i love january.

i know it’s my birthday month and i know it’s the new year but i don’t know very many people who love january like i do.

i always hunker down in january.   i’m fit to be tied with reVolutions and i’m busy making a good start on every last one of them.

i probably read more in january than any other month.   that may be the key to why i like it so much.

there is NO better way to be inspired than to read the right books.   i read 2 books the first weekend of the new year (the flip side of feminism and the church of Facebook) and i’m almost done with 2 more (lectures on womanhood and my not-so-storybook life)

my  soul must be famished.

i’m also always eating cleaner in january and i think the clear head combined with beating down the physical appetites makes for a great combination.

and despite last week’s semi-urgent gallbladder removal, i had already made nice with my running shoes and the 30 day shred.  hopefully to be started back tomorrow.

(i’m healing fast and feeling pretty darn great!)

then there’s the spiritual reVolt.

i never miss devotions in january.   i read extra.   i pray harder.  i make lists of people to pray for and lately have been using Starck’s Prayer Book to guide me.

january is almost always a season of doing hard work, laying down roots,  forging new habits which makes the flowering seasons of spring even more sweet.

i’m also reading and writing a lot about ‘womanhood’.   i hope to publish an ebook(let)  in a couple months full of my own personal journey ‘home’,   the spiritual and philosophical underpinnings of woman’s work in the world, how to train our daughters to be ladies, wives and mothers and some fun stuff including new recipes, etc.   on that note, if you’ve left a professional career to stay home with your children, i’d love a short email (possibly to be included in the book) about your story;   your career path, why you left,  the emotional and spiritual consequences for your family and how you’re adjusting to life at home.  it’d also be interesting to know if you’d encourage your own daughters to take a similar path.

hmmmm, what else?

cleaning, reorganizing, you know the routine.

and planning the herb and vegetable garden.

and thinking i may just need to finish decorating the master bedroom pretty soon.

and planning dinners and breakfasts and parties and maybe even a retreat.

and praying and planning for Pearl—which i’d LOVE for you to attend.

i’m passing on my january love to my girls who woke up this morning with their fresh lists and goals and schedules.

they said it was the best day of school ever.  they have caught my january fever and it may take us through to March, if we’re lucky!

january is all the underground, behind-the scenes hard work that it takes to make every other month fruitful and beautiful.

never underestimate the power of january, unassuming and quiet as she sometimes may be.

she’s a force to be reckoned with.

she’s the  leader of  this reVolt, you know.

find a good book and some buried goals and let january make you over.

sending mucho january love your way,


45 comments on “january and her bad self”

  1. Absolutely fabulous! Laying down roots for the year is exactly how this feels here too… a bit of privacy, a bit of extra time, lots of nourishment in every way. Glad you’re healing well! Enjoy every detail!

  2. Hi Edie.  Glad to hear that your recovery is going well! 

    I just wanted to mention a beautiful study that my Women’s Group is doing on the “New Feminism”.  (I know you’re Lutheran, but hang with me here for just a minute! )  😉

    The study is Blessed Pope John Paul  IIs “Letter to Women” and addresses the topics of human dignity, motherhood, and the state of the women’s liberation movement.  He also speaks to the complementary relationship between men and women and women’s particular capacity to help fashion a society marked by love, a capacity which he calls the “feminine genius.”!!!  I just think it is so full of truths and beauty!!!

    Anyway, I walked away from a teaching career to mother my own children.  It seemed so crazy…to mother 20+ 8-year olds all day while other women (albeit, wonderful!) were mothering my own.  I can honestly say that after all my different work experiences (4+ years for a US Senator, 2 years for a local county prosecutor and then 10 years in the public school classroom) for me, motherhood, is the highest vocation.

    Happy Manic Monday!  🙂


  3. Wow! A lot is going on in your world.  January has never been my favorite month but not my least favorite. August is my least favorite because the heat is so oppressive.  Usually after Christmas is over, I’m longing for Spring but this year I am trying to enjoy each day more.  I hope you heal quickly and that your January is blessed.

