Morning Coffee With The Peaceful Nest. Having Peace Within Ourselves.

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Good Morning! I hope you are doing well 🙂 Welcome to Coffee With The Peaceful Nest. Today I want to talk about how to have peace within ourselves. In case you missed it, You can go back and read about what God says about peace. Then head over and listen to our podcast on speaking life to those around us. Which, to be honest, once we start speaking positive to ourselves and others, we begin ushering in a level of peace we never have known.

Peace comes from God. We know that. How do we start receiving that peace? I believe wholeheartedly it starts from having peace within ourselves. If we do not have peace with ourselves, there is no way that peace is going to emulate into our relationships and home.

If you are struggling with finding peace and keeping it, first look into yourself and see if you have peace there. You may be asking yourself. How? How to I have peace with myself. Here are a few ways .

1. Evaluate your relationship with God. Peace comes from God. In order to have the peace of God we need to evaluate our relationship with Him first.

2. Be an honest person. If you are not honest, and not trying to be honest, you will create for yourself more discord than if you would have otherwise. That starts with being honest with ourselves as well.

3. Do not be a gossip. There I said it. Gossiping is one of the biggest “joys” so many people seem to participate in. But what does God say about gossip? In Ephesians 4:29 he says Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. and in Proverbs 6:16-19 he states There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.

God tells us in his word to use our words to talk positive, not letting any corrupt talk come out of our mouths. He also tells us he hates the lying tongue, those who tell lies about others, and those who sow discord among people. What does sow discord mean? It means those who cause problems on purpose between other people. That can include (but isn’t limited to) spreading gossip about people.

4. Don’t desire the knowledge of other people’s business. This goes hand in hand with don’t be a gossip. I tell my girls all the time “Worry about yourself ,don’t worry about (insert other person’s name)” for example. If you are to busy spending your time worrying about other people, what is so and so doing in their lives right now, most of the time it has absolutely no bearing on you and your life. You have less time to focus on yourself and family . Doing so can cause an unsettled feeling in us. Because we are focused on what other people are doing. Two we are not focusing on what’s important around us.

One of my favorite quotes is “It is one of my sources of happiness never to desire knowledge of other people’s business.” – Dolley Madison

5. Self Care. As mothers we tend to neglect ourselves as we care for the needs of others. But self-care is important to our mental health as well as our physical health. You cannot draw from an empty well. Take the time to go out by yourself. Take a bath. Go on dates. Speak kindly to yourself. Go to the doctor. Take care of yourself too. Our children will also see how we take care of ourselves and emulate that into their own lives as they grow up.

6. Lastly, Don’t over book your schedule. It can cause stress for us when we have to do too much. There is no way to have peace within ourselves when we are overwhelmed.

Do you desire to have more peace in your life but are struggling on where to start? I hope these tips helped! Have a wonderful day and do not forget to join me tomorrow morning as I talk about having peace in our marriage! Later this week I will Ben and I will be discussing family dynamics and how that correlates a peaceful or non peaceful family. You will not want to miss it!

Like us on Facebook at The Peaceful Nest and Faith Actually: Living Life After Tragedy!

Until next time xoxo,

Jenna Jury

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Morning Coffee With The Peaceful Nest. What Does God Say About Peace?

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Good Morning! I hope you all are doing well. Welcome to a new segment I am doing called Morning Coffee With The Peaceful Nest, where I bring to you short thoughts, musings, and devotions. I wanted to start off with peace, since my blog is about finding peace in the chaos of everyday life, why not start with there?

Today I want to talk about what God says about peace. Webster’s Dictionary states peace as a state of tranquility or quiet and freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions.

I don’t know about you but having a state of tranquility with freedom from oppressive thoughts or emotions sound pretty good to me! It actually sounds too good to be true though, doesn’t it? Mothers can’t have peace. There is too much to do, to many activities on our plate. We need to make sure our kids are fed, bathed, rested, in every activity and getting along. We need to make sure our homes are spotless, our husbands are happy, and dinner is on the table. Many of us also hold outside jobs. There is just too much stress and no room for peace. No siree, peace is a distant dream, preserved only for those who are living on a tropical island, far from civilization. It can’t possibly be for me, I’m a mom. Oh but it is! Those are lies straight from the enemy, meant to trip us up and suck the joy out of our lives. The truth is, peace is to important not to try to maintain in ourselves, our homes and our family.

Today I wanted to take a look at what God says about peace.

2 Corinthians 13:11 says “Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.”

This verse says so much in one sentence! First it tells us to live in peace with one another. It doesn’t say that everyone has the same opinions, morals and values, but it does say to live in peace with one another. It also tells us that when we do live in peace GOD will be with us. He is the God of peace. This right here tells me that peace is important, God is a God OF PEACE.

John 14:27 says “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”

John 16:33 states “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

Wow.

From these passages I have gathered four things God says about peace.

1. God is a God of peace.

2. God gives us his peace.

3. God wants us to live together in peace and harmony.

4. Even in tribulation we can have God’s peace.

It is right there. If God tells us in his scripture that he is a God of peace and he will give us his peace, then shouldn’t it stand to reason, peace is just that vital to our every day lives? Even when it is difficult. Even when you are facing tribulation, try to grab hold and hang on tight to God’s peace today. Trust me, it will be worth the effort!

I hope you have enjoyed my very first Coffee with The Peaceful Nest. Do not forget to join me tomorrow morning when I talk about how to have peace within ourselves.

