Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Tea Will Be Waiting

“I’ll be there in five minutes.”

I stared at the phone in one hand, the carpet-cleaning tool in the other, and just laughed. I was a mess. I had not showered, my hair was greasy, and I was working up a sweat with the carpet cleaner. An appraiser had just left my house, and dinner guests would be arriving in a few hours.

But an interruption this was not. This was an impromptu visit from one of my favorite people in the world. I shifted gears and prepared the tea.

I could not have been happier for the diversion.

That’s kind of what God has been doing in my life lately—forcing me to shift gears, change direction, and look to what’s really important in my life.

I read an article recently by a mega-mom-blogger who said we should not let our guard down for one second during the holiday season. We need to keep blogging, keep building our communities, keep those advertisers happy, even during the holiday season. Because statistics matter!

I’ll be honest, I felt a little rebellious after I read that article because I have broken all the rules this year. I have taken a sabbatical. I have not posted regularly. I have neglected our little community over here for other things God has called me to.

And I have not checked my stats in weeks.

Because right now? in my world? the only statistics that matter are the number of hugs and kisses and “I love you mom” ‘s I get.

Now, I love my readers, but the people I really want to keep coming back are the kids who come in my front door, kick off their shoes, plop down on my couch and exclaim, “This is my favorite couch in the whole world!”

Or my aunt who called me in the middle of a Monday afternoon just because she was in my neighborhood.

I have something to tell you. Even though I pretty much stopped writing this fall because God wanted me to do something else, my statistics didn’t suffer. As far as I know.

But most importantly, my status did not change in the eyes of the people who matter.

I have no idea if I will write much this week. My family arrives on Thursday, and to be honest, I have more important things to attend to.

So call me a rebel (or a grossly unsuccessful blogger), but THAT is where my priorities lie.

And if you’re ever in my neighborhood, give me a call. The tea will be waiting.

So tell me, your thoughts about all this. Do you write through the holidays? Do you freak out about statistics? I’d love to know.

Linking this post to Emily's Tuesday's Unwrapped at "Chatting at the Sky." Because she's lovely.



  1. Very thankful for your attitude of love and hospitality this year. You have made Mary and I feel more welcome and connected at Wheaton than any other person we have met.
    (wow, that was a terrible sentnece but you get the point).
    I think you are putting all

  2. I think you are right to question those voices that tell you how you SHOULD do things in order to measure up. The worst are the ones in our own heads telling us that we must have the perfect Christmas.

    I am leaving my three younger children on Christmas day (after opening presents first)to help my oldest child move into an apartment 10 hours away. The timing is out of my hands.

    I offered to prepare a big Christmas dinner for them to eat while we are gone because "that is how you celebrate Christmas." No, they said they would like to go out for Chinese. They are making the absence of their parents into an adventure. I love the way my kids embrace the new and I hope they never lose it.

    Merry Christmas, Shelly!

  3. love your perspective and flexibility - two areas that i need to work on :) thanks for focusing on the things that really matter!

  4. Tracy, my mom always said, "It's just a day." So you celebrate Christmas on the 24th or when you get back? Will the world come to an end? Do you love each other any less? No. Your daughter needs you right now--they understand that. No guilt!

    Thanks, Stephanie!

  5. Hi Shelly! I'm not anything close to a professional blogger, and maybe it's different if you are a bread-and-butter kind of blogger, but I think it is important to put first things first. Statistics and blog traffic are not even in the same class of importance as the people you love. Plus, bloggers get burned out if they force themselves to write when they'd rather be doing something else. Thanks for the reminder of keeping my persepctive!

  6. Shelly, I just wrote my "I'm taking a break and will see you next year" post. And I will see you then as well! I hope you have a splendid time with family and friend! Bless you, sweet friend. And Merry Christmas!

  7. Clearly I'm with you on this. Three years ago I thought blogging was of dire importance and cringed to miss a day of posting. Now I actually cringe a little to post, because it feels like devoting that time and mental energy to writing is taking same away from my family, home and/or real-life relationships. I do miss it, but I believe I've got things into a more realistic perspective now, and I respect and admire other bloggers with families and responsibilities who always come first. Bless them for being able to do it all! Like you! Have a merry Christmas! xo

  8. Life should always, always come first. You're doing exactly what you should do.

    And if I can remember which one is your house, I just might surprise you with a visit one of these days. :) Merry Christmas, friend!

  9. Amen!

    I used to look at stats - when I was lonely overseas. Fortunately, I didn't dwell in that place long as real life is what counts. Blogging is great when the other top priorities are being taken care of. Sometimes the top priorities can be a challenge and when they are I firmly believe time on the computer has to take a step back. It's a great example to our kids as well.
    Always enjoy your humor, wit and common sense - Write on!!! (When you aren't having tea and engaging in meaningful interaction with real people.) Merry Christmas!

  10. I so agree. I am all for keeping the blog going - because I love it. But when I need a day or a week off, I take it. The stats always bounce back. You have the right perspective. :)