Monday, August 24, 2015

It is finished.

How many times do we get to say it is finished? Or do we usually say I quit or I am moving on, it isn't for me...
I have many unfinished projects around the house and ideas that never get put into action. I have thoughts and sentences that never get finished and dinner plates half eaten. I have papers sorted but have yet to be filed and laundry yet to be put away. I even have raised garden beds already purchased but still waiting to be put together. There is also a pile of fabric to be sewn and canvas to be painted. 
I believe we get so busy that even though we start out with good intentions we end up having to drop something because we are over booked. 
I am super great at starting lots of things but I don't usually get to see the finished product. Some of  this is just life and others are because of time management on my part. 

The thing I actually did finish is simple but it means so much to me. 

I LOVE everything about new journals, pens, and office supplies in general. The problem with that is i have a handful of half used journals....all of them amazing. 
I have one for my personal bible time and another one for my church bible time. 

Of course I would, I love journals. 

This summer while traveling I took only one of those with me and when we got back in town I misplaced the other one. 
I decided to go all crazy and just finish out the one journal. *gasp

With school starting back up I have been getting up early and daily writing in my journal. I have prayers in it, scriptures in it, ideas for skits written out, and just plain old doodling in it. Yesterday I fully finished out the journal. I used 100% of the pages. Front to back is filled to the brim and I love it! I am proud of my self for finishing strong. 
It is along the lines of setting a small goal like my exercising 7 times this month. I wanted to finish out this book and I did. 
I happily have many other journals to choose from and finishes those out ( one of them being my new Spider-Man journal) 
Today I started a new -old- journal. There will be many prayers in there and possibly some skits that might one day get used. The bigger picture with this is that I finished something. The bigger picture is what goes in the journals. The bigger picture is the lessons learned and lessons taught from these notes. 
It may just be a journal but it is something that years from now my kids and grandkids will be able to pick up to read and truly see the heart of who I was. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

It is ok to take time

Like millions of other people, jerry and I live very busy lives. We have multiple responsibilities that take us all over the place. It is a normal day for me to go from one title to the next. I am a mom, wife, sister, child, leader, minister, teacher, photographer, house cleaner, chef, and business partner with jerry for cornhole and Advocare. 
I think as moms it is easy for us to get lost in the titles we hold. They sometimes block our view of what is important. It doesn't mean the titles are bad, it just means that we have to -on purpose- set them aside and keep our vision focused. It may look different for some moms depending on what you believe and how you live your life but it doesn't change the  fact that without focus our "vision" gets blurred and we stumble. 
I have not yet fully mastered this habit in the summer when alarm clocks do not wake but during the school year I choose to wake up just a little earlier then needed to put God first. 
You have probably heard this before so hang with me if you have but imagine a bucket where you have to fit a few large rocks, sand, water, and small pebbles into the bucket. If you add all water first then anything else that you add will simply make a mess. If you add sand first and fill it up you won't be able to add but maybe a few pebbles and a small amount of water. When you do it with the right balance you can add it all in. You can add the important things first, for me it's God then family. Then you can add it the small pebbles, things like sports or even servicing somewhere like your kids school or church. Next you add in the sand, things that are just simple- no important things ( I won't even out examples bc it can be so different for each family) The last is the water, when you keep your priorities in order it all works out. If you are having a hard time knowing which is the big rocks and which is the water then ask friends that your trust, pray about what to keep and what to drop. God is always faithful in helping me see what is the big things in life. 

I have also found that because I give so much of my self to those other titles that I easily lose the one I started out with. 


I have so many things I love to do. When I don't get to have me time I can feel the stress build up. I can feel the bitterness creeping in. I can feel the depression settling like a fog. At first I don't know what it is, I see my bad attitude. I am aware of it at times but don't always see the cause of it. Now that I am getting a bit older I am more skilled to see when things start to shimmy its way out of order. If I don't put God first then things splash out of the "bucket" making a mess. 
I also have to take time to do what I love or I become I mess. My down time is just that...downtime. 
God did not give each of us these fun giftings and desires to just have in the back of our mind behind all the titles we hold. He gave you those things that bring you joy to do just that...bring you joy. The shocking thing is this - it will bring others joy as well. 

Happy people are beautiful. 