Have a wonderful day!

Jenna Jury

 

12 Ways to Be A More Peaceful Mom

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I started The Peaceful Nest because I have a desire to create a peaceful atmosphere for my family and for myself. Do you know the saying “If momma ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy?” It is meant to be a funny quip at mothers but oh how true it can be! I believe the mother sets the tone for her household. What a huge responsibility we have then as wives and mothers. It may not seem fair but God created women to be nurturers. Therefore, the responsibility of peace in our homes and families often land square on our shoulders. We cannot create a peaceful home life for our husbands and children if we are not peaceful ourselves. How do we do it then? In today’s society, when so many pressures are coming at moms to be better, do better, do it all. It is enough to make a woman lose her mind. How do we become a more peaceful mom? I have compiled a list of twelve ways to do just that! These are in no way the ONLY ways to bring peace into your home as a mom, but I have found in my own life, these tips have helped me come to a place where I am not only peaceful but helping those around me become more peaceful as well!

  1. Allow your children to try to work disagreements out together first.

This. I am so guilty of jumping right in at the first sign of animosity. “Mommy, S took that from me!” “Mommy, B is not playing fairly.” The minute I step in, it seems the bickering gets worse OR they play nicely for all of 30 seconds and then break out into another feud. Playing ref can wear on a mom. Then one day I was thinking to myself, I don’t remember my mom stepping in every time my brothers’ and I argued. Sure sometimes, if the argument began to get out of hand she would step in, but other than that, we worked it out on our own, or we didn’t and ended up playing by ourselves for a while. One thing remained the same though, we ALWAYS made up in the end. So what changed? Why do we as moms feel the need to step in and avert every single spat? I have a theory. It has to do with the fact that we want everyone to get along combined with helicopter parenting. You see, when I was arguing with my brothers’, I do not remember my mom being around. I’m sure she was in the next room, but she did not run in the minute she heard us arguing. She was not playing with us. She was probably making dinner or unwinding from a long day at wok. So, she let us try to work it out. That is the difference. We need to give our children tools to be able to work out discord with other people, without someone else always stepping in. Where better to practice this than at home with their siblings? The very ones who will most likely always have their backs and love them regardless of an argument? If we are always stepping in at the first sign of a disagreement with their siblings, then how are our children going to be able to cope when a friend disagrees with them or if they have conflict with a peer? How about when they grow up and become adults, how will they cope when a co-worker or boss or friend disagrees with them? I believe we have gotten a glimpse of what adulthood looks like when parents step in to often. Let us do ourselves a favor as moms, and allow our children to try to work disagreements out together first. If they are unable to work it out, then evaluate to see if you need to step in. The truth is not everyone is going to get along all the time and not everyone is going to agree with us. The sooner our children learn this, the sooner they will be able to develop tools to deal with more complicated situations than “my sister won’t let me play with my favorite toy that SHE had first.”

2. Limit screen time for your children and yourself!

I do not know about your children, but when my children have to much screen time, they become fussy, cranky and disagreeable. So do I! Screens divide our attention from one another. If you limit the screens in your house, you may find more peace showing up!

3. Allow your children free time.

Free time or free play. Do children even know what that is these days? As a mom we are often pressured to entertain our children. Sit for hours on end and make sure they are receiving entertainment along with stimulation, education, etc. It can be downright exhausting for a mother to keep up. But what would happen if we take a step back. Let the children enjoy a couple hours of completely uninterrupted playtime. Playtime where they used their imagination and learned how to play alone or with other children. I’ll be completely honest; I hate playing with my children. I will play games and I love making crafts. But playing? I would much prefer for them to learn how to beat boredom themselves without having to be entertained by me or electronics 24/7. How do children get to that point though? We have to offer them plenty of free play time. Set aside an hour or two a day where you say “okay kids, you go play by yourself or with one another, mommy is going to go do [insert your activity of choice here!].” If your children are not used to entertaining themselves, this may take a while, but don’t worry, kids catch on quickly! Before you know it they will be using those imaginations and you will be feeling more peaceful!

4. Do not over schedule your family.

“Ah, don’t you hate the “what activity is your child in right now” question? I know I do. We have decided to take the summer off of extracurricular activities, since we are in the midst of an adoption. However, even then I limit activities to one at a time. Otherwise we just become to burnt out and our children feel to over-scheduled. This is not good for you as a mom or your children! Yes, it is good for children to be involved, but there is such a thing as too involved. Pay attention to your child’s signs. Are they feeling overwhelmed? Are they putting too much pressure on themselves? These can be signs that your child needs to cool it down with the extras and just have breathing room.

5. Lower your expectations

Sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves and our children to act a certain way. Do not be loud in the restaurant. Sit completely still. Act like an adult. If you find yourself feeling frustrated that your child is not behaving the way you expect constantly, there may be a chance you need to reevaluate your expectations. Please do not get me wrong. There are certain behaviors that should be expected by different age groups, in different situations. There are activities I know my five-year-old can handle that my two-year-old cannot. Do not put your child in a situation you know would be too overwhelming for them, and then become frustrated when they behave differently than you want. Some situations are unavoidable. If you know there is a function coming up that requires a certain expectation from your child, such as a funeral or a wedding, take the time to prepare them first, then hope for the best. If all else fails, duck out early or hire a babysitter. Always remember though, you have several years on your child. They are not going to act like an adult, they will act like a child. But they will gain experiences that prepare them for situations. So do not be too hard on them and lower your expectations.

