Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Simple But Special

It's been such a crazy week so far.  It is so nice having a "normal" routine today.  Of course, it is Halloween, so the schedule isn't completely normal!

I have to say that I am feeling emotionally discombobulated.(I really like that word!)  Things seem to have been on fast forward lately.  It's challenging having a toddler and an infant at home and trying to get anything done.  It's difficult doing the college visits and knowing that a big change is coming soon.( x 2 since both Andrew and Mike are doing the college search).  It's been so busy with soccer and cross country schedules...which are winding down thankfully.....but just as basketball season begins.(That's our true busy season with 4 kids that play..and Andrew runs Track! me some anxiety just thinking about it!)

We are sliding into the holiday season, which I love.  But, I struggle between finding a balance between trying to make things special and trying to do too much.  And there is the whole "staying on a budget" issue.  That's a tough one for me.  Each year I've gotten a little better, but I have to make a conscious effort to just.stop.buying.  Again, I want each of my kids to feel special.  I want the gifts to make them feel loved.  It's so much harder as they get older.  I'm blessed that our kids aren't materialistic.  (So are they because they would be sorely  Mostly, they don't really ask for anything specific.   They say to surprise them, which is so much harder than it sounds.

(Although Jon asked for toys this year!  He's feeling nostalgic and missing the Christmas excitement of his pre-teen years.)

I always wrestle with the desire to be simple...a couple special gifts and a fun stocking(all shopped for before Advent even starts so I can focus on and encourage the spiritual side of Christmas) vs. feeling like it's all "enough".  Inevitably, it's much easier to shop for certain kids...especially the girls and the little ones...and I worry that I didn't get enough "special" for the kids that I don't have the best ideas for.

Simple but Special is a great motto!...and one I really want to commit to this year!

It's easy to get caught up in the commercialization of it all.  Shopping online or in stores brings products in front of my eyes I never would have seen many of them "cute" or "something so-and-so would  love".  I'm always tempted for that "one more little thing"....which leads to guilt if it's too many "one more little things" when the bill comes in!  I would really like to avoid that this year.

There are signs in my life that things need to change.  My desire to lose weight vs my lack of healthy choices and not making the effort to make the time to exercise.  That has got to change...but I have to commit to changing it for more than a few days!  Jay's stress levels have increased with the changes in his job due to changes in Medicare and are not good.  I know that needs to change....and the only way it can is to re-vamp some of our budgeting.  God provides...we just need to make very good choices with what is given to us if we will be able to keep all the kids in the Catholic schools that we feel God has chosen for them to be at.  Some sacrifices are challenging, but worth it.

We also need to continue with the efforts to organize our home.  We're off to a good start, but we certainly have a ways to go!

Thankfully, each day is a new day.  But, I need to have more of a plan and a goal for all the areas of concern in my life.  Otherwise, each week passes by without change and just adds stress and discouragement.

Prayer, a plan, goals, prayer, focus, prayer....that's where I'm headed.  I'm honestly looking forward to the structure..and to the inner peace that always comes from putting God first and letting Him lead!