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Ashley Logsdon
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Awww, I was so young I didn't fully know your story back then. What a sweet recollection of that time. Man, it is incredible to fall in love at the beginning and think THAT is the best - that this innocent honeymoon love is what's so incredible...and then to look back over the years of ups and downs and to find a love that is so different - so much deeper and richer than what you knew when you were younger. I definitely am enjoying marriage more and more every year. So glad to see you two still celebrating your love as well. Happy Anniversary!
Love your references here - marital fitness - that's great! And so true - just like your physical body, just merely existing day to day, or putting junk in, causes you to be unhealthy and overweight. Just cohabitating or breeding resentment over unmet expectations in your spouse creates an unhealthy or non-existent marriage. Props to you for doing a fit camp. Every marriage deserves it and can benefit from it. One of our top marital-strengthening exercises is "bath dates". Trying to coordinate babysitting and then spending a ton to go out somewhere isn't always feasible. But every night, when our girls go to bed, we have the opportunity to create a date night. Around 3 times a week, we light candles and take a bath together - just the two of us, in the candlelight, talking about anything we want. And...crammed into an insanely tiny bathtub. The key? Not the bath, but the physical closeness and the open communication. My fitness workout? Make it a point to touch each other and talk every day. Talk with your goal being to listen intently to the other person - no expectations or objections...simply take in your spouse - body, mind and soul.
Toggle Commented Sep 23, 2011 on Marital Fitness at Stumbling Around in The Light
Great post - I think a mix of writing and video is great - it offers variety and speaks to people in different ways. In this post, you captured the emotion and the positive perspective you have on asking that would have been hard to do in just the written word. This was a perfect post for video. As moms especially, I think it is hard to ask - it's easy to get wrapped up in the family and not look beyond your doorstep for outside help - you understand the craziness for all moms, so you don't want to burden anyone else...and it's easier to just do it yourself anyway, right? But you are so right - when roles are reversed, and someone genuinely needs my help and asks, I'm honored that they asked, I'm honored to help, and I feel fuller because of it - why should I expect anything else if I am in that position? Thanks for the reminder!
Toggle Commented Jul 7, 2011 on On Asking at Stumbling Around in The Light
Just checked out Ronnie's video "Together." LOVE the lyrics on that - wow! Thanks for sharing. As for what we're doing this summer, we're going to http://www.TheNonConformistFamily.com in Canada this summer! Taking a road trip starting in August sometime, stopping in at relatives' houses on the way and also doing some "Mennonite Your Way"-ing up there, stopping at Niagara Falls, and then hanging with the Gordons. Heading back down to land in Dayton Ohio for Labor Day weekend, where I'm making a wedding cake, the girls are flowergirls, and Nathan is MARRYING our dear friends John and Shelley. Lots of fun!
I completely feel you-I've been running every day, yet the baby pooch still jiggles and wiggles and I feel it's never going to go away. It can be frustrating and deflating....HOWEVER, I have two things that keep me going: 1. That old saying that " love is blind?". Reverse roles. Imagine your beloved husband carrying the weight of each precious developing child - imagine his body being stretched out and sagging...all due to the strains of creating a child formed by your love. Would you look at him critically? When he tries his best but that six-pack is a little more like a one pack...what is most important? I know guys are the visual creatures, but I tell you, to negate your husband's love for you just as you are can be a blow to him. And my thoughts are that you would kiss every spot on his imperfect body and tell him what you love most. I'm saying this all for me, as I've been running and running, trying to regain my twenty-year-old body that is fading into a thirty-year-old body, and cringing when I look in the mirror and those last few pounds seem to be glaring at me. I'm not getting in a bikini for a long time. But my husband loves me and all my imperfections. They may be my "war wounds" from childbearing, and I will continually work on it, but I have more important things to obsess over-like enjoying the moments when I am the object of my number one love's desire-he's looking at all that is ME, not the tiny bits of my imperfection. I can't point out any imperfection in what I see in him, so why am I obsessing over him doing anything less for me? 2. This is a biggie-my children. They are too young now to be swept up in the objectifying culture. I know no matter how I fight it, they'll get hit with it at some point in their lives. But I'll be damned if they are going to get a negative self image in our home! They are looking at me and watching me-they watch me get dressed, put on makeup, do my hair...they sense stress, frustration, and they want to mirror it. From the day my oldest followed me in the bathroom and asked to wear makeup, we started talking about what really makes people beautiful. On Easter Sunday we were in the car and she was playing with her pretend makeup she got as a birthday gift, and she was wiping it on her face. I asked her what she was doing and she said "washing it off." I asked what makes her beautiful and she looked at me, smiled, and said "my heart." Your children are watching you and copying you-they are looking to you for what is important, and to see what confidence is. I want my girls to