Changes around our house lately wouldn't be obvious to an onlooker.

I had high hopes of daily preschool and a more structured routine.  Instead, things have gone on as usual, with just small movements in that direction.  The TV is on less often, some days not at all.  Books are becoming a daily staple, as well as crayons and paper.  Sometimes I teach a lesson or principle, but it's rarely planned or rehearsed.  It isn't a goal achieved, but I feel the slight movements and know that we aren't just spinning our wheels.

And with homemaking.  Through all of my ups and downs of homemaking, I do see overall improvement.  I'm not a natural, but I'm keeping at it and getting better, ever so slowly.  (though you wouldn't think so if you could look over at my kitchen as I am right now...hmmm.)  Baby steps.  Things are slightly more organized, meals are slightly healthier, on average my floor isn't quite as dirty.  I really make a push at times and do much better, and then as time goes on things may settle into something less than I was hoping, but better than they were before.

And motherhood.  Sometimes it isn't something that I get better at through my own efforts. Sometimes life just pushes me.  The other day I had HAD it.  I was done. done. done.  It was about half an hour before Kevin got home.  He'd just informed me that our van still wasn't done being repaired (a day and a half had turned into 5 days, and this was just an air conditioning repair!) and our large grocery shopping trip would have to wait yet another day.  I was out of creative dinner ideas.  It had already been a very long day.  With three of my four boys crying at me about various unimportant issues, things were melting down quickly.  Taylor was being very loud and irrational and I was in no mood to be patient.  I stormed up to my room and shut the door, contemplating how bad it would be to just let them cry until Kevin came home.  But almost immediately the thought struck me.  "Oh, stop it.  You've been doing this for over five years now.  You can fix this.  You are perfectly capable of turning things around down there."  So I walked back out and did it.  And it wasn't even all that hard.

It is the same with spiritual things.  For years my mom has studied the scriptures for an hour each morning if time will possibly allow it.  My scripture study isn't an hour, not even close.  But I feel a shift in my time spent from something I need to do to something I look forward to, something more sustaining and enlightening.  Since Kevin and I were married we've seen the value of daily family prayer and scripture study, as well as weekly Family Home Evening, but have struggled to create any consistency.  Things aren't perfect here either, but we do pray as a family and read at least one verse every night with our boys and usually read a chapter as a couple.  FHE is slowly becoming habit, even if it is thrown together at 6 on Monday night when it dawns on us to have it.

It's easy for me to look at my life and be disappointed in myself.  There may always be some of that, though I hope not.  But underneath it all, under the messes, flops, underachieved goals, and the chaos, I can sense that small but good things are happening, and I think that is worth noting.  


  1. Subtle changes are the ones that last. This was perfect for me today, thanks.

  2. I love you, and that's all there is to it.

  3. I think all mothers struggle with trying to do better and have a cleaner home and more patience with her children. I know I do. If we could just all learn to spend more time in our Bible and praying I am sure God would help us. I too struggle with being consistant in reading and praying with my children. Having 3 boys of my own I know how difficult it can be to make them sit still long enough to listen.

  4. I could have written this. For all my lists and goals and schedules and plans, all I ever seem to have to show is subtle changes only I can see...if I'm looking for them. I need to do better to keep looking for the good.

  5. Loved this post. So often the subtle changes we see (and try to make) in our lives are so unnoticeable to the rest of the world...and yet that should never make the changes or our efforts feel less important.

    Thanks for sharing yet again.

  6. I LOVE your attitude. I love that when things got tough, you allowed yourself a little bit of self-pity, then gathered yourself together and did what needed to be done. I need more of that in my life. You're wonderful.

  7. I need way too many mommy timeouts. I should try harder, you're so right. Thanks for the reminder :)
    I tried really really hard for a whole week to keep the house clean after Chris commented that I did a great job at it compared to a coworker and I think our house is gross all the time. I wanted to be like "super mom" in just one category. I made it 4 days. And now that I've been working, it's worse than ever and I'm so depressed about it. Maybe I should have started more subtle too- like keeping the kitchen counter clear. That should be doable and maybe it will become habit like your's have!


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