Summer’s here!

summer
summer
Image source: Google

Today is the first day of summer (you can get great summer deals today, including a free small blizzard at Dairy Queen), when it’s the longest day of the year in the U.S. and the shortest day of the year for people in Australia and residents south of the equator).

Heather, Andy, and their kids
Heather, Andy, and their kids

Our daughter Heather, her girls, her boyfriend Andy, and his kids, took off fast today for a much-needed break from work and a vacation in Branson, MO. It was a surprise for the kids.

There’s lots to do in Branson, although I joke to Ray that it’s “an old people’s place” with country hick singers and the entertainment shows (he loves it). However, Branson has beautiful scenery at Table Rock State Park and nice shopping and restaurants at Branson Landing.

Heather made a fun scavenger hunt at her house, where the kids looked for clues all over the house, until they got to the last clue which read that they were going on summer vacation in Branson. She is such a fun mom! The kids loved the scavenger hunt!

Me & Leah at our home for Thanksgiving 2017
Me & Leah at our home

Today I went to lunch with our youngest daughter Leah. When she was still living at home, she and I would go to lunch every two weeks when Ray was paid.

This was our mom-daughter special time together. After she moved out, I wanted to continue the tradition. Leah now stays busy working, taking her violin lessons, drawing her art, and doing stuff with her friends. We still try to go out every couple of weeks for our “mom-daughter” time.

A Moment's Pause Art Print
A Moment’s Pause art print
Copyright 2018 Leah Jones

You can follow Leah on Instagram @leah.merae to see the art she’s working on recently from daily prompts. You can also check out and buy her art at her Society 6 online store (Leah Merae).

I try to do lunches with Heather, too, only she lives much further away (an hour), she works more than full-time hours, and she is constantly busy, but we see each other when we possibly can.

Eden & her family
Eden & her family

Our middle daughter Eden stays very busy too, working 3 jobs, but she and Ray regularly text and video chat. We drop by to see them at times, since they and Leah live down the street from us in Butler. 

Heather, Eden, and Leah
Heather, Eden, and Leah

While our three precious daughters stay on the go every day and live their own, busy lives, I’m still trying to adjust to the empty nest. (I digress from the first day of summer, but I’m going with the writing flow for now.)

I’m not going to lie. It’s hard. Real hard. The house feels so empty at times. (My marriage isn’t what it should be yet, though we are in Christian marriage counseling now.)

insomnia
woman with insomnia
Image source: Google

At night when things are often too quiet, I lay down, wrestling with insomnia again, and then the mom guilt attacks me. The regrets. The painful ache in my heart, missing their beautiful, sweet faces and their physical presence here.

The haunting, condemning thoughts of, “I should have done more fun things with them” or “I shouldn’t have yelled at them so much” or “Why was I so focused on a clean house instead of just enjoying my time with them more?” Sometimes I miss them so much.

These days I do stay busy with my speaking and writing books. When I’m in between books, I get so restless, and feel like I’m just going to absolutely come out of my skin from boredom and anxiety. Today at lunch, Leah wisely told me, “You need to find new hobbies, mom.”

burger & fries
burger & fries

“Like what?” I asked her in between bites of a juicy cheeseburger and french fries drowned in ketchup. 

Creative things like painting or playing a musical instrument. For example, right now I’m learning to make origami.

Nancy Wilson of Heart
Nancy Wilson of Heart
Image source: Google

I told her that while origami is cool, I don’t want to do that and that I don’t know how on earth to draw or to play an instrument. The only instrument I’ve ever wanted to learn how to play was piano (which I quit my lessons as a child) and the guitar, so I could pretend to be Heart’s musician Nancy Wilson.  But I wanted to play bass guitar, not rhythm. I never learned how, and now I have no desire to be a rock star.

“What else can I do?” I asked my child who is wise beyond her years.

Whatever I want, she said. And Leah thinks that anyone can learn to draw or to play an instrument, no matter what your age is. It’s not too late to learn something new!

Cliffs of Moher
Cliffs of Moher
Image source: Google

Here are some things I DO want to do–this summer:

  • Spend time with God and our family;
  • Travel somewhere new;
  • Start my walking/jogging routine again (pray for my self-discipline, puh-leeze! I’ve gained all my weight back!)
  • Drink more water and continue healthy eating (cut carbs and sugar dramatically, more salads and fresh veggies);
  • Restore our marriage;
  • Possibly write a children’s book with Leah illustrating the art on the front cover (she’s thinking about it!);
  • De-clutter my office (tame the paper tiger!);
  • Go horseback riding somewhere;
  • Have some much needed down time at the beach, my place of rest and refilling;
  • Visit my family and friends in different states;
  • Go on another train ride;
  • Speak at a women’s conference (several times would be great!);
  • Lead at least one person to Christ, hopefully more;
  • See God moving in our family, drawing us closer to Him and one another;
  • Visit the mountains; 
  • Ride a hot air balloon ride with Ray, drinking champagne;
  • Have roses bloom in my home garden;
  • Grow more Christ-like, in the fruit of the Spirit.
  • Laugh more. 

