Karen Stott » | Sharing my mess, my hope & my journey cultivating an Intentional Home

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A little piece of my heart wrapped up in pretty paper…

I’ve received a lot of questions about these little beauties in the last few days and I’m just so blessed. Thank you for taking interest in this little love of mine. I had the chance to use mine for the first time today and I’m even more smitten than I thought I would be. After building my day right starting with Gods word and thanksgiving I was reminded of what was really important and my to do list was paused for a few hours. However since I only write down what is achievable for the day it didn’t throw me off course or make me feel unproductive. I actually felt even more productive because it helped keep me accountable to what really matters.

So today…. My favorite little space is the Intentional Moment space. Because it caused me to pause. To slow down. And to create for me the days I dream of living. Days full of intentional love. Sewing into people’s love languages and carving out a life that honors God and grows what He’s given me.

This summer Ava and I spent weeks collecting thrift store finds, painting old frames and picking flowers roadside for her very own wall gallery in her room. She did all the shopping and choosing and we styled the wall together all over her floor before putting it up.  The focal point is an old window that she repainted and now uses for a dry erase board.  She writes new things on it every few days and whenever I notice one I take a photo so I can remember.  I

I feel like one of our greatest callings as parents is to cultivate the God given gifts of our little ones.  It’s also one of the greatest challenges.  I mean, what mama out there doesn’t have a complete life dreamed up for their baby the second they see that pink stipe on the test?  I know for me I had dreams of Ava taking over our photography business… being my besty and wanting to be a stay at home/work at home Mama just like me.  But God has different plans for this beauty of mine.  He gave her bigger things.  Not that what I’m doing isn’t big.  Just different.

She dreams of Africa, and living in New york city, and raising money to help orphans.  She doesn’t want to have her own babies because she wants to adopt hers.  This makes total sense if you knew her as a teeny girl.  She doesn’t really have a nurturing bone in her body.  And no matter how much money I spend on Corelle dolls and ALL the accessories… she preferred cooking on her little kitchen… and watching Rachael Ray… At 3 years old.  She’s feisty and opinionated and organized.  Her room is perfectly tidy and she makes lists for everything.  She’s such a beautiful mix of her daddy’s A-type and my big dreamer and I can’t wait to see what God does in her life.

I know that art is right up her alley.  I know she loves design and making things pretty… that’s totally my half of her.  She’s at that age where she wants to transform her room from little girl.. to little grown up and I kinda think it’s the sweetest thing ever.   And I think as parents we can stifle their uniqueness or cultivate it.  I choose the latter.  Like I said.. it’s hard.. and intentional.. but it’s so worth it.

This summer Ava and I spent weeks collecting thrift store finds, painting old frames and picking flowers roadside for her very own wall gallery in her room. She did all the shopping and choosing and we styled the wall together all over her floor before putting it up. The focal point is an old window that she repainted and now uses for a dry erase board. She writes new things on it every few days and whenever I notice one I take a photo so I can remember. I’m so blessed that these are the thoughts that fill her little heart and mind. You are exactly right baby. And YOU are my specialist gift.

Good morning sweet friends.  I have to admit I

Good morning sweet friends. I have to admit I’m in a season of fighting for what’s mine. And I wanted to encourage anyone else in the same spot as me today. Look around. Give thanks. Gratitude grows a heart of joy. There are so many little blessings each and every day. We just have to stop and acknowledge them.

I’m not where I wish I was right now. My heart is aching and heavy and I wish I had some glittery red shoes to click together and take us to a new season. But that’s just not how it goes.

We are here. And we are blessed.

Instead of wishing it all away I need to soak it all in. And pray my little heart out. I need to fight for this joy I know is mine. And when sadness comes I need to fight again. When I feel like I’m not where I want to be I need to know that God has me right where I’m supposed to be. And I need to trust that. Instead of praying that circumstances change, I need to pray that even if they don’t, my heart will. Because I can’t keep my head in the clouds forever.

At some point I’ve got to come down. Realize things might never change. And instead, steward what I have the best that I can. I’m sure at first Joseph thought he would be freed from slavery. That his brothers might come for him. That he might be free. But there had to come a day when he realized that wasn’t going to happen. And that God was the only one to change his situation. He couldn’t fix it on his own. Or complain his way out. Or convince anyone else to change his course.

