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Trouble with the tongue

regretSarcasm. Quick to respond. Eye rolling. All before 8 AM (and this is me that I’m talking about!). One might believe that since I live with 2 teenagers, a pre teen and an elementary cutie, the blame would easily fall on their shoulders. But, I feel deep down, that the smart mouth starts here – pointing at myself. I hate to say it – on most days I’d deny it – but today I am willing to guess that a few (or more) loud discussions are started by this little hot head right here.

I do my best to be the responsible adult that I am called to be. To respond in the way that I’d like to see my children respond. To not act like a lunatic when I’m dying to speak the words that I am screaming in my head. But, I’m human. And I’m tired, frustrated, grumpy, late, disappointed – insert a hundred other attributes that are really no excuse at all. Pinterest reminded me the other day that “Your mood should not dictate your manners”. Thanks, Pinterest. I later posted this on my facebook page, because I am helpful like that. In  reality, I was curious if my online friends also dealt with moments of madness that allowed for them to speak words that they would later regret.

Turns out, I was not alone. It was a bit sad knowing that others out there also had issues controlling their tongues. On the other hand, it also made me feel less isolated and more hopeful ~ strength in numbers, right?! I am working on it . I’m trying new things and old ideas – taking a breath before I respond, thinking before I speak (a novel idea). Considering the view-point of the other person before I forge ahead with my own retort. Remembering that I am the adult is crucial, and I know that it will be well worth my efforts in the end.

Looking for scripture on this topic has also been helpful – it turns out that this issue has been around for quite some time! Proverbs 31:26 (NIV translation) states “She speaks with wisdom and faithful instruction is on her tongue”. No mention of eye rolling or loud voices. Interesting. Also – Ephesians 4:29 (NIV translation) reads , “Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their need”. In other words, I need to try my hand at finding the best in each situation. Encouraging others and not saying everything that comes to mind in the heat of the moment.

Continuing to work on what comes out of my mouth is going to  be a life long focus for me. It will pay off when I see my children experiencing healthy relationships instead of the daily drama that bad tempers bring. Being a  good communicator is important to me. I want to raise children that can effectively express themselves. I want less shouting and hurt feelings. I want peace – and chocolate,  if we are being completely honest here. Keeping this as a goal in our house will helpfully make an impression on the kiddos and help their Mama be less of a spaz. Wish us luck!

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My word for 2015…

YOU CAN COMPLAIN

A few years back, I heard about something interesting that I decided to do at the start of each new year. The concept of making resolutions for the New Year has always been a negative one for me. Call it what you will – lack of will power, too high of expectations, big dreams and smaller amounts of motivation – but I never quite made it through January the end of the year with my list. It all seemed too daunting. So, needless to say, I was über excited to learn about a new way of doing things in order to get the positive results that I desired.

Basically, I choose a word. A concept that I’d like to focus on through out the entire year. A word that I can work into my daily life – my relationships, my struggles, my schedule. A word to meditate upon instead of a list to “do”. In the past, I have chosen the words peace, service and contentment. I go to my fave place, Pinterest, and create a board for my new word. I include quotes, articles or pictures that “speak to me”, that encouraged me to keep my word in the forefront of my mind. This year, I have chosen the word perspective. The photo quote above is one of my pins. And by the way – if you are not yet on Pinterest – please go and sign up. Now. I can wait. It will change your life  (in a good way). But, I digress. 🙂

Choosing your word has to be well thought out – it can’t just “happen”. It’s something I usually start thinking about during December, so that I will be ready  once all of the cookies have been eaten, the tree is down and the calendar flips, beginning the New Year. Typically , it will be a word that I feel like I need to understand more, connect with more, have in my life to a greater extent. A word that naturally intrigues me. I chose perspective as my word this year for several reasons. First, because of its basic definition. I am – please note the blog name – a lover of words. I like to learn new ones and then throw them into every day conversations. I like to use “big ones” and sound smarter than I actually am (we called those 50 cent words when I was growing up – as in “Don’t come in here and start throwing 50 cent words around here, Buddy!”) But I digress. Again. 🙂  Dictionary.com defines perspective as “a mental view or prospect”.  I feel that I did indeed need a change in my mental view.

Next, I truly felt that I needed to be reminded that my view was up to ME. The things that happen to me, rumors I hear, reports from news program … they are legit – but I get to decide how to react or “feel” about them all. And finally, and most  importantly, I wanted to start focusing more on the positive. Even in the worst case scenario – there is hope, and I wanted to train myself to look for that silver lining. I want it to become more natural. I know that there are still going to be  moments when I will want to sneak into the pantry, shut the door and enjoy a few minutes of solitude and M&Ms. I am definitely not saying that because I am focusing on the good that the bad will just disappear (don’t I wish). But during 2015, I am choosing to look for the good and see if that helps me to find it more than when I am grumbling around feeling sorry for myself.

I have mentioned this on Facebook each year and love it when my friends post their words for the year as well. It’s very interesting and motivating. So – what do you think? What is your word for the year?

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Love, sweet love…

tumblr_lz0j0zimeb1r3r669o1_500I have always loved Valentine’s Day, and anything heart-shaped – rocks, leaves, chocolate – whatever. Not just the lovey, squishy part of the holiday – although I would never turn that down – but the opportunity to show affection, appreciation and admiration to others. Life can get in the way sometimes, and I think it’s completely acceptable for the calendar to remind us to show some love …. it’s once a year – stop complaining!

Since I was a child, February 14th has been one of my favorite days. In fact, I enjoyed it so much, that in 7th grade when I made my Confirmation, I chose “Valentine” as my saint name. The act of showing kindness – not just romantic love – has always made me happy.  Picking out Valentine’s Day cards to pass to classmates, and using extra red and pink paper and enough glitter to cover the entire table was enough to make this gal giddy! My only wish is that the sentiment would linger a bit longer than 24 hours. Why is it so hard to be nice? Trust me – I have to ask myself the very same question (usually, it’s before I’ve had my coffee). I encourage all of us this week to go out there and show some love ~ smile more, judge less, hug often and know that each of us are worthy of being treated WELL. I thought it would be fun for me to make a random list of things that I ❤ love ❤ …. beside the typical “my husband, my children”… list.

  1. An organized pantry
  2. Brand new folders, gel pens, paperclips – basically anything in the school supply aisle
  3. Wine and popcorn
  4. Hearing the garage door open – that means my Prince is home!
  5. Filling in a blank calendar at the start of a brand new year
  6. Getting fun mail (anything but bills)
  7. Hot coffee in a cute mug
  8. Taking pictures so that the moment is captured
  9. Laughing so hard that I cry, and having sore stomach muscles the next day – which I totally count as a workout
  10. Glancing at my phone and seeing a text from a friend that was thinking about me
  11. Watching my children learn new things and then watching them teach others
  12. The way having a lazy cat on my lap helps me to forget my own crazy schedule
  13. Seeing sun beams that shine down from behind clouds – takes my breath away every time
  14. Receiving a note from one of my kids, and remembering the notes that I wrote to my own Mom as a child
  15. The taste of salt on my lips after swimming in the ocean
  16. Rolling over and discovering I still have 3 hours (or 7 minutes) more to sleep before my alarm goes off
  17. Peanut butter cookies straight from the oven – nothing better … well, maybe one thing … but I’m keeping this list family friendly (“Hi, Mom!”)
  18. Being sung “Happy Birthday”, because it’s so much better than the alternative

Please add your own list of loved things in the comments below – come on, give me at least one … it’s fun!