gratefulness

That Thankful Wednesday in September

IMG_3329.JPG That box. That giant box of brownie mix is what I'm thankful for today. No, they aren't scratch-made brownies, but why should I attempt to make my own, when Ghirardelli does an amazing job already?! If you didn't already know, I love brownies. love.them. {so daggone much} And today, I really thought about how cool it is to have this giant box of brownie mix. To be able to afford it, and have the oil, water, and egg it needs to bake it in an oven that I always take for granted. [ps. I kinda hate the oven this house came with...but I shouldn't be hatin' on it...what a blessing it is!]

As I mixed the brownie batter, I looked around for three minutes and found some other things I really am being intentionally thankful for today:

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that tub of girl clothes I literally walk by this tub everyday multiple times. My girls think it's a mountain to climb or a bench to sit on whilst eating a ziplock baggie of Cheerios. I see it as an eyesore, a chore that I need to "obviously" tackle (refolding all of those little clothes), and a reminder that I still need to put it away after Mike got it down for Emma after she was born.

But it's a real reminder at how much my children have. So many clothes. So many choices. All given to us. We never paid a penny for any of them. For that, I'm humbled and grateful.

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This Amazon guy that fixed my '19 kids' season pass debacle. Thanks, amazon guy.

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The way I always hear the boys giggling and spraying each other with water during "quiet time" everyday. I may not like them wasting water all the time, but really, who cares?! They're being children...most of all, they're outside and being silly little boys when most of their peers are still sitting at a desk. They finished school in 2 1/2 hours today. They deserve to douse each other in water and swing on their tire swing.

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a reminder. a reminder that I don't have joy and I should. I usually allow my tiredness or my situations dictate my attitude. Thanks, Joy-ful wall art for reminding me that I plain suck at being joyful.

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I'm thankful for the baby that doesn't want to leave my chest today. I'm thankful for her 3 hr.off and on grunting/attempts at pooping last night that kept me up. She finally exploded at 10:30am. It was epic, as was her smile afterwards.

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This shower. It helps me so much. I'm thankful for boys that can use it and clean water that showers away all of their outdoor adventures.

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Emma's thigh. Yes, I'm thankful because it's chubby and healthy and a true symbol that she is gaining weight all because I am able to provide all the nourishment she needs.

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I'm thankful God invented sisters. I'm so happy my girls have multiple sisters. I'm super thankful for my one sister who means the world to me.

Regardless of how spent I feel, how much I wish, or how immersed in motherhood I am...there really are reminders all around me of how grateful I should be.

Grateful. Not thankful, grateful.

Love, Alicia

Her life is better [or she has what I want]

When they measure themselves with themselves and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding and behave unwisely. 2 Corinthians 10:12

You do it. I do it. We all do it.

The grass is always greener...

If only we had what they have...

Life would be better if________

Why does she have what I want, but I can't have?

It profits us nothing and amounts to a pile of wasted minutes when we compare and lust after what "she has, and I don't".

And now that we can readily see into the lives of those around us on Facebook and Instagram, it's like an encyclopedia of windows into others lives thrust into our coveting file.

If comparison and coveting was a social crime, I'd be on death row. I cannot begin to tell you how many times I've fallen into the trap of "she has it better".

"She cooks better than me.." "She dresses like she isn't a SAHM...how does she manage to look so perfect?" "Her kids are smarter, dress better, are involved in more activities, and are better behaved than mine" "If only I had her house, with her garden, and her beautiful decor" "If only I looked like that after having a baby" "Her and her husband constantly go on dates...(rolls eyes)

I could go on and on and on....

Ladies, mamas, when we constantly are swimming in the ocean of "I want her life" we do ourselves and our God an extreme disservice. We essentially are saying that God favors her over me, and that I am less than mediocre, I am or my life isn't up to a standard or level I probably am not meant to reach.

It's so easy, too easy in fact, to look at what others want us to perceive their lives to be. But I believe it's what we don't see that is the real truth of it all. All of us have struggles and it's easy to mask our struggles by posting only positive and perfection. What we encounter thru the screen of our devices, isn't the whole picture. The mom you may deem as "covet-worthy" may be struggling deeply with a secret sin or circumstance that, if revealed, may cause us to repent our Tenth Commandment blunder.

God has put you where you are, with the children that you have, in the home that you abide, with the resources He has graciously provided, during this time in history, for a purpose to glorify Him. There is no way you are to fulfill that purpose if you are constantly looking to the right or left desiring "this or that" from an unaware victim.

Look ahead. Keep your eyes on Him. Don't become distracted by what your life isn't and be thankful for what your life is. In the midst of extreme struggle, praise His Name. In the most joyful of times, praise His Name. In the cleaning, chaotic, disaster, grocery shopping, sloppy hair, overdue bills, haven't been out of the house in days times: praise Him still.

You are what He wants. Not you+a version of another mama. Just you. As you are. Always seeking to make Him smile. Even in your exhaustion and imperfection. Especially in your exhaustion and imperfection.

Really count your blessings. You have more than most.

Love, Alicia

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