Soulful Sojourning

Real Life, Real Love

I t all starts with MOOOOOOMMMMMMM! Isaac ate dog food! MOM! Isaac’s sucking on a sponge and spraying water all over the bathroom. Mom! Isaac’s climbing into the dryer!

The chaos seems all consuming lately. The prettier I try to make my web life, the uglier I see my real life. There aren’t any travel adventures or Instagram moments today, unless you want pictures of all the things I’m scraping off my stovetop or the size of my dust bunnies.

When there are more unmatched socks than pairs, more bills than money, more unanswered phone calls than time in the day, I hear the lie whisper in my ear, you are not capable.

I’ll be the first to admit I’m not capable. Life is difficult no matter what your circumstance. However, what scares me is when I insert lovable for capable. The lie takes over and I hear you are not capable therefore you are not lovable.

Why does this lie have so much power over me? I don’t apply it to my children. I change multiple diapers a day, cut up apples and chicken nuggets, wash countless soiled clothes and wipe snotty noses. No matter how big the mess, I still delight in sticky fingers, chubby feet and sloppy kisses. I never love my son any less because he’s not capable of caring for himself.

It’s the same with my lovely third grader. Even as she’s learning to make eggs and do multiplication, I never love her any less if she leaves shoes in every room of the house or needs to be asked 37 times to empty the dishwasher. I’m also grateful for a husband whose love is not contingent on my housekeeping skills or the money I bring home.

So why is my internal dialogue so polluted? In our home, we say often that our love is not dependent on performance. One day we will be exceptionally proud, another disappointed but love is unconditional. There will be praise and there will be consequences but love never changes.

Breathe in. Breathe out. As the old year fades into the new, I pray for grace and the stillness to listen. Listen to my children, listen to the birds, listen to the compliments my husband gives so generously that often get drowned out by children and self-doubt. Most importantly, that I listen to my creator. Listen to the dreams he has for me, the encouragement, the strength, the correction and the truth to see myself in the way he does, every moment of every day.

20 “But that is not the way you learned Christ!— 21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, 22 to put off your old self,[f] which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” Ephesians 4:20-24 ESV

By God’s grace,

#reallifereallove

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Keeping My Promise

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The child of missionary parents, writing became a natural was to process my adventures across the world.

Ndjerareou means 'he who builds the road in Ngambai, Nate's tribal language spoken in Chad, Africa.

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My Insta-happenings

  • “Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn--that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness--that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling.” -Jane Austen, Persuasion.
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#mainstayfarms #fall #takeawalkwithme #thoughtfulmoments #poetryinplay #wanderings #nofilterneeded #nothinglikefall #changeofseasons
  • “Being a daddy’s girl is like having permanent armor for the rest of your life.” – Marinela Reka
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This is the smile my father only shows a few people. It’s his silly, happy, smile, the one I see when he’s with his family (they make the same grin!) Honestly, my heart skipped a beat when I saw I’d caught it on camera. He’s a tender hearted man but making him laugh is like wings on my soul!  #daddiesgirl #loveyou #makingmemories #comeforawalk #letsgooutside #sunshineandlaughter #letsplay #grateful
  • Shenanigans with Nana & Papa! A little sunshine goes a long way. Our family was thankful for a way to play together while daddy was on a trip. We miss him terribly but the sheep races, zip line, swings, apple canon epic slides,  pedal go carts, hay rack rides and mazes helped. Thank you Nana & Papa for all the memories! .
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#mainstayfarms #pumpkinpatch #dst #letsplay #theyllsleeptonight #fall #texas #comeplaywithme #memories #farm
  • We voted! (Well one of us did!)The other learned a valuable lesson about civics and you’re never too old for a sticker. Last day for early voting!
. “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6 #vote
  • Wakanda Forever! Happy Halloween from the Ndjerareou’s #happyhalloween #blackpanther #shuri #allthecandy
  • “Your fears are real. You will fail. The critics will continue to earn their employment. For me, the joy far outweighs the risk of failure." -
@jonforeman
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Night of inspiration, celebrating all the risks creatives take for the simple act of touching another’s heart in sound, sight and word. Thankful I’ve found my tribe, one that pours all it has into the world and each other. Thankful for a community that values the power of expression and it’s ability to lift us out of heavy times, give voice to causes worth fighting or the joyful songs we sing to celebrate all that is good, human and beautiful in this world. .
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#arthousedallas #mytribe #jonforeman #arthouse #switchfoot #findyourvoice #tellyourstory #creativityforthecommongood #celebrate #joy #grateful
  • “Thou comest, Autumn, heralded by the rain, 
With banners, by great gales incessant fanned, 
Brighter than brightest silks of Samarcand, 
And stately oxen harnessed to thy wain! 
Thou standest, like imperial Charlemagne, 
Upon thy bridge of gold; thy royal hand 
Outstretched with benedictions o'er the land, 
Blessing the farms through all thy vast domain! 
Thy shield is the red harvest moon, suspended 
So long beneath the heaven's o'er-hanging eaves; 
Thy steps are by the farmer's prayers attended; 
Like flames upon an altar shine the sheaves; 
And, following thee, in thy ovation splendid, 
Thine almoner, the wind, scatters the golden leaves!”
Autumn by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
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#longfellow #poetry #fall #pumpkin #mood #reflection #changeofseasons #enjoyingthewordsofanother
  • "I think food, culture, people and landscape are all absolutely inseparable."
-Anthony Bourdain
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There’s a chill in the air here, it’s made me nostalgic. Once a year a try I to recreate the taste of my first soup de l'oignon. A French onion soup served in a little Christmas market at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. It’s been nine years but this weekend @thepioneerwoman recipe delivered all the nuance and flavor of that first, delicate memory. Maybe I’ve finally gotten wise enough to appreciate the importance of technique and time. Caramelizing the onions on the stove for 20 minutes, then in the oven for an hour, the flavors melt in your mouth. Invest in the Guyere, she said, and she was right. We found Paris, in our kitchen and a little bit of the glow of wandering, floated into our everyday. Here’s to discovery around the world and here at home. .
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#tastetheworld #surlatabletogether #paris #adventuresinthekitchen #thetasteofmemories #memories #warmfoodcoldday #greatfoodgreatcompany #takethetimetocreate #soupdeloignon #memoriesinthemaking #comeawaywithme #deliveradventureonerecipeatatime #thetasteofparis