Tag Archives: life

JUST ONE WEEK… only 7 more days… (YIPPEE)

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Summer break is nearly over. 

Did you survive?

Did you thrive?

For our family it is a toss-up!  We had some fun travels, spent a month rotating the flu (which I never succumbed to… another sign that God designed mothers very well) and we had a whole lot of busyness.  Sure, we had sweet moments of playing together (and not fighting), swimming and seeing sights.

But now we are a week from school starting and we are at a fevered-pitch of burnout of all this togetherness, 3 kids (and a mom) full of nerves for a new year to begin and too much togetherness (YES – I mentioned that twice).  I know that this sounds like I am being way too personal or real, but I am just calling a spade a spade.  We are READY!  Well, we are READY or NOT to get this year moving along.

It has become so crazy at times that I can’t even spend 2 minutes alone without crimes against The Geneva Conventions being committed.  (That works for kids too, right?)  The injustice occurs when I am barely out of sight.  Then they have to follow protocol and report the crime against all humanity and especially themselves IMMEDIATELY.  No matter where we are from one another I hear my name called with a shrill and sometimes the overwhelming/choking/gagging tears.  This call sometimes happens when I am in sight.  But usually it is when I am in the bathroom.  (YES – I said it)  Then they proceed to talk to me through the door.

I don’t know about you, but this makes me lose it!!  The sounds of uncontrollable crying of one to three children, the yelling of enough circumstantial evidence that they could conduct an on-the-spot trial and I can’t forget the gnashing of teeth towards one another can make a mom go crazy.  And all I have to protect me is  a one-inch hollow door and a flimsy door knob lock.  It is enough to make my insides boil.  After a summer of requesting 2 minutes alone until I can come out and process the crime with my full attention, I have come up with a new policy in our home and I have posted it for all in the land to see.

 

If there is no...FIRE, or BLOOD loss, or ALIEN INVASION... IT CAN WAIT UNTIL  YOUR MOM IS OUT OF THE BATHROOM!!

If there is no…FIRE,
or BLOOD loss, or
ALIEN INVASION…
IT CAN WAIT UNTIL
YOUR MOM IS OUT
OF THE BATHROOM!!

It has been up one week and it is definitely helping.  I am praying it will continue to lessen as school is in session and our time for togetherness is a little less.  This is what it has come down to in our home.  How about you??

Please tell me what you think or if you have any ideas for 3 children to allow for 2 minutes of privacy I am all ears!

Feel free to print our your own copy for your bathroom door(s).  Yes – you see a plural on that… I have two posted and both help!

If you can relate and feel others can too as we head into this last stretch to school, please share this along.

We all deserve a good laugh and for some reasons as moms we want others to understand us, but we have a real hard time being the real us to others.  This is me today with one week to go.  And yes, 2.5 months ago at the beginning of summer I wrote a sweet piece about not wanting summer to go too quickly.  I still feel that way… but again summer break has proven that all good things come to an end… AND WE ARE READY!

We are in this together – – let’s claim back our 2 minutes!!

Praying for your 2 minutes and mine without ceasing!

Kristin

The PROUD mom of a 5th grader, 2nd grader and 4 year old preschooler

amazing grace…

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I usually don’t get interrupted during the singing part of bedtime.  It seems to be my kids favorite part.  After we pray for everyone in our family, including pets by name and a list of emergency responders, plus Kaylee added years ago anyone who needed a hug and a kiss, I sing.  For ten years, I have sung each child “their” song two times through.  I have sung Amazing Grace to Kaylee almost every night of her life and even on nights when Daddy put her to bed.  It is her song and I picked it to be her song, because it was her Grandma Ruby’s favorite.  When Ruby passed away ten years ago this November, we found countless versions on CD’s and cassettes and even played two different versions at her funeral. When Kaylee was just a little newborn, I mourned that she wouldn’t know the adoration and affection of her Grandma Ruby.  I wanted her to have a connection even if it was only a song.

Two nights ago at bedtime, my sweet eight-year old daughter stopped me during our nightly singing ritual.  She had reached out and touched my arm as I sang to her.  She said, “Momma, I sure hope that Chad is found, since he is lost.”  My throat closed up, my heart raced and my tears welled up instantly.  She made such a deep connection while I was singing “her song”… Amazing Grace.  Earlier that day, I had shared with her some high-level details about how our community was gathering to find a lost runner.  Our conversation had ended with little discussion, but she had continued to process being lost.

