Intentionality

Intentionality. This is a word that is constantly on my mind, as a challenge, an encouragement, a conviction. Am I living with intentionality? Am I choosing where my time, my money, my attention gets spent based on the values and priorities that define who I am? If a stranger looked at my daytimer, my bank balance sheet, my phone history, my t.v. usage . . if this person was a fly on the wall for a day, would he or she know that I profess to love Jesus, love others, live sacrificially, joyfully, generously, stewarding the many blessings I’ve been given to the best of my abilities?
I don’t want to get to the end of this life with a list of “if only’s” or “I wish I would have’s.” Nothing around me is going with me, and the only investment I am making now that I will ever see again is reflected in the faces I see looking back at me. More than anything, I want to see those smiles and feel those arms around me for eternity.
Why then, do I find myself staring at my smart phone or computer monitor for a ghastly amount of time each day? Why am I drawn to the Macy’s sale when I get a little extra money rather than the local food bank or World Vision disaster fund? Why do I shush my kid’s report on their day until it’s a commercial break?
This is the tension I live in . . every day . . and I hate it. I keep hoping that one day it will become easy. Maybe as I’ve gotten older my perspective on what’s truly important has become a bit more clear, but so has my apprehension of my ongoing self-inclinations. Ugly.
I am so thankful for grace. Grace that says I don’t have to be perfect, that I never will be, but that my Creator loves me enough that He won’t let me just be. He will continue to love me profusely and call me to not just live in that love, but love others with what I’ve been given.
I don’t think I will ever arrive this side of heaven. But to stay in the game . . that’s my desire. To not give in to the daily pull to “veg” out, numb my brain, live reactively to the immediate cries of the day. To actually let my life be shaped by what I most believe in, and live in such a way that others see it and feel it.
How is this connected to Sorrisi? When I founded this business I was looking for a creative outlet, but I didn’t want the goal to be simply my enjoyment – I wanted to be intentional about the purpose. A business that not just provided a product that was ‘fun and functional’, but one that would raise awareness of the desperate dental needs around the globe and actually DO something about it!
My hope is also that Sorrisi allows you to be intentional with your desire to make a difference in this world. An opportunity to not only give a gift to someone you love, but an amazing use of your money that gives a gift to someone that you may never meet this side of heaven but who desperately needs someone like you.
It’s never going to be easy, but think about what it would be like if more of us tried to live with intentionality. It certainly has been on my mind . .

Where Have I Been?

You may have noticed that my last post was a while ago . . . like 2 years. And interestingly enough, the topic of my last post was on multi-tasking. Well, I have found that multi-tasking can take place on a day-to-day more micro level, or on a macro level where the decisions affect the trajectory of life.
As you may know, I am a mother of 3 and a wife of a pastor. I am also a mental health counselor and business owner, managing a private practice for over 15 years. When I founded Sorrisi, it was out of a desire to make a difference in the lives of children that otherwise were out of reach. Sorrisi gave me a creative outlet and a way to leverage some of skills and passions to bless others. However, when I started Sorrisi I also made a commitment to God, my family, and myself that I would keep Sorrisi in its rightful place – that my current priorities of ministry, family, and clients would not be sacrificed for this new endeavor.
As you can imagine, this is much easier said than done. My life quickly became a circus, with all nighters and little rest – something had to give! Fortunately, God brought clarity. I had an opportunity to take Sorrisi to the “next level” so to speak with a grant and business mentorship program, but it would require even more time and energy than I was already giving. It seemed too good to pass up, but I’ve learned to get wise counsel and pray about such matters. My husband and I determined that if Sorrisi was chosen out of the finalists to participate in this opportunity, I would reduce my client load and go for it! But, if Sorrisi wasn’t chosen, I would reduce the hours I was putting into the business and realign my life with the priorities I was called to. Sorrisi was not chosen.
Little did I know the providence of God and what the next year would bring to our family. The closing of our church and saying good-bye to our family and friends, the closing of my practice, and the moving of our family across the state to start a new ministry and a new practice with a 12, 15, and 17 year old. The summary statement is that it has gone great! We love our new community, our new church, and the kids are doing so well. But doing great does not mean it’s been easy, and there has been a high need for mom’s emotional and physical availability!
We all have seasons like this. Where we are asked to look at what’s most important and make the necessary decisions (sacrifices) to live according to those priorities. It’s not easy, but it’s necessary and good.
Allowing Sorrisi to just be did not mean that I lost heart however. I am still just as passionate about this business as I was the day I launched. I am SO thankful for the orders that have continued to come in that allowed me to cover the bases and keep the business running. Between online orders, store orders, and the online business sites that carry Sorrisi pillows, there has been enough business to “keep the doors open” – so thank you!
So what’s next? Glad you asked! I would love your help in getting the word out that Sorrisi is a great option for this Christmas gift giving season! I have beautiful pillows in stock, my wonderful friend that still does incredible embroidery to customize each order, and A LOT of kids that we don’t see but that are in desperate need of basic dental care. So the work continues, and I would love for each of you to join me in the wonderful journey!

Mom-preneur and Multi-Tasking

My middle son has recently become very fascinated with building and setting live traps. Since he was very young Logan has been catching and categorizing creepy crawlies of all shapes and sizes. (It’s no surprise that the lizard pillow is Logan’s design. To know him it would make perfect sense why he picked bright yet soft green fabric, tassels, and a shimmery gecko with the tooth pocket cleverly tucked underneath the lizard tummy. Totally Logan).
So most recently Logan designed and made 2 sizes of traps that have been strategically placed on our property with the help of his supportive younger brother, Spencer. Every day has been an adventure as the two check and often find Logan’s engineering has paid off with something else that has taken the bait.
Meanwhile, I (very much a girl) try to carry on the responsibilities of wife, mom, house manager, and entrepreneur. Sometimes the balancing act goes quite smoothly, some days it’s a complete disaster.
This particular day I had received an anticipated business call of a serious nature. As I answered the phone with a professional tone, I was thinking, “Perfect, the boys are outside engrossed in some boy activity and the house is quiet. No problem.” No longer had I finished the thought, then the door burst open, 2 boys come loudly running toward me and a trap is shoved in my face with a live rat peering out at me. Unbelievably, I didn’t scream. Instead, I began frantically yet silently waving them outside with their newfound treasure.
The next 30 minutes is a bit of a traumatic haze. As I was desperately trying to formulate coherent thoughts and be an effective communicator, the door would fly open with an update. My youngest, Spencer, had deduced that he was not to make any noise – so a ridiculous series of charades would ensue filling me in visually on all the ratty activity.
My phone conversation/business meeting was coming to a close as literally, a drowned rat in a Ziploc bag, was once again shoved in my face and presented as some sort of sick trophy. Apparently Logan and Spencer had won the battle.
Which brings me to the realization once again that multi-tasking has taken on a very different reality than it did in my tidy office. Crazy? Absolutely. Would I trade it? Some days I might consider it, but no. This crazy is what I signed up for and I will embrace it, drowned rat and all.