Not So Fast: On Downward Mobility and Load Limits


*UPDATE* Stacy, Commenter #1, you should comment more often! You’re the winner of Ann Kroeker’s Not So Fast, and for some reason I feel like this is extra special because Random Number Generator never seems to pick #1 . You’re going to love it! Now right away, everybody else, go buy this book. It’s a must-read.

The following post is from my amazing husband, Seth (aka @motherletter, from MotherLetter.com) regarding a book that we strongly recommend and want to offer to you. Enjoy!

——–

Not So Faston downward mobility and load limits

“We are more than the sum total of all that we accomplish in a given day, week, year, decade or lifetime.  …There’s more to life than what we do.”  Ann Kroeker, Not So Fast, p. 41 (emphasis added).

Dearest Ann Kroeker, writer, sent us a copy of her new book Not So Fast—Slow Down Solutions for Frenzied Families.  In the front cover, she wrote a few kind words, which is most special because Amber and I treasure front-cover sentiments above most monetary gifts.  There is a sense of permanency to them. So this morning, when I found that my youngest son had taken his own writing implement and left his own front cover sentiments, which consist of numerous Pollocksonian squiggles and dots, you can imagine my immediate frustration.

But then I stopped; and I thought, “what would Ann do?”

In Not so Fast, Ann encourages us to slow the pace of daily life—to take the time orient ourselves to something less than the rat race.  Starting in the first Chapter, she asks  “What Are we Missing out On?” As I sat in my squat, comfortable chair reading that question in silence, the Still-Small echoed and answered, “Me.”   Mere sentences later, as if in confirmation, Ann writes:

Even within the Christian subculture, families are zooming, accelerating to stay neck and neck with their neighbors without much thought as to how the pace is affecting their souls.

And with this thesis, Ann examines what life can look like when the Joneses are allowed to go their own way, and we are allowed to go ours.

notsofastsmallcover1Can we move at a pace that encourages our children to see the needs of others, and respond?  Can we move at a pace that allows our kids to explore their faith?  Are we allowing our children enough time to explore their own sense of creativity and art—even if it works its way into the front cover of a treasured book (oh, bother!)?  Or, are we shuttling them from one event to another in hopes that they will find that one activity that will bring them self-satisfaction and pier acceptance? Ann takes these questions head on, examining the virtues of the slower way.

As if this were not enough, Ann writes two must read chapters on our electronic dependency/addiction and on slowing down our children’s sexuality.  These chapters solidify this book as one that needs to be in the home library of every parent.

As I read Not So Fast, I found myself loosening—unwinding enough to examine the path of my family and to ask whether there is a better way.  I questioned whether my pace was slow enough to foster wonder and creativity in my children, whether I moved at a pace slow enough to listen.   And in one of these moments, when Ike asked if I could stop long enough to play a game of checkers, I fought the urge to say “not now, Daddy’s busy,” and instead, said, “betcha can’t beat me.”

And for this, I owe Ann Kroeker a tremendous debt of gratitude.

If you would like to enter here for a chance to win a signed copy of Ann Kroeker’s Not So Fast, all you have to do is leave a comment. For additional entries, spread the word about this post, and leave another comment letting us know. Thank you, always, for hearing our hearts here at theRunaMuck.

*UPDATE* I forgot to say that we’ll use the Random Integer thingy to pick a number this Sunday, September 20th at 6:00 PM CST. Continue entering until then, and Seth mentioned in the comments that if you go ahead and purchase the book, tell us in the comments and that will count for 3 entries!

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53 Comments

Stacy
Reply September 17, 2009

That sounds like a great book! I love your blog...though I don't comment very often (ahem..ever). :(

Thanks for writing from your heart.
Stacy

Whitney
Reply September 17, 2009

Good job, Seth!! I'm definitely retweeting and picking up the book for when I have a family of my own!!

Katie
Reply September 17, 2009

This book looks very interesting - I would love to read it!

susie
Reply September 17, 2009

I've been looking for a book to help me minister to my kids!

Cynthia
Reply September 17, 2009

I'm new to your blog but have loved catching up on all of your posts! This book sounds fantastic. As a new mom to a 5 month old little boy, I already have to remind myself to slow down. He is growing up way to fast already and my husband and I don't want to miss a thing! Thanks for the giveaway!

