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May 31, 2009


You have so many realizations in print that many of us struggle with, but can't seem to internalize... I related strongly with your comment "They're just trying to earn a living, balance hectic lives, and find a little free time." I'm in that boat. I don't want out, just trying to find some time to row less and enjoy the scenery more. Thanks for a delightful post.

Such a fabulous post, Christine. Your home and family are a reflection of the fact that you love your life and the things you are doing.

"... for a task to be valuable, it doesn't have to be weighty, solemn, or make history. It just has to be important to me."

This quote incapsulates what many, including myself, take too long to figure out. I have realized that I can live very simply and, after all, less stuff is easier to organize than lots of stuff. I need very little to be happy. I have great friends, possessions sufficient for my needs (or nearly so ;), the love a supportive and quality family (but not a perfect family), and goals that inspire me.

I guess it's about seeing a life for what it is and working hand in hand with God to refine this life a bit more. We can always do better-- but that realization ought to be looked at as an opportunity rather than a disappointment for what we are not, what we don't have, and how we fall short.

Thanks for your post Christine. It's an inspiring and honest story.

...and PS: I can vouch for how awesome Christine is!!! big kiss, lanola kathleen stone

I am always inspired by "mommyprenuers". We have many in our church (ward) where young mom's are launching home-based businesses like you have. I have done an interior design business from home for the last seven years. Next year I will be an empty-nester and my time will be more my own... I can take what I am doing to the next level. I am grateful, as you will be, to have started something I love from which I can build.
My mother did the same thing. She studied in college to be a dental hygienist, but really didn't want to keep doing that. As she reflected, back then women had three choices, teacher, dental hygientist or nurse. When her last child was in high school she went for more schooling and then launched her home-based financial planning business. When we all finally flew the nest, she took the business outside.
My mom, in reflecting on the ride, would remind me that there is so much time to develop our talents and careers. She feared that my generation (I graduated high school in '81) was trying to do it all at once. Enjoy the ride and especially enjoy the children, she would remind me. There is plenty of time.
That was hard to remember or believe when I had crying two year olds. But I clearly see the wisdom now. My crying two year old is going off to college next year and I have years, God-willing, ahead of me.
You are enjoying the ride, not sitting still, respecting your passions and desires and honing your talents along the way. It's fun to see the path that develops when we are true to ourselves. Keep going!

At the risk of sounding arrogant, I am good at lots of things. In fact, I venture many women are as well. But, I learned several years ago that just because I am good at something doesn't mean I have to do it. Rather, what I HAVE to do is what brings me joy - deep, soul-satisfying joy.

Wow. That realization really brought things into focus.

Loved the post, Christine. I'm excited to check out your website.

Funny how the English major doesn't really change your life all that much, does it? Mine applies to almost nothing in my world now, and yet I'm glad to have it.

I suspect you're on the right track, which is a good thing for those of us following you!

Oh gosh, Christine, was this a fabulous post or what?! After my B.S., I vocally announced that I was applying to law school - did so, was accepted, but just couldn't do it - I did this two years in a row - applying, declining the acceptance b/c I couldn't wrap my mind around the fact that what I had stated I wanted to do (after all, don't all smart girls go to law school) wasn't what I wanted at all. And Whitney, good idea to compare what we like to do with that we are actually doing. I always appreciate these moments to step back and re-evaluate where I am going.

I love Christine's insightful thoughts and I really enjoyed all the comments so far on this topic. I think it's probably a good thing that our 20-year-old selves wouldn't be too happy with us decade by decade later. As the years creep by, I've learned how much happier I am with the wisdom I learn in each stage and the insight I've gained to fill my life with what really matters (i.e. less stuff, more time with those I love). And I'm sure I have much, much, much more to learn.

I love Whitney's encouragement for women to dream and then work to fulfill their dreams. I also love the idea that we can fulfill many dreams in many stages of our lives. Right now I'm dreaming of the laundry being done and a few lunch dates with girlfriends being pinned down - in a few years the dreams will change. Here's to enjoying the ride!

I love this!

Great article! Letting go of fear, and following your passion are some of the hardest things to do. I have finally figured that one out and now I am at home with my three kids, while I put my career and education on hold. Trying to live in the present and live each moment to the fullest is my goal now. Thanks for this great reminder. Thank goodness that our college selves are not in control!

Read it and loved it! Christine is an amazing person!

Great way to start of June on Dare to Dream!

Sometimes what we want, is right there in front of us and we make it harder than it needs to be. Or sometimes what we want, we worry is not going to be acceptable to those who surround us! When you trust yourself, and listen to that voice inside of you, usually it works out! Here's to trusting yourself! Here's to hands that are usually covered with chocolate, carving pumpkins, rollerskating and looking at rocks! Here's to those valuable tasks that we did not take into account when we were in our 20's and planning our very important lives!
Thanks for the reminder that it is important to be true to what your heart is telling you.


