Monday, March 02, 2009

Mama Monday

I am so excited to share this Mama Monday with you!! If you do not have the pleasure of reading Kari Jo's blog "KJ the DJ: Sacred Ordinary ", then you will get the pleasure of learning more about Kari Jo today.
Kari Jo is the fabulous mother to four children: Nathan (9), Henry (6), Caroline (4), and Betsy (3).
I had been reading Kari Jo's blog for awhile, and knew that she lived in New York City. She is also friends with Betsy--the first "Mama Monday". I got the chance to meet Kari Jo one cold January morning last year, when I accompanied Betsy to a Mom's Group Bible Study as a guest. I have to tell you, it was as if I were meeting a celebrity! Kari Jo glows and is luminous--it can only be the work of the Holy Spirit in her life. She is one of those women I want to approach and ask,
"Will you be my best friend?"
I am blessed to be able to have met her and every once and awhile email her, but of course always read her lovely weblog.
Ladies, I bring you Kari Jo:

1. greatest thing about being a mom: i never would've been
this amazing at laundry. really, i never would've known
how deeply selfish i am w/o four young children to serve.

2. Tell me about living in New York City:
moved to nyc 3 wks after getting married.
we're staying because of the unique vision
of the gospel here,
the radical interdependence of christian community,
and because of our church,

oh, and we gutted and renovated a townhouse together
with other Christians; one family, one couple,
and a single friend,
and so we live in a unique christian community)

Kari Jo and her family surviving and thriving in city life...

2. hardest thing about being a mom: cutting myself some slack and not
feeling overly-guilty (sinfully so. conviction is okay
but obsessing is not) about my ability/inability as a mother/woman.

3. how you find balance as a mom: some seasons it comes naturally-ish. other seasons i can't find
balance with a flashlight and a stick. making sure the non-negotiables are
in place (scripture reading, confession, fresh air, creative outlet,
physical outlet, coffee) helps in the busy seasons.

4. hobbies/interests: design, architecture, i just took a 2-day sewing class
which has juiced up my creative-side (the city quilter, totally recommend
it), scripture memory, I'm learning how to (appropriately) ride a bike in
the city, a floral-design class @ studio sweet pea, and a digital
photography lesson.

5. Plug your at-home business:I'm a hand writer. sounds silly, but people pay me to
write things for them. i send thousands of birthday cards a year from the
CEO of a major ny company to the children of his employees. for 3+ yrs, I've
forged his signature multiple times daily. nice. really, i love to write
in flourishy/modern script, so i do personalized stationery, wedding
invitations, event invitations/menu cards/place cards/etc, and random writing
for photo shoots. Check out Kari Jo's site at: City Writes

6. Favorite blogs:
this month:
Chez Larsson
Oliver and S
Sugar City Journal

7. Verses you've been thinking of lately:

-matt 20:28 (for the son of man did not come to BE served,
but TO serve,
and to give his life as a ransom for many.)

-psalm 119:32
(i run in the path
of your commands,
for you have set my heart free)

-col 1:15-21

-phil 2:1-14

What the Lord has been speaking to you about lately:
psalm 37:7
(be still before the Lord
wait patiently for him.)

no, really, kj.
write things down.
listen some more.
think and pray.
then speak.

I'd much rather shortcut the hard work
(prayer, scripture, waiting, praying again)
and talk to cory, to a friend, to my children,
to anyone rather than waiting and praying.

but His ways are right.
and i will wait.

Favorite color?
pinkety pink pink.

 Tell me something you couldn't live w/o: (1) the right pen on (2) the right paper.
(1- staedtler, preferably.
2- 110 lb, preferably)

(1- micron and/or marthastewart are okay in a pinch.
2- vera wang paper is divine.)

Any advice to a new mom:
give yourself grace.
give yourself the benefit of the doubt.

now, go find some believing moms to surround yourself with
because they'll give you grace and encouragement
when you can't do it yourself.

(they'll truly administer the Word of Grace to you)

What restores you as a mom:

praying with my kid.
asking what they're thinking about God,
about what it means right-this-very-moment that
our identity is in Christ,
asking them how i can pray for them,
which of their friends i can pray for
(i love to hear what they're observing about others)

talking spiritually w/ my kids
reminds me that we're on the same page,
that we belong to the same Father;
what encouragement
and significance this brings
to our constant interactions.

13. Name some books that changed your life:
-life together, dietrich bonhoeffer.
i re-read bits of it weekly.

-heirs of the covenant, susan hunt.
oh, that's why God made families.

-renewal as a way of life, richard lovelace.

-utterance of the heart, john newton.

-i love the word impossible, ann kimmel anderson.

