Truth, Beauty

I live a really beautiful life. I have a sweet husband, gorgeous, inspiring children, a wonderful home, lots of yummy food to eat, a drive to be creative, a yoga class I love, supportive family, and great friends. 

But my life is also far from perfect. My husband is gone on business a LOT. My children kind of drive me crazy some days. We have issues with our rental home all the time. Many types of food make me seriously sick. I have a lot of design (and other) work to do from home that can often be stressful. I have to miss yoga for things like illness, a busy schedule, or general exhaustedness. My family lives far, far away. And I rarely get to spend time with friends because their lives echo my own.

But I am no less grateful for the life I live. I feel like I've tried to keep it pretty real on this blog. I don't think I paint a shiny, endlessly happy existence where I am just exuding perfection and joy. I know there are blogs out there that do that. And lately it's been a topic of conversation that those blogs are making it harder for the rest of us who trudge through a difficult day here and there. I do know that when I have great days filled with beauty, I definitely want to document them. Instagram has been awesome for that. It is wonderful to scroll through those shots and see how much beauty there really is going on in my life. But check Instagram today and you'll see things are getting a little messy. And when it comes to blogging, I have no interest in painting a false picture of my life. (Note: I think for me it's more about the small miracles that happen every day, especially when things seem to be going wrong. I don't think it's really about a good day vs. a bad day. It's rarely just one or the other. And a lot of it has to do with my outlook on things. Except for when Wes has been gone for a week. Then all bets are off...)

As a response to a particularly lively chat going on in the blogosphere and on Facebook, I thought I would post about my day TODAY. Just for kicks. :)

First of all, Wes is out of town. Again. On a really great job shooting a PetSmart commercial. So that is a blessing. But I am here holding down the fort. More like the fort is holding me hostage. The kids whirl around me in a fit of fights and fancy, loving and hating each other very dramatically when Wes is away. They feel the imbalance, and take it out on each other, and on me. But sometimes that's just the way life is. Plus I've been feeling a little under the weather, which is not a surprise for me. I have small ailments everyday. I've learned to live with them. Most of the time they aren't that bad. But sometimes it makes me unmotivated to DO anything, which is the part that's problematic. The laundry piles up. The dishes don't get washed. 

We all have days like this! But when we post about them on our blogs, we tend to get sympathy comments. Sometimes I don't need sympathy, I just want to post about how my day went. Empathy is fine ("I hear ya, sister!"), but I really hate feeling like someone's feeling bad for me. Because there is just no reason for it! Remember: beautiful life, not perfect life. That's A-OK.

So in the spirit of things, I've provided a stunning photo exposé on how things are progressing at the Johnson household on day 5 of Wes being gone:

Just look at the color and texture on this dining room table. It's collage at its finest.

Master Bedroom in Low Light, by Finn and Maya

A true culinary masterpiece.

Maya's creative space to brainstorm and experiment. (She's been experimenting for a week...)

Fashion is at least folded!

And FINALLY one clean room in the house! The media room. It's in the basement. It's cold. No one goes down there, so it stays clean. This is where I breathe a sigh of relief at 8:30pm every night. 

How's your day shaping up? Any small successes? Big ones? Post them! Day going downhill fast? Tell us about it. But only if you have time and energy, of course. ;) 

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Me said...

Wow. You are still awesome tho :)

Unknown said...
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Unknown said...

Thank you for your honesty! In this age of internet, where we live our lives on social media, it is so easy to get caught up in comparing our lives to others and feeling disappointed. I have done it myself (still do!).

Trying to get my own blog up and running, I find myself NOT posting as much during times of challenge, because I don't want to come across as a "Debbie Downer". But you really struck a chord with me when you wrote "We all have days like this! But when we post about them on our blogs, we tend to get sympathy comments. Sometimes I don't need sympathy, I just want to post about how my day went." I don't want sympathy either. I just like the kinship that comes from shared experiences. I want to know that in this crazy world, I am not alone in my challenges, so THANK YOU for "bearing all". It has helped more than you'll ever know.


