A gorgeous fall afternoon just begs a trip to Sunny Acres Farm and a walk on the walking path at Lincoln Marsh! What a fun and relaxing morning! Have you taken a fun field trip this month? Did you take pictures? Write a post and link it up to Fantastic Foto Fieldtrips @ The Homeschool Post!
It’s the activity that moms everywhere love to hate.
It’s Saturday mornings sipping coffee on the sidelines of a cold soccer field. It’s the comedy of watching 12 little boys follow a white ball around the field in a beehive like formation. It’s the joy of seeing the look of excitement on a 7-year old’s face when he “almost makes a goal”. It’s the anguish of seeing the ball get by the same little boy wearing the green goalie’s jersey. And it’s the satisfaction of seeing a team of boys take pride in their accomplishments and show good sportsmanship despite having never won a game.
It’s the activity this mom loves. Period.
Jim Cornelison’s singing of the National Anthem and the fans’ reaction to it never fails to amaze. Here he is singing at Soldier Field on September 11, 2011 for the opening of the 2011 National Football League season and in commemoration of the lives lost on September 11, 2001. This was broadcast live at NFL stadiums all over America. They couldn’t have chosen a better performer for the task.
In today’s culture it can be much worse to allow your children to watch advertisements than to allow them to view the programming the ads accompany. The same is typically true of advertisements in magazines, on billboards, and on the internet. Not only are today’s ads often R-rated (or worse,) they are usually presented without integrity. We’re never sure whether we can trust the line that the advertiser would have us buy! It all makes us look back with nostalgia at the “good 0l’ days” when you could trust advertisers to provide you with trust-worthy information in a clean, non-offensive way. Right?
Have you voted for my blogging partner, Arby, yet today. He’s a finalist in the Homeschool Dads category on the Homeschool Social Media Awards being hosted by Alpha Omega Publications. Arby and I are the writers over at The Homeschool Apologist. If you haven’t voted yet, head over and vote now! And don’t forget, you can vote for all your favorites once each day!!
Yesterday was the start of the “finals” of the Homeschool Social Media Awards hosted by Alpha Omega Publications. For the last several weeks, bloggers and social media types from within the Christian homeschool community nominated their favorite bloggers. Yesterday, the nominees were announced and the finalists were revealed. The voting phase has begun.
I’ve been blogging for 4 years. I’ve had 3 different blogs. And probably a total of about 55 readers. Well, that may be a slight under-exaggeration, but you get the point. I don’t have a big following. But that’s okay. At least it is now.
But there have been times over the last four years that I allowed my blogging to define who I was. I lived for the comments. I lived for the stats. And trust me, when you don’t have a big blog, that can be a bit of an ego slam.
How many people read that post?
Why didn’t they comment?
Didn’t they like it?
Maybe I should just quit.
Here’s the thing. I love to write. I love homeschooling and I love to talk about it. And when I started blogging, that was enough. But I didn’t realize at the time what I was getting myself into. I didn’t realize that I was joining a community of sorts. I didn’t realize that, in a way, this community could be a bit like junior high with its ability to make me feel invisible just because I didn’t have Gloria Vanderbilt jeans or a Dorothy Hamill haircut. Suddenly the need to feel noticed trumped the simple joy of just doing what I loved.
Visiting other blogs became a struggle. I would see AMAZING blogs with gorgeous photography, TONS of comments and hundreds of followers. And I’d feel inadequate.
And, oh dear, blog awards were a struggle. A blogger with 55 followers typically doesn’t get nominated for many awards. But I would graciously visit all those nominated blogs trying to choose someone to vote for. But rather then learn from them or be encouraged by what the nominated bloggers had to say, all I could see was my own blog…with all its perceived inadequacies.
During that time, blogging became a burden. I wasn’t writing because I loved it. I was writing because I wanted other people to love it. And when they didn’t, I felt crushed. I lost my joy. And my purpose.
There’s a little bit of wisdom that someone once shared with me that I had completely lost sight of. I’ve shared it over and over with my daughters and other folks over the years. Now I had to listen to my own words.
“If you’re not enough without it, you’ll never be enough with it.”
My identity is not found in my blogging. Or anything earthly or worldly. Because no matter how big a tower I build in my own strength or wisdom, it will never be enough. And it’s that way by design. If my purpose and my joy are not wrapped up in doing all things for HIS glory, joy and contentment will be illusive. And that’s a good thing. When joy and contentment are illusive, we are more inclined to cry out to our REAL source of joy. There will never be feelings of inadequacy over even the smallest of towers that we allow Him to build in our lives.
I don’t know what towers you’re trying to build. I’ve had to learn this lesson over and over again through the years. And I know I haven’t learned it for the last time. In fact, a couple of weeks ago when the blog awards were announced, I found myself having to revisit this lesson! We are human. And prone to tower building.
Now, mind you, blog awards are not bad things. They provide an opportunity to tell a blogger that has touched your heart in some way that you appreciate them. They provide an opportunity to expand the circle of people that you can learn from. It’s not the awards themselves that are flawed. It’s our hearts. If the Lord has used these awards to reveal something to you about your heart, don’t ignore it. It won’t go away. He won’t let it.
And for that I am very grateful.
Me & Dad • Lovely Sunset • On the beach • Look Mom, I’m SKIING!
Aren’t they cute? • We ♥ G’ma & G’pa • Perfect mirror image • Sibling ♥
I ♥ the driver • Another evening cruise • Strange children • Looking for food
Yes, another sunset • Inside activities • Five loons • Oh Captain, My Captain♥
A quiet moment • Still looking for food • Cousins & tubing fun • Last sunset
Last weekend, all four of my children were in the wedding of a dear friend. The girls have been been friends with Emily…more like sisters, really…for more than 20 years. They’ve share both the blessings and the hardships of growing up “in ministry.” It’s created a bond that is unbreakable. It was a wonderful weekend with laughter, tears, and lots of makeup and hairspray!!
Summer has finally arrived in Northern Illinois and our garden is finally looking like a garden! In fact, we’ve even eaten some peas! Now, if only the tomatoes would ripen.