Sorry I’m Late…

I used to be an on-time person. Not particularly early, (unlike those who show up annoyingly early before things are ready and we all know who those people are), but at least arriving at the proper hour. However, lately, (no pun intended), I have just been, well – late.

I stay up late, my kids stay up late, sleep late (don’t judge- they are homeschooled and that means we can), my husband works late. And I run late.

I’ve become that friend who gets there last. The one who calls to say, “Sorry, but I’m running a little late…”

I’m even late on the newest technology.  We still own VCR’s, we still have one TV that isn’t a flat screen and I just got an iPhone 5.  But apparently the 6 is way better. Or so I hear.  So please, just let me have my fun and enjoy my thumb sensor unlocky- thingy, panorama pictures and be happy for a little while.

I will say that one thing I don’t do late is sleep. Late, that is. Well, sometimes I don’t sleep either, but I digress.

This year, (every year), I am late decorating for Christmas. At least according to Instagram and Facebook where I see all my friends’ tinseled trees and evergreen-ed mantels.

But I’m working on it. Last night was the Neely-Annual-Picking-Out-the-Tree-and-Family-Dinner-Out. We got started late. Remember the hard-working husband who works late?

After proper tree-stand adjusting, branch-cutting and the boy’s box-tossing- from -attic antics (if any of my Christmas ornaments are broken….), it was late.  “I’m sorry kids, but 11:30 pm is a little too late to start decorating the tree…” Even I have to draw the line.

So Josh slept late. And was late for school. And taking him late means homeschool starts late. Again.

Daddy used to say, “I’m a day late and a dollar short,” but I never remember him being either.

Unlike me. And I can also excuse my tardiness with “Better late than never.” That is if I’m going to start quoting  clichés.

Yet, somehow in the business of life, it all gets  done. At least the important things.

So the tree will wait until tonight after church.  Although, I really could do it today. I could squeeze it in while my girl is at work, between school and all the other stuff I have to do. I could even decorate it just the way I wanted – all symmetrical and color-coordinated. Not that it would be wrong…

But then it wouldn’t be “our” tree.  And the point of it all is to do it together.

Isn’t it about the journey rather than the destination? Another cliché. I must stop.

So here is an original:

Isn’t the doing it better than it just getting done?

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Here is a peek at my naked tree and mantle scattered with things just sort of left there and tossed upon it. Definitely not my usual decked-out mantle decor.

But I kind of like it. It’s simple and a bit rustic. I may decide to keep it.

Some things we come upon by accident. Sometimes they come late.

I’m thinking that late doesn’t always mean after the proper time.

Just maybe, sometimes late is the perfect time.






My Coffee Table Life

I enjoy decorating.  Finding and placing and arranging things pretty. My house is now full of things I love from my childhood home that scatter memories of those I love and those waiting for me in Heaven.

I pin décor and arrangements on Pinterest – pictures of mantels and shelves, bookcases and walls.

And decorated coffee tables.

There was a day when my coffee table held pretty things. Strategically placed and dusted and shined.

Slowly, the coffee table became a place where I propped my feet as I nursed my babies. It has held finger prints of toddlers scaling its sides. It is now often sticky with cereal milk, or pancake syrup. It serves as a Yahtzee and Uno-playing table.

No beautiful coffee table books reside there, but instead a menagerie of stuff that manages to take up residence at some point on this four-legged stuff-holder:  Southern Living, homeschool books, an IPad, ear buds, DVDs cases, Josh’s white rags, my tattered Bible and journal, pens, pencils, and various remotes (all in a pretty basket, of course).

Not that ALL of that is there at the same time.

Well, maybe sometimes.

But my coffee table reflects my life. Not only my life now, but how it has evolved.

From freakishly- tidy and arranged to functional and lived-in.

The table is scuffed and the stain is rubbed off in places. Feet places.  Truth be told, we could use a new one.

I clean it, polish it, straighten things on it, and cull out unnecessary items. Sometimes I consider placing some pretty candles or an arrangement of books.

But then I think of the feet that will prop on it and decide to leave those things for the shelves.

Those can stay pretty. The coffee table for now will be functional.

I may or may not have years to come of “pretty coffee table”.  I’ve heard moms say that when their children are grown and gone, and they can have things the way they want them. Or empty-nester moms with impeccably-decorated houses who say it wasn’t’ always that way.

But with my Joshua, I may always have a “child” around.  And I hope to have grandbabies scale my coffee table one day in the future.

So I can gaze at Pinterest and lovely tables. Mine is fine for now. But I may go clean last night’s pizza sauce off of it.