O so many things have been happening here! We've finished our shop, had our grand opening, moved our home, celebrated Christmas, & enjoyed company! The last of 2013 was really busy & our main focus was just getting things done. We are looking forward to what this new year will bring & although there are still a few projects to finish around the house, we have been slowing down the pace to enjoy this new journey.
Our grand opening was a huge success! We had around 300 people show up! Family & friends all pitched in to help. We couldn't have done it all without them! We served a smoked deer sausage lunch & gave away many prizes. The kids had a big slide to play on. It was a lot of fun & very exciting! Business since has just been rolling in! To God be the glory!
Living here has been wonderful! We love the peace & quiet of country life yet being located right on the main highway not too far from town for our business. The kids love the room to roam around outside in the pecan orchard. Our yard size is no comparison! We have already built a big fire & roasted hot dogs & marshmallows one night. It's so nice to own our own property...to have our own business to walk to. It has been such a dream of ours for so long!
While Nathan & I had slipped off for time to ourselves recently, I bought several new books to read during our transition time & once we were settled. One I just finished & LOVED was "Why Am I So Busy?" by Valorie Burton. At first, I started to not even bother to get it thinking, duh Laurie...you have a family with 5 kids, home school, just finished building, in the process of moving right before the biggest holiday of the year, y'all pastor a church, & running a business...that's why you are so busy...no since in reading that book to add something else to your schedule! Well I believe it was God's perfect timing. As 2014 rolls around & things become normal again for us, what better time to slow down & prioritize? This book was such an encouragement! I have given a lot of prayer & reflection on my vision for our family & our schedule. I have remembered all of those things I would love to do but aren't. It has challenged me to ask myself why? Just when are you going to get around to that? My to do list isn't ever going to get done. The kids will be grown all too soon! I've thrown some things right out the window & haven't even missed them! In turn, I've began enjoying things that are important to us-like building that campfire, playing games at night with the kids such as hiding go seek with flashlights inside, singing silly songs with motions, & making more time for Bible stories & prayer all together as a family. I can already tell a difference in the attitudes around here & the joy that is present is immeasurable! Last night we played Guesstures. Even Raegan & Clay can act out things pretty well. It was lots of fun & lots of laughs. The kids have been going to bed much more happily & smiling brighter all the way. It brings joy to this mother's heart for bedtime not to be so rushed & praying because "we should." Instead of me feeling tired & barking the same orders over & over for them to "get baths, get your PJs on, brush your teeth, pick up your toys," I say, "Let's get ready for bed early so we can do something fun!" It's amazing how much that encourages them to not drag that out. They want so much of our attention & love. They can never get enough. This book has really opened up my eyes to many other areas of our life. If we want date nights, we should do it! Sometimes the money is tight, but maintaining (& enjoying) our relationship is the most vital part of this family. So far we've gone out once with friends & even spent one night off to ourselves! Fun, fun & very thankful we did!
So what's in store for you this year of 2014? It won't ever happen upon us again so be inspired & do something you've always wanted to do! At least consider your priorities & how in line they are with what you believe. Think about how happy you are or how happy you could be. Make a difference by doing something special for someone else. Even be encouraged to do something for yourself & take care of you! Happy 2014!