I know people (and it's mostly women that ask) mean it as a compliment but I never know what to say. Whatever I come up with in my head at the moment sounds wrong, so I try to deflect or smile or try to deny that I get lots of things done or change the subject entirely.
ripening blueberries (which I recently covered with bird netting)
Here are some of the thoughts that came to mind....
~ It's one thing for me to look around and wish that things were more organized or cleaner or that the garden was less weedy or that the produce on my back stoop would process itself. I can even put things on a list (either a mental one or a paper one). But it's another thing all together to actually do it. Sometimes I feel lazy. Sometimes I want to spend time doing something else. But if I want it to get done, I have to do it. It sounds super simple, but it's huge, friends. Nike is on to something. Just do it. This mentality doesn't work for everyone, but it works for me.
a rare photograph of me at work (courtesy of Miriam)- weeding the blueberries and trying desperately to work on my farmer's tan
~ I am pretty obsessive about completing things. If I start a project, just try to stop me. Oh, don't get me wrong- I get interrupted like the dickens- but whatever I'm working on is like a magnet, pulling me back until it's done. I don't know if this is a nature or nurture kind of
~ I don't do it alone. Jamey is a true partner in life and plays a big role in everything running smoothly around here. The jobs and chores around here are divided up, usually based on our skill level. Also, I haven't picked up toys in YEARS. Training your kids to help out around the house from a young age is so important. They are a great help to me. Eight hands stringing snow peas make it go so much faster than only two!
~ I'm a homebody. This is a major part of how/why I can get a lot done. Could I do everything if I was out running around every day? No way. It's a choice our family has made. In order for things to run smoothly and for everything to get done, we have to be home most of the time. This doesn't mean we never leave, but we're careful how we decide what we'll commit to or leave the house for. There's no right and wrong here. There are pros and cons to both. Just don't expect to get as much done if you're not home on the ranch (so to speak). Working moms, you AMAZE me. I honestly have no idea how you get done what you do.
Sam reading behind our mound of wineberry bushes
~ Chaos and disorder make me unhappy. If I'm unhappy I snap at my children, I'm ungrateful to my husband and I have trouble thinking about anyone else. I know what works for me and that is to put in the hard work, time and effort that it takes to do the things that lead to a happy home (for us- each family is different) . I'm making a choice if I chose to slack off and become unhappy in this way.
~ My kids are older. Granted, the youngest is four but four is OLD compared to two-day, three-week, and four-month olds. If you still have littles to take care of, don't you dare compare yourself to anyone else! Your job (as wonderful and as sometimes monotonous as it may seem) is to take care of them (and yourself). The only reason I got done what I did the summers of 2009 and 2010 (when Miriam was a newborn and one-year-old) was because Jamey had summer break and was home to help!
Older kids mean more freedom to start (and finish) projects. It will happen. They will grow up. And it's okay to both miss it AND be thankful for it.
~ And last, but certainly not least..."I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (Philippians 4:13). What would I do without my Lord and Savior?! I would be lost. All my efforts and my life take on a whole new meaning and purpose when I recognize that I am on this earth for a reason- to glorify God and to extend love to others. "We love because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19). The miracle of it all is that I did nothing to deserve His love and grace except to believe (and He loved me before that, too!). His love is fuel to finish this race and finish it the best I can.
So. That's me and the combination of reasons and circumstances that allow me to do what I do. The next time someone asks me, they may just have to pull up a chair and, more than likely, soon they'll probably regret that they asked in the first place. Pin It