writings in a planner
Photo by Bich Tran on

Out my Window: Rainy but warm.

Enjoying: Christmas lights, slower schedule, kindness of friends and family

Listening to: The Holy Post Podcast I listened to some back episodes, along with their bonus one dealing with the Christianity Today Editor’s OpEd and then the backlash. I was thankful for the bonus episode where the crew gives history, and then processed why this is so important to discuss. I stumbled into some new podcasts that were interesting. I listened to Russell Moore’s conversation with George Will. I am a George Will fan. I appreciate his writing on politics and on baseball. He always has something interesting and thoughtful to say.

Reading: By my bed: Moved Adorned: Living out the Beauty of the Gospel Together by Nancy Demoss Wolgemuth to my pile by my bed.
My carry around book: Started When Air Becomes Breath by Paul Kalanithi very good so far. Much easier read than I thought it would be. Paul is a very good communicator and able to share his processing.
I am on a book launch team. I was given a three chapter peek at She Laughs: Choosing Faith over Fear by Carolanne Miljavac. Review coming, along with some promotions on social media. Definitely a simple read. Carolanne tells stories, some very funny that she weaves a truth through to encourage. This book Launches on January 1. Looking forward to reading and reviewing the rest of the book.

Pondering: Habits and disciplines. Plans and steps for the pieces I know I need a plan for to be healthy. I have been thinking about what it looks like for me to be healthy: body, mind, and soul. As seen in this weekly daybook, certain areas just have not realigned once I lost the pace I had. For me healthy body looks like exercising consistently. I am mostly a schlogger, but know I need to make more effort with my core, so I am figuring out what things I do enjoy, and how to easily incorporate them into my days. I know I need to move for my physical, mental and spiritual health. I need to make this a priority. Healthy me takes time to read. I feel like I have been better about keeping books around so I grab those instead of mindless scrolling. I do need to add in a lighter fiction book, so when I am really fried I will still pick up something to read. Thankfully, my quiet time in the Word has a structure that is loose enough for me, but also keeps me moving forward. I am still doing a read through the Bible that goes through April. There are built in makeup days along with no reading given for Sunday. I have also appreciated the order they have listed there is connection between readings but also alternating between some of the slower Old Testament Books and then the New Testament. I would like to be more intentional with Scripture memory because this is helpful for my mind when it starts spinning. If I am working on memorizing something I can switch to that to stop the train wreck my brain is leading me to. The other piece for me is a home with some order and cleanliness. I am not a neat freak, but I can tell what level that busyness has overtaken me by my messes. This adds stress to my life that I do not want, so I am pondering what is doable and manageable in this area for me in this season. One of my favorite books in this area is Keeping House: The Litany of Every Day Life by Margaret Kim Peterson. I probably need to re-read this one.

Learning: Last week I shared under pondering about a phrase my friend shared, “unrealistic expectations are premeditated resentments.” During holidays I am realizing, this is what I do, especially with extended family and the many complicated situations and relationships. I keep hearing that phrase and have been conscious about allowing it to impact me. It reminded me that in some ways the antidote is what I had been pondering and practicing quite some time ago with the wisdom found in “it is what it is.” I wrote about it here, It is not in a nihilistic way but in a not putting unrealistic expectations onto a situation or relationship. Allowing it to be, and enjoy the good gifts that are there. I was blessed with some unexpected conversations that were positive this year. I went in with gratitude instead of “premediated resentment” which I am realizing has tainted certain relationships for a long time. This will take time to relearn but I think it is worth it.

The other thing on Christmas that added to learning was our Christmas was different than expected and I was disappointed and sad. I had a visiting son not be able to come into my house because his body decided to be highly allergic to something there. I was having a hard time with it, and was wondering if I had had “unrealistic expectations” or something because of my reaction, and then I read something from Brene Brown. Her Christmas, along with her family’s was spent in the hospital with her mom. She wrote that this is where they wanted to be, with her mom and each other, but their motto was “you have the right to piss and moan… just do it with a little perspective.” I love that! I kept repeating to myself that this was frustrating as I carried all our meals over to the church, which was thankfully right next door, so thankfully we had somewhere for my son to be but it was not the end of the world. We were together. Yes it was less than ideal, but we could still celebrate and had much to celebrate. I feel like these two new to me phrases are powerful freedom givers that I need to ponder and apply more, but this Christmas they were very powerful and helpful in helping me be present and enjoy what was, and dislike some of it, but “with a little perspective.”

Home Life: Thankful for Christmas lights. Candles, yummy food, Christmas specials, we had our annual viewing of Charlie Brown Christmas and Emmet Otter and the Jug-Band Christmas

Fitness and Mental Health: We had a few beautiful days. I got outside and schlogged.  Mental Health: Christmas lights make me happy. Candles burning. Trying to make time to write, even if it is starting a post and saving it for later.

Giving Thanks: For my family and friends, thoughtful gifts, new stack of books, yummy food, church next door so we had somewhere to celebrate with my son, my husband being able to see things and adjust quickly while I was still pouting, vacation days

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