  4. You TRIED to inspire me….and you ALMOST succeeded! Almost. I am your typical too dark, too cold, too dull, too dreary January complainer. You made January sound so inviting.  Maybe I;ll give it a try….AFTER my root canal Thursday. True story. Maybe I;ll wait until February.:)

  5. You sound like you’re raring to go!   I never thought of January in those terms before.  My daughter feels the same way.  She says it’s almost spring.  I have all these lists in my head that you’ve inspired me to write out.  
    An ebook?  I can’t wait.  

  6. So positive! I like how you pull out the good things in life. I’m reading Sun Stand Still by Steven Furtick, it’s about the power of prayer, which you might like!

  7. Loving your positive and encouraging posts.  I’m a re-born blogger with high hopes for January myself.  Such a starting over place full of energy and boundless opportunities.

  8. What if you’d LIKE to leave your professional career to be a stay-at-home wife and mom . . . but there’s an appalling lack of Lutheran cowboys wanting to get married? Yeah. Work that in to the book, would you, please? But only if there’s room. 🙂

    • i’m officially adding you to my prayer list. and it’s january. being on the prayer list in january is like being in texas during football season. somebody’s gonna score. problem is–i’ll have lost my connection with the stache. i best sleep on that one. 🙂

  9. I am totally with you on January. I LOVE it! And I’m glad you’re healing well from the surgery. I had mine out in December, and I feel so much better! The bit of soreness from the surgery is a great trade from the pain and fear of eating.

    I don’t comment too much, but your blog always inspires me from your beautiful sense of style to your passion for the word of God and squeezing he most out of life!

  10. Great post! I am loving this January so far because here in MN it has been like Spring and it really helps my achey body feel so much more energized!
    I just have to say, I have done both, stayed at home with my children and also worked out of the home.  When the kids were little , before going to school I decided to stay home with them.  Now looking back, I would have done things differently and not thought that once they were in school my job was partly over.  Now I am 48, my children are 30, 25, 23, 20.  I feel I could have been a much better mother if I would have been home for them and taken more time to actually get to know these wonderful individuals, so unique in their own way.  I was so busy trying to care for a business that I missed out on many things. I could go on and on, but theres one thing I know for sure, You cannot get that time back and it goes by in a blink of an eye, I wish I could go back and change things.  

  11. Edie,

    I have been reading your blog since last summer and am always inspired by your grace and energy. I am a retired RN and currently teach 4th grade in a Catholic school. I stayed home for 10 years while my 4 daughters were young and am now longing to be home with my grandchildren. Financially, I do not see it happening for several years. Would you please add me to your prayer list? Will you pray for wisdom in helping me accept where God has placed me at this moment even though it is not where I want to be? I ask God daily to change the situation. I so want to be a stay at home Grandmother!

    Bless you! Wanda

  12. Edie-I am glad to hear you are recovering quickly from your surgery. I am trying to embrace January with hope and a new perspective. It is time to start off on the right foot. You amaze me with all of the reading you do. Need to go look up those books on Amazon. Put some on the wishlist and hope for some gift cards for my birthday. Sometimes I would rather spend money on books then groceries, alas the rest of the family does not agree.
    When our kids were little I worked graveyard shift so I could be home with them during the day. Then I taught at a local Christian school. I felt called to stay home and homeschool. It is difficult financially but a big blessing in so many other ways.


  13. I left a career in retail planning/buying to be a stay at home mom in 1999.  I was 36.  We had our first baby that year, and when another bio child seemed unlikely, we adopted 2 more in 2006. (a 20 month old, and a 3 year old)
    I must say that I never dreamed I’d love this job so much.  I never thought I’d be a SAHM.  And it is the best thing I’ve ever done.  Its hard to put into words how rewarding it is.  Sounds silly.
    I would encourage my daughters to do the same if the opportunity was there.  I wish when I was planning my life I would have thought more about how to balance family life.  I will definitely make sure my children have this in mind when they’re planning their careers.
    I discovered your blog just weeks ago Edie, and it is so fabulous!  
    Thanks so much for all your thoughts.

  14. Well I am glad to know I am not alone in my love of the clean, crisp and brisk aura that January brings.  For me it too has always represented limitless potential and growth of what the year will bestow. It filled with lists, books, charts and boundless energy.  It is about letting go of what is no longer needed be it weight, clutter or dead plants around the house and opening up our hearts and heads to what the year brings.  God in good.

