Monday, August 24

Five Minute Friday: Find

A little Five Minute Friday (on Monday)

"You will never find time for anything. If you want time you must make it." ~Charles Buxton

"Lost time is never found again." ~Proverb

"To choose time is to save time." ~Francis Bacon

"You love what you find time to do." ~Unknown  (<== click to tweet)

"Take care in your minutes, and the hours will take care of themselves" ~Lord Chesterfield

Time management quotes always make me a little sick to my stomach, because I'm awful at it. I can never seem to find the time I need for the things that I say are of great importance to me.  Writing, quality reading, making cards, sending cards, maybe even reading to my kids (although that may be pushing it... Reading my Bible and spending time in prayer, investing in the lives of those around me, even exercise.

Constantly I wonder, why can't I find time for this or that? Then I realize it's because I haven't wanted it bad enough. I say I love to do these things, but actions speak louder than words.

When I have a few minutes to spare, I think it's too little time to get into a project or focus on a task I want to complete, so instead I fritter away 5-10 minutes on iphone games, facebook and instagram, brainless TV or novels, and the like... and before I know it, I've lost an hour and will never get it back.

What if I took those 5-10 minutes and stretched my brain or chose a chunk of a task? It's possible that an hour later I will look up from my task and see accomplishment. I don't need to focus on the hours when I start, just five minutes here and five minutes there, making the time for the things I say matter in my life. I might even find my motivation again.

So thankful I "found" time to write and join Five Minute Friday today. Maybe you will too?

Wednesday, August 19

Five Minute Friday: Learn

Wednesday seems as good a day as any to write and post a Five Minute Friday blogpost.

Five Minute Friday: LEARN

A new school year is on the horizon, not just for my kids, but for me, too. I never set out to be a #studentmom. I thought for sure my two years of a "Secretarial Program" (now it's called Office Administration) would get me through life just fine. And after seven years of various office jobs, I was ready to come home, stay home, and be a mom.

However, two things happened...

One, I suddenly started learning again. It's crazy how my kids teach me more than I am teaching them. Every day (even when I don't realize it) I am learning from them, through the situations we face, through the growing process. My kids are some of the most grueling educators I know...

I also discovered that I wasn't done with formal book learning. And 15 years after I hung up my pencils, papers, and textbooks, I started up again. This time for a BA in Communications/writing. To be honest, these on-campus classes freak me out a little bit. My brain isn't as fresh as it used to be. I have a lot more responsibilities and distractions than I did out of high school. And because I am a people pleaser, I always wonder how the young "whippersnappers" I'm in class with, will take to the middle aged MOM in their class.

I've discovered something in the last three years of continuing education... Experience goes a long way, and brings a new element to the learning process. Experience is a valuable teacher.

I never set out to be a lifelong learner, but it turns out that is what God wants of each one of us--even if it's not in the classroom setting!

Never stop learning! (Tweet This)

Wednesday, August 12

God will bless the work of your hands

Sometimes in this journey to discover and pursue my God-sized dreams, sometimes in this desire to be a writer...
Sometimes I just have to open my journal even if it is already 10:00 at night and I don't want to write, but I don't want to quit this attempt at daily writing. Sometimes in that moment the journal itself gives a writing prompt.

Right there staring me in the face is Deuteronomy 16:15. 

"God will bless you ... in all the work of your hands, and your joy will be complete."

Writing is the work of my hands. Card making is the work of my hands. Continuing my education is the work of my hands. The meals I prepare, the baking I do, the time I invest in my kids and husband, even folding the laundry is the work of my hands.

The writing and the card making have been stagnant for far too long. I don't need to whine and cry about too much to do, or fear of failure, or uncertainty about how to proceed. 

I just need to stop procrastinating.

The work of my hands.
How can God use me?
How can God bless the work of my hands?
I have been keeping my hands closed, not writing, not creating, not making art. God can't bless what I'm not creating. But I can create again, if I open my hands and work with them.

What is it God is calling you to do, to create, to work with your hands? Are you doing it? How can we encourage one another today?

Friday, July 31

Five Minute Friday: Try

It's Friday and I'm actually writing another blog post! I love being back in the swing of writing and using the word prompts from Five Minute Friday!!

This Week's Prompt: TRY
I hear the word "try" and all I can think of is the famous Yoda quote...

"Do, or do not. There is not try!"

However, in my house lately the cry has been "I can't" (or more accurately, "buuuu-uuuttt, Iiiiiii caaaaa-aaaannnn't"). To which I reply, "All I'm asking is that you try!"

It's so easy to take the easy way out and say, "I can't, so I won't even try." But I'm working on teaching my kids (and myself) that you will never know if you don't even make an attempt. Sometimes all it takes is a little effort, just a small starting point, and before you know it you have done it...

learned something new
tried a new food
faced an old fear
discovered a new opportunity
made a new friend
created new artwork
succeeded over past failures.

Trying leads to doing! What have you discovered (or conquered) lately by trying?!

PS... wanna TRY to win a FairTrade giveaway?  Enter Here!!

Thursday, July 30

Fair Trade Friday (and a giveaway!)

So I'm feeling all the feelings today, and it's one of those days where I can't make sense of the thoughts and feelings in my head. I am so excited to share the ministry of Fair Trade Friday with my readers today.  But I'm so afraid of "doing it wrong" or not doing it justice.

This ministry is so amazing that I don't even know how to share it with you. Fair Trade Friday was started by Kristen Welch as a ministry of Mercy House Kenya (also amazing). Kristen is the author of Rhinestone Jesus, a book that shares her journey of little yesses that led to some scary yesses and resulted in lives changed, girls rescued, and babies given a chance at life.

The truth is, we think that one person can't make a difference, but just like the story of the little snowflake, when we all work together, it CAN impact the world. These women depend on our purchases. One artisan said, "Tell the women in America that we need them to keep buying what we make. Tell them it is feeding my son and two daughters. Tell them not to forget us." And that is why I do what I can. One person can make a difference, when joining hands with other people to make a difference.

Our monthly budget is not huge by any stretch of the imagination, but God always meets our needs. I'm thankful to have the opportunity to be a part of the Fair Trade Friday club for a time. Getting my box each month was so much fun as I "oohed and aahed" over the items and then read the cards to find out more about the story of the women who made these items. To be honest, the jewelry is my favorite! Especially the earrings, so I was delighted when they came out with an "Earring of the Month" option.

The biggest reason that I love working with Fair Trade Friday, is that they are Gospel-Centered! Changing lives here on earth is good, but changing lives for eternity is so much more powerful.

The details: Fair Trade Friday is a monthly membership club that delivers high quality fair traded items to your door. The items in the box are fairly traded and provide employment to women all over the world. If you aren't ready to commit to a monthly subscription, there is an option for a one time trial box. They also have an "Earring of the Month" subscription which is currently my favorite!!

As a bonus, I am offering a giveaway of some of the items I have received in my monthly boxes/earrings. In addition, I am including a copy of Rhinestone Jesus!

Included in this giveaway is:
A copy of Rhinestone Jesus (retail $15.99)
Handmade Market Tote by Joyn (retail $12)
Blockprinted Key Chain by Joyn (retail $6)
Tears of Joy earrings by Village Artisan (retail $11.95)
Fabric bracelet by Tukula (retail $16)

Enter Here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for sharing!

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