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It was time for the kids’ dental checkup and cleaning. We sat in the crowded waiting room- daughter at my side, son on my lap.
Because I have gotten through a few books from my list to read this year and am currently on my next book, Hands Free Mama by Rachel Macy Stafford, I was encouraged and determined not to take out my phone to check my texts, Facebook, or Instagram feeds.
Instead, we just sat there. Me with my daughter at my side and son on my lap.
But then it dawned on me. I might as well just pull out my phone. I’m not interacting with my children at all! The only difference between me and every other parent in this room is that I don’t have my phone in hand.
Our first influence as believers should always be God’s Word, the Bible, but he also has given others wisdom to share with us- not inspired wisdom, but useful wisdom. Because of the books I have chosen to read this year, my thoughts and actions have lined up more towards being purposeful. I have gathered fantastic ideas that I keep in my mommy-mental arsenal that I can reach for at a moment’s notice.
“I spy something red,” I said.
Both kids went from a slightly slumped position to sitting at attention, giving the room an instant visual scan.
“Is it on the wall?”
“Yes,” I answered, fixing my eyes on the beach ball painted in the center of the beach mural on the accent wall.
For 30 minutes, we played “I Spy.” We laughed that we had looked past the green sign that had been spied on the glass door to the green walls beyond, groaned at not being able to see the obvious orange piece of paper on the floor, and called a “give up” when we thought we named everything in a given color.
If you are looking for a book or two to help you be a more purposeful mom, here are some of my personal recommendations.
I have been able to relate to every word Rachel has written, and I am finding myself laying my phone down for longer periods of time. In this world of technology we live in, it is important for us to be reminded of the value of the real over the virtual.
On of the best things about Rachel is her ability to make her time with her two daughters meaningful while being a full-time working wife and mother.
Hands Free Life: Nine Habits for Overcoming Distraction, Living Better, and Loving More by Rachel Macy Stafford.
The sequel to Hands Free Mama, is next on my list. Since I was given a bookstore gift card for Christmas, I knew this had to be added to my “Must Read List” this year.
Rachel also has a brand new book out, Only Love Today, which I cannot wait to get my hands on.
This book really moved me in a way that many books haven’t. When you find yourself always being pulled in different directions, it can be hard to be present in anything you do. Shauna is very real about her own personal situation and how pulled and frazzled she felt, and what she needed to do in order to be present with her family instead of saying “yes” to every opportunity that came her way.
Chasing Slow: Courage to Journey Off the Beaten Path by Erin Loechner.
Our time is always being taken away from us. Whether we work outside of the home or we are stay-at-home-moms, everyone wants to get their hands on any little bit of spare time we have. We feel like we are always on the go and there is never any time for us to just stop, slow down, and put our feet up. After hearing Erin Loechner speak about her book on a podcast, I knew I needed to add this book to my “Must Read List.”
Erin wrote this book, not as someone who has found the formula and has arrived, but as someone who recognized how fast life was going and decided to chronicle her journey to slow down.
The Lifegiving Home: Creating a Place of Belonging and Becoming by Sally Clarkson.
Sally Clarkson goes through the calendar year and gives moms ideas to focus on each month. Not necessarily how to make each holiday “the best one ever,” but how to focus on one aspect of each family member’s needs one month at a time and how to make home feel like home each month.
Each author definitely has their own distinct style, which I like. Each author speaks from their own experiences, giving them the credibility to speak on their topic. Each author focuses on a different area of focus. And in their own ways, each author has encouraged me in my journey to be more purposeful with my family.
Are there any books you are reading which have helped you approach life in a more purposeful way?