be proud of their bodies-to work to make themselves beautiful from the inside out-no matter how hard you push exercise, fix your makeup and hair and wear sexy clothes, what radiates most is what is beneath the surface-love and RESPECT for the child of God that you are and confidence that God embraces every imperfection in you so you can walk proud and honor your Creator...this is what I want my girls to see. Dressing up needs to be fun, not agonizing and a testament to my identity. This is a soapbox of mine, and something I have been wrestling with personally. I'm competing this Saturday in my first 5k for "Girls on the Run"- a program to build self-esteem in young girls by after school programs that boost self confidence through having fun and running (literally) toward a goal of running a 5k. Their mission is to "inspire, educate, and prepare girls for a lifetime of self-respect, positive relationships and healthy active living." So, finally, one of my favorite quotes: "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." ~Marianne Clements
Love this--so true. And reminds me again of the Evan Almighty clip where it talks about praying for patience, etc...and what it ultimately boils down to is that God doesn't give you patience, forgiveness, wisdom...God gives you OPPORTUNITIES to be patient, forgive and learn. I wrote about this subject here: http://www.mamasaysnamaste.com/2010/01/theres-no-place-like-home-theres-no.html Thanks for the reminder--and yes, I'm also the Mom who wants kids to be kids, but don't for the love of everything holy get my house dirty--ugh! (yeah right, like that ever happens)
Great post--I feel like those of us with small children tend to really get sucked into this--no matter what you are doing, your children are always pulling, and it definitely qualifies as busy all the time! But like you said, we CHOOSE everything that makes us "busy." I am really working this year to not make this an excuse. If I can't do something, it's not because I'm too busy, it's because I've chosen that something else takes priority, and that's okay! Thanks for the great reminder!
First off, talk about a catchy title! Great job reeling me in, brother. Second, wow--I love this. It's so true. For all of us "dreamers" and entrepreneurs, we surround ourselves with positive thinking, self-help, and inspiration...but it doesn't mean anything more than "warm fuzzies" for the moment if we don't take what we learn and apply it in our lives. Thanks for the reminder. I'm choosing books this year that really affect me and challenge where I am - I have big goals for this year to be a life-changer for me, and because of that, for my family as well.
Great post--Nathan and I really liked it. It's been difficult for me because my love language is gift-giving. BUT, the gifts that are the most fun are the ones that are "from the heart"--I really love to give gifts, yet that doesn't mean you have to blow hundreds at the department stores--our whole family has had a lot of fun this year making treats and crafty gifts for everyone. I enjoyed reading this and also the other blog you linked to--in one hand I want to be that--to be willing to have my Christmas tree empty below while we've paid for chickens overseas...but in doing that, I'm not paying attention to the love language God has given me. I love to give gifts-and that includes all of the people closest to me. So I look for creative ways to give something fun--something to acknowledge I'm thinking of them. Yes, kids don't just need a lot of stuff, but what I want is for your kids to know that every birthday, I'm thinking of them even across the country--whether it's a goofy homemade card and a previously loved book, or a brand new something or other because it's a big occasion and it's nice to have something new that's your own. I want to have a happy medium here. Christmas is about so much more than just gifts under the tree. And for me, the gifts are there only because it's my way of telling each person I spent time on getting or creating something for them--to utilize Christmas as a time to show my love for them in every way I know how--which, for me, includes some gifts and goodies. Gifts of the tangible, under the tree kind as well as the intangibles--which are sometimes harder for me, but something I strive for. As for the "I" media...wow--yep, struck a cord there. In the past four months we've now gotten two iPhones, a macbook, and an iPad...and they can definitely be an I thing. Moderation is the key--we're still learning, but all of the gadgets and gizmos can be used for good as well--the photo books, videos, and fun things we've explored with the kids and helping them to learn about this techy world have been fun, too. We just have to limit the "i" time and make it a "we" time! Merry Christmas to you all--I know it will be a great event full of fun family times. A box is headed your way with creations from Clara and sweets for all the sweet tooths at your happy home. Love ya, Ashley
Yep--nothing like hearing little mouths repeat it to make you feel convicted--the tone of voice, the biting words, words thrown around that sound awful coming from the mouths of babes...and noting that also when you speak negatively about yourself it becomes a reality--I think about how I want to empower my girls to really understand beauty, and how hearing and seeing my confidence is what they need to understand that their own beauty comes from within--not about the clothes they wear or the way they look--the power of the mouth to speak reality on ones own self-image is amazing...and convicting. I hope that I speak of myself in the same light that I speak about my girls--because what I speak becomes my truth--and I want to aspire to be the woman/mother/spouse God lovingly created me to be, and the person that my children admire. As I speak it, so be it. My mouth shapes my world and it's a decision every day to make it bless everyone that hears it, including myself.