6. Allow your children to get dirty/paint/play with glitter etc.

I think this is one so many of us moms struggle with. We hate cleaning up the messy materials. If your child is anything like mine, then their creativity thrives on the messiest projects. So do it anyway, maybe not all the time, but sometimes. Create a designated spot for your child’s art activities. Then get the rags and mop out and clean up. What harm could it really do anyway? They will be happier, learn to play on their own/entertain themselves, and trust me you will feel more peaceful! (even if you do not think you will 😉 )

7. Do not sweat the small stuff

This one goes hand in hand with number five. There are some things that are simply not important. Spilled milk anyone? If we choose to be calm about the insignificant going ons in our life, the ones that do not matter, we will find ourselves becoming calmer when bigger circumstances happen around us.

8. Do not allow other people’s opinions to define you as a mother.

You are you. You are the perfect mother to your children. You know them best. Chances are you understand your children better than anyone else. So own it. Own who you are as a mom. Own your parenting decisions. You owe no one else an explanation. You can choose to listen to opinions if you would like, but always take them with a grain of salt. Because that is all they really are anyway, other people’s opinions. And really, who cares what other people think?

9. Have quiet time.

I LOVE quiet time in my house! There is a specific chunk of time my children lay down for naps/ quiet time. My oldest no longer takes naps but she will play quietly in her room. They get that alone time to unwind and I get a small chunk of time to recharge as well. I am able to stay more peaceful because of this break too.

10. Try to keep a routine

Routines are important. Children thrive on routines. If a child is unsure what is going to happen next in their day to day, they are more likely to act out and be moody. However, if a child has a consistent routine, where they know what to expect for the most part, they tend to be calmer. Which in tune helps mommy be calmer and more peaceful. Children need to know when to expect the basics. When are my meals? When do I nap? When do I go to bed? What comes before what? What comes after this activity? Having a specific routine set, so your child knows their meals and rest time is coming soon, will help your day go more smoothly.

11.Do not be so hard on yourself.

You’re only human and you are doing the best you can! Do not be so hard on yourself! Give yourself grace. The more grace you give yourself, the more peace you will bring into your life.

12. Practice patience!

Patience is a virtue, like I always tell my kids! Practice, practice, practice! Every day is a new day to start again.

I hope you found something useful and are able to use some of these tools to bring more peace into your life and home today!
Until next time xoxo,

Jenna Jury

Why I Choose Peace


I have been talking about peace quite a bit lately. I love my peaceful life. I love being able to provide a peaceful life for my family. But finding peace and holding on to it can be difficult when turmoil and pain attack our lives. There is no guarantee that you will not experience any type of heartbreak in this life. When heart break does happen it can be difficult to choose peace. But I have learned that choosing peace when you are at your lowest can often times be the thing that helps you up. So I am going to wrap up this series talking to you about why I personally choose peace.

If you looked into my life right now, without knowing anything about me and my family, you would see this picture.


You would see a fun loving family. Who enjoy one another. Enjoy their kids. Who love life and love each other. You would see peace. You would see a happy marriage with two happy children who are well taken care of and loved. You would see family vacations and calm evenings spent at home. You would see disagreements sorted out with ease most of the time. You would see what looks like a perfect, peaceful life. However, although this is what my life looks like now, five years ago my life looked completely different. Five years ago this was my life.


Five years ago my life was full of turmoil and pain. I had just experienced the worst heartbreak of my life. Five years, two months, and thirteen days ago I held my beautiful, perfect son David for the first and last time. I held him in my arms as he struggled between staying and leaving us. I held him in my arms as his heart rate dropped and it became clear that he was leaving us. I held him in my arms as the doctors unhooked the machines and escorted us to a private room. I held him in my arms as he took his last breath and I held him for a long time after he was gone. Five years ago I was at my lowest point. Five years ago I was questioning God’s very existence. Five years ago my life looked far from peaceful. I struggled with depression. I struggled with anxiety. There was no peace. Everywhere I turned all I felt and saw was turmoil. Getting up out of bed in the morning was difficult. If I’m being completely raw and open and honest with you I wanted to die right along with my son. I didn’t see the point in living if he was not here. Five years ago there was no peace. How did I go from having no peace to striving to always walk in God’s perfect peace? I realized that I could give up or I could keep going. But I couldn’t do both. I could not have kept going if it wasn’t for my husband, family, and most of all for God. If I didn’t serve God, if my husband didn’t serve God, I hate to think about where I would be today or even where our marriage would be today.

One morning after I had the worst night since David had died, I woke up and resolved never to get out of bed. I decided I was going to stay in that bed until I died. Then someone very dear to me reminded me that I had to keep going. She reminded me that I didn’t have a choice. I had people that were counting on me, people that needed me and loved me and that David would want me to live my life and enjoy it. Because his life was cut so short and he didn’t get to experience anything outside the NICU. I could have decided to continue on the path of turmoil and pain but instead I decided that I would make an effort to walk through the darkness, pain, hurt, and turmoil and find God’s peace. Even though I didn’t feel peaceful, I knew God wanted peace for my family and for me. I knew that some how a peaceful life could be reached. It was a long journey and I don’t have it down all the time yet. But losing David is the reason I choose peace. He is the reason I wake up every morning and resolve that today is going to be a good day regardless of what I face. He is the reason I decide every morning that despite what I face that day I will try my best to hold on to inner peace for myself and peace for my family. Because I want my family and daughters to experience peace when life is good but I also want them to realize they can and should choose to find peace when life isn’t good. When live knocks them down I want them to realize they can get up and they should get up. I want our home to be a safe haven for my children, my husband and myself. I want them to always know that when they come home they will find peace. No matter what is going on in their lives when they are kids or adults. Peace is important to me because life should be good. It is important to me because I believe we allow things that aren’t important to steal our peace and when something tragic happens like losing someone we love, we are already taped out. I encourage you today to choose peace. Choose to look for it. Choose to strive for it. Choose to hold on to it. It is just that important.

