Monday, December 8, 2014

Contemplation and Books


I received a couple dozen really sweet notes this last week in my email inbox asking after our family and wondering where I disappeared to and if we were ok.  

We are alive and well! 

There is no extraordinary reason why I've not blogged but I did want to back away for a little and take some time for quiet contemplation.

That sounds dramatic, I don't intend it to be, I promise!

While our addition was being completed I stepped away from blogging except sporadically because I had to with all that was going on here.  (I didn't think it was going to be fun, but heck, I will honestly tell you that if I could foresee the stress involved (mostly because of bad contractors) I'd have never done it.  That's not to say I don't love it and the space isn't beautifully useful for our family, just to say...it was maddening.  I'm going to stop myself there, because I've come to peace with it all, and don't want to dredge up my anger again.

After it was all said and done, I needed to regain my equilibrium, and center my mind, and FOCUS on my family.  I felt like I had lost months with my children, a beautiful summer, because of this project and the energy it required of me.  I wrote this a few years ago-it was time for a major "regroup" here-we were all craving it, me especially.

But during that stepping-away time, I also began to really have some strong feelings about blogging our family journal-I have written about this before so I won't bore, but as my children have grown, as I've seen the effects of social media, as the internet has changed (and maybe it hasn't but it seems so to me from when I first began) I wanted to listen to these unsettling feelings I kept pushing away over the last year or so.  Since I am an overthinker by nature, I had a high time of overthinking-going back and forth, waiting for a sign or a new direction.

In the end I decided to take it slow and play it safe.  I tried a few different things (concerning ads and comments, wondering if that would suffice) but I still had those nagging feelings.  I decided, in the end, it is best for me to make our family journal a private keepsake for Jeff and I and my children, and I transferred those personal posts to a private blog.  It feels really right to me.

But I also love THIS place, whatever it might become, if it becomes anything at all other than what it is.  I love writing, when I can find the time-without pressure.  I love putting my thoughts down on "paper" -somehow that is all the reminder I need of the way I desire to parent in a culture that is constantly telling me I must do, be, want more.  I've heard from so many lovely readers who have felt the same as me-sometimes it's nice to hear we have companionship when we feel like we are swimming against the grain.  

But...Do I have the mental energy and the time for it now?  I don't know.  Can I write and maintain that balance of authenticity and privacy?  I don't know.  Have I said everything I want to say and will just constantly repeat myself?  I don't know.  I can get really self-conscious about it if I let myself.  I don't have all the answers, really in the grand scheme, even with 20 years under my belt-I'm a "new parent"-what do I know? And writing is also a habit for me-once I get out of the habit, it's difficult for me to step back in.  

So that is where I am at...just thinking on things when I have the time, and trying hard to be present in real life because that is always my priority, especially at this time of year that requires more of us moms.

Meanwhile...

...I've also been reading...like a fiend during nap time, when I used to blog, and it puts me to sleep at night.  I have so many books to share, but I am over the moon in love with Jane Kirkpatrick's writing and I can't get enough.

For the past years I've been "ordering" books through the library, but it was never really working for me-they'd all come in at once, or I'd forget to pick them up and they'd be sent back.  I decided I was going to spend the $4 most of the books I want cost when ordered used, and I now have a shelf of excellence waiting for me-no pressure, deadlines, disappointment.

Have you ever read Jane Kirkpatrick?  The most lovely well written historical fiction, all pioneer times, all about strong, strong women.  Some of the books are part of a series-this one above is three books in one, which accounts for its hefty nature, and my sore, but muscular wrists. :)  I am trying to pace myself, because I know once I'm finished with my Jane Kirkpatrick binge, it's going to feel like I am saying goodbye to a dear treasured friend.  She, alas, can't write faster than I'm soaking up her gift of storytelling.

80 comments :

  1. Sarah it' s so good fo read a post from you. I have loved your level headed, grounded writing for years, a true inspiration for a soon to be mum of three. Appreciate your great posts on babies, and loss, parenting and of course your classics on organisation. Anytime you feel you can write on here know that you are a huge support to Mums like myself and you are such a talented writer Xx

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sarah it' s so good fo read a post from you. I have loved your level headed, grounded writing for years, a true inspiration for a soon to be mum of three. Appreciate your great posts on babies, and loss, parenting and of course your classics on organisation. Anytime you feel you can write on here know that you are a huge support to Mums like myself and you are such a talented writer Xx

    ReplyDelete
  3. I've read just about every post for the last four or five years and don't know that I've ever commented, but wanted to thank you for writing this.