    12 years ago I left behind a wonderful career chalked full of international travel, beautiful hotels and a lovely six figure income in exchange for a terminally messy house filled with six kids and near to no income…and I have not looked back once.  My career albeit on the backburner will have its time again, but for now it’s about the memories and lessons I can teach my children.  I tinker with the odd and ends project everyonce in a while but only if it fits between my kids schedule, can be done at home and it is understood that my yahoos come first. They are only young once it is flying by at warp speed…the good news for me is that I am still only 36 even after all these years…funny how that works 🙂

    uhh and what’s this about a gallbladder?  Ouch no fun no fun at all…what a way to jump start a new year…with a clear liquid diet…

    in gassho

    dawn in sac

  15. Wow.  I think you just changed my mind.  I have always hated January (and it is my birthday month as well!).  But, you are so right on devotions, resolutions, staying inside, etc.  MIND SHIFT!  THANKS!

  16. I echo the sentiments of others, you have inspired me as well.  I was already on the way to eating cleaner (I’m on Day 9 of a 10-day cleanse), trying to fit exercise in & just read an awesome book over Christmas break.  Please check out “Run with Me:  An Accidental Runner & the Power of Poo” by Jennifer Luitweiler.  I’m almost certain you will love it! 

    Also, have your read “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” by Barbara Kingsolver?  Great thoughts on eating fresh, healthy & local. 

    I currently work fulltime, but did the stay-at-home mom thing when they were younger.  Wish I could afford to homeschool them most days.  I love reading your posts on everything & look forward to the ebook(let).  In fact, I asked for (and received) the Artisian Bread in 5 min a day book as a result of your kitchen tour & discussion on it.  My Hubby is now becoming the bread baker in the family!!

  17. Edie, I loved this post.  I had never been a fan of January myself but I started rethinking my position last year when I realized two of the most precious events in my life took place in January  – I married my sweet, handsome ‘boyfriend’ on the 5th  (33 years ago!) & my firstborn arrived on the 28th (& I’ll never forget bringing him home in the biggest snow storm of the year on the 3oth!) … why hadn’t I thought of it sooner?  Well, I suspect it was because I was too busy whining about the cold to take the time to think about being grateful!  You  certainly make other very valid points in January’s defense so thank you!  I plan to enjoy it even more this year! 🙂

  18. Hi, Edie!  I found you blog last year through a link for prayer for your family after you lost your house. I must say I have read faithfully since.  I never leave a post uninspired, and I find a piece of me and my thoughts in almost every single post you publish. (Your post on why you homeschool felt like it was coming from my brain!)
    All that to say THANKS!  

  19. Edie….you should totally write and E book…it’ll be the very first one I’ll ever have bought. 🙂

    i love january, too.  not as much as YOU, but it is a force to be reckoned with….it pushes you and urges you to do better and be better and to cook more and walk more and run more and love more and, and, and…..
    Oh, I think I might have just fallen a little more in love with it.

  20. Edie I want to encourage you in your book. It goes against popular thought in today’s world. Younger women need to realize they can make choices even though it may mean doing with less with only one income. There are always “cottage industries” or small part time jobs to do to help. I will look forward to reading your thoughts. I am so grateful that I could stay home with my kids (and homeschool them) even though I would sometimes do one 3-11 shift a week when their dad would care for them. It was definitely a sacrifice but well worth it. It sounds like you have a lot going on this month on top of your GB.  You are a medical person so don’t need to be reminded that you did have surgery, as quickly as it is done these days! I guess all the book reading doubles as rest!!!

  21. Up until the day our first child was born, I had never questioned that I would work outside of the home. Of course, I would continue practicing law. But then she was born and my heart got all mushed up. Every morning, a year’s worth of mornings, I’d walk away from our babysitter’s home (a babysitter I loved) with tears in my eyes to sit down in my office (in a firm I loved) with tears in my eyes. “This is not natural. This is wrong.” Over and over again – that voice – for a year. Until we did what didn’t make any sense to anyone. I quit, came home, and had more babies. We’re broke, but happy.  🙂

    I’ve come to believe that was the Holy Spirit’s voice, prompting, guiding me here. The career that I loved will still be there, maybe? someday? But for now, I’m here at home.