When I became pregnant with B I spent a month on hospital bed-rest and she spent another month in the NICU. I had quite a bit of time to think and spend with the Lord. Those days were long but I believe they brought me closer to God and closer to realizing his purpose for my life.

I hope that you decide to choose a peaceful life instead of one filled with turmoil. I hope that you decide that peace is just that important for yourself and your family. I hope that if you take anything away from this post it is that we can choose peace even when something tragic happens in our lives. I pray this series on Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family. Peaceful Life. has touched you in some way.

Until next time!

Jenna Jury

How can I stay peaceful as a mom?


The past couple of weeks I have taken a short break from writing. I had decided to not spend as much time on social media actually and not writing was consequential of that. The reason I decided to take my social media accounts off my phone was because I had been complaining about how I couldn’t find any time to get everything that NEEDED done, done. Then I realized “Jenna you are being so foolish. There are 24 hours in a day and you work from home. You waste away your time when you could be more productive.” So that is when I decided to take a break. My social media accounts are still off my phone but I will be checking more often and of course writing more now too! Since becoming a wife and mom I have been on a discovery on how to create and maintain a peaceful home. I have talked about having a peaceful marriage and having peaceful children. You can also find more posts in my Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family. Peaceful Life. category. I have touched briefly on how we cannot achieve peace in our homes and with our families until we have peace with ourselves. It’s easy to say but is it really that easy to achieve? I believe that if you want peace in your life you have to put it in the forefront of your mind. Are you doing all you can to reach peace? If you have it are you doing all you can to protect it and maintain it? Peace in today’s society can be difficult to come by. There are so many different things pulling at us. Mom’s have several thoughts bouncing around in their heads. Jobs, education, our kids education, marriage, finances, devotional lives, extra curricular activities for our kids, to name just a few. There are so many others out there. I don’t believe that peace within yourself, your home, your family, or your life is something that just falls into your lap. You must really want it and you must work at it. But it is possible to grasp and very much worth it. So how do you reach this peace that I keep talking about? Does it really exist? Is it really important? Yes it does exist. Yes it is important. I have found several ways that I maintain peace within my home and family that I will share with you.

SPEND TIME BY YOURSELF

This one is tough. As a mom when do you ever get time by yourself? If you are anything like me your children and dog follow you straight into the bathroom and stare at you while you are trying to use the restroom. Or if you shut the door they bang on it. Motherhood doesn’t offer much time alone. That is why you have to make time. Get up earlier than your children. Spend time with the Lord. Get your exercise done for the day. Meditate. Eat a healthy breakfast. Or just sit in the silence of your home before it becomes chaotic. This is one that I typically struggle with. I like my sleep. I am not a morning person. But I make a concrete effort to get up before my children. Most days I can. When I do, I feel more prepared for the day. If getting up is a struggle for you but you can catch some time to yourself at nap time or after bed time, do it. Instead of worrying about what needs to get done at nap time, spend that time alone by yourself. Doing this will do more for your inner peace than you may realize.

KNOW YOUR PRIORITIES.

In today’s society, especially as women, there is a lot of pressure to do it all. But we cannot do it all. And when we become so focused on all we have to do it is then when you can feel your inner peace slipping. A few weeks ago I took a look around at my messy house, my schedule, the unprepared dinner on the counter, and I had a breakdown. I beat myself up about how I couldn’t do it all. It was just too much. There were piles of laundry. A dinner I didn’t have time to cook, bills that needed paid, and so much more. Then I realized I was getting my priorities mixed up and putting too much pressure on myself to do it all. My priorities will always be God, my husband, and my children in that order. Now, your priorities may look different than mine and that is okay. My husband and children come before any job I have or anything else, that is why I made the decision to stop working recently and also why I decided to home school my children. Money is great, it buys many things, but the time I have with my children I can never get back. We decided we could live on less if it meant my entire household was at peace. It is important to know your priorities. So ask yourself. What is important to you? Are you trying to do too much? When you decide what is important and what isn’t it gets easier to shrug the things that aren’t important off.

GIVE YOURSELF GRACE.

This goes along with knowing your priorities. Give yourself grace sweet mom. You do not have to do everything. Remind yourself of this when you start to feel overwhelmed. I tell myself often “we live in our home” when I start feeling stressed about the messiness around me. Allow yourself to make mistakes. Allow yourself a break. Allow yourself to forget about cooking dinner and just pop in a pizza instead. Allow yourself to have fun and give yourself grace when you don’t feel up to par. Is anyone perfect? No they aren’t. That is okay. What is perfect anyway if you don’t have peace to go with it? Your inner peace and your family’s peace is more important than a neat and tidy house every single day.

DO WHAT YOU LOVE.

