Monday, January 25, 2010

Mama Monday

Today's Mama Monday is a local friend of mine. 
I can't wait to introduce her to you all!
She has recently started a blog:
One Thing Spoken, Two Things Heard
So make sure you pop over there and give her a "hello" to encourage her! Pleeeasse??
My friend has a precious heart for the Lord and for people...
She serves endlessly and inspiration!
I love her honesty...
I am happy to introduce you to

Natalie's precious children...

Natalie and her husband Tom

Greatest thing about being a mom— Watching and guiding as each unique person I have been blessed to mother grows and matures. Feeling the pride and joy that result when one of my children master a skill they have been working on or treat another with compassion. Always having someone to snuggle with. Oh, and watching them sing, I LOVE to watch my children sing- especially praise songs!

Hardest thing about being a mom— For me the hardest thing about being a mom is the 24/7 nature of motherhood. You cannot take a break because you are cranky, cannot nap because you are exhausted, cannot just leave the house alone because you need some peace and quiet. You must be always available to little ones who need constant care and supervision. This level of servant hood does not come naturally to me so I must battle my flesh in this area AND take time to refresh and renew my mind and spirit whenever I can.

Favorite blogs/websites—
Oh boy! I have too many but since you asked :)

The Pioneer Woman
Big Mama
Boo Mama
Beth Moore's Blog
The Flourishing Mother
Bring the Rain
My Charming Kids
A Life Outside the Box
A Holy Experience

Oh and Facebook! How could I forget???

How do you find balance in your life—
This is something I am always working on but I have discovered that those mornings that I get up before all the kids and have an uninterrupted quiet time with the Lord always lead to a more peaceful morning routine for us all. I've have also taken the time to understand myself more and the unique way God created me. For many years, I just pushed aside these needs and inclinations and focused almost completely on my role as mother. But that was not healthy and led to negative patterns of behavior and interaction with my family I am now working to change. I am trying to honor the way He made me by making time for intellectual pursuits (reading, blogging, visiting museums, etc.), socializing with friends, etc. I have found that honoring these parts of my personality have enhanced my patience and ability to think clearly and parent my children with more grace.

One word that describes you- Witty

Favorite color-- Periwinkle

Hobbies/interests--- Facebook (just keepin' it real :), reading blogs, writing, scrapbooking (though it's been a long time)

I couldn't live without— Well, besides my Lord, my family and my friends, right? That would have to be my iPhone and Macbook. We may need to plan an intervention soon ;)

What helps me through tough days--- Knowing I have friends praying for me. Taking time alone in a quiet room to catch my breath, meditate on scripture and pray. Calling my husband or a friend to talk it out or just vent.

What the Lord has been speaking to you about lately— This year has been one of great growth in the Lord for me; one in which He has revealed to me, with gentleness and grace, of course, just who He created me to be. A year in which I have learned that I have not been honoring that unique bent He gave me. I would love to say I have learned this without pain, but that would not be true. It took a season of despair and turmoil, that has not yet completely passed, to get my attention. But He has it now and I know that I need to be stretched, to look inward and begin to operate on God's opinion of me and to begin to honor the way He made me.

What do you like best about yourself— I like that I am organized and can think analytically.

If I could encourage a young mother, I would say--
Wait, aren't I still a young mother :)(hee, I meant a first-time mother!)  O.k., I would advise her to always remember who she is as a unique woman made by God and to honor that creation by taking care of herself and her needs and even some of her desires. I would tell her that God loves her, the person, and expects her to mature into her full potential not just as a mother but as a woman, His daughter. I would explain to her that doing this is an act of service to her family, who will benefit from a happy, healthy wife and mother, and an act of worship to the God who created her.

One book you would recommend to read--(besides the Bible)
Wow, this is hard! Can I give you one book and one bible study?
Book- Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza. Such a compelling biography about how one woman's faith helped her endure the Rwandan genocide and its aftermath.

Bible Study- Believing God by Beth Moore--  Life changing! Love Beth Moore!

Thank you Natalie!!!!!!!


Aimee said...

Wise words!! Love her thoughts on balance and advice to a new mama. We always seem to have to learn these lessons the hard way :)
I recognize her from FB posts on your statuses :) Welcome to the blogosphere Natalie!

Anonymous said...

Natalie, Thank you, I enjoyed many parts of this...including the James verses on your blog about wrath not producing righteousness. The Beth Moore study sounds interesting. Mary Brooke

Natalie said...

Thanks Andrea for hosting me! And thanks ladies for your kind words :)

jlwh12994 said...

Love you Nat you rock! Can't tell you how encouraging it is when another mom says out loud "you gotta take time for yourself" and it's OK! xoxo