    (not saying it’s unnatural/wrong for anyone else. just ME [just to be clear]. and b/c the lawyer in me just had to have a footnote – ha!)

    Love your blog and your heart.

  22. Another January lover here… Getting Christmas put away (much as I love Christmas…), and starting fresh gives me a new lease on life, routine, house and home. I enjoy the clean house, the cleaner me (don’t use nailpolish or much make-up–well, never much make-up), I simplify everything from meals to decorating, and start planning the rest of the year with fresh eyes and a renewed heart afer having just celebrated our Savior’s birth. 

    Good for you on your book. You always have such wise things to say. Thanks for all the inspiration.

    Can’t help much on the career to SAHM thing. I always wanted to be a wife and SAHM (no big career goals here), but I worked in the beginning and/or whenever I needed to for the good of the family. Finally our dream came true and I could stay home with my boys. Once they were raised I was a stay at home wife for several years, but now I’m working again part time and loving it.

  23. January is one of my favorites, too, Edie! We get to start again with a clean slate and we try to make the most of the fresh beginning. My girls and I have a renewed sense of gratitude about the fact that we get to homeschool, so we get after it in January. I eat better, clean better, pray better, study better and love better after the holiday break. That boost of enthusiasm makes this journey so much more fun.

  24. I’ve been reading your blog for the past few months and admire you so much – and finding out that you’re a fellow January baby just sealed the deal girlfriend!  I too adore this month and all that it represents….thank you for your amazing spirit and the lovely ode to the month I am in love with too!  I especially love the last few sentences….sigh.  xoxoxo

  25. thank you, this is so encouraging. january is a tough one for me but i have claimed that this winter is going to be a winter full of joy. thank you for spurring me on. 🙂

  26. Edie, my mind keeps wandering back to this post, specifically the professional-turned-SAHM part. I’m a  pharmacist, but have taken a couple of breaks along the way- one for about a year when my daughter was born (she’s 7 now), and on this break, I’ve been home for about 2 years now.  I’ve found both  hard and rewarding in their own ways.  I’d be happy to email you, but I’m just not sure where I stand on this. 
    I’m really, really interested in and looking forward to that ebook! 

  27. Ive been thinking about you recently Edie. Wed. night we came home from church to a fire. Not anything close to as bad as the one your family experienced, but a nightmare nonetheless. Our home was built in 1860 and is full of smoke damage. We’re playing the waiting game now as we try to find someone to come clean the furnace ducts before any real cleanup can begin. We’re looking at around $7000 worth of cleanup. Again, nowhere near a total loss. But our girls have been living at Grandmas for a week now and Im over our family being split up.

  28. I too love January!  I have already read more this month than I have in the past two months.  I’ve banished bread, pasta, rice, and potatoes, oh and dessert and have seen the results of 4 lbs lost. I love that January is special to you as well.  Hope you’re having a grand evening.  Toodles, Kathryn at TheDedicatedHouse

  29. i just started reading your blog thanks to my dear friend Angela, aka lovebeinganonny…alot of your words and thoughts could have come right out of my mouth!  I look forward to meeting you at the Pearls and Grace thing here in Nashville…i live in franklin tn. 

  30. oh, edie. I need a burst of this from you. My poor ol’ January is dragging! {bronchitis has me slowwww}. But I will not be deterred from my big goal this year: learn how to wheel kick. I am back to doing my 50 kicks a day. Watch out girl!

  31. Edie,

    Really…. this post, while lovely like all your posts, makes me a bit sad. Why?

    Well, Edie, I would have loved nothing more than to stay home with my son. I was not able to. And yet, I can still answer your questions, conversely.

    if you’ve MAINTAINED a professional career AND COULD NOT stay home with your children,
    i’d love a short email (possibly to be included in the book) about your
    story;   your career path, why you STAYED,  the emotional and spiritual
    consequences for your family and how you’re adjusting to life AS A WORKING MOTHER.
     it’d also be interesting to know if you’d encourage your own daughters
    to take a similar path.

    If you don’t mind, I’ll send you that email sometime this week or weekend.

    It breaks my heart that I could not be home with my child. It breaks my heart that my dream took a nose-dive. And yet, there are spiritual miracles in all of it.

    Thanks Edie….


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