Day 20: Summer

This staycation keeps getting better!  Who says you need to travel far to enjoy summer vacation?  I still want to go away, but not just yet. 

These two sawed pieces of scrap wood and practiced writing with their new wood burning tool, while I worked from home. I had to come see their work and play a little too. This was fun!!  Charlie painted a sign for his room and Juliana did the lettering for him.

Charlie was craving Vietnamese pho for dinner and Christian wanted Korean BBQ. I told my international kids we could cook together instead of going out and save some money. I had them chopping and dicing and we prepared a bit of both, and stopped at the Korean market to buy a few side dishes to go with our homemade meal, that we enjoyed out on our patio. 

The cool thing about this staycation thing is that the days and nights are long!! We are not in a rush and the crazy thing is that when you’re not rushing, time slows down and we seem to have more time to do all the things we wish to do. It’s really ironic what you can learn when you slow down.

What did you enjoy today? How is your summer going and are you enjoying your moment?

Life is good.

Day 19: Summer

Flowing…going with the flow and being in the moment. That is what I’m doing this week and am loving having the time and space to flow, even though I find it challenging to let go of schedules, expectations and control.

Tonight we ate dinner at 9pm, after Christian prepared it for us. We never eat this late, but tonight this is what flow felt like and we flowed, eating on the couches in the family room sharing crazy, chaotic, interrupted conversations.

Tonight I caught up with an old friend in between drop off and pick up points, because I’ve missed her and was curious enough to text and attempt to connect at the last minute and she said, YES!  This is what flow felt like in the moment of not being too busy! It was great to give her and her girls hugs and to share a few moments together.

I could get used to this perfectly imperfectly unstructured summer and can’t believe we are almost 3 weeks in already. Where does the time go?

Life is good, especially when we flow.


Day 18: Summer

Believe it or not, I am learning to relax in my old age!! 

This is the first summer where we haven’t made “real” plans ahead of time that I can remember. I am practicing going with the flow on a daily basis without a definite plan, which is quite uncomfortable for me, and I’m actually starting to enjoy it.  I feel liberated, unrushed and content just being (home).

I’m getting the hang of working from home and my flexible schedule and its actually manageable and doable! Today I worked for two hours before heading out to yoga with my BFF.  I then did kid logistics and enjoyed a relaxing lunch with my girl before working for two more hours before running out with my daughter to get our eyebrows waxed together!  Bonding at it’s finest!! When we came home, I finished up the last part of my work shift before dinner. I flowed through today and it actually felt good. 

How do you balance work and life like kids and chores and exercise? It’s all doable, just sometimes a little challenging! I’m liking the practice, though!

Hope you’re having a good week!

Pray for Istanbul and our global community that is under attack. We are Istanbul. One Love, you and me.


Day 17: Summer

All these lemons came from the same tree, and this picture made me think of my kids.

You see I’m thankful that I have one large, one medium and one small one.  As the two big ones are growing up and becoming more independent and less needy of me, I still have the small one to grow for a little while longer and this makes me very happy.  Having the little one makes me remember that the big one was once small too and makes me even more aware that the little one is going to get bigger too one day, which makes me be even more present with all three of them. This is an amazing, little, magical gift of three.

Today the little one and I went to the craft store together to get stuff to make stuff. We like to make things together and I love that he is creative. He picked out a wood burning tool and some wood pieces to create some art, even though we were really going in the store to find neon, erasable white board markers that would show up on his metal black board. Luckily we found some of those too on the clearance rack. 

And that’s my happily ever after story for the day.  How was your day?  Did you make lemonade from lemons today?  

Oh, and P.S., This was my way of making lemonade out of lemons today…I was actually momentarily sad about the feeling of letting go and really knowing that my kids are growing up. There’s usually a back story to every happily ever after, isn’t there? Just sayin’

nAMaste BeLoveRs

Day 16: Summer

Tonight they made it home safely along with 69 of their church friends from their service trip to Mexico.

They worked really hard in the hot sun, building houses for 4 days. It was demanding work and they received an IKEA like manual instructing them how to put the homes together. They didn’t get to use power tools and instead cut wood with a hand saw, mixed concrete by hand and learned how to pound nails straight into the planks.

