This Thursday was my 50th birthday. I wanted to write a blog post about 50 things I’ve learned in 50 years. This isn’t all I’ve learned, but it’s a start.
1. God is first, God is last, and God is everything in between. “For in Him we live and move and have our being.” (Acts 17:28)
2. Jesus is my Best Friend. I don’t know what I’d do without Him.
3. Next to the gift of my salvation through Jesus, my family is the most precious gift God has ever given me. My kids are my undeserved blessings from God; motherhood is the most important and sacred work God has given me on this earth.
4. And sometimes your own family members can be your worst enemy! Jesus said love your enemies. (Matthew 5:43-48)
5. Kids teach you patience. LOTS of patience. I’m still learning.
6. Sometimes you need to just stop what you’re doing and have fun. Lighten up. Smile and laugh a lot more! Especially do this with your kids and grandkids.
7. God uses the most painful things that hurt you the most in the most unexpected, precious, beautiful ways.
8. I will never look like perfect Texan women, who constantly look like they just stepped out of the salon (like my mother-n-law Judy). Not my hair. Not my makeup. Not my nails.
9. Men and women are different. Really different. God has a sense of humor to put them together.
10. Take pictures and videos of everything. Your kids grow up so fast. SO fast. Cherish the moments with them every day. And if you homeschool, please know it ends much too quickly. I ache for it again and wish I could have those years back.
11. Real men cry. Women NEED to cry – even though it freaks men out and makes them feel helpless and uncomfortable and will do anything to make her stop. It’s okay for me to cry. A lot. Tears heal and make you feel better. Nothing like a good Scarlett O’Hara crying jag.
12. Meryl Streep movies and chic flic movies cure boredom and depression. Even if Ray does hate Meryl Streep.
13. Babies are miracles.
14. The best education you can get isn’t always in school. Your kids, life’s hardships, and nature teach you more.
15. Some of the most intelligent people (I.Q. wise) don’t have a lick of common sense.
16. Always keep a clean house. When you least expect it, someone will suddenly drop by when the house is a complete wreck.
17. When you go out, dress decently and wear your makeup. Invariably, you will see someone you know or meet someone important while you’re out and be totally humiliated, looking like a slob.
18. Black eyeliner is my trademark and a defense against life’s hard times.
19. Red roses, sunflowers, and daisies create happiness.
20. Chocolate heals. Ultra fine black Sharpies and pretty stationery make a bad day good. Eating at Mexican or Mediterranean restaurants restore. Do what you love and be happy. Ride the train, San Franciso street car, or hot air balloon. Go to Europe or Africa. Travel to all the U.S. States. See the Statue of Liberty and Niagara Falls and Grand Canyon. Go horseback riding. Make a bucket list and then do it before you die.
21. Don’t live in a way that you’ll regret it tomorrow. Or 25 years later.
22. Your parents really are smarter the older you get.
23. I hated it when my father made us do all kind of work instead of sleeping, laying around, or watching the Flinstones. Today I appreciate it because I have a strong work ethic.
24. “…better a neighbor nearby than a brother far away.” – Proverbs 27:10
25. Some of the most incredible friends I’ve ever made, I’ve never met in real life (my online friends).
26. Rainbows always give you hope.
27. Rain is beautiful and an extravagant gift.
28. Sometimes there really can be a thing as too much snow. (trapped in our house for 3 days from the snowstorm)
29. S’mores and cartoon movies unite families.
30. Pets can be good for a family; they can also drive families apart.(No more scaly reptiles, Ray!)
31. Your kids are all different and unique and wonderful. Encourage them to use their creative, incredible God-given gifts each day and shine in this world.
32. Traveling makes me happy. Traveling inspires.
34. Going on vacation with your husband helps you to have hotter sex.
35. Pack light. On trips. Emotionally and spiritually.
36. Hug those you love and tell them every day you love them. Life is very short and unpredictable.
37. Forgiveness isn’t an option. Forgiveness sets you the prisoner free. Forgive unconditionally because God has been so merciful with you and me. Besides, you don’t want to wind up an old, bitter person who nobody wants to be around.
38. It’s not a sin to be wealthy or better to be poor. God wants to bless and prosper you. Be a good steward, work hard, and believe God for abundance!
39. Some of your friends aren’t really your friends.
40. Use your gifts. Pray, “Here I am, Lord, send me.” He will. God wants to use you in ways you can’t even imagine.
41. God will expose the truth. Pray and trust Him. He will also deal with those who attack you and speak against you.
42. If you judge, others will judge you. It comes back into your own life. Remember mercy triumphs over judgment.
43. Brush and floss. Don’t let your kids eat those candied apples or lots of candy or sugar. Trust me.
44. Don’t buy so many Christmas presents that you’re broke for a month afterward. And ask people what they really want for Christmas. Then get them that, not useless items that they don’t like and that makes you broke. Create special family traditions to make sweet memories. (Jewish feasts, Ray’s holiday ham, Heather singing “Carol of the Bells” in her red Santa hat, me decorating the tree with Christmas music, Leah giving out the gifts, Eden’s cupcakes, etc.)
45. Your Irish temper doesn’t work forth God’s righteousness or purpose. And being angry about it won’t help anyway.
46. Panty hose are the devil. So glad I don’t have to wear them any more! Wedge shoes are the bomb with dresses -no hose!
47. Sometimes being quiet and praying is the very best thing to do.
48. Save money. Spend less. Be content and thankful to God for His daily blessings, especially here in America. Even if you are struggling financially, there are people all over the world who are much worst off than you – pray for them. Give generously to others.
49. Take care of your body. Cherish it. It’s God’s temple and the vehicle for your great purpose and destiny.
50. Love God and others every day. Leave a legacy of love.
What are some of the things you have learned in life? Share in the comments below.
In honor of my 50th birthday, I’m having a 50% off sale on all my products and services. Click here to learn more.