 Describe yourself in one word:

 Favorite things to do with your kiddos:
carousel in central park,
hands down.
it's the perfect 30-ish minute saunter
from our house, so we're refreshed and
worked-out a bit when we return home
an hour and a half later.
(two hrs. if we hit magnolia bakery
on the return trip)

their favorite thing to do with me:
play a game.
a board game.
pushing them on the swings.
blokus. memory. connect four. chess. operation.
any game.

Thank you, Kari Jo!!I really, really, enjoyed your answers.I know you all will too.

Kari Jo has graciously offered to send a free handwritten card from City Writes if you leave a note in the comments saying, "I love The Flourishing Mother".:) I will draw five names.(Sound good, KJ?)
Winners announced this Friday.


Aimee said...

How about I REALLY love the Flourishing Mother!!! Does that give me bonus points!?!

She sounds so cute and fun...I love the photo of her fam in the middle of the city...I just can't fathom that kind of life and find it fascinating. I love how full of grace she seems and her focus on "identity in Christ"...amen to that.

Iowa Birdie said...

What a treat to hear from a mother so far from where I am mothering. Your Mama Mondays have been such a treat to me. Thank you!

I love The Flourishing Mother! I really do!


laurel said...

I love, love, LOVE the Flourishing Mother!! :)
Kari Jo, I know our paths will cross sometime in the future (and I still think it is so crazy that my child ended up at your child's birthday party, the day after I discovered your blog, though we live hundreds of miles apart!). Your blog makes me so happy and encouraged. I always look forward to your posts. I think that Andrea's description of you is just perfect! I am looking forward to checking out the books you love.

alli said...

i love the flourishing mother!! and congratulations on your new little boy! I am about to have my fourth in 6 weeks - 2 girls first and this will be the second boy. Exciting and exhausting, right?

Alli from Greenville, SC

Sinner Saved said...

'I love the flourishing mother'.

Vicky, UK

MamaBear said...

Although I have recently just found you, I (too) LOVE THE FLOURISHING MOTHER!!! I feel blessed everytime I visit, and this post about Kari Jo, well, it honestly sounds so romantic!:) So foreign and far removed from slow paced life here in rural Saskatchewan! I totally agree, sounds like I'd have asked for a new best friend too!:D

Emily Ruth said...

This was such a great post--your blog makes me feel connected to other mothers and I need that.
I LOVE the Flourishing Mother! And I heart you too; )
-emily in arizona

Crystal Osterink said...

Well, this is the first time I have read "The Flourishing Mother" but I read KJ daily and couldn't agree with you more. She is inspiring and I wish she were my next door neighbor. So... in order to qualify for a card I will say "I love the Flourishing Mother" Hm.... is that a "means to and end or what" or an end justifying a means" or what?

Our Lovely Life said...

Thanks for sharing such a wonderful mama with us. You sound like you have a wonderful life Kari Jo!

I love the Flourishing Mother!

debbie bailey said...

"I love the flourishing mother".

betsy norwood said...

i was hoping miss kj would be featured :)) what a great post from an extrodinary woman! i too want to ask kj to be my very best friend!! (she's THAT awesome yall!) just another example of how Christ uses his family to encourage and inspire us in our daily walk. as a mama also living in nyc, kj has given me more inspiration that she even knows! And I LOVE THE FLOURISHING THE MOTHER, but she already knows that:))

mylife said...

I love the Flourishing Mother!!

Sheila said...

Wow! A lot of chew on in that interview! Thanks so much.

I love The Flourishing Mother.

Anonymous said...

I love the flourishing mother all the way over here in Slovakia! :) Rebecca

Anonymous said...

KJ, I loved what you wrote in #s 8, 11, 12 and 13. I am home with littles (B, B, G and G + B).

I am excited too.

I love reading the Flourishing Mother for beauty, love, encouragement and, most of all, for pointing me to God in the midst of my awesome job at home.

I also love God's word and would like to have your Psalm 119 or Psalm 37 reference in your cool writing. Pick me!
Mary Brooke

Flo said...

What fun.

And yes, truly- I love the Flourishing Mother!

Marcelle said...

I, too, love The Flourishing Mother... for being honest and unpretentious, faithful and encouraging. I'm way up in Canada's remote north but I loved reading about a mama living in a completely different context!

Mrs. Olsen said...

I love The Flourishing Mother.

helenw13 said...

I love the Flourishing Mom...I was just catching on up on your fun to have several posts to read...precious...I may be too late for the drawing but at least I was able to give a little shout out!

Kate said...

I love FM - especially those Monday Mamas...thanks for giving them a platform!

Emily said...

I really love your blog ... so refreshing and relate-able. =)

chris said...

i happened onto this blog by mistake! but, it was NO mistake after all! i LOVE the flourishing mother! will spread the word! enjoyed this current interview with kari jo...encouraging..