Elder Eyring gave an amazing discourse entitled Education for Real Life. He says this: "Your life is carefully watched over, as was mine. The Lord knows both what He will need you to do and what you will need to know. He is kind and He is all-knowing. So you can with confidence expect that He has prepared opportunities for you to learn in preparation for the service you will give. You will not recognize those opportunities perfectly, as I did not. But when you put the spiritual things first in your life, you will be blessed to feel directed toward certain learning, and you will be motivated to work harder. You will recognize later that your power to serve was increased, and you will be grateful." Your degree may have not lead you to where you thought you were going, but it did expose you to great literature and text composition and analysis which understanding now brought you to this place where you can edit and organise. Your mind was being trained to do this even though you may not have known that at the time.

One of the many reasons I love to call Christine--Friend. I too majored in English, but felt compelled as Heidi did to go to law school. Then life happened. My dream was never to go to law school, but as Heidi said, smart girls go to law school. Twenty years(ugh)later, on the far side of that, in an attempt to "create" a "simpler life" I have moved my family to a small farm in New Hampshire. But, to my dismay, life was STILL crazy hectic. And I guess it will be and thats great! What I have found through the guidance of insightful friends and family is that happiness is not what, where, when--but HOW. How we look at things, How we do things, How we react to things, How we prioritize things. I am not arguing before the Supreme Court, or shaping any policy--But I am creating world peace on a tiny little farm and shaping tiny little lives with big spirits and thats a dream (most days)! Thanks Christine!

It's hard to admit many of those things out loud even though I feel similar. I wanted and planned on going to medical school in my twenties and now I am so glad it didn't turn out that way.

Thanks for a very eloquent and insightful article.

It's interesting to think about the difference between our younger self's plan and the reality of the life we now lead. Very though-provoking post.

I love how Christine starts out by contrasting her younger self's life plan with what actually happened. In many ways, I am so glad my younger self's life plan didn't turn out exactly. Because it turned out differently I have had the opportunity to do so many things I wouldn't have done otherwise. As others have noted--true happiness is following our own dreams now and realizing our dreams will change as we move through life's stages and that's ok.

Absolutely a wonderful article. I have spent my few free "me" minutes today enjoying your story. I also enjoy painting my daughter's nails and making lunches! I look forward to checking out your site! Take care.

What great thoughts, Christine. I think we're a lot alike! I had the exact same checklist in college, but now I wonder, what was all the rush? I wish now I had taken more time for introspection and really figured out what I liked to do, rather than just focus on a strict timeline of what I thought I should do. I even had my Korean mission companion tell me (in the minutes before I left to go home) that if I wasn't engaged within 6 months of returning home, it meant I was a failure as a missionary! She kindly suggested that I try to sit on the plane by some of the more "promising" American elders, just to get a head start! Talk about timeline pressure!
Oh, and I'm so jealous you got to meet with FlyLady! She has been one of my heroes for almost 7 years. I found her site shortly after my twins were born and she really saved my life.
I look forward to reading more great ideas on your blog!

Wonderful! I know my high school self vs. my college self vs. my now self would love to get in a room and discuss where my life has gone. Of course I wouldn't change anything, I've had way too much fun!

Christine: You're so right that sometimes the path you're on isn't the one you should take. But that can be hard to admit, especially when you're so invested in your plan.

Your post also speaks to the variety we as women can have in ours lives. We can pursue a pre-kids career, a stay-at-home mom career, a post-kids career. When we put away the corporate ladder mentality of the male-based work model we can have a life full of experiences rather than just resume filing achievements.

P.S. I could totally relate to your line "I'd always been so vocal about my goals (I'm still learning the value of saying less, a lot less) that I was just plain embarrassed not to follow through." I, too, think I tell more than I need to. (And now with blogging and the internet we're all at risk for providing "too much information"--or, in texting lingo, TMI.) However, fear of failing (or jinxing something I want) does keep me from talking about job interviews, or article pitches, or even my book until I really knew it was a real deal. Disappointment, when it happens, is easier when it isn't so public.

I'm glad that you have found what makes you happy. Sometimes I still struggle with what it is I'm suppose to be doing with my life. Then I look around at my six boys and remember that it's them that will carry on my legacy for me.

We talk so much about the courage to chase dreams. We talk less about the courage it takes to set a dream down, or to change our minds. Some dreams from youth may stay with us, but it's a blessing we don't have to answer to our young selves forever. Thanks for sharing this.

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About this blog

  • When I took a sabbatical from Wall Street to pursue a different dream and help others live theirs, I learned that women in the U.S. may be placated, even pampered, but because we aren't dreaming, we are also desperate and depressed. Drawing on a variety of sources, ranging from academic studies to pop culture, dare to dream encourages us to dream. And then to act on our dreams.


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