Job changes, over-corrections, and cashew milk.

It's been another big week at the Giraffe Household. Job change announcements, post-vacation overcorrections, homemade pantry staples - you'd be hard-pressed to find a more exciting domicile.

First off, the job announcement. This week the official announcement was made that I've accepted a new position as a program/outreach director for an outdoor ministry organization based here in town. It means I'll be ending my tenure as a youth minister in a congregation at the end of this month. I've been working in a church for twelve years - my entire "adult" life, post-college. I'm looking forward to seeing what life is like as a civilian - I mean, "regular church member." 

Read More

When you're just not feeling Mother's Day.

Friends, it has been a long week. Our little giraffe trio just returned from a week in South Lake Tahoe. I'd call it a "vacation," but as any parents of young children know, any trip with small kids is not a vacation at all. It was wonderful, but also EXHAUSTING. Traveling with a toddler is like babysitting your own child. Our 6 days of nonstop togetherness reminded me in no uncertain terms why I am not a stay-at-home mom.

And while it was wonderful and soul-filling to be with family--and to be in the most beautiful place on earth--a lot of the time I found myself in a big funk. You see, Mother's Day was approaching and I just wasn't feeling it. Here's my truth: I wasn't feeling all that excited about being a mother. Instead, I felt a lot of other things.

Read More

Why am I here?

Two of my favorite writers and truth-tellers in the history of the universe did a podcast together last month. If it's old news to you, bear with me here, but I just listened to it today. Glennon and Rob, people. GLENNON AND ROB. 

Glennon Doyle Melton, of Momastery, and Rob Bell, of, well, Rob Bell. 

These people speak to my soul, to the very deepest parts of who I am, to the parts that are dying for oxygen, to the me I am desperate to be but not quite sure how to do it. These two people speak their truths and suddenly I feel true. All of me. Their words give me breath.

That all probably sounds pretty weird, but I'm not sure how else to communicate just how meaningful these people are. Anyway.

In this podcast Glennon talked about how she became a truth-teller. She was always a truth-teller, especially through her addiction - it was the addiction that was telling her truth when her words couldn't. And one day she decided to speak truth with words so that her addiction wouldn't have to. That struck me as so freaking ON POINT I actually said "YES!" out loud in my car. 

Read More

Real moms never confess. (What the what?!)

There's this trend out there on social media, and maybe you've seen it. "Real mom confessions." I admit (but won't confess) that I have read and have enjoyed these posts and comments on occasion. But there's this feeling in my gut that settled there awhile back and hasn't gone away. In fact, it grows every time I read these "confessions," and now I can't read any of them without feeling really angry. Here's why.

Read More

Hello from the other side.

Hello! It's me! I'm in California dreaming of the way things used to be.

Just kidding. That's Adele. 

I'm in Wisconsin dreaming of warmer weather. I'm actually skipping out on a 10K this morning because the weather forecast says "100% chance of snow" at race time and it's like 30 degrees. Nope. I'm a wimp. To put my wimpiness in perspective, a good friend of mine just returned home in the wee hours of this morning from a 10-day mission trip in the Dominican Republic and is using my bib to run in the race today. So, yeah. Pretty wimpy. I care not. (I told her I still want my shirt, though.) 

Anyway. April 2. My last post was January 1. What on God's green earth have I been doing these past four months, right? So many things... and not so many things. My absence has not been because I have been too busy. I've just been busy being...

Read More

500 in 2016

After my TomTom watch told me I had achieved running 100 miles in 2015 I felt, well, mixed emotions. Proud that I had done at least that, and motivated to do a few more in the year to come. Because a goal of 10 miles a week isn't that intimidating. 3-4 runs of 2-3 miles each? I can do that. There will be some weeks when I don't, and some weeks when I do more. 

Right now I don't know what I'm more excited about, though. The goal itself, the record-keeping, or the super-cool image I made for it. 

We'll see how this plays out. It's one new year's resolution I'm alright with making, because the point isn't really for me to hit 500 miles. It's to make running a regular part of my life again. Getting even halfway to 500 will be over a 100% improvement from last year for me. Hitting 500 will be amazing. 

Ah, running. It's not really about the destination. Who ever starts a run and thinks to themselves, "I'm just so excited to be at the END"? Well, maybe we do sometimes. But more often it's about the run. It's about the journey. The act of doing, of being. That's what this goal is all about. Just trying. 

Who knows where I'll end up!


Welcome to the world, 2016!

If you remember from last year, I don't make new year resolutions. 

I think resolutions often become just another thing to feel guilty about. It's dangerous to say "this year I will do this, always, and I will not fail." Maybe, but more likely you will fail sometimes. I see people make resolutions and then a few months, or weeks, or days, later break down and give up. And because they faltered once, they might as well throw in the towel on the whole thing. Resolution dissolved. 

From my point of view, it's more helpful to say, "This is what I am going to work on this year, and sometimes I'll nail it, other times I'll miss the mark, but I am a work in progress, and everything will be okay." With that in mind, I've taken a look back on those "things I'd like to work on" from January 1st of last year...

Read More

Being busy, being present.

I've noticed something about myself recently: I have a hard time sitting still. 

It's not just that I can't physically be still, although I do tend to shake my legs or tap my fingers when stationary. It's that I have a hard time not doing something.

This weekend was a busy one, but there was an hour or so when O was napping and there was a break in the to-do list. It's not that there weren't more things on the list - there were many. But I sat down for a moment on our couch and thought, My God, this feels amazing. I just want to do this.

This: just simply sitting down. Doing nothing.

I never do that...

Read More