the dizzying detail.

  when i was a little girl, i would write lists before our family trips, something like this:

things to take to grandma’s 
1.  cabbage patch doll.
2.  doll clothes.
3.  book.
4.  walkman.  (yep.)
5.  word find.  (see?  i’ve always been a word dork.)
6.  pink camera.
7.  film.

i liked getting all the details together.

what i’m noticing now, at near-37, is that God is a big detail Guy.  He wraps up small (insignificant?  heck, no.) bits & strews them along the path of my every day.  i’m noticing them more & more, & today was a particularly spectacular show of detail:  a slow day at home with the kids & andy,. warm weather.  hot breakfast.  tea shared outside on a makeshift picnic table.  reading to the kids.  reading bob goff (if you haven’t, you ought to.  go now, friend.).  tinfoil dinners.  calling my parents.  little baby toes through the open doorway at naptime.

i know, none of those seem that impressive.  we’re nowhere near disneyland.  or even leaving the house for that matter.  but the ordinary details of my life, taken with eyes wide open & drunk in slowly?  you may as well set me on fire.  i just can’t stand how good my life is, infused with the goodness God plans for me.

which begs the question:  how do i stay here, in the clearing, sun shining warm on my bald head?  what pulls me down off the mountain, clutters up my eyesight, distorts this beautiful inheritance of hope that i know to be mine?

a few things i’m beginning to notice:

  • less stuff = cleaner space.  excuse me while i beat my dead horse, but i can’t not say this, my own personal chant:   less stuff, clearer head.  less stuff, clearer head.  less to organize, less to pick up, less to yell at the kids about. . . .
  • which segues nicely into this bit:  a clean space is a clean space in my head.  what i own serves me better if it’s not chaos at all hours of the day.  with four children at home for their schooling, creating & reading & jumping & casting wooden wand spells (no actual spells are cast, never fear.), with one of them being a toddler & a boy (double whammy, anyone?  anyone?  just at my house?  okay then. . . .), believe you me when i tell you:  WE INVENTED CHAOS.  but my heart sits lighter when we restore order at least once a day, usually before bed, & with the kids help.  (i’ve waved the white flag on mama-does-it-all.  heck-to-the-no.)
  • music perks up the soul.  i tried it today, after reading sally clarkson, one wise old mama.  maybe this isn’t true for everyone, but music sets me a little closer to heaven, as long as it’s something uplifting.  i don’t even mean classical, or instrumental.  just not tunes that berate God or humanity.  & let the kids pick some every so often, too.  it’ll make them especially nice, because you’re in control & you say when youtube or pandora gets shut down for the afternoon.
    not sure where to go?  here, let me help you with that:  a little gregory (& if he’s not instantly one of your new favorites, i’ll refund your money.):
  • look deep into the eyes of your little folks.  & if you don’t have little folks around you anymore,  look deep into the eyes of those you have.  you’ll see a whole world wanting you there, inviting you in, offering you a new spin on the same old day you’re living.  those eyes just may make your day.

you can see that at near-37, i still enjoy a good list, minus the cabbage patch dolls.

but what i’m curious about is this:  how do you keep your head above water? how do you stop & notice the God-spots?  what’s setting you on fire these days? (hopefully not your children. . . .)  i’d love a little tiny and small sharing in the comments or on facebook;  you folk inspire me, ya know.

p.s. — i apologize wholeheartedly if my linky links aren’t spot-on.  what i lack in technical ability i make up for in charm.  🙂

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