a life more intentional

I came across the blog of an old high school friend last week, the premise of which is the fact that she lives “a life less ordinary”. Immediately, my blood pressure rose.

‘Who are you calling ordinary?’, I defended. As I scrolled through her pictures of New York’s fashion week, I looked up from my laptop to the baby toys strewn about on my rug and the pile of laundered cloth diapers I needed to put away because it was nap time and if I didn’t do it now…

‘Hers must be a neat life,’ I thought.

I tried to put it out of mind. I decided that we, once English and French classmates, had simply chosen dramatically different paths in life. I would not trade scattered toys or un-finished laundry and the sweet baby cheeks that come with them for all the Michael Kors backstage passes in the whole entire world.

I decided to be happy for each of us in the completely separate lives that we lead.

But then I got to the ‘about’ section of the blog, which included a description of the present blogging world as mostly “dull diaries… of the uninspired” and went on to say that this writer wants her blog to be used, instead as a “source of inspiration and enlightenment”.

[Someone hold me back.]

You listen, and you listen clear:

There is no place that has taught me to find sources of inspiration and enlightenment in the dull daily activities of life more than the blogging community.

Have you met her? Her name is Heather and she inspires me with her honesty about the big things God is doing in her life. She is public about her brokenness and the fact that she cannot do this on her own.

Have you read this? This is a site for the stories of abuse survivors. This site gives them a voice and the stories, though heart wrenching and painful, are clear examples of beauty rising from ashes.

Do you know about her story? She recounts her beautiful birth, what it was like to look at her baby for the first time, and the feeling of numbness followed as she realized her perfect baby had Downs Syndrome. More importantly, she tells the inspiring story of the deep, deep love of a mother.

Or this miracle? She survived a loss and a pain I simply cannot imagine, and God has kept His promise of faithfulness to her. She writes about it beautifully.

No words short of inspiring and enlightening describe these women and their stories. It is clear to me that someone who would assume that the blogosphere is filled nothing more than the ramblings of mere housewives has not looked very close at all.

These women are thinkers. They are closet theologians. They truly live and they do not need to be part of a runway show to do it. They inspire me daily to do things, though they may seem dull, in a way that is less ordinary because it is more intentional. I have learned from them to pray for my son and husband as I fold their respective laundry. I have been reminded that God is in everything. I have been encouraged by the purpose with which they live and think.

Gosh, I love these women.

Blogging is the only medium I have seen that can breathe thoughts of the divine seamlessly into a commentary on temper tantrums.

And I say that takes more talent than being inspired by the extravagant lifestyles of the rich and famous.


41 Responses to “a life more intentional”

  1. abby

    Speak it sister!! I completely and wholeheartedly agree with you. That’s fine if she wants to blog about her “exciting life”. (Can you imagine living in NYC? I would never want to live there…Visit yes, live no.) But she shouldn’t be dogging others. She obviously hasn’t opened her eyes to what blogging really is. It’s real people talking about their real lives. Just because someone is a stay at home mom it doesn’t mean that that person is dull and therefore shouldn’t blog! I get most inspired by blogs like this one that talks about the real struggles of daily life (and has cute pictures to boot!)! It makes me feel like the authors are normal and just like me. And one day I hope to be folding baby clothes and kissing baby cheeks and blogging about it!!

  2. Ran

    What a sad existance–to have nothing to look forward to in life, but loosing all that you have because you’re ‘old.’ Someday very soon, she will face that which she mocks.

  3. Tricia

    You go, girl! Funny – I was just indulging in some Real Housewives of NYC on TV and started to examine my little life compared to their dinner parties, Met openings, etc. I then snapped back into reality, realizing that I live a worthwhile existence where God has me. I am blessed!

  4. Sara Joy

    Thank you. I don’t have better words.
    RE: your friend – it is such a sign of immaturity to assume that somehow her life choices are any less ordinary than the other million people who live within a 2 mile proximity to her. We are all ordinary, and we are all extraordinary, it is all a matter of how you choose to view life and those around you.
    I’ve personally found that seeing the extraodinary in as many things as possible has led to far more joy, peace and happiness than were ever available in finding myself the only extraodinary one around. :)

  5. Mama23Bears

    i absolutely 100% agree with you! i am more than inspired by you daily when i stop by to read here. i have been led to other blogs from just stopping here and find other wonderful women with amazing stories and spirit. i think the blogging community has given me a place to vent,laugh,commiserate, and grow. i have realized that although to some my life is small and quite boring, it is absolutely where God wants me to be. and that, my friend, is the greatest place i can be!!!

  6. Elizabeth

    Enjoying the Small Things is my favorite site on the web. Kelle is so strong, graceful and inspirational. I agree with this entire post! :)

  7. Lindsey

    Wonderfully written! And I am sure her life is pretty amazing, but I would never trade my soon to be stay at home mom status for all the New York Fashion Week hype…I love my life just the way it is…and just the way I always hoped it would be!