They slept in crowded tents, used stinky outhouses for toilets and helped bathe each other using buckets of cold water that they kept having to refill.  This wasn’t a glamorous trip and it cost a lot of money to participate. And did I mention they had no cell phones with them for a week? They survived. 

And guess what? They didn’t complain. They are tired and sore and happy to be home and thankful for the experience.

I am thankful that our church provides these volunteer opportunities for our youth, so that they can learn to be of service to others, to sacrifice their time and comforts to be giving and loving and in return, they benefit too in so many ways. Juliana walked into our house and said we have a big house! Their perspectives on life are hopefully changed by seeing how other people live and by working hard, side by side with their peers for a few days, sharing a God moment.

I am thankful for the advisors who cared for our kids and treated them like their own and for the deeper relationships that were strengthened through this shared experience.

Life is good!! Love is love is love is!! One Love. Love this life.

Day 15: Summer

My big kids come home from Mexico tomorrow. I have been anxious all day waiting to hear news about how they’re doing and was happy to see a post that they were finally state side. I started nesting again, like I did when I was pregnant with them.  That’s all I wanted to do today and I think that’s weird, but it’s my truth. 

So we folded all the laundry, fixed Juliana’s headboard and decluttered some more. 

I was thankful when Charlie suggested we get out of the house and came up with a plan. He wanted to get frozen yogurt, Japanese snacks and sushi from the Japanese market and take it home to watch a movie together. This combination made me laugh and I loved that I have a kid who loves froyo and sushi. It made for a perfectly relaxing evening and settled my anxiety.

Life is good. What simple thing did you enjoy today? 


Day 14: Summer

Summer is a great time to break routines and schedules and to relax.

I’ve shifted my work hours to the early mornings, so that I can be “done” with my work by noon-ish, which means I am waking up by 5:30am and starting work at 6. So far, I am loving this practice.  

I made a big salad and ate a late lunch outside on the back patio all by myself.  After I was done, I put up the umbrella and decided to rest on the outside sectional sofa, closing my eyes for a half hour in the middle of the day. It felt good to do nothing and I rarely just sit. I loved it, and could get used to this inactivity.

I love summer, especially this second week with the kids away!  Life has been less chaotic and I got to celebrate the moments with less stress.

TGIF – have a great weekend!

Day 13: Summer

When you’re counting the days, you’re more aware of time passing. I feel like the kids just got out of school, but we’re already going on two weeks out. The summer is going to fly by!

My favorite tree has a major broken limb. It’s still beautiful, just the way it is, perfectly imperfect, just like this one beautiful life we are living.


Day 12: Summer – Helping Others

I was excited to see pictures of one of my kids, working with her friends, building homes for the less fortunate people outside of Tijuana, Mexico today. I anxiously watch Facebook for any one of the advisors to post updates to social media. Our kids were not allowed to bring their phones with them on this service trip. I love that they are free to be without any attachments, and can truly be present, doing what they’re doing without any distractions. I can’t wait to hear about this experience from their perspectives. I wonder how they’re feeling half way through the trip. I am feeling proud and am excitedly anticipating their safe return this weekend.

We are watching over a friend’s house while they are on vacation. I am thankful that we have the opportunity to give back and to take care of their home, as they always take care of us when we are away. It’s true what they say about when you’re giving, you’re actually receiving. I loved watching Charlie take the lead, happily watering all the potted plants and picking the ripe, red tomatoes, eating a few here and there.

 I loved that he and I got to take a walk together, and he put his arm around me as we walked down the street arm in arm, almost at equal eye level. I got to see and feel how tall he is getting and loved the shared moment alone, just him and I, walking and working together.

These are the simple days of our summer so far. I’m loving this now.

How are the first few days of your summer going?  I hope you are doing well and living it up, serving others and loving your one, beautiful life.






Day 11: Summer Lovin’

Today we celebrate 19 years of marriage! 

I am thankful that we have never given up, despite the struggles and tribulations! I am thankful for the three kids we’ve created and are raising together, who were born out of love. I am thankful for my husband’s unconditional love and support.

Love is good!