Tonight after the kids dinner of....wait for it....
Cinnamon toast ( see Instagram post) 

I came to my room and colored. I love art and I love poetry. That is a gifting of mine and it brings me joy. I can guarantee that my family will also have joy as I have ME time. 
I may still be tired tomorrow but I am refreshed. I chose God first thing this morning.  I chose family today and after school. I am choose me this evening and all order is in place. 

Is the order of what goes in your "bucket" a work in progress or do you already have it with a pretty good system? I would love to hear how you help balance out your titles to keep your vision focused. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

A page from my journal

I post this because I don't think I am alone. I love where I am and where my family is on their walk with God. But I don't want to stay the same. This is my prayer for my family as we we grow. 

August 16, 2015 
#1 goal in my life - a continual growing relationship with Jesus. 
I want to be full of joy, grace, kindness, wisdom, and knowledge for the things of God. 
I want my children and people who see me/know me - to know that I love Jesus. I want Godly advice to come from my mouth when I speak. I want wrong responses to be at a minimum and my loving responses to be at a high. 

I want my wants to be more then a want. I need it to be the cry of my heart. I need it to be my prayer, to be my walk, my life. I need actions to go with this prayer. 

Lord, I pray that in times of frustration that I choose joy. I pray that I have a Godly balance to things that need grace but not so much that I allow myself to get ran over by eyeryone's good intentions. 

I pray that I do not speak empty words. I pray that my words have power to hold up the hurting and broken. I pray that I choose kindness over speaking angry. This may require me to take my eyes off of the offense and choose to see/find something good. Help me to do that Lord. 
I pray that I take/make the time to talk with you daily. I pray that I read your word daily. I pray that my kids see this example. You have chosen me to be their first example of Christ on earth. You chose Jerry and myself to be their first teachers. Help us to teach them the things that matter. Help us to start in the areas we may have missed. Help us to teach kindness by being kind. Help us to teach joy by having joy. Help us to teach patience by having it ourselves. Help us Lord to show love by responding in love in all areas, to all people. 

Lord, I want so many things right now, today, immediately. Help me to see the small victories as well as the big ones. Help me to rejoice in them. Help me to also learn from the failures and use it as a stepping stone to keep moving forward and upward. 

Thank you for loving me. Thank you for protecting me. Thank you for loving and protecting my family. Thank you for providing. Thank you for sending your son and for calling us your child. Help me to do your will - always 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Another week bites the on how to survive

Can we get a shout out to this lovely day of the week? 
Hey there Friday! It is so good to see you! 

The kids have survived their first week back to school and we have big plans for our first weekend. Rest and relax! 

I imagined my time this week to be filled with lunch dates, cleaning house, and quietness. Instead it has been filled with cutting fabric, marking line, sewing, and finishing filling over 100 cornhole bags. It has been filled with painting a large order of boards for the computer company Intel and more for another company. 

I am one very tired mama and the kids are very tired as well. My two littlest ones are mama babies and friday are particularly hard after a full week of being gone. 
When Caden was in Kindergarten I noticed that by the end of the week he was full out in brat mode. He deserved a spanking but what he needed was quality time with his parents. 
Now that Ava is in school and she also thrives on that quality time with her parents it is vital that we make time for them. 
Keeping an eye on our kids behavior and knowing what their little love language is can be life changing in the response to all areas of their lives. 
Here are a few tips I have learned over the years to help adjust to any new season. 
1: when we are needed to wake up early I always wake them up about 30 mins before the needed wake up time. For example, my elementary kids need to be to school at 8 and since we live close to the school they can wake up at 7. I then choose to wake them up around 6:30/6:40 so they have that free time to slowly stretch and get out of bed. I have found this to be helpful my myself and for them every. single. morning. They are not the best morning people and that extra time helps meltdown be at a minimum. 

2: we have one set place only for school clothes. There is one spot to place the dirty ones and another to grab the clean ones. This way there is not the rush of searching for that perfect outfit. 

