Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Reason

I've been watching lots of Christmas movies lately. They are full of fun, cheer, and good feelings. In one of the movies, a man is talking to a group of people. He wants to get them past the commercialism and stress to the true reason for Christmas- being together with family and loved ones.

I did a mental double-take when he said that. The true reason for Christmas is what? Yes, family is important and Christmas can be a great time to reunite with your loved ones, but that's not the reason behind Christmas.

The reason for Christmas is to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Regardless of it not being his actual birthday or anything else, Jesus Christ is the true center of Christmas. Why? Because of who he is, and what he would do with his life.

Here are some messages from Jesus:


Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Dream Big

The law of attraction, the power of positive thinking, karma, fate, kismet, divine intervention, good feng shui, destiny, serendipity, attitude of gratitude, seeing the cup half full, self-fulfilling prophecy, or just plain old good luck. Whatever you want to call it, there's a power in thinking good things that makes you have a good life.

It is possible to change your attitude, though it usually isn't easy. It takes a knock down to your pride and a lot of humble pie to stop being angry, mad, sad, revengeful, or unhappy. There are definitely situations in life that make you feel all these emotions, and it's not bad to experience them. It's healthy to go through stages of grieving. It's healthy to not bottle up your emotions, but to experience them and let the bad ones go. It's unhealthy to always live surrounded by these bad feelings.

Honestly, it isn't fun to be mad or sad or angry. It can be full of passion (any powerful or compelling emotion or feeling, such as love or hate*) which some people take to consider as full of life and purpose. But bad passions or bad powerful feelings are not good reasons to live.

Everyone goes through hard experiences that can leave you bitter, resentful, and depressed. But you have to, you need to experience the emotion and then let the bad feelings go. Leave a space for good feelings then work to put good and light into your life.

Take time out of your day to be alone in your thoughts and feel good things, like appreciation for family, friends, good memories, possessions, jobs, money, food, shelter, clothing, little luxuries, health, abilities, and talents. Take time out of your day to dream about what you want in life, the ultimate life plan for you- your house, car, family, friends, job, vacations, possessions, etc... Doing this helps you refocus on what you do have and what you really want out of life. 

Some would say that you would then attract these items in your life. Others would say that by focusing intently on them for a while, that they then stay in your mind and you subconsciously work towards those dreams until you achieve them. There are religious people who would say that by being thankful for and taking good care of what you have, you become a steward over more blessings. There are groups of people who would say that you are just plain lucky if you get things you dream about.

Focus on good, work through and avoid the bad. Attract good to your self and Dream Big and let yourself live the dream by making it a reality.

When you cry be sure to dry your eyes
'Cause better days are sure to come
And when you smile be sure to smile wide
Don't let them know that they have won
And when you walk, walk with pride
Don't show the hurt inside
Because the pain will soon be gone

And when you dream, dream big
As big as the ocean blue
'Cause when you dream it might come true
When you dream, dream big

When you laugh be sure to laugh out loud
'Cause it will carry all your cares away
And when you see, see the beauty all around and in yourself
And it'll help you feel okay
And when you pray, pray for strength
To help you carry on
When the troubles come your way

And when you dream, dream big
As big as the ocean blue
'Cause when you dream it might come true
When you dream, dream big


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Thank You, Mom and Dad

I've always appreciated my parents and loved them. They are great parents to me and have always taken good care of me and loved me a lot growing up.

Then I got married and had kids of my own, and I appreciate my parents on a whole new level. I never realized just quite all the sacrifice and worry and love they willingly pour over me and my siblings.

I read an ARTICLE that points out some of the things I didn't realize until I became a parent. Here are the 10 points it brings up:

"1. You made her cry... a lot. She cried when she found out she was pregnant. She cried as she gave birth to you. She cried when she first held you. She cried with happiness. She cried with fear. She cried with worry. She cried because she feels so deeply for you. She felt your pain and your happiness and she shared it with you, whether you realized it or not.
2. She wanted that last piece of pie. But when she saw you look at it with those big eyes and lick your mouth with that tiny tongue, she couldn't eat it. She knew it would make her much happier to see your little tummy be filled than hers.
3. It hurt. When you pulled her hair, it hurt; when you grabbed her with those sharp fingernails that were impossible to cut, it hurt; when you bit her while drinking milk, that hurt, too. You bruised her ribs when you kicked her from her belly; you stretched her stomach out for nine months; you made her body contract in agonizing pain as you entered this world.
4. She was always afraid. From the moment you were conceived, she did all in her power to protect you. She became your mama bear. She was that lady who wanted to say no when the little girl next door asked to hold you, and who cringed when she did, because in her mind no one could keep you as safe as she herself could. Her heart skipped two beats with your first steps. She stayed up late to make sure you got home safe, and woke up early to see you off to school. With every stubbed toe and little stumble, she was close by; she was ready to snatch you up with every bad dream or late night fever. She was there to make sure you were OK.
5. She knows she's not perfect. She is her own worst critic. She knows all her flaws and sometimes hates herself for them. She is hardest on herself when it comes to you, though. She wanted to be the perfect mom, to do nothing wrong -- but because she is human, she made mistakes. She is probably still trying to forgive herself for them. She wishes with her whole heart that she could go back in time and do things differently, but she can't, so be kind to her, and know she did the best she knew how to do.
6. She watched you as you slept. There were nights when she was up 'til 3:00 a.m. praying that you would finally fall asleep. She could hardly keep her eyes open as she sang to you, and she would beg you to "please, please fall asleep." Then, when you finally fell asleep, she would lay you down and all her tiredness would disappear for a short second as she sat by your bedside looking down at your perfect cherub face, experiencing more love than she knew was possible, despite her worn-out arms and aching eyes.
7. She carried you a lot longer than nine months. You needed her to. So she did. She would learn to hold you while she cleaned; she would learn to hold you while she ate; she would even hold you while she slept, because it was the only way she could sometimes. Her arms would get tired, her back would hurt, but she held you still because you wanted to be close to her. She snuggled you, loved you, kissed you and played with you. You felt safe in her arms; you were happy in her arms; you knew you were loved in her arms, so she held you, as often and as long as you needed.
8. It broke her heart every time you cried. There was no sound as sad as your cries, or sight as horrible as the tears streaming down your perfect face. She did all in her power to stop you from crying, and when she couldn't stop your tears, her heart would shatter into a million little pieces.
9. She put you first. She went without food, without showers and without sleep. She always put your needs before her own. She would spend all day meeting your needs, and by the end of the day, she would have no energy left for herself. But the next day, she would wake up and do it all over again, because you meant that much to her.
10. She would do it all again. Being a mom is one of the hardest jobs anyone can do, and it will take you to your very limits sometimes. You cry, you hurt, you try, you fail, you work and you learn. But, you also experience more joy that you thought was possible and feel more love than your heart can contain. Despite all the pain, grief, late nights and early mornings you put your mom through, she would do it all again for you because you are worth it to her. So, next time you see her, tell your mom thank you; let her know that you love her. She can never hear it too many times."

I think this applies to dads too. A lot of times dads are left out because they are gone from the home working to provide for the family more often than moms. I know my husband feels every bit as much a father as I do a mother to our children, and they love him every bit as much.

Parenting doesn't end when the kids leave the house, it's a lifetime labor of love.