Honesty Alert: Feeling Overwhelmed

Hey Friends!

I hope you are having a great week so far.  :)

Today, I was hoping we could just chat…ya know, as friends.

I’ve been feeling overwhelmed lately.  Well actually, ever since we moved in June.

I absolutely love the land and location of our new home, but the home itself has been a difficult adjustment.  I can truthfully say that I dislike everything about the inside of our home (minus the addition).  The rooms are very small, the flooring is hideous, my kitchen is disgusting, storage space is limited, and most days I feel like I am living in a junk pit.

I do not like to complain on my blog because I want it to be a positive, uplifting place.  And whenever I start to complain about my circumstances, I feel like a brat.  I begin to think of people who are less fortunate.  Of children who would love to call my house “home”.  Of people who sleep on the ground rather than a bed, and who would never complain of a room being small.  Of children with hungry bellies that wouldn’t give a hoot about how ugly my kitchen was, but instead would be smiling as they discovered the food within it.

I really have nothing to complain about.

So why am I complaining to you?

Because I want to be real with you.

Every since we moved into our new home, I have been posting about all the projects we have been completing around our home.  I have been sharing videos of our hard work, and of some of the fun.  And you have left so many sweet comments.  Many of you ask how I get it all done?  How do I keep it all together?

Well, I don’t.

Last night, I was sitting on my couch crying.  Not bawling crying, just crying.  I had been to my physical therapist earlier that day, and my back was killing me.  I do not think I have ever shared this on my blog, but I have scoliosis in my back, and I deal with chronic back pain.

I had so much to do last night, and my back wouldn’t let me.  I felt defeated as I looked at the piles of “stuff” that still needed to be done.  Like all of this junk in front of my fireplace that I don’t have time to organize.


And this gorgeous antique buffet that I purchased at the Habitat Store a couple of months ago, but haven’t had the time to refinish.


And my back patio has just been storage for more junk and projects.  The theme song from “Sanford and Son” comes to my mind every time I look at it.


Adam and Eli’s closet door has looked like this since the day we moved in…

I do not even have the energy to share pictures of my kitchen and bathrooms with you.  :)

Should I even bring up the 200+ emails in my inbox that still need to be answered and taunt me every time I open my gmail account?

Everywhere I look, I am reminded of all the work I have to do.  It’s not a good feeling.

And oh yeah!  Let’s not forget that I am raising four boys!  Yowza!  There are baseball practices, piano lessons, homework, meals to cook, laundry, etc.

Ugh.   I feel so overwhelmed!!

And I needed ya’ll to know that.

I need you to know that I do NOT have it all together.  I need you to know that sometimes I just want to cry from all the frustration.

So what’s a girl to do?

Continue crying?

Eat an entire tub of ice cream?

Write an entire post about her woes and complain to thousands of people she has never met in real life? :)


Or Pray.

Seek God.

Read His Word.


Can you hear me preaching to myself?

I need to keep my life in perspective.

I need to keep my mind focused on what matters most.

That is not my  home.

Not my blog.

Not my DIY projects.

It’s my heart.

Am I seeking peace in Christ?

My mom’s favorite verse was, “Peace I leave with you.  My peace I give to you.  Not as the world gives, do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled nor let it be afraid.”  John 14:27

John 16:33 says, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace.  In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

Psalm 105:4  “Seek the Lord and His strength, Seek His face evermore.”


I want to share with you an excerpt from my devotional book, “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young.

It is written like a love letter from God.  Here is what He is saying to me  today:

“TRUST ME in the midst of a messy day.  Your inner calm–your Peace in My Presence–need not be shaken by what is going on around you.  Though you live in this temporal world, your innermost being is rooted and grounded in eternity.  When you start to feel stressed, detach yourself from the disturbances around you.  Instead of desperately striving to maintain order and control in your little world, relax and remember that circumstances cannot touch My Peace. 

Seek My Face, and I will share My mind with you, opening your eyes to see things from My perspective.  Do not let your heart be troubled and do not be afraid.  The Peace I give is sufficient for you.”



Ladies, please KNOW that I do not have it all together.  If I have ever portrayed that I do, I am sorry.

I’m just a wife and a mom struggling to handle all the responsibilities thrown at me each day.

But it is my prayer that I never loose focus on what matters most in this life.  And that I seek God to give me His strength and His peace in my heart.

Thank you for letting me share my heart with you today.

(I feel better already.)


God bless you, sweet friends.


  1. Oh sister. I totally feel you. I am so overwhelmed and I’ve found myself down in the dumps lately. We are renting, our place is filled with mice that doesn’t seem to want to go away. I’m always worried about my kids getting sick from them. BUT, I KNOW THAT WE ARE SO FORTUNATE! I HAVE NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT. Hubby just got back from Uganda a couple of weeks ago, and you know what the kids get excited about? A toothbrush! They love toothbrushes. I can’t imagine getting excited about a toothbrush. I feel like there is so much to do around my house and have no energy to do it. May God give me the grace today to realize that HE is where I need to put my focus. Thanks for being real!

  2. Thanks for sharing from your heart! This is where most of us live anyway- struggling to keep our eyes on the Lord and to keep the balance in life. Also, it did me good to see a homemaking blogger’s house NOT in perfect order. You know, I love seeing the pics of lovely homes, but sometimes it just makes me think secretly that I am the only one who constantly fights against clutter and never has a perfect looking house.
    (now it’s not s secret anymore! hehe) :)

    Thanks for keeping it real! We ALL have these overwhelming times. You’re not alone either. :)

  3. Hey Traci….I could copy this post and put in on my blog as my own! How overwhelming life can be just in general…then throw a move into the mix and yowza…you get a serious mess! You know I’m only about 30 minutes away if you want me to come over one day and just help you wade through stuff. I’m totally serious….isn’t that what friends do? :) OR…you can come to my house and just escape from your stuff for a while. (not that I don’t have stuff here, but I didn’t just move in….although looking at my boys rooms, you can’t always tell that! lol)
    If you need me..you’ve got my number!
    Love ya

  4. Thanks for sharing this touching post this morning. It’s hard to not feel overwhelmed, we’re moms, we’re supposed to be able to do it all and make it look easy.
    I love you, girl for your honestly and humbleness.


    Oh and yes, I do have skype. Let me know when works for you. Can’t wait to chat :)

  5. Shoooot! Girl! I look at those pictures and I see what I assume to be everyone’s house…before they take pictures for their blogs. Before they invite you in their door. We all put up a front, I don’t know why. Sure, nicely decorated rooms, and organized shelves and closets are great and make us feel sane and in control. But, you know what? You’re the mom of 4 happy boys and you’re doing a great job. I don’t know you but I’m guessing you work your butt off everyday, so I think your piles of stuff look great. Just how they are. God loves ya, and your readers love ya! Chin up girl, and maybe we should do a link party posting the pictures of our real lives, our piles, our laundry, our sinks full of dishes, our yards full of weeds…because they’re there. Oh, with God as my witness they are there. In fact I just tripped on one :).

  6. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the honesty in your post. I can so relate to what you wrote. I am not even sure I have any other words to say really other than I just totally get what you are saying and how you are feeling. Just take things one day at a time, one project at a time and I will certainly keep you in my prayers. Your new home may not be all you had hoped for right now, but with each completed project it will get closer to what you want it to be and I am sure you will feel such a sense of accomplishment the closer and closer it gets to your dream home.

  7. Oh girl! I love you even more! I feel the exact. same. way. right now. Much has been done since our move in July but so much remains to be done. Curtains to sew, furniture to paint, etc, etc … and honestly, right now, I just can’t do it! So, I’m learning to “let it be” and it’s hard for this recovering perfectionist. Yes, the desk for the girl in my study is u.g.l.y. and desperately needs to be painted but not today. :)

    Praying for you and joining you in the “overwhelmed and totally NOT together” club!!

    Teri Lynne

  8. Dearest Traci, you are not alone. I have to preach myself out of funks every single day. It’s so tough juggling everything. I’m praying specifically for you, your back pain, your house, your heart, your precious family and all. May God give abundant grace. Love and many, many, many hugs.

  9. You are such a great person for letting it all hang out. THAT is what makes you special and everything that you are viewing as ‘clutter’ and ‘unfinished’ projects are simply a testament to the fact that you have a full life. That you live and are being a great example to your family that it’s about the journey. You are showing them, that through it all, it’s about insight, creativity, problem-solving, getting it done, but more importantly, it’s about family.

