Friday, April 9, 2010

a military wife's guide to the galaxy

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i was talking to my mom the other day about how God hand picks your life just for you. with all of its joys and  the trials, and in his divine wisdom, he picked me for this life. though i never would have imagined this life in my fairytale vision of how it would be... it is the perfect fit in its own quirky way. happily ever afters don't just happen on their own after true love's kiss. happily ever after is made up of a thousand tiny choices and blessings. blessings we can miss if we're too busy worrying just how to make our ending work out. this life may not be the storybook tales i imagined, but it is so much more rich and wonderful,  messy and hectic and beautifully real than i could have dreamed. 

i am so grateful that this life was hand picked just for me. in a week from today my amazing husband will have been gone {on deployment} for five months, and my happily ever after involves a lot of skype. but skype is a huge improvement from the days o delay-action phone calls 10+ years ago. we're been able to live more our precious moments with our very own flat stanton. though he's no wider than a macbook, he can fill a room with contagious laugh. though he's on the other side of the world, he encourages me through my daily life. though the days aren't always easy, they are mine and i cherish them as a gift as best i can.

so i guess that's step 1 of my guide to the galaxy... love your hand picked happily ever after.


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step 2. focus on the things that bring you joy.
though i can hardly imagine my life before the girls, i know it existed. these beautiful girls have changed my life in more ways than i could have imagined. they have taught me to love like i've never loved. they have made me grow up, yet stay young at heart. they bring me constant joy.

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step 3. remember God's promises
...and surely, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. matt. 28.20

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step 4. laugh with life, even when it laughs at you
what i said, "torrey, will you please put the vacuum away."
what i ought to have said, "torrey, please UNPLUG the vacuum cleaner, wind up the cord and put the vacuum in the close. 
it totally reminded me of the bill cosby sketch talking about giving his kids instructions before bed. ah, the hilarious truth that is real life!
on this day, with this ring

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step 5. make time for simple pleasures.
as a mad scrapbooking hobbyist, i am lucky enough to relive my memories on film and on paper. making the time to create in a way that adds so much richness to life is a blessing indeed. i get a chance to dwell on my hand picked happily ever after, and to be thankful for each step along the way. 

(this page was for an article over at the scrap review... check out my full review and a few other layouts here.)

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step 6-10. love
i had aspirations of coming up with more guides to the galaxy, but i'm getting kind of sleepy. so i think i'll just sum the last five in one. love. it's the best darn life guideline i can think of and it pretty much says it all. when in doubt... {love}

15 comments:

Mary Lou said...

Great job and love your take on the galaxy. It's a beautiful world out there if people choose to look at the bright side of things. Your attitude, outlook, creations and beautiful daughters always make me smile!!!

THANKS, NOEL!!!!

american girl primitives said...

Great pics, inspiring post, it's funny how God chooses certain things for each of us isn't it?

Jeanne said...

Noel, I don't comment very often, but I just wanted to let you know that even if I don't, I am always truly inspired after reading your posts(and I do read every one). I just love how you embrace and beautify your life. Your daughters are gorgeous, your artistic talent immense and your sense of humor and gratitude shines through.

You may not even remember that I first got to "know" you (or of you) through Jessica Sprague's website a couple of years ago. I also read your mom's blog.

I just finished reading a book by Deborah Norville called Thank You Power and it really struck me that you exemplify Thank You Power as she shares about it in her book.

So, THANK YOU for sharing what you share. It means a lot to me and gives me a wonderful boost each time I read a post.

Have a beautiful day.

Veronica said...

Noel Joy, I live and believe like you! I find the joy in every day that God gives me. It is too much work and a waste of time to complain about the "what ifs" and "what nots." Stay young. Love often.

Amy said...

This is beautiful Noel! Thanks so much for sharing your beauty and inspiration...

Tina said...

Love this post, Noel!!!

Great pictures and wisdom for us all.

Love,
Tina

Tanja said...

What an inspiring post Noel, and such beautiful pictures!

I am loving the Blik website, thank you for sharing. Now if I could just make up my mind!

Tracy said...

Wonderful post Noel. I love reading your "everyday life" posts as well as looking at your artwork as you put so many things into perspective for me and set me back on the path I have chosen for my life's journey. Thank you for your creative and philosophical wisdom...did you ever think that the life that was picked for you would inspire so many people? LOL.

And as a military wife...I too not so fondly remember the days of delay action phone calls...in the wee hours of the morning...being patched through from the base and always wondering if someone was listening. Thank goodness for modern technology!

have a wonderful weekend.

Luv2talk said...

Hey, this REALLY is a good post. One of my favorites, for sure. Great shots, great thoughts, and just the right amount of humor. Just like always!

AngMomof3 said...

Been thinking of you as you've mentioned somewhat recently that you were in a bit of a creative slump and were feeling down. By the looks of this fabulous and inspiring post, you've conquered both! :)
P.S. How long do you anticipate Stan to be gone?

camilla said...

All so well said, friend. Good wisdom. I can hear echoes of some what you told me many years ago when I was still hell-bent (is that a word?) on looking for my fairy-tale. You have an awfully lot of wisdom. Are you 90?

Stan said...

Wow babe, I guess I never really thought of a "hand picked happily-ever-after". I keep thinking of ways to improve our situation but all along you are content with where we are and what we have. I guess God blessed me with the best wife a man could ask for. Thank you for being YOU! Always, I love you!

Steff said...

Noel, your photography is so amazing! I love looking at your blog and getting ideas for photo angles and such. You are inspiring---and not just with your photography!

Chrispea said...

Hello! Wowzers, those rainbow pictures are stunning! Hope all is well! xoxo

Katie Scott Scrapbooking said...

wow! very inspiring stuff.

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