    I've gone from being a mother to one to a mother to four (and one on the way) and they need me more. I don't share much about our family anymore but I think something in me wants to hear that it's okay to be done with blogging. I crave that refocus. I just ordered "Mitten Strings for God" and am looking forward to digging in. You're in my prayers, hugs to you all!

    ReplyDelete
  4. It's so nice to hear that all is well. I can totally relate to both the stepping back to live life and also the need to keep private family things private. Blessings to you and your dear family this Advent!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I completely understand your decision to keep the blogging about your family private. I have a blog that isn't private, but I don't tell people about it and I don't post on facebook when I update it. It's mainly for my children's grandparents since they live far away, and close friends know about it. I also have it set up so it can't be found with a google search. At this point it's basically a scrapbook of our lives. I haven't actually done any scrapbooking since my first kid was born nearly three years ago, and I figure that when I finally get around to scrapbooking (maybe in twenty years!), I'll have everything documented.

    I want to let you know that I absolutely ADORE your writing and your insight to motherhood. I've told you before via email, but you're the first person I look to for advice when it comes to mothering. I don't have very good examples of mothering within my own family, so I really cherish all of your thoughts on mothering in general. So I hope you keep up your generic parenting posts (like your thoughts on breastfeeding, technology use, parenting books that are helpful, recipes, how to feed a large family, etc.). And of course I hope you still write about things non-specific to your children. :)

    Thank you for everything!

    ReplyDelete
  6. So nice to hear from you Sarah. Glad things are better now that the addition is complete. I can totally relate to stepping back and refocusing on things. Thanks for the book recommendation. Have a Merry Christmas!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Seriously, Sarah-- know what a blessing your writing has been. I've been following along here since I was pregnant with my now five year old and I have always been SO THANKFUL for you. Merry Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I popped over today to look over your Christmas gift posts as I've used them in the past and loved them!
    I so appreciate your authenticity as a person, wife and mother. I love reading that you had a feeling about what your family needs and are following through with it--as strange as it sounds, it gives me permission to do the same! You're wonderful and I wish you and your family all the best!
    Jennie

    ReplyDelete
  9. Aaaah, what a relief to see your blog post today! I have been missing you and worrying. So glad all is well with you and yours!! When you are away, you are sorely missed. Our youngest daughters are only a month or so apart, and I have so missed seeing Janey's smiling face, too :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love your blog, Sarah, but I understand the privacy issues. My blog is private for the same reasons. I hope you'll still post here from time to time, but even if you don't I will always be thankful for the things you've shared here. You are the real deal. Thank you for courageously sharing your truth.

    Merry Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh, I was so excited to see you back that I commented already before reading your post :/ In this crazy world of the interwebz, these are probably very wise changes you're making. And while I will so miss reading your personal journey, it's certainly understandable. I look forward to whatever bits of wisdom you share with us readers! Who knows but what this decision won't be the example some young mom might need to keep her own family safe! Walk on in the light you have and know that you're an inspiration to so many moms!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Sarah, it's so good to hear your voice. We were going through an awful renovation at the same time. Mine is basically done, but it leveled me. I never realized how disruptive and upsetting it can all be. Grateful for it, but so grateful that it's done.

    I'm going to pick up the book. Historical fiction is my favorite genre. When you finish your stack, let me know and I'll recommend more.

