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March 13, 2006

books

Since I joined Women4God Blogs, I’m starting to visit more people’s blogs, and I’m realizing that everybody has a different style of writing and even a different niche. Some people are witty and describe things in a funny way; others are great at expounding on scripture or other deep issues of life.

I’m not exactly sure what my niche is — but it’s pretty obvious I like talking about books and writing. So when you come into my blog, you’ll probably be hit over and over again with my encouragement for you to write down and share your life stories.

In his blog at The Writing Life, Terry Whalin recently wrote about his lifelong habit of capturing memories with words. I thought he offered some great advice — I hope you can click over and read his post on this topic. Sometimes we try to capture our favorite moments with a camera, but it’s also good to jot down a few sentences. Terry described how he wrote down a brief conversation when his family was going through a difficult and sad time (one of their children was dying). But later he was able to go back and write the story up, which was published in Decision Magazine and read by thousands of people.

Now, here’s what we’ve been doing in our house at dinner every night, thanks to learning about this from Mary DeMuth. She shared how her family plays high/ low during their evening meal in France. They go around the table, and each person gets to say what the high point of their day was and the low point.

Before we started doing this, my husband and I were always trying to talk to each other across the table, catching up from our day. We’d tell the kids to be quiet and listen — which of course didn’t work very often. With the age our kids are, someone always needs the ketchup (catsup?), spills something, needs another napkin, is humming or wiggling too much, needs a refill, etc. (You know, right?)

Now I have this little agenda — we take turns and each child gets to share their favorite part of the day, and their least favorite. Even our toddler says things like, “I liked playing in the new sand in my sandbox. I didn’t like when I had to take a nap.” It’s amazing what kids will say. And it makes us all feel closer when we share the low points because it gives us a new perspective. Things aren’t so bad when you can share them with your family. (Even me — having to share my low points about cleaning up some messes you don’t even want to know about!)

Guess what my high point of the day has become? You got it. Playing high/ low. And of course, the busy mom writer that I am, I’m jotting these tidbits down in a little spiral notebook which I keep by the kitchen table. The funny thing is that my girls also bring spiral notebooks to the table now. We just laughed so hard last night because all us girls at the table were busy writing in our notebooks. We of course put them away so we could eat! (Can I just tell you how adorable their writing is? My heart is FULL after a meal now!)

I don’t know that we’ll do this EVERY SINGLE night, but I’m just imagining what my notebook will look like in five or ten years if I do make a consistent habit of jotting down our highs and lows. Hopefully, someday I’ll be able to go back and write up some stories. It will be fun to see how the kids grow and change every year.

I mean, despite all the cluttery countertops, endless laundry, and fast-paced schedules, being a mom is a joyful role — bringing us closer to the heart of God, who is also a father and loves writing down stories about his children too.

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Don’t forget … tomorrow by 3 pm, post something on the topic of “My Life” and send it to this week’s Carnival of Beauty Host, Sallie of Two Talent Living. Finally! She’s hosting her own Carnival. Now, there’s never been an easier topic, so let’s all send her something!

This week and next: I’ve got two great interviews to share with you from busy moms who’ve done some amazing things. One mom is going to tell us how she started her own newspaper column based on her ability to look for humor in the crazy things of life. She also runs a successful business from her home and will be giving us some tips on working at home — WITH kids.

Another interview is with a mom who didn’t think she was a very good cook, so she decided to start swapping meals with a friend — and the most incredible thing began to happen that led to her being featured on Dr. Laura Schlessinger’s talk radio show. So check back in and visit — I should have these posted soon!

By: Heather Ivester in: Writing | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (9)



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