I Don't Have Time!

There are 24 hours in a day and we all have the same amount of time to tackle the tasks of the day. What do you do with your time? Do you have enough time? I’ll share a nugget my wise father shared with me. Time is something you can’t find when you lose it...when it’s gone, it’s gone for good. I remember a mother who would relax on her front porch and patiently wait for her children to get off the school bus. Her house was always spotless clean, even her children’s rooms. She would be awarded Yard of the Month several times in the year, and dinner was always ready for her husband and even lunch when he can home. She was always able to enjoy an occasional girls night out, sometimes in the middle of the week! How did she do it? Was she a Stepford Wife or something? I can’t seem to get ahead to get my house clean the way I want it, forget KEEP it clean! Yes, dinner is usually almost ready when hubby comes home, yet if he came home for lunch, I’d probably scream because he interrupted my day. Sit on the porch and wait for my children? I pick them up from school and I’m usually rushing out the house hoping I won’t be late and they only go one day a week. My sons’ room is always junky in spite of my obviously ineffective commands to have them clean it several times a day. Yard of the Month? Yeah right;I don’t do yard work; I don’t have time! Where does the time go? Am I suffering from time management failure? Another mom I know has a daily schedule and she lives by it, another one has a To Do List that works for her. Me? Hmmm...I just take the day as it comes minute by minute. Do whatever works for you and your family, just remember we all have 24 hours in the day and we really do have enough time in the day, it’s what we do with our time that matters.

I'm Not Complaining

Many mothers choose to keep their struggles and tribulations to themselves…bottled up inside and never voicing a word of what they deal with on a daily basis. This is fine if this works for you, yet others choose to share their days with a close friend or another mother who is not so eager to judge. You may call this complaining, yet it’s a stress relief for many mothers. Just being able to vent about your day, a situation with your children, or an unlovable moment with your husband, is medicine for many moms. If you don’t have anyone to share with, be careful not to disclose your life with just anyone out of desperation. Pray for someone in your life that will have a mutual understanding of an occasional need for a listening ear and confidentiality. Pray for someone who will be willing to invest in the quality of your life and your family. This is priceless! You may not always need a solution, just an understanding ear will be appreciated. Once again, let’s not judge each other on how we choose to deal with our joys and challenges of motherhood! Encourage, edify, and uplift your fellow mother!

The Weight of the World

It never fails, whenever the family leaves the house, I’m usually the last one out. My three gentlemen are in the car wondering what is taking me so long. I often wonder why I’m the last one out also! I’m usually cutting off lights, ceiling fans, and making sure the doors are locked. Sometimes I’m trying to finish just one more task, so I won’t have to look at unfinished business when I get home. I just have to fold that last towel, wash a few more dishes or pick up shoes sitting in the hallway. Tonight my husband reminded me to make sure I always have the cell phone when WE leave the house. Okay, I can do that! I don’t understand why it has to be ME, yet I’m flattered and fortunate to have to remember these small, yet important matters for the entire family. Yeah right! It would be nice if we could work as a team. Teamwork! Teamwork! RAH! RAH! RAH! My oldest said he had a way to help me. Could this be true? Is he actually trying to help lighten my load? He said he would put a sign on the door that said CELL PHONE, so I could remember to pick it up when we leave the house. I give up...rah,rah,rah. Thank God my shoulders were made wide enough to carry the weight, yet they sure get tired sometimes!

De-Clutter My Brain

I was looking for a roll of tape this morning and each room I went into had a pile of junk either in a corner on a box, a table, a desk or the ironing board, which is in my bedroom waiting to be taken down. It’s now topped with clothes, which is an additional job I’ve created for myself. I got agitated as I went from room to room and completely forgot about the tape, yet focused on the piles that seemed to laugh at me for being intimidated by them. I wish I could twinkle my nose and remove these little piles that are causing me big pain. I know my thought process will be a lot clearer once these piles are removed. Don’t you feel better in a clean, uncluttered space? Our surroundings play a big part in our thoughts and even our emotions. A dirty house can be overwhelming to the point you don't feel like doing anything! It’s just one thing to do...tackle each pile one by one...SIGH. This could have been avoided if everyone picked up behind themselves. I’ve already removed one pile in my bedroom and my husband will be stunned once he notices it’s finally gone. I feel better about it myself and have motivation to tackle one more, but just ONE more. Maybe then, I'll find the tape!