    You brighten my day whenever you post, so even if it's twice a year, I'll keep reading. Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Eeeeek----I'm so glad you're back!! I've been checking your blog everyday to see if there's a new post, so I feel almost giddy today to see this!! Love your writing. You know how you feel about Jane Kirkpatrick? Well, that's how I feel about reading your blog!! Yippeee!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Sarah, I wanted to let you know that I TOTALLY understand your thoughts on social media, and keeping your private lives... just that - private! I have a blog but do my best to keep people's faces, names, and places out of it as much as possible, just because with all the social media problems today, holding onto as much privacy freedom as possible is really important to our family. I high-five you girl! I will continue to follow your posts, whenever you are able to make them - this is what blogging should be, fun and inspirational, and not such a drag! Blessing to you and yours :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. Sarah I am so glad you have written. I have looked at my blog feed with eager anticipation almost daily waiting to hear from you. Much as you expressed the treasured friend you will miss in your books, you are that to me and probably many others. I certainly want you to do what is best for your family, but as strange as it seems you feel like family to us as well. I look forward to seeing what you are putting together for a meal, how you threw out unwanted stuff for the 40 day challenge, and your minimalist ways inspire me to remove clutter. You have to find the balance that works for you and we certainly understand, but know that we adore you and your family and feel like we are enjoying this time with you. I have vied hundreds of blogs, but for some reason yours is the one I go to time and time again and read archives and looks at photos. It just feels like home and is familiar in much the same way that I am sure it is for your real family. I hope to see the renovation and see what great things you are making for the holidays. I am not quite ready for our time together to end, but if it does please know you have made a positive impact on more than just those who know you in real life. Much love and many blessings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said. I feel the exact same way. Very, very sad to say goodbye, but blessed for the years I was able to read and enjoy this encouraging blog. Best wishes always to Sarah and her family.

      Delete
  16. so glad all is well!! you have been missed!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Glad you are just feeling the need to breathe and not ill or going through something terrible! I have been wondering how you were!! I totally get where you are...time goes by so quickly and we have to absorb every moment with our family that we can~~ and if not continuing this is best for your family, then drop it with our blessing!! I will miss your updates and watching your children grow along with mine..but you have to do what the Lord lays on your heart and what's right for you and yours!! Blessings on each of you this holiday season..let us know what you definitely decide!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. So glad to this post and to know that all is well with you and yours. I've admired how you conduct your marriage and raise your children. As a divorced empty nester, it gives me hope and comfort to see commitment in marriage, commitment in parenting, and families that are whole, thriving, and loving. I so hope you'll keep blogging, Sarah, because your words and thoughts reach many backgrounds and ages, many different parenting stages, and I also get such enthusiasm and focus to keep my home orderly and to live more simply when I read your entries about how you like your home to run. I've passed along countless posts of yours to my daughter and to other friends about babies, being a mother, cooking, and keeping a busy family schedule coordinated. All that said, you must follow your heart and do what's best for you, your husband, and your children concerning the blog. I would miss my Clover Lane time immensely, but I would move ahead with tons of great advice and projects and feeling so grateful for all the good you have taught and reinforced. Happy holidays!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Sarah, I'm so grateful for this post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I have deep respect for you, and especially what you wrote on this post. Over the years you have been such a great "sounding board" for me as I navigate being a stay-at-home mama. I have felt encouragement and guidance, laughter and light, reality checks and reminders of thanksgiving and joy. Thank you for your influence in my parenting journey. I hope that you will pop on here to share thoughts like these occasionally, but understand whatever choice you make. Thank you and I wish your family the best.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I am so happy you posted! I was like Christmas Morning seeing a new post! I always turn to your blog for advice when I am mulling over ideas/decisions with my children. Thank you so much for being inspired what you have written. I love your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I miss your blog SOOOO much! I have learned so much from you. You truly are a light in a world where so many families are falling apart and turning away from what is right. I made my blog private over the summer, so I completely understand where you are coming from, but you are SO wise and I loved when you shared that wisdom! You are a bright light for so many mommas. We NEED you!!! If time allows, I hope you'll still post. I'd love to see your new addition. And hear about Janey Pants!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Sarah ~ so nice to see a post from you. I am one of your long time readers who worry when you don't post. {and so glad to know all is well} You know, the internet is a strange and wonderful place. I agree with you that it is a whole different animal than it was a few years ago. And so, on that note, I totally get wanting to keep your posts private.
    I just want you to know that I have enjoyed your writing and your thoughts on motherhood. I am a mom of grown kids, but still found your posts helpful to my grandchildren. I have bought a few of your recommended toys for my grand boys and they have been great hits.
    Thanks for all of your posts and I pray that your family continues to grow and prosper. Maybe a little post now and then:-)
    Have a very Merry Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Although I completely understand the need for privacy, You need to know how much I have missed your posts!!! You have calmed my heart so many times over the years and it is so refreshing to hear someone out there still holds dear the values of family and God. You have a beautiful family and it is because of your beautiful heart. Please don't stop writing...even if it is just once a month...the world needs to hear it...you are sharing and defending so many good things in the words you give to the world...the world of warrior moms :) Thank you and God Bless.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Amen to all this. You are the best, Sarah! I'm so grateful for your wisdom and beautiful thoughts. Love, Shawni