    Please remember that you had great dreams for your family in your new home. You saw the potential and the joy that it will bring your family – out of love. You *will* realize your dreams there and it will take time. That is part of the teaching and learning for your boys. They see all you do and without words, realize and are amazed at what a great team of parents they have.

    You are living a great life full of love and family. It may be difficult to see from being on the inside, but the progress you have made has been amazing. We all know the chaos that exists behind the scenes and the angst you must feel stepping over piles! We all feel that at the best of times and the fact that you are doing all of what you do AND are renovating a house, makes you even MORE special for doing what you do.

    We love you Traci for all that you do, all that you share and for being such a wonderful inspiration. This may seem cheesy, but some day I will share just exactly how much, and why, you and your sister have inspired me. I’m sure this goes for countless others. I pray for peace and healing today…..and to just relax with a nice cup of herbal tea with the thoughts of all you have accomplished!! xo

  10. I have felt the same way at times. (Actually, it wasn’t that long ago!) I think it’s good for us to just stop and just sit in God’s lap every now and then. I know sometimes I just need my Daddy. I’m praying for you. Things will get done….trust me…if your boys are anything like mine (I have a husband and a 4 year old son) it will be there waiting on you when you find the strength. :) God bless you!!

  11. I know exactly how you feel. Daily it seems like I have 1,000 things I need to do and none of it is getting finished. I can’t even find the table in the dining room for all the projects, furniture, mess, that is in there and it is stressing me. School is starting, my 9-5 job is crazy busy and overtime will be starting very soon for the next few months – UGH (never mind that its a job that I really dislike). I keep asking myself if I’m trying to do too much, basically 2 full-time jobs, kids, a life. I need to really prioritize my time better, and focus on getting one thing done at a time and not going from project to project not finishing anything. I think that will really help me feel like I’m accomplishing something.

    The blog, the furniture business, is what I really love, if I could only get rid of the 9-5 job. lol That’s what I keep telling myself I’m working toward, and it does push me to keep on keepin’ on. I will do this.

    We all need to keep in mind what is important to us and focus on that, then everything else will fall in line. (That’s what I hope at least.) :-)

  12. Thank you so much for the honesty in your post. As a wife, woman and mother I sometimes feel completely overwhelmed in my home, trying to keep it all together, I seem to always feel that I fall short. It makes my heart actually GLAD when I walk into someones home and it’s not perfectly clean and I see their “mess”. It helps to know that I am not alone, it helps to know that other women are going through the same struggles that I do.

    Thank you for sharing your heart and home with us. You have not only been an inspiration for me creatively, but you are more importantly an inspiration for me spiritually. Thank you for your willingness to be vulnerable in front of us all. Praying for your strength.

  13. Thank you so much for your honesty! I have to admit that some of my “blog friends” intimidate me with their clean houses, beautiful projects that seem to get done without glitches, and perfect families. I have a life full of chaos with grown children, a 12 year old still at home, grandkids, a crazy job, a very busy husband, a messy house with several projects all underway at once, most of which have a glitch here or there! It’s nice to hear that I’m not alone. It’s nice to see pictures where all isn’t perfect. I can tell by what you write how much you love your family and that you keep God in your life. I’m impressed. Thank you for sharing your life with us!!! All of us out here reading your blog are so lucky to be able to share your life!

  14. Traci,

    Thank you for your honesty! Life is overwhelming without some of the challenges you’ve listed! One of my favorite movie quotes is from Tombstone. Wyatt Earp is telling Doc Holliday that all he ever wanted was a normal life. Doc looks up and says, “Wyatt, there is no normal, just life.”

    You’ve got it goin’ on girl! Enjoy your life, enjoy those boys and everything else will fall into place:)

    Hugs from one Kentucky Gal to another!

  15. Driving my baby to her first day of High School… so I’m weepy already… I love your post. Always nice to read a “keeping it real” post… good thing about your struggles is that time and patience will eventually smooth things over and you probably won’t remember them being quite so hard (when you look back)…. but I speak from not knowing what 4 boys feels like, so what do I know….

  16. Oh Traci, I wish I would give you a real hug but a virtual hug will have to suffice. You are wonderfully human like all of us and it is our right to feel overwhelmed sometimes, but you are right in not getting mired in this – I hope today is a much better day for you, my friend!!!

  17. :::::hugs::::: Thank you for sharing with us. I love how honest and down to earth you are! I think we have the same personality of trying to do everything all at once. I learned along time ago all it does is cause stress. Your health is so much more important than something on the floor. Honestly, those pics aren’t bad at all lol. I still have boxes in one of our spare bedrooms that I haven’t unpacked since we bought our house 4 years ago =/

  18. Now I know why I was drawn to your blog… you are not some amazing superwoman – you are just like me. Your house is not perfect, you struggle with pain and its limitations, and trying to balance everything a mother, wife, blogger, friend, NEEDS to accomplish on a daily basis is sometimes just too overwhelming.

    With back to school upon and the holiday season soon crashing in on us – I think this time of year is very stressful and we need to be reminded of what truly is important. It is not how other people perceive us, how clean and organized how house is, or trying to have the “perfect” home and family. It is God.

    I hope all of this support will make your day a little brighter! …and remember to always pray!

    Love you girl!!!!


  19. Dear Traci, it is actually a huge relief to know that you are a NORMAL girl! Not some superhero knowing how to keep things together when it is not possible to keep them together:) Keep smiling, hun, have a tub of icecream, have some me-time and don’t worry. Don’t worry about house and its state at the moment (actually I am in a very similar situation there with the house, I might even write you an email haha, and then we can both cry together for a bit over things that are not really that important, although it is a matter of perspective, I suppose… ).Traci, you will get there eventually, and you will have a house you will love again, because you have a lovely family, and they are there with you :) And it is normal to feel down, actually it is quite healthy…:) Remember without rain there would be no rainbow:)
    Love from Moorland Home:)

  20. Sometimes you just need to share and share it out loud. And you need someone to hear you! We hear you. I think everyone goes through times when they feel totally overwhelmed like this Traci. Hang in there and dn’t feel defeated! Just do what you need to do and let go of the rest.

  21. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I sat here in tears, reading your post, and taking in my current living room situation. I, too, am feeling overwhelmed. You have quickly become my favorite blog over the past few months because of your honesty, dedication to your family, and perseverance of your faith.

  22. Amen! You’re not just preaching to yourself here. These are almost identical words I’ve been telling myself these past few days and I didn’t just move, don’t have a massive renovation going on, and am down two boys from you! Hugs and blessings love.

  23. Oh, Traci! I completely understand how you feel. You should see the clothes piled on my couch that have been there for days, my kitchen table that we haven’t been able to eat at in about a week, or the boxes piled in my bedroom that have been there since we moved in March and I still need to go through. Sometimes you just need a good cry, some time to vent and a whole lot of prayer! A tall coca-cola doesn’t hurt either! :-)

  24. Hang in there it will get better. I think all of us feel overwhelmed and want to cry way more than we let on. My husband says ” you eat an elephant one bite at a time.” I know it is silly but it’s true. One day at a time, one project, one pile at a time. It will get done eventually.

  25. Thank you for sharing your frustrations. It makes me feel more “normal”. I love reading your blog and enjoy the honesty you share. Thank you for lifting me up today and reminding me to reach for the Word and renew my spirit. John 16:33 is one of my favorites passages of scripture and when you posted it today it reminded me of all the times that speaking those words and meditating on them have given me hope to get through tough days. Thanks again.

  26. I am praying for you today. You know Jesus felt overwhelmed at times too, so it is not out of the question that we experience it as well. The key is what you have said…going back to the Creator of the Universe…the author of peace. I have been overwhelmed in my life. Contentment is sometimes hard, faith can be too. It’s ok to be ‘weak’ because ‘in our weakness, He is made strong’. Be blessed.

  27. Been there with the addition/building process….the never-ending dirt and dust, the constant chaos and mess, the just wanting it to be DONE so I can ENJOY it already, etc. And at 35, I’ve also had not one but TWO back surgeries for broken/herniated discs and suffer from chronic back pain as well as arthritis pain so I can relate to that too and how infuriating it is when you want to DO something but can’t because of that darned pain. Much love and hugs to you during this difficult time. Just remember that this too shall pass and you WILL be able to get back to those projects. As for the mess, who cares? The way I see it, people LIVE here in my home so there’s going to be messes. And really, when it comes down to it in the end, I want my son to look back and say, “Yeah, the house was messy a lot of times but my mom was always there to read to me or play or even just sit and watch the birds outside with me.” THAT is what is most important.

