Best Year Ever? Worst Year Ever?

2017 started out like many years – with me desiring to make the most of my time and energy. So I signed up for Michael Hyatt‘s course Best Year Ever.  I began the year with great goals and high productivity. I was excited about using time blocking to manage my time and increase my results. My personal and professional lives were going along swimmingly.

On April 3rd everything came to a screeching halt. Our daughter and my parents were in a horrific car accident. Thus began a four month ordeal that I will share more about in a future post. I spent weeks at a time in Florida with my family.

Is it?
Aqua Notes Inspiration

In my shower there hangs an Aqua Notes waterproof pad for jotting down great ideas that often come to me first thing in the morning. At the beginning of the year, I wrote on the top sheet “2017 BEST YEAR EVER.” Every time I came home from Florida, that paper would be staring me in the face each morning. I began to wonder if this was the Worst Year Ever.

Although I was tempted to cross out the word “Best” several times with a big X, I did not. I came to see that even in the midst of the worst ordeal of my life, there were still things to be thankful for. I tried to add to my 1000Gifts thankfulness journal. I held on to my faith and searched for moments of serenity amid the stress and exhaustion. I prayed like never before. I sought God and tried to continue to praise Him despite my circumstances.

Jellyfish: Boys of War

CoastHad a lovely walk on the beach this week with our 21, almost 22, year old daughter.  We had to step carefully to avoid the man-o-war jellyfish that had blown up onto the sand in the stiff offshore breeze.  Gen was lamenting the poor creatures demise and particularly the bitty ones that she called ‘boys of war’ who did not even get to survive to adulthood.  They were about an inch in diameter and seemed so fragile, yet are so dangerous.  Her phrase and her empathy made me smile.  Life is precious – even a jellyfish!  This child of mine is passionate about life, about sustainability, about reducing homelessness, about many subjects.  What a joy to share this time by the ocean.  Another day at the beach we giggled uncontrollably as the wind pelted us with tiny stinging grains of sand.  At the pool, we lay in the sun and had a long heart-to-heart.  Connecting with this beautiful young woman who lives so far from us is a rare treat and I cherished our short time together.  Finding serenity together as we laughed, celebrated, reminisced and enjoyed time outdoors.

#optoutside #evenwithboysofwar

No shoes … No service

Saw a funny video online with a dad ranting about how hard it was to get his child to even find, let alone put on his shoes so the family could get out the door.  It took me back …

This one child of mine, who shall be nameless, was always taking off her shoes from the time she was very small.  When she was about nine [read, ‘old enough to know better’], we had two interesting experiences.  One day I got both girls into the car for a trip to the library.  You remember nine year olds – they dress themselves, put on their own seat belts, and hopefully brush their own teeth.  At the time we lived out in the country and it was about a 25 minute drive into town to get to the library.  So, off we went, having an uneventful ride.  We arrived at the library and piled out of the car in the parking lot. Whereupon I looked down at her feet and we both realized she had no shoes on.  Library trip cancelled.

Do you think that disappointment was enough to help her remember such basic things as shoes?  No, a few months later, we went off to the grocery store. Picture the same kids loaded into the minivan, and the same 20 minute drive to the grocery store (it was a little closer).  And there we are in the parking lot with no shoes.  This time I decided she had to wait in the car.  There were a few essential groceries needed if we were going to eat.

Some moms would, I suppose, have at least let a child go into the library with no shoes (but not the grocery store – yuck!).  Not this mom – too many things could go wrong in bare feet.  Not the least of which was they would be filthy.  Hopefully now that she is an adult, she has outgrown some of her forgetfulness; but thankfully she has not outgrown that carefree spirit.