My Gift To You

Mother’s Day is quickly approaching and wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could give the gift of acceptance to each other? This weekend I met a mother of six children, and for whatever reason she shared this information with me; she has never been married. She immediately asked me not to hold this fact against her because so many mothers do. My reaction and words to this mother could have empowered her or broken her spirit. I thought of an Old Ethiopian Proverb MW has adopted…”When spider webs unite they can tie up a lion.” My personal proverb is, “When mothers come together, we can change the world.” When we realize the collective power and influence God has planted in us as women, we can accomplish so much through our children, our husbands, our communities, our cities, etc... We can accept, encourage, and pray for one another or choose to judge and condemn (verbally or in our thoughts). Let's travel this demanding, yet gratifying journey of motherhood together. I invite you to read a word of encouragement from one of MW’s seasoned mothers at http://www.momsweb.net/v.cfm titled Accepting One Another. This is my Mother's Day gift to you and I encourage you to share this gift with another mother. Remember, "When spider webs unite, they can tie up a lion."

Be Thankful

I was sharing with another mother how I thought my Mondays would be a time for me to do some things I wanted to do. Since the boys are in school on Mondays only, I was hoping that would be a time to renew my mind and kick my feet up. It never turns out that way and I find myself running errands and doing things around the house and before you know it, the time is gone and it's time to pick the boys up from school! She mentioned how she would love to just be home alone regardless of what she had to do. She's right! Some mothers would just love to be home to clean up without being disturbed or even to use the bathroom or eat a meal without interruption. My goodness, give me an inch and I want a mile! Yes, I'm thankful just to be home alone one day a week for a few hours. It really does make a difference!

We Should Get Paid

Yesterday morning, my eight year old was being a busy bee and completing his chores. He’s always excited about viewing his list of chores each morning. I guess this is an age eight benefit because my ten year old finds no joy in his list of things to do. Well, as he removed the sofa cushions to vacuum the overflowing dust bunnies and find leftover popcorn, lost pencils, and pennies, he says to me, “Mama, we should get paid for the work we do because we do more than you.” At that moment I felt guilty as I sat on my butt typing and looking at him with the vacuum in his hand...the guilt lasted an incredibly brief moment. I forgot I was an adult speaking to a child and quickly went down the list of things I do with a frown on my face. “Do I get paid for cooking your breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Do I get paid for washing your nasty underwear? Do I get paid for anything I do around here?” I quickly snapped back into an adult/child dialogue and lowered my tone and my blood pressure and kindly said, “Sweetie, don’t ask to be rewarded for things you do. We all live here and have to help keep the house clean. God sees you and he will bless you.” I went back to my typing, yet in my mind, I continued to add to the list of things I do without pay and was dumbfounded by his audacity to make such a crazy comment. He was only verbally expressing what I sometimes think. I guess I should take a dose of my own medicine huh?

Happy Helpmates

I often think of the term HELPMATE. Hmmm...God made woman to be man’s helpmate and I refuse to believe this help is all about cooking my husband’s meals and washing his clothes. Yes, he needs help in those areas also, yet I’m reminded just how important offering encouraging words, uplifting my husband’s spirit, and helping him to realize his potential is help also. I stay home while my husband goes out in the work force. Although my job is just as important in the home, he is the official breadwinner. It’s on his shoulders to provide for the family and keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. Sending him off in love and allowing him to return to a peaceful home, helps him in ways I’ll never fully understand. When we were both working outside the home, my famous phrase was, “I work too!” I wasn’t overly concerned with helping him because I could barely help myself! My words can sometimes cut into the deepest wound and when I realized I was killing my husband’s spirit with the ugly things that come out of my mouth, I was no longer a help to him, yet a hindrance to his strength and growth as a man. God specifically placed me in his life to help him, so when he does something that irritates or frustrates me, I must remember my words can either build him up or tear him down. It’s all about humility. Can I put my needs aside long enough to see and meet the needs of my husband? I ensure my children’s needs are met without missing a beat! Today, I will begin AGAIN, to do my best to be a happy helpmate.