    Hugs and prayers sent your way that you feel better soon.


  28. Traci, Thanks for sharing this today! I think God was using you to speak directly to me…and to remind me of what’s important. I am a full-time working mom with a husband going through upgrade training to become an airline captain and a baby who has been sick since Monday. Today I reminded myself that my biggest priority is being a mommy to my sweet boy and that the work (both at home and at the office) will wait. Your bible verses reinforced that to me.

    Thank you for your honestly and for your fellowship. I needed both today. :)

  29. Traci, I have three boys with our first daughter on the way, and I know how you feel. I work full-time outside the home and haven’t had the first MOMENT to try and put together a nursery or do anything that doesn’t involve just the feeding and care (the “just keep ’em alive” kind of stuff) for the boys lately!

    One thing I hope will encourage you, though, is that I am almost finished with a master bedroom “freshen up” that is based entirely on your former master! We have the same bedroom suite that you have (or had), and our room is almost the same size and layout. When it’s complete, which hopefully will be this weekend, I’ll send you some pictures!

    Thanks for inspiring me, both from a Mom standpoint and an interior design standpoint. You are a star in my book!

  30. Hi, Traci

    I was moved so much by your blog this morning. I realize we cannot do everything, but as a woman, wife and mom we are always pushing ourselves to get one more thing done. I learned a long time ago not to let myself get overwhelmed with my “To Do list”. If it takes me a year to get everything done then so be it. As women, we are always adding to our to do list. Just remember our “To Do” is never ending and we must always keep on eye on God to give us the strength and grace to through our day.

    I love this verse in Isaiah 40:31
    New International Version (NIV)

    31 but those who hope in the LORD
    will renew their strength.
    They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint.

    Praying for you and know “Peace He gives you and not as the world gives.” You will have the strength to accomplish all that need to get done.

    God Bless,


  31. I like to say to myself “this too shall pass”, and it always does. Maybe not without some tears, but it does. Looks like you’ve got it figured out already though. Big hug to you :)

  32. Thank you so much for sharing! I can’t even show you my house! But, do not ever feel like you are alone. God bless this mess, I say! Peace and love to you and your family. Blessing abound!

  33. This is why I love your blog! You are so open and honest. I think we all feel this way from time to time. Sometimes we just need to sit down, unravel, and put things into prespective. Have a good cry and get it all out…that usually makes me feel much better. I wanted to share a qoute with you that hangs in my dining room….”Make time for the quite moments as God whispers and the world is loud.” I don’t know about all you ladies but I feel the need to be on top of everything all of the time. What I really need is to breathe and take a moment. Take my husbands birthday this weekend I totally overwhelmed myself and lost it. I was crying in the kitchen and my husband came over to me and said “Honey everything is perfect just how it is” he also told me I have a habit of setting myself up for faliure, that there is no way one person could ever do all the things I try to squeeze into a day. Sometimes we are our own worst enemey. You are an amazing woman with an amazing family. You do wonderful things for family and strangers alike…trust me you do wonderful things for me as a reader. As for your home…I am sure it will all come together in time. I hope you feel better! Hugs and God bless!

  34. I think I know how you feel. It seems like there are never enough hours in the day to do all the things we want to get done. I have chairs out in the garage, from last May (2010) still waiting for me to finish re-doing them. Every single room in my tiny house needs to be decluttered, but there are certain things I don’t know how to pare down, considering we have 5 people living here. Then I think about people in other countries who make do with much less than I have, the pioneers who lived in WAY less square footage than me, and still managed to raise their family (while, at times I considered allowing each of us 2 changes of everyday clothes and one church outfit, that somehow seems impractical in our day and age….especially with the way my GIRLS can dirty up their clothes…I’ve never quite seen anything like it!). Anyway, I get it. Recently, I began taking B-12 supplements, and it’s made a BIG difference in my energy level. I still have tons to do, but at least I’m getting more of it done now. (((HUGS))), and I hope your back pain subsides soon. I have a friend who has had 4 surgeries on her spine (3 lumbar, and 1 cervical) in the last 4-ish years. It’s not easy, especially with young kids and a busy life.

  35. I think we all feel this way sometimes. It might not be about the same things, but it’s something. I’m always feeling like I can’t ever get to the things I want to, because I have too many things that I have to. I have to work, I have to cook dinner, I have to bathe children, I have to start bedtime, I have to attack the laundry monster in the corner of my bedroom. I want to go to the playground, I want to go on vacation, I want to read a book, I want to write a blog post. But I feel guilty when I endulge those wants, because the have to’s won’t get done.

    Hang in there. You’re being the best you can.

  36. Ha! You reminded me of “Under the Tuscan Sun” where she’s bought a villa in Tuscany, then starts to freak out at what a huge job it will be to fix it up. She decides to “pick one room and make it yours.” Slowly, room by room you will do the same. And you have 4 boys to help!

    Do you need organization ideas? Pinterest and lots of other sites can help visually. Or let your boys come up with ideas for their rooms. And let them help out in all the rooms!

    The main thing is to try to enjoy making this house reflect you and your family. And have some chocolate, honey! Or a glass of wine. You sound like hormones are getting the best of you right now!

  37. Traci, I know you are going to get lots of messages from your readers here so I will try to be brief. Brene Brown taught me something about gratitude when she says that she tries to have gratitude for EVERYTHING. Even the things in your life you think you would rather not have be in your life. When she hated the walls and floors and curtains in her home she made herself express gratitude for it because it meant that she would do what she could to make it more pleasing. It would be her launch pad into something different. Be grateful for the itch to make it all yours but remember it’s a journey not a dash to the finish. Slow down & try to take it all in. Every. ugly. mess.

  38. I read your blog today and I totally can identify with how you feel in being overwhelmed.. My circumstances are different, but , feeling overwhelmed and stressed in anything is still the same. The passages you wrote are the best and they reminded me of what and where I need to put my own focus. I wanted to tell you that I had scolosis as a young woman, yes, had… God healed me of my scolosis and the miracle was confirmed by xrays. Claim 1st peter 2:24, I will believe with you.. You have every right to feel overwhelmed with all you have on your plate.. we are only human. Just try to take a deep breath and take it one piece, one step at a time. Its all good…… thats what a young man said to me one day, and I realized he was right.. even though it did not seem so at the time.. it was . If I had not felt overwhelmed, then I would have not realized all the goodness that I had at the time and took for granted. I hope this makes sense.. God Bless and Praise God that this feeling of being overwhelmed and stress too shall pass..

  39. Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I sit at my full-time desk job with hardly anything to do and I read your blog and many others and get so much inspiration and dream about what I could be doing at home. I want to blog and do all of the awesome DIY pretties out there, and have a beautiful home like all that I see, but I truly don’t have the strength and energy for it all. It really is like having 2 full-time jobs and I can’t keep up with it all (worse too, I’m a perfectionist–ugh!) and I literally just had a crying session (my poor, poor husband didn’t know what to do with me) this past Monday (I was hurting too-neck, back, knees…).

    Thank you for the spiritual reminders. Our God is kind to give us all that we have and He will give us strength to take care of it all and make it pretty! Also, as a side note, I want to make a sign someday with a little funny that helps me from time to time it’s –How do you eat an Elephant? One bite at a time! Tackle that elephant one step at a time! Blessings sent your way!

  40. we all have those moments….but you know what u are growing and teaching the most precious boys… Eli prays the precious prayers at Lunch and listens so attentatively at school…. you are such a good Mommy….

  41. As an empty nester mom, I still have days of feeling overwhelmed with life. Its part of the human condition. Its okay and it passes. A very wise woman (my mom) once said, “When you are feeling overwhelmed, just start.” I have found this to be so true … thus the name of my blog … “Putting One Foot in Front of the Other.” We all fall down down or get knocked down but, the best example to set for your children is to let them see you cry and then let them see you recover and move on. None of us are super women and that is a myth that needs to go away. I am almost 60 and I enjoy watching all of the young women’s lives vicariously through their blogs (and observing my own daughter and her peers) and I don’t believe for a minute that anyone has a perfect life. Thank you for sharing that you are human like the rest of us.

