Watch Your Time

There’s only one post published about this and you are welcome to read it here. I haven’t written about this nearly enough. The sand timer is considered a valuable asset in my daily life. It’s helps me watch the time.

My Mama receives the credit for teaching me the value of time. There wasn’t an idle moment in our home. She always had us doing something and the two words you never let Mama hear you say were, “I’m bored.” On rainy days if she couldn’t find enough for us to do inside she would say, “Read a book.” When we’d run outside to play, or over to a friends house, her parting words were, “Watch your time.” We had to be home in time for dinner.

In March of 2020, I was walking through a large home store, just browsing the shelves when I spotted this sand timer. It was sitting on a shelf like it was out of place, or the only one left. It didn’t have a tag of description, only a sticker with a bar code. I pulled out my phone, opened the timer app and started the timer. I carried the sand timer through the store letting it run and watching the timer. The sand ran out at 30 minutes.

When sitting in front of the blank page, I flip it over, and keep an eye on my time. Whether it’s morning pages, a Blogpost, or a project, I sit and work on it for 30 minutes at a time. Do you ever get to the end of the day and wonder where the time went? With the sand timer you can watch your time.

Grace and Space

I was texting with a friend while she was getting ready for work, and wanted to wish her a good day. The words clicked along the tiny keyboard as, “I hope your day is filled with grace and space.” Those words reminded me of my friend Dawn, who uses them as her tagline when signing off.

Today hasn’t gone as planned. My landlord scheduled his handyman for today to make some much needed repairs. I don’t know if you remember our dog Winnie, but I’ve mentioned how people make her anxious, especially if they enter her house. I placed her on a lead, walking her with me around the house, but she knows that means someone’s coming in.

I wasn’t able to get much work done sitting at the kitchen table. The handyman was walking from room to room, in and out of the front door, and his power tools made unfamiliar noises. I decided to step into my bedroom just to have some space to breathe, with Winnie in tow. She relaxed and immediately hopped up on my bed which is a treat for her.

I grabbed my laptop and sat down with her. As I’m typing there’s a lot of loud noises coming from the other room, but from where I sit, you can hear the rain coming to a halt. There’s a Cardinal eating birdseed outside the window and heat is coming through the vent to ensure we stay warm. I’m suddenly not worried about what’s not getting done and instead realizing what this day has to offer.

It seems all we really needed was to step into some grace and space.

The Bottom of the Page

It’s still dark outside my window, and the house is quiet and still. I’ve already written my morning page, and I call it that because I only write one page. Julia recommends 3 pages of longhand, but that feels like work to me. It’s more enjoyable to pull out one blank page and fill in the empty space. I’ve been noticing a certain feeling toward the page of the bottom.

The halfway mark has a satisfying feel to it, and once you get there, ‘it’s all downhill’ as they say. The pen glides back and forth across the page, making it’s way to the bottom. I always pause when there’s only enough room left for two lines to be written. How do I want the page to end? Sometimes I simply wish myself a remarkable day and sign off.

The page is not about what you write, it’s just asking to be written. It’s become my daily disciple before the day begins. A certainty to be relied upon in this uncertain world. For the past few days there’s a feeling of accomplishment, or completion when filling in the bottom. My soul is at ease at the bottom of the page.

Feel the Music

Okay lovelies, this is about as country as I can get. I’ve been following this little guy for years, and he’s finally becoming more well-known. Here’s his new release and my December theme song.

I begin pondering December in November, and now that we’re fully into December, I’m relishing it! Taking stock of what this year has brought, and discerning what follows me into next year, but making sure to leave ample room for new. December is opportune time to make edits to your story, and I’ve been making minor adjustments and tweaks to mine, but there’s one thing I know for certain. A non-negotiable and this song says it all.

If you can’t put your heart into it, for the love of God don’t do it! If you’re in it, you’d better be in it, for the love.