  8. Sara

    While I do not have children of my own yet, I only dream to live an ordinary and dull life such as yours. To care for my children and husband and to serve the Lord is beyond ordinary.

    Well said: ‘less ordinary because it is more intentional” Just beautiful. Keep writing and know that you are inspiring others through your blogging (read: You have inspired me greatly!) just as the links you have shared has inspired you.

  9. annemarie

    It’s all true. Real life, as a whole, is boring – until you start to look closely and realize that every single moment is pure amazing gift.

  10. Heather of the EO

    I love this feisty post filled with grace and love. You rock the party.

    There is this never-ending ocean of wisdom and inspiration right here at our fingertips and I can’t say enough how much I love it. And it’s this chance to find kindred spirits we would never have found another way. That’s a big deal.

    I guess some blogs would seem dull and uninspired. But that’s only when you don’t have eyes to see the beauty and LIFE in the everyday things. Or if you don’t recognize seeing someone’s heart on the page when they write of their love for their family or any other thing that appears to be cookie cutter but is not.

    P.S. Thank you for saying such things about me. I’m beyond happy to know you.

  11. Elaine

    Sing it Sister! I’m so glad she inspired you to write this post (your ‘old’ friend). Fashion once consumed my life and now my children do and it’s SO much more fulfilling!! :) Of course that’s the beauty of blogging – we all get to tell our separate stories. ;)

  12. Vanessa

    Well said.
    And thank you, thank you for sharing Kelle’s story. I wept as I read through her beautiful and heartbreaking recounting of Nella’s birth.

  13. Megan

    Oh, bless her heart. Maybe some day she will be lucky enough to have a child and then she will know that being *ordinary* is as fabulous as it gets.

  14. brittney

    Glad to see this post when I came back to the blogging world to get caught up on everything I’ve missed. I’m more than looking forward to my future life as a mother with toys and cloth diapers and writing about every moment that is new and exciting to me. Thanks for the encouragement!

  15. rebecca d

    I totally agree… but I also want to say “sour grapes”… in a few years when her blog is all about “infertility treatments” because she is 47 and just getting around to having a family… maybe she will be inspired and strengthened by the amazing woman she scoffed in her arrogance… maybe not…

  16. Corinne

    That would have had my blood boiling!
    Then again, to each his/her own. If I didn’t have this life, full of the things I think are extraordinary, I might not understand.

  17. Amanda

    Really wonderful Allison. You made some AMAZING points here! And I love where you see inspiration. And I love the way you describe it! This is just awesome!


  18. Mae

    I already told you how I feel about this, but frankly her life is the one that sounds empty to me. And I’m not trying to be ugly, obviously I don’t know her and she likely doesn’t deserve that (maybe some gentle guidance away from the edge of sounding-like-a-dumbass sure, but not ugliness, probably?) but if a life of judginess is what passes for “intentional” in her world right now, that’s a tragedy.

  19. Dagmar Bleasdale

    Thank you so much for this post! It’s sad that we look to the rich and famous for inspiration. What do they have to offer? I just read the birth story you mentioned of a blogger I hadn’t come across yet, and I feel privileged and blessed to have been given a chance to read that inspiring post.

    Dagmar’s momsense

  20. andrea

    Hi Allison, I am one of your closeted readers (I love your blog, btw), but I had to come out of the closet for this one because I have actually visited the blog you are talking about!!! I landed on it very randomly (like most things on the internet) while looking for some inspiration for my wedding a few days ago. I was obviously NOT inspired by this blog, and had the same reaction as you when I read the About section. You have just written all the things that I thought about while I read that blog. Very well said! xxo

  21. Kelly @ Love Well

    People like this make me angry beyond words — but then again, I don’t want to waste a moment of my life on them. (Not because they aren’t worth it, but because I have no influence to change their opinion.)

    All I know is — they are missing out. Someday, if they are lucky, they will be humbled enough to realize what beauty is. Because right now? They are missing it. It’s the difference between McDonald’s and a homemade dinner.

  22. Kaycee

    I love this post. And the links were AMAZING! So so inspiring and why I read people’s “ordinary” blogs every day.

  23. Cori

    Ooooh- I like feisty Allison! : )

    “Blogging is the only medium I have seen that can breathe thoughts of the divine seamlessly into a commentary on temper tantrums.”

    This is so true! And why reading “mommy-blogs” is a part of my sahm day. I love how a well-written blog post can help me see the bigger picture when I am feeling stuck in the trivial bits.

  24. Jacquelyn

    I cannot explain how my stomach feels right now but I can say YOU GO SISTER! THAT. WAS. GOOD.


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