Becca
Reply September 17, 2009

Sounds like a book we all need to read. Thanks for the heads-up!

Alabama Emily
Reply September 17, 2009

I'd love a copy! We have a 7, 2 and 1 yr old (all girls)! And we are oh so busy! Would love some insight on how to slow down and savor the parts of life that really matter.

Kelly
Reply September 17, 2009

Wow, this sounds very good... I just discovered Ann - I'd love to read her book! (Tweeting this too!)

Missy K
Reply September 17, 2009

This book is on my wishlist!!!

Brad
Reply September 17, 2009

This book looks pretty cool. I'd comment here, but Whit has already. Wait...oh.

the scooper
Reply September 17, 2009

This book sounds amazing, the message being one near and dear to my heart.

chelsea
Reply September 17, 2009

sign me up! hear her talking about it on the radio yesterday and made a mental note about how relevant this book seemed to me at this time in my life. I already foresee the temptation of a frenzied life and my kids aren't even old enough for dance lessons, sports, etc... I want to slow down now, not later. now.

Blessed
Reply September 17, 2009

This is something I've been convicted to do lately - simply slow down

melissa
Reply September 17, 2009

i want one!

Jo@Mylestones
Reply September 17, 2009

Was just talking about this very subject with my friend this a.m. It's only Kindergarten, and already some of my son's friends have activities going every night (soccer, swimming, ballet, etc). I'd love to read the book. I so need the reinforcement and encouragement toward a slower pace.
Off to tweet about it too!
Thanks!!

Minnesotamom
Reply September 17, 2009

Sounds fabulous, and like a book that I should, ahem, slow down and take the time to read.

Kimberly
Reply September 17, 2009

This is a really popular topic among my friends and I. I'd love to learn how to slow down the pace and enjoy life more:)

Elizabeth
Reply September 17, 2009

I follow your blog regularly and love your writing. This sounds like a fantastic book. My friends and I are always discussing how not to get into the over-scheduled trap. Thanks for the recommendation.

Your Husband
Reply September 17, 2009

Based upon your comments, here's what I say:

Buy a copy and let us know. If you win, you can give the give-away copy to a friend and you can study it together. Life really is better with accountability and dialogue anyway.

Who's gonna be first?

Your Husband
Reply September 17, 2009

Oh yea, and if you buy a copy, we'll give you 3 extra entries!

Bethany
Reply September 17, 2009

Would love this book- this is so where our heart is for our family. Thanks!

Britiney
Reply September 17, 2009

What a great book! I'm going to see if I can find a copy. Thanks for the chance to win one.

Tamara
Reply September 17, 2009

Not having purchased or seen it yet, I'm wondering if this would be the kind of book suitable for group study? Always looking for new, purposeful materials for our church Women's Group.

Your Husband (Seth)
Reply September 17, 2009

Tamara,

This would be the perfect group study book. I don't know whether there is a study guide, but it would be perfect. There are "Slow Notes" at the end of each chapter. The Slow Notes encourage you to *do* certain things to explore slowing your pace. In group study, these Slow Notes could be really worthwhile discussion topics.

I highly recommend it for study groups.

Jenna
Reply September 17, 2009

Sounds like a great book - I can't wait to let my future children have time to create and explore! Not everything must be scheduled...

Katrina
Reply September 17, 2009

Sounds like exactly what we are wrestling through right now!

Lora Lynn
Reply September 17, 2009

Yes, please.

Sue
Reply September 17, 2009

The book sounds really good. As a soon-to-be first time Mom, my husband and I were just talking the other night about how kids and parents just run around from one activity to another and we wanted to work hard to avoid that. I'd love a chance to win the book. Thank you!

~Sue

ginny
Reply September 17, 2009

sounds like that would be a perfect book to read on bedrest....i wonder if ann wrote it while on bedrest...you think about these things when slowing down is your only option:)
Ginny Mooney

Allison
Reply September 17, 2009

I need this book! I have been pondering many of these issues lately.

