Thursday, January 19, 2012

New Year's Resolutions

To be honest, I've never been into New Year's Resolutions.
It's so contrived, like Valentine's Day. Just because it's a particular time of year, you're suddenly supposed to do these things that you should always be doing.
But the older I get, the more appealing traditions become.
This January snuck up on me, as they all have the past few years. It is no joke that life moves faster the older you get. Being that I am only 30, it makes me quite thoughtful about what is going to happen in my 50s, 60s, etc.
But there is something fresh and new about a new year, and around the 5th, I decided my resolution was going to be to start journaling during my quiet time again.
I have been pretty faithful about reading and studying my Bible every day, but I haven't always gotten a lot out of it. I hear of people who get up before their children do in order to have some quiet time to themselves, but this is impossible for me, especially on work days. On work days, my boys are often not in bed until 9 pm, and then are awake again at 5:30 am. And if I set my alarm for 5 to claim that extra half hour, my co-sleeping 10 month old would be on to me in seconds.
So then I guess there are other people whose children would quietly entertain themselves while they read their Bibles, but again, unashamedly, I say that my children are not among them. Maybe it makes me a bad parent, or maybe it just makes me a mother of two young boys. The pages of my Bible are tattered from The Dude's vigorous hands, and I have to admit that I find it very hard to concentrate on the book of Matthew when Aquaman is screaming "I need a diaper, I have to POOP!" (yes, at 3 years, 4 months, he still screams for a diaper when he has to poop, and yes, it makes me absolutely bananas, and no- no amount of gimmicks or threats or treats have made a difference).
So I'm reclaiming my sanity, because I need the word of God more than ever these days. I need more love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, and faithfulness, and these only come from a heart that is focused on the Author of these things. The beauty of journaling is, even if I have to chase The Dude up the stairs 10 times during my 20 minutes of study, I can pick up right where I left off. It has been wonderful.
Since this resolution has been so productive, I've expanded to others. One, is this blog. I don't know how I'll have time, but I do know we have time for things that are important to us. And I love to write, and I want to remember these days. I can't say my boys will care to look back at this someday, because boys are well...boys. But I know it will mean something to me.
My next one is to get better with coupons...more organized so that I will use them more. Nothing extreme...I don't have the time, energy, space, or need for 15 bottles of hot sauce. But I do think there is some money to be saved if I can get more efficient, and these days, working part-time, I have at least a few more minutes than we do dollars.
We cut our cable and cut back on our home phone service this year, and that has felt great, though it has so far been one disaster after another. Our new internet/home phone service was "activated" 1/4, and so far we have only had internet 5 of those days due to wiring problems and then a defective modem. Our brand new Roku internet streaming device worked for 2 days before refusing to turn on, and another one is in the mail as we speak. And antenna tv, when all you choose to afford is a cheap tiny indoor antenna...well let's say it's pretty useless, though slightly amusing.
But through all the annoyance of the transition, one thing is certain...we don't miss cable tv at all, and I highly doubt we'll ever go back.

This is JT's last week of Fire Academy. I can't believe this 5 months of torture is coming to a close. It's been a wild finish. JT has had to work 5 days a week while going to school 4 days a week (Sat and Sun being 10 hour days), and we've all been fighting illness for what seems like weeks on end. I don't know what we'll do when we have time together as a family again, but I know that Aquaman badly needs some Daddy time. I'll have a whole post about that later, I think. But if you want to know how things are going with Aquaman lately, let me just say, I have recently reserved a book from the library called "3 yr old...friend or enemy." One thing about Aquaman, he always keeps me on my toes...and my knees.
There are definitely mixed feelings at the thought of JT possibly leaving ocean rescue for fire rescue in the coming months. He loves lifeguarding, he's good at it, he's dreamed of it. But there's some limitations to it. Like lack of promotions, and skin cancer, and, though I hate to say
As most do, I have a love/hate relationship with money. I've always kind of imagined myself poor and happy, just living on love. But of course, in order to do just about anything these days, you need money. What we have decided at this point in our lives is that the only things that are really important are that we stay debt free while still being able to feed our children with decent food, live in a safe neighborhood with good schools, and for neither of us to have to work too many hours in order to do that. I could never stay home, because it would mean JT would have to be gone ALL the time, making money, just to pay necessary bills. But my boys need me at home as much as possible, so it is a fine line to dance around.

So we dance. And pray. And seek the Lord, because "all these things the Gentiles earnestly seek...but our Father in Heaven knows what we need."
Looking forward to seeing the plans that He has for us this year.

1 comment:

  1. Joelle, I KNEW you would be a fabulous blogger. In fact, I was thinking of dropping a hint for you to start one, but you beat me to it!! Good for you!! You are a fantastic writer. You inspire with honesty and faith and love. Cheers to our blogs, as little as they may feel, they are big to us. They tell our stories. Great to read yours, thank you for sharing!