Do you ever think back to the days when friendships seemed easy?
Alright, maybe they were never completely easy, we are women after all...but, perhaps a bit easier. Easier to tend to, to spend time on, to invest in...all making the friendships inherently more intimate and rich components of our lives.
Those were the days...the days before full-time jobs and kids and family obligations. The days when you could spend an entire afternoon at the beach reading a book (ahhh....sounds nice!), go see a movie on a whim, or spend frivolously on trendy clothing items or a fancy restaurant bills with your girlfriends at your side.
We had the time to invest in our friendships...Relationships become deeper for many reasons, but when all is said and done, it is time together, invested, that helped to grow the relationships.
And while I hadn't put a lot of thought and energy into how things might look differently in this area of my own life (I've merely continued on at the rapid pace of life I've been engaged in), I found it refreshing and encouraging to recently come across Mom Connection: Creating Vibrant Relationships in the Midst of Motherhood by Tracey Bianchi.
You can read Tracey's bio below, but all you really need to know is that she is a mom with three kids who gets where we are coming from. She gets the craziness, the multi-tasking, the challenges inherent, the distractions and all of the other reasons that we give for not investing more deeply in the relationships in our lives.
She also understands that despite all of those things it is the friendships, our marriages and connections within our communities that are incredibly important to making our lives deeper, not just wider.
Early on in the book she talks about identifying the natural rhythms in our lives-- and either embracing them or simplifying them in order to focus more intently on the world around us.
Should frantic be the norm? She asks.
No! I wanted to yell. Please tell me how to make it not feel frantic!
Mom Connection will take you on a journey toward celebrating and discovering the underlying rhythm of your life and how that rhythm pulls you into vibrant relationships. I hope you will discover that your unique situation and the details of your mothering journey can be lived in freedom, opening your life to relationships and transforming formerly lonely places. Gracefully engaging the people who cross your path rather than viewing them as tasks on a list. Investing in your community, fostering healthy marriages, and finding out that ultimately you are connected to a bigger dance (page 22).As idealistic as all that sounds, Bianchi manages to push the reader in that direction through her stories, humor and suggestions.
Each chapter ends with five "Mom-Tested Tips"-- things you can start to do now to foster the practices talked about in each chapter and then perhaps my favorite feature, a list at the end of each chapter called "Books, People, and Other Random Stuff" offering websites, book titles and other resources to help along the way.
And, if you're in MOPS, Mom Connection is next year's theme book-- I'm excited to have gotten a head start on processing some of the information in hopes that it will make next year's MOPS meetings that much more relevant.
To read more reviews or order a copy of the book you can check it out here on amazon...
And, because I've enjoyed the book so much, am a MOPS mom and advocate myself, and would love to pass on the love, I have one copy of this book to give away to one of you!!
To be entered leave a comment below telling us how you try to invest in the relationships in your life.
For extra entries (or just because you love me!) you can...
-click in the right sidebar to join my google friends network
-click on the Facebook icon above to like "Little Writer Momma" on Facebook
-or become a twitter friend (by clicking the Twitter link above)
Just leave another comment telling me you've done one or ALL of these things.
Not only will this give you an extra shot at the book, but it helps me stay more connected to ya'll!
Comments will close at midnight on Monday...Winner announced Tuesday!
Author Bio: Tracey Bianchi is an over-caffeinated, thirty-something living in a suburb near Chicago. She’s a sought after communicator and has contributed to a variety of publications and organizations from Sojourners to MOPS International. She is the author of Green Mama and has been an active speaker, writer and participant with MOPS for over seven years. She has three young children, a fabulous husband, and a goldfish named Stinky Pete. They live in the Chicago area where Tracey serves as a ministry leader at Christ Church of Oak Brook and maintains a freelance career that includes speaking and writing for a wide variety of organizations. She earned her M. Div. from Denver Seminary and needs a ton of coffee to make all of this work.
*I received this book from Revell (A division of Baker Publishing Group) in exchange for an honest review!