Lauren
Reply September 17, 2009

I would love to read this book. A great reminder that my life does not revolve around my to-do list.

keLi
Reply September 17, 2009

My hubs is dragging me to a "Day of Silence and Sabbath" at a wilderness retreat nearby this Sunday, so this post is quite timely. I say "dragging," not because I don't know the importance of it -- or appreciate how fabulous he is to lead us in that way -- but because, on the great hamster wheel of Mom-dom, slowing down is about as easy as fitting into my pre-pregnancy jeans. Thanks for the recommendation!

amy
Reply September 17, 2009

I'd love to win this book--thanks for hosting the giveaway!

Kelly @ Love Well
Reply September 17, 2009

Wow.

Whether I win or not, that's going to be added to my Amazon Wish List pronto.

John Barber
Reply September 17, 2009

This is great stuff! Even if I don't win the thing (although I'd love to), I'll probably pick it up. For someone with a 10 year old, a six year old, and a 2 year old, it looks great.

brittney
Reply September 17, 2009

I think I recall a mention of this book before it came out some time ago. (And my husband loves books with ink in the front cover as well - even if it isn't addressed to him. His years of working at a library and having permission to finger through the donations and keep the ones he found interesting made for bookshelves overflowing with literature dedicated to others.)

I believe this will be a good book to add to our current collection - with or without front-cover blessing - since we will be learning soon what it will be like to be tossed into a parenting world with the experience only the Lord can prepare us with.

Heather Ackmann
Reply September 17, 2009

Someone else told me about this book recently, but for the life of me I can't remember who. Nice job reviewing Seth!

Audra
Reply September 17, 2009

Great review! It's amazing what you see when you slow down, I am always struck by the worlds in my kids eyes when I really stop and listen to them. We would love a copy of this book!

Terri
Reply September 17, 2009

This sounds like a wonderful book, definitely worth reading! I'm sure my husband would enjoy it, too. Thanks for the opportunity! Blessings!

Jessica
Reply September 17, 2009

Is it possible? to slow down? Ipray, yes.

Jennifer
Reply September 17, 2009

We have recently been talking about needing to just stop sometimes. Seems so hard to follow through with!

Whitney
Reply September 17, 2009

I'm going to look for this ASAP. :)

Amber and Seth - thank you so much for taking time or should I say "slowing down" to share.

Ann Kroeker
Reply September 17, 2009

I'm so humbled by the response to Not So Fast--but obviously it has to do with this glowing review from Seth & Amber! Thank you for sharing your personal insights with all these lovely people. I hope it is meaningful for anyone who picks it up and considers his or her pace of life.

There is not at this moment a study guide, though there are many things that could be discussed in the "Slow Notes" at the end of each chapter. A church near Austin, Texas, is using the book for a discussion group. I asked them if they would be willing to share their discussion notes and questions. If they permit me to, I'll post them on www.NotSoFastBook.com for anyone who wants to use them.

May every reader of this post today have a moment to breathe, think, pray, read, and play a game of checkers with someone (of any age).

So grateful for you!
Ann K.

Melissa
Reply September 17, 2009

Hmmmmmmmm....you can't even fathom the rhythm my husband keeps. I would LOVE to read this with him.
Thanks for the chance!

Tamara
Reply September 17, 2009

That is so generous, Ann... I will look for those notes. I'm up here in Winnipeg, Canada, where we too need to slow down and learn to rest in the Lord!

lizzykristine
Reply September 18, 2009

Book giveaways always make my ears perk up. This one particularly looks like a good read. :)

Angela Murphy
Reply September 18, 2009

This book sounds like something I could really use! Run run run.... it is time to slow down!! I really hope I am the lucky girl!! ;)

Barb
Reply September 18, 2009

Sounds like a good book ... and one that I would read.

Kelly
Reply September 18, 2009

Okey, referenced this in my blog post today too! Don't know if that counts for another entry, but hey, I figured I'd throw it into the mix - the book looks terrific!

Jessica
Reply September 18, 2009

That sounds like a great book! I have spent my married life trying to keep my children on the same page as me with regards to NOT competing with the Joneses. It's rough when the world is pressuring them to do different things.
My New Moto: SIMPLIFY!
Thanks for the opportunity! I hope you pick me! :)

Brooke McGlothlin
Reply September 19, 2009

Would LOVE to read the chapter on sexuality especially...

Brooke McGlothlin
Reply September 19, 2009

retweeting!

Brooke McGlothlin
Reply September 19, 2009

putting on facebook!! (OK...that's all I can do :-)

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