Tag Archive | motherhood

Enough

Lately I’ve been thinking about the question “Am I enough?”  This is brought on in part from preparing for our next MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meeting next week.  The topic for the meeting is “Courage to Forget Comparisons (You are Enough).

As a mommy of 4 tiny kiddos (all under 5) I look at my disaster of a house.  I hear other moms talk about working and caring for their kids, leading groups and attending the YMCA every week.  Taking their kids to soccer camp and school.  Just listening to all they are a part of and how they “keep it together” and keep their houses clean and what not makes my head hurt.  I can’t do it.  I can’t do all of that and stay sane or even be fun to be around.  When I do too much, I’m exhausted…and grouchy.  I don’t like the words that come out of my mouth, especially toward my children.

A couple weeks ago, I had the privilege to get away for a weekend in the mountains with some other mommy friends.  Late one night, we sat down and watched ”
Mom’s Night Out.”  We laughed as we watched the outrageous scenario unfold as 3 moms go out on the town for a nice supper, but instead find themselves searching the city for a missing baby, and end up at the jailhouse because of miscommunication (or none at all!)  As the main character, Allie, sits in the lobby of the police station talking to Bones, a tattoo artist and biker, she opens her heart to him and says “I’m just not enough!”

His response was filled with wisdom and truth.  He said “You’re not enough for who? the kids, Sean (her husband)….or not enough for you? … Y’all spend so much time beating yourself up – must be exhausting. Let me tell you somethin’, Sweetheart. I doubt the good Lord made a mistake giving your kiddos the mama he did. You just be you – he’ll take care of the rest.”

You can watch the whole scene here

Wow…How often do I look at what everyone else is doing as a mom and think, “I should be able to do that!”  I’ve come to realize that I can’t do everything that other moms do.  If they can do it, great!  But with what I hold dear, the things that are important to me as a mom, I can’t do everything else. Each of us has different strengths and weaknesses, things that we are awesome at, values we hold dear.

In our family, we value being together.  For us, that involves homeschooling, family dates, and evenings at home.  In order to hold to this, we can’t fill our calendar with all kinds activities.  Those things are awesome, helpful, educational, and bonding, but we have chosen something different for our family.  so how can I compare myself with families who are so different to begin with? I am enough!

Why? “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10

We are Christ’s workmanship…His masterpiece! That makes you enough.  The King of Heaven and earth calls you His handiwork!  He makes you enough.  That’s enough for me!

“I’m a mess, but I’m a beautiful mess.  I’m His masterpiece.  And that’s enough!”  ~Allie, Mom’s Night Out

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Homemade blocks

We don’t buy a lot of toys for our children.  Most of what we have has been given to us.  We have tons of toys, but the most special ones are the ones we make ourselves.  Other than the special doll and the legos, the homemade toys are the ones that are played with the most.  So when I found this idea for homemade nature blocks from Adventure in a Box on Pinterest, I had to try it out right away.  My kids don’t have any blocks except legos, so I thought this would be perfect.

After lunch today, I went out back to our pile of fallen branches from the yard and gathered a few that I thought would be interesting.  I started with a hand saw and miter box and tried to cut different sizes of blocks from the branches.  I hadn’t told my children what I was doing, but as my 4 year old son stood watching me he got super excited and said “Mommy, we could build something with those!” I love the creativity that flows when children are presented with new objects!

After a while, my arms ached and I was starting to get frustrated with my saw getting stuck in the wood.  So I stopped.  I handed my creations to my son.  He piled them in a bucket, took them in the house, and immediately set to work.  My little engine came up with this.  He proudly told me it was a monster truck.

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Then he excitedly asked me “Mommy, can you make more?”

This time I took my branches to the garage and turned on my sliding chop saw.  Within a couple minutes I had a set of 50+ blocks for my children to play with.  They were ecstatic.

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After more than an hour, I finally sent my 3 year old to bed while my son continued to play for another 30 minutes or more.

Here is a sampling of the different types of blocks I cut.

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Long ones, skinny ones, joints, half rounds…so simple, yet so much fun.  It is best to use DRY branches for these. Look for interesting pieces of bark or oddly shaped or varying branches and within a short time, you have your own blocks.  Some may need a little sanding to shave off rough edges, but I was impressed at how little time this took. My next step is to put them in the oven for a little while at low heat to kill off any bugs that may have made their home inside my wood.

Have you made any toys for your kids from things found in your backyard?  Leave your ideas in the comments section.
Also, Adventure in a Box is doing a contest with homemade toys from nature that ends September 23.  Check it out here.

Something to offer

As I was driving home last night from a visit to grandma’s house an hour away, the van was quiet.  All three kids were sleeping and I was left with my thoughts.  Since I became a mom, I have had very few responsibilities outside the home.  I can sometimes become overwhelmed by the responsibility of raising 3 small children 4 years old  and under and with another one on the way in May, it is easy to think that any other responsibilities would be overwhelming.  I was thinking about my MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group and several moms I look up to and follow on their blogs, faithfully gleaning as much information and encouragement from them as possible. I watch them lead our MOPS group and think that they are much more qualified for this role than I am.

As I thought of all these things, God gently reminded me that the moms I look up to so much and glean from are just moms like me.  They don’t have a PhD in Mommyhood or a college degree or anything validating them as a mom.  Some of them may be doctors or teachers and have had schooling for those degrees, but no degree really prepares you to be a mom.  These moms I look up to so much have the same, or similar, experiences I do.  It’s the everyday experiences of caring for growing kiddos, the potty training woes, the temper tantrums in the grocery store, and the uptight, strong-willed three year old.  These are the best teachers and while I can glean ideas and methods of raising my kids from other moms and from professionals, I have something to offer to those in my community. Instead of learning and gleaning like a leech, it’s time for me to take some steps to give back to the other moms around me.  Be encouraged moms, you too have something to offer.  You have experiences no other mom has and wisdom to share.  What are ways that we as moms can share the wisdom we have gained with each other?