A Common Life Lived with Uncommon Joy

Archive for the ‘Hello Monday’ Category

Hello Monday…the Candy Coated Version


After saying “I feel like this week has run me over” and “I’m exhausted” one too many times, I decided last week to take a rest  from everything not completely necessary for our everyday lives.  I took a lot of naps, cancelled a lot of things on our calendar and made a lot of sandwiches for dinner.  It’s really hard to commit to rest when life is whizzing by you but I’ve learned over the years that if I don’t want to hit the wall physically and emotionally, when my body says it needs rest, I need to listen.  Amazingly, at the end of the week, the world was still turning, nothing had fallen apart, and I was a much happier and well-rested wife and mama.  If you’re feeling chronically worn out, like life is dragging you through it, please let me encourage you to REST!  Even God rested after six days of creation – if He needed a rest then us mamas need one too on a regular basis.  

Let’s say some hello’s, shall we?

Hello Monday…

Hello candy…

Halloween is still three days away and already my house has been overrun with candy.  Today I bought four large bags of candy to hand out, which I’m sure will all be gone before 8 pm, just like it is every year.  This year, we’ve decided to have some hot chocolate and apple cider for parents to drink while they’re taking their kids door to door.  It’s gonna be a bit chilly out! Ross will stay home and hand out candy and drinks with me in the front yard, while Michael takes the girls around the neighborhood to collect their loot.  I love greeting the kids, seeing their costumes and handing out candy! 

Hello pumpkin…

My children made the comment the other day that they’ve never carved a pumpkin before.  At first I told them, “Of course you have!”, but after thinking about it awhile, I realized the last time we’d bought and carved a pumpkin was the first year in our house, nine years ago!! So technically, Ross has carved a pumpkin before but none of the girls have.  I picked out a nice big one this morning and now it’s sitting on the porch, waiting to be cut.  After about ten minutes on Pinterest looking for ideas, I’ve decided to delegate this task to Michael.  It will be a great bonding time for him and the kids, right??


The kids on our street, ready to go trick or treating (2011)

Hello costumes…

My favorite part of Halloween is making costumes.  I love to come up with “out of the box” ideas and then tackle the challenge of how to implement them.  My kids are getting really good at coming up with costume ideas.  Here are the plans for this year: I’m going to be a smarty pants, complete with big nerdy glasses and smarties candy taped all over my pants.  Ross is going to be Pumpkin Pi (orange shirt with a Pi symbol on it).  Gracie is going to be a scarecrow – I love her costume because she will continue to wear the jeans and plaid shirt through the rest of fall and winter, so it’s cute and thrifty! Amber chose one random, obscure character after another before finally settling on Pocahontas’ friend.  Luckily, she was already Tiger Lily at her Peter Pan birthday party, so we already had everything we needed for her costume. Georgia wanted to be a green fairy, but not Tinkerbell.  I had a really hard time finding green fairy items that weren’t Tinkerbell, so we switched to a pink fairy and now her costume is all set.  Michael has more fun watching us dress up and usually doesn’t have a costume, unless we’re doing a group thing.

How about you? Do you like to dress up for Halloween? What’s your favorite Halloween candy? What are you saying hello to this week?




Hello Monday…the Return to Normal Life Version

This weekend was all about relaxation and recovery from two weeks of chaos.  We spent a lot of time on the couch, snuggled under blankets with the kittens, watching one movie after another.  Except for Saturday morning!! I woke up at 6 am, dragged the kids out of bed in the misting rain and headed to Lowes Motor Speedway for the 2013 Charlotte Color Run.  I walked the 5K with my friend Dawn, her husband and her girlie.  We started out with pristine white shirts and ended the race covered head to toe in a rainbow of color chalks.  It was awesome!!


Let’s say hello, shall we?

Hello Monday…

Hello mundane

After a crazy week of wedding trip  preparations, followed by a weekend in Georgia, then a family funeral immediately afterwards, I’m aching for time at home with nothing on the calendar.  I cleared away all non-essentials and we will be spending the week here at home doing mundane things like school and housework.  I think it will be a great respite after the chaos of the last few weeks.