What is it that you love? Do you love being a stay at home mom? Is it possible for you to do it? Then do it. Do you love working? Then work. Do you love to write? Then don’t waste another day and start writing. Do what you love to do. Being stuck in a career, or place, or area that you feel miserable at does not help you feel peaceful. I have heard that your “feelings don’t pay the bills” and that is true. However, staying at a job that you hate will add no value to your life. All it will do is make you more miserable. I understand that it’s not possible for everyone to do something they absolutely love but a concrete effort should be made. If you have to work try to work somewhere you like. If you can’t then try to at least find a hobby that you enjoy. Something that you love to do that will bring you happiness and joy.

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.

As mothers we put everyone above ourselves most of the time. But taking care of yourself both physically and emotionally is so important to your children and to the state of your household. Taking care of your physical health and making it a priority should be important for a few reasons. You are showing your children that health is important and they should be healthy too. Also, although accidents happen and you never know how long you will be on earth, when you are taking care of yourself you are doing your part in striving for a long and healthy life. Emotional health is also important. That is why I have been talking so much about peace lately. Taking care of yourself can help you achieve peace within yourself.

GIVE GRACE TO OTHERS.

Give those you love grace. Give grace to your children. Did your child spill her milk? Before you chastise her for being clumsy remember that accidents do happen to everyone and the likelihood of her doing it on purpose was probably slim to none. Give grace to your husband. Did he load the dishwasher in a way that you hate? Instead of nagging him try doing it yourself. Give grace to your family members. Do you not see eye to eye with your siblings or parents? Let them have their opinions and you have yours. You are different people after all. Give grace to your friends. Did your friend say something offensive? Instead of jumping to conclusions think about what your friend actually meant. Along with giving grace to those we love, we should give grace to everyone else. That person that cut in front of you while you were driving, give them grace. You never know, they may have just had the worst day of their lives. Maybe they lost someone they loved, or a job, or maybe they are rushing to the hospital. Give grace to the person who hurt you whether intentionally or unintentionally. Don’t hold grudges against them. Instead forgive. Every one of us are just humans. Everyone of us think differently, act differently, and have different opinions and thoughts. Give grace, give forgiveness, let the grudges fall away and you will start to see that you feel more peaceful and less irritated.

DON’T INDULGE IN GOSSIP.

Gossip is a nasty time waster in my opinion. It is a way people kill time and make themselves feel better. Do yourself a favor and stay away from gossip. Don’t indulge in it. Don’t hang around people who gossip. I always tell my youngest sister, if they are gossiping to you, chances are they are gossiping about you. What gossip does is takes someone’s reputation and tarnishes it, creates lies and exaggerations and steals your inner peace. Whether the gossip is true or not ask yourself this “is it any of my business?” When you indulge in gossip about other people your mind is taken off of your priorities and is put on a story about someone else that may or may not be true. Frankly, what a person that is not living under my roof does or doesn’t do is none of my business. When you steer away from this quicksand your life becomes much more drama free and more peaceful.  It is well worth it.

SPEND TIME WITH GOD.

I wake up every morning and spend time with God. I enjoy this quiet time in his presence. I am reminded of his love for me and the sacrifice that he made when he gave his only son on the cross. I pray for many things but especially for the day ahead of me. This time with him resets me. It gets my mind ready for the day. It is a vital part of my day.

REMEMBER IT IS OKAY TO SAY NO.

Sometimes I think that we start to feel stressed out and lose our inner peace when we say yes to too many things. It is easy to feel pressured to say yes to everything that is asked of us but sometimes we just have to say no. That is okay. Your peace and the peace of your family is just that important. I am a homebody. There’s nothing I love more than staying home with my family and doing nothing except spending time alone with them. I try not to make mine and my family’s schedule too full because this time together is precious as well as important. My kids enjoy the down time and the time alone with me and my husband. My husband enjoys it. This is why I limit activities for my daughters. My 4 year old is currently doing two activities. She wanted to add gymnastics back in with the other two activities as well. Although I was tempted to let her, I said no she had to wait until she was done with one other activity. This is because I want her to understand the importance of down time and also because it is my job to make sure my daughter’s life is peaceful. What are some ways you can protect that peace for your family? Are you saying yes to much? Are your kids running ragged in too many activities? Remember it is always okay to say no.

Peace is so important. You cannot reach peace in your marriage or with your children until you have inner peace. I hope that you have found something helpful in today’s post that you can take away with you to help achieve a peaceful life and protect it.

Until next time!

Jenna Jury

Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family. Peaceful Life. Part Four


Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family. Peaceful Life. Part Four. 

Peaceful Children 

When creating a peaceful home it is important to consider all aspects of your family’s home life. In my previous post I talked about creating a peaceful marriage. You can find that post below. In today’s post I am going to be talking about helping creating peace for your children. Now I want to clarify that ultimately only your children can choose to be peaceful and create peace for themselves, especially as they grow older. But I do want to touch on some things you can do in order to help create and maintain a peaceful atmosphere for your children which will hopefully help them learn to choose peace over chaos when presented  with the options. In case you have missed the previous posts in my current series Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family. Peaceful Life. You can find them below.

Part one: when you have to make the hard decisions.

Part two: creating a peaceful home.

Part three: peaceful marriage. 

First I want to say I am no expert on parenting. I am learning new things everyday about my own children and about parenting. I am learning what works and what doesn’t work for them each as individuals. Every child is an individual. What may work for my child may not work for yours. However, I do believe that there are fundamental things that we can do as parents and especially moms to help create a peaceful atmosphere and life for our children. In doing these things we can help our children learn how to be peaceful and how to choose peace over chaos. There are a few things I have learned in last 4+ years of being a parent and I would love to share them with you!

