Friday, May 17, 2013
Saturday, May 11, 2013
I sat on the edge of my seat at Meredith’s end-of-year recitation program yesterday. The speaker was about to announce the winners of the cursive penmanship contest.
Thursday, May 09, 2013
Well, that's not true actually. I have always known that I don't want a dog. Other people's animals are okay, except for a friend's dog who always constanly has his nose in my rear end every time I visit her. He is a big dog and his head is just the right height. And he has really bad breath too. And then when I sit down he puts his head in my lap like he wants me to pet him. Seriously bad dog manners!
The reason I don't want a dog is I can barely take care of my four kids. And I'm not really keen on dog hair floating around the house and getting in my food. And dogs smell. And I really don't want the expense. And I complained about having to clean out the fish bowl when we had a fish. So I really don't think I want a dog.
My kids beg for a dog, but I say no. I am so mean.
This brings me to my main point. My stance against dog ownership was confirmed after Meredith participated in a "Foster Chick Care Program" through our local library. We had three chicks, all hens, named March, April, and May.
It was a wonderful, rewarding, and enriching program. The kids really did learn a lot about chick development and the care of animals and that animals are a big responsibility. The temperature in the cage had to be just right and the food and water had to be refilled and everything had to be cleaned often. The kids were entertained by the chicks constantly for about four days into the two-week program. The cage remained clean for about that long too.
Then, on day five, something magical happened. The novelty wore off and, although the kids played with the chicks now and then, it was no longer as interesting or exciting. And cleaning out the cage was, sure as anything, definitely not exciting.
So, this was the best type of pet to have ... one that could be returned after two weeks!
Here is my Meredith with her project:
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Friday, April 26, 2013
Good things can happen when you talk to strangers. I found that out after I struck up a conversation with a lady at my neighborhood pool last June. The kids splashed in the water. I was probably in the water with them, too, wearing my maternity suit. Lori was there with all her kids, and her ever-sunny, attractive disposition. After chatting for a while, Lori invited me to join a semi-monthly mom’s group at her church. I liked this lady. And her group was similar to MOPS, and I loved MOPS. I missed MOPS. So, I said yes.
I knew when I walked through the doors of Lori’s church last fall that I had made the right choice to come. For starters, the smell of coffee permeated the building. There’s nothing that screams “welcome” more loudly than a freshly brewed pot of coffee. But even better, there were so many other moms who were there with smiles on their faces and open hearts—not perfect women but women who wanted the same thing I did. Transparency. Growth. Consolation. Empathy. Encouragement. Time to learn. Time to laugh a little. Space. A place where I could stop working and striving and just be. Just be me. Just be me, and be accepted and loved.
The year before, I had weekly homeschool group. But that didn’t cut it. That was different. Homeschool group serves its own important place, to keep you accountable in your work teaching your children. It’s not a place to relax and be loved on for two hours.
At this mom’s group, older women made us a hot brunch and came to speak to us, and encourage us, and help us recharge our batteries, so we could go home and be better moms.
Last year, I felt so depleted, I cannot adequately explain to you, even after all this time, space, and distance, how depleted I was. I don’t think of myself as a perfectionist but when I think something is important, I will give it 100%. Homeschooling took over my life. I wasn’t able to find balance. All the forces in my life collided together and took me to the brink of desperation.
It is hard for me to write when I am still trying to process my thoughts. In a way, writing helps to distill my thoughts. But, ultimately, I need to ruminate for a while, before I can put it down on paper. I’m still not sure I’m done processing everything that happened last year. But I am starting to get more clarity. In fact, a friend sent me an article (I will repost at some point) a few months ago and suddenly more lights went on. I think I am almost at a point of feeling recovered and like I can put my finger on exactly what happened, where I’m at, and where I want to go from here.
A gal can plan her way, but God directs her steps. I know the things that happen in my life all happen for a reason. All of life is about adjusting and adapting to new situations and new ideas, as we live and read and gain experience.
In any event, I am thankful that I meet Lori at the pool last summer. I am thankful for the very timely mom’s group I have participated in. I am thankful for the love that has flowed down into my life, because of the investment of others. I want to give back more, too, and help others, too.
Here are some cards Clara and Sophia made today for their teachers at this mom’s group. Clara’s teachers are two very sweet, teenage homeschooled girls. Sophia’s teachers are an older mom and a dad who is currently unemployed and enjoys working with kids. They loved their classes so much. They were as blessed as their mom! These volunteers didn’t have to give of their time. They could have been doing other things on those two Friday mornings a month. But they did give of themselves. And we are grateful.
Thank you God that you provide our daily food. And it’s not just literal food. Sometimes the “food” we need is smiling faces, offered friendship, and fresh coffee.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
This year for some reason the kids were ALL really into April Fools Day. Kevin says, "This is your fault Amy. I blame you!" What? I have no idea what he is talking about ...
In any event, all the jokes that were played this year just so happened to be performed on Kevin. And one of them wasn't even discovered until later in the evening. We had to call Clara, who was in bed at her grandma's house, to find out where daddy's gym shorts had been hidden. She immediately revealed the location of his shorts and several other articles of clothing which she had creatively stowed away.
Yes, I really, truly love all my girls. They have a zest for life that makes them simply endearing.
Here are some April Fools Pals, with our annual dirt cake we make.