Friday, October 12, 2012

A Friendly Reminder

Live in the moment.

This is one of the most poignant lessons I took away from my mother's sudden death a year and a half ago.  You don't know what tomorrow will bring, or next month, or next year. Only the Lord knows the number of days you have on this earth.  

I'm keenly aware of the fact that life is fragile, and I fully intend to soak it up every day that I'm here. I want to make as many wonderful memories as I can. When my girls ask me to skip through the Walmart parking lot with them,  this mama not only skips with abandon, but sings along too. Sometimes we rock out in the truck with Carly Rae Jepson's "Call Me Maybe" blaring through the speakers despite protests from my husband and interrogation as to why a 34 year old woman has that song on her iPod.  "I bought it for the girls!", I say as I bop my head back and forth and mouth the words "here's my number, so call me maybe!" with my thumb and pinky extended out like a telephone.

Wait, did I just type that on my blog? Forget you ever read that confession.

Sometimes I make pancakes covered in strawberries for my son, with whipped cream stacked so high that it teeters on the plate. We drink hot chocolate for no special occasion. I burn scented candles every day so the house smells nice for my husband when he walks in the door. Sometimes I take my horse for a ride on a Tuesday evening for no particular reason other than to breathe in the crisp autumn air.  

In the past year, we've driven more back roads, taken more spontaneous trips, and had more impromptu get- togethers than in all the years I can remember.  

 I love it.

I used to be really far-sighted, always planning for the future, always talking about the future, and saving for the future.  There is something wonderful about the possibility that the future holds, but don't grip so tightly onto tomorrow's dreams that you don't make room for today.

We've scrimped and sacrificed so we can afford to take a trip to watch the National Finals Rodeo this December. It's something we've wanted to see since college but have never gone to because we put it low on the priority list. We can't wait to take that trip! We also got our kids a horse instead of buying more cows this year.  The cows would have definitely made us more money, but a HORSE.... well, that is a memory maker!  Every kid dreams of having a horse of their own.  No kid will remember his parents having a few more cows to add to the herd, a Roth IRA, or bigger Mutual Funds, but they'll always talk about their first horse. The way it looked, the way it smelled, and how it nuzzled them for apple treats. The way it felt to be wild and free on it's back with the wind in their face.  Now THAT is living in the moment!


It's certainly good to save, and plan, and be cautious. I'm not saying to live recklessly. I'm just suggesting that we all leave a little wiggle room for fun in our lives, schedules and budgets.  Don't let those spontaneous moments pass you by. 

-Grab your spouse and twirl them around the kitchen floor every now and then.  

-Have an adventure with your kids that involves over-priced Churros and kettle corn. 

-Surprise your elderly neighbor with a batch of warm cookies for no special reason. 

-Take the long way to get where you're going. 

-Let your girls play "Beauty Salon" with your hair in the evening. 

-Help your son cook the three crawdads he just caught  in the lake even though you'll only get a teaspoon of meat out of them.

-Set that pile of paperwork aside and play ball with the kids.

- Let the dishes sit in the sink after dinner and take a long walk with your family.

Live in the moment today!



  1. Wonderful post!
    My daddy was in a bad wreck yesterday, was rear ended by semi as he was turning off the hwy. Rolled his pickup and trailer, killed both horses, and complety totaled everything. Daddy walked away, and so did the other cowboy that was with. The Lord was watching over them, and it makes you so very grateful for each day we have with our loved ones! I called him this morning and was so grateful to hear his voice.

  2. I am sorry about to hear about your mom....
    I love this post! I definately needed to read this. I will be skipping more now!
    Working from home I get so wrapped up in my "work" and just feel like I can't ever take a break and I know I can but don't. I am going to start because I love to go watch the kids play in their rooms, playing nicely with each other or playing by themselves, talking to themselves. It warms my heart so much!
    You guys will have so much fun at the NFR. I went a few times in High School w/my parents and then Hubby and I went in 2003. I love love love it. You will be able to see my cousin barrel race, she is going into the NFR #4 in the world (her dad and my dad are brothers)....
    Did you guys get a new horse or is it the same one? I think spontaneous trips are great also. A few months ago we took the kids to a hotel in SL so they could go swimming for the night. It was close to home so we didn't need help w/chores, cheap and the kids had a blast!
    Thanks for sharing :) XO

  3. I love this post, friend. :)
    So often we take things for granted, things that are of the most importance... something that I try to work on. :) The simple things really do matter, and to Him they really aren't all that 'simple'.

    It's hard loosing a loved one, and it can happen at the blink of an eye, my Mama hasn't been gone but 9 months, it's still hard.
    We heard from a friend of ours about a women of 40, with young children, who went to sleep and never woke... no goodbyes. But, yet she went peaceful like.
    The good Lord is in complete charge, we must always be ready and willing.

    Enjoyed your post!! :)

  4. Such a great post. Sometimes we have a hard time looking past our own nose. At times we forget that there are hurting people all around. And sometimes those hurting people are your own family and by the time you get the nerve to stop pretending they don't have's too late. So, I wholeheartedly agree. Do what matters, today! And sometimes ya gotta reevaluate what matters on a regular basis, and it's perfectly ok.

  5. Nell, I wept over your post. My heart is with this...

    I have been thinking these thoughts, living these thoughts...sometimes on the tail of mercy or of tragedy, a big lump in your throat sits...but we have to learn from our life lessons.

    Amen and amen.

    Now when are we going to meet and have true life coffee and talk about these things? Maybe someday...:)

    Love to you. You are an inspiration and a gifted writer.