  • Always keep a united front with your spouse.

If there is one thing that children don’t always get enough credit for it is for being bright and being able to pick up on subtleties. When raising children it is important to keep an united front with your spouse on everything. Discussions about things that will affect your children should happen away from the children out of ear shot. If you are caught off guard about a situation, and you or your spouse have to make a decision without consulting each other first I think it is always important to back up that decision regardless if you disagree with it or not. For example: say your child really wants to go out with a friend one night so they ask your spouse if they can. Your spouse says no for some reason. You didn’t think it would hurt for them to go out but your spouse has already made the decision. It is in the best interest of everyone to agree with the decision your spouse makes and not disagree with it, especially in front of the child. I say this for a few reasons. First if you disagree with your spouse and say no billy bob can go out tonight you are doing two things. One, you are undermining your spouse’s authority. Two, you are showing your children that you don’t respect your spouse’s opinion and decisions and neither should they. Backing up your spouse when making a decision and keeping a united front should be made a priority in my opinion. It shows your children that mommy and daddy are always on the same page. They cannot pit you two against one another. And it also teaches them that they need to respect both parents. I also believe that when this is done both parents gain confidence in their authority and of each other’s authority. Now I am not saying that you and your spouse will always agree with one another but your children should think that you do for the reasons I stated above. If a decision was made that one of you disagree with then it should be discussed in private. Decisions can always change. But undermined authority is difficult to repair.

  • Be present. 

When you’re with your children be clear minded. I have found that it is usually when I’m preoccupied or distracted that I get the most frustrated with my children. When I am constantly rushing and not listening and paying attention to them then I start rushing them to finish what they are doing or saying. Or I may not  actually be listening to them. They see this. My four year old can tell if I am truly listening to her. Because I am working with her on maintaining eye contact and listening she expects the same from me. Why shouldn’t she? She will be in the middle of saying something and pick up on the fact that mommy is distracted so she will say “mommy look me in the eyes and use your ears to listen to me.” Which is what I say to her. Time goes so fast you guys. You know the old saying goes “the days are long but the years are short.” There are certain things that don’t matter. That Pinterest board or that Facebook wall, those don’t matter. That laundry that needs put away or that dishwasher that needs unloaded. Those can be done later. They won’t matter in twenty years when your kids are grown and out of the house. You have right now. Here with your children. Be present. Listen to them. Engage with them. Play with them. God has blessed my husband and I with two daughters. He also blessed us with a son that he took home six days after he was born. That’s all we got. Six days. They were beautiful days but they weren’t enough. I never got with him what I get to have with my daughters. It has shown me to appreciate time so much more. Be present in the every day.

  • Give them consistent sleep habits. 

I am a huge believer in consistent sleep habits. I always have been. My daughters have regular bedtimes that are rarely later and they also have a consistent nap/rest time during the day.  Children get tired easier than adults. They need consistent rest and sleep and they need to have a clear picture of what that looks like. If their routines are just thrown together and they aren’t sure what comes next it will feel chaotic to them and that is when fits and tantrums happen. I would say that 90% of the tantrums my children throw happen when they are tired. Expecting a tired child to behave like they would if they weren’t tired is too much to ask of them. Ask yourself this question. When you are tired don’t you get grouchy and irrritable? Why expect something else from a small child who is still learning everyday and whose body gets worn out easier than yours. Children have absolutely no control over what happens during their day to day. If they don’t know what to expect they will feel chaos and chaos ensues chaos. Set a consistent bedtime for your child. The Sleep Foundation Website gives great guidelines for how much sleep children actually need via their ages. It is typically between 11-14 hours for young children. I know that it may be difficult to set a bedtime if your child doesn’t currently have one because they just simply don’t want to go to sleep. But children should not decide when they go to sleep. Parents know better than they do about what they need, therefore it is our job to set the rules. My children have always had early bedtimes. My oldest now goes to bed at 8 while my youngest goes to bed at 7. Our four year old’s bedtime has changed recently because she’s older. She also only takes a nap some days but I always have her lay down for quiet time to rest. If she needs a nap she will fall asleep. If she doesn’t she will at least have had some down time. Her moods are drastically different when she is well rested. Most children’s are. I have had several people give me funny looks when I tell them what time our children go to bed or if we have to leave a function early for bedtime. But like I said I am a huge supporter of consistent sleep habits and if my children don’t get enough sleep they are emotional and hard to be around the next day, and I am the one who has to be around them all day! Not the one’s giving me weird side eye.

  • Give them down time. 

As I stated above, I always give my children nap/quiet time everyday. It can become frustrating to work my schedule around this much needed time but it’s important for them to have it so it’s important for me to make it a priority. Children are learning everyday. Their minds pick up on so much every second of everyday. It can be tiresome. Naps are essential for young children. By the time they reach four or five they may be done with naps but laying down for quiet time with a book or puzzle can still be beneficial for older children. It gives them time by themselves to wind down. It gives their bodies time to rest. It is a great time for mommy to relax and rest too!

  • Make discipline a priority.