Teaching Sons to Sew

Preparing chores for my sons on a daily basis is more to help them than to help me. My father told me a long time ago that there should be no difference in raising boys and girls. I had to think about it for a while, and there is a lot of truth in his statement. Why should girls be taught to cook, sew, and wash clothes and dishes and not boys? Although I don’t have girls, I remind myself that I’m raising some little girl’s future husband! I want my future daughter in laws to thank me, not curse me (smile). I’m so grateful for my mother-in-law teaching my husband how to keep house including other domestic tasks such as sewing! Having a husband that can sew his own buttons, wash and iron his clothes, and cook his own meal from time to time sure helps out a lot! I enjoy doing these things for my husband, yet he knows how to do them for himself and doesn’t have to wait on me to do them although he’d PREFER me to do them. Academics aren’t the only lessons being taught in this home schooling family, housekeeping lessons are included also. As I write this, I believe I’ll get the boys their own clothesbasket and let them begin washing their own clothes! Why haven’t I done this before? Now when they ask me if their favorite shirt or pair of shorts is clean, I can say, “I don’t know, is it?”

Funeral Service

Funeral services were held for Last Chance, pet fish of Jaylan Williams, Tuesday April 18, 2006 at 7:40 a.m. Last Chance was won at a recent carnival at Jaylan’s last chance to get one of eight balls into a bowl of colored water. The eighth ball brought the fish home with the name Last Chance. Funeral services were attended by Jaylan Williams, his brother Javan, and mother, LaVender, in the backyard of the home where Last Chance resided for three days. The funeral procession was led by Javan, as he carried a big shovel to bury and lay the remains of Last Chance. A very small flower arrangement and a seashell, which Last Chance loved to hide in, served as the tombstone. Sadness and many tears ended the service and the boys are moving on with their lives. Services were planned and coordinated by Jaylan and Javan. To help the grieving process, the mother of the boys encouraged them to write a story in honor of Last Chance and the short life he lived. Never have they ever been so eager for an English/Grammar Lesson! There’s a lesson in everything.

Rest or Wash

Right after having a battle with fatigue yesterday, I'm facing a new day with new challenges. My children are in school, I have loads of laundry to wash, and breakfast dishes are in the sink waiting to feel water. What do I do? Rest or Wash? Believe it or not, this decision is somewhat difficult for me. How do I rest when there is work to do? When will I do it? Will I have time after my rest to make my house nice and neat before the family comes home? What if my husband comes home early and finds me sleeping in the middle of the day! Will he think I do this everyday? Who cares! Just the questions alone are making me tired. I HAVE to learn to care for myself properly. I have poor eating habits, poor sleeping habits, and I keep going and going and going. As of right now, the Energize bunny and the Easter bunny have been laid down to rest...I'm tired and I'm going to put my feet up!

Get Up!

Sunday morning, when I was just about finished getting everyone else ready for church, a state of confusion covered my brain. I couldn't think straight and my mind was in a place I had never experienced before...deep disorder. I couldn't think to get myself ready for church. I didn't know what to pick up first or what direction to walk in, so I sat on my bed thinking I just needed a moment to exhale. I moved from the bed to the floor and began to cry. I couldn't understand what was going on with me and my husband didn't know how to help me. These emotions hit me like a football tackle from behind...I didn't see it coming. I was not physically, mentally, or spiritually able to get up and shake off whatever this heaviness was that ushered me to a pit of despair. After sitting there for a long while, the phone rang and on the other end was the voice of a seasoned woman from my church that had never called me before. I was able to pull myself together enough to communicate and she began to share the awesome power of God and the strength I had in Jesus. She talked to me as if I were her daughter and she reminded me of the consequences of pouring into everyone else and not caring for myself. I know, I know, I preach this daily, yet I need to be ministered to also! She explained how my body shut down, which included my ability to make decisions and function properly! I was a victim of fatigue and the S on my shirt (Superwoman) fell off. She ended the conversation saying, “Get up! Get up!” After several get ups, I was standing on my feet and filled with nothing BUT the power of the Lord. My family was able to make church school and the second worship service; we appeared as if we didn’t miss a beat. The sermon title was Still I Rise. Hmmm...need I say more? I thought of how many women experience these dreadful moments or silently snap and never ask for help. What about the mothers who don't have a relationship with a risen Savior to help bring them through? I've learned my lesson and I thank God he restored my strength, energy, and power. It was scary for me, yet God showed His power like I've never seen it before. Be encouraged and most of all...encourage others!
II Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
....”My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness…”

I'm Free!!