    ReplyDelete
  25. Amen to all this. You are the best, Sarah! I'm so grateful for your wisdom and beautiful thoughts. Love, Shawni

    ReplyDelete
  26. Sarah, so nice to see this post! I also find it hard to stay focused and present with my kids if I blog or spend time on social media, so I just mostly stay off. Some people can handle it, but I know I can't! There is something freeing about not being tied to it too. At the same time, I sure appreciate you and a few other favorites who blog and share your insight and wisdom and like-minded mothering! Glad you're all well (and thanks for the book recommendations and reminding me a kitchen remodel can wait!)

    ReplyDelete
  27. I have missed your posts! you and another blogger family took a break and I was so so sad about it. At least you've come back and hopefully stick around. I read some of your posts to my husband and share with him what an inspiration you are to my motherhood. Thank you for sharing whatever little you can with us <3

    ReplyDelete
  28. So glad to see you back! Like everyone else, I completely agree with the desires of your heart for your family. I hope you'll continue to keep us organized with all of your wonderful ideas and tips, and I hope you'll share a few snippets of the new addition with us too. I'm sure it's lovely! Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Such a lovely surprise to see a post from you this morning, like a little early gift for myself from you. Enjoy your Christmas with your children and extended family as you celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. I hope for more little treasures like today's post from time to time :).

    ReplyDelete
  30. Whatever your final decision, I will deeply miss your posts as your voice is one that inspires me, makes me feel less alone when I have said no to things parents all around me said yes to, and you gave me a glimpse of how to navigate the teen years with grace. I completely can understand your desire to protect the privacy of your family and to guard your own precious time as a mom. It feels to me the time is just racing by. I will refer back to some of your posts so I hope you leave the space intact even if you don't continue. I just reread the post inspired by Erma Bombeck. You have a beautiful gift and know it has been very much appreciated - more than you may ever know. Enjoy Christmas and your family during this beautiful season.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Sarah, Many, many times in the past years that i have been reading your blog I felt that the Holy Spirit was working through you because you wrote exactly what I needed to hear at the time. I have missed your posts but I am so happy you posted again. Have a wonderful Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I'm also a devoted reader and not one that comments often. I have so enjoyed reading your posts and appreciate the simple lifestyle you are trying to achieve. I'm 56 and still trying to get there! I made my blog private a few weeks ago for the same reasons you stated. I do think that blogging and online media has changed from what it started out as. Thank you for your timely post and your organizational posts, as well. I usually send them on to my daughters, too. I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas!!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Sarah,

    you know after our lengthy discussions on this topic that I'm with you completely, as a blogger and a mother. Like everyone else here, I love your blog, your insights and your wisdom and look forward to everything you write. (I can't say that about many blogs--yours is most definitely, the one I look forward to the most!)

    I, too, have taken a step back--took a blog break and deactivated my Facebook account--just to be quiet for awhile. It has been refreshing and enlightening.

    I feel like we need to do this every once in a while to reevaluate and refocus. For me, it's helped me understand some of the roots of my anxiety surrounding blogging and social media. It also helped me get clarity on why I write and my responsibility to use that gift to encourage others.

    I pray you find that wonderful, peaceful balance of being able to use your gift to encourage others (okay, me!) while still maintaining your priorities at home AND protecting the privacy of your beautiful family. I believe it's possible.

    Have a lovely Christmas.