Charlie Worsham
Charlie Worsham-For The Love

Greenlight

When driving down a straightaway it’s exhilarating when every stoplight is green. I can usually breeze right through half a dozen on green before one turns to red and calls for a stop. Once you stop, there’s a wait involved before it returns to green.

I get excited for greenlights because they mean go, and I’ve always been the type person who is sitting on go. Fall is here, we’ve turned our clocks back for daylight savings time, the holidays are upon us, and year end is right around the corner, but I’m still keeping an eye out for the greenlight.

Over the weekend I drove into town to pick up some household items, and leaving the store I decided to exit the way of a large intersection full of stoplights. As I pulled up to the intersection every light was red, so I stopped and wondered out of all the red lights, who would get to go first?

I was turning right, so it was no big deal because we can turn right on red in Texas, but this intersection was full of vehicles just waiting and hoping for their greenlight. Looking up at the stoplight in that moment I saw a green arrow dropped down in place of the red. My lane was first to go.

That’s the thing about greenlights. You don’t know it’s yours until you pull up to the red. It’ll turn green when we least expect it. Keep your eyes open for the greenlight.

Do It Now

The quote in the feature photo was sitting at the bottom of the page of my momentum plug-in. Everyday it shows some type of inspiration in big, bold letters on the page, but recently I’ve been steadying my gaze toward the quote at the bottom. It’s smaller font, but has more of an impact.

My week off was spent slowing down a little each day. By Thursday, I felt completely relaxed, yet attentive. On Wednesday my daughter told me I looked more like myself than I had in months. I took some time to ponder gift giving and my favorite type gift to give is something I’ve used and loved. It can be anything such as a candle, a book, or a chocolate bar that was more an emotional experience than a piece of chocolate should be.

I’ve been ordering small items this week with each person in mind. I don’t know if this would be considered early holiday shopping, or if you purchased your gifts months ago, but for me it’s early and feels right. I usually wait until closer to Thanksgiving, but as I Googled each item and placed it in the cart, that still small voice within was saying, ‘Do it now.’

I didn’t wait for a Black Friday sale, or combine all the gifts for free shipping, though some offered it. Each cost less than $20, but big and bold doesn’t equate to meaningful in my world. Love tends to arrive in small packages and will spread to take up every square inch it’s offered. This feels more intentional than previous years, and there’s an element of ease.

I haven’t found the ‘right’, or ‘perfect’ time for anything of worth, but in the past I’ve waited for better timing and it evolved into missed opportunity. Some believe timing is everything, and it’s celebratory when our timing aligns with a divine plan. This year is coming to a close my darling, so whatever you’re meant to do, do it now.

Feel the Music

He wrote I drive your truck, sang by Lee Brice. My daughter wants to cry when she hears that song. Maybe because I drive a truck and don’t ever see selling it. Me-Trying to outlive my Ford F150. 😂

This song is about finding God in the everyday. There’s a man in recovery named Mark Goodson, who publishes an extraordinary Blogpost once a month called The Miracle of the Mundane, and like Mark I find God more often in the mundane than anywhere else. Mark sees the miracle in eating a bowl of cereal in peace because he has small children. Recently he wrote about Faith that you can read here, but I love how simply Mark sums it up.

Faith makes anything possible. But more importantly, faith makes what’s most important certain.

Mark Goodson

When this post publishes, my week off will have officially began. God has been tapping me on the forehead for this time off and like Mark said, my Faith made it certain. God also knows reminders get my attention, so just in case I needed one, it showed up Friday afternoon. My daughters dog Winnie was sitting near the kitchen just watching me stare out the window trying to process a work related issue. I returned her gaze and called her @winnie.

Larry Fleet – Where I Find God

Just be still my darlin’, and feel the music.

Connectedness

It’s a word often used and I’ve been thinking about it all year. I’m practicing ways to be more intentional with connectedness. Case in point, my friend Dawn over at Aging with Grace.

Around a month ago, she published a post about a book she came across on her bookshelf and was going to read again. The name of the book is Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach. While reading Dawn’s blogpost, I spotted that same book on my shelf collecting dust, so I wiped it off and vowed to begin reading it as well.