I'm sooo happy I'm free from hiding my frustrations and inadequacies as a wife and mother. What a weight to carry pretending every day is a good day and that we have the perfect children and husband. I'm not saying we have to open our front door each morning crying for help while others examine our dirty dishes and piles of laundry, but be honest with yourself! Be real! As women, we all deal with similar struggles and challenges on different levels, yet the things we share are usually the good things. We all, at some time or another, feel overwhelmed with all we are called to do and be. We all deal with laundry, dishes, cooking, bathrooms, careers, church ministry, volunteer work, hormones, children and husbands, so what's the secret? I love my home to have a sweet scent of vanilla and lavender when my family and guests enter, yet take a look at the dust under the potpourri pot! The truth shall set you free!

Wacky Weekends

It’s Friday and many of us can say TGIF! Working mothers and mothers working within the home look forward to sleeping in an extra hour or two, dressing down, and a much needed respite from a hectic weekly routine. On the other hand, weekends also hold a schedule full of extracurricular activities, birthday parties, sporting events, and visits from friends and family. Some mothers are so busy during the week, they look forward to family activities to reconnect with one another. Whew! Just when you thought you’d get your much-deserved day of rest, you’re waiting to exhale and wondering when your second wind will come. As I write this, I realize it isn’t Friday after all; it’s Thursday! Hmmm...does this say anything about me? Whatever level of activity is entertained in your home, on weekdays and weekends, don’t forget to take a day or a few hours for yourself to replenish your energy, rest your body, and renew your mind. Workaholics accomplish one thing...stress! Even Jesus rested!
Exodus 34:21 (NASB)
“You shall work six days, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during plowing time and harvest you shall rest.”

My Power Source

Okay, you’ve showered, dressed, your make-up is applied, you’ve had your coke or coffee, and you’re ready to tackle the dealings of the new day, right? You know something is bound to happen that will knock your plans out of order, cause you to become agitated, or have negative thoughts. No day goes as planned, and none of us are perfect, so how can we set ourselves up for a victorious day instead of a day of frustration and defeat? Plug into your power source! Do you know what your power source is? If I woke up and started my day without prayer and meditation, I would be Mrs. Evileena! My power source is Jesus...yes, He is the source of my joy, my strength, and energy. I have to ask for His covering over my mind and my thoughts. Being a stay at home mom is not easy. I don’t care what anyone says or what it appears to be, it is a challenge! I enjoy it to the fullest and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, yet there are days that I struggle with a bad attitude, hormone hangover, or days I just wake up tired. This is not how I desire to be nor do I want my children to experience monster momma, so I ask the Lord to cover me, hide me from myself, and fill me with His love, thoughts, compassion, understanding, and peace. I want my children to see the character of Christ, not Evileena (smile). It makes a major difference in my demeanor and in my day. Plugging into my power source covers me with the Promised Perfect Peace allowing me to handle whatever comes my way. Have you plugged into your power source today?

No Pain-No Gain

We all desire a happy family life and marriage, and most of us strive to be the best wife and mother God called us to be. The truth is, we must go through some bad times to get to the good times. We must have a little rain in our home to truly appreciate the sunshine. We learn very little about life and relationships in good times. No pain...no gain. The valuable life lessons come in the midst of our tears, our pain, and the unfavorable conditions we face from day to day. These growing pains, which don’t feel good at all, and seemingly last a lifetime, bring lifetime lessons of character and GROWTH. These character traits are exactly what we need to make us stronger, tougher, enduring wives and mothers. Whatever you are facing today is just a small lesson in your life and although you may be looking forward to the completion of this lesson, there is another one on the way! Who do you know that received a degree in a week? We’ll go back to college and take continuing education classes until we reach our individual goals knowing we are tired of homework, studying, and taking tests, yet when it comes to the test of life...we want immediate advancement to the next level. You weren’t born a woman, you develop into a woman and this is a process...a loooong process. You also have the choice to develop into a Godly woman (yes, there is a difference), which calls for a few more life lessons, a little more pain and definitely more tears, yet the degree of joy and peace you'll receive is priceless...buckle up and enjoy the journey!

