Ordinary Goodness

Ordinary Goodness is a phrase I first heard on Shelly’s Instagram. She’s a mom to 4 kids, three “launched” into college/the real world and one in high school. I love following her for her candid sharing about the beautiful phase of raising teens and beyond. It’s nice to have someone you admire just ahead of you in life, so you can get a glimpse of what that phase might look like and how to approach it with an open heart.

Anyway, ordinary goodness is about finding the simple richness of life that’s right in front of you. “The Good Stuff” as Kenny might call it. Or romanticizing life as others might say. It’s a concept I believe in pursuing wholeheartedly, especially after losing my dad and finding that the things I miss most are the ordinary and simple experiences.

I’m not sure if you’ve heard the catchy “where focus goes, energy flows” that I believe comes from Tony Robbins. It means that whatever we focus on expands and intensifies. Controlling our focus is therefore a hugely important part of a happy life, and I’ve found focusing on the ordinary goodness to pay dividends.

So as I come to you today with a slightly cluttered mind and not quite as full of that “go get ’em energy” that I usually have at the start of the week (I blame monthly hormonal shifts), I’d love to share with a few of my ordinary goodness moments lately. I’d also like to encourage you, respected reader (a phrase my dad always used in his psychology articles), to spend a few minutes today reflecting on the ordinary goodness in your life. If you’re up for sharing it with, I’d sure love to hear it.

Life with a Tween

Hailey turns 11 in a couple weeks. That’s full on tweendom, right? Label it whatever, this phase of parenting a 10 and 8 year old is lovely. The growing independence and the ability to enjoy expanding experiences is so much fun. We recently visited Discovery Place and while Kaitlyn still might sprint from exhibit to exhibit, Hailey is at an age where she enjoys reading a bit more about the focus and then really dig into it.

I love walking in the house and finding them baking cookies together (usually to sell; thank goodness we have a generous neighborhood). And while they can squabble with the best of them, I’m so grateful at how well they still play together, too, whether it’s American Girl Dolls or science experiments in the driveway. Ordinary goodness.

Family Game Nights

I am soaking in the last couple weeks of August before we jump back into soccer, swim, co-op, and all the things. I believe we are ready for the fall routine, but making pizzas at home, reading aloud together, and playing board games has brought me immense joy recently. In the past week we’ve played: Trekking the World, Monopoly, and Spy Alley. Ordinary goodness.

Connecting with Friends

I’m going to be more mindful about reaching out to friends. It’s not a natural strength of mine, as I tend to get wrapped up in my family’s world. However, last week a friend I don’t often get to see one on one invited us to the park and we chatted each others’ ears off for four hours while the kids played. It filled my cup!

We met with our besties on Friday for Mexican dinner out which was as fun as always, and my college girlfriends and I even have a tentative girls’ weekend on the books. I don’t think we have all been together since Alexis’ wedding in 2017. What?! Making time for friends- Ordinary goodness.

Impending Fall

Yes, yes, I know it’s still going to be warm for a while and I’m not wishing away summer (we have boat club reservations coming up for some tubing). However preparing to make my home feel cozy and fall-like makes me bubble up with joy on the inside. I’m holding off on decorating until Labor Day, but I won’t pretend wandering through Sweet Grass last week made it easy to resist. The new shelves David built for our living room look so great and I cant wait to cover them with pumpkins! Ordinary goodness.

Making Meals

I asked Hailey last night if she’d like to go out to dinner for her birthday or have me make her whatever she requests. She answered “mom, your cooking is better than anything at a restaurant” and my heart melted. She went on to request burgers and tator tots which I find hilarious because there isn’t much cooking associated with that, but I digress…

Getting meals on the table every. single. night is certainly a labor of love, but it’s one I take a lot of pride in and I hope my kids will remember me loving them in that way. Ordinary goodness.

I have a whole dinners lately post in the works, but here’s a few recent favorites:

I could add more, like evening walks and debriefing of life with David, or a snoring puppy at my feet, but it’s time for me to sign off to prep for our two weeks of new curriculum. We finished our first Gather Round unit (review coming tomorrow!), and now will do two weeks focused on language arts, math, and geography before beginning our next unit- farming and food!

I truly hope your week begins in a positive way; and wishing a lot of ordinary goodness to come your way… and to be noticed. <3