Category Archives: random thoughts

Between Seasons

*Just a reminder, or if you are new to my blog, I use my daughter’s middle names when talking about them here.

 

July 10.  We have been done with school for less than a month, but at the same time, summer is speeding by.

The girls did beyond amazing on their standardized testing at the end of our school year.  Both Sue and Caitlyn scored significantly above grade level.  Math is still an area of struggle, but just for fun, we are resuming our math studies as of today.  Sue is thrilled (or not).

My running is back.  After weeks of worrying about recovering from my injury in May, I ran 10 miles without stopping on July 4!!!

Caitlyn and Sue started Cross Country yesterday (yay!!).  This makes mama very happy.  I love seeing them get active, it is the one sport I can relate to, and I love the family that runs the program.

Our family has made some new friends that we are spending time with a time or two each week.  Friendship is not always easy for me, but God is reminding me if I open my heart, I just might be very happy with a new friend.

Hubby is growing a wonderful garden again this year.  He has expanded it again so we can share the extra with others.  Why not do something you enjoy and bless others at the same time?

The girls have been reading like crazy this summer.  That is actually what they are doing right now.  They have filled up one booklet of 50 squares (20 minutes of reading or a reading activity is one square) and are working on their second.

Patrice tried her hand at some skateboarding.  She was very safe about it.

Sue got to wash the car last night with daddy and today is just a lazy day as it is predicted to rain all.day.long!!

But maybe, just maybe, there will be a chance for us to do some tie dye later in the week (Patrice is sporting last year’s project)…

Words, Words, Words

I have a lot of words. You know it, we all know it–I have a lot of words.  I say a lot of words, I read a lot of words.

Last week the girls were reading something and it included the word dolt.  They were stuck.  I piped up and said, “oh that is an old word used to mean someone is an idiot or not very smart.”  They were impressed, so I thought, “hey–I should use this as a teachable moment.  “Girls, how do you think you go about learning all those words?”  They chimed, “You Mommy, we go to you to learn new words.”  Not what I was going for.  Yes, they learn a lot of words from me–some good, some bad, but the teacher in me was trying to get them to say, “by reading.  We learn words by reading.

Unfortunately, no matter how much we read or how many words we know, sometimes our words will fall short.

I feel things very, very deeply.  If you are someone I admire or that I feel a connection with, I feel it very deeply.  I don’t give those feelings easily or lightly and I want those people to know how much they mean or how valuable they are.

And words fail me.

I try to send little gifts or random texts to let them know they are being thought of, that they are important, and that they are valued.

Problem is, I don’t think that message always gets across; I think I end up coming across as desperate or needy and the thing is, I’m not.  Yes, I have those times, for the most part, I am ok.  I just want the people in my life to know they are valued in my eyes and more importantly, valued in the eyes of God.

We all need to know that.

The Complexity of Loss and Families

I grew up about 5 hours from where I now live.  This sometimes makes trips to see family difficult.  It seems like it should be so simple, but it’s not.  Yes, it is close enough to do the drive up in less than a day, but also far enough away to take a good chunk of a week in order to make the travel time worth it.  Now that I write that, it sounds kind of stupid, I should probably stop being so selfish and just make the trip…but I don’t.  There are always commitments or appointments.  There is always something.

That whole thought process is complicated enough.  It gets even more complicated when I have biological family members I have not seen in over a decade, that my children, and possibly hubby, have never met.  How do I explain to my family that we need to drop everything and make a trip up north to see other family members they didn’t even know existed?

In the past, I have just shoved down my thoughts and feelings and didn’t make the trip…yet again.  And felt guilt and confusion over the entire situation.

All of this came back up this week.  A great aunt of mine passed away on Tuesday.  She is on my biological fathers’ side, so again, we haven’t had much interaction with her in a long time.

But at one time, she and I were pretty close.  My mom, step-dad and I went to church with her and her family for several years (kind of odd I know, but we lived in a small town).  I have many fond memories of her from those years.  She was very loving and sweet to myself, and so many.

