Monday, January 14, 2013

Our Everyday: Volume 1

This Christmas, my sister bought what is quickly becoming one of my most treasured gifts...a subscription to Seeing the Everyday: A magazine on the prosaic.

In its beginning pages it reads:
"Relationships develop in the prosaic moments -- in the common exchanges and experiences that make up the majority of our lives, yet are often overlooked and deemed unworthy of our best attention.  Do we rush through the oft repeated, ordinary tasks of caring for each other in anticipation of something more "important" or "fulfilling"?  We may begrudge or try to avoid these seemingly menial, caregiving activities and exchanges,  yet is it possible that they actually carry the greater meaning?  And have the more profound effect?  What if there are greater, sometimes hidden, purposes in our most common activities -- doing dishes, folding clothes, working in the yard together, making meals?  Without returning to the pre-automobile days, we can renew the relational purposes of everyday living and find perspective in seemingly inconsequential, common activities.  As we do, we will discover that nothing is really routine in life's daily work.  We will begin to really see the everyday."

My days are spent surrounded by boys...four of them.  My best friend and husband, and our two and one year old, and finally, our one month old.  Life is chaotic at times.  Some days don't go so well.  And there are days when I question what I do and how I do it.  Many times I catch myself going from one activity to the next, fueling my fire and believing my self-worth to increase by marking things off the to-do list and hoping the boys in the other room are getting along.

While I know a house has to function, laundry has to be done, meals made and babes clothed, too often my days center around those to-do list items rather than the souls searching for inclusion, a sacred five minutes of togetherness.  

The little guys are active!  And what do they want?  They want me to "build a tower," "come see toys," "read this book," and occasionally, "wock (rock)."  All they really want is me, in the form of my time, attention, and love.

So while I cannot spend every waking hour simply playing, I can incorporate them more into my day...into our everyday.  Thus, I've decided to be more focused, more intentional with our time together.  Every day will not go as planned.  Some days there will be more playing than others, and I'm sure I'll still spend a good amount of nap time perusing my favorite blogs, others' life updates on Facebook and latest projects on Pinterest.  However, for today, and only today, I will seek to "be here" live in these precious, at times routine, daily moments.

In an effort to focus more on my boys, I've decided to bring Carter into the kitchen.  His attention span isn't the longest, but he does love to turn on the mixer and pour ingredients into bowls (and on the floor).  So, we're embarking on a "journey" to bake/make something weekly (which may turn into/include activities beyond baking).  Ideally, it will go of without a hitch, when the other boys are napping and we can package half of it up and send it off to brighten another's day.  More than likely, we'll skip weeks here and there, bomb a few recipes and have a giant mess in the process, ending the "journey" in February.  

But, such is life, and I wouldn't want to experience it with anyone else.  Pray for us...for the grace to find the beauty in the everyday...for the ability to not compare to what other families are or are not spend more time relishing in relationships rather than completing a to-do bring joy to the lives of others and to give thanks for these precious moments creating Our Everyday.

Volume One: Gingerbread Biscotti (adapted from here).


  1. What.Tiffany.Said.


    (Sorry, Tiff. You just got hundred-upped.)

  2. Wonderful to read about this Britt. Your sister Rozann led me here, and I very much appreciated reading about your thoughts and experience with Carter. It's true that what our children want most of all is us. Thank you for sharing and for encouraging all of us to see more clearly the great work that happens throughout the day in our homes.

    You might also appreciate reading this:

    All the best,

    1. Thank you so much, Jarick. My sister and I are blessed with parents who did the same for us, and I have to remind myself daily that it is the most important thing.

      I have so enjoyed your magazine - a true blessing it has been. Thank you and your team for making it available to us! I hope you see the fruits of your labor daily.

      What a beautiful piece you attached!

  3. Brit, this is exactly what I needed to hear tonight. I am sure our two households are very much alike, although miles apart. I have undertaken "homeschooling" the boys by taking them out of preschool and am just trying to get a rhythm to our day. After a failed attempt to make homemade chocolate pudding tonight with the boys (about 5 time outs and pouring ingredients onto the floor), we managed to finish our pudding. We then sat at the table to listen to a Bible story read by Dad. The boys eyes "lit-up" to their father's rendition of Jonah. It almost made me forget the sugar on the floor, crayon marks on the walls, and exhaustion I felt from the new baby napping upstairs. This is "family" in all of its raw glory.-- Sheryl O'Neal

    1. Sheryl, you are amazing!! I love your family and all you do to remind me of what we are here for. I'm going to be asking for advice on homeschooling in the near future. It intimidates me yet really excites me too. God bless you guys!

  4. I love this so much. And I love you. And I love all your boys. :)

  5. You are such a good momma. I hope your boys come back to this one day and see how loved they were before they even knew it. Praying for patience for you :) much love.