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What's On Your Bucket List this year?

It's been a hard two weeks, well I think It's been more tough than that. It kind of reminds me of the "Office" when Michael Scott is thinking about his year and says:

Yeah. My feeling exactly.

First, it all started when I went an entire week without a phone. I almost died. I'm serious. I could do all my business stuff at home on my desktop. But when I actually needed a phone (like when a client went to the wrong place and tried to call me. Or when I got lost without GPS in the middle of Norfolk with three kids, or not being able to actually call my husband about any random complaints I had, and only rely on Facebook messaging). Yeah, that was week one.

Then in week two, my three old year old decides that every day he will throw up on himself for no reason. Then at night, he will wake up screaming three to four times in the middle of the night.

I've never been so exhausted in my whole life. I honestly can't even put coherent sentences together any more (or is it any longer??? see what I mean.)

Then at week three, my daughter discovers that at six that she thinks she can talk to me like she's the boss. No ma'am. And in my house, we have to do chores when we sass back.

I actually had someone ask me this week how homeschooling was doing. I almost cried. Between having three kids and running a business and being in the busiest time of the year and trying to be a good wife and mother- sometimes it's been hard. Not hard for me to think of stuff to do, but hard for my daughter who again, thinks she knows what's best and has already discovered this horrible phrase,"Nope. Not gonna do it."

I hate it when she says that, or the other awful phrase, "This boring." Grrr. Does she know how many hours that I have been preparing for her school time every month? She she know about how many dollars I have put into all the supplies and curriculum. She doesn't give a rat's &$$ about it. (Yes, I'm a pastor's wife and I almost cussed in my blog. Sorry, I'm not perfect). She just cares if it's fun and she get's a candy or treat out of doing it.

I remember the last time that I went out with my husband for a date. It seems that all we talk about is our greatest desires and our "life without the kids." You know, the conversations about where we would travel to, where our next bucket list item will be checked off.

So far, my husband's bucket list consists of: living in a van, living in a third-world country, living in a log cabin, and growing a beard. Not in that order of course.

My bucket list includes: not getting up in the middle of the night for ANYTHING, not being used as a food source, traveling the world, having clothes that don't have throw up on them, being able to actually take a warm bath (with not interruptions- oh and all-you-can-eat Nutella desserts all-the-time (with no calorie repercussions of course.)

I don't think I'm asking for too much.

Every time we go out, we always talk about things that we want to do, as if we are missing out on something. As if having kids was a HUGE break in our hopes and dreams and we can't wait to get back to what we want to do FOR REAL.

I was listening to the radio on day when there was a break from the usual Chris Tomlin song to do a short devotional minute.

The radio spoke of a Christian lady that lived in the same house her whole life and never traveled anywhere. But she had an after-life vision while in her old age. Then she saw heaven.

She didn't just SEE heaven, she experienced heaven. She saw more beauty than the world could ever give her. She smelled and touched and tasted more vividly than anything in her entire life put together.

Then she saw her family. All her children and their children- all serving Lord and worshiping all together around God's throne.

It was the BEST experience of her life and it would never be stamped on her passport or cost her any amount of time or money.

I had an amazing thought:

Maybe I'm not missing out on anything.

Maybe I'm not missing out on traveling or seeing other 1,000 things that I haven't be able to do without kids. Maybe I am living "it" already.

I sat in the car and tears went down my cheeks, right there at a stop light next to 7-11.

I was thinking about this life all wrong.

Life is not about fulfilling all of my bucket-list desires- to see all the world has to offer.

It's about seeing my family as a destination, not a detour. As a future investment, not a "present suffering."

I could spend my whole life trying to run away from the destiny that the Lord has already put before me.

If I don't take advantage of the time that I have now to invest in eternal things and bring my family to grow up to KNOW the Lord, then all the things that I want to do in my life will be shallow and empty.

You can't bring a passport full of stamps into heaven. Besides, you think Paris was pretty, just wait, it can't hold a candle to what God has waiting for us.

- Christal Marshall

I'm a homeschool momma of three and pastor's wife that is pretty much attached to her camera at all times (it's my fourth child).

I love sushi (a little too much actually) and nutella (but not together, that might be gross... or will it?)

I am also a photographer, graphic designer and all-around humble business owner of www.marshallartsstudiophotography.com and www.studiomarshallarts.com

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