life is sweet.

Life is sweet….except sometimes it doesn’t feel that way.

Nothing ‘bad’ going on here, but just the everyday demands of home, family & work can easily leave me feeling overwhelmed. For our homestudy, we had to take a ‘test’ that looked at every area of our lives. One of the questions to help determine personal stress was “I don’t feel like there are enough hours in a day to get everything done that needs to be done.” We had to agree or disagree with that statement. I can’t imagine many parents that would not agree with that (except my husband who did not agree with it. What? Do we live in the same house?). I whole heartily agreed. Everyday demands can suck the joy out of everyday life…at least they can when I let them. Afterall, it really does boil down to how I view those demands.

I’m speaking to a MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group today. Speaking in front of people overwhelms me. It is a weird thing for me….“Hi my name is Ashley. I write a blog….which sounds a lot like blob. I will probably blab. Just nod your head and we’ll get through this.”

Life just feels a little too crazy and busy right now. Too many balls being juggled and the clock feeling like it is speeding up each day. I can’t work faster than I already do. I can’t catch up with the hands of the clock.

I can slow down. I can stop. I can take a break. In the midst of feeling completely overwhelmed with all that demands my time and attention, I stopped. I watched my daughter. She teaches me how to fully be in a moment without a single care towards anything else in the world. She teaches me that sometimes the greatest joys come in the smallest things. She reminds me that life is sweet…it is especially sweet when I am fully present, fully aware, fully engaged, and fully enjoying it. In this moment, with her, life is sweet. I don’t want to miss it. I may not get it again.

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  • Paige - Yes! Even on the road sometimes I get caught up in all that needs to be done. It’s tough to slow down even for a few minutes and relish the quiet, enjoying the moments. I’ve started, though, to play with Mega-Blocks outside with the girls—it helps.
    Love your posts about real life the best!

  • Ingrid - that second to last photo of her is one of my all time favs on this blog! that little smile she has is too cute!
    i have to remind myself to live in the moment with my kids sometimes too – i often leave the housework to hang with them, but not always do i leave behind the thoughts in my head about what i “should” be doing. i pray that i will have more patience and will be more present in the moment.

  • Lacey - Thank you for posting this, Ashley.

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - Life is sweet. I am so sorry you are feeling like it is going to fast. You are right on. just stop. the world will keep turning. It’s crazy that way :)

  • e l l a - Sweet she is ;)
    And so are you for being so honest. I think a lot of women (especially moms of little ones) have these high expectations to multitask and they always have this need to do more – - actually multitasking is not so wise anymore – I also learned that the hard way trying to balance motherhood with work. Sometimes, “do less” should be on a reminder board instead of “to do”. I’m thinking of this quote for you Ashley that I designed, I hope you like it:

  • Pamela - I totally agree – not enough hours. And sometimes the best thing to do is to stop and enjoy. Love the photos.(as always)

  • barbara Janaina - every word that you say is true! thanks! a lot! kisses from Brazil!

  • Lyn - This is so helpful! Just another reminder for me to take a deep breath! Firecracker is beautiful. Love the smile. My son does that. The big smile with cake batter on his face it’s one of the beautiful moments I love to get on film.

  • Mrs. Tuttle - That last pic is just perfect! It’s always good to s-l-o-w down. :)

  • tracy a - saw this post a day late. i’m sure you were great at mops…i seem to remember you organizing and pulling off and entire weekend dedicated to speaking to young girls, so this i’m sure you did just as well! that last picture? amazing. keep it forever!

  • Mama Moose - The last one is a Christmas Card Photo for sure!

  • Moriah - I wish I had a mother of preschoolers group I could join. :-) So with you on the overwhelmed note, thanks for the reminder. Firecracker is getting so big and that cake face makes even people she doesn’t know smile!

  • Amy Cannon - These are such sweet photos! I love your photos and I wish I could take your online class!! :)
    I love the color of your kitchen wall…do you happen to know what color that is?
    Thanks for inspiring me!

  • Veronica - She is so so cute… thanks for your post!

  • Amy D - Love this post! And the processing is beautiful! Did you use actions? Which ones?

  • becca g - her hair is getting so long!

  • Kelly - Your daughter just melts me.

    Great reminder to stop the craziness and find the joy in everyday! Love your blog.

  • hili - it’s so true, even though i know it,even though i really am greatfull, it’s hard to actually feel how sweet life is right now, when we’re so tired from trying to keep it all togrther .
    maybe that’s why it’s so important to take photos, you can look at them with some distance and be reminded that it is pretty sweet. i love the photos too. truely sweet, FC licking the choclate bowl. you seem to have a lot of alone time with her, is she home with you during the day ?

  • hili - btw, the post work is beautiful too. i know you usually use a milder post, but those second and third images are just gorgeous.

  • Kim Wike - thank you so much for sharing this. don’t kill me but I don’t own a house, or have any kids, or even pets, and sometimes I feel the exact same way. No matter what our situation is I think everyone feels this sometimes. Thank you for the reminder to be in the moment, it really wont ever happen again. We can be the ones to slow down, to stop. I’ve never thought of it that way. Love it!

  • Jocelyn - She is so cute! I have to agree with you, just by looking at these pcitures you can see how she enjoys her moments. Love it!

  • Heather - I cannot tell you how much your blog inspires me and reminds me to stop and take it all in…even if you’re not saying that in your blog… the emotions in your photos speak that way to me. I cannot imagine how you do it all. I for one am grateful for the time you take to share. One quick question if you don’t mind, what lens did you use for the photos in the post?

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