When she heard the line, “I once was lost, but now I am found,” it struck like a gong and impacted her heart greatly.  She showed me how she understands our connection with those in our family and in God’s greater family.  Her tenderness as she asked to pray with me that God would be with Chad until he was found was pure love.  I have witnessed pure love, self-sacrifice and unrelenting spirit this week.  I have been so impressed by the many Spirit-led posts and offerings on the Bring Chad Rogers Home Facebook the past five days.  I think our town of 29,000 (and something) realized how blessed and gifted we are collectively when the Holy Spirit leads us to one another.  No one wanted this ending for the search.  We hoped and prayed for happy news.  Some will question why God would do this, but instead of question I hope they seek stillness and prayer.  To search for their own Amazing Grace with God.

Like Chad Rogers, Ruby left us much too soon with a hole in our family.   And not a day goes by that her name isn’t spoken from my lips with my children.  She would have continued to go bananas for the 4 grandsons she had before she passed and she would have gone ape-wild for her one granddaughter and five more grandsons.  Even with the hole, I find that I can keep her alive to my children.  I mention how she would call Ian “Butch” as  baby or how Rhett and Kaylee have her nail beds or how as a retired junior-high math teacher she would have been delighted to see my children love math.  The hole seems smaller then, but even after ten years I can still remember so many details of her and I want so badly for my kids to grow up knowing their Grandma Ruby loves them all the way from heaven.

I hope and pray for Amazing Grace for Chad’s family that now has a hole like ours, when someone you love leaves too soon.  I hope our community shows the same level of rallying and support the trust fund in Chad’s name to help his family. Please consider donating to the Chad Rogers Memorial Fund c/o US Bank, 1909 W Kansas St. Liberty MO. 64068

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Ah… February…

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February is my crossroads month

February is my crossroads month

 

 

Usually around February my known world gets shook up. Here is the run down on my significant Februarys.

February 1998: I was selected as a new sales employee for Fred Pryor Seminars, a training company. I didn’t graduate until May, but they were willing to wait for me to finish and join the team. This plan allowed the usual senior job crisis to not effect me. I truly loved my capstone classes and time with my friends. The fact I was joining an organization that was based on life-long learning was an amazing step.

February 2003: I had been home for five of my twelve weeks of maternity leave with Ian. I crunched numbers and prayed. We decided that with my previous schedule and Amon’s new work travel each month, I needed to be home. I felt like I was betraying my wonderful boss and all my faithful clients in exchange for the unknown, spit up and no sleep. How we were going to pull off this big, unplanned for step was intimidating. (I guess we pulled it off… it has been 10 years as of 2/4/13)

February 2007: I gave in and we purchased a one-year old orange mini-van and added our then two car seats. (Ian was 5 and Kaylee was 2.5) I knew that day our van, our home and our hearts needed another Wooldridge. More praying and listening. Rhett was born June 2009 and helped fill our mini-van, home and hearts in unmeasurable ways.

February 2010: I did my best to support my dear friend during her loss and my mom as she faced chemotherapy for breast cancer. I became a basket case. I had major times of doubt and questioned my faith in the same moment, I prayed for God to be with those I loved dearly. Now my friend and mom are my biggest cheerleaders to this day.

February 2012: I felt like God was putting many different encouraging voices in my path that guided, nudged and urged me to apply for the CREATE Masters of Divinity program at Central Baptist Theological Seminary in Shawnee, KS. More praying, worrying and doubting flooded my days. I pushed through it and applied even though I was terrified. I know my steps were guided and I was accepted to the fully scholar-shipped program.

February 2013: In two more class I will have finished my first of three years for my masters. Balance, commitment, and family are the three guides for my life now. It is fulfilling, challenging and divine. And completely unexpected. It keeps working out.

I didn’t know how it would work out each February, but looking back it speaks volumes to believing God will provide a path for me. My heart always leaps a little for February and I hope it always does. I hope you can find your month of calling and for you to see you have already been guided divinely or will be soon.

Love and Blessings to you and your families.

Kristin

PS – I felt compelled to share this note with you.  I wrote it for the MOPS@2BC February 2013 newsletter.  I hope if you read it earlier, you can feel a clearer stirring of your own month.

So much…

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I often hear the following:

“I don’t know how you do it all.”

“You should learn to say no.”

“I see you coming and going all the time.  Aren’t you exhausted?”

“Just watching you buzz around makes me exhausted.”

I’ll be honest sometimes it stings.  I do have a lot of plates spinning.  And sometimes I am not sleeping much.  My “extra” things are keeping me up late.  It is the soft footsteps padding down the hall from my sweet three-year old at 3:00 a.m.  And yes, I could have a big production of the injustice of getting out of bed to tuck him back in, but I’ve noticed that his current level of “momma need” is fleeting.  My gig is to be his “person.”

Being his “person” reminds me of a great line from the show, Grey’s Anatomy from a couple years back.

