Tuesday, January 13, 2009

New Favorite Quote

"When you reach the end of your rope,....
You will find the hem of
His garment."

Monday, January 5, 2009

2009 Resolutions (warning...long winded!)

It seems like every year I make some type of a resolution, only to not really end up following through. (I can only think of once that I actually completely accomplished my goal.) I love the idea of a New Year and a "fresh start", if you will. But the list of resolutions is not working for me, though I still want to better my family and myself with this upcoming year. For the past week or so I have been contemplating how I can do what I want to do and be successful. And all of this thinking has brought me back to the days when I was working and I had goals to set for an entire business that we needed to accomplish.

When it was time to set goals for my restaurant, I focused on what was referred to as the 80/20. What 20% of the things I wanted to work on would give me the biggest impact that would follow through to the other 80%? I started thinking of my life in that way and what I wanted to accomplish. What one or two (or even three) things could I focus on that would ultimately help me to accomplish MORE in this upcoming year and help me to be the better person I truly wanted to be WITHOUT setting too many goals and trying to work on too many things? Because the simple truth is that the more things you pile on your plate, the less thoroughly they all get taken care of.

Some of the things I want to accomplish this year include having more patience with the children. I want to remember that they are children and just let them "be" and not get so frustrated. Goofy, procrastinating, whatever it happens to be at that time. I also want to work on remembering that I am my own person, and to be happy for and with my family, I need to make sure I take care of me, too. I want to work on relationships with certain friends and loved ones. Some are thoroughly broken, some are slightly damaged, and some are only superficial, and there could be more depth to them. I want to remember to take time to find the joy in the journey and not always be so obsessed with what the end result of something is. And the last one I'll mention in my growing list is that I want to work on "Letting go and let God." I always try to control every detail of my and my families lives and try to fix and solve and even anticipate and figure out how I will solve every "potential" problem that may arise. I lose sleep, I stress, I don't eat, I make list after list, etc... I make plans and back up plans and then back up plans for my back up plans. It is exhausting!!

As you can see, I have quite the list of things that have crossed my mind that I would like improved. So I think it only made sense to try to figure out what REALISTICALLY I could work on that might hopefully impact the most things. And after a few days of contemplation, it hit me, and I couldn't believe that I didn't see it before. God. Improving my relationship with Him would flow into each and every aspect of what I talked about.

Not too long after getting pregnant with Jazmine (who was a planned pregnancy) the "world" fell out from under us, so to speak. We thought we were finally back up on our feet after a few years of serious struggling, so we decided to start a family, and then everything crumbled again. My faith at that time kept me positive, it helped keep my husband positive, and it kept us happy. Without my faith I am not sure what would of been, and I am not sure I want to know. However, somewhere in the middle of trying to run mine and my children's lives since then, I forgot that I am not the one that needs to be in control. I am fickle, I guess you could say, in letting God be in control. I do everything I can all by myself these days, and only stop to pray and ask for help from Him when I am about to be crushed by the burdens I am carrying. We still have been going to church because we found one that we love here in town, but I don't feel the connection with the Lord I once felt.

My resolution for 2009 is to work on my faith and trust in the Lord. I want to truly let him into my life and to STAY in control in my life. So though I am not a new believer, and have been raised in a Christian home and gone to church most of my life, I have made a point to ask the Lord into my life once more. I want to reopen my heart to Him. I feel a passion again that has been missing for a little while.

Asking Him back into my life will help me to start being a better person. It will help me with patience, it will help me with love and understanding in my other relationships, it will make it easier to be willing to stand back and let Him steer my life. I will hopefully be able to realize that He has a plan, though it may not always seem apparent to me, and I just need to TRUST.

So after many days of contemplating, after writing list after list after list, and after typing my longest entry in my blog EVER, I have realized the ONE thing that will give me the biggest impact. The ONE thing that will help me to make the most out of this year without overloading myself. Through the Lord I can improve all I hope to improve.

A look back at 2008

As the New Year really gets going this week, I decided I wanted to take a look back on what 2008 was like.

~We moved from Washington (where we had been all our lives) to Oregon
~Jazmine turned two and Isaac turned one.
~Isaac started walking and talking and Jazmine suddenly turned from my baby girl to a little girl
~Got reconnected with friends from highschool
~Found a new church we fell in love with
~Left both Isaac and Jazmine in daycare at the church for the first time ever
~Formed new friendships and really started to turn Salem into our "home"
~Spent the summer with family visiting us
~I started working again, but am lucky enough to be able to still keep the children with me
~Took the children to the Pumpkin Patch for the first time...also my first time since I was old enough to remember
~The children went Trick-or-Treating for the first time (Isaac as a pumpkin, Jaz as a bumblebee)
~Elected a new President that I am so very excited and passionate about for the first time since I was old enough to vote
~Had our first Thanksgiving in Oregon at Lenny's cousin's house
~Planned on having our first ever Christmas without tons of family around
~Had a huge winter storm that had us without power for days, so we spent Christmas with friends and it was wonderful

I am excited to see what 2009 will bring. The last year had plenty of challenges and heartbreak, like I think almost every year usually holds in store, but maybe, just maybe, 2009 will have a few less. :)