End of summer. End of mountains of sandy/dirty laundry, long road trips, relatives a’visiting. Time to relax, right? Righhhhhht….
Does this look anything like your autumn list?
- Begin in earnest a new homeschooling year with new books, new curriculum, new pencils and new hopes for a fresh and fulfilling knock-it-out year of academic wowzaminess.
- Preserve and can a garden full of harvest or at least those few 20 pound boxes of various fruit that was too good to pass up via the local organic food drop
- Plan and prepare homemade Christmas gifts and supplies for a list of people that hasn’t even been created yet and oh yea don’t forget to plan the holiday photo in time for all of the card addressing and sending off
- Speaking of gardens (were we?), weed and put the gardens to bed for the winter and make sure any livestock is set for feed and breeding needs
- And oh yeah, livestock. It’s butchering time and time to fill the freezer.
- Begin preparations for fall cleaning for the upcoming holiday season and, once again, the relatives to come a’visiting.
Allow me to offer you (and the above-list owner)
1. Study to be quiet
Protect (or carve out) that solitude time in the morning or whenever it is best for you. Study the Word, take a 20 minute walk, take a daily tea…and let the world pass on by with its (inter)net. Make time to just sit on the porch and make pictures out of stars. In other words, chill out, woman. The world won’t end if you don’t have your 54 pints of applesauce in the pantry by Thanksgiving.
2. Work with your hands
Just do the next thing. If the next “thing” is completely unclear, break down the larger goals into parts. For example, if you’re going to make homemade gifts, break it down into step like you’re talking to your five-year-old self. #1 Pick an idea. #2 Make a list of recipients. #3 Make a list of supplies….etc. Then schedule out when each step can be done onto a calendar. Focus on the next step, not on the whole finished product. Pat yourself on the back for accomplishing the step! You’d do the same for your own child, wouldn’t you?
3. Build houses
Seek ye first the kingdom of God. If the foundation is rotting, the house will fall. Keep first things first: God, Bible reading and study, character building. Don’t ignore discipline issues for lack of time or the warning signals that maybe that group of “friends”or that outside activity for your child isn’t really wise. Don’t presume upon tomorrow. Better to let the weeds outside grow than to allow sin to take root on the inside. Remember to keep the main thing, the main thing.
4. Dwell in them
Be present. If your to-do lists are too large to include your children’s “helps” or a quiet evening with your husband doing nothing but watching a movie, then your lists are too large. Remember that you are also a member of the family. Use your sofa and knit. Swing on the kiddy swing. Dring tea out of one of those hanging tea cups. Use your tub for a good soak. Don’t be the blur rushing always by the child waiting for laptime with a book hanging from his hands.
5. Plant gardens
There is a time and season for all that truly needs to be done, but sometimes what is needful is dwarfed by what is desired. Use a schedule, plan your time wisely. Don’t over commit–and learn to say “no” without guilt! Making a schedule or even a loose routine will be a good check for a realistic 24 hour day. No, you can’t be in three places at once. And yes, you do need to sleep!
6. Eat the fruit of them
Eat what you have today; don’t worry about the ‘morrow. Find gratefulness and blessing in each day, even more than the lacks or failures that seem burdensome. His mercies are new every morning; exhale thanks before your feet hit the floor and remember that although Jesus really had a short time to do the work of the Father, He was never in a hurry. Trust God to give you the time to do what He has called you to do, today.
You can read more thoughts on not being overwhelmed this week at other High Five Mom posts. Tell them I sent you!