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It is a different kind of “person” than the friendship described on that show.  But it still stands true.  I am his “person” and I will always be.  I am actually 3 smaller people’s “person” and one adult’s.

I try to not lose myself in all the doing, going and being.  It is a lot of ever-changing, coaching, and communicating.  I could use a nap just thinking about it all.  We all know that there isn’t time for that. 🙂  I keep my plates spinning and my people happy. (most of the time)  I am enjoying this phase of motherhood, family, MOPS Leadership, and master’s classes more than any other time yet.  It is freeing to have all these parts to my life and I am thankful for all the plates to spin.  Some days it seems like everything is falling apart and plates are crashing by the crate full.  Those are the days that stick out when some one comments about the business of my busy-ness.  It cuts a little, but I know that this crazy season is what I am in for now and it is a good thing I love it.

I am thawing out… shaking… but thawing out…

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It has been a while… Too long of a while actually. Life came ahead of blogging and writing. And I promise you I lived quite a bit of life since my last blog post on November 10. (ouch, really?)

And to be honest with you, the living was busy, fun and at times plain old nutty. I would think, “oh I should write about this or wouldn’t this be great to share.” BUT then I would get busy again and not connect with myself or you. Even a few good friends have called (me out), emailed, and/or boldly asked on the phone if I was ever going to get back at “it”. Shoot… my blog absence was noticed… which made me wonder if it was being missed by others as well. I did need that encouragement because to be honest with myself and you…

FEAR HAD SET IN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It has been a process of self discovery for sure. Ups and downs included… and now FEAR!

The fear part has been there all along and the painful part associated with being open. You probably can relate. I hope. I can’t predict the future or reaction to a decision, choice, viewpoint, or direction… sooooo you FREEZE.

FROZEN in FEAR

Each time I was asked about my blog I felt my fear thawing a little. (and sheer panic set in… good times)

I still have fear in picking this back up again but a friend of mine recently posted something on Facebook that changed my perspective in multiple areas… Thanks Meri for this.

“Sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage.”

And today I got a swift kick in the pants all the way from Alabama. Thanks Janalyn for taking me by the virtual shoulders and giving me a hard shake up to get me going again. She is right… if I have something to say then I am cheating myself and you by not saying it. (thanks for the pep talk… don’t forget to call back to my cell voicemail and leave the entire pep talk again so I can listen at anytime)

This blogs only purpose is to give a forum of faith in real life. And to help others understand that we are all made to need each other more than we will ever realize and that I am not perfect. I don’t have a writing degree. I don’t have a divinity degree. I can offer you what I have… me.

So here’s to a great re-start and to being BOLD to encourage others to live in and out their faith!!!

Special thanks to my cheerleaders: Janalyn, Amy, Karri and Holly.

And as my sweet husband has said since I stopped blogging, “If you would have posted each time you said you shoulda/woulda/coulda post, you wouldn’t have stopped… GO BLOG ALREADY!” (I just love that he loves me and wants to wring my overcommunicative neck sometimes)

BE BOLD!!!

PS- I am going to be keeping my WordPress page but hope to intergrate it with a Facebook page… look for some new things coming… and more blogs!! Send comments or messages to me anytime! This works just like Facebook and I would to hear what you think!!!

Dear God…

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How many times do you start that prayer each day?  How does it sound?  How do you feel after?  Do you pray at all?

I have been thinking a alot about prayer lately.  Especially during my 10 day blogging break.  I will tell you that I am a prayerer.  Is that a word?  I have trained myself over the years to pray first.  Before questioning, planning and freaking out.  Now I will be completely honest with you, I don’t always succeed.  But I do try.

I mostly pray outloud.  You probably could have guessed that about my bold approach to life.  I need to say it out loud.  I am a very verbal person. (since the womb if you ask  my mom)  Probably why I majored in Communication in college.  I can talk.  I can listen too!  And I love to discern and think about things.  But when I pray I just let it all hang out.  It seems easier to just acknowledge the request, praise or concern out loud like I was even on the phone with God.  I just dial him up without a phone in my hand.

It used to be a struggle for me to pray.  I thought there was a formula or that someone could pray better for something than I could.  Now I have had so much practice in my house and van that it just comes.  I think that is because I spend time with God on all things.  Good, bad and the ugly.  I also trust Him.  I know I can’t figure out things as well as He can.  And there is no way that I understand some things that happen.  But I have faith He knows.  He wants me to have a relationship with Him that brings me closer to what He has in store for me.