  42. Traci, Thank you for being so real. I so often read about the things others are doing and feel inferior. It feels good to know that others are just like me.

    Take things at your own pace and know that in the end it is not how our houses look that matters.

  43. Oh {hugs}! We all have those days! (And weeks!) Sometimes it feels so good to just let it all pour out so you can purge it and come to peace at the end–just like your lovely post! Sometimes we just need to regroup–some of us more frequently than others (ahem, note to self!!) You’re going to the right place for help! Thoughts and prayers!

  44. this was just a perfect post for me to read today, as the school year gets started and I have BIG plans for finally catching up on all that has slipped this summer…and last year, and the year before. My house is always a wreck, thanks in part to my 1 year old twin destruction crew, and my 2 older sons as well. I get down about it, but I have new hope today!
    And I also wanted to share with you another “real” house blog post from this week–had me LAUGHING so hard–I just love the reality of it all!
    Thanks for your honesty–

  45. Thank you. I sit here crying reading this because it speaks to me right where I am at. Thank you for the encouragement. I’m going to copy that excerpt from “Jesus Calling” and keep it in front of me today.

    Bless you

  46. This is exactly what I needed to hear today. We are in the midst of moving and we found out last night that our buyers for our home backed out because of the appraisal just 5 days before closing. I don’t know how we will do 2 mortgages and I broke and lost it last night. I was hoping to fix up the new kitchen and get rid of the ugly nasty stuff but I can’t. We moved from a great home in the city to the “country”. To top it off my 7 year old doesnt’ like his new school the boys won’t let him play with them at recess. Heartbroken!!!!!

  47. Girlfriend, you are singing my song! It never ends does it? That mom treadmill just keeps going and goind and going. … very little time for relaxation when there is so much to do. I abosolutely love those daily devotions, I turn to them too. Today, you wrote about the perfect message, thank you for sharing.

  48. Oh this is so what I needed to hear today! I have been majorly overwhelmed with the new baby and finding the time to blog between the rounds of house guests coming to visit and taking care of my sweet little man has been nonexistent. I have really started to feel stressed out about it and meditating on those words you shared is just the thing I needed to get me through. Thanks for sharing girl and being honest!

  49. Hello Traci.
    Sweet Summer Blessings to you.

    Traci, One of the major reasons I started blogging almost 3 years ago was I needed to have a positive thing in my life that had some order to it. If I were to do posts of the nasty places in this old house it would scare people. Put people in stunned mode. Grins.

    I’ve moved i think 19 times since being married and i understand wanting to cry, scream, pull my hair out, etc.
    This place in life has had huge challenges….the challenges will be there till i die. When we moved into this old house, we had such great plans of remodeling the kitchen right off the bat. Before the year was out, our daughter came home with a baby brokenhearted that her marriage was ending. Very emotional. One night we have a hail storm where it hailed 4 different times and the roof was finished off. Hadn’t planned on roofing for at least 3 or 4 more years, but our plans changed. Roof had to be redone. I started babysitting a extremely active 1 year old in amongst the messy house, financial challenges barged in, peri-menopausal health issues that kept me home and then cancer knocked at my door. There’s more, but i’ll leave this alone.

    With all these challenges, I am still learning that this will all pass. The lessons we learn are important.

    Be of good cheer, find some things that make you laugh and enjoy life like blogging. The messes will come and go. The challenges will come and go.

    It will come together, just maybe not on our schedule.
    God bless.
    Keeping it real,

  50. It’ll be okay. :0)
    Crying is good for the soul. It somehow lifts the burdens a little. And just know that this, too, will pass. I pray God’s peace that passes all understanding would guard your heart and mind and His blessings on your whole family!!

  51. Slow down and take time to savor the smiles and the hugs and the love. Those are the things that really matter. That buffet isn’t going anywhere, so it’ll be there when you’re ready.

    I’m overwhelmed and my mind gets manic, rushing from thing to thing, going ever faster, so Friday I just took a few hours and shut down, sat in front of the tv, and just let it all go away. It helped to have that break.


  52. Thank you for being real and sharing the scripture. I can relate to so much in here: settling a new home after our move, back pain with physical therapy, and wanting to be positive and grateful instead of negative and pouty. Praying God touches both our hearts with His fruit instilled in us during the grace of salvation: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness…

  53. Girl, it’s ok to cry when you’re overwhelmed; you have a lot on your plate and sometimes crying is the most productive way to deal with it. I pray that your tears were refreshing for your spirit, getting in touch with how you’re feeling and letting you get it all out. My simple prayer for your is Psalm 18:1 “I love you, Oh Lord, my strength”

  54. Out of all those pictures of your “messy, disorganized junk pit” all I saw was the sign that said God is Good. All the time, He is good. God bless you for being a real woman with the courage to say such. You are a blessing. :) Hugs to you friend!!

  55. Oh girl! I feel your pain. I know how we all struggle with this same thing. Keeping it in balance and trying to do this blog thing too can totally whack our lives out of order. I know that too. It’s hard to keep up with it all. I gave up a long time ago trying to keep up with a bunch of projects just to have something to blog about. That is not reality and girl, you just slow yourself down and do what you can do. You’ve got 4 boys you are raising, that’s a plateful every single day for you. I do not know how moms even balance this blogging thing either. I don’t know how I would do it if I had kids. and yes, we all have to turn to the Lord for his comfort and guidance. I do it all the time! He leads and he calms the nerves. You will be fine. Just don’t put those expectations out there that are hard to measure up to. Just do what you can do & it will all fall in to place. xoxo

  56. Hi Traci. I could have written this post. We moved this month, but I had to do most of the move by myself (with very painful knees). We’ve had 2 funerals this month, my boys start school, and I still don’t have the majority of my house unpacked. There’s so much to do to this home, my husband said it feels like living in a dirty, ugly hotel and he’s right. Like you, we picked the home for the land, which is beautiful, but also a lot of work and our list is very long right now.

    God will lift you up and give you rest. Boys will survive the messes, and even if you can just start with one place to make a haven for you to regenerate and renew your soul, it’d be a good start. This too shall pass and my thoughts and prayers are with you as you make these adjustments.

  57. When do the kids go back to school?

    Every woman I know has been there at some point in life. We just get tired. It will be okay. Let yourself have this moment (and a few more) I am constantly amazed at your creativity. But, I don’t think anyone who follows your blog expects you to be perfect. I will keep you in my prayers. Just keep going – enjoy your boys – my daughter is already 20 and in college. Time flies by so fast – worry less about the clutter and mess and enjoy your life.

  58. Thanks so much for sharing this! I feel ya girl! We moved just a little over a year ago and I have finally started to feel somewhat like I am starting to get things under control. We all have to remember that we are donig the best we can and just stay focused on what really matters. Just like you said. Thanks for blogging and keeping it real!

  59. Thank you for being real. I never thought of you as being something or someone you were not.

    When I get overwhelmed like that, I try to remember the one simple thing that was in your very last photo; the sign that says, “God is GOOD!” Yep, He is. Without a doubt. These things won’t last forever.

    One day at a time, girl!

  60. I can’t tell you how much it means to me to read this post today. I sometimes think I’m the only one who truly feels overwhelmed! Glad to know I’m not alone! Keep on keeping on!

    Thank you for sharing,
    ~Ann Marie

  61. Traci, thanks for sharing your heart. I understand completely how you feel. We moved into our home in January, and in early March I miscarried, which ended up being a long ordeal. I have two girls (2 and 1 at that time) and a million things to do around our home. But, for some reason, the Lord wanted me to rest. I fought against that for so long and became frustrated with all of the projects I wanted to do to make our house a home. Thankfully, by God’s grace, He restored me and has enabled me to be getting things done, slowly, and yet there are still many aspects of our home that have been untouched. I, like you, have had many a tear-fest on the couch, complaining about nothing getting done and so much left to do! I find, though, that the more I keep my focus on being who He wants me to be, spending time in the Word, caring for my husband and family first, then the other things come much more easily. My days are productive, the to-do list doesn’t seem so overwhelming, and I can ENJOY the whole process. Thanks for the reminders from God’s Word–we all need to continue to think on the truth. May God richly bless you today as you faithfully serve Him.

  62. Hi, Traci. I’m not a regular reader, but I think I need to be. :) Your post hit home for me today. I had a friend drop 2 of her kids off here unexpectedly due to an emergency doc’s appt. That meant no time for me to frantically run around shoving stuff into closets, etc.

