1. My Purpose.
At the beginning of May, I purchased the 2016 Ultimate Homemaking Bundle from Stephanie Langford because it had two courses I’ve been dying to take: Tsh Oxenreider’s Upstream Field Guide and Myquillyn’s Smith’s Cozy Minimalist Course. 2016 has been a year of discovering my calling so I was especially eager to jump on the Upstream Field Guide. This Guide has so many exercises that help you understand who you are, what makes you happy, and ultimately how to create your life purpose statement. You guys… I have to admit that I was a little bit skeptical that this could actually be done, but her guide works! Here is my purpose statement:
As a beloved child of God, I live to explore the depths of truth and apply them wisely, to bravely connect authentically with others, helping them to realize and embrace their true selves, and to create spaces that exhibit order, beauty, and growth.
I can look back on almost all my meaningful projects, relationships, and aspirations and find that they fit into my purpose statement. I’ve been living it all along, but now I can see it. And now I have a decision filter for all future opportunities that come my way.
2. Swimming lessons with two kids are exhausting when you are in a mommy and me class with one of them.
I don’t think I’ll do it again. It literally took all my energy for the day and I found myself really crabby and even dreading the lessons during these two weeks. It didn’t help that it was cloudy and cold for about half of the swimming lesson days.
3. An ultra simple meal plan is the way for me.
I don’t cook. Well, I do, but only because I have to. I really don’t like it. For many years, I’ve dutifully planned new and creative meals and collected a stash of go-to recipes. But this summer, life with a picky eater has made the process just grueling.
One night at dinner, it just dawned on me. Like a message sent from heaven, “You’re trying too hard,” it whispered. “It doesn’t have to be this complicated.” So I pitched the idea to my husband: “What would you think if I simplified my meal planning to the seven most simple and easy meals, one for each night of the week, and we ate the same meals every week?”
He was on board. So I went through and listed out the seven most basic ideas for dinner, including, yes, frozen pizza and hot dogs. I posted a weekly menu of those seven meals and printed out a standard grocery list that I could reuse and simply add to as needed every week. Boom, done! I cut my weekly menu planning time in half and found myself much happier, though still a reluctant cook.
We also learned that, after about a month, we needed to mix it up a little bit. So I added and deleted one or two recipes and adjusted the grocery list to reflect the change. I think we will probably do this once a month.
4. Exercise is no longer optional as a mid-30 something.
I used to work out all the time when I was unhappy with the way I looked. Then I married a thrifty guy who doesn’t like eating out three times a week and I learned that eating at home does wonders for my figure. So my motivation waned and exercise became a long lost friend.
That is, until a few weeks ago after I threw out my back for the second time. I was trying to help my husband with our latest DIY desk project. See more on that below. If you’ve never thrown out your back before…. PAIN, like you’ve never known. And oh the fear of moving… And “I can’t find a comfortable position.” AAhh!
So I came to the reality check that it’s time to make exercise a priority, not because I’m dissatisfied with my figure (grateful), but because my body actually needs it to function normally. Getting old sucks.
5. I like the finished product of DIY projects but I don’t like the actual DIY part.
This is a hard one to admit because I really wish I were a DIY type of person. I find a lot of joy in collecting Pinterest DIY projects, but it is really my husband who is the DIYer.
Look at this awesome desk he is making for us!
I thought I would be the one totally into painting the drawers while my husband did his wood handiwork, but no, I made him do it all. Okay, it probably didn’t help that I threw out my back when we brought the thrifted desk home, but even after I recovered I was content to let him take the initiative and enjoy the results.
6. How to set up a website.
And we are all enjoying the fruits of my labor…
Let me just say this is not for the faint of heart.
7. The secret to organized toys is not more storage, but fewer toys.
I just started the Cozy Minimalist Mom course a few weeks ago and listened to the first video about organizing kids’ toys. Until watching this, I thought I needed more bins to organize the toys better. What I learned was the opposite. Fewer toys, fewer bins. The fact is, most children have between 3-5 toys they focus on playing with for a season of time. When I thought about the things my kids love playing with, I realized this proved true for our family. So I went through and decluttered the toys and actually ended up with two extra empty bins that I can now use for my stuff!
8.What debt free feels like!!!
Oh, the taste of freedom!
And how about you? What have you learned this summer? Feel free to link up with Emily or post in the comments.