Not.

One of the things I love about blogging is the way it encourages me to look for the blessings in my life. I love sharing the beautiful bits, and hope that reading about them encourages you as well. I choose not to dwell on challenges here, but that doesn’t mean my life is all sunshine and laughter.

I feel overwhelmed some days too, especially lately going from 8 to 10 children. My kids fight. I get grumpy. The kitchen floor gets so sticky sometimes you could lose a flip-flop. I make time to blog by ignoring bed-making and dusting and hanging up my clothes. I do think I get the essentials done most days, especially when it comes to what my children need. But I also am very conscious of the many things I don’t do, or don’t do well, anyway.

I don’t often blog about the negative things in my life, because that’s not the kind of blog I want to have. But I would never want my readers to feel discouraged about their own lives after reading only about the good bits of mine.

Just so you know.

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  1. That’s good to know!! hehehe! I think we all KNOW that everyone else doesn’t have perfect lives and perfect children, but it’s easy to get caught up in the idea that “if only I was like _________super-mom, then my life would look more like her’s does!”

    I really do enjoy your blog, and I understand the desire to stay positive. It’s a choice to focus on the good instead of dwelling on the not-so-good!

  2. I know exactly what you mean about staying positive. You worded it so well. I, too, blog about the good things. I find that it makes me feel so good to do it…and it wouldn’t make me feel good to write about the negative. Experiencing it once is bad enough, but I see no reason to write it all down to experience again. You have a talent with words!

  3. I adore you for exactly who you are. ‘Nuf said.

  4. Nice thoughts here. I have not ever really considered if my blog is positive or negative but I find I am often asking myself if I am being honest. Overall life is good and I suspect as I blog about the good and the bad that comes through. I have a friend who tells me he wants to hear more about the hard stuff not because he wants to be depressed, but because he wants me to be honest so he can better prepare for what lies ahead.

    I think your blog is great and it is very encouraging. I find it even more encouraging to know that you struggle with sticky floors and while it sometimes gets you down, you still find joy in the journey. That is truly encouraging.

    CrazyD

  5. What a generous entry. You do focus on the positive, but I’ve never thought your blog is sugar-coated either. I especially appreciate your honesty over at the adoption blog about those issues. As a matter of fact, I just wrote about that today and mentioned your “four things” entry as being inspirational.
    Sorry about your sticky floor. Having that drives me batty too 🙂

  6. I love reading your blog and admire you for trying to make it a positive place!

  7. If I want to hear gripes and complaining, all I have to do is sit in the corner of the Break Room at work.
    I figure your life has its ups and downs like anybody else, but you choose to write about the nicer parts.

    This is why I like to come here 😉
    and if I, myself, am not in sync with what you wrote today, well the next good read is only a click away in my Bookmarks.

    Then I’ll stop by later to see what else you’ve got going.

    I must say you have caused me to break the commandment about coveting.
    Your pantry full of home-canned garden goodies represents a whole lot more energy than I can muster.

  8. I have never really thought about the blog ‘I want to have’. I just brain dump, feel better and move on. And people actually want to read it. Go figure.

    I tend to blog about the bad things, trying to see the lighter or funnier side of it. Sometimes I think that comes across as harsh or insensitive. Oh well. That is is not my intention.

    Today I have blogged about stuff that has been bothering me. Something that is keeping me awake at night. Something wonderful has turned into another stress in my life and I just need to get it out. I guess my blog is like my diary, left open on the coffee table for everyone to see.

  9. as you know i love reading your blog because of all the wonderful real pieces of your life that you share. as a reader i personally appreciate the positive tone – with your down to earth attitude and honest helpful advice. we are all human but you dear mary are truely just plain super no matter how you slice it.

  10. I know things are tough sometimes. But always know, friend, that I pray for your family.

  11. I love reading your blog, too, but I have to admit that I think, even with ten kids, you have it “way more together” than I do, with only three kids. Maybe you don’t!

    Maybe you lose it sometimes, too!

    That WOULD make me feel a little bit better about my own little temper tantrums and occasional lack of confidence.

  12. I am blessed by your words as I look at the large pile of clean laundry thrown on the floor in the hallway. It is calling to me, however, I really don’t want to deal with it right now. Reading blogs is much more fun.

  13. Enjoyed reading this and will undoubtedly visit more often. As the mother of three adult children, I think the most important things you can do for children are to love them and provide a sense of acceptance…security too. Not long ago, I came across this adorable picture of my son sleeping on a pillow case that didn’t match the sheets in any way, shape, or form. He was about three at the time and absolutely adorable; he’s now 23 and still adorable.

    When I first looked at the photo, I immediately felt guilty because of the mismatched linens, but then I looked more closely at his sleeping face and knew that awake or asleep, it really didn’t matter to him. What mattered was that when he and his sisters were up and about, their parents did the absolute best they could to care for and nurture them.

  14. You don’t have to show us all your dirty laundry – just knowing you have some, like the rest of us – is enough for me 🙂

    And here is my question – we have just added child #6, how is it that our dirty dishes and laundry has increased exponentially?? This child seems to take up more space than you would think her 70 pound frame would allow. I can only imagine how adding two kids at once has changed your life. I’ll have to hop over to your adoption blog and find out.

  15. For what it’s worth, for the year I’ve been reading your blog, I have always been impressed by how you come across as so positive and uplifting WITHOUT seeming obnoxiously bubbly or ignoring the other side or fake in any way at all. I always enjoy reading here, and come away feeling better. So thanks. 🙂

  16. I agree w/ falwyn (above)…you always manage to be upbeat without being unbelievable. Your blog is a sweet oasis in the internet desert.

  17. I am with you! I tend to blog the good times as well. Life is just pure chaos at our house at times, and when I blog the positives, i tend to have a better outlook on my day.

  18. Marlajayne–all I’ve known all my life is mismatched linens.

    What I can’t understand is why anybody cares what they _look _ like because in the dark, the most important part is how they feel next to my skin.
    And I do like me some t-shirt knit cotton sheets for my legs, with flannel pillowcases for my face!

  19. You know what? It’s so good to hear you say that… I read your blog regularly, and I’m always like, “Wow…she cans…she has a garden…and she has ten kids and homeschools…wow…I don’t even have any kids yet, and I can’t find time to can…maybe I can be like her someday” but it’s encouraging to know that sometimes you feel discouraged, too 🙂 Hope you’re having a good day!!!

  20. I like your honesty, Mary. And I also like that you are a positive person with an uplifting blog. 🙂

  21. You’re blog is an encouragement to me because for years I have had a desire to adopt a lot of kids after I get married, and I hear stories that make me wonder if I would have the strength. But reading your blog helps me to see living proof of the joys, and it gives me hope and excitement. Thank you for a look into your life.

  22. I love your blog, and it is good to have someone to admire. I still do think you are a sort of supermom, but so nice and humble of you to say it isn’t all roses all the time. Hang in there with the new girls; despite the challenges, sounds like you guys are doing so well, and it is only going to get better.

  23. Thank you for the reality check Mary!
    And your pantry looks absolutely scrumpious (sp?).
    Do you have a local farmer’s market by you, I bet you could make some serious $$$.

  24. Uh huh!

  25. Thank you! 🙂

  26. can I just tell you how important it was for me to read that?

  27. Thanks for this–I’ve been wondering how all these mommy bloggers keep up with everyday chores! I had to cut my blogging down to early am only–my blog is mostly about homemaking: have to practice what I preach! With so many kiddos, it’s a wonder you can think straight, let alone blog 🙂