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Monday, September 2, 2013

Throw your hands up!

To all my fellow parents out there, rest happily tonight.  School starts tomorrow and I for one could not be happier!  :)

We had a great summer!  So busy.  Lots of swimming, lots of parties, lots of time with friends and family.  Last summer was really hard for me--we were all still dealing with the divorce and life just didn't feel normal at all. 

But this summer--it was a blessing.  I fell in love with my children again this summer.  I miss them when they are gone even as I enjoy the quiet.  They are truly amazing kids and for the first time ever (I seriously mean EVER), I am not worried every second that I am screwing them up.  I still worry, just not as frequently.  Our new family system will not ruin them, nor will it ruin me. 

I have been working hard on teaching them responsibility this summer.  The old me (the married me) was too busy trying to accommodate and please everyone and never really got around to teaching them how to do things.  Being a single mom makes responsibility a necessity.  I don't have the time nor energy to run every detail of their lives.  I have also learned from myself being in therapy that not making people be responsible for their lives or by trying to do too much, you create a person who doesn't believe they are capable and competent.  I definitely want and need my kids to feel capable and competent but I also need them to know they are loved and safe in our home.  It is a tricky balance at times.

But all that work leaves me in a happy place tonight, feeling more prepared than ever for the first day of school.  I know I am sending happy and whole children off to school tomorrow.  It is a wonderful realization.

Monday, November 19, 2012

I give.

I am giving up on this thankfulness series.  It was a good idea at the time but I am finding that some of the things I want to write about just sound shallow when put into a thankfulness perspective.  I think the love series I did a few years back fit much better with what I wanted to say.

So now I will catch you up on life around our house!

Ethan is smart.  You know I don't brag on my kids often but I will do it right now.  He is reading very well, at a 4th grade level but probably much higher.  His teacher can only test him up to the end of 3rd grade and he totally nailed that.  His test scores were high enough to get him into an enrichment program that will focus on reading.  I've never wanted my kids to be labeled as gifted; in fact, I've always said average is just fine with me.  But he has been bored in class and I think this program will be perfect for him.  He is still in his regular class but will just get pulled out a few times a week to do the enrichment program.  Proud of the little man.

Olivia is just herself!  :)  She is a delight.  She is in her third year of preschool (I keep calling her a super senior) and she is doing great!  Last year was rough for her and school was mainly about getting emotional support.  She actually unlearned things from her fall conference to her spring conference!  Not this year though.  She is making lots of friends and learning lots of things.  I am very glad she didn't go to Kindergarten this year--that probably would have been a disaster.

We are looking forward to having a few days off this week to just play!  Our weeks are usually very busy--two nights with their dad, DivorceCare for Kids and Awana.  That doesn't leave much time to do sports and activities at this point.  DivorceCare will be done in two more months.  Ethan has expressed interest in karate and Olivia desperately wants to take either dance or gymnastics.  I have asked my family not to get lots of toys for the kids this year for Christmas--we are literally overflowing with crap around here.  I would much rather have experiences--trips, outings, activities.  That way the only tangible things I have to store are photos!  :)

Here are a couple pics from the last few months.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Day 15: I am thankful for my son!

Today my sweet boy turns 8!  I can't believe he has been here that long.  I still remember the nervous excitement of staggering into the hospital, pausing for contractions and being sure they would send me home.  I soon found out I was already at a 6 so I settled in for the dreaminess of an epidural.  A few hours later I was holding my first child in my arms!

Ethan is such a wonderful boy.  He is curious, smart, funny and so empathetic.  He sometimes gets hurt by things and since I too have empathy (too much at times), we can relate to the feelings together.  He has told me several times that other boys just don't have the heart he does.

That they don't Ethan, that they don't!  It is part of what makes him such a special, uniquely awesome kid.

Ethan, I am delighted and blessed to have a son like you!  I pray that you will grow up to be a strong man with a great heart and a never ending pursuit of God's plan for your life.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Day 14: I am thankful for healing.

I was looking back at Day 1 and read the part about how I wanted to be in a coma for a while to make it through everything that was happening to me.  I can thankfully say that I no longer feel that way!  In fact, I don't think I have had that thought cross my mind in months.  Life is good.  I am healing, although I am not healed.  It might always be a work in progress.  Stuff still happens and knocks me down but I am able to get back up a lot quicker than I could at the beginning.

So I am thankful for healing and the ability to continue down a path of healing.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Day 13: I am thankful for helpful people

I am thankful for helpful people.  Specifically, helpful men that can help me with the household jobs that I have always relied on a husband for.  Tonight my friend reset my sprinklers to actually work, so the atrocity in my front yard might actually resolve itself soon.  He also changed a battery in a smoke detector for me. 

There have been a number of great men in my life that have helped me out in the last 7 months.  My dad, my brother, my brother-in-law, my neighbors, my friends' husbands....I am thankful for all of them!  I try to do as much as I can on my own, but let's be honest--sometimes you just need a man to help you out! 

Feminists everywhere are dying right now, I know.  :)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Day 12: I am thankful for time.

Yesterday the kids and I went to say our final goodbye to their last great grandpa.  He is 86 and has lived a full life and is ready to go.  The kids did great and I think I made the right choice in taking them.  He was peaceful and joyful.  He knows where he is going and is looking forward to seeing his wife that passed away 9 years ago.  I am so glad we had a chance to say goodbye to him while he was still able to talk to us.

I have never been around someone at the end of their life.  It was an extraordinary experience.  I was struck by the happiness that seemed to surround him.  He wasn't lying there full of sadness and regret--he was embracing the situation and preparing to move on.  We should all strive to live a life that enables us to embrace the end of our life like that. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Day 11: I am thankful for summer colds

Are you sensing my sarcasm?  Because I'm laying it on pretty thick....

Oh, the summer cold.  Somehow so much worse than a winter cold, not sure why.  I brazenly shared a drink with my sister last weekend even after she warned me she was sick.  I don't get sick!  At least not usually. 

But here I sit today with a runny nose, scratchy throat and lots of sneezing.  And moms, you know what happens when you sneeze after popping out a couple babies.  It ain't pretty.

I am holding out hope that it will improve quickly--I haven't actually gotten a real cold for quite some time.  I have these symptoms for a day or two and then feel better.  Hopefully this is just a pretend summer cold!

Well, there's always money in the banana stand.