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Posts Tagged ‘notebook’

orange_flower

So why did I say I was going to blog for 40 days in a row? Today is day 36, I think. My brain is empty (or emptier, depending on your point of view). Anything I think of sounds like drivel. I was proud of a couple of posts. I cringed a few times on others when hitting the “publish” tab. But I enjoy writing. I enjoy putting thoughts on paper (um…computer). But the pressure of having to put those thoughts in writing has gotten to me today. I got nothing.

Most who know me well understand that I’m a talker. I’ve never had a problem stating an opinion, discussing an issue or yucking it up over humorous situations. I think a few of you wonder why I’m blogging at all. Good question. Because I can. You can too, if you want to. The technology of having a blog site makes it pretty simple. No one has to be very tech-savvy to handle a wordpress blog.

So today I’ve got nothing to say. At least nothing to say to you. Except…why don’t you try it? Why don’t you open a word document and type away. Or my personal favorite – grab one of those old Mead composition notebooks with the wide ruled pages and start creating. Journal what you’ve done today. Draw a picture. Doodle a flower or two. Use some pretty colored markers and write out your favorite Scripture.

Now that I think about it – I believe I’ve already blogged about the cathartic qualities of writing. See – now I’m repeating myself. Time to blog off. Maybe I’ll get some inspiration in the middle of the night.

If you want to read some very good stuff, check out my son’s blog posts recently. His latest creative writing endeavor is a 12-part series that I’m very proud of. But I’m his mom – I’m allowed.

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Journaling

I don’t remember a time that I didn’t like writing. In first grade I loved writing my whole name across the top of my paper: Kristine Gail McCullough. I loved that my name was long so I had to use all the space across from left to right to fit it all in. And I had the best letters! More capital letters than anyone else in my class. Then my teacher told me I didn’t need to write the whole thing. It was taking too long and my hand was cramping by the end of the day. I think I was grasping those big fat pencils too tightly.

So I shortened my name to “Kris” (but I still have an awesome amount of capital letters thanks to marrying my own Mr. McGarvey). But my love of writing continues.My 40-day Lenten addition today is putting words on paper, everyday, in some form. I have a lovely old-style composition book (see picture above – don’t you just love a brand new notebook!) and the desire to write, whatever comes into my head.

Today I wrote some Scripture and took off on the theme of fearing the Lord. But tomorrow may be a recipe, or a prayer, or a story, or a memory. The important thing for me is the discipline of putting thoughts on lined paper. It’s a lost art, really. We think spewing stuff in that “What’s On Your Mind?” box at the top of our Facebook newsfeed is sufficient. Most of the time I write something there in response to someone else’s spewing and if I’m wise, I delete it before posting. The beauty of my little comp book is the privacy I have to say whatever I want, because only my eyes will ever see it. Oh yes – God will see it too. But I’m not afraid to be angry, or defiant, or sad…God isn’t afraid of my thoughts. Be honest – He knows us better than we know ourselves. And maybe, just maybe, He has a few words for me to write down as well.

So get yourself a brand, spanking new notebook and start writing…right now!

 

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dirty socks

I am a blessed woman. I know it. I’m a “there’s always a silver-lining” kind of person. Makes my kids crazy sometimes. I’ve always said things are never as bad as they seem. But there are still times when I’m overwhelmed, when I can’t see anything except the chaos around me. And I let myself get sad. I start thinking “poor me.” I begin to believe the lies – you know the ones…”I’m alone, I’m going to fail, I’m not good enough, I can’t do it.” In this case – I – is the operative word. I’ve become self-absorbed.

It’s in those moments when I desperately need to look outside of myself. When I feel the pull to look inward, I fight it…with everything I have. I go to my “Gratitude Fix.”

Ann Voskamp calls them gifts. In her book entitled “One Thousand Gifts,” she challenged me to live fully right where I am. I read the book a few years ago and took her up on her 1000 gift dare. I opened a brand new, clean notebook, ready to fill it with beautiful expressions of my heart’s cry of gratitude. I decided to come up with 10 to 20 new entries each day. It started out pretty easy. I could think of a lot of things I was thankful for…air to breathe, a house to live in, a husband who loves me, clean water to drink. But after the first fifty or so, it started getting a little tougher. That’s when I began to look at the smallest of items as blessings, as gifts, in my life.

My notebook began to fill up. A thousand gifts takes a while to compile. I began to really look for things to be thankful for. My senses became more attune to the blessings all around me. My eyes got sharper. I saw my mundane life in a new way. I viewed circumstances in a different light. I heard smaller sounds. I tasted more clearly, felt more deeply, inhaled new aromas.

Thank You, Lord, for the dirty socks left in the living room (which means my kids have enjoyed their day and have feet to wear socks on).
Thank You for garbage to haul outside (meaning I have more than enough food to eat)
Thanks for toilets to clean (Thank You God for Indoor Plumbing!)
Thank You for that first daffodil in the spring and the sounds of cardinals in the trees.
Thanks for bunnies who race with me down the trail in the wee hours of the day.
Thank You for the aromas of lilacs, and baking bread, and burning leaves, and freshly-laundered sheets.
Thank You for the taste of peppermint or that first pungent sip of freshly-roasted coffee.

You should try it sometime. If a list of one thousand seems overwhelming, do half of that or a quarter. The point is to look beyond the obvious and see the hidden hand of God. You are blessed. Now it’s time to realize it.

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