Hello cool weather

Dare I say that the warm weather is gone for good?? I love sweaters and scarves and sweatshirts and jeans.  My poor girls though were totally unprepared for the cooler temperatures.  I’ve pulled the fall/winter clothes out of storage and we’re starting to weed through them.  I’m determined to pare down their clothes to a few outfits each this season.  After pulling all the toys from their room, putting their dresser in the closet, and only leaving the bunk bed and a bookcase in their room, their room is still a disaster area more often than not.  I’m determined to figure out how to keep their room at least halfway tidy.  How do you help your kids keep their rooms clean?

Hello family devotions

I’ve wanted to institute a daily time of family devotions for a long time now.  Michael and I have talked about it a few times, but because I tend to take over things and I’m trying to let Michael be the spiritual leader, I haven’t done anything to make devotions happen for us as a family.  This week I read an article that said men desire to lead devotions with their families but need the creativity of their wives to choose something and show them how to implement it, then step back and allow him to take the wheel.  When I asked Michael for his viewpoint on the article, he wholeheartedly agreed and asked me to find something we could use.  So I’m on the hunt this week for a great family devotional that will have us reading the Bible together every night after dinner and discussing our spiritual walks together.  I’m hoping to find something aimed toward my older two that we can then explain in simpler terms to the younger two, rather than choosing something for the younger two that will bore the older two and not really teach them or challenge them in any way.  Do you have devotions as a family at your house?  Do you have a particular book you love to use?

What are you saying hello to this week?

Hello Monday…the celebration version

We spent a fantastic weekend in North Georgia celebrating at the wedding of our cousin Michael.  I say our cousin because he is actually related to both me and my husband by blood.  What?! His daddy is my fifth cousin on my Granny’s side and his mama is my husband’s second cousin on his Maw Maw’s side.  Michael was also the ring bearer in our wedding, which coincidentally was 18 years ago today.  And so we spent our anniversary weekend surrounded by friends and family celebrating the beginning of a new marriage and the continuing journey of our own.

Ross, Gracie, Noah, Amber, Silas and Georgia

Ross, Gracie, Noah, Amber, Silas and Georgia

Michael and Julie were married at an old camp meeting campground.  They had perfect weather.  All four of our children were in the wedding – Georgia and Amber were flower girls, Gracie was the guest book attendant and Ross was an usher.  Ross also got to pull the white runner down the aisle just before Julie walked down.  My nephews, Noah and Silas, were also in the wedding.  Julie went out of her way to include all the kids in her wedding, a true reflection of her heart to make the day about family.  It added a lot of details to her planning but it was so appreciated and it was worth it to her to see them thrilled to be a part of the special day.



Let’s say hello, shall we?

Hello Monday…

Hello family…

While I was in Georgia celebrating the wedding, I got a phone call that my grandma went home to Jesus.  My grandma had not been well for quite a while and I was expecting the news to come any day now.  This week my cousins and aunts and uncles will all gather to celebrate her life and the legacy of her faith in our family.  My grandma raised five boys, two of whom became pastors and another who has been on several mission trips, and was blessed with 13 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.  The influence of her love for Jesus runs deep into our family tree.  She lived her life well and so we cry, we miss her, but we celebrate her arrival into heaven.

grandma and sons

Uncle Eddie, my Daddy, Grandma, Uncle Kenny and Uncle Mark – Uncle Gary was waiting for her in heaven when she arrived, along with my Paw Paw, two of her grandchildren and one great-grandchild

Hello anniversary…

Today is my wedding anniversary.  I’m still so in love with the wonderful man God gave to me.  He gives me butterflies every time he smiles.  After 18 years of having children, being broke, buying a house, foster parenting, deaths and births, heartache and joy, I would do it all over again.  We spent yesterday afternoon in Helen, GA visiting an old grain mill, a winery and an antique store in a house more than a hundred years old.  We had the best southern meal we’ve ever put in our mouths.  And we drove six hours in the car, talking and catching up with each other while the kids were mesmerized by movies and iPods.  It was a glorious day.

What are you saying hello to this week?

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