Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Unhurried and Uninterrupted

This past weekend my husband and I got away for an overnight. We left Saturday morning and spent a leisurely day walking around a small historic town, eating a deliciously slow dinner, and watching a movie in bed in the hotel that night. The day felt so serene and I said to Mike, "You know why today is so nice? We are unhurried and uninterrupted."

It reminded me again at how much a hurried and loud lifestyle can fry the nerves and cause an almost perpetual sense of edginess. When life gets quiet, then I can unfortunately "hurry" to try to enjoy it because I know it will get loud and demanding very soon. When life feels slower, then everyone's creativity comes alive, but with that "life" everyone here gets excited and loud and wants everyone else to see what they have just created. So to find a place that is unhurried AND uninterrupted feels like a bit of heaven to my reflective soul.

Carving out spaces in our lives for slow and quiet is so important. We don't even realize how starved we are for that until we get a small taste. Mike and I said at the end of day, "boy, we need a vacation!" Regular time of quiet is needed no matter how small, but we also need times of quiet to not be rushed or to be mindful of the clock or to have the to-do list trying to push its way to the front of our minds.

As we enter the holiday season, let's try to find some unhurried and uninterrupted time...starting with Jesus. Maybe a prayer walk for a few hours in a local garden or unhindered journaling and reading. Unhurried and uninterrupted time with our spouse...maybe a full day away from the kids to shop or sit in a coffee shop or a local tour. Or unhurried and uninterrupted time with a good friend...catching up, crafting, a long lunch and movie. And unhurried and uninterrupted time with myself gives me a deep sense of renewal...journaling, reading, thinking, creating all reignite a personal fire within.

Get a babysitter. Turn off the cell phones and gadgets. Disappear for a while. Breathe. Reflect. Refocus. Move slowly. Take your time. Be at rest. Receive His rest. And have fun.

photo by mcwy


Natasa said...

good advice...

kelli said...

I love this post! Such a good reminder to live what is real and true in, what our world makes, such a chaotic time!

Beautiful, Aimee! Thanks for sharing!

(I love that you and your hubby went away for the weekend!!!! I can't wait to do that soon!)

Ali said...

How do you plan and prepare Christmas gifts for your kids? Do you and your husband surprise your kids or do they make special requests for Christmas gifts? Do you have a certain type or number of gifts per child? Just looking for ideas to keep Christmas special, memorable, Christ-centered, and peaceful! You are ahead of me on the Mommy road my oldest son just turned 5 a few days ago and my daughter turned 2 in October and I have baby boy # 3 arriving in April 2009. Thanks for any tips you have time to share!

Also, I loved your post! I'm feeling rushed and behind these days and it is not becoming on me! I think I need to plan some unhurried time with my husband soon!

~ Ali

Aimee said...

Hey there! We always buy each of our children 3 Christmas gifts that represent body, soul, and spirit. The "body" gift is either clothes, a watch, scarves/mittens, etc. The "soul" gift is something that they have really wanted. For two of the kids they will get bikes this year. The "spirit" gift is something to encourage them in their relationship with Jesus...a Bible, a CD, journaling gear, a good book, etc. They know that these are the things that we give each year. We also stuff their stockings with fun stuff...art supplies, hair things, small wooden toys, a new DVD, etc. And the night before Christmas they always open a new pair of PJ's to be worn that night.

Keeping the gifts to a certain number and variety has really kept it simple and thoughtful for us. And b/c they have been inundated with lots of extra toys over the years, they don't expect that on Christmas morning.

I also try to keep the WHOLE season memorable by lots of crafting and homemade decorating with them....we take a yearly drive to see all the lights and then go to Krispie Kreme...we go to a Christmas Eve candlelight service...I keep baskets of Christmas books laying around and we always buy a new Christmas CD each year and listen to all of them all the time. We do a daily advent calendar and this year we will serve with Meals on Wheels to teach them about giving to others.

So I really try to involve them in the whole season instead of making it all about one day.

Thanks for commenting and HAVE FUN! :)

Aimee said...

I meant that they HAVEN'T been inundated with toys for years :)

Anna said...

What a wonderful reminder. Thanks! Will you e-mail me at peytonsmom123 @ netzero.net ? I have a question for you.

Mrs. Pivec said...

Wonderful advice as usual, Aimee. Especially for this time of year.

I grabbed a bit myself this past Saturday morning. I hung out in bed in my jammies and snipped pictures for my journal. I wrote and then I read a bit of a book. I kind of regretted that I'd agreed to a matinee with my mom and the kids, but I knew that would be nice too. What I REALLY want to do is take more Saturday mornings like that one now.

I am also making a concerted effort this year to have a personally reflective Christmas, spending some good and quality time with my Friend, my Lord and King. I am looking forward to it more than ever!

I've passed on an award to you, my friend. Do stop by and pick it up when you get a free moment if you like.

Blessings and Happy Thanksgiving.

Aimee said...

Nicole..."personally reflective" sounds just wonderful!!

Katrina said...

Your weekend sounds just wonderful. I have wanted to do that with my hubby for so long. Thank you for the gentle reminder to quiet and slow down. We so need that, especially for this time of year.

((Hugs and warm smiles to you, too)) You've been so kind.

Hilty Sprouts! said...

I need that so bad that it makes me want to cry! I constantly feel harried and exhausted and when I do get a few precious moments of free time I often feel like I don't know what to do with it because I'm so afraid it will be over soon and there are so many things that I "should" be doing. My husband and I definitely need a day away! We have never been on a "real" vacation during the 15 years we have been married. I think it's about time!

Aimee said...

Jen, YES y'all NEED a vacation together! Even just a night or two! Do you have any family or friends at church that you could ask to watch your kids? Swap with them? Y'all are long overdue :)

And this post reminds me of the book "Margin" which I love...a must read for everybody!!

Hill upon Hill said...

Wonderful. I have learnt as our family has grown that I do not cope well with juggling many things at one time or being interrupted. Yes it is important to have these slow moments in daily life, not just in a long overdue holiday (vacation).

Erin said...

Girl, Chris is working tomorrow and Caleb and Tyler are going caving in the mountains with friends. I'll have about 10 hours to myself...joy!

Susan L said...

I love this post, Aimee! The whole thing was just nice to read, and your last paragraph gave some great tips for making it actually happen. :-)