10 Things I Learned In July

Goodbye summer, hello new school and work rhythms for our kids! I can’t believe July is finished.

At the end of each month, I share things I learned. This habit helps me pay attention to life, myself, and God’s presence. It’s my way of reflecting and celebrating. In no particular order, here are 10 things I learned this month.

1. A day at the beach is so good for our family. 

It’s a lot of work to get all the kids and beach stuff out to the beach, but when we do, it is worth it. We’ve been enjoying paddle boarding and boogie boarding together. 

2. I want to let go of worrying about what I’m not doing.

Do you struggle with guilt or anxiety over things you could be doing better or goals you’re not reaching? I do this all the time. I’m trying to embrace the antidotes to these worries – contentment, gratefulness, and being present. 

3. Two-headed snakes exist in real life.

Our housemate, Ryland, mentioned this bit of information one night at dinner. Apparently it’s a rare mutation in the snake world. Welcome to my new fear, people.

4. Always thaw frozen meat in a dish.

I know this kitchen rule, but sometimes I listen to the inner fool that says, “Just toss the packaged meat into the fridge…it won’t leak this time.” Alas, it always leaks, and I always have gross meat juices to clean up.

5. Tequila reconciliation can solve a lot of conflicts.

My friend Victoria introduced me to this idea of hers – if you have a problem or conflict with someone, reconcile with him or her over a few shots of tequila. Forgiveness and grace flow nicely with the warmth of Tequila Reposado.

6. One of our neighbors spreads love through avocados. 

Someone mysteriously placed several large avocados in our mailbox the other day. What a fun surprise amidst all the junk mail!

7. Sometimes you blink, and your child is now a capable 1st grader who can swim, read, and do many things without your help.

Seeing Aaron grow older is a reminder to me to savor the present moment with my kids while it lasts.

8. There are two types of problems: solvable problems and unsolvable problems. 

The first type can be resolved; work toward a solution. The second type can’t be resolved; own it and manage it. I have found this principle to be particularly helpful as I consider how to navigate people and relationships.

9. The one household chore that I cannot skip is vacuuming. 

Our family is constantly generating crumbs, dirt, and hairballs on the carpet. A good vacuum is a wise investment for a family with young kids. 

10. I’m still learning how to love people with my unique gifts, personality, and presence.

I believe we each have qualities that affect other people around us, for better or for worse. It is the maturing person who is aware of how their presence influences their surroundings, and is able to develop ways of being a life-giving blessing to people. For years, people have told me that I bring stability and consistency. My initial reaction to hearing this was, “How boring!” It has taken me a long time to discover how and why that quality in me can be a gift to people. 

3 thoughts on “10 Things I Learned In July

  1. I can totally relate to #2 and wish I had a neighbor like #6. It is a blessing that you are a friend that is stable and consistent. What a gift in this changing world. Praying this morning that God will continue to use you and your unique gifts, personality, and presence.


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