Tender Mercy

My first-born has been on punishment all weekend for play station abuse. He was on lock-down from everything that gave him pleasure except eating. He did pretty well dealing with the punishment and keeping himself busy. Lots of forced reading and crafts on his own. Last night he was excited about coming off his punishment and right before his shower, he asked, "Mama, can I have a warm towel? If you don't feel like it, that's okay." The fact that he showed me a little mercy and a way out, was a blessing to me. He knew I was tired and trying to watch the last few minutes of The Next Food Network Star Challenge. Now, you're probably wondering what the deal is with the warm towel. Every now and then on cool nights, I like to give my boys a warm towel right from the dryer as they exit the shower. I can't take credit for this compassionate idea, my younger sister shared this with me a few years ago and who wouldn't enjoy such an act of comfort? As I thought about an answer to give my son suffering his last hours of punishment, the popular hymn, Great Is Thy Faithfulness came to my mind. "Great is thy faithfulness! Great is thy faithfulness!" Morning by morning new mercies I see; All I have needed Thy hand hath provided, "Great is thy faithfulness", Lord unto me! The hymn reminded me of all the tender mercies the Lord shows me each day and how some of them are so small, they are often overlooked. Needless to say, my son received his warm towel. With a priceless smile on his face, he said, "Thank you, Mama!" My reply to him was, "You're welcome; thank God for mercy!"

Psalm 145:9 (KJV)
The Lord is good to all; and his tender mercies are over all his works.


I woke up this morning at 4 a.m. and saw light coming from my sons’ bedroom. They never shut the door completely because they want privacy, yet they are two of the scariest boys on Earth. My oldest(ten years old) had a friend sleep over last night and I instructed them to turn the PlayStation 2 off at midnight, which I witnessed. Sometime through the night, if he went to sleep at all, my ten year old turned the ps2 on again and I caught him with the control in his hand having an intense playing moment. When he noticed I was standing there, he just looked at me from under the cover with nothing but his head and arms showing, probably thinking of a good story to explain why he had the control in his hands. I would have believed he fell asleep with it in his hands, yet since his eyes looked as if he just saw the boogie-man, he was out of luck. I always knew he was addicted, yet not to this extreme. I thank God I recognize his addiction because I don’t want to be harsh on something he obviously can’t control. My husband and I purchased the ps2 and it is something he truly enjoys better than eating and sleeping! This is the computer/video age and we could have simply kept him the dark, yet we chose not to. This is my opportunity to communicate with him on another level and find some other things he is interested in that I may not be aware of. Surely, something else is out there he’d like to give some of his time to. I know he enjoys drawing, reading, puzzles, and building things, yet nothing has been able to compete with the lights, colors, and sounds from the ps2 games...graphics at its finest! Baseball takes up a lot of his time, so maybe that’s why he was up at 4 a.m. That’s it! He never has time to play! No, no, no, I’m beginning to rationalize. My son is addicted to video games and it MUST be addressed. If you’ve recognized you have a video game addict, please share!

