Two Ponderings For the New Year

December 30, 2011 · 13 comments

Our home in the woods in last winter’s snow

I was struck by the title of a chapter I was reading in Parenting by the Spirit (an excellent little book, by the way).  It was “Does your schedule match your priorities?”  This probably gained my attention because I ponder this sort of thing quite a bit, and what I dislike probably more than anything else is the act or the idea of living life in the shallows.  Does my life match my priorities?  I don’t know. I think so, most of the time, for the areas that are truly in my control.  But my confidence wanes enough to cause me to question it, all the same.

Here are my latest ponderings.  Feel free to leave me a comment and help me unwrap them more.  Or please share your own new year ponderings!

1.  To keep blogging, or not to keep blogging…

I kept a far more active blog years ago that I quit, and now it’s been a couple more years on this one.  And I feel like I’m floundering these days on it, like either I have nothing else to say, or hunger more for real relationships with people that I can actually call by name.  Even now, I wonder, who am I writing to?  Are they even reading this? Or are they (dread) just *skimming* though, ready to click-click-click onto other blog posts, other websites, other places?  How does this fit with my own “priority” of real, deep and honest relationships?

And then I think, well, I blog because I love to write (which I do), and I want to encourage other moms in building their own happy homes.  But, really?  If I write a post on, say, “does your schedule match your priorities?”…. is it really making a difference in anyone’s life?  Does my reader actually think “hmm?” and ponder and come to peace with those ponderings?  Or is the noise of simultaneous media texts and  status updates distracting?  I so want to be a blessing, and not one more voice that is potentially fodder for distraction and the neglect of the better things.  Is that even possible?

What I really long to do is reach over, close up the laptops (yours and mine), and talk over coffee cake and a cup of tea.  What’s the Lord been teaching you lately?  How are your children doing?  Is your life joy-filled?  Do you need to forgive anyone?  How can I pray for you?  What are you making for supper tonight?  How is your marriage?  What are you reading?  What do you dream about? Tell me your testimony of God’s grace, because I love to hear the story again and again from my brethren…

I’m not sure how to cultivate *that* kind of relationship over a computer, no matter how many followers, friends, or fans the site or statistics says I have.  Then again, maybe the point of it all is not to cultivate relationships at all, but just a place to showcase *me*.  Which seems sort of like a limp wet rag in my mind; I am more than my avatar.

2.  To go to school, or not…

It took me 13 years to get my BS and MS in Holistic Nutrition.  I just picked at it while baring and raising six children, and eventually received two more degrees than the one I earned in college.  Now what?  I think I want to learn more about becoming a community herbalist, and do more schooling towards that end.  I love learning!  And of course, because I’m pregnant (again), doesn’t that mean more schooling (again)?  I guess I am just wondering how and when (and if) all of that schooling is going to combine into something I can use to either bless other people with or to help provide more income for my family (or both).  Or is it just enough to use all of that information for my own small circle of family and friends?

So what I’m really pondering is:   how I’m going to get to really know and help women slow down their crazy lives enough to smell the roses while cultivating my writing habits while offering my love of good food and herbs for vibrant health while sharing my love of drawing and stitching while always pointing those women to the Prince of Peace where they can find what the whole purpose of our short, vapor lives is really about to begin with.

Ok, there are the threads.  Let’s see how they weave.

Blessings for a spirit-led, fruit-filled, new year to you all,


{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Sally December 30, 2011 at 3:14 pm

I wonder if we all don't ponder these things at different seasons. My purpose for blogging is different today than it was when I started, and that's okay. But you are so right about that relationship thing — the missing "tea and coffee cake" is a huge gap in these friendships, the IN PERSON factor! But you never know what the Lord will do… I made a close blogging friend several years ago and never dreamed we would know each other IRL, and now here we are living in not only the same part of the country, but in the same small town, three miles down the road from each other. :) God was sooo good to do that for me! Do you have thoughts of moving to MN, too? :) We would definitely break out the tea and coffee cake if it were so.

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Anonymous December 30, 2011 at 4:14 pm

Hi Keri Mae! I met you at Peniel Ranch last summer and discovered your blog soon after. I love your writings! You inspire and challenge and encourage me every time I read. I enjoy tour graceful simplicity and admire your artwork. I trust the Lord will gide you, but I for one, hope you keep writing! Longing for the coffee date, nancy in Snohomish

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Dawn December 30, 2011 at 10:07 pm

I know what you mean about relationships. When I started blogging (a few years ago), I was starved for any communication I could get with the outside world. I was very trapped in the world of special needs kids and hundreds of doctor appointments. As my world has opened up in the "real world" the need to blog changed. Now, my blog is my diary and I honestly have told people that I will have to look that up on my blog and tell you when it happened. LOL! I think blogs are an exchange of ideas. There are just so many people who I can talk to in a day. I hope you find peace and joy in 2012.Blessings,Dawn