No one likes to discipline their children. It can be difficult. But it is important. Children will by nature push the boundaries to see what they can get away with. Young ones also have a difficult time expressing their feelings. That is why discipline needs to be a priority. You need to find a discipline technique that works for your children and family. For us time-outs work the best. I think of discipline as a teaching tool that helps show our children what is expected of them and what they are not allowed to do. It’s not fun and it’s not easy but it is most definitely worth it. It gives a child a clear picture. When you are lax on discipline or not on the same page as your spouse it sends mixed messages to your children. First state what is expected of them to your  children and what will happen if a certain behavior continues and then FOLLOW through. If there is no follow through then you are simply wasting your time. Children will quickly realize that you are not serious and do what they want anyway. I do want to say that when it comes to discipline you should always make sure that the underlying cause of misbehavior is not because the child is hungry or tired. Like I stated earlier it’s hard for small children to behave if they aren’t getting adequate rest and it’s really not fair for us to expect them to because it is our job to make sure they are getting rest to begin with. I have recently listened to an excellent podcast on discipline by the Busy Mom. You can find that link here.

  • Allow them to be children.

Don’t put too much pressure on children. Allow them to be able to play and get dirty. Allow them to use their imaginations and just be. Not everything has to be about learning. Because children learn from everything, everywhere anyway. Trying to push them to do something early just because you want bragging rights to a smart child or being constantly on their backs will only discourage them from learning naturally and enjoying life and being a child. They are only children for so long then they grow up and have to deal with all kinds of yucky adult things. So allow them to just be little. Don’t put pressure on them to be bigger or more grown up than they are.

  • Explain things on their level & talk to them like a regular person. 

I put these together because I feel like they go hand in hand. Children need guidance but if you don’t explain things to them on a level that they will understand then it will simply go over their heads. I certainly don’t mean to engage in baby talk with them though. That is one thing I never did and never will. My Mamaw used to always say “talk to children like you would an adult because they are just little people.” And they are. They desire to learn. So talk to them. Explain things to them. When our oldest was a bit younger I would constantly get told how amazed people were that she was speaking so well for her age. Now I get told “how smart” she is all the time. Yes she is very smart. She is also determined to learn. She is determined to accomplish things and she’s brave enough to go and figure things out. Yes she is naturally smart. However I contribute a lot of her smarts to how we are raising her and her sister. From the time they are born we talk to them as though we are talking to another adult. We describe things to them. We explain situations to them. We converse with them. We also encourage them. They learn quickly that they are smart and can accomplish so much. They also learn that mommy and daddy believe in them and think their existence is a vital part to our family. It gives them courage.

Now like I stated earlier I am definitely not an expert on parenting. However, these are several things I have learned in the past four years that help me create a peaceful life for my children and help me teach them how to be able to choose peace over chaos. I am sure there are several more things I will learn throughout my years of parenting! If there is something you do to create a peaceful life for your children that you would like to share please comment below!

Until next time,

Jenna Jury

Peaceful Marriage

Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family.             Peaceful Life. Part three.

Peaceful Marriage 

Today I want to talk about having a peaceful marriage and how it contributes to having an overall peaceful family and peaceful life. If you have not been following along with my current series Peaceful Home. Peaceful Family. Peaceful Life. you can read the first two posts here:

Part 1 when you have to make the hard decisions.

Part 2 creating a peaceful home.
My goal as a homemaker, wife and mom has always been to create a peaceful atmosphere where my family, the ones I love the most, can come in and just forget all about the outside world. I have learned many lessons since becoming a wife about how to create a peaceful atmosphere. I have learned that it starts within yourself before you can begin to create a peaceful atmosphere in your home. You have to have a peaceful mind first. Another lesson I have learned is that in order for my home to be peaceful my marriage must be peaceful. But how do I do that? Marriage is the union of two very different people in most cases. How do you take those two very different personalities, with different needs, desires, quirks, and upbringings and still create a peaceful marriage and home life? It may seem impossible to some but it’s not and I want to share with you how my husband and I achieve a peaceful marriage despite our differences.

If you know me and my husband well, you know that we have a very peaceful and fun marriage. It’s not because we are anything alike or even that we had similar upbringings. Actually we both had  very different upbringings and our personalities are nowhere near similar. He is outgoing and talkative. Me not so much. He can’t sit still and I love “my down time.” He is such a morning person it can be nauseating. I can’t function unless I have had at least two cups of coffee. But despite our differences our marriage is strong and peaceful. How? There are several things we do to ensure peace within our marriage. Some of them we have done from the beginning. Others we have learned the hard way throughout it. Below are ways we keep peace within our marriage.

  • Make decisions together

When I married my husband, I vowed to share my life with him. We decided that we were in this thing called life together. Since we are in it together, doesn’t it make sense to make decisions together? I have heard many people say that the decision is their decision and their spouse can get over it. Well good for you. Let me know how your marriage is doing in about six months and then we will see if you feel the same way. Decisions, especially big decisions should be made together because it doesn’t just affect you. Every decision you make affects someone else by default. You may not see how it affects them but it does. And often times our spouse may see something that we don’t see and it can be useful to have their wisdom when making a decision. I touched more on this in safe guarding my marriage. 

  • Discuss any decisions with your spouse

Okay so I know that I just said to make decisions with your spouse. And you should make decisions with your spouse. But there are some things that we decide on our own like activities we may do with the kids or going out with our friends. Now please don’t get me wrong. My husband and I are very considerate of one another and we never tell each other what we can or cannot do. If my husband wants to do something and asks me “if I care” I always say “well that’s a silly question, you’re a grown man you can do whatever you want” and vice versa.  But I always run my decisions by my husband just to make sure he’s okay with them. Maybe he had something else planned or maybe he wanted some alone time with me or to do something with the kids. It’s always a good idea to make sure you keep an open line of communication with your spouse. It really will save you from misunderstandings and silly arguments in the future.