    So it was REAL when she showed up. She looked around and told me how much my house “blessed” her today b/c it looked like her house. She admitted that she visits friends who have cleaned thoroughly before guests arrive, and it just makes her feel worse about her own house.

    It made me think that I need to be more conscious of my attitude towards my guests, and my heart…not so much the condition of my house. I am very, very good at cropping photos. From time to time, I’ll share a pic or two of our messes…but I guess I need to be better about showing my readers that I am a real mom too. :)

  63. Hi Traci,

    I love reading your posts and thank you for opening up about you today. I can’t imagine trying to get it all done and I have 4 kiddos also – but haven’t moved in years. Which is what brought me to my overwhelming moment the other day. We have stuff everywhere that has accumulated over 7 years! It just keeps getting shuffled around because I can’t seem to find time to get it sorted and a permanent home.
    Keep your chin up and we all have to vent our emotions from time to time. Sometimes it is a frustration and other times we are shouting at the roof tops our joys. Find peace in your family and their happiness.
    Thank you for making all of us Mom’s out here feel a bit of relief that we aren’t the only ones and that we have our moments of vulnerability.

  64. My favorite verse is similar to your mom’s…
    “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which is beyond all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus”. Philippians 4:6-7
    Boy, is it ever hard to ‘see’ that peace sometimes. All the stuff that makes up our lives can fill in around us and make the Lord’s peace seem almost distant or unreachable. I remember moving into our home and the months of work it required to make it habitable made it hard for me to see the ‘other side’, but I prayed that verse (almost every day) to get though it. Almost three years later, we’re still not quite finished, but I love my home because every good thing in it came from our hard work!
    Sending prayers your way ! : )

  65. THANK YOU for sharing this. I so needed to hear {read} this today. I caught a glimpse of a sign in your boys’ room…God is good! All the time! Blessings to you and your family and thanks again!

  66. Traci, I so appreciate your honesty about where you are in this season and how you’ve been feeling. I feel the same way about my house. We owned a home for over 16 years. A home that my husband did much remodeling too to make it a perfect place to raise our family. But then two years ago he lost his job. We were already falling behind, but we just couldn’t keep up with the payments, so we had to short sale and give it up. It was so hard to watch another family move into a place where we’ve made memories. Currently we are renting a large, two-story home, but I just can’t seem to muster up the strength to even finish unpacking. I have piles everywhere, boxes still to be unpacked, etc. When I look around my home I feel totally overwhelmed.

    I too want to keep my eyes focused on the things that truly matter. I have so much to be thankful for!

    Thank you for sharing your beautiful heart with us.

  67. I think you did exactly what you needed to do: vent to those you know will care, and pray to God. I SO appreciate your honesty and I have many days like this myself and it’s nice to know that I’m not the only one!! This world can be difficult, and Satan loves that you’re miserable right now. Vent, cry, write about it, pray, do whatever you can to release it and lean on God right now. He will hold you up and hopefully some of the wonderful comments you’ll receive in response to this post will also help to lift your spirit. You are a great woman, mother, wife, friend, daughter and it’s okay if you don’t have it all together. You’re not supposed to! Doing “just enough” right now is good enough and you need to allow yourself permission to be okay with it for now. All of those things you listed can wait. Do some self care and take some time for you to do whatever might make you feel good right now. I wish you the best in the journey. Moving is difficult. There’s a reason why they say it’s up there with the death of a loved one or divorce. It’s hard. But it’s okay and I know there are better days ahead. Keep your chin up and know that we’re all with you! XOXO Laura bandbsnestinteriors.com

  68. I think it was divine intervention that the first time I visit your site I read this post.

    I just moved in July and feel so overwhelmed with my home and my two daughters that I have had my moments of tears. I am trying so. hard. to remember that this is not my home! I just started reading “Jesus Calling” 2 weeks ago and it has really touched me.

    Thanks for being so honest with your post – it encourages me to know that I am not alone with my struggles!

  69. so true!! I am a Mama to 3 boys, homeschool, and just moved into our first home which needs and endless amount of work. I know that it is only by the love and grace of Jesus that I make it through the day…and still 9:00 rolls around and I find myself sitting on the couch crying at the mountain of things on my to do list. I think that God is working on my heart and reminding me that I am to rejoice in all things and be grateful. When I think of my life and all the good….a nice home, food, 3 boys that I have the PRIVELEDGE to stay home with, my attitude is so much more patient and loving! I want a nice home. and have been working in my very sparse free time to get it there. Yesterday while painting some dressers, my kids squirt gunned them and all the paint was ruined!! I was so upset and then it hit me, I will have a clean home one day and toys wont be all over….but my home will be quiet, clean, and without the laughter and noises that fill it now. What I would not give to hear my one year olds feet pattering on the wood floors, and to watch my 3 year old push around his trains (even if it mean stepping on them in the middle of the night), or seeing my 5 year olds cute little freckled face light up when he realized he could spell a new word. Will I long for perfectly painted dressers in 20 years? Not likely….it will be the moments with my young family that I will treasure more than anything!! I think that that is a message that God has put on my heart and I am trying my best to live it daily….despite my short comings. I think that the more time we spend with Jesus the more time we see things his way! I appreciate you sharing your heart! Although I love decorating, and DIY projects, I love Jesus and my family way more and it is refreshing to hear another mom that is struggling with the same issues speak the same thing- it is only in Jesus that we can make it through this life. Thank you Lord!

  70. Let me just chime in with another “Amen!” to what so many others have been saying. I think we all feel overwhelmed at one point or another. Some days it’s an all day thing, with working full-time, three kids in school, after-school activities, maintaining some semblance of a halfway organized home, laundry, grocery shopping, etc… The list goes on and on. It’s a wonder that we’re not more overwhelmed than we already are!

    One thing I am trying to do is learning how to say “no” to certain things in an attempt to keep my priorities in order, and to ask for help when I need it. When asked if I can have a work meeting during lunch, I politely refuse, as I workout at lunch and keep that on my schedule as it is a key to my sanity and productivity.

    During the summer, I made a daily chore list for my kids and it ensured that I came home to a clean kitchen and bedrooms with the beds made, maybe some laundry folded in there as well. It’s the little things that make a big difference sometimes.

    But dang, girl – you have FOUR boys! That alone an astounding workload! Cut yourself some slack, don’t sweat the small stuff and remember that one day in your life you won’t have all of this chaos and you may very well miss it. ;-)

  71. Belongings do not make a home; family do. I know it’s not the easiest thing to look at a house that is filled with your things and think, this is not my home…but it will be, someday! You have lived there such a short time…be patient! I’m sure your old house didn’t become a home overnight…or even in a month! Give it time.

    Bless you and yours.


  72. just getting real, that is what the girls want to hear & see. I pray you can gain perspective, because we have to realize we are the ones who layer these expectations upon ourselves. Most important and I’m letting the words bounce back off the screen to “me-self”; in light of eternity this is what matters the most. What the four little guys will remember and are blessed in having, a Godly mother, to instill the things that will help grow their relationship with Jesus Christ, not bigger rooms & painted dressers. Love you dear blogging friend.

  73. What a perfect post for today, I am right there with you. i have not even posted on my blog for like a month and I am still overwhelmed! Sometimes we just need a break and to focus on God and family! Thanks for your honesty and chin up girl it will get better!

  74. Just want to say thanks for your sweet ‘sermon’. God used you to speak to my heart today.
    May you be blessed as you are a blessing.


  75. Thanks for being real. I feel the same way (overwhelmed, it’s my life story) and I don’t have a mom who can help me through it and remind me of the scriptures. I depend on lovely women such as yourself. :-)

  76. Thanks for sharing what’s on your heart. If it helps to know that you’re not alone… I’m raising my hand to say that I am experiencing that same OVERWHELMED feeling right now!!

    It’s a blessing to be able to sit down at my computer for a short break: I have a ton of chores, organizing & unfinished projects that need my attention. But, for a few minutes… I’m going to enjoy some reading time.