Very interesting blog, Kevin. We've butted heads over issues like education and religion in the past so I was eager to read this. The more we both grow in our thinking, the more I see the core principles we actually do agree on. As your sister, I remember Mom saying many times "practice being kind rather than being right." I think that you are right--if you have a strong opinion on something you are passionate about, share it with others. The issue is exactly what you say--that people spend more time not on sharing their passion, but on letting someone know how come THEY are WRONG if they don't do/think/act exactly the same. Maybe we shouldn't necessarily say "tolerance" is the way--but it's kindness. You can share your viewpoints, vehemently disagree, and still be kind and loving in the process. I'd say you and I have done that at certain times--although we may have thought differently, I have no problem telling you I love you and genuinely desiring to spend time with you and your family. I think that's what's important. So yes--shout it from the rooftops, be open to hear what others say, because they may be just as passionate about what they feel, so they deserve to be heard as well. And ultimately, this sharing and debating is all to help each other grow and become more solid in what they DO believe in, no matter what the topic. Share on, and I hope we all can seek to be continual learners so the things we are passionate about become even stronger to us. Thanks for sharing--great post! And yep, I love you! :-)
I love it. I think, honestly, that wisdom is not something we identify in ourselves. True wisdom comes from a teachable heart--because what is open to others is open to growth, open to love, open to knowledge. I feel that is crucial to having wisdom. This reminds me of in the movie "Evan Almighty": --between the wife and "God" (Morgan Freeman)--in it God says: "Let me ask you something. If someone prays for patience, do you think God gives them patience? Or does he give them the opportunity to be patient? If they pray for courage, does God give them courage, or does he give them opportunities to be courageous? If someone prayed for their family to be closer, you think God zaps them with warm, fuzzy feelings? Or does he give them opportunities to love each other?" I wrote a blog about this here: http://ashleyarticles.blogspot.com/2010/01/theres-no-place-like-home-theres-no.html Maybe instead of answering your prayers by giving you "wisdom," Teri, he has given you more and more opportunities to learn and grow! :-)
Toggle Commented Oct 14, 2010 on Wisdom the Hard Way at Stumbling Around in The Light
Thanks for the great blogs on this. Yes, I've been convicted of the pull-up issue. Not during potty training during the day, but night-times. Here I am with a three-and-a-half-year-old and she's wearing a pull-up at night. Her accidents are very rare, and have been ever since we did our potty training boot camp. However, it's so hard for me to just have her sleep in panties because it's a pain in the butt to deal with in the middle of the night! She sleeps in panties at naptime, but I'd slacked for night time. Well, no longer! We are on this mission and we WILL accomplish success! (I've tried before and digressed after too many sleepless nights with her and baby). I'll let you know when we have a week with no night-time accidents! A few comments on potty training and tips I did that I felt worked: 1. I agree with Teri--don't use a separate potty! First off, it's gross to clean out. Second, you then have to go through one more step to get kids moved from a little potty to the normal potty. It's SO MUCH easier to just use a potty seat and then flush it down like you normally would! 2. From the time Clara was walking, I had the potty seat around. I let her watch us go to the bathroom and let her know what fun it is (um, exaggerated a little--I don't get such a huge thrill from peeing normally). And any time she would, I sat her on the potty. Not a big deal, but I got her used to it from the get-go. By the time I decided to full-on potty train, she was so used to the potty seat that it was virtually painless--we had four days of staying home in just panties and maybe had two accidents. 3. The big thing was that when I did the training, the new deal wasn't the seat and the toilet--that was old hat--the new deal was always going in it--so we presented her with her big gift--a potty watch!! You can see all kinds here: http://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C1SKPC_enUS356US360&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=potty+watch. We set it to go off every ten, then fifteen, then 30 minutes, and it would play music. She loved it and it made the process so much easier, as well as helped me remember when we were out. Her accidents were so rare--we had an incredibly easy transition (especially when we switched her to a big girl bed and got rid of pacifiers the same week of potty training)! Now let's just pray it's as easy with little sis!
