Monday, January 9, 2012

Capture Gratitude (1000 Gifts)


“There is no event so common place but that God is present within it, always hidden, always leaving you room to recognize Him or not to recognize Him.”  Fredrick Buechner

20. Kairos moments
I read a blog post today and it really resonated with me: Don't Carpe Diem (click the link to read). Also: Hilarious. She talks about how hard it is to follow the advice EVEYRONE gives to moms of young ones, "Enjoy every moment because they grow up so fast."  I try so hard to live in each moment and thank the Giver of all moments - but sometimes the noise and chaos are just too much for me.

The gist (and you really should go read the whole thing, especially if you're a mama to littles):
There are two different types of time. Chronos time is what we live in. It’s regular time, it’s one minute at a time, it’s staring down the clock till bedtime time, it’s ten excruciating minutes in the Target line time, it’s four screaming minutes in time out time, it’s two hours till daddy gets home time. Chronos is the hard, slow passing time we parents often live in.

Then there’s Kairos time. Kairos is God’s time. It’s time outside of time. It’s metaphysical time. It’s those magical moments in which time stands still. I have a few of those moments each day. And I cherish them.
I think that just about sums up why I've enjoyed doing these Capture Gratitude posts (and counting gifts in general.) It helps me step outside of Chronos, into Kairos.

I had a Kairos moment this week, reading this book to MM:

It's called "Thank You God", and I read it to MM every single day (several times a day) while we were on our own in Uganda.

Now that we're home, he sits and "reads" it to himself frequently, and he still wants it read to him just about every night.

"God made moon and God made sun, God then made the stars for fun. Thank You God for what You've done. Amen." Amen indeed.

I had a moment a few nights ago where I was just transported back to reading that book to M on the bed at our guesthouse. WAITING. Trying to thank God for everything, but also really wanting to be HOME. And here we are. SO THANKFUL.

(Also...for the first time, this week MM noticed that the little boy in this particular picture looks like him. And he and Tobin just got stars for the ceiling in their room for Christmas. So now MM points to the darker boy and says "MICAN!" (that's Micah Marvin for short :D). He points to the blonde boy and says "BOBIN!" and to the dog and says, "DUDWY!" Makes my heart happy.)

21. Long awaited gifts
I decided a while ago that I'd like to start collecting Fiestaware. The dishes we use every day were ones that Matt & Julie got for their wedding however many years ago (sorry... I can't remember how long they were married.  But Matt & I have been married for 6.5 years, and Julie died 2 years before that... and they'd been married 7 or 8 years? They were from Pottery Barn and got lots of use.) I got some every day dishes when we got married, but they were from Target, and haven't held up well at all. (So Pottery Barn > Target.)

Anyhow... It's taken me a while because I've only used gift money or received them as gifts. A few sets last year (which then sat in our garage waiting for friends), and finished off this year. Well. Sort of finished off. One of the gifts I received was bought at Kohl's - and the set that Kohl's sells is different than all the others I received (it has a teacup and saucer instead of a mug.) So I returned that, but Kohl's would only give me store credit and they don't carry the mugs. So... I have 7 place settings of Fiestaware, and $25 at Kohl's. But I'm happy.

I've had these out for a week, and each time I've had my coffee from one of the fiesta mugs, I've been strongly reminded of drinking delicious coffee from a fiesta mug at Uncle Jon and Aunt Terry's. Aunt Terry was the giver of several of my fiesta sets, so I think of her fondly, and miss Uncle Jon with each cup.

22. Time to do things I love
This is still in pretty short supply. BUT I have tried to work hard at the things that MUST be done, so that I can have some time for things I want to do.

One of those things is sewing - I bought inexpensive plush blankets as the boys' bedspreads, thinking that I would make small quilts for them to have at the bottom of their beds. Then we got our court date, and all but the necessary was put aside.

Little by little, I've been working on the boys' quilts, and it makes me happy. They're very simple, and could probably be finished in one day, if I had a whole day to give. Since I've just worked on them occasionally during nap time or weekend nights, it's slow going.  (But: don't be impressed, these are my first quilts, and they're so simple I hesitate to even call what I'm doing quilting. But there is batting between 2 layers of fabrics, so technically.....)

23. Being outside

Had some work that HAD to be done last week - and when your boss is your husband and you don't actually get paid, it's kind of hard to be motivated. I found that drinking iced coffee and working outside (again - nap time) did the trick. Thankful for the opportunity for some sunshine (and iced coffee!) in January.

24. Organization

I'm going to do a whole post on my organization efforts and decluttering, but I couldn't leave this off my gift list. Because I am SO ENJOYING putting things in order! I only wish I'd thought to take before pictures, because the bottom of my closet was a MESS. I had one of those metal shoe racks with bars,which was all bent out of shape from the kids playing house in my closet. There was just a mess of shoes in there. I got rid of tons of shoes, and put in this organizer and I LOVE IT.  We have a sliding door closet, and not much closet space at all. I thought it was just hopeless, because every time I got things in order, they just got messed up again. But I think this time the organization will keep.