  77. I love that you kept it real! Yay! You, via your blog, have inspired me to try new things. I, too, have furniture that is in mid-refinishing state. We’re moving to a farm in less that two weeks and I, HONESTLY, don’t know if I would have been up for the adventure if I had not enjoyed the adventures of you and one other blogger. That’s what a never-seen, but often-read friend you’ve been to me. At my dinner table I share, “Traci is doing this…” and the whole gang knows you’re some blog lady who Mom loves to read. :)

    I appreciate so much that you showed your piles, closets and back porches. What a huge encouragement it is to me as I try to pack up 8 YEARS of stuff. It has never been this overwhelming in the previous 18 moves! (No, not military, just my husband’s hobby.) We’ve never lived anywhere this long and it took me TWO DAYS to pack the playroom – not because we have 2 days of stuff, but because we were sorting and pitching and taking to charity. I feel so old and slow. and mayb unmotivated. So I’m glad to know that Traci’s house, even with a cut-out for stairs still looks like mine in other places. Makes me admire you all the more!! Thanks for keeping it real.

  78. Hang in there! I need to get Jesus Calling. I am going through Jesus Lives right now, and it is SO helpful in times like these. Everything you described is perfectly normal and perfectly human… to have that push/pull of stress about your surroundings, etc and feel guilty for not tap-dancing through life shouting about being blessed every minute. We all do that. I have 4 boys too. I understand the schedule you’re on, the projects you have and the duties you balance. I get stressed and cry sometimes too.
    If all things work together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose, well, that would include your stress, your crying jag and this blog post. Look at all the comments here… all from women who are saying that this touched them, that they needed to hear this, and that it made them feel better. Hang in there. (And thanks for your honesty.)

  79. Thank you for your honesty! I am right there with you. Some of the same issues, some different ones. I don’t think many of us have it all together, and if someone says they do I don’t think they are telling the truth =) We’re all just moms trying to do a good job, and boy is it a hard job!!! I think you’re doing great! Hang in there!!!!

  80. Oh Heavens to Mercotroid! Thank Goodness you’re not perfect. But you are a perfect inspiration. :) Your blog has inspired me from the time I found it. I had to giggle when you posted the disheveled closet of boy shoes… I don’t even have kids (yet) and that’s how our little pad of tile by the front door looks. But I definitely feel your pain. I feel like I can’t get my house clean enough. I married a slob… a good hearted, hard working, genuine, sweetest heart of gold man on earth, but a slob none the less. The small tiny house we currently own was the one he had bought before we even met and married. Add a couple of animals in the mix, FYI- I didn’t grow up with house pets, cats and dogs lived outside- in their respective shelters and doghouses/ garage etc. So trying to clean up after a slob AND animal dirt is my ongoing daily everything. I joke- I’ve never had to work so hard to keep things so minimally low standard clean. Then we plan on moving in the next year- and I know that will happen when it’s God’s Will. But OMG! we can’t seem to get things fixed up fast enough. We have a good home- small, it’ll do. Until then… I read blogs like yours that reassure me that nothing is perfect- and that’s perfectly okay.

  81. Thank you for sharing your feelings of discouragement and frustration. I feel overwhelmed often and find myself comparing my home to others and thinking that mine will never be as “perfect” as I want it to be. Thank you for sharing that your home is not perfect either and that you struggle to keep your focus on the Lord.

  82. I feel better already too. Thank you for sharing this with us. I’ll be looking for that book of devotions and adding your family to my daily prayers. Even though you’ve never met me or many or even most of us, we’re friends. Thank you for the reminder to seek HIM first.

    Traci, our Father is a God of order and we’re his children. Your life is disorderly right now. The clutter is like constant noise to your soul. Find one room to make a haven, perhaps your bathroom where you can soak in a bubble bath and have a few minutes to yourself.

  83. Traci ~ I totally know where you are coming from. Especially with the physical limitations and pain that you are dealing with everyday of your life. How you are feeling? Well, I’ve been there and am also at that point right now. I have all the ambition in the world going on in my head, but because of my FM (fibromyalgia), I am not able to do what I want, and more importantly, need to be doing. We are in the middle of finishing our basement, so all the basement stuff is either stuffed out on the back patio (like you showed) or stuck where ever on the main living area of our house. Drywall dust is EVERYWHERE. Projects 1/2 completed and so much to do and dealing with. On top of this is the contstant pain and limitations of having FM.

    So, I will give you what my friends give me. (((HUGS))) Though not as affective as in person, the cyber hug will have to do for now. I also feel guilty for all I have and bite my tongue not to whine, but as a friend said to me once a long time ago, it’s your life that is being overwhelmed in its own unique way and it’s ok to be upset. Its ok to cry. It’s happened to me once while sitting at a red light, I couldn’t stop it and it just kept coming.

    Don’t worry about the emails, you’ll get to them when you can, if you know its a joke just give yourself permission to delete. Don’t worry about the ‘stuff’ everywhere it will get taken care of eventually, it won’t be there for forever. Send out a note to all your email contacts and tell them you are submerged and can’t get back to them all individually as you would like to. At the same time give yourself permission to delete, or put on hold, all the things you have listed in your head as needing your attention. Put yourself at the top of the list and give yourself a hug. A really, really big, tight hug.

    Sorry this is so long, but I understand where you are coming from. Totally. You’re going to be ok.


  84. Traci – I am so sorry that you are overwhelmed and having to deal with back pain. I can totally sympathize with you because I’ve been in physical therapy for my back since June and feel like I’ll never be normal again and get my life back. It is frustrating not to be able to do the things that you want to do. I hope that you’ll soon feel better and get some relief.

  85. Traci … I am new to reading your blog and now know why I am drawn to it. Your honesty and straightforward attitude is amazing. Although you are overwhelmed now, it will get better. You have your priorities straight. Never feel bad about being honest. It makes you authentic and inspires others out there. Thanks for your honesty. Love, love your blog. Take care of yourself!

  86. hang in there lovely lady.
    you’re human – that’s good to know!!!!
    take special care of you and yours – and the other stuff will happen when it can.
    sending hugz from way over here.
    cheryl xox.

  87. Thank you Lord…Traci is normal! I came home from dropping our youngest two off this morning and intended to clean my house from top to bottom. But instead ended up reading your bolg…of course. I have 4 kiddos, and have just started working again, only school hours and only 2 days a week. There are so many things that need to be done.
    When we moved into this house 13 years ago I hated it. The rooms were too small, and still are. The kitchen was royal blue, delightful and the yard was tiny and horrid. We have slowly chipped away, made some additions and re-created the garden. The bedrooms are still too small (and too few) the kitchen is now white, after just changing the bench tops and our kids don’t want to live anywhere else. It is home and everywhere I look I see something that we have done together. This house is still far from my dream home and I wish I had bigger and better. Is that selfish? I keep trying to tell myself it is just being normal. God has Blessed me with a warm dry home, 4 healthy kids and a wonderful husband. Do I want more? You bet I do. Every day. But like you I am thankful, and I think that is the key. We remember to be thankful to Him, and I’m sure He doesn’t mind us sitting on the couch crying into a tub of ice-cream every now and then.
    You are an amazing woman, and although it is more than likely we will never meet, you have inspired me in so many ways. Thank you. xxx

  88. I have had that overwhelming feeling before. Everyone feels this way sometimes. I love the saying “you can have it all and do it all, just not all at the same time.” Try tackling one little project and not think about all the projects and you will feel good about completing one thing.

  89. When I feel as you do (alot with three teens, the oldest driving as of yesterday!), I call up my girl buds and we switch houses for a day. We’ll clean, organize, decorate, redesign, help with projects etc. We are rejuvinated and inspired each time, but most of all…we feel as if we’ve accomplished something great, helped out a sister and done it all with laughter.

    I’m praying for you and oh…go get a pedicure! That ALWAYS makes me feel better!

  90. Eat the ice cream (mine was rum raisin and I wanted more rum in it!) I am in my sixties and had to learn the word “no” and my husband had to learn the word “slow”! Sometimes we all spread ourselves so thin that there is no tme left for us. I think you need the time to do something for yourself and then regroup. A day off never hurts and it will still be there when you come back, it just won’t look as menacing. Bless you Sweetie, you’re doing fine!

  91. Traci,
    I appreciate you being so transparent. So often we read blogs and we see the “beautiful” side of everyones home and life. I love that you shared and “kept it real.” Just know you are not alone. I haven’t read any of the other comments, but I know for myself that I feel like you do sometimes too and it’s okay to feel that way. …and crying is okay too. Don’t lose focus of what’s most important. God, your hubby and your boys. Goodness, it has taken me twenty years to realize that I don’t need to fret over my house not being spanking clean and having it all together. You love on your family. Those boys of yours won’t be little forever. They won’t remember if the house was clean. I guarantee it. They will remember all the fun times you had together as a family and all the baseball games you went to see them play in, etc. Most importantly, and you know this, we are here on this earth to do God’s work. You do this everyday on your blog. You have touched so many of us. I know it would put a smile on your mama’s face and you know it definitely puts a smile on God’s face. : )
    Sending you big hugs. Take it easy…one day at a time and before you know it, your fireplace area will be cleaned up and the porch will too. Don’t be so hard on yourself.

