coffee bean

This morning I set down my laptop and cup of coffee when my little guy sleepily toddled over to me. Since there were two girls (Brooklyn and a friend) sleeping peacefully on the living room floor, I decided to take Judah outside. We snuggled on the swing, and as we rocked he fell sweetly back to sleep. I stayed there, holding him for about an hour and a half as he slept. I listened to birds and watched them play, heard the sound of tennis balls bouncing back and forth across the nearby court, contemplated life and prayed, while enjoying the peaceful morning.

To say that this has been a difficult year for our family would be a huge understatement. But to say it's been a good year would be an understatement as well. When Joe walked away from his law enforcement career to pursue his creative dreams a year ago, we didn't realize the magnitude of the struggling economy and how it would affect us. I won't go into details of all that's happening here, and I know there are many families struggling through these hard times right now. I am thankful, because we have really never gone without. We've always had a roof over our heads and something to eat. And we've been very healthy, which is no small thing. Through all the trials and tears, there have also been a lot of blessings, a lot of growing, a lot of bonding and a lot of loving.
One thing that I'll share that is happening now is that for the first time since 1997, I'm going to work outside the home. I've done a few different things from home since becoming a mom, but I'm actually going to go out and earn a paycheck for a while. (Not a large one, but it will come with benefits after a while... plus a free pound of coffee every week.. woohoo!) It's bittersweet. I'd rather not work away from home, but if I must, I think I'll enjoy this new job. It's just a part-time gig.. I'll be a barista at Starbucks. I'm a big fan of Starbucks, and I love love love working in the coffee shop at our church, so I think it will be a good fit. I enjoy seeking out little one of a kind coffee shops, and supporting small businesses, but I have this thing for Starbucks. They've worked hard at establishing their branding and it works. For a girl who has moved at least a couple dozen times in just a few dozen years (true story), I find something so comforting about Starbucks. Maybe it's the security and familiarity. No matter where you are, you can spot that round, green logo from far off and know what awaits you inside. You walk in to that heavenly aroma and are surrounded with all that's familiar. A little piece of home. You know what to order and can depend on it to taste the way you want it to. I'm a morning person and don't mind being there early. It's nice for us that they open so early, so that Joe can be home with the kids while I'm at work, and I can be home before he leaves. We'll be passing ships for a while, but "this too shall pass".
So this is my wish/ prayer list this morning...
1. That Joe can do what he loves and be paid well for it.
2. That I can stay home with the kids and create things for fun and profit, adding some play money to the family budget.
3. That until we get there, we continue to rally together with support and encouragement.
I'm sure everyone has heard the analogy of the egg, the carrot and the coffee bean. Each is placed in its own pot of water, and the heat is turned up. The egg turns hard, and sometimes even cracks in hot water. The carrot gets soft and mushy. The coffee bean remains unchanged, but changes the water it's in and presents the area around it with a comforting aroma. I want to be a coffee bean. Of course sometimes I resemble an egg or a carrot in this analogy, but I strive to be the coffee bean. Our women's ministries pastor always refers to coffee bean-type people as the Steady Eddies/ the Stable Mabels. That's who I want to be.