25 November, 2010

Fall: My Season

I love the fall. There is nothing quite like the feeling of walking out of the house and smelling the decay of leaves and the crisp fall air. I love the slight bite in the wind and the gently warmth I feel when I enter an establishment. I love bundling up and taking the kids for a walk.

For many, fall signifies a time of death and darkness. While I mourn the end of Saturday morning market with the final ritual canning and a savory butternut squash soup, I embrace the peace and life I find in the shortening days of autumn.

There is a slowing of life in the enveloping darkness of the late days of fall. I identify with a mama bear as my instinct to hibernate kicks in. I become more efficient and less concerned with the stress of the world. My priorities naturally shift to a greater focus on my family and for a short period of time each year society supports my priorities with sappy commercials about family holidays and especially patient church-goers.

John Ross was born at the end of November. Nothing more life-giving than that. I can't eat Thanksgiving dinner without remembering those last precious (and impatient) hours that my son was still inside me.

And on the tail of the fall season is Advent. The anticipation of the impending arrival of the Savior is certainly known to this mama. This year however, it is the peace and hush that I hope to embrace.

Yes, my children are 2 and 7 months.

Yes, I am a working mama.

Yes, I hosted Thanksgiving and Christmas is out of town this year.

I figure, if Mary can manage to give birth to Jesus in a cave and invite the shepherds in to view the little man a few hours later, I can find a few moments of peace each night to be quiet and remember God's provision. Perhaps, by Christmas, I will be ready to welcome the Savior into my heart and not just my home.

09 November, 2010

I've Never Been So Thankful for Lunch!

My son invited me to lunch the other day. This may not seem significant at first glance, but he's 2.

I sat him down for lunch and turned to go to the kitchen to do my usual chores while he ate. As I stepped across the threshold between the two rooms, I heard an insistent “Aye! Aye!” and turned around to see him repeatedly pointing his finger to the table and saying “Seat! Seat!” He was clearly inviting me to join him for our meal. He had classified meal time as family time. He had internalized our pattern and simply made it a part of himself. He didn’t have to think about it, he just acted as the Spirit prompted him.

At this time of year, between family and holidays, it is easy to get caught up in the necessity of doing. We must do the shopping, do the cooking, and do the driving. Then we must do the working to pay for the shopping and the cooking and the driving. Often, in all of our doing, we forget to be present in the moment and give thanks for the gift of ourselves.

The life of a steward begins when you realize that all you have and more importantly, all you are, is a gift. John Ross’ invitation was to more than just lunch. He invited me to simply be that which God has made me. Through my 2-year-old, Jesus called me out of my doing and invited me to sit at His feet as a mother, a wife, and a beautiful daughter of God.

08 November, 2010

Status Update: Amberly Says Goodbye to Facebook

Perhaps you've noticed that I haven't been very consistent about writing on this blog lately. It has been just one of many creative casualties of Facebook. Below you will find a note I sent to my closest Facebook friends about why I was choosing to delete my account. I hope you will join me here regularly for updates!


Hello all you lovely ladies,

I’m just writing a quick note to those on my Facebook account who have made an effort to meet me or stay connected to me. After taking a few extended hiatuses from Facebook this past year, I’ve decided to delete my account. Without going into too much detail, Facebook has become a time and creativity sucker for me and my family. I am tired of feeling like I have lost time and energy to something that is supposed to be community-building. If I am going to spend time building community, I should be seeking depth instead of breadth. In being honest with myself, Facebook is a way for me as an introvert to “communicate” without having to make much effort and it feeds a very unhealthy passive-aggressive nature within me. While the disconnected, no pressure nature of Facebook may seem appealing to me on the surface, it is not the person I want to be in the lives of those I care about. I was created for something greater. I am a woman and I was designed to fill the empty space within me by way of deep relationships with others. Facebook keeps me from answering that call. Don’t get me wrong…I love my technology and will likely rely on e-mail for the convenience factor and will continue to update my winkflash pages with my photos.

So, I’m going to be deleting my account as soon as I can get my data extracted and all my items deleted. I hope to be complete by the end of next week. Whether an old or new friend, I do want to stay in touch, I just want to do so in a deeper way. Please contact me by phone or by e-mail. I am also on Skype. If you are one of those people who enjoy seeing photos of my children, touch base with me and I will give you our family Winkflash page and password.

Please know that this choice is a reflection on none of you and instead a choice I am making for my own heart and the well-being of my family.

Many blessings to you!