On Chalk, Unexpected Compliments, and Exercise

Blog Pause Day 6:  This is it!  The final day of 2013!  We're reviewing three additional posts from the Pink Dryer Lint archives today.  We start with a look back to summer with a humorous take on a summer parenting staple: outdoor sidewalk chalk.  Then, we move to a post that I had forgotten about, one that reminds us that a kind word can carry more weight than we even realize.  Finally, we wrap up with some motivation to be good to ourselves by exercising.  (Something I often need to remind myself!)

Enjoy, and here's to a great New Year!

To Humor You: On Chalk: A Dissertation (minus the research)

Even as an adult, I find myself oddly drawn to chalk.  For example, I once brainstormed other occupations that I could see myself doing besides writing and teaching college students.  Among them: professional closet organizer, namer of paint or nail polish colors, and person who transcribes the daily specials on the chalkboard in restaurants.

See?  Chalk not only permeates the landscape of my childhood memories, but also appears in my career aspirations. 

Continue reading "On Chalk: A Dissertation (minus the research)"

To Remind Us to Pay It Forward: The Unexpected Compliment

Last week, someone paid me an unexpected compliment.  We sat across a desk from one another, immersed in reviewing a paper.  Out of the blue, she zinged me with such kind words that I stopped momentarily.  I silently took them in, turning them over in my head and committing them to memory so I'd be able to remind myself of them later.

Her words were that good.  Simple, quick, and exactly what I needed to hear.  I hadn't even known that I needed them.

Perhaps the key to anyone's heart -- woman or man, child or adult -- is encouragement.  It's life-giving.  It's why I've kept cards from friends, notes from students, and pictures that my kids have drawn tucked away in a shoe box or my desk drawer.  On the days when I'm doing a terrible job, those tangibles show me that all hope is not lost.

Continue reading "The Unexpected Compliment"

To Get Motivated: Exercising With Kids, In Spite of Kids

The most frequently-recurring thought I have while exercising is that I really need to vacuum.  Distractions abound when you're doing push-ups on your family room floor but noticing the ground-in Goldfish cracker crumbs and the balled-up socks that were abandoned by a child and stuffed underneath the couch.

While I'd love to think that devoting time to exercise would provide tranquil moments, it's not entirely true.  I exercise at home, with three kids, and it looks very little like this:

and much more often like this:

I'm not especially coordinated.  I'm not exceptionally fast.  I'm not overwhelmingly skilled at any one athletic endeavor.  But, I am a proponent of living an active lifestyle and making time to exercise regularly.  This is because I've had many seasons when I haven't exercised regularly.  When life gets uncomfortably busy, I've unwisely skimped on sleep and cut out exercise -- ironically, the very things that make me more productive and balanced.

Continue reading "Exercising With Kids, In Spite of Kids"

Whether 2013 has been full of wonders or hardships, my prayer is that you will abide in the peace that surpasses all understanding in 2014, knowing how deeply God loves you. 

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  1. I have loved this (and I enjoyed the format of 3 posts a day). I may have to do this sometime when I need a blog break. Genius!

    I loved revisiting old posts and there were some that I hadn't read yet as I think we connected more shortly before the summer.

    Wishing you many blessings in 2014. Your blogging friendship means so much to me and I look forward to another year of getting to know you better.

  2. Jennifer, I feel the same! Thank you for your sweet and encouraging comments and your friendship!
    At the end of each year I've done a "blog pause" where I've repurposed my favorite posts between Christmas and New Years, but I've only ever posted one per day. This three-posts-per-day format was new! Glad to hear that you liked it! :)


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