Monday, May 11, 2009

Mama Monday

Today's Mama Monday is--in her own words--a: "home makin', home schoolin' prairie chick. Mama to five pretty precious prairie chicklets and wife of 12 years to a pretty remarkable prairie guy. I consciously strive to live a simple life, tendin' my roost, trainin' my brood and searching out God's purposes and plans for me amidst soap suds, laundry hampers, sippy cups and runny noses. Life is precious. I consider this earthly existence a mere prologue to the great things He has prepared for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose."

Don't you just love that description???

If you have never visited Nichole's blog Praire Prologue, then you are in for a treat!

Stunning photography, words to spur us on, unique and creative thoughts....
a real "Proverbs 31" lady. A visual treat is her blog.

Ladies, I am pleased to bring you Nichole:

Greatest thing about being a mom-- Having people to share daily all of this love, joy, mystery and adventure of life with. To pass on the amazing inheritance of eternal promise to, and to discover afresh through their eyes how wonderful life truly is.

Hardest thing about being a mom-- The fact that life is messy, and noisy, and a WHOLE lot of work. For someone who likes order and quiet and slow, lazy days it can all seem rather harried at times =)

Inspirations-- Proverbs 31, Titus 2, Edith Schaeffer, Elizabeth Prentiss, pioneer women (Carolyn Ingalls, etc). Anyone who embodies a quiet spirit and a strong will to make womanhood all at once soft and gracious and beautiful while paired with an iron like strength of purpose and calling.

Favorite blogs/websites-- Susan at High Desert Home (sniff, sniff), Jewels at Eyes of Wonder, Andrea at The Flourishing Mother (and I'm NOT just saying that...), Heidi at Mt. Hope Chronicles, Anna at Pleasant View Schoolhouse, Ann at Holy Experience. My favorite blogs are ones that breathe "peace, beauty, grace and recognition and appreciation of the simple gifts that grace our lives. I literally feel myself relax and smile and rejuvenate when I "visit" these ladies.

How do you find balance in your life-- Prioritizing and optimizing are huge for me. Allowing for wide margins in my day to not just rush through the motions of my daily routine but to quietly embrace and appreciate them. I would rather take a leisurely 20 minutes to hang my clothes on the line, than a rushed two to throw them in the dryer. Living like this can be a little less "productive" but a lot more balanced. And really, when my life is balanced I get more done and feel happier and healthier than when I am running around on the treadmill of "productivity". I am slowly learning to optimize my time by pairing up pleasure with duty. For instance, if a friend wants to come over for "coffee", I ask them to come for lunch instead. I already need to take that time to prepare food, and sit down and eat it, so visiting in that time doesn't eat up time out of school or house and yard work. Yes, simplicity is key, it's about my being WITH the person, not WHAT I prepare them to eat. as the old quote reads; 'The chief pleasure in eating does not consist in costly seasoning or exquisite flavor, but in yourself.' That's my motto when it comes to hospitality and entertaining, fellowship is the main course. Along the same lines I have started doing evening grocery trips to the city with a friend (supper out is a bonus!), rather than hauling all my kids in during the day or using up weekend time when I would rather be relaxing with friends and family. This grocery run meets three needs simultaneously. I get a "break" from the noise and activity of my busy family, I get my household shopping done and I get to relax and bond with a good friend. Ka-ching. I am loving discovering new ways to optimize my time and get the most mileage out of our day and relationships.

One word that describes you--- Introspective.

Hobbies/interests--- education(any subject, I just love to learn), gardening (I am no gardening extraordinaire but I love everything about it, tilling, planting, watering, weeding, harvesting... mmmmm!!), homemaking, homeschooling, homesteading, horses, nature, photography, poetry, reading, scrapbooking, theology, writing.

One thing that has been on my mind lately--- How if God is love, and we are to be like God, everything we are and do, say and think should be rooted in, steeped in, stemming from.... love. Love for Him and love for others. Really, when it comes down to it, the gospel is all about love.

I couldn't live without--- sunshine and the light of His Presence.

What helps me through tough days--- see above. plus.... hanging laundry on the line (bizarre but true, it's oddly therapeutic to me). hot bubble baths. soothing and uplifting music. reading scripture. getting on a horse or quad, or even just going for a drive around the countryside alone with my camera. snuggling. rest. I swear that the combination of a quiet hour in a hammock, a gentle breeze and sunlight can cure me of most anything that ails me!

Thank you Nichole!!


Aimee said...

Love you Prairie Chick!! :)

Wonderful answers...I'd love to help hang your laundry on the line and do some grocery shopping :)

Andrea said...

Loved Nichole's ideas of combining chores with pleasures or must-do's with people--brilliant!!

Prairie Chick said...

How fun and sweet to be featured here, Andrea. I glean so much encouragement and peace from this quiet and lovely space of yours. Thanks for asking me to play, I have really enjoyed all the variety and wisdom offered from the other Mama's.

L.L. Barkat said...

Nice to see you here, Nichole. I don't believe I knew your real name until this moment! The word 'poetry' warmed my heart (but you would have expected that, right? :)

Thanks, Andrea. For highlighting a beautiful prairie mom!

mom2six said...

I enjoy Nichole's blog and how fun to listen to more of her heart through your questions. Thanks.

Alleluiabelle said...

I love you too Prairie Chick! This was wonderful, but then that is you..a beautiful, wonderful, loving individual, wife, mother and daughter of the King! I so enjoyed reading more about you and your family life.

And by the way...your name is absolutely beautiful too!

Hugs & Blessings,

Dawn @ P.S.He loves you.. said...

Yep PC rocks..she's a great example of the virtous women!

Chris said...

I'm spreading the sugar... congrats on the feature... you deserve a web-squeeze, Nichole. I count myself lucky to glean the wisdom in person from this terrific prairie-gal... totally blessed by your friendship.

tonia said...

excellent! love those thoughts on balance and love seeing that happy, beautiful prairie-chick face.

K-Sue said...

Wonderful feature on one of my favorite bloggers.

Susan said...

Oh, I'm so happy to see my friend, Nichole, here! A wise and beautiful woman, a kindred spirit. Always encouraging.


Jennifer said...

Lovely woman, she is.
Lovely blog to feature.

I find myself continually drawn to her edge of the prairie.

Anonymous said...

Oh - I loved these words - thank you so much for sharing Nichole and thank you Andrea for these marvellous Mama Monday interviews to give us opportunities to get to know a little bit about other mums to inspire and spur us on. Another blog to add to my favorites! Blessings from Australia said...

very cool!