    Sandy

    ReplyDelete
  34. I completely support your decision. I'm sure you don't feel you "owe" your readers anything, but I just wanted to say a sincere, quick post to your readers a couple months ago would have been appreciated. Just letting us know you were taking a break. You can feel the love and locality in your comments; everyone wondering if everything was ok. Just to stop blogging and keep your loyal readers hanging left me feeling a little perturbed , which is something I never felt about this blog.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Sarah, you were so kind to respond to an email I sent you, so I will not take much more of your time. I am just as thrilled as everyone lose to see you write again! Can I throw out one suggestion? How about an "Ask Sarah" advice blog? Readers email questions about parenting, etc. and you respond with advice. That way it is less personal but we get your great wisdom. Happy holidays to your family!

    Jen from RI

    ReplyDelete
  36. Advent blessings to you and your family💜💜💗💜! Happy to hear from you this morning.

    ReplyDelete
  37. HI, I think you are wise in taking your time and deciding how to continue writing. I had a book club in my home for 5 years and had to stop. It was just time. I enjoy your writing and love when you share books, etc. I hope your family has a wonderful Christmas! Enjoy your home!

    ReplyDelete
  38. So glad to read from your blog again! You've been missed :) I am excited to read that book... I love those strong, fearless pioneer women. Have a wonderful week!

    ReplyDelete
  39. You have been such an inspiration to me. I totally respect your need for privacy but hope you will continue to post what you can. Blessings to you and your family.

    ReplyDelete
  40. you have been such an inspiration to me as a mother. there aren't too many large families in my area and i always felt like it was nice to refer to someone who was so level headed and had the same thoughts on family as me.

    i total understand you wanting to be more private, especially as your kids grow. i don't blog, and all my accounts are private. but, from a selfish stand point, i would still love your recipes, decorating updates, organizing advice, gift ideas, and general insights....with still keeping the rest private. i.e. no pictures of the kids and not too many details about them. this is a total selfish want, but i would hate for you to disappear completely with all you have to offer.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Sarah, I was so pleased to see your post today and completely understand about the need to step back and make changes. However, I wanted you to know that while I have never commented here, I so appreciate your insight as an experienced mother and one that chooses to stay committed to her faith. I recently had my third baby and I found myself going through your old posts about mothering, breast feeding and sleeping insights - just so that I could know I am not alone. Young mothers need your voice during this day and time that we live in. There are not enough mothers demonstrating and teaching/ mentoring younger moms and while I don't expect you to take on that role, your blog does so much to encourage those who are struggling with the incredible task of motherhood. Please know that your wisdom is an encouragement and is much appreciated!! And we love your book recommendations too! :)

    ReplyDelete
  42. I have loved reading your blog for years. I am a relatively "new" mom (in the grand scheme of things), my oldest being just 7. I have gleaned SO much wisdom from you, particularly regarding motherhood, and you have always given off such a vibe of contentment that has spoken volumes to me. I, of course, will miss reading about your family (your youngest and my youngest are just a few days apart in age!), but I understand 100% why you want to protect them. Looking forward to any future posts you may make, as always. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

    ReplyDelete
  43. Glad you are back. I kept checking...I love your thoughts and the way you are so firmly for deliberate, consistent mothering. Your blog is a good place for Stay at home moms to get a little reinforcement. Thanks for that.
    Love Jane Kirkpatrick! I live in the Willamette Valley and will head through Aurora on my way to an ortho appointment. Love the series about Madame Dorian. I believe I've read everything she's written.
    Keep up the good work! We appreciate your voice.

    ReplyDelete
  44. I've missed your blogging but I definitely feel as though I am in the same place as you are regarding how I feel about blogging. The technology we are surrounded with is so hard to find a balance in. I often wonder how my children will react to my blog when they are older. Regardless, your blog has always been so encouraging to me as a mother, I hope you will continue to pop in and give some nuggets of wisdom.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Hi Sarah, I'm a Mother of 5, all under age 12 and have enjoyed your writing for years. It makes sense to me and encourages me. I have also gotten great ideas from you! I am glad to hear about your book rec. "Kristen Lavransdatter" (trilogy in the new translation) was great to me...excellent writing and fascinating about the middle ages. Best wishes to you! I will miss reading from you! Mary Brooke PS, we love the learning and family life with homeschooling

    ReplyDelete
  46. Wow, such a blessed relief to see a post from you!!! I've been reading your blogs for years and have always walked away thinking about things differently. You can be such an inspiration with your words! You would be so greatly missed if you stopped! There was even a time you emailed me in support of an issue and I will never forget that! I wish you and your family the merriest of Christmases!!! Hope you'll stick around!!

