Friday, March 9, 2012

What I have learned… {The Middle}

I had every intention of posting this yesterday.  Then I got a phone call asking if we could show our house?  I was totally shocked, our house had been listed on the MLS for only 10 hours.  I promptly got up from my computer and did a little straightening.  I have a feeling that this is my new life.  My hours are no longer my own.  They are the home buyers.  Anyway… here it is…

What I have learned… one day late.

{The Middle}

The reason I started posting what I have learned is because I have so many people in my life that touch me for good.  I like to remember those things and be able to reflect on them. 

This past year, I have been in a sort of funk.  I have had a really hard time trying to figure out just what has affected me.  I think it has been a combination of many things. 

Just recently, I realized that part of my problem is that I have been living for what is coming next. I heard myself telling my mind, “just get through this, and then you get to do this.” I have not been enjoying my time just being mom and wife.  I am always looking forward to whatever big thing might be happening on the weekend, or what trip we might take next.

It all started when we found out in the fall of 2011 that we would be moving to PA this summer.  I started thinking about that change and thinking and thinking about it.  I would say to myself over and over, “just one more year; and then we will move back to Utah.”

I have been living for the Utah.  I have been dreaming about what my life will be like in Utah.  I have pictured being able to ask my mom to run over and help me with the kids.  I have imagined spending Sunday’s at my parents.  I have thought about lunches with my sisters, and play-dates with cousins.

While all that dreaming was going on, I forgot to enjoy the Sunday’s in my own home.  I forgot to stop and just be with my husband while we were paying for a babysitter. I missed out on lunches and play-dates with out AR friends. My thoughts have been consumed with what would come next.

My thoughts have also been consumed with our move, making sure our house would be ready to sell, packing it all up, and finding somewhere to live.

I am so thankful that I realized this.  I can only imagine how my days would be in PA; how miserable would I have been.

  I have always been one to “enjoy the journey.” In fact, that was my life’s theme while we lived on the island of Saba.  How come I forgot to enjoy the journey now?  I think I just lost site of what was really important.

I don’t want to waste away the time we have left here, and heaven forbid miss the experiences that happen in Pennsylvania.

My best friend recently shared this post about her families theme for the year.  I had that on my mind one day while I was driving around.  I happened to be listening to my new favorite album, “Wildflower”, by Lauren Alaina.  A song called “The Middle” came on, and I began to really listen to the words.(check out the link I shared, it really is a cute montage that someone put together.) 

As I was listening, I thought to myself this should be my theme for the year.  So just like the Moes family has a theme for the year, I decided that I needed my own theme for the year.  A little reminder to myself of what matters most in life. A reminder to live for each day.

My favorite part of the song says:

The day your born is just a start.

Your last breath is a question mark.

The story of your life is in the in between.


While I was driving around in the car, I had this a-ha moment. 

I am in the in between.

I am in between everything.  I am in between houses, and states to live in.  I am in between doctors, dentists, and new places to eat.  Nothing ever stays the same.  It is time to start enjoying the in between, and living out my story.

The song actually told me how to live.  It says:

Take each day and make it last

Because you turn around and the future is the past

Here and now is all we have

The beginning and the end mean so little

What matters most is what’s in the middle.

The Middle-2

What’s in the middle for me?:

dinner with my family

dancing in the kitchen

tickle fights

movies with my husband

and finding the joy in all the little things I do to keep our home and family running.

Over the past month, I have put this plan in to action.  I have watched my life change.  I have felt true joy and happiness.  I feel the urge to laugh almost all day.  We are meant to find joy in this life.

As you can see I made a new printable.

The middle 2

I put them out in a frame so I am reminded of just how important it is to live in the middle.


I placed them next to this picture of our family laughing, giggling, and tickling together.  Exactly what “the middle” means to me.


You can print your own also.  Find it here.

… and because I know that Yellow doesn’t work for everyone there are six colors to choose from.

Printable sheet

(In between print is 5x7, the middle print is 4x6)

Find the colored prints here.

I have a whole new outlook on life.

The Middle-3

I hope you do too.

What is in the middle for you?

(p.s. take the time to listen to the song, it really is so powerful.)



Davis Family said...

