Happy 5 Years to 320 Sycamore + a few thoughts from my heart

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Five years ago, 320 Sycamore began with a blog-warming and a giveaway (you can read my whole blog story here) We’ve been through a couple of blog re-designs,
blog title photoshopfinal new header small
some awful flash pictures, lots of makeovers, 2 moves, a baby, Favorite Things Parties, Under $10 Under 1 Hour Parties, Some Things I Have Learned About Being a Mom series, 1063 posts, 14,446,509 pageviews and about 30 gallons of paint. Whew! What a fun ride it’s been though.
After my first year of blogging I pretty much knew it all, so I wrote a post about what I had learned my first year blogging :) Do you know what? It is still true and relevant to me today, but I want to take a little different direction with this post. I often fall into the same comparison/I’m not good enough because I don’t make homemade marshmallows for my kids/I’m fat/why doesn’t my house look like that trap. Here are a few things I’m learning about looking at blogs, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, you name it.
1. Start your day before you turn on the computer.  If the counters are cleared and wiped, my bed is made, dinner has somewhat of a plan, I have some good smell from a candle or warmer burning, a load of laundry is going and I am dressed then I am usually inspired from being on the computer. I pin, I comment, I bookmark recipes, I think of future projects and I move on. Awesome!
If I’m in my pajamas, eating fritos and marshmallows (sweet + salty=yum), dishes are all over the counter, clothes are everywhere and I haven’t exercised in 3 days I all of a sudden feel overwhelmed and miserable. And begin to feel bitter towards my favorite bloggers. And make fun of what people are making on Pinterest. And click on every video and article anyone is sharing on Facebook. And get sucked into makeup videos! It’s not good and is just better for everyone if I begin my day right. Just taking notes from myself here, don’t mind me.

2. Just because you don’t have beautiful, magazine-worthy photos of your family, your house, your life does not mean you don’t have beautiful life. My favorite blogs have gorgeous photos. No one appreciates a good before and after more than me, an exquisite photo, a brilliant tip, a helpful pin, or a beautiful magazine spread more than me, but I can get overwhelmed by it all too.  Photo shoots take a huge amount of time to stage, Pinterest demands beautiful photos, good photography is an art, and no one’s house and family look like that all of the time.
I would say: you have beautiful memories captured in photographs, I know you do. The pictures may not be beautiful, but the memories are. Go through your albums, boxes, phone, computer and print off your favorites and display them in your home. sept 2011 132 1
Make a gallery wall with frames, put up a string and clip pictures to it, or tape them to the closet door.  It helps you remember the wonderful life you do have, the ones you love the most, that children grow way too fast, and your day can’t help but brighten a bit when you see them. And help me not get sucked in to the seemingly perfect life of others. Which brings me to number three…
3. Everything about her life may seem perfect, but she is real too. With worries, concerns, cries, fears, and imperfect reality. It might make a blogger seem more relatable if she wrote about her worries about an individual child, a fight with her husband, family issues, financial stress, but these situations involve the feelings of real people in her life that are not worth letting down. I try to remember that when I begin thinking someone is too perfect for me. Someone once told me, “if you think someone is perfect, you just haven’t spent enough time with her.” I believe that is true.
4. Take time to nurture yourself. The world screams you don’t have enough, you aren’t beautiful enough, skinny enough, or rich/talented enough so if you spend too much time in that realm, you may begin believing it.
Know what is important to you, where you want to spend your time, what your limits are. What does God want to help you to be at this point in your life? Spend time face to face with real people that know you and love you and uplift you. And get outside! Fresh air always helps.
5. That’s all I’ve got. But I felt like I had to put a #5 because it’s been 5 years. And I thank you for that, because this blog would be nothing without wonderful readers like you…
I would love to hear from you~do you have a hard time with the comparison/I’m not doing enough mindset while looking at blogs or Pinterest sometimes? What do you do??

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