    ReplyDelete
  47. Good to see you here! I kept coming back to check on you! Your posts about the best toys and gifts are great references. I went to paperback swap right after I read your post and ordered a Jane Kirkpatrick book. Thanks for the recommendation!

    ReplyDelete
  48. I have always loved your posts. They have always come at the best time for me, when I'm feeling lost and at sea in this motherhood business. You have always helped to keep me centered and more grounded. I understand your wanting to keep your family life private, but I hope you can find a happy medium to help people like me with your continued posts. You are such an inspiration to me, and I feel like I 'need' your posts and advice in nearly all matters.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Sarah,

    As with so many others, I have come to value your blog. With the limited amount of time I have in my day (or the seemingly limited amount anyway) your blogs are ones that I treasure and read in my self imposed allotted time for internet usage. For myself, I would hope that you would continue to blog...BUT I understand, as a mother myself, your need to think about quitting. I would miss this blog terribly if you chose to give it up, but would understand completely.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Yeah! A post! Whew! I missed you Sarah! Glad you took time to regroup. You help me be a better mom! I totally understand how family is 1st! This is what makes you so special! May you have a wonderful Christmas season and be blessed always!

    ReplyDelete
  51. I am so glad to hear you are all well! If you decide to end your public blogging (and I will understand, though I will miss your posts), please consider leaving up the archives. I can't tell you how many times my kids have hit a new stage and I've thought, Oh, Sarah had a great point about this, and I have searched the blog and found inspiration. Thank you for sharing your hard-won wisdom with us all! Wishing you a wonder-full advent and Christmas season.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Hello! I've been wondering how you are doing too. I understand your thoughts about the blog. I would miss you so much (even though we do not know each other at all)! But I would understand. Best of luck deciding what to do. Have a wonderful Christmas season. Thanks for being a breathe of fresh air all these years.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Well I will say, that I have been frequently checking your blog for a new post for the last while. And I don't read blogs much anymore. But yours is one I always love to come to. Your voice on Mothering and Parenthood resonate with me. And the photos of your charming home and cute neighborhood draw me in like a Norman Rockwell painting. And to be totally honest, Christmas doesn't feel like Christmas without a cute baking/gift idea/ordinary day post from Clover Lane! No pressure :) I understand where you need to take things. It's hard in our world today that we need to take these precautions. I get it! I too often find myself thinking of an old post of yours and go back to reference it! I love that you don't get caught up with all the things parents get involved in these days and stick to your old fashioned roots of parenting. It is so refreshing! I have followed you since Patrick was a new baby and I think of your family often. Thank you for sharing what you have! I wish you all the best!

    ReplyDelete
  54. Your posts are always some of my favorites. I always feel so buoyed up by the things that you write about parenting and being an intentional mother. Thank you for sharing and I do completely understand your choice to go private- I have done that too.
    You are such a light in the dark world and I appreciate all that you share. Have a Merry Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
  55. I've wondered how you are doing plenty of times and am happy to see an update. I should pull away from the computer more and get back into book reading. I hope you don't put pressure on yourself regarding posting....just go with the flow. I'll miss the updates on your kiddos but totally understand your reasoning for some privacy.

    ReplyDelete
  56. i totally understand your feelings, but am so sad you'll be changing things up and maybe not posting as much. i've loved your blog for so many years and have been lost not having your daily posts to come to each morning! you give a voice to moms, like you, who want simplicity and tradition back in parenting and child rearing! have a wonderful holiday season!

    ReplyDelete
  57. you will be missed but completely understand -
    if you have time could you tell us how you do your private blog

    ReplyDelete
  58. So glad to hear from you - glad to hear you are all doing well. Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts and life on this blog - I really enjoy your posts!

