The Thing You Need To Stop Doing


Last weekend, as I was rushing around trying to nurse a newborn, pick up a house, finalize Edel Gathering table centerpieces, do laundry and add on an addition to the house {kidding}, Scott looked at me and smiled.

“What?” I replied.

“Stop trying to do too much,” he said with a small chuckle.

By nature, I’m a doer. Always have been. Self-proclaimed Type A, OCD, take charge kinda gal. I’m the yes girl. Usually. But for some reason when I heard stop trying to do too much it stuck.

I’m the kind of gal that as I’m heading out the door for an errand I’m also starting the dishwasher, throwing in a load of laundry, picking up dirty socks, putting shoes in baskets, brushing my teeth, grabbing a glass of water (don’t forget the lemon!), straightening a couch pillow, putting a stamp on a letter, turning off lights, flushing a toilet and THEN I can load little (and big) people in the van. I settle myself into the driver’s seat, look at the van clock and mutter *$%!

Why do I do that? For the love of all that’s holy, WHY??

Is that a mom thing? A Type A thing? A Kathryn thing?

The Edel Gathering was amazing and you will hear about that more very soon. But my big take-home message? Start listening more and doing less. I won’t ever be able to shake who I truly am, but I can be more purposeful when my mouth answers, YES!

For me, it’s been little things. Maybe the same is true for you. Someday soon it might be the big things. Who knows.

All I know is that having a newborn in the house again has been good for me. Oh so good. I joke that God gave me six kids because I am just that stubborn when it comes to learning lessons. Slow learner, indeed. But, at least I know what causes it!

It’s late, I’m rambling and Gianna needs to eat. I’ll be back later this week with some deep thoughts, funny stories and all that jazz.


  1. Nell on July 29, 2014 at 8:04 am

    I love this. Can’t wait to hear your take on Edel. It is hard to stop doing and start listening, but we got a chance to begin, right? The centerpieces were breathtaking!

  2. Nicole on July 29, 2014 at 8:50 am

    I think it’s partially a mom-thing. We see more that needs to be done in a day in our households than anyone else. I will say that I have had to let some things slide because I do want to enjoy my children. For instance, it won’t be long before my daughter no longer runs her imaginary bases in the living room to match the players she sees on TV while watching baseball with her dad and brother. I love watching her and the boys react. I miss that if I am running around vaccuuming the house while picking up clutter, and loading dishes into the dishwasher, all while tallying my mental to-do list.

    I have a dear friend whose parents were in a serious car accident. Both sustained major injuries and we have been praying like crazy to help them (and her family) with recovery. She’s like you – a do-er. Always first to volunteer for carpools, soccer party organizer, VBS, PTA board, etc. We talked just last night how she now realizes that she can’t do everything, and has to say no. This she says as she came straight from the hospital to pick up 3 extra children that she was going to feed dinner to in addition to her own and then drop off later that evening at said 3 children’s homes. I think it’s innate in mom’s everywhere. We just need to recognize it, adjust when we know we need it, listen to those around us when we don’t recognize it, AND enjoy the ride.

    Cheers, Kathryn! I salute you and your desire to “start listening more and doing less.”

  3. Verdina on July 29, 2014 at 9:13 am

    OMG, Kathryn! I can hardly believe that was me X years ago.

    My favorite story is about when my kids were, probably, 2 & 3. I belonged to an adoptive mothers club in Littleton, CO. We often did things with the kids. One morning someone called and said, “We’re taking the kids to the Airplane Park; wanna go?” My response: “Oh, darn! This is the day I clean the living room.” Can you believe that? I can’t either. That was the LAST TIME I passed up a chance for an adventure to clean my house. We survived! Then, I was always the first to volunteer for anything at church or the kids’ schools. A few years ago, my sister told me over and over to learn to say NO. It took a while, but I have managed to let the “young folks” step up.

    Being old has some advantages! I do enjoy my time with my grandchildren (my son has 7 and they live very close).

    Life is good! Relax! Praise God!

  4. Nancy Piccione on July 29, 2014 at 9:15 am

    How appropriate for you to post this, and for all of us, to read this, on the feast of St. Martha. I love her not just because I’m a Martha, but because of her great faith. I always tear up when I read John 11 on the death and resurrection of Lazarus: “And even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give to you.” Such a great patron for moms.

    • Nancy Piccione on July 29, 2014 at 9:43 am

      I meant to also add: take a look at the second reading from the Office of Readings for today, where St. Augustine beautifully reflects on Mary/Martha. I laughed a little at what he had to say: “No, there will be none of those tasks there”

      • Kathryn on August 2, 2014 at 9:55 pm

        I loved this Nancy – what a great reminder.

  5. Michelle @ Endless Strength on July 29, 2014 at 11:07 am

    You running around to get out for an errand looks a lot like me. WEll, in my case, that is how I get out of the house to go to work on a school day. Crazy.

    I also need to find more purpose for my “Yes.”

  6. Mary on July 29, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    I say the same thing about Miss Courtney – God knew I was too stubborn and hard headed to hear what He needed me to do without her. LOL! So sit a moment holding your sweet little ones and sip a nice cold glass of Dr. Pepper. Breathe deeply and all will be well…from one OCD Type Mama to another…

  7. Susan on July 29, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    This is why we should be neighbors, because I would kidnap you and make you come and sit on the porch and drink a beer with me while Will and Ben watch the kids for us! 🙂 It’s so hard to be a Mary when you’re a Martha at heart. I struggle with some of the very same things, Kathryn. I hope time and wisdom will ease our “doing” behaviors and inspire our “resting” ones.

    • Kathryn on August 2, 2014 at 9:54 pm

      Oh man, I wish we were. At least I can text you!! Someday (I mean it) we’ve got to get our kids together. Our house is always open, Susan!

  8. Rachael on July 30, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    I’m really interested to hear more of your musings on this! I always feel like I should slow down, but at the same time, as mothers with larger-than-average families (I have five) I think so much of this is just sheer survival–I feel like if I sit down for more than a minute I’ll get so behind I’ll never catch up on the day. I’m constantly multi-tasking and I absolutely have to knit every day when I’m reading to my kids because otherwise it feel so odd to have empty hands!

    But interestingly enough, I blew out a tendon in a trail running race tonight, so I guess I’m going to be forcibly slowed down over the next couple of days. Good thing I’ve got the whole neighborhood coming over tomorrow to celebrate Harry Potter’s birthday, right?

    • Kathryn on August 5, 2014 at 3:22 pm

      I saw the pics of the HP party. Awesome sauce! Hope your tendon is feeling better.

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