Jen in Real Life . . .

I can watch the movie Dan in Real Life a million times and love it more every time.  Not so much because of the story line.  I mean, it’s a great one, but that’s not what I love about the movie.

I love that their entire family goes to this big house on a lake every year.

I love that they get on each others nerves, but really enjoy being together.

I love that they put on a variety show.

I love that they love each other.

Yes, I know it’s a movie and that we all have our fair share of family dysfunction.  But I watch a movie like that and wonder what the parents in the movie must have done to make that family so much of what I dream of.  How do families end up loving and enjoying each other rather than imploding and hurting each other?

I have to admit, I find myself thinking about the future with two daughters and that simultaneously terrifies me and thrills me.  I wonder what Gerron and I can do now to try to instill in them a love for each other and for our family.  I wonder what I can do as a mom to teach them how to communicate with each other in ways that are affirming and life-giving.  I want these girls to be the very best of friends one day . . . I know I don’t have any control over that, but I do think there are things I can do to make our home a place that models love and laughter.  I’m sure there are some things I can do to make them want to be here and want to be with their family.  Oh, I hope I can at least.

I’ve made a few simple resolutions for this brand new year – this decade.  Because at the end of this decade, heaven help us all, I’ll be the mom of a teenager and a pre-teen.  Eeek.

1.  Make our house a home – a home that my girls and husband can be proud of and want to spend time in.  A home that is welcoming to others.  A home that is not cluttered with junk (both physical and emotional)

2.  Invite people over more.  We haven’t done that much here in Nashville which saddens me.  I always feel like my house is more of a home after others have been here.  I don’t know why.

3.  Practice the Fruits of the Spirit.  Which means, be more in tune with God and be more intentional about attitudes and actions.  I’ve not been so great about those things lately.  So, I pray that my life will exude love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and self-control.  Yikes, tall order.  (Did I get them all?)

I just want my girls to look back on their life at home with us and remember times of laughter and fun and so much love.  I want them to think of home as being a place of peace and joy.  I want them to think about me in ways that show them kindness and gentleness.  And I want our family to live out these things with each other.

I fail miserably at these things far too often.  I hate that.

Hopefully, though, these sweet girls will never know anything other than these things in their lives.

And hopefully, one day, people will look at our family and want to be part of it just because of how much we love each other.

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