    ReplyDelete
  59. Sarah, long time reader (for years!) and mama to a bigger family. I just wanted to tell you while I deeply respect your choice, it's important that you know the effect your writing has had on my family. I was raised by a mother who deeply loved me, but not mothering. I knew I wanted something different for my family, but as a new mom I had no idea where to start. As I read your thoughts, I realized you were writing out loud what the Lord was doing deep in my soul. Simple living, children and family focused, disciplined and Christ centered home with a focus on slowing down and homemaking... A 'professional' mother. I consider you a mentor and it's important that you know you (and others) have changed the course of my life (and my daughters lives) forever. A generation was changed here, in this space, during afternoon naptimes. So, whatever your long term decision, please know how deeply I have appreciated your wisdom and willingness to share your life and thoughts. The Internet can be a scary place, certainly, but I am so thankful you filled up a corner of it with good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love this comment and couldn't agree more!

      Delete
  60. I'll chime in to say I've missed you too :) I also deeply respect your wish to protect your family's privacy and to put your family's needs first. Your posts have long been a source of inspiration and comfort to me as I've navigated new motherhood, and have also given me the courage and confidence to make the decision with my husband to now stay at home with our kids. I'll miss your down to earth, no nonsense wisdom should you decide to stop blogging, but I am so very grateful for the wealth you have so generously shared. You've changed a lot of lives in a very good way!

    ReplyDelete
  61. I was so happy to see this post! I've been following you for about five years and appreciate your posts and your ideas on raising children. Although I am a grandmother of nine, I find your ways of raising children so refreshing and am sure you have influenced many young mothers. I always look forward to your Christmas toy suggestions, and have bought some of them every year for my grand children. I'm glad all is well with your family, but will miss hearing updates and seeing pictures.

    ReplyDelete
  62. Thank you for posting again; you have been missed! PLEASE continue to post what you feel comfortable with- your wisdom is appreciated. Would love to see some of your new addition- so sorry it was stressful, but I understand. We too dealt with horrible contractors this summer...it left me drained.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Thank you for posting again; you have been missed! PLEASE continue to post what you feel comfortable with- your wisdom is appreciated. Would love to see some of your new addition- so sorry it was stressful, but I understand. We too dealt with horrible contractors this summer...it left me drained.

    ReplyDelete
  64. I too, have been a reader of yours for many years. You have have inspired me as a Mother of 5 (13 years down to 2 years) in so many ways. I completely understand wanting to keep your family private. I do the same with my blog. Though your wisdom and counsel for Mother's of all stages and ages is so very needed this day in age!!!!! Whatever your decision, thank you for all you have shared with us!!!! Merry Christmas to you and your family :)

    ReplyDelete
  65. I too have missed your positive, sane posts. You helped me become better and see things in a different light. I have so appreciated your slow down wisdom. Repetition isn't boring but necessary to hold the course. Thank you for your example.

    ReplyDelete
  66. This is news that I understand completely your reasons for, and have told you HOW much I have loved reading your blog before via email and such....please move near me and mentor me!
    I will wait in hope for any more posts as you see fit :)
    And if you're now buying, here's a book I read recently and loved, Colm Toibin's 'Brooklyn'. It's historical fiction set in 1950s Ireland and New York. Based on your reading lists, I think you'd enjoy it!

    ReplyDelete
  67. I agree with everyone else who has already commented and I hope that you still continue to write but I admire that your putting the needs/privacy of your family first.

    I've been trying to find the words to say thank you since yesterday and I still am trying to find the words great enough to explain how thankful I am that you have opened your heart, your life, your family, and your experience to all of us.
    I found your blog 2 1/2 years ago when I just had my first son, was living miles from home as a pretty newly we'd in a military life. I was suffering from ppd and lonely. Your blog was the breath of fresh air I needed. Like many have said you truly add light to a sometimes dark world and you make us mothers believe we can do this, we are not alone and give us some tools to get through the day.
    Your posts have always seemed to come when I needed them most. There's many posts I've read and reread and reread again because they are filled with wisdom and beautifully written.
    I think it's amazing/admirable that you are not just trying to get posts to gain followers and that all of your posts are from your heart and not forced.
    I could go on and on but I just think you're an amazing mother/writer and I'm so grateful that you have chose to share some bits of your life and so many posts of wisdom.
    I respect you no matter what you choose to do with your blog but I selfishly hope you keep your old posts on here so that many mothers can read this for years and years because it will forever be the best blog and better then any parenting book. If you wrote a book, I'd buy it :p.
    Anyways thank you for sharing with all of us!