  • Keep arguments between you and your spouse

Speaking of arguments. I know I said my husband and I have a very peaceful marriage but that doesn’t mean it isn’t without fault. We do have our occasional argument. But when we do argue we try our very best to keep those arguments to ourselves. We don’t allow our families to see us arguing because it may cause them to feel awkward or it may make them feel as though they can insert their two cents into our marriage and that’s one place our family’s two cents is never allowed. We also do our best never to argue in front of our children. Children need to know their home life is secure and peaceful. Arguing in front of children will make them feel turmoil and uncertainty. Even if you know that your marriage is secure, your child may not. In order to maintain peace for them it is important to keep arguments private.

  • Let your spouse be themselves and enjoy hobbies

I have had a couple friends tell me that some of their friends think it is weird or not good that their husbands play video games or hang out with friends  while playing these video games. First of all- what?? Second of all, here is how I see it. My mom used to tell me that she would much rather her husband be playing video games than be out at a bar late at night. Don’t you have a hobby that you enjoy? Reading? Shopping? Coffee with friends? Allow your husband to have a hobby that he enjoys. Something that he can do to get away from the busyness of life and stress of work. Yes I love my husband and I love my children but sometimes I need to do something for me. Why is he any different?

  • Don’t nag 

Proverbs 27:15 says the nagging wife is like a dripping faucet. Ouch. I don’t want to be compared to an annoying, dripping faucet do you? I try to steer clear of asking my husband to do something over and over. If there is something that needs to be done and I can do it myself then I do. But if it is something only he can do then I will ask him once and he always gets to it whenever he is able. He doesn’t need me to constantly remind him of something. I am not his mother and he is not my child. I have heard some women tell their husbands how to dress or do their hair. I think that is absurd. Most people learn to dress themselves at a very young age. Chances are your spouse did as well and they don’t need your help. I never tell my husband what to do or how to do something. There may be some things that he does that I am not particularly fond of. For example; the way my spouse loads the dishwasher is completely different than how I load it. I strategically load it to make everything fit and make sure as much as I can get in there gets in it. My husband on the other hand will not load it completely full. He hates doing the dishwasher. That’s okay. Instead of nagging him to do it the way I like, I just do it myself. It gets done the way I like when I do it and then my husband doesn’t have to do something he hates while listening to me nag him. Everyone wins. Please remember your spouse is your partner not your child.

  • Keep everyone else out of your marriage

I touched base on this earlier but it is so important to a peaceful marriage that I want to talk about it again. My marriage consists of two people. My husband and myself. My parents aren’t in my marriage, my friends aren’t in my marriage, my siblings aren’t in my marriage, etc. It’s me and him. But sometimes there are people in our lives that’s just won’t stay out of our marriages. Maybe they won’t stop cutting down your spouse or pointing out their flaws. Maybe they know about past arguments or mistakes and won’t let them go. Maybe they won’t stop trying to insert themselves into your discussions or decisions that are between you and your spouse. My mom gave me some sound advice before I got married and I never forgot it. She said after you get married please don’t tell me anything that you and your husband disagree or argue about. Keep the private things private. It is hard for a parent to stay neutral. It is hard for any family member really. So in order to make it easier for our family members and friends it is important to keep them out of your marriage. How do you do that though? I was blessed with understanding parents and family members who keep their two cents to themselves, at least when it comes to my marriage with my husband. But what if you have a parent or family member or friend who just won’t stay out? First bring it to God in prayer. Ask him for guidance and wisdom when it comes that person. Secondly keep anything that is private and between you and your spouse out of any conversation with that person. It may be hard at first but eventually it will get easier. If it doesn’t seem as though that person is getting the hint, maybe they keep trying to push themselves into your marriage, then it would be wise to have a mature sit down with them about your boundaries. My husband and I have had sit downs with people before about boundaries. I can tell you that although the conversation is difficult at the time in the long run they are always worth it and almost always create a much better relationship all around.

  • Let the little things go

We all have quirks. There are things about me that my husband doesn’t really care for and vice versa. For example, right  now as I am typing this there is a laundry basket of clothes in our room that has been sitting there for about five days. No joke. I hate putting away my clothes and if I can put it off I will. This drives my husband batty. He is organized and likes everything neat and tidy. But our room right now is anything but tidy. And it is completely my fault. I know it is. Instead of nagging me or getting upset that I am unorganized or messy he just lets it go. Something that we both tell each other when we joke about our quirks is “you knew who I was when you married me.” And it’s true. So those little things that may be annoying you but honestly don’t really matter in the long run, learn to let them go and just enjoy your spouse. You will invite peace in to your marriage when you do.

  • Have fun together 

I married a very funny man. Well at least in my opinion. He makes me laugh on a daily basis. If we know how to do anything it is have fun together. Now I don’t mean we go out all the time because we don’t. But we do enjoy each other’s company. We appreciate the time we have together. We make memories with one another and with our children. Those are the moments that I look forward to and that really create a strong connection and bond. When you have fun together it also allows stress to leave and puts back into perspective what truly matters.

When you let go of all the little things that don’t matter in the long run, when you stop nagging and start appreciating, when you love your spouse and your marriage then you are able to invite peace in and a peaceful marriage is an beautiful thing you guys. It truly is.

Until next time

Jenna Jury