Scaling Back

(This post contains affiliate links.) I have a small obsession with the holiday season. I love the festivity, the togetherness, the decor, the traditions–all of it. But upon reflection, I can see how I can turn so many of the special holiday activities into a burden. All the memories I want to make become a looming checklist that brings more stress than joy some days. As a result, I am attempting to scale back and focus on just a few special traditions: Advent We believe it is important to celebrate Advent because it allows us to teach, reflect, and worship … Read more…

This Time Last Year

November is slipping by quickly in our house. In fact, this whole year seems to be picking up speed as it comes to a close. It’s left me reflecting on how many changes this year has brought. Reflection helps me to slow down and appreciate all that God has done. As a family, we’ve been trying to slow down and give thanks more–counting the gifts as Ann Voskamp would call it. I can tell a major difference when I choose to give thanks versus days that I give in to anxiety and fear. Many days stress builds in my chest … Read more…

Life as a Second-Time Mom

Earlier this week I talked with a new mom who has a three-week old baby and is desperate for sleep and concerned about her daughter’s persistent crying. We talked a lot about the anxiety of being a first-time mom and realizing you have no idea what you are doing. She asked me what I wished I would have known the first time around. So many things . . .  After visiting with her I kept thinking about how hard is hard. Whether you have one child or ten, hard is hard. Our conversation also got me thinking about how different things … Read more…

Play – The Moving Force of Development

I am so excited to share Claire’s post with you today. Claire Adams is a professional development expert and believer in the power of a positive attitude. She is also quite sweet and patient. As many of you have noticed and kindly inquired, The Engaged Home has been quiet lately. As with our daughter, we’ve found the 4-8 month stage one of the most difficult for us as parents. So many major transitions seem to happen. Only now we have two babies and a two-year-old. Between teething, colds, and a severe lack of sleep, we bunkered down as a family … Read more…