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Posts Tagged ‘end of summer’

LeafFall1

This is it,

the last hurrah

the windup

the last supper

the culmination

the end of summer, as we have known it.

And, for many, Tuesday marks the beginning of another school year (of course there are those who have already been at it for weeks).

I never feel fully ready to leave home for school (as an Educational Assistant) until I can leave the house in order (and crock pot plugged in), with a plan for survival of the upcoming school year.

Today, in the guest post by Ann Voskamp (through (in)courage.me), I get to share a plan that might just help me, and us, not just survive the school year, but thrive!

If we can remember even one of these truths I think we might just be conquerors of the chaotic!

But, as for me, I’m printing this out and posting on my fridge, maybe even my bathroom mirror, and in my bag that goes to work with me.

Enjoy Ann’s suggestions for 10 Ways To Be A Happier Mom:

“1. Life is not an emergency. 

Life’s a gift.
Just. Slow. Down.

 

2. Now is not a forever grace but amazing grace. 

Do whatever it takes to wake to wonder right here.

 

3. Sometimes the slowest way is the fastest way to joy. 

Make time today, even a moment, to read Scripture and memorize it.

Without the lens of His Word, the world warps.

{Slowest=fastest to joy}

 

4. Laughter is the cheapest, holiest medicine. 

Preschoolers laugh 300 times a day. Aim for double that. Tickle someone, (yourself!), if necessary. This is good!

 

5. Motherhood is a hallowed place because children aren’t commonplace. 

Co-laboring over the sculpting of souls is a sacred vocation, a humbling privilege.

Never forget.

 

6. Homemaking is about making a home, not about making perfection

A perfect home is an authentic, creative, animated space where Peace and Christ and Beauty are embraced.

{Perfect does not equate to immaculate.}

 

7. A pail with a pinhole loses as much as the pail pushed right over. 

A minute dawdled here, a minute scrolling here — they can add up to your life.  Write down your intentions for the day and prayerfully live the intentions and spend your life well by paying attention to the moments — which pays thanks to God.

A whole life can be lost in minutes wasted, small moments missed.

 

8. Believe it: I have all I need for today.  

The needs of our day are great but our God is greater and we call Him Providence because we believe: He is the One who always provides.

{And when God provides, He should be praised, and if God always provides, shouldn’t praise always be on the lips?}

 

9. Slow. Children at play. 

The hurry hurts the kids.

Time’s this priceless currency and only the slow spend it wise enough to be rich.

If we had to actually buy our time, would we spend it more wisely — spend it more slowly?

{God’s Word never says Hurry Up. God words only whisper: Wake Up.}

 

10. Love is patient. 

Parenting’s this gentle way of bending over in humility to help the scraped child up because we intimately know it takes a lifetime to learn how to walk with Him.

Patience. Love always begins with patience and patience is a willingness to suffer.

 

Bonus: 

The art of really celebrating life isn’t about getting it right — but about receiving Grace

The sinners and the sick, the broken, the discouraged, the wounded and burdened — we are the ones who get to celebrate grace!

Regardless of the mess of your life, if Christ is Lord of your life, than we are the celebrants out dancing in a wild rain of grace — because when it’s all done and finished, all is well and Christ already said it was finished.”

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Two weeks from today summer will really be over. There will be great mourning and gnashing of teeth in our home. It will be with great regret that our alarms will be set, lunches will be made, and the trek to school will be taken.

As I contemplate all that this day means, I also think back …  w  a  y  back  … to when I was school student. I remember the new clothes (brand new fall/winter sweaters when the temperatures are often still reflecting the summer season), the new shoes (which always came home not so white, and feet requiring bandages for the new shoe blisters), the crisp clean lined Hilroy notebooks, the line-up at the pencil sharpener (because we all had new pencils), and the revelation of who would be our classroom teacher for the school year.

Just one month ago I was driving down a highway in Oregon, listening to a radio station, and they started talking about back to school. I just about drove into a light standard! Back to school was not something that I wanted to hear about in late July. But what they were saying about returning to school stopped me from doing anything too radical. They were encouraging people, parents, to print off a teacher appreciation certificate and take it to the school on the first day, as an act of supporting and encouraging the teachers of their children.

Now that I could get into!

I have tried over the years to be supportive to the classroom teachers of my kids. Working within the school system gives me an even more intimate understanding of just how appreciated (and, for those teaching high school, rare) words, acts and gifts of encouragement are to these teachers who spend more time with our kids each day than we do.

I think all of us can think back to at least one teacher who inspired us to live better, think differently, and who encouraged us in who we are.

Immediately I think back to my grade four teacher, Mrs. Kavanaugh, who was so kind … to everyone in the class. The thing I remember most about her is how she treated the ‘underdogs’ of the classroom. She was more patient with them than any other teacher. She gave them extra words of encouragement. She did not favor the smartest, the prettiest, the richest. You know, I do not remember one academic thing she taught us, but I think I took away something better, because she gave me the tools to be a better person.

She was not the only teacher that I think of, but she is the one who comes to my mind first.

How about you? Do you remember a special teacher? How about taking the challenge to encourage a teacher as your children return to classrooms, gymnasiums, and libraries? How about starting the parent-teacher relationship off with an act of  encouragement, of love?

It just might set the stage for a great year for your son or daughter, for their teacher, and for you.

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