Leaves changing and Life-changing

img_7683Brance and I took the girls downtown today to enjoy some of the beautiful fall foliage that is making an appearance in Boston.

fall-colorsAlthough the foliage map says we are at peak in this part of the country, we have found that the city takes about 2 weeks longer than the surrounding area to reach the full glory of fall.

img_7686Brance recently came across an article that verified our little theory. Apparently, all the pavement and bricks and cement retain heat making fall come later than it would otherwise— not just to Boston but other major metropolitan areas as well. Like, obviously, NYC!!

img_7685Good to know as you plan your foliage trips, right? I can imagine it would be disappointing to plan and save, wanting to see the Boston Common or Central Park in all their fall splendor, only to arrive two weeks early and there be a spattering of color like today (even though it was still very pretty see).

But it’s coming. Fall’s coming! And if what we saw today is any indication of what is to come, we are in for a treat this year.

img_7744I almost didn’t go today. I was not feeling well (dang an autoimmune disease that makes me run random fevers and experience malaise). But, making memories with my little family is important, so I downed some aspirin and went anyways. And I am so glad I did!

img_7719 img_7727Parenting is tiring and un-relentless, but it is sweet moments and memories like these that make all the toil, sweat, and tears worth it. These are the things we’ll remember and savor and talk about years from now when life looks very different.

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Wandering around the city, I was reminded of the importance of beauty and shared memories. I was reminded of how life is meant to be savored and enjoyed in simple things like fall and family. God gave us these good gifts, after all.

img_7755I try to live this way—finding joy in all aspects of life, from great to small. Resting thankfully and calmly in the circumstances of my life. To never, ever compare my simple existence against someone else’s seemingly more exciting one (you know, kind of the way my kids already naturally approach life :). This has changed my life more than I could have imagined.

I would be lying if I said I did this perfectly. But the more I live this way, the more peace and joy I experience. The more I am able to genuinely be happy for other people when good things happen to them. And I don’t feel threatened by their success.

We wouldn’t dream of putting it into words. But, how often do people live like happiness is a pie and that if someone gets a piece through good circumstances that means  there is less available to others—including ourselves? We feel deflated or less-than when we hear that others have experienced success, especially if we have not or even worse are experiencing “failure”.

But it doesn’t have to be this way!

When I finally learned to thankfully embrace God’s will for my life, the good and the ugly, the exciting and the mundane–everything changed. When I finally began to thank God for the good that happened to other people, even people who had hurt me deeply–everything changed.

We’re talking MAJOR transformation. Like a tsunami of peace and joy and hope washing over my life. I finally knew what it felt like to be content. To really, truly be happy with the life that God had given ME to live.

And, oh my, did it feel good to finally be able to enjoy every drop of color in my world.

I didn’t realize a blog post about our family outing downtown was going to morph into this, ha. I guess that is why I named this space A Life Enjoyed :). I am obviously pretty passionate about this topic.

I hope you are enjoying life, regardless of your circumstances. It IS possible.