So he did the best that he could with where he was. And he prayed. And he trusted God the father. And sometimes, that’s all we are supposed to do too.

7 years ago I held this adorable happy free incredible bouncing boy in my arms.  He was the easy one.  I prayed for it and God had answered my cry.  I finally had an easy baby and I thanked God every day for it.  About a week before his second birthday everything changed… he started hitting his head against the crib, fingerpainting with diaper discoveries and breaking every baby gate we would set up for his safety.  At 18 months I found him about 1 feet in the air climbing up the outside rails of our staircase… and I realized I’ve got a little boundary pusher on my hands.

Fast forward to today and it hasn’t changed… just gotten more complicated.  The head banging against the crib has evolved into outbursts in school, sports, home… you name it.  We now have a very bright, very compassionate, and very… well.. fiery 2nd grader.  And my mama heart hurts at the things we are facing.  Things I never thought would be my battle.  Somehow he manages to attract all of “those” kids no matter which school, teacher or class he’s in.   No matter how much we remind him that it’s the second kid that gets in trouble he continues to react instead of holding it together.  He finishes his work before everyone else and then decides it’s up to him to keep the rest of the class entertained.  He’s quite the gifted little entertainer… but we are working on the proper places to display those talents.

I remember the first phone call home in pre-school… Mrs. Stott.. we have your son in the office.  He’s hit another kid.  My heart sunk.  How can this be real?  How can this be my kid?  And then all of the fears… what am I doing wrong?  what will people think? will he ever have friends?  It’s been like gnawing termites at my soul these last 4 years.  And nothing seems to change it.   We’ve read parenting books and blogs and gone through tests online to see if there’s something behaviorally going on and I’m at a loss.  About a month ago we decided to start seeing a family counselor and that has been so life giving.  She is working with him on his reactions and outcomes and we’ve seen so much progress.  But that’s only one day a week.   What about the rest?  What about the 35 hours a week he’s in school?  We are in a private school system where they don’t have counselors or behavioral aids and I feel like my hands are tied.  We want him to have a faith based education… but what if that education doesn’t offer what he needs?  There are just so many questions.  So many angles.  So many what if’s?  And my heart is tired.

What’s the best option?  Will it ever get better?  Will we ever have a week where he’s not in the principle’s office?  Or there’s not an outburst of some proportion? What is going on in his little heart?  Did we do something wrong?  What will this look like long term?

I honestly don’t know.  And I’m really scared about it.

My hope in writing this wasn’t to expose our junk all over the internet… and if you think that… then go read someone else’s blog.  F’reals.  My hope is that I will find that I’m not alone.  Because that seems to be the theme when I just get real with myself and what we are going through.   I just want to know that I’m not crazy… ya know?  That there is hope for us. That maybe someone out there has been in my shoes… has cried these tears and wondered what the heck to do…  and has maybe seen the other side.  If that’s you.. please reach out.  Leave a comment or contact me.  I’d love to get to know you.

I feel like lately one of the things I get asked the most is ...how do I know? How can I be sure? How can I hear what God is really saying? And sometimes I just want to take my hands... Grab my dear sisters face and say... You

I feel like lately one of the things I get asked the most is …how do I know? How can I be sure? How can I hear what God is really saying? And sometimes I just want to take my hands… Grab my dear sisters face and say… You’re never gonna be sure. You’re never gonna know everything before you jump. You just have to know HIM! And if you know HIM, the path will make itself known

FAITH is the substance of things hoped for… The evidence of things NOT seen. If we saw everything we needed before we took the step. If we knew everything… It wouldn’t be faith.

I LOVED Mark Batterson’s words this morning in #drawthecircle “so how do we hear the voice of God? The FIRST thing to do is open your Bible. When you open your bible, you open Gods mouth. The surest way to get a word from the Lord is by getting into Gods word. God WILL speak to you. Then God will speak through you.”