3: figure out your child's love language immediately. If you have no clue then think about ways that they like to bless you. Do they want to sit with you while watching a movie, or hold your hand while walking? Do they stop wha they are doing to give you a hug? Do they make you birthday cards or get well soon cards? Maybe they tell you your hair looks nice, or that you did amazing on that song. How ever they show love to you may be the way they need to be told they are loved. Once you figure this out pour it on them All the time. 5 minutes here and there make a huge difference. Make every moment count. 
This week I have been emotionally spent. To be honest I don't want anyone talking to me or needed anything from me but that is not life. I am a mother to five amazing children who need me every day. So instead of hiding and rest by my self I chose to hug them at every possible chance. I told them I loved them and missed them this week. I watched a movie with Kori because we are watching through all the Harry Potter movies, we are on the 2nd one. I asked them all about their day and I listened.  Was that painful? Kind of. Was it worth it? In the long run, absolutely! 
This week is in the books and tomorrow is no school. As we say 5 days on two days off. Tomorrow we enjoy our two days off by going to spend the day cooking out with their grandfather for his Birthday. 

Did your children start school and did your week go as planned? Do you know your kids love language and what ways to you plan to fill those little hearts this weekend? 

Daddy and Caden twins and Caden getting some loving. 

Waking up is hard to do. 

Thursday, August 6, 2015

The battle between homeschooling and other options.

My oldest daughter is now 17 and in the 11th grade at a public school. She didn't start out in the public system though, I home schooled her until the 3rd grade. My son even had the "privilege" of having me as a teacher his kindergarten year.

I was supposed to home school them, I am a Christian, it is what we do right? 

I never even prayed about if I should do it. I just did. 

I ordered all the kits that others suggested. I wrote out a lesson plan to follow and even had a cute little school room. 

But I never asked God if he wanted me to home school. 

Everyone was doing it because everyone I knew were Christians....and that is what we do...we home school. 

There was a problem though. 

I hated teaching kids to read. 
I hated the books we used, the lesson plans I wrote and was daily so angry at my kids that we avoided teaching so I didn't hate them too. 

I not once seeked advice about what to do. 

I did not register them into an umbrella school and for 4 years carried around so much guilt of all I was doing wrong. 

I never prayed for grace to get through each year much less each day. 

I don't really know if it was or wasn't God's will for me to home school them during those years because I didn't ask. It might have been but because I never truly asked for help i was choosing to do it in my own strength. 
I imagine it to be like a toddler learning to tie their shoes. The parent is standing right there waiting to help the little one but the toddler keeps trying and trying, all the while getting so upset because it isn't working out right. When In fact, all the toddler would have to do is ask for help. 

When we finally decided to put the kids in school we chose public schools.  Gabi had already finished 3rd grade but we chose to have her do 3rd again to have a sort of free year and catch up on things I didn't teacher her (like.. everything) 

I said I am never homeschooling again.
I loved the idea of it. I loved the purpose behind it. For us it was about giving our kids a good foundation to start off on before they hit the real world. 
I still 100% love and support everything about it but it was not for me. 

A couple of years ago I felt like I was supposed to again home school one of my kids. 
I said "heck no God, we have talked about this. I am never homeschooling again, remember?" 

For about 3 months I prayed about it and even my husband said no way. Not going to happen. 

This time we did pray and we did seek advice. 

I had my third child home, being her teacher for 3 months and then I could not believe it....I knew I was supposed to put her back in public school. 

I felt like I would look like a failure. I felt like a failure.  

Now here I am 8 years out from my first homeschooling experience and 2.5 years out from my second. I have learned some things. 

1.always prayer about decisions and then continue praying for guidance, grace, joy, and creative ideas to make it fun. 

2. Not all Christians are supposed to home school. 
-if all the Christians were home schooled then there would be no Christians in the public school systems telling others about Jesus. Gabi has told so many people about Jesus and how He loves them right now where they are. She is leading bible studies and always inviting friends to church with her. 

3. Just because God says yes to homeschooling this year doesn't mean that is His -one time- answer. 
-with homeschooling Kori for only 3 months I couldn't figure out why until about a year later. She craves structure and thrives in it for school work. That is not something I can naturally give. 
She did however need mom and daughter time. Her toddler years of life was filled with me giving birth to the one baby at 5 months, being diagnosed with MS 7 mths later, getting in a car wreck a few months after that, getting in another car wreck one month after that ( neither one my fault), and then losing Caden's twin a couple of weeks after that. Her entire toddler span was filled with attack after attack on our family. There was no real bonding time. It was only survival time. 
The three months of teaching her were amazing. She did awesome. I did awesome and went from saying I would never do it again to being open to what ever the Lord had for us. 
Putting her back in after the 3 months (only one semester of teaching) was very hard. I now see that if I would have ignored that and kept her out longer, we would have hit a path that would have put us right back to where we started. 
She need to mom time and then she needed to get back in the structure of school again. 
Homeschooling her for that short amount of time gave her a full three months with no other big kids here to interrupt her time. Out relationship is so much better for it. 