  92. God Bless You! I feel like God just spoke to me through your post, and I know I wasn’t the only one. Thank you for sharing, as it was exactly what I needed to hear! As my mom always tells me: “Let go and let God”

  93. I love that you want to be authentic with us, and that you want to be known for the real Traci not just the one we see on the blog. That’s why we’re friends! Love you to pieces, you selfish baby ;)

  94. I hear everything that you are saying. I moved from Florida in Nov. 09 to Cincinnati and then 8 months later we were transferred to SC. Moving to 3 houses and one apartment in a year just about did me in. I started blogging before we left Florida because I thought it would be fun to document our move and our new home in Cincy. I enjoyed blogging and loved all the friends that I met online BUT then we moved again. I don’t love my house either:( I have nothing to complain about but I feel just like you do. The rooms are not coming together, the furniture doesn’t fit, I just don’t love it. SO, I haven’t been blogging regularly. The last time I blogged was 4 weeks ago. I miss my friends but I just don’t want to blog about the house yet. I feel your heartache and I understand. Thank you so much for sharing it with us.

  95. I have been reading your blog for months and this is the first comment I have ever made! You hit the nail on the head! When I read this I thought, oh my goodness, so I am not the only one with projects on my porch (painted the first coat on my son’s bed tonight actually) and baskets and boxes in the house that haven’t been organized! We moved several months ago and although we didn’t exactly downsize in room size (still a two-bedroom, and gained a dining room and full laundry), we did in means of storage. The house was built in 1920 and literally, no joke, has ONE closet in the WHOLE house! I have tried to “simplify” repeatedly. I have hauled two trucks load to fundraiser garage sales in our community and STILL have stuff to go through!

    To add to our space issue, as soon as we moved in I found out I was pregnant! So I now have a newborn (making our third boy) in the house with all the newborn necessities to make room for!

    I know we won’t be in this house forever and I have faith that it will all work out. Thank you so much for sharing! It always seems like a blogger’s home is in tip-top shape and I feel so inadequate at times wondering how do they keep it all together and so clean! What am I doing wrong! I am so thankful that you are a “REAL” person! ;)

  96. I think it is great that you can be honest and tell how you feel! I promise we all go through it…I know I have been through it…there are still times that I look and walk into my house and hate it…..but I just have to know it is what God has blessed me with and be happy about it! I love your devotional…that was great!

  97. You’re human~ we all need to vent once in a while, & you’re entitled to that. :)
    First of all, remember that your children will not be children forever…enjoy taking them to practices & games, and perhaps focus on one room or one area of your new home at a time. Your kids are young now, but you’ll be in your home even when they are grown & gone. This quote is my mantra daily…especially when I’m feeling overwhelmed –
    “Breathe, let go, and know that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.”

  98. Traci, you are a wise soul and a sweet spirit. I know that YOU know that this shall pass… but it does feel so good to hear it from a friend: This too shall pass!
    This blog is a special place, but, remember to take time for what God is calling you to do. I always think of what Beth Moore says: “you can’t do 1,000 things to the glory of God.”
    I will pray right this minute that God will give you clarity about what to say No to.
    I love you, sweet friend.
    Lifting you before the throne.

    and btw: my house SOOOOO looks like that.
    a lot.
    – {dar}

  99. One of my favorite authors is Elisabeth Elliot. Years ago she had a radio program called “Gateway to Joy”. She once gave this piece of advice to overwhelmed people: “Do the next thing.” Don’t try to do or even think about the dozens of things screaming to be done, but just focus on the next thing that needs to be done.
    That piece of advice has helped me through the years. When I feel pulled in every direction, I say to myself, “Just do the next thing.”

  100. Oh Traci, so sorry to hear you’re going through this trying time. You have been through a lot this summer. Maybe things will settle down now a little. I hope so. Maybe we could do the Smashing Tomato thing soon!& That would be fun! Keep looking up! This too shall pass! Prayers, Gail

  101. Hey my sweet friend. I love you. And I was just thinking. . . this time of year seems to be a hard time for all of us. We’re all a little worn out from the summer, but then getting organized for back-to-school sort of sneaks up on us and all of a sudden there are piles of stuff on every horizontal surface. So I think you might have been overwhelmed a little even if you were still in your beloved old house. And of course you’d be overwhelmed with the issue of where Jonathan would be going to school and all of that.

    So when you take all that, add to it moving into a house that needs to be completely re-done, throw in a successful blog to run and a new conference to plan and promote, and add a physical problem for good measure, I’d say you have a right to feel overwhelmed. Bless your heart!

    Here’s the key: you FEEL overwhelmed, just like so many of us do so often. But you are not overwhelmed. Because you are not stuck all by yourself. You don’t have to do all this alone. God is with you and will enable and empower you to do what you need to do, all the while loving you just as you are at this moment.

    I have a friend who tells the story of how she once reached a point of feeling so overwhelmed that she literally got sick. Even with so much to do, she ended up having to spend days on end flat on her back in bed. She cried and she prayed, and she was reminded of Jesus’s telling the disciples “Without me you can do nothing.” Then she heard the Lord’s voice say to her, “What part of ‘nothing’ did you not understand?”

    You’re not a whiner. You’re a wonderful, honest woman, and I’m proud to have you as a friend. God will see you through this difficult season. Know that many people are praying for you and cheering you on.

    Much, much love to you, dear one.

  102. Whoa, after 106 comments, I am adding a 107! So you may not get to this! But I just wanted to say… that I read your blog because you seem so normal sometimes. And it makes me feel better. Because if you just read about perfect blog houses that seem to have unlimited budgets…. now that gets hard for me. But I have a normal house, with a normal budget. In the middle of nowhere (which is not that normal) like, no Target or TJ Maxx or Hobby Lobby. So I like to hear struggles. Not so many that it becomes depressing… but just life. Cause we are all there. So chin up….. (cheesiest saying….ever). Your house is beautiful because of the people in it. Period.
    Thanks for keeping it real!

  103. Oh Traci…..[big hugs]….wish I could pop over for a day and help you. You’ve always been such a blessing to me!!

    That piece of furniture that you need to refinish — we have the exact same one in our dining room. It was my grandparents’ when my Mom was growing up. :)

    You’re doing a GREAT job and we KNOW that your life isn’t perfect because ours isn’t either!!!!!!!

  104. Hello!! I can totally relate! Sold our dream house ( sigh it was fabulous) and moved into a real fixer upper. Problem is, my DH cant fix anything and with no extra money for a handy man, well……..you can only imagine. I look around and feel down, too. I’m thankful for the roof over our heads but dangit! Our other house was new, and huge, and clean and had plenty of storage…and did i mention we had wonderful neighbors? We are stuck in this neighborhood..going on 7 years now. This is not our forever home but there is no end (or move) in sight. Keep the faith. It’s gonna be ok. I love your blog…and your honesty! :)

  105. So blessed that you share your heart with your readers. Your blog is inspiring! I was drawn to the beautiful home you had created before you moved, and am now so excited that you have moved and are showing the rest of us how to can do it from the beginning! Do not despair! Your journey is inspiring others and letting us know that when we get to do our own remodeling it will not be easy, but do-able. In essence, your sharing your heart and a testimony. I love that! Thank you for sharing! Oh! And, even in the seasons of hard work, remember to rest. God, too, took time to rest.

  106. Sometimes God does bring us to just that place. Where we realize we cannot do all of these things on our own…He is trying to tell us to come to Him and that He will take care of it. I am there a lot…I get so “dependent” on my own strength, but it fails me always. Only He can help us. Only He can. Give it to Him. That’s right. This home is only temporary. It is not our final place. Praying that you will find His peace.
    Love, Pam

  107. It might help you to know that you are not the only one overwhelmed by projects, pain, and life in general. There is something to ‘venting’ that helps lift the spirit, but more importantly, venting to people who understand, who sympathize, who care about your journey….and the struggles along the way.

