faith · just write life · organizing · Photos · pinterest · writing

Sometimes You’re Just Making Life Too Hard

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I knew exactly where this precious gem was. In my Winter 2016 Album.

I had a revelation the other night.

Something my husband’s been telling me for awhile.

I make things too hard.

For months, he’s listened to me whine about how digitally cluttered my life feels–especially in regard to photos. (Sometimes I actually miss film. Then, you see, I was forced to print in order to see the photos, and even if stuck in a box, at least I knew where they were and there was potential for an album.)

I went on and on about how I don’t understand how iPhoto is importing my pictures and the Cloud and the Dropbox and my Phone won’t sync properly and it must be because I had to buy a $6 replacement cord because I left mine at the lake SIX MONTHS AGO and because of all this it takes me 15 minutes to blog and at least ONE HOUR to post and I know I need to figure this out because then I can streamline things and it won’t take so long but I don’t have time to ORGANIZE PICTURES when I should be WRITING and MAKING MONEY–

Breath.

At which point he calmly said sometimes you have to do the menial task so you feel better.It’s not hard. It’s just time consuming.

Humph.

Just to prove him wrong I sat with my computer for 30 minutes on Sunday night while he and my girls had an epic piano battle with some game they all love on their electronic devices that are not the television because we gave that up for Lent.

I went on Pinterest. Stay focused.

I typed “organize iPhoto”. I got a site. Hmmm…organize my pictures in 10 minutes or less? I’ll bite.

This girl’s name looks familiar…oh, she was consulting with me about my blog redesign last summer. Okay, she’s credible.

Read post. Really? I didn’t know iPhoto had that feature. (i.e. I’ve never bothered to look.)

Followed instructions.

Voila! Photos impeccably organized into years and seasons just the way I like.

Screen Shot 2016-02-17 at 10.24.07 AM

Approximate time? Ten minutes.

Okay…I didn’t want to give away that he might have been right, so I looked at some other pins. Maybe I could solve the import problem. There’s this???

Screen Shot 2016-02-17 at 10.01.50 AM
My “connecting camera opens” was checked No Application.

 

Still skeptical (and too lazy to get up), I borrowed daughter’s handy iPod charger.

Over 300 photo and video imports later, my phone stopped telling me my storage was full.

And that, my friends, made my life seem a tad bit easier. Or at least less cluttered.

It’s really, really easy to get overwhelmed. We live in a digitally driven, social media noisy, always connected world. Our brains are being rewired to require constant stimulation, when our God tells us He made us to crave rest.

Rejuvenation.

Respite.

Relaxation.

And sometimes, we have to stop and just do the menial task. Because that one calm act–making the bed, washing the dishes, organizing the photos–brings cosmos into our chaos.

And peace into our souls.

 

What one thing can you do today that will bring a little calm? 

motherhood · organizing

The Great Clothing Purge of 2013

The other day I had this major meltdown over the grocery budget and trying to figure out how to buy diapers and paper towels and toilet paper and actual food with the amount we take out in cash every week.  And then when I had calmed down and was headed to the backyard for some reason or another, I had to pause and move aside the boxes of hand me downs blocking the door.

And I realized if there’s one way God has provided for us in excess, it’s in my children’s closets.

We’re often gifted hand me downs, love that, and I can rock a clearance or a consignment with the best of the money saving moms.  So if you look at how my kids dress, I wouldn’t imagine someone would think we ever struggle.

There are shirts from Justice and jeans from Gap and dresses from Children’s Place in that pile.  There are brand new winter boots and three winter coats and complete Gymboree outfits down to the hairbow. There are clothes to cover Amelia until first grade.  (fyi, she’s only three.)

When I finally got motivated to start sorting and purging, I was amazed at how much there was, and how something as simple as hand me downs could multiply into such a blessing.

I know I keep more than we need because I play the “what if” game in my mind.  What if one of them suddenly grows and nothing fits?  What if there’s a fire and all we have left is what’s been put in storage? What if we actually take a family vacation and I don’t want to do laundry?

What if I’m a hoarder of God’s blessings?

What if He wants me to bless someone else who struggles with day-to-day expenses but would be relieved to know clothing their baby girl can be crossed off that list?

So I went through all the girls’ clothes from size 2 to size 10.  I purged out items I love but they won’t wear. Items they say they like but never wear.  Items they don’t need multiples of and items that aren’t really our style.  I piled away items that weren’t good enough for consignment and took them to the local thrift store.  I separated the excess by size and then I hand-picked a bag of fabulous finds for a friend who needs to cross this worry off her list.  I gave it to her husband that afternoon, and still, there was so much left.  

I’ve got some others in mind to pass on to, and I’m sure I’ll consign a good bit and be grateful for the extra cash that puts in our pockets to offset the back-to-school expenses that will soon be upon us.

But, this fall I won’t have to buy jeans or long sleeve shirts or sweaters for any of them.  I can concentrate on new school shoes for the big girls, a raincoat for Madelynne since hers will pass to Annabelle, and they might get some new socks and underwear.  (Because, you know, some things don’t get passed.)

There’s relief in the simple realization that I don’t have to worry about where their next pair of jeans is coming from because the great God who paints skies and swirls fingerprints has already taken care of that one trite need for me.

Motivated by this post from The Purposeful Mom.  So how many clothes do you think kids really need?