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Keri Mae December 31, 2011 at 1:27 am

Thank you so much for your comments. It is a comfort to know that other bloggers face the same issues, which I think is one of the points of blogging (realizing that no, you're not alone!). Sally, I *almost* made it to MN last November and I would have loved to have met you!Nancy, I would love to have a coffee date with you! If you ever find your way across the water, let me know!Dawn, I appreciate what you said about a blog being like your diary. When I think of it in that way, it feels a bit better to keep it going.I appreciate my readers (and listeners!) so much.Blessings,Keri Mae

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naturalmotherhood December 31, 2011 at 2:00 am

Dear Keri Mae,Time on my computer is almost non-existent some days so I strive to use it wisely. Your blog is one of the few TOP reads that I love and your podcasts are the main things I listen to while cooking and cleaning. I had a brunch awhile ago for my two Daughters-in-Love and for a soon to be D-I-L (smiles) and chose one of your podcast to share with them. We were sharing various things on marriage, motherhood, homemaking and so on for the Christian woman and your writings and podcasts were just what we needed. We ended up running short on time so only one D-I-L got to hear the podcast I wanted to share but it came at a time when she was seeking God concerning her family priorities. She was touched to the point of tears. She ended up listening to every single one of your podcasts and loves discussing them with me. This has been one of the biggest transformations and God really spoke to her through you. As a writer who all too often wonders if anyone is even reading or being blessed by my writing … I wanted to share with you that your words are blessing people. The Lord is pouring through you -I just wanted to let you know. . .

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Amy December 31, 2011 at 4:49 am

Keri Mae –You are writing to me! I found your blog years ago when we were both on HSB. Mine has always been more of a journal and a way for far-away family to keep up with us and lately it has become very sporadic. I don't have the time that I thought I once had.Your blog though has always been encouraging to me. You come across so transparently and I feel like I really do know you and wish too that I could pull up a chair for a cup of tea with you and really know you.No matter if you have a huge following and even if you are only blessing a few with your words I do hope you continue. As far as schooling. Use what you have learned to share here and with your circle of family and friends until the day the Lord directs you to another path. I am sure it won't be wasted!Blessings!~Amy

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Lora December 31, 2011 at 6:21 am

i can totally relate. i often struggle with blogging and share many of the same thoughts and questions that you wrote about in this post. thank you for being so transparent. God is using you!! blessings, lora

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Keri Mae December 31, 2011 at 9:34 am

Oh my. I'm so glad you all like my "transparency" because now I'm feeling very sheepish about being so open. I really appreciate all of the sweet comments; I shared them with my husband and it was all very touching. Thank you for baring with me while I figure things out. I feel the love xo

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awcamp January 1, 2012 at 11:06 am

Happy New Year, Keri Mae! I've been following your writing off and on for a few years now, and I must say it is a gift, a reminder that I'm not alone on this journey to find a truly meaningful path for myself and my family. Your words ground me. You write about real things and you inspire truth. I've always felt that you would be the kind of friend I would enjoy having tea with and probing deep and important questions. I also think your blog does a beautiful job reflecting your priorities and encouraging women who are seeking the Lord's will for their lives. "Well done, good and faithful servant."

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Anna January 1, 2012 at 1:27 pm

The new year does remind of of how quickly time passes by doesn't it. It is making me think a lot about what I hope to do in the new year, and even more about what He would have me do.I too enjoy your writing and personally hope you continue, but of course only you can know what He wants most for you and your family.Blessings to you as you ponder the new year, and a very happy new year to you and your family!

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Steena Brown January 2, 2012 at 10:08 am

Just thought I'd leave a comment to let you know that I often skim through OTHER blogs but when A Happy Home shows up on Google Reader I always READ your posts! No skimming here. Even if it's once a week or once a month it is enjoyable to read. I love your podcasts with your husband too :) (and his podcasts and fascinating… I even recommended them to my chiropractor!). All of the things you listed as aspirations sound like the job of a mother to me! Never underestimate what an amazing role model, teacher, and mom you are to the little ones ;) the Lord will lead. I will pray for you this evening.

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Rebecca January 10, 2012 at 1:31 pm

No skimming here either. I have learned SO much from your podcasts and posts. I contacted you once about a miscarriage I had and you answered me so kindly. You are like that friend who closes up the laptop and holds your hand and wants to pray together. Your last podcast about fear not was just exactly what I needed right now! Thank you so much for your sweet ministry to mothers. I love reading what you write and listening to your podcasts with your husband. God bless you. Rebecca

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Keri Mae January 10, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Thank you all so kindly. Truly.

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