Monday, January 25, 2016

New Year Goals

I've heard several people comment on their "word of the year" and I really like the concept of focusing on one area to really lock into and try to improve upon.  The word I have felt (screamed!) prompted to address this year is "busyness".

Let me be the first to say, whenever someone asks me how we are, my reply is typically "busy".  Or many a time I've shared on the blog just how chaotic our life seems to be.  This year, 2016, I'm making a goal to slow the heck down.

In our culture, exhaustion is a status symbol.  If we share with others just how busy our lives are, it is implied that we live meaningful lives that others can marvel at all we have to do.  I have noticed often that many people actually brag about how chaotic their life is, as if to prove just how busier they are than you.  You ever felt that way?  I have.

In the first few weeks of 2016, my Lifegroup (aka church small group), my daily devotional and a Bible study I'm in have addressed "busyness".  When my life feels chaotic I'm stressed, anxious and quite frankly, not very kind.  I lash out on the people I value the most and feel pretty terrible.  And I don't really like that Emmalee.

We had a pretty stressful close to 2015, and our calendar isn't any less full entering the new year, but in gaining a little perspective about slowing down mentally and physically, I already feel so much more peace in my life.  There have been a good many things already this year that would typically cause that twisting knot in my gut whenever I thought about them, but I'm finding myself leaning into Jesus, praying and trusting that issues will be resolved and chaos will not reign.

There's so much we lose out on when worry consumes us and busyness keeps our minds (and bodies!) racing.  I have been a victim to this for much of the last several years.  It's not easy.  Schedules are insane, commitments are never-ending, the Mom-brain never shuts off,  but for me, what matters most is not feeling frazzled and actually being able to connect with my family and my friends.

With all the craziness 2016 is sure to bring, I'm committing to myself that "busyness" will not consume me this year.  I will not take pride in it.  I will do my best to lean into Him.  I'm fully aware there will be failure on my part, but in recognizing it as an issue for me, I already feel like I'm a step ahead.  As my favorite devotional, Jesus Calling says, "Approach this day with awareness of who is Boss!"

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Left You Hanging

As the title reveals, I feel like I've left you all hanging.  Here it is the middle of January and I've barely posted anything in the last month.  That should tell you that things have been a bit nuts in the Hinton Household.  Busy and yet, lacking in content to share with you all.

So yeah, we had a very busy few weeks around the holidays.  Though, it was amazinggggg to not have anything on our schedule (for the most part).  Meaning, Elena was home from school, home from the Jackson Center, only had a few therapies over break and we were able to breathe for the first time since this summer.  Not only that, but we had Chad home with us too practically the whole month of December, so it was wonderful to spend time all together as a family without the typical chaos of our constant running.  We stayed put for both Christmas and New Years, which also helped.  Not having to run to 10 Christmases makes the holiday actually feel like it should, time spent with family, relaxing and remembering what we are celebrating.

In January, we always hit the ground running.  Elena returned to school and the JC.  Chad just returned from a tortuously long annual sales conference (and yes, we survived, barely).  And here we are, mid-January.  Honestly, not much to report though.

Elena has been a bit off her sorts in the last couple weeks.  So much so that it warranted a very scary trip to the ER on Sunday (just as Chad was getting on a plane, thank you very much).  They found nothing wrong, which was both comforting and frustrating but she isn't 100% herself yet.  So yeah.  Calvin is crazy energy kid.  Like, how is it that a human can have that much energy?  If only I could have a sliver of that!  Though, he's been such a trooper.  We lost our Wednesday babysitter (while Elena is run to therapy and the JC) this month to a full-time teaching position, so I've had to drag him with me to three-hour afternoons in Mooresville, which is a bit tricky in January.  We had a lead on a new sitter, but that fell through and now I'm in a bind so if you know anyone......  Otherwise, the poor kid will spend every Wednesday, napless in a waiting room for three hours with occasional trips to the Mooresville Meijer.  We're both not looking forward to that.

See, not much to report.  Maybe in the next couple weeks I'll have a spurt of energy and actually something meaningful to share with you all.  Sorry I've left you hanging AND faked you out with this boring post.  If you need me in the meantime, I'll be looking for a babysitter and some inspiration! :)

I'll at least leave you with some cute pictures of the kids:

Elena working with her PT, looking SO big.

We survived without you, Chad!


Lights out

Calvin has discovered how to torture Pete and he's doing great at it!

Friday, January 1, 2016

It's a New Year

Goodbye 2015.  Maybe I should say good riddance?

2015 was not the greatest year.  I'm pretty excited, actually, to bid it goodbye and look forward to the possibilities of a new year.  2015 felt like an entire year of tough things happening to what seemed like everyone I love.  It has been a year of doling out encouragement to people around the clock.  The prayers lists have been long.  The heaviness of their pain has weighed on me.  I'm ready for a new year full of hope, happiness and minimal crises.

Looking back, we have most definitely had bright spots and loads of blessings.  There ALWAYS are, but 2015 ranks up there as being a toughie.  So today, my prayer for all those on my prayer list is for hope to outweigh the hurt this year, confidence to outweigh the fear, and for faiths to be strengthened and renewed.

Our family looks to 2016 encouraged that it WILL be a better year, full of blessings and love.

Happy New Year!