    ReplyDelete
  68. missed your posts too but as a mum to 6 and a blogger I know where I'd rather spend my time and it's not on the computer so totally understand from here.
    take care and God blessxx

    ReplyDelete
  69. I just have loved reading your blog and have missed it! I too am a mama and I get it! Thanks for keeping us loyal readers in the loop and hope to read more from you!

    ReplyDelete
  70. Long long time reader here. I used to read probably 8-10 blogs regularly but I cut back to 1-2 regularly and yours was always the first I would read. You are a light in this dark world Sarah. Your values and your commitment to Motherhood, marriage and family are such a necessary voice today. I hope you will keep writing because you have given me so much wisdom and insight over the years as well as courage to stand for family values. Thank you for your influence on me and my family!

    ReplyDelete
  71. Thank you so much for writing. I have been a reader of yours for about 5 years now. You were a great voice for me when I was a new Mom and then a Mom of two who felt the calling to slow down and stay at home with my kids. In a country and society where that is not popular. Thank you for your uncommon words and for being a proponent of slowing down to savor life. I understand your wishes to keep your family life private. I do so hope that you continue to write in some fashion. I really relate to your posts about managing a home - 40 bags in 40 days, cleaning, recipes, how to manage all aspects of the home - realistically. I absolutely love your posts about simple days at home with your kids. I too am an avid reader and love your posts about what you are reading as well. If you continue on with these type of posts, I would be SO thankful. I am now a young-ish SAHM of 3 - and your words have gotten me through many a day. THANK YOU for contributing - your words do make a difference. Wishing you and your family a very happy holiday.

    ReplyDelete
  72. Sarah, I recently read this article"= about discussing pregnancies in the first trimester. https://medium.com/the-archipelago/im-pregnant-so-why-cant-i-tell-you-271659d03f36

    Given your personal experiences, what advice do you have to a young woman starting a family? How did your opinions about discussing pregnancy in the first trimester change over time? Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  73. I have missed your blogging!!! That said - I totally "get" where you're at. I also have a personal blog, my family diary.

    I do hope you'll continue to share parenting wisdom - when appropriate. I cherish so many of your thoughts on the subject.

    And yes, love Jane Kirkpatrick :)

    ReplyDelete
  74. I was so happy to read a new post from you. I love your writing and your honest (and dare I say "old-fashioned" and mean that with absolute admiration) approach to motherhood. I have shared your blog with my young daughters-in-law. You have said what I wish could but as the mother-in-law understand it could be considered overstepping. Beyond your parenting musings, I have found your Christmas gift posts so helpful with our four young granddaughters. And I have never been disappointed with any of your book recommendations. I understand the need to be more present in life and applaud your decision. But I selfishly hope you will continue with your bits of parenting wisdom and your wonderful reading selections. Thank you, thank you for all you have shared. And now I'm off to Amazon to find me some Jane Kirkpatrick! All the best to you.

    ReplyDelete
  75. I just wanted to say thank you for everything you have taken the time to share. I have been inspired and empowered by every post, and am so grateful there are women in this world still willing to stand up and say what no one else will say. As a newish mother without a living mother I have felt blessed by your words on many occasions. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  76. Dear Sarah,
    As everyone has said, I understand and respect your decision. I do feel like I am losing a dear friend though. I have laughed and learned so much from your sharing. Thank you. Best wishes to you and your family!

    ReplyDelete
  77. Not to change the subject, but I would love to see pictures of your home renovation.

    ReplyDelete
  78. Sarah! I was so happy to read your post. I so connect with your thoughts on parenting and motherhood and slowing down. And having lost my mother too early a few years ago while my first born was just one year old, I have found your blog a wonderful touch stone to connect and find "answers" to some of my motherhood questions. Thank you for your kind words and sharing your heart. I wish your family a very Happy New Year and will love to read anytime you feel moved to write.

    ReplyDelete