It’s a daily read, so I leave it laying out in pain sight. When my world gets still, I sit down and read it, knowing she’s read the same page. I’m sure the time of day we read varies as I picture Dawn reading it first thing in the morning with a cup of tea. That would be the proper way and I learn from Dawn the proper way to do things.

But that’s in my mind’s eye, maybe she’s more like me in having to make an appointment with myself to sit down and read it.

This morning as I strolled through the house, I realized it’s a workday and the schedule for today began rolling through my mind. I pressed the pause button on it and made a cup of coffee. Once the cup was complete, I went to my corner, sat in the chair, and picked up the book. Turning to today’s page and reading it over while sipping my magical brew gave me a full sense of connectedness.

What we have on our plate can wait while we share a moment of connectedness.

Click here to enjoy Dawn’s original post entitled, “Abundance Isn’t Always Simple.” She’s a soul filled Writer. 💖

She’s That Neighbor

When she told me she was moving, I was happy for her, but sad for me. We didn’t have to see one another everyday to know we had each other’s back. She was my neighbor.

When we had the snow and ice storm earlier this year, she texted me for a Chemex filter. I placed some in a ziplock baggie, and made my way through the snow to her back door. I loved the fact that with everything we could run out of, the Chemex was a priority.

That day confirmed, she’s that neighbor.

I’ve written about ‘M’ before in Just Say Yes and that Blogpost was written through inspiration from her. I can’t fault her for moving because she went back home to be near family, and it’s a joyous occasion when we know where home is. Thursday was my birthday and she revealed herself in a magical way.

I noticed a car parked in front of my house. A woman stepped into the yard smiling brightly, and holding a bouquet of flowers. I stepped outside to meet her and she asked, “Are you Barb?” I nodded my head in agreement, not fully certain what was going on. She strolled down the path to stand in front of me, held out the bouquet and said, “Happy Birthday from M!”

She remembered my birthday and asked a friend to bring flowers! I felt her presence in that moment. Today, she lives in Kentucky, but we chat every week. I believe we’re closer now than when she lived behind me, but that’s how it happens. People like her move into your heart, not just your hood.

Now, she’s in a new neighborhood where she’ll make new friends and soon they’ll discover. Not only is she a forever friend, she’s that neighbor.

I Need To

Earlier this week while writing my Morning Pages, I noticed the final paragraph was filled with these three words, I need to. There’s a smallish list of things I’ve been setting aside that my heart wants to do.

I need to write some letters to friends, and have been wanting to for weeks. I need to fill out an application for free parking at the lake for my truck, and hopefully have my paddleboard in tow. My board hasn’t been dropped into the water all year. I need to keep calling around about a new windshield for my truck that was hit by a rock and cracked. Things like that.

This month I’ve been looking at commitments, and diving deeper into them. It really made me take a look at what I’m committed to and the quality time I give those commitments. I need to recommit to dating because right now it feels like men are making an appointment to see me. My two jobs are taking all of my commitment, but that’s not good for the mind, body, or spirit in the long run. We need to carve out time for what feeds our hearts.

That night I was reading my Magnolia magazine during a huge thunderstorm. What began as a distraction from the thunder and torrential rain became just what I needed. I didn’t realize this month’s issue was focused on commitment, until I read what’s posted below by Joanna Gaines. This year, I’ve learned to have commitments without projecting any particular outcome and it’s a very freeing experience to just remain committed, no matter what.

“So, as I sit here now, thinking about the pursuits and the people I’m committed to, I’m not worrying about outcomes, or how they should look through the lens of a culture that so highly values results. Because maybe the true purpose of being devoted to something isn’t found in how it ends, but in the way it takes shape~~or even ends up shaping us~~along the way.” ~Joanna Gaines.

So, my lovelies, this weekend I’m going to find some stillness to hear my heart and do what it says I need to.