a simple year

Deep down, I think we all crave simplicity. In an age where we’re hardly functional without caffeine and our smartphones, trendy buzzwords like ‘minimalism,’ ‘simplify’ and ‘less’ resonate with us.

It may be because my generation grew up with a new Happy Meal toy every week, sports are year-round activities for our kids nowadays, or we just jam pack our own schedules up for whatever reason. But, at the end of the day – whether we’re self-professed minimalists or ready to be featured on Hoarders; no matter how busy we are or what we accomplish – the want for more time, more space to do what we want to do with the people we love resonates with all of humanity.

That’s why I write. That’s why you exercise/craft/run a small business/go on vacation/insert hobby here. Because it makes us feel alive.

My four year old had the scissors out for her preschool ‘homework’ yesterday. Like bait to a fish, my two year old also grabbed a pair and opened them wide, sticking his finger in the middle of the blades.

You all, I’m not naturally ‘playful.’ I don’t love puzzles, art or any kind of games. I’m essentially a fun- hater. But, in an effort to keep my son’s fingers intact, I scooted next to him to help him cut.

As I was helping him, it hit me that I seriously have no recollection of teaching my girls to use scissors. I think they learned in Sunday School, to be honest.

Sometimes I pray to remember the sweet moments with my kiddos, the times I feel guilty that life is moving too fast. So I stop, and so does the whirlwind. And I notice the sticky, chubby two-year-old fingers in my own, the giggle and the simple “open, shut,” of the scissors cutting a jagged line. It is my hope that when I’m old and my house is empty, I’ll hold on to that sweet sensation and memory.

 

I read a quote from blogger/magazine owner/supermom Lara Casey this week. “Everyone ends up somewhere, few arrive somewhere on purpose.”

Truth. Without purpose, my afternoons and evenings get filled with the cyclic necessity of laundry for six, making gourmet meals (i.e., tacos) that no one likes, and (ashamedly) a lot of social media.

While I’m choosing not to drop any of that, I am seeking simplicity this year. We moved to a much smaller, less-maintenance house; I stopped folding my kids’ laundry; we’re planning another RV, hiking adventure vacation trip. We’re starting a small business.  I’m trying to implement a little, fun activity I do on purpose with my kids each afternoon. Nothing extravagant. We’re not quitting jobs or living off the grid. We’re talking getting out the basket of PlayDoh and finding the one container that’s not dried out.

I’m just trying to mark the years and love the people Jesus gave me with a little better purpose.

And maybe drink a little less caffeine and put my phone down a little more.

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