These are just some of the things I’d love to do. What about you? Share your comments below.

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New sunflower theme

It’s Friday evening, sunset. Today hasn’t been super busy, but steady. I dropped off Ray at work early (we have one car), had my morning joe with prayer and reading the Bible, petted my black cat Natalya a long time, then walked and slow jogged at the track.

Our adorable grandson Jacob
Our adorable grandson Jacob

This afternoon I picked up our grandson Jacob and dropped him off at our daughter Eden’s house, hung out with her chatting a bit (watching Piper eat a slice of pizza and Willow sitting up in her baby chair & gooing), and then came home to dry a load of laundry as Eden’s dryer broke yesterday! Not something she needs right now, having just started a new job, with a baby, an active toddler who loves getting into everything, and her sweet but rambunctious son who gets easily bored when not at school!

Craig & Eden
Craig (Eden’s husband & our son-in-law) & our middle daughter Eden

 

Eden & Piper
Eden & her “busy bee” toddler daughter, Piper

 

Eden & Willow
Eden & her baby girl Willow

This week I tackled my email inbox, which is quite a feat; emails had snowballed and I became overwhelmed trying to deal with them! I deleted and filed over 17,500 emails, and archived the rest to get emails down to zero. Now I can rest my mind!

Today I also changed my website theme at BethJones.net. I do this whenever I feel restless, bored, frustrated, or any number of emotions. At least it’s better than eating too much chocolate!

Yellow cake with chocolate frosting www.bakingthroughmsbh.files.wordpress.com-2010-03-slice1
Yellow cake with chocolate frosting
www.bakingthroughmsbh.files.wordpress.com-2010-03-slice1

I chose a beautiful sunflower picture for my website header, after writing my most recent book that has a cover of a sunflower and an orange butterfly. You can find that book here at Amazon. (It’s called Metamorphosis: Transformed From Despair to Hope)

Sunflowers track the sun. The flower buds and young blossoms will face east in the morning and follow the sun as the earth moves during the day. Even so, may you and I always lift our faces toward and follow the Son and the Light, Jesus. He is the King & is coming soon.

Sunflowers
Sunflowers

The navigation is a little different than my last theme, but you can find the main pages at the top of the page.

woman drinking juice
woman on laptop

To read my latest blog posts, click on “Blog” at the top of the page, or look on the right sidebar, scrolling down a little until you see “Recent Blog Posts.”

You can connect with me other places online with the social media icons on the right sidebar, my links on the sidebar “Other Places Beth is online” (such as my Podcast), and catch my Instagram pics on the sidebar as well. 

As always, if you have any questions or comments, are interested in hiring me as a speaker for your women’s conference or online event, or have a question about my books or online trainings, you can contact me here.

Beth Jones, International Speaker Amazon Best Seller Author
Beth Jones, International Speaker
Amazon Best Seller Author

 

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Stop meditating on the couch cushions and save the people

Couch potato Image: http://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-eats/healthy-eating/healthy-eating-athletes/view-all/
Couch potato
Image: http://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-eats/healthy-eating/healthy-eating-athletes/view-all/

I didn’t get a lot of sleep last night, so instead of laying in bed tossing and turning, I got up and did chores. Afterward, I watched Dr. Aikyna D. Finch on Periscope. She is a very anointed, smart, and hilarious lady. One of the things she shared today was, “Stop meditating on the couch cushions and save the people. You have a message to share that others need to hear. How are you changing the world?”

Her scope was so convicting, especially since I was actually sitting on the couch as she said this! I really felt that God was speaking straight through her to my heart. Dr. Finch, who is a university faculty trainer, talked about the excuses we often give for not sharing our message with others.

Bible
Bible

Yes, God wants you and me to pray, read the Bible, worship, go to church, and all that jazz. But Jesus also commanded His disciples to go into the world and make disciples. (Matthew 28:19)

There is a lost world out there and not a lot of time left before Christ returns. And there is only one you with your specific calling and unique gifts to help others. It’s time to use your gifts and go save the people!

I needed that kick in the but this morning from Dr. Finch. How about you? 

***

Check out my books that I’ve written to help you in using your spiritual gifts at my Amazon Author Page below:

http://www.amazon.com/author/bethmjones/

 

 

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