(THen I had to go delete and edit, because imy comment wasn't right. GRRR...)

Unknown said...

I'm still in my jammies at almost 2:00 in the afternoon. And I smell. And I've managed to get nothing done on my to-do list yet. But the baby is fed and alive! I *might* get dressed soon, but we'll see. I think I'm just going to let things slide today. :)

Ali said...

Um, when did we start sharing a house? Yours looks JUST like MINE! Minus the basement media room, which I'm envious of. All I have in the basement is Mike's clutter, which he calls his "office." My "office" is a third of the dining room table. Grrr. And Mike is also out of town—as usual, so I'm right there with you! I like to call it Married single motherhood.

Mindi said...

I truly appreciate your honesty. I recently became addicted to Instagram and have started reading all these new blogs lately and it's true...some bloggers create a real perfect picture of their life and it's hard to not compare yourself to them. So I find it refreshing when someone 'admits' to having an off day/week/etc. Love your blog and Instagram pics by the way!

Allison said...

This is the first time I've stumbled upon your blog, due to the awesome cjane conversation today. My 4yr old plopped down beside me while I was looking at the "real life" pictures of your house and she says to me "Hey mom, that's our house? You're looking at our house?" and I smiled to myself and said "Yup, I'm definitely looking at our house". Thanks for keeping it real today!

Mia said...

Your honesty is so appreciated! Blogs seem to paint an unrealistic picture of family life that can leave so many of us feeling "inadequate". Seeing a photo of dirty dishes makes me feel like I'm at home!

Crystal said...


I linked into your blog from another blog you design, and when I got here I realized we know one another- well our kids are in kindergarten together. Beautiful blog! Love the post. My house is in a similar state and I just feed my kids french toast for dinner.... again. And I have a spouse at home with me all day.

zielone-buty said...

I'd really like your "beautiful life, not perfect life" :)
Have a good day, today. (Maybe even, a calms or clean one!)

emi. said...

I loved cjane's fb conversation today. so happy you posted this. and, i totally agree! it's the sympathy that kills me when i want to write about something more "messy." I just want to write something as a witness to the occurrence. but, then people get distracted by the sad part of it. it's tricky. i'm determined to be better about just posting despite the sympathy issue.

Maria Medeiros said...

Love your honesty!

Shan said...

The reason why I feel I connect with you, even though we have never met, is because 1. We have a common faith 2. You are a genuine person. You like to keep things real and down to earth...I try to be that way as well...I love that in others. This is just one of many posts that clearly shows that about you. 3. You're creative and share that with others. 4. We both like short hair ;) 5. You are sweet enough to comment on my IG photos...and say nice things too. lol Anyway, as for all of us, none of us are perfect. And you are so right, it's not always bad days versus good days. The good and bad can coexist together in the same day. It's exactly how we choose to look at what is around us that makes a difference. However, I don't think it is bad for people to feel sympathy or empathy for anything your going through. I know where you are coming from, but sometimes it is good for THEM to have those feelings for you. I am totally rambling and not getting across what I want to say clearly. This is what happens when you are crash reading The Time Keeper for a book club that's meeting tomorrow night. {which is SO good, btw} Just keep on keeping it real because obviously we all love that about you. Hugs! Your IG friend, Shan @familybringsjoy

brookeisacrazylady said...

wow how did i miss this points. very wise lyndsay i must say :) i agree and feel the same. hope you are loving utah. please go and visit renee for me :)

brookeisacrazylady said...

post not points....i need to sleep :)

Maren said...

It's always nice to know that behind the clean, efficient, always-happy fronts we put up on social media, that we're really all struggling along in the same boat. Thank you for keeping it real!

Shelly Cunningham said...

I loved this post! So honest. It feels like a breath of fresh air when we see another mama struggling with the same things we do- messy houses, absent parents, lack of "friend dates", and kids that (can) drive us crazy!

Thank you for sharing!