, but rather seeking the right balance and telling the truth about where I am right now.

My next few weeks and months will continue to be full, but with the extra little bits of time in between I will do everything I can to hold onto whatever rest that it offers.   

This Week’s Three

This Week’s Three

It’s Friday, and I’m just now getting to the weekly recap. Whoops. Here’s a few questions that I think are worth asking…

1. Do you have to? Sometimes you have a lot to do but then realize you don’t have to do it and really need to take a nap or call a good friend instead. A lot of this week I’ve been stressed out by my to-do list, only to step back and see that only a small fraction of it had to be done by the deadline I had given myself. There’s usually something that can wait a day and take a backseat to the things that are really important.

2. Did you take the chance you had? All summer long I’ve said we’ll get to a baseball game. A simple and small thing, but it didn’t happen last summer and here we are at the end of the season. With a packed weekend ahead, Monday night was our last chance, and I’m so glad we took it.

Baseball Game | Moving Peaces

3. Who do you want to be like? I think we are each individuals with unique talents and dreams, but I also think we are greatly influenced by those around us. This weekend, my three-year-old niece wanted her hair to match mine, regardless of what it looked like. As we get older, that admiration may take a different form, but I think there’s still value in it. If there’s someone who you appreciate or respect, it’s worth realizing what it is about them that you would like to learn from and work towards. Maybe it’s their values, commitment, skills, work ethic or wisdom. Who are those people in your life? Are they the right people to learn from? What is it that you admire most?

Braids | Moving Peaces

Thursday Three

Thursday Three

Every hour in my day seems to fly on by and suddenly it’s Thursday. I feel like I can’t keep up with the clock…it just keeps going. Whew. Welcome to the (almost) weekend. You made it!

1. Growing up is like growing a garden. We’ve loved having a garden this summer–there’s nothing quite like some fresh tomatoes and basil (with cheese, of course). We’ve expanded this year’s garden to also include okra, spinach, cucumber, kale and a few herbs. But let me just say, it takes work. It requires daily attention, cutting out the bad and elements completely outside of our control (like good weather and no rabbits). In the same way, personal growth and development takes time and effort, working through and eliminating the bad and faithfully waiting through the variables we simply cannot control. A garden is the perfect reminder of that process.

Garden | Moving Peaces

2. We all have strengths and talents. Mine just happens to be writing incredible to-do lists. While you may never see me performing that in a talent show, it’s still pretty significant and can help out the people around me. So, use your talent. Even if it doesn’t belong in a frame or on a stage, it can still make an impact.

3. Rest is important. We live in a culture that praises busy and expects constant work. The problem is, that’s not sustainable, healthy or necessary. Yes, use your strengths but also, set aside time for rest. You can and should take some time to rest every day, every week, every month and every year. Take a break. It’ll be okay.



By the lake

Sometimes it’s time to rest. Coming from me, a person who is constantly thinking through every angle, taking the next steps and all together on the go, that’s big. I’ve been quoted as saying before that I wish we didn’t need sleep to function (I’ve said the same about food but for entirely different reasons). Of course, Saturday morning is not the time of day that I generally share such sentiments. That’s the one time of the week that I celebrate sleep. Usually around midnight is when I wish I could  pull an all-nighter every day of the week without any impact on my health and just work on projects and spend time with people instead.

I don’t take health lightly. I’ve had my own bouts of illness and unexplained issues unfortunately in the past. Health is so important and key to your daily life. It also can be one of the greatest indicators that you aren’t resting enough. Today, I have no voice. Seriously, it’s sad. I sound like a cat who nearly escaped drowning. Actually, maybe that’s not what I sound like because I have a feeling there would be a bit more of a yowling sound to that. The point is, I’ve pushed it too far for too long. I’m sure every Thursday Three for the past few weeks has mentioned being busy, and I don’t like it. But I resolved to push through despite what I knew I should be doing. I wanted to do it all, yet I knew that’s not possible. I thought if I could just do this thing then this thing then this thing then this….then I will somehow manage to have it all together and make it happen. Yet I was missing REST. No agenda but to rest and revitalize.

Earlier today I sent an email to a friend saying that we’d be heading to a cabin in a few weeks and I had hoped to catch up on rest then. Saying it now just sounds crazy. I’m going to pencil in resting WEEKS from now? No wonder my body mandated a sick day. While I’m terrible at taking naps (and have been since I was two), I spent time today laying in bed with my eyes closed anyway. Never fell asleep but still got some rest. So, if you’re on the fence about it, let me encourage you to do the same. I promise you this is a reminder to me just as much as it is to you. We all need rest and need to make sure it’s a daily and weekly occurrence, not something we plan for once a season.


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Go Big or Go Home

Okay, sure. You’re motivating me to really go for it, right? Win that big game, challenge the cowardice. Reach beyond the minimum and shoot for the stars. Go big or go home.

You’ll hear me saying, “let’s do (this)…just to say we did!” as if someone is keeping track of the number of adventures I’ve had in my life. I love pushing for that extra experience. Love traveling. Love a decent challenge or brainstorm for an even better idea. I mean, we did just move halfway across the country without a whole lot pulling us here. I’d like to think that means we aren’t the safest players out there; we take risks. We’re living life.

That said, can I just pick “go home”, given the two choices?

Because what if killing yourself for a project isn’t worth it? What if being “successful” by certain standards means never seeing that house or family you’re supporting? Or losing hours of sleep each night to a point of poor health? What if “going big” amounts to a lonely personal life? What if the words have stopped flowing easily because you decided to go big instead of go home and your brain is no longer able to think creatively?

I don’t want to live a life of mediocrity, I assure you. But something is off in our society when people aren’t taking vacation time, lunch breaks or getting a good night’s sleep. We need rest and rejuvenation in our lives. It’s the only way we’ll ever really be able to take on something more. Go big or—really win this one and—GO HOME.