Every once in a while I can be walking down the hallway by my daughter’s room and I hear her praying outloud.  She doesn’t know I am near. She has learned she can talk to God when she needs to.  Not just over a meal or at bedtimes.  God is there for her no matter what she is doing, facing or thinking.  I am so happy to pass on this habit to my kids.  Even when they get all crazy I pray for them outloud.  Often you can hear me in my house (especially over summer break) spout of, “I am praying for the peace of the Lord for all of you.”  Yes they often stop what they are doing and I add and for me too.  They laugh and tell me crazy thoughts about God laughing at us rough housing in our living room.  It grounds us.  It brings together the connection of our current lives with our heavenly father watching over us.

I know that I am thankful for Facebook for helping me pray more.  I truly do want to pray for others but it is sometimes hard to know what for.  To see a post on Facebook gives me direction on how I can pray for a friend and I want to encourage them by letting them know they aren’t alone.  I know that when I have had harder times in the past that were pre-Facebook, I felt supported by few because there wasn’t an outlet to connect us.  Then when my Mom had breast cancer two years ago, Facebook and her Caring Bridge page kept me going.  I was her PR Manager.  I got to share with others, which then sparked an ongoing conversation with many people and it really helped me feel God’s presence during a storm.  She will tell you it gave this Type A, Get ‘er Done kind of girl some control and purpose.  And she is right.  If I was in prayer and it was shared by the many that followed her site and her ongoing battle it was helpful in my own processing.

If you aren’t praying because you think there is a “right way to do it”, please release that.  God is already in your head and knows it all.  Really ALL of it.  Even the stuff (judgements, criticisms, failures, etc.) that you think you have hidden from everyone.  He knows.  Just speak.  I once told a friend that praying should be like going to the faucet during the day.  Really think about it how many times do you touch a faucet during the day.  What if, really what if, every single time you touched your TAP that you prayed.  Tapping into God starts out of deciding to spend more time with him.  So next time you head to wash your hands, brush your teeth, wash a dish or prepare your food for a meal TAP into prayer.

Psalms 145:18
The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.

Off to pray over my mountain of laundry for my family.  One last note… I used to HATE folding laundry!  But now as I fold I spend time in prayer for each of my family members and I am thankful for our blessings.  Give it a try.  Makes it go faster too!

 

Significant… a reflection on 9-11

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It has been since September 2nd, since I have posted here.  Pure neglect.  My head was overtaken by motherhood and ongoing thoughts and to do’s for MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers).  At first I was a little disappointed that I didn’t make a whole 30 days straight to blog daily.  But I know that is crazy to be so hard on myself.  And that to blog again it needed to be significant…

What is significant is what called me back to post again.  Significant because today is such a hard day of remembering as an American.  I was 25 on 9-11.  A girl by all means.  Sure I was college educated, home owner, working, and married, but when 9-11 happened I was lost like so many.  My big view of being invincible came crashing down around me as those towers crashed and planes fell from the sky.

Like most I vividly remember all that day and for Amon and I our 9-11 story started a few days before.  We returned from a 5 day escape to NOLA (New Orleans) on 9/8.  We had a great time as a young married couple in an amazing city that was pre-Katrina.  It was almost magical except for Amon’s 102 fever right before we left.  Then on 9/10, we returned to work.  My sweet, hard-working yet not currently billable to a big client was asked to turn in his laptop because he was part of a large downsizing at his internationally known consulting firm.  What a blow.  And we thought that was a big and a bad day.

But when I was evacuated on 9-11 from the downtown core due to being close to the new Charles Evans Whittaker Federal Courthouse (named after my great-uncle but that is for another day), I was heading to my Amon.  As I pulled into our 1 car, 2 beds, 1 bath sweet, post WWII Prairie Village house, I knew he was waiting for me.  He received me with his hug and we cried together for hours in front of our t.v.

What I am thankful for that day is that he was already there waiting for me.  Also for what he said that day will always be in my heart.

We had been married for 3 years but had been together as a couple for 6 and were toying with the idea of starting a family God willing.  But on 9-11 I told him in no uncertain terms while sobbing the ugly cry, “That too much is wrong with this world and we shouldn’t ever have children.”

I was pretty adamant and lost.  He took me and hugged me and said to me that isn’t what God wants.  Even with all this tragedy, we have to live on and bring joy into this world.  Or we really have let the enemy win because they have stopped us from dreaming and living.  I cried so hard and knew deep down he was right.

On December 25, 2002 God fulfilled our dream of starting a family.  What a gift and blessing our son has been to us each day.  And when I think of 9-11 I am so thankful that my husband’s faith was strong when mine was lost.

My prayers go to the families and friends who lost thier loved ones so abruptly and tradgicly and to our nation as we remember to live on in honor of them.  God Bless the United States of America.

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Don’t let darkness keep you from dreaming and loving.  Your light can shine through any darkness and by shining you light the path for others to follow.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (NIV)