Thank you so much for this post, it is a wonderful reminder for me. I also had been waiting for the time when we would move home to Utah. I spend my whole first year in our new state in tears nearly every day. I learned within the next year or two that i also have to live in the middle. I had to learn to be ok with where i was in my life at the present moment. I still miss my friends and family like crazy. I see commercials of grandkids playing with their grandparents and i cry but i know that we are where we are supposto to be right now and God has shown me that. I love these printable that you have made and am so excited to print them out and have a constant reminder that the middle is exactly where i am supposto be right now and to enjoy every single moment of it! It's nice to know that there are those mom's just like me out there that have struggled with this but are now finding themselves being happy in the right now, the right here and at just the right time.
Thanks so much for this post, it came at just the right time for me.

Candice said...

Wow, what is it with Utah? ;) I've been doing the same thing. We moved from UT to TN about 8 years ago. It's great here, but I've been waiting and thinking I'll be truly happy once we move back to UT. I keep thinking ____ will be better once I'm near my family and ___ will be better too. Like all my trials will just disappear based on my geography??!! Silly girl! I am forgetting to enjoy the journey and the great things we have while living here in TN. Thank for the reminder. I'm going to frame some of your printables to help me remember and keep things in perspective!

Zach + Sara said...

I pinned this on Pinterest because the gray and yellow match my living room and the saying was nice...after coming to your blog and reading the meaning behind why you chose these sayings I am so glad that I read this post! I am originally from Utah and my husband is a marine. We are currently stationed in Japan and have been so focused on what and who are missing. I keep focusing on where we will be next and if only we were back in CA where we were last stationed and if I can just get through this our next duty station will be better...when I really need to sit and enjoy my husband and my little boys while they are still little enough to want to be enjoyed and be grateful that we get to experience living so many different places and embrace each for their uniqueness. I am printing these off and will try to live for the middle. I needed this post to really realize that. Thank you:)

Becky said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. It's hard not to live for "the next stage" sometimes.

I can't believe those pictures of Stella in the post below - Stella has grown up SO much!! Has it really been that long since she was the sweet little toddler next door? She's beautiful!

valerie said...

Love your post Andrea! Very very insightful. I also love the printables and love Lauren Alaina. Did you see her perform on Idol on Thursday night? Anyhow, I have one teeny tiny question? In the first verse, my editorial side got to me and I wondered if the words should read you're instead of your? Just thought I would point this out. Not to find anything negative but at least you know I read the whole post and the lyrics too! Thank you and can't wait to print my own. Hugs

KW said...

Great song and great post. I think we all have the tendency to do that, always looking for what's next. It's good to get in check with ourselves once in awhile and re-evaluate. I hope you have a great adventure in PA, but I will also look forward to the day when we will all FINALLY be in the same state.

Marji Anderson said...

I love the printables, I'm going to have to check out that song.
We need to take advantage of your last few months here, we are all going to miss y'all so much when you leave. I don't' know how Matthew will survive without Isaac!

Hayley said...

Hey Andrea, long time no see. :) I love checking in on your blog-your words and pictures are always lovely and inspiring.

Darlene said...

Look at how many people you inspire! I am so thankful you posted this...I really need to see these displayed in my home on a daily basis. Thanks for the inspiration :o).

Anonymous said...

This is so cute and I love it so much. But one of the words is misspelled! It should be the day YOU'RE born! Just a helpful hint. You don't have to fix it but I thought you might want to know!

Andrea said...

Fixed the typo. Silly me.

sjchunko said...

AHHH! I am in the same boat, except I want to be back in Pa and I'm stuck in Ut! I'm sure our reasons are very similar...My family, my church, my childhood friends, memories, favorite places, etc. I have decided that we will take in all Utah has to offer us. We love the landscape here but found us in a bit of culture shock - think of a Lancaster County Mennonite living in SLC. I'm sure you get the picture - like a fish out of water.

We move every few years for my hubby's job so we have to make new friends, find a new church, new schools for the kids, new docs, etc. all the time. I keep looking forward to the time where we can live somewhere without the dread of having to do it all over again - to be someplace more permanent. My fear is the same as yours, that by looking ahead to what's next, I miss out on the reasons I am here in the first place.

We have made a "bucket list" with all the things we want to do here in Utah before we move back east again. Creating the list has kept us in the present - making sure we do the things we want to do while we're here. There is so much to appreciate in each place we've lived (7 addresses in 16 yrs) and we don't want to take any of it for granted. It's easy to be homesick when you're 2500 miles from 'home' but each place is what you make of it.

Thanks for sharing the printables. There will be one in my house now to remind me! Best of luck to you!

Krysta said...

I love your family theme. It is perfect for you!! You are so good about listening to lyrics in songs. The wheels are always turning in your mind and you learn something new because of it. I love knowing what is going on in that mind of yours. :)

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