Monday, August 1, 2011

Happiness Project, Month 2 Wrap-Up, Month 3

This has been a good month but I have to admit, the "clearing clutter" challenge was a lot more daunting that I thought it would be. After a month of lots of clearing out, we still haven't put the Bumbo, the wonderful swing, the bouncer or the blood pressure monitor on Craigslist, we haven't held the garage sale and all of my clearing out has been limited to the main floor (and our rec room downstairs is definitely the house dumping ground and really needs a clear out). Clearing clutter has definitely given me a sense of accomplishment and I love opening a closet door and not having an avalanche. It's also been cathartic to me, I think, to get rid of baby stuff - that forces me to move on past that faint wish for another little one (although, to be honest, as Little Bean's sleep improves and the further from the memories of pregnancy and delivery I get, the less nostagically I look back, I really don't want to do that again).

My biggest struggle, really, is to make peace with the fact that, as long as we have little ones, life will not be clutter free. I love seeing a house that isn't scattered with thousands of toys (I curse all of you who have given us party loot bags!) and I really like to be able to have company in without having to do an all-day cleaning fest beforehand. In the back of my mind, I am often thinking of the Christian idea of hospitality and thinking that my house should always be guest-ready to be hospitable. I think the true secret to happiness in all of this is to let go of those expectations and accept that a cleared-off place to sit, a cup of tea and a yummy snack in the midst of toy clutter might be the best I can offer right now.

The next's month's theme is one that I am really feeling the need for right now. Faith. My anxiety levels have been really, really obsessively high (yes, I need to talk to my doctor about it, we may joke with friends about me being a worrier but frankly, the feeling of impending doom that I seem to live with at times really is rather crushing). I think that if I can find a way to pray about things and then release that, it will really help me. I have already started trying to do a few things to put more of an emphasis on my faith and they do bring me peace. Now, it's time to take a month to be really deliberate about it and see if I can turn this into a series of good habits.

1. Read the Bible for a few minutes each morning when I first get up (which I often do but when life gets busy and kids get up early, this is easy to let slide).

2. Write in my prayer journal every morning. I record my prayer requests and then go back and review them every so often to see how things have turned it. It's a chance to see clear evidence of God's faithfulness. Again, I do this sometimes but it often gets missed in the craziness of the day.

3. Do a daily Bible reading with the kids, maybe in a devotional format. Pk and I did this regularly before bedtime but we have gotten out of the habit lately (I must admit, I get so tired, I am often trying to get bedtime over with as it seems to drag out). I'd like to do a little Bible story and prayer time each morning.

4. Try and do a social thing with church friends once a month. I have many friends who aren't devout Christians (which is just fine, many of them offer me friendship that is at least as supportive and heart-affirming as my Christian friends) but sometimes, it is nice to have those special friendships. This should be fairly easy, as a group of us who live in town are doing a monthly dinner club anyway.

I'd love to hear what you do with your own kids for devotions, if you do them. Along the way, Pk and I have been pretty good about it and when I was off on leave, we did lots of work but since I have gone back to work, it has slipped.

Have a happy August!

1 comment:

  1. I just finished reading this book over the weekend - lots of food for thought!