    We moved to a ranch, and had an enormous task in getting the home there fit to live in. We had the same things: hideous flooring that was full of ‘ranchness’ that you DO NOT want toddlers and babies crawling around on; a 8×8 kitchen that was beyond scary; no money to make the necessary repairs (if you touched any of the boxes around the light-switches or outlets, you got a shock…nothing was grounded or wired properly)……aaakkk! Yet, yet, yet…..it all got done. and it was beautiful.

    For your closet doors…sliding doors can be major finger-pinchers, as well as not always fitting, sliding the way you’d like. Consider hanging a curtain suspended with a shower-tension rod across the opening (or a regular curtain rod). You can customize each bedroom with the fabrics (and flat sheets work really well for this, too. Can use fusible webbing, iron in a rod-pocket, and you’re done) Then, when you have more time or the inclination….finish those doors the way you’d like.

    In the meantime, something is crossed off your list, and looks great.

  108. Hi Traci, I used to have days like that (back when I was an active duty military member, young mother, and active in various ministries in my church). Now, my house is very quiet. I live for the occasional text or phone call from my (now) grown children. I have all day to myself to quilt or do whatever I want. Many times I read blogs from young moms and see the pics of your beautiful kiddos and want to weep. I miss the smell of sweaty boys or the hectic pace mommyhood requires. You are a well grounded lady and will get past this. take a deep breath and make a list of what is bugging you the most and tackle things one at a time. But most of all realize that the most important thing is the time you spend on and with your family. Thank you for letting me weigh in on this. God Bless you-Sissy

  109. I know that this is a weird thing to say, BUT I feel so much better after this post!!! I don’t feel alone and isolated like there is something “wrong” with me! My husband just doesn’t understand what I do all day long (he doesn’t do any type of work in or around the house, yet he works long hours at “work”). I always hear how so and so’s house is always picked up, etc. like there is something wrong with me. Like I am LAZY. I don’t have to tell you that I never stop! He only sees others’ houses when they are presentable for a party or get together, etc. He isn’t picking up on the reality of it all. It’s funny that when other people “pop” in at my house, they actually say that they do not know I keep it all together! Husband was looking at the landscaping the other day and said that it’s great that we do not get many weeds. I told him that the weeding fairy comes regularly when he is not looking. Along with the cleaning fairies, too. Ha!

  110. you are such an inspiration to me!!! I feel your pain in a way – we are turning our BIG RED BARN into our house – we lived in 850 sq feet for 4.5 year with 2 small kids at the start where 2 and 4 and now they are 7 & 9 – they had to share a small bedroom – ROUGH!!!—-but after 1.5 yrs and doing 80% of the work ourselves we have almost completed and will live in about 2600 sq feet – but still have a lil ways to go—we work full time and hubs has went thru 3 jobs in the past 5 or 6 years :-( Bones are tired – debt is high – energy is low – but I know that this place will be used for GOD the ultimate provider and your blog email of being spent went into my KEEPERS file – to reread because even the ones who look like they have it ALLLLL together —-get TIRED!!! your scripture and ALL of that was JUST what I needed for this last few months of finishing our barn….I have it together to start blogging it and want to show the process but get over whelmed thinking of putting all that together but hope to in the near future!!! my God bless you and your family and KEEP LETTING HIS LIGHT SHINE THROUGH YOU IN THIS DARK WORLD THAT NEEDS HIM MORE THAN EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Love from Alabama

  111. Traci,

    I am so sorry life is crazy for you. I will be praying for you. In these times of struggle it is so hard to keep our focus on the Lord but just keep your focus on the Lord and he will carry you through!!! Thank you for the encouragement this post is what I need today! I have been struggling too! Thank you for everything you do! I really enjoy your blog and especially the videos! Keep Shining for Jesus!!!

    Lots of Love Your Sister in Christ!

  112. Love you TRACI!!!! Love your heart! I just wished I lived closer, I would come over and bring the ice cream, and we could spend time in the swing praying together. You are an amazing woman and I have been truly blessed by your friendship. Hope you feel better soon

    Marilyn C.

  113. Hey Trac,

    I’m so sorry you’re feeling so overwhelmed right now. :-( I know that feeling and sometimes I find that if I just tell myself I’m not going to worry about all the stuff that’s overwhelming me anymore, things magically seems to settle down. I’ve found that it also helps to ask your hubby to help with the laundry!

    Love you lots and wish I could give you a big squeeze today!

  114. thanks for this post and your honesty! it’s so helpful becaues it is so easy to convince yourself that “everyone else can keep a clean house” and “everyone else always cooks dinner”, etc. So funny, i read this post today too-i just told my 8 yr old i have to pick up the house because she had friends coming over and she said “you don’t have to pick up, that’s why their mom likes this house, it’s messy like hers” haha!

  115. Awesome post. Thanks for being real. I think a lot of us put on our happy “bloggy faces” and behind the happy posts we don’t have everything together. I get so down when I start reading blogs from stay at home moms and think about how I’m carting my baby off to a sitter all day 5 days a week. But do I talk about my real feelings on my blog? No, I post the cute pictures and the fun things we did on vacation. Sometimes we all need to just get real with each other so that one blogger isn’t put up on a pedistal. We’re all human and we all have those days when the world is crumbling in around us. (Somehow those days come around once a month at a specific time if you know what i mean.) Anyway, thanks again for a heartfelt post. I need to look at posting a non-fluff post and being real too!

  116. you’re being real and that’s sometimes really hard to do. thank you so much for sharing! it encourages me to know that i’m not the only one who doesn’t have it all together :) i so enjoy your blog and reading about your projects! thank you!

  117. Traci, don’t be so hard on yourself, you are an amazing woman. You just moved to a new house and there are many things to do. But, guess what, it does take time to do so. I know you want to work your magic around your house, rearrange, decorate, update, etc. Slow down, smell the roses. You are blessed immensely. Just take a look at your boys and hubby. Your house will be the beautiful home you want to create; it will take time and we will be there (cyberly) to see you tranform it.

  118. I think we all feel overwhelmed sometimes…stuck, frozen! We work to raise kids, be good wifes, maintain strong friendships, work, craft, redo and refurnish, plan meals, clean house, volunteer, entertain, relax, and, oh yea, blog about it too! :)

    I have read your blog for quite some time now and never commented until today, but your post spoke to me. I have related to many other posts as well. (I also lost my mom suddenly and too young…and we were best friends.) I hope you don’t mind me coming out of the woodwork after all this time.

    I’ve lived in the same house for four years and still have walls without pictures hanging on them. I never completely finished my daughter’s nursery…now she is 2-1/2 and the nursery belongs to my newborn son. That’s part of the reason I don’t have a blog about all the crafts & decorating & baking that I do…because most of the stuff getting “done” is in my head! haha. So, what do I do? I cut myself some slack. I have two kids under three and I work outside of the home so things take longer to get done around these parts.

    Anyway, I just thought I would throw my two cents in. You are doing a wonderful job…in all your roles! Thank you for sharing your life with us!

  119. Hi Traci! I just found your blog from mustard seeds tweet and omg you have made me feel so much better! (Not that you were having a bad day) but “you are overwhelmed to” yeah, I’m not alone. I’m a new blogger (3 weeks old) and all these blogs I read are so inspiring but then I seem to get so overwhelmed b/c our new home is not my style :( I have so much to do….I don’t even know where to start sometimes…..so I’ve adopted (well trying) the “one day (room) at a time slogan”…Love your blog!

  120. I’m pregnant, working, and have 2 kids (plus a husband, 2 dogs, and a hamster)… I was just surfing the web, overwhelmed about the piles of things I need to clean in my house but feeling too tired to get to any of it.

    Thank you so much for sharing the REAL pictures of your home. I think there should be an entire website dedicated to real pictures. I love interior design and keeping my house looking cute, but honestly it doesn’t happen all the time. I love your pictures & your house :) hope you’re doing better today!

  121. Would it make anyone feel better to know of my now deceased grandmother’s similar tale to console me when i was feeling overwhelmed ? They reared seven daughters and my grandfather was an architect builder who moved his family into his project when it became liveable (not finished) because he had sold the newly finished home they were currently living in. This was a series of moves over the years. She would feel guilty about complaining about all the moves when anyone else would be envious of the fact that she was always living in NEW homes. So I think this is sort of a wife mother dilemma. Also think you may be experiencing a bit of the same fatigue Grandma was feeling.

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