Servant Leader - Servant Mother

There has been a white plastic bag on the floor in front of my back door for two days. There has also been a single battery on the floor in front of the fireplace for almost a week…okay; it’s been a week today (smile). My favorite saying to my family is, “Who is supposed to pick this up? Me?” Sometimes I let things sit just to see if anyone else will pick them up. I know, I know…don’t hold my breath huh? It’s funny how items are supposed to automatically disappear and return to their place of origin without the hands of man. I use to take offense to my family assuming that I would do what they didn't want to do until the Lord had to repeat lesson 101 in Motherhood…If King Jesus humbled himself to be a servant, why can’t I? He always has to go there doesn’t He? As I pick up dirty clothes, shoes, toys, and so many other things that don’t belong to me, the Holy Spirit is quick to remind me of my position in the home. In order to stand in this most influential and high position he gave mothers, we must first decrease, so He can increase! It’s all in the attitude and I have LOTS of that. I’m not saying we aren’t supposed to train our children to be good stewards of what God has given them and also teach them to clean, yet a sincere attitude of humility helps us forget about the trivial act of picking up behind others, and concentrate on bringing God glory through our actions and attitudes of keeping the home He has entrusted in our care. Okay, I’ll pick the plastic bag and battery up today (smile). God blesses obedience!
Matthew 23:11 (TLB)
The more lowly your service to others, the greater you are. To be the greatest, be a servant.

Single Moms Stand Supreme!

Eight o’clock in the evening is usually when I begin looking for my second wind after a day full of activity and events. I’m usually physically and mentally exhausted, and getting the boys ready for bed is a job in itself. Let’s face it, very few children have a strong desire to take a bath and go to bed on time, so it turns into a power struggle between parent and child or maybe even a fight for some households. I have one son that doesn't want to get in the shower and one I have to pull out of the shower. I have often gone to bed before them and left the nighttime regime to my husband, yet single moms don’t have this pleasure. They must continue with their role with absolutely no help except maybe from an older child. Just the thought of what a single mother goes through makes me appreciate them much more. Having someone to take care of maintenance of our vehicles, yard work, house repairs, and financially provide for the family are responsibilities easily taken for granted until a parent is subtracted from the equation. Military spouses may experience the single parent syndrome, yet it’s temporary, whereas a single mother lives this each day with no respite in site. Let's reach out to our single mothers and offer them the support they need. An offer to baby-sit, an unexpected dessert for the children, help with yard work, or even collecting coupons for them would all be well received. For all the single mothers reading this, you stand supreme in my book! Be strong and be encouraged!

I Feel Lousy!

I woke up this morning feeling aches in every muscle and I recognized every sign of my 42 years of age. I realized not only had I not taken my vitamins or exercised in a few days, I also had ice cream and cake before I went to bed after 10 p.m. last night. I’m convinced I feel better and have a more stable state of mind when I care for my body properly. Yes, I know my family needs me and depends on me. Yes, I realize I can’t take care of them unless I take care of myself first, yet it’s so easy to pop something sweet in my mouth first thing in the morning or late in the evening and I know it will only drag me down. So why do I do it? Because it was there and I promise you I hear sweet treats calling my name! Routine choices create habits and we are showing our children the importance of or lack of physical exercise, healthy eating habits, and optimum health by what we do...children live what they learn. Very few people love to exercise and we all have an excuse...I’m tired, I work hard, I don’t have time, I have a bad knee, my back hurts, I can’t exercise at home, the list goes on. Even if we run in place or do floor exercises while watching television, take our children for a walk in the park, walk on our lunch break, or go for an evening stroll as a family, we should do something! Our state of mind will improve and we’ll have more energy. Are you feeling lousy, not happy with yourself, or just feeling down in the dumps lately? Take one step at a time, one day at a time. We must do our part, so God can do His part! It’s never to late to begin and I encourage you to join me TODAY as I pray for the desire to develop good health habits for living a physical and spiritual life that brings God glory. No, it won’t be easy, yet with a little persistence and perseverance topped with God’s power, we can do it!
Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

A Minute Alone

Although my sons are homeschooled, they attend school once a week. I would not be honest if I said I love being with my children 24 hours a day 7 days a week...sometimes I need just a minute to myself and I usually get it on Mondays when they attend school. I do have plenty to keep me busy today with grocery shopping, laundry, and other small jobs around the house, yet I’ll be able to hear myself breath and I won’t have anyone’s shadow except my own. Yippee! I pick my boys up at 3 p.m. and I always look so forward to seeing their faces and finding out how their day went. I want to know everything they did and who they interacted with. Yes, I have a million questions for them (smile). Sometimes just a minute alone makes us a better wife and a better mother. Have you had your minute today?