Friday, January 3, 2014

Excellent Womanhood


Like many Christian women, I have a love/hate relationship with the Proverbs 31 Woman. I mean, we already have the impossible-to-live-up-to example of Jesus. However, with Jesus, we can at least humor ourselves when we fail to live up to His example…..because He IS God! But with this Proverbs 31 chick? Well, she was completely HUMAN! And while, as far as we know, she was just made up as an example of an ideal woman by Lemuel’s mother, I don’t think she would be there as an example IF it were impossible to reach those heights. Also—if you really think about it—isn’t her life an example of living the abundant life that Jesus spoke about. She has a FULL life! Living that full life—with a reverent fear of God—leads to her being called blessed. Not exhausted. Not a martyr. Not a second-class human. BLESSED! I don’t know about you, but I want to be looked at as someone who leads a blessed, abundant life. Plus, as an adopted daughter of the heavenly Father, it is my birthright. It is about time I start living like it!

So prayerfully, I have chosen as my Theme of the Year:

Excellent Womanhood

While the Proverbs 31 Woman is an example of excellent womanhood, let’s not forget that she is only ONE example from the bible. We also have Queen Esther, Abigail, Sarah (with both examples of what-to-do and what-NOT-to do), Ruth, and many others.

Still, I am starting from Proverbs 31 verse 15 (from the Amplified Bible)…..

She rises while it is yet night and gets [spiritual] food for her household and assigns her maids their tasks. [Job 23:12.]

How am I applying this in practical terms? For me it will ideally begin in the evening planning for the following day. For now, trying to keep the Proverbs 31 Woman and the teachings of Titus 2 in mind, I am writing down that plan in my Day Timer. The first thing scheduled is Quiet Time: time to read my bible, pray, and journal. I need to fill up on spiritual food to better tackle whatever the day brings.

schedule quiet time

And while the P31 Woman understood the importance of spiritual food, she did not neglect her family’s need for food food. So I also include the Meal Plan and an estimated time to start the cooking process in order to serve supper on time.

Planning day

The P31 Woman was physically strong. In our modern world, I do not exert myself as physically as she did do accomplish my daily tasks. My servants—the washing machine, dishwasher, stand mixer, and others—do much of the hard work. Therefore, I have to EXERCISE. If I don’t schedule it, and continuously tell myself all of its benefits, it doesn’t happen.

Obviously, the P31 Woman takes care of her home. So I add my homekeeping tasks to the schedule. In the future, I will give more details of my Homekeeping Schedule. For now, here is a quick summary of the current schedule:

  • Daily: basic maintenance, such as dishes, laundry (I HAVE to do some each day or it is soon a chaotic mess), tidying, etc.
  • Monday: Bathroom and Living Room
  • Tuesday: Errands* and Special Projects
  • Wednesday: Kitchen
  • Thursday: Office and Weekly Planning (menus, shopping lists, etc.)
  • Friday: Bedroom and Ironing

*This is my preferred shopping day, as it is usually much less crowded. However, the reality is that with this crazy winter weather in Upstate NY (remember…I am a southern girl, who HATES being cold!!!), I schedule my errands around the weather. So Errand Day can be—and often is—switched with any other day.

I think this takes care of the “bare bones” of my schedule. So I will leave it there for now. Later, I will tell you about the “life enhancers”.

Until next time,


*Photos that are not my own are linked to the source. Just click on them.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Happy New Year and Word of the Year


Happy New Year! I hope each and every one of you had a wonderful holiday season. For me, the season is a blur. Wasn’t I just buying my Thanksgiving bird YESTERDAY? How is it possible that it really is time to store away all my Christmas d├ęcor for another year? Even in the midst of the holiday season, I realized that time was moving at warp speed. I believe part of the reason is that my youngest child is now eighteen. He is a senior in high school, attempting to plan out his future while cramming as much as possible into NOW. Which means less and less time at home. I get it. I really do. After all, it is what we parents do. We train our children to leave us. But knowing that doesn’t make the process any easier. My husband and I are definitely in a time of transition into a new season of life. But I digress…

I have been reflecting on life; like many do this time of year. I gave up listing off resolutions several years ago. I now assign themes to the year. The “working title” for 2014’s theme is Excellent Womanhood. We will come back to that on another day.

This year, I have also decided to add a Word of the Year. Often a Word of the Year and a Theme of the Year are/can be the same thing. You only need one or the other. As I worked on my theme, a word kept popping into my head. One that I knew I needed to pay attention to. One that I need to practice. However, in and of itself, it didn’t make the cut for the Theme of the Year. It is, however, the PERFECT complement to ANY theme. Ready? My Word of the Year is……



… in being present in the moment. I don’t know about you, but I live WAY too much of my life on autopilot. I pull into the driveway, yet cannot remember the trip home. I look down at an empty plate and barely have a memory of tasting the food. My mind starts wandering—did I check the mail? turn off the oven? when can I run that errand—when I should be listening to what Man is saying to me NOW.

If we are not living in the PRESENT—if we are busy regretting the past or micro-managing the future—all our days will soon become one travelling at warp speed BLUR. And if you have visited here semi-recently, you know that I have decided that I need to actively PURSUE joy. And just let me take a moment to say that a lot has happened since that post that is NOT conducive to joy….

Okay…where was I? Oh, yes, pursuing joy. I am hoping that making a conscience effort to live in the present will also help me to be more joyful.

So…turn off the television, stop the endless multi-tasking and join me in the present. Who’s with me?

Do you have any resolutions? A Theme and/or Word of the Year? Share them in the comments….include a link if you’ve written about them on your blog.

And since EVERY blog post should have at least one photo….here is the scene outside my door….courtesy of Hercules.

January 2 2014

You can click on the photo to enlarge it.

Until next time….



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