This hit me so hard because we Christians… And especially we Americans can want everything labeled, secured, and handed to us in a nicely packaged box. But God doesn’t work like that. He has answers for you. He has directions for you. If He didn’t have a next step for your life. A purpose for your days or something He wanted you to do, you wouldn’t be here. It’s that simple.

So if you’re wondering what He has for you. What your next step is… Why you’re so confused… Or distracted … Or fearful… stop turning everywhere else and turn to Him. Stop asking everyone else’s opinions and reading all the other books, ask HIM… Read HIS book. Because when the crap hits the fan in whatever step you take, you’ve GOT to know it was His voice calling. And that will give you strength to keep going. If you’re listening to other voices and you leap off of that, you’re setting yourself up for some heartache and division in that relationship.

Seek Him friends. Faith comes by hearing… And hearing comes by the WORD of God. If you need a place to start, #pursuit31reads on instagram is in Romans all this month. No plan… No set amount of verses or time. Just open it up. Start anywhere. Just read something. And He will speak.

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up. 1 Thessalonians 5:11•Trying to take every possible moment to sow life and hope and faith and trust into these wee lives God has entrusted to me.  So these little buggers are stowing away in their lunch boxes for a mid day pick me up•What are some ways you all use to love on your littles intentionally? Would love some new ideas!!! •#Intentionalhomeproject

 

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up. 1 Thessalonians 5:11•

Trying to take every possible moment to sow life and hope and faith and trust into these wee lives God has entrusted to me. So these little buggers are stowing away in their lunch boxes for a mid day pick me up.  Mothering is hard… and exhausting… and as much as I feel like I’m losing myself I have to remember that I have such a short time.. such a short time to impart.. and sow… and help mold these tiny people.  My daughter is almost ten… her time at home is more than halfway over… and my heart breaks a little on the inside when I think about that.  I just found her ultrasound photo the other day.. and I remember how crazy it felt to see her heart beat for the first time. To know that I was finally going to be a mom.  And here she is planning her business and ruling the world.  She’s such a world changer that one.  And I need to intentionally remember to sow into that. To speak life.  To encourage.  To remember that they will become what we speak into them.

She is a world changer…

A dreamer..

A leader..

A problem solver…

She has a kind heart..

A giving heart..

She looks out for those around her…

She nurtures..

And loves..

And protects..

She is bold..

And stands up for those that aren’t…

She’s a watchman

And an advocate..

And an abolitionist…

Watch out world…

This is a bit new for me on this feed.  I haven

This is a bit new for me on this feed. I don’t post many photos of me here lately.  And honestly, it’s because nothing lately has felt quite true. After having our last baby in December I haven’t felt myself. I’m beyond exhausted, kinda grumpy at times, I cry, lots. I love him beyond words but it has quickly taken me back to when the bigger kids were babies and I just lost myself to the busy. I didn’t feel myself anymore. Am I the only one who’s felt that way?

Like who is this yoga pants, messy bun, pizza for dinner lady? This isn’t me? I mean it’s a version of me, in this season, but I love cute outfits and curling my hair and setting beautiful tables with home cooked food. And that… Well, that just doesn’t happen much. Cute outfits get sticky hands all over them and if I wear my hair down it becomes his favorite toy. I love these simple stay at home mama days. More than anything. But this last week with the Pursuit Conference ladies was like water to my dry bones. I felt like me again. The me beneath the mommy hat. And my heart is so overwhelmed with all the good things that I just had to share this pic with you. Because I see me again. And I feel it too.

Growing up I felt like I had to abandon all of my passions and things that fire me up when I became a mom. That once those little ones came it had to be all about them. Over the last decade of navigating motherhood I’ve realized that’s not the case at all. That these little ones need to see us full of passion. They need to see us pursuing Jesus wholeheartedly and using the gifts He’s given us. They need to see us be brave and get dressed up. They need to see us take time for ourselves, get in the Word, go on a retreat, have a girls night. Because we need to be full and overflowing Jesus to them. And ladies… That’s just plain tough when it’s all about the wee ones all the time. When we take time to recharge and get filled up we are better mothers, wives, daughters and friends. And that took me a long time to figure out•So I just wanted to share this pic with you all today. Because I felt alive. And I want the same for you

Bag by @lilyjadeco photo by @tiffanylfarley