Homeschooling is hard and hats off to those mamas who chose to do. There will be days that you want to call it quits and you may even cringe at the thought of school starting again for one more year.
But, if you have heard from God that this is what you are supposed to do then there will always be grace for this path He has set you on. 
Picture it as God's grace is like oil for an engine. With it everything runs smoothly, without it the engine can only run for so long before it shuts down. 

Tomorrow my 5 babies have their first full day of school and right now I am happy where we are but open to any changes the Lord may have and that is a pretty good place to be. 

My two high schoolers. 

My middle schooler. 

The elementary babies. 

What ever path you choose, own it. Don't be ashamed of your path if it is different then those around you, it may be different because you are paving the road for those coming behind you. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Is this the end?

Thousands of words.
100's of pictures. 
A ton of thoughts. 
48 post. 
Just one voice-putting all I have out there. 

The summer is done for us. School starts tomorrow and I started off the summer wanting to write a blog every day about being thankful. I have written about my family, my alarms, comfy beds, a pregnancy loss and another loss, this time Cadens twin. I wrote about being diagnosed with MS, free vacations, each of my children, cooking new meals, and how Jerry and I met. I wrote anologies about God's love for us and how the enemy will put things in our path to slow us down. I even wrote about our travels and spending time with great friends. 

I am so thankful for this summer of the thankful blog. It has caused me to daily look at my surroundings and be thankful. It has caused me to think more of how my words have power and words are not all created eaqually. 

The summer is finished so essentially the blog could be finished. But, we will make  this  the end of the summer of thankfulness blog and the start of just normal. I enjoy writing and some people have said that they enjoy reading my blog. The habit has been formed and that was a goal with the daily writing. 
Thank you to those that have read and those that commented. It has meant a lot. 
Tomorrow we go back to our school normal and we have high hopes of getting better organized. I might even post some tips on how the heck we figure that out. 
So until then you can enjoy post of life as the Turneys know it and see how we navigate 5 kids, being full time ministers, having a cornhole business, photography business, Advocare business, and even Real Estate. We are crazy busy but we love each other and have learned a few tips along the way. 
This blog will continue being a record of my story. 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Pick a day and just start.

I love new beginnings. 
I need new beginnings. 
Tomorrow starts the -back on track- food beginning. 
Any time I make a change I have to pick a day and just start. 
In 2010 when I started to train for the half marathon I picked a day and started. 
When I juiced for 10 full days, to help heal my body from a messed up gallbladder, I picked a day, went shopping, and just started. 
Today I have picked a day and will start. 

Jerry and I both want to detox from our traveling and I am dealing with some eczema on my arm that I am pretty sure can be healed by cleaning up my eating. 

Last year with it being my first year for everyone to be in school I felt for sure I would have tons of time to get to the gym. I just knew that this was the year to get in shape and that by my 38 bday I would be looking #greatby38. 
Boy was I wrong....time slips away with a blink of the eye and I went to the gym a handful of time. I did not hit my goal with even the slightest tap. 

This week the kids go back to school and I will again have all this free time to hit the gym. 
Ok. That is a lie. 
I will try to make time to go to the gym.
 I will however exercise at home. 
Yesterday at Aldi's I spent $10 on this bad boy. 
It is simple and it is awesome. I can do this while I watch tv or in-between cooking. I can set a time goal and the best thing is it is easy for my back. 

It was yesterday that Jerry and I picked our day to start and that gave me today to get it all set up. I went to the store and now my fridge is prepped and ready to help us win. We are adding juicing and salads into our daily food intake. I am excited to keep track of our eating and see how it effects our health. 
I am curious how long it will take for my eczema to heal up. 

Starting something new can be a challenge. It can take some time to get all your ducks in a row. You may need to map out and organize a plan before you start. No matter how you have to do it, just do it.

What is something you want to change in your life? 

Take the time, pick a day and just start. 

The Turneys are ready for tomorrow. We are in charge of our health and we are worth it. 

You are worth the change that you want to happen. If you feel like it is out of your hands then your change could simply be praying for God to be in control and then immediately thanking God for being in control. 

You can do this. While you have breath in your lungs and your heart is still beating you have time to change.

  Be a better you!