Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"Encouraging Moments" is a Keeper

 The story begins at our church Valentine’s Dinner... 

After enjoying a nice catered meal, several couples in the church were chosen to play the “newlywed” game (even though the majority of them had been married for 10 years or more). Since my husband and I had been chosen last year, we knew we were “safe” and looked forward to being in the peanut gallery this time around.

As the questions were asked, David and I would occasionally look at each other and quietly answer the questions amongst ourselves, just to see how accurate we would have been. We were doing pretty good, for the most part, but then it happened - two questions were asked that basically ruined the rest of my night...  
A question for the men: “What class would you be most likely to send your wife to?
  1. driving class
  2. housekeeping class
  3. cooking class
I was immediately thinking David would say “driving class,” seeing as how I am horrible at directions and feel very uncomfortable driving long distances by myself; but, to my surprise, he said “housekeeping class.”

What?! I admit I’m not the BEST housekeeper in the world, especially with 2 kids, 2 cats, and 1 husband to pick up after; not to mention how my time is eaten up with homeschooling, running errands, and planning and cooking meals. Sure, I have a hard time keeping the house dusted, the bathrooms cleaned, and there always seems to be a load of unfolded laundry sitting in the way somewhere. But, really..... it could be MUCH worse! At least my house is organized and I can usually find something if I need it. (Needless to say, I guess I kind of took offense.)

Then, the next question came. I don’t remember the exact wording, but I remember it had something to do with ways the wives irritate the husbands. Because of the answer David gave to the last question, I figured he would say it was the unfolded laundry basket sitting in the hallway. Instead, he air-typed on an imaginary keyboard and mouthed the word, “computer.”

Again came the, “What?!” I admit I am on the computer probably more than I should be. But, golly, why doesn’t he just understand that I NEED the computer. I NEED to write in my journals to help me process things. I NEED to update my blogs. I NEED to do research for therapies and treatments that come up, or for our homeschool curriculum. I NEED to do be online “chatting” with my friends so I don’t feel so alone here at home all the time. This Winter has been terribly hard on me, and I NEED.............  

Oh crap - he’s right! I hate to admit it, but I’m addicted to this stupid computer, and I know it! Yes, all of the things above are true. I DO need to spend time on here to write, research, and stay connected with my friends. However, there also NEEDS to be a balance.  I realiz now that the housework hasn't been getting done - not because I don't have the time to do it, but because I haven't MADE the time to do it. Instead, I've been spending all my time on here. Ugh! Why did he have to be right about this! Now, that means I really NEED to make a change - one that I don’t particularly want to make.

The next day, I listened to my conscience and didn’t spend much time on the computer, but I did take a little time to read an e-mail newsletter called “Encouraging Moments,” by Lorrie Flem. It’s a newsletter geared towards encouraging women in their choice to be wives, mothers, and homemakers; while also challenging us to strive for improvement in the areas we are lacking. A group of us gals (The Gabby Moms), who are reviewing products for Eternal Encouragement Magazine, were put on assignment this month to review this weekly e-newsletter.



Right off the bat, I liked the looks of the newsletter. The colors blended nicely, and the font was appealing. Then, I moved into the content and found that the author was speaking directly to women with a loving and encouraging tone - not with one that condescends. She even spoke directly to me in some instances, or so it seemed.

To quote Lorrie in the February 10th newsletter, she said...
The differences between a successful marriage and an unhappy one are:
  • living life "around" your disagreements
  • taking a "team" attitude toward compromise
  • loving in spite of differences
  • understanding and empathy for your husband's position
  • knowing that quietly talking about differences can strengthen the relationship and improve intimacy
  • knowing that avoiding conflicts doesn't make them go away"
Hmmm.... #2 and #4 really stood out to me as a confirmation that a compromise was in order regarding my computer time. So, from then on, I have made it a goal to try and accomplish at least one or two household chores each day BEFORE spending an allotted amount of time on the computer. That way, chores still get done, and I still get my computer time. Kinda like a reward system.  I am also in the process of weeding out several e-mail subscriptions that take up too much of my time. However, Encouraging Moments will not be one of them, thanks to the positive tone and helpful advice it gives.

For some additional information, the newsletter is laid out in various sections. First, there is a “short and sweet” moment with the author. Then, it moves into information about a “drastic discount,” things that were said on Facebook this week, Lorrie’s schedule, a Chick Flicks for Mom video, specific news and announcements regarding the affiliate magazine, and then finishes up with a “timely tip” to share.

To sign up for this FREE newsletter, go to the website for Eternal Encouragement Magazine (http://www.homemakingwithteach.com/) and enter your e-mail address in the box that says, “Sign up for our e-mail newsletter.” For those interested, you can also find subscription info on there for the magazine itself.

Disclaimer: I reviewed Encouraging Moments as an official member of The Gabby Moms blogging program for Eternal Encouragement magazine. I did not receive compensation for this post and all opinions are solely my own.
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10 comments:

  1. I always find it interesting to find out what my dh is thinking about things....sometimes it is encouraging and sometimes it is NOT. Your willingness to work on the areas that bother him are a tribute to your desire to please God. Great review, BTW.

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  2. I, too, find myself spending a lot of time on the computer, but learning to balance that time, too. I work from home, along with home schooling my kiddos, and use the computer (instead of paper/pen) for journaling, recipes books and bill payment. Yet, I realized I, personally, needed 'off hours'. Figuring that out was a good thing for me. :)

    Great review, too!

    Jada (another Gabby Mom)

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  3. Believe me I UNDERSTAND what you wrote! Keith and I haven't needed the Newly Wed Game to have those same conversations...they just happened all on their own, over the same issues! It has been an adjustment for me to try to see things from his point of view, and I'm still learning to do that. God was just convicting me about something else that I need to see from Keith's perspective too. Thank you for your honesty in sharing, it's encouraging.

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  4. I love this review! Most of the time I don't want to know what husband is thinking! I'm sure I've have to take action and change some things in my life...at least your willing to do that, good for you!
    fellow Gabby Mom

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  5. I too use my computer time as a reward for getting housework done. It's a good motivator. ;)

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  6. Thank you for sharing. I think the computer is a temptation for every blogger! I've had to set limits as well. I think the focus on marriage during Valentine week sparked much communication!

    Blessings!
    Tina, Gabby sister

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  7. It sounds like your week was eye-opening and convicting, just as all of our weeks should be. Just enough to handle one week at a time! Nice review.

    Julieanne (fellow Gabby Mom)
    http://www.JoyInOurJourney.com

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  8. I LOVE your review! I was laughing so hard! What was your church thinking using those questions!? I wouldn't be surprised if EVERY couple heading home had a perturbed wife and a confused husband! So funny! Nice job!

    Oh, and I feel ya on the computer addiction. I too have been convisted lately about serving my family first. Its humbling!

    MacKenzie
    Head Mama

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  9. Thanks, MacKenzie (and everyone else who responded)! I let my husband read this before I posted it (since it involved him), and he thought it was pretty comical also.

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  10. rlol see what u were saying
    good blog though

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