It involves clothes, shopping, laundry, cleaning, mending, letting skirts down and sewing buttons on.  It involves friends: my husband's, my children's, my own, and endless arrangements to get together, letters, invitations, telephone calls and transportation hither and yon.  My mind reels with it.  What a circus act we women perform every day of our lives.  It puts a trapeze artist to shame.1

I'm not even going to try to tell you how to simplify your life.  There are whole books written about it.  But honestly, what would you choose to delete?  The elements of our lives we might want to eliminate – illness, housecleaning, parent-teacher conferences – we can't.  The things we could get rid of, like ballet lessons and mom's night out are things we want to keep.  I think we are going to have to learn to find peace not by simplifying our lives, but right smack in the middle of our busy-ness.

Excerpted from "Secrets of a Mid-Life Mom," copyright 2004 by Jane Jarrell. Used by permission of NavPress/Pinon Press. All rights reserved. For copies of the book visit

Jane Jarrell, an over-forty mother of a daughter in elementary school, is a popular radio, TV, and conference speaker.  She is a charter member of the MOPS National Speakers Bureau.  She has authored eleven books, including "Mom Matters."  Jane and her family make their home in Richardson, Texas.