Oh yes, I completely feel you. It amazing how even going to the grocery store without kids FEELS like a date when there are no children around. Man, Nathan and I have talked about just being in the car without children is sometimes such a "wow, it's so quiet and peaceful and nice to just talk with you" moment! Last night our impromptu date night included our three 1/2 year old--special time without the baby. She was in heaven having us all to herself again, and we had a great time remembering the ease of life with only one to manage! We got to then swap kids out and have her spend the night with grandparents while we brought baby home. But yes, I tend to be over or under prepared--either the diaper bag is with me on a date, or I'm so fed up with lugging stuff, I leave everything at home (like last night, where I wanted to order a glass of wine but didn't have my wallet on me...and got carded! Ha--now that sure isn't a bad thing anymore!) I agree with you, though--I LOVE being a mommy--and as a parent, those times without children is an opportunity for us to sometimes go back to a child-like place--where we appreciate and have fun in even the most mundane places--a few moments to be carefree and really just "play" with your best friend--it's perfect!
Wow--great post, as always. It's so true, and that understanding that FAMILY comes from the core of not just you, but your husband as well...everyone else has already said what I could say, but thank you for sharing your world through these blogs--it means a lot and helps us connect across the country. I've been listening to Deb Ingino's "My Wired Style" podcasts and have really been hit with the unique personalities that each of my kids bring to the table--and their coping mechanisms when anything is wrong in the family. Great blog, and a great message that the key is the ability to understand that we are all human, and we all need some "humble pie" sometimes--it's the key ingredient sometimes in truly learning all God desires for us. It about more than just us an individual, but how we connect with every other person out there, especially our immediate family.
Toggle Commented Sep 21, 2010 on The Core at Stumbling Around in The Light
Oh yes--nothing bonds a couple like living first in cockroach-infested student houses, and then "upgrading" to a 800 sq. ft. barn apartment with 200+ brown recluses. Literally. Found the first one under my pillow... love you too!
Toggle Commented Sep 9, 2010 on Hard Day's Night at Stumbling Around in The Light
Man...if we stop and raise our hands...could the dinner miraculously appear on the table? That'd be so nice. What is it about dinner prep time that makes kids so darn needy?? :-) I'll get around to updating my blog sometime soon--finally have a free-ish weekend so maybe it'll happen!
Toggle Commented Sep 9, 2010 on Watching Mommy at Stumbling Around in The Light
I SO feel you, Teri!! Ellie has been teething for MONTHS now--and still only two teeth to show for it--her top gums can't get any whiter. And I agree with you 100%--it's those struggles that bring people together--you see it in horrible situations like disastrous events and deaths of loved ones, in sleepless nights with sick children and new babies, and even the fights that come between parents and kids of all ages, spouses figuring each other out and then figuring out how to grow together... Nathan and I dropped everything and forged on our own in Knoxville--we remember that as a really low point for each of us in some ways, but nothing could have made us cleave together more--that separation from all we knew and loved in Nashville solidified that we had each other no matter what--and it's what's made this process of parenting easier, knowing we're in it together. And we can take turns when our patience runs thin and we really DO want to throw the kids out the window!
Toggle Commented Sep 8, 2010 on Hard Day's Night at Stumbling Around in The Light
Wow--love this. I'm starting to see more of this in Clara, and it definitely is sobering at times to know that every move we make is watched. But those moments like what you've described above--that's affirmation that regardless of what you do, your kids remember the moments of love in your life--and they focus on it no matter what--and thankfully that's the confidence boost we as parents need--that they see the best of us even when sometimes we struggle to see it. It's there, and you are a hero in your children's eyes because of that blinding love you have for life, God, and for them. Pretty amazing. Thanks for sharing!
Toggle Commented Sep 8, 2010 on Watching Mommy at Stumbling Around in The Light
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Sep 7, 2010