Whining or Winning?

I have decided to turn the whining of my family in to a win. For example, when I say we are going to a museum for a family activity, all of my boys tend to start whining. As their mom, I know that one of the best things I can do for my family is open their eyes to new experiences. I can take them places they wouldn’t normally choose to go, to learn things they wouldn’t learn otherwise.

Now, my husband is NOT thrilled when I suggest these things, but thankfully I do the same thing with him that I do with my kids…

I replace their whining words with my own.

For example if my kids say, ” I can’t believe you’d MAKE us go do something so stupid! You obviously hate me if you don’t let me stay home and hang out with my friends!!”.

I translate that in to a winning response and reply, “What I just heard you say was, Thank you, mom, SO MUCH, for broadening my horizons and taking me places I might not have thought to go!”.

Then my husband will say something like, “I can’t believe you are forcing them to go with you. Just let them stay home and do whatever they want.”.

What that translates into is, “I am so thankful you allow us to do things with you. That you have the strength to push through all of our whining and be a great mom to our kids. I love you and your determination.”.

At this point, you might be thinking this is craziness. Or you might think it won’t work for me and that is okay. This works for ME.

When I verbalize the things above, and other ways of responding in a way I wish happened, it changes the feel of the conversation.

I remember that this won’t last forever.

I remember that I only have my family for a limited amount of time.

I remember I am their mom and they love me, even if they aren’t showing it in the moment.

I remember, these are memory making times.

I remember the days are long and the years are short.

How can you protect your heart when you KNOW you are doing the best thing for your family.

What I learned today…Look for the best in all situations. You can find good, or push through knowing, the negative will end. Be patient and do your best to be the best YOU you can be.

You are not responsible for what they say….but how you react to it.

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Teenage Tantrums

Do you have wise people around you? Do you listen to them?

One of the wise people around me said something in a short 5 minute conversation that made me sad, mad and glad.

I was talking about a tough week I had had with one of my teens. His reply was, “Huh. It is great to watch God having you go through this with one of your kids right now, as you are going through the same thing with God.”

Sad – Oh, NO! I do tend to get upset and say, “God, what are you doing?! Don’t you know what will make me happy?” And then wait fairly impatiently for God to do what I want Him too.

Mad – WHAT?!?! I don’t throw tantrums like that! Well, okay, maybe I do. BUT I trust God’s path for me, don’t I? I push and talk to God about what I want, but I do lean on His direction.

Glad – I do. I do lean on God as He moves me through situations that will grow and stretch me. I don’t mind being uncomfortable for HIM.

As it stands, I’m glad someone pointed out the similarities. It helped me remember that God, my Father, has His hands full with me. I do go to Him with my fears and worries, and though it might take me awhile sometimes, I do walk the path He is putting in front of me.

What I learned today…I feel a change is coming. I don’t know what it is, but I know who is directing it. Whether I like it or not, the whole point of my life is to do what God is asking me to do…and pray I like it. 🙂

Describe Yourself in 3 Words

I live in a house FULL to the brim of testosterone. With a husband, 2 teens and a tween, it can get loud and rambunctious to say the least. At their ages, it’s a time where they could tend to retreat in to their own “social” worlds within their rooms.

I have to consistently and intentionally draw them out to talk. It doesn’t work all that often. What does work, is forcing them to have time together with the family. Now I NEVER thought I’d have to force people to hang out with me as I always thought I had a bit of fun in me. According to my kids, that doesn’t seem to be true.

As I “forced” them to hangout this last weekend, we did the usual. I’ll ask them questions. It could be anything from “What is your favorite color right now”, to “What is your favorite movie of the moment”. This weekend, I took a stack of TABLETOPICS with me as I wasn’t in the mood to come up with my own questions.

One of the questions was Describe Yourself in 3 Words. Have you ever done that? Have you done it recently?

Keepin’ It Real

This will probably be TMI (To Much Information) for you, but in the spirit of being honest on this blog, I’ll review my day on Friday.

I woke up a bit late and tried to hurry to get the kids out to school quickly. I ended up behind schedule so, thankfully, my husband took the boys.

I arrived at the meeting I had scheduled on time. It was VERY productive for the first 1.5 hours, until I had gotten a call that took the remainder of our time, so I had to reschedule when I could finish the rest of the tasks that didn’t get accomplished.

From there, I ran back to the office to go over a game plan with a co-worker regarding a difficult discussion that has to happen with one of our amazing volunteers. As soon as I had finished the prayer to end our time together, my phone let me know my girlfriend had arrived to drive me up to another friend’s husband’s memorial. My heart broke as the room filled to remember this husband who left 3 beautiful kids and an wife who inspires me with her faith.

When the memorial was closing, I noticed my phone had 12 missed calls and a boat-load of text messages. The first text I saw was from my son asking me to please hurry and call the school. The second from a woman on my team stating the school had called and my oldest was hurt.

I quickly called the school to find out my son had been hit by a door and had a black eye, which was swelling shut, a fair amount of blood and he was very dizzy. I asked if they had tried my husband to hear had been trying to reach him for an hour and a half!

Needless to say, I hurried out of the memorial, to pick up my son. On the way I checked to see where my husband’s phone was…at home! After calling it a few times, I started praying, “Lord, please have him be okay. He isn’t answering, and I ask that he is healthy and not hurt.”

I arrived at the school, found the nurse and saw my son. It looked like he had been punched in the eye…so I asked WHO “door” was. The nurse replied that she had verified it was a door that had hit him, so I nodded, and took my son to the car.

On the way to the car I asked, again, “Who is “door”. He let me know that they were messing around and his friend accidently knocked him in the face with a spear. Yes…you read correctly…a spear. (Another Mom Of Boys moment.)

We arrived home and I ran inside. Music was blaring, so I yelled for my husband. He replied, “Hey!”. He looked completely healthy and happy so…I…

Let’s hold on a second so I can let you know…I used to talk like a trucker. I would cuss anytime and all of the time. Until I read in multiple areas in the Bible it is not something we should do. So I stopped. I still say things like “Crap” and throw in a “freaking” every now and then, but I have changed a thousand fold. My kids would FREAK OUT if they heard me cuss, as it just doesn’t happen in our house.

Now back to the day…

After my wonderful husband, who wasn’t hurt on the floor, no where near his phone, responded, “Hey!”…I yelled, “WHAT THE #@$*! Our son is hurt and the school has been trying to call you!” Again, needless to say, my son had a look of shock on his bruised and bloody face at hearing his mom let loose.

My poor husband ran down to find his new phone had “no interruptions on” and he had no idea anyone was trying to get ahold of him.

I set my son up on the couch with ice and love, then had to run back out to visit a wonderful volunteer in the hospital before heading back to work. As I was pulling out of the drive-way, my husband came out to give me a kiss. I rolled my eyes, like “Are you KIDDING ME?!?” to which he replied “Aren’t you glad I don’t have a broken neck from putting away Christmas decorations and falling?”.

Sigh, perspective. Yes. I was very glad he was okay. I had prayed asking God for him to be okay and not hurt when I got home. Instead of praising God for everything being okay, I let my anger and mouth get the better of me.

The rest of the day, I did my best to shake off the frustration that kept nagging at me and kept reminding myself of all the prayers I send to God, that He answers without me thanking Him. All the prayers that He answers, that I have already forgotten about as there is something new I need, or I’m frustrated with, or I’m focusing on.

What I learned today… I am fickle with God. I need to remember to consistently give Him thanks for all He does for me. I am so thankful I can go to Him with my good and bad. And I HAVE to not slide back into foul language.

Colossians 3:8 “But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.”