Happy fall, y’all.
The y’all is a nod to my mom who turned sixty-five on Thursday. (Happy birthday mom!) She may be sixty-five, but she’ll always be a fresh-faced and bright-eyed girl from Wichita, Kansas.
It’s my personal theory that sixty-five is the new forty, anyway. Minus a bum knee, I think she’d agree. We just got back from mom and Dave’s house where we had ourselves a little birthday shindig, complete with pizza and cake. Actually, mom, Dave and Greg had chocolate truffle cake. The kids and I had Olivia Superfree cookie dough cupcakes that are basically free from all the major allergens and flavor. That was a joke. I’ve been abstaining from gluten and dairy for so long that the allergen-free cupcakes are nothing short of divine, even if a little stale. I may have heard angels singing.
I’m rambling. I need to keep this Weekend Roundup short and to the point.
But short and to the point isn’t my specialty. I prefer long and drawn out. It takes at least 1,000 words before I have a sense of where I’m headed, of where I’m going.
Speaking of rambling, in my last Weekend Roundup I got swept away describing my whimsical bird mug that matches Kate’s. So much so that I forgot to link to Kate’s essay. I was only supposed to mention the matchy-matchy bird mugs as a way to introduce Kate’s essay. My bad. I blame ADHD. And the stomach bug.
Here we go again with the essay. Before I get to it, you’ll remember that I stole a screen shot of Kate’s mug from Instagram but decided it wasn’t Kosher to do so. I deleted everything from my photo library because that’s what rule followers do. But in the end Kate made an honest woman out of me. She commented on a Facebook post and gave me permission to use the screenshot of her picture after all.
Anyway, let’s talk about Kate’s essay. Kate writes about how she and her husband said goodbye to weekend fights. I wish I’d know Kate when the kids were younger. Greg and I could have used the encouragement found in How My Husband & I Stopped Fighting on the Weekends. Now that the kids are older, weekends are the best. Spoiler: it’s because we don’t have babies, toddler or preschoolers in the house.
But we do have elementary age kiddos, three of them. And one happens to be a highly-sensitive tween who wears her heart on her sleeve. Vanessa Hunt featured a hilarious post on At the Picket Fence about the things no one tells you about parenting teenagers. Swoon! It really is hysterical. We could all use a good laugh these days, don’t you think? Those of you from my old church, you need to know that I’m talking about a different Vanessa Hunt than the one we know. You can read new Vanessa’s work here. If you’re curious, the other Vanessa can be found here. They’re both wonderful.
This next essay will appeal to mamas of littles and bigs alike. As a mama of three, I more than appreciate Anna Burgess’ take on helping kids develop their own faith in God. Because, let’s face it, we can’t do it for them. If you’re a parent, go ahead and check out Anna’s post right about now. I’ll wait for you.
Please take a moment to read another one of Erin Whitmer’s essays. You’ll remember her from the Weekend Roundup I finally got around to publishing on Monday. I’m probably taking everything out of context; but Erin’s essay reminds me of the verses in 1 Kings 19 about Elijah seeking God on the mountain. Elijah searched for God in the mighty windstorm but God was not in the wind. Next Elijah searched for God in the earthquake. But, you guessed it, that’s not where God showed up. Again, Elijah looked for God in the fire. Surprise, surprise, God wasn’t in the fire. Instead, our loving Father came to Elijiah in a gentle whisper, which leads me back to Erin’s essay. Do you Hide What God Wants to Reveal? is about learning how God reveals wisdom and truth in the everyday. I think it’s easy to miss God when we look for him only in the grand and glorious moments–and he’s certainly there. But if we’re only looking for him in mighty ways, we’ll miss him in the mundane. I don’t mean to sound holier-than-thou but I see God in many places. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, adult ADHD is both a blessing and a curse, but mostly a blessing for it leads me back to him in random moments and random connections.
I’m just going to come out and say it: I’m nervous to share the following words by Caroline Saunders. Caroline was featured on Sadie Robertson’s website in March. I think I’m too old to know about Sadie Robertson, but here you go. Except Sadie’s name sounds familiar. I want to say from an interview on The Happy Hour With Jamie Ivey, but maybe not. By the way, if I ever get bored of Weekend Roundups (again, ADHD), then without a doubt, I’ll end up putting together some sort of Weekly Podcast Roundup. Now that would be fun. How I love me a good podcast;.enough to use poor grammar.
But the following post is from a talk by Caroline Saunders, not Sadie. I’m cringing as I type this because I’m about to share a purity talk for high school and college students. Yep, I’m gonna linky-link to a purity talk. I dare you to read about it here. I’m just going to come out and say it: I think the church gets a bad rap when it comes to purity talks, and rightly so. Telling woman they are damaged goods and such isn’t cool. Yet ignoring what the Bible has to say about sex other than “don’t do it” is also a big no-no in my book. It’s a tricky balance. Certainly, there are repercussions for risky behavior. But here’s the thing, God is in the business of redeeming; it’s what he does best. Also, I appreciate the way Caroline doesn’t shy away from addressing the guys in the crowd. Anyway, in the next few days you’ll probably find me poking around Caroline’s blog at writercaroline.com. Caroline’s voice is unique. She doesn’t beat around the bush when it comes to biblical truths; but she’s funny, very very funny.
The next-to-last essay of the last day of September is about steps we can take when anxiety rears its ugly head. I found the bullet points at the end of the article extremely helpful, and I’m not a bullet point kind of girl. It sounds too much like the Bullet Journal, which is most definitely not for me. It’s as if anxiety is the latest buzz word. So many in my close circle are living with it, including myself and my favorite little boy. Gosh, even our dog has anxiety. I’ve heard it said that if you’re in the market for a Ford, then all you’ll see are Fords, Fords, Fords, everywhere you go. I’m a Honda gal through and through, but that’s besides the point. Anyway, go check out Reversing the Anxiety Tornado by J. J. Gutierrez, It’s a must-read for the brave one who struggles with anxiety. Yes, the brave one. You’d better believe you are brave if you’re living life with anxiety. In fact, you are a living, breathing example of someone who is being brave when life is hard. You can find J.J.’s essay, complete with bullet points here.
Ramblings aside, I just can’t stop myself from giving you one final essay. I mean, really, why stop at 1,000 words if you can possibly squeeze in 1,500? No, I promise to stop before then. This time. Anwhoo, Bethany Barendregt wrote a particularly moving piece called For the Late-Blooming Souls. I savored each and every word of this thoughtful reflection. Yes to this! Story of my life, right here! How I love quiet and stillness, how I thrive in slowness. I don’t think my kids got the e-mail.
In just a little less than fifteen minutes it will be the first of October. I can hardly believe it. As I said before, happy fall, y’all!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend, especially Sunday. Savor its slowness. Rest up, dear ones. See you soon.
P.S. Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday dear mom
Happy birthday to you!