Yet, while I have thought of her many times over the years, I have not spoken of her much, so again, how do I explain to my hubby and girls that I need to make a five-hour trip to go to a funeral of someone they have never known?

Once again, I will package all these thoughts and put them mentally on the shelf, never saying a word about wanting to go to her funeral.  And wonder again how life gets so complicated and how to balance it properly.

Sigh.

 

Am I a Hypocrite?

Am I a hypocrite?  As a human, yes, I am sure I am.  But right now I have two specific situations rolling around in my brain.

Let’s start with the most recent issue.  As we all know, the Presidential election is heated this year.  It seems the default assumption is, if you are not with someone, you are against them.  The thing is, that just isn’t true.  There are so many sides to each candidate.  For some, the answer of who to support is cut and dried, but for many, it just isn’t that way this year.  Like I mentioned Friday, I don’t know what I am doing with my Presidential vote on Tuesday.  I know who I am NOT voting for, but I don’t know if I will be voting for any of the other options.  I just don’t.

So for those assuming, you know how I will  vote based on other parts of my life, you just don’t.  I don’t.

And yet, the other day someone posted that Evangelical Christians are showing themselves to be the hypocrites she has always known them to be.

Wait, wait, wait.  I strongly identify as an Evangelical Christian, but neither she nor I know how I am voting, so in this area, I am not showing myself to be a hypocrite, thus negating her post.

I thought about responding to her post, but I am well aware she has made up her mind, so engaging her would not change her mind, nor mine.

Sigh.

The other situation on my mind might reveal me as a hypocrite.

Our girls have a HORRIBLE time keeping their rooms clean.  We are after them ALLLLLL the time to pick up all the clothes and stuff in their room.  That has always made me feel like a hypocrite.  You see, my room is a disaster.  Always.  It just seems after hours of homeschooling and trying to keep the living spaces of our home tamed, I just have nothing left when it comes to my room.  By the time I get there, I clear enough space to climb into bed and just be done moving.

Here I am yelling at my girls, and we all know my room is a nightmare.

And that eats at me.  Really.  I tell the girls, when they ask about my room, that I have to spend all my time on the rest of the house, but the guilt bugs me.  Maybe I am putting too much thought into it, but it makes me feel like such a fake.

Well, today, I finally got up there…and shockingly, what I thought would take me days, shaped up pretty quickly.  I have cleaned up my floor, sorted out papers just laying on my hope chest, and have it so you can move around.  I just have the top of my dresser and my nightstand to clean up.  It’s not ready for a catalog shoot or anything, but I can be satisfied with it.  And that’s enough for now.

Are there any areas in parenting  or adulting that have you feeling like a hypocrite?  Do you just ignore it or do you set out to clean it up?

Will the Words Come

My mom married young and had me young.  She and my biological dad split when I was 4.  She then met my dad who raised me, right away.  He was a good daddy.  He taught me to tie my shoes, he braided my hair, he painstakingly taught me how to ride a two-wheeled bike.  He could be very harsh and hard to understand, but all in all, he loved me.

I wish I could say the same of my bio dad.  My mom lied to me for many years, taking all the blame for their break up and his lack of involvement in my life.  And I believed her until I got married.

When he declared he couldn’t come up for my wedding, even when my soon to be hubby offered to buy his plane ticket.  He didn’t want to come…to his only child’s wedding.  Did you catch that?  Only.

That’s when it dawned on me that my mom had been lying to me my entire life…she said it was her fault he wasn’t in my life, but it wasn’t.  He could have chosen to be involved, to be a dad, but instead he chose to live several states away, never writing or calling.

He’s never made any effort to see any of my three beautiful girls.  He’s never called to thank  me for sending pictures or ask how they are.  They are his only grandchildren, and they know nothing of him.

And you know what I realized slowly, over the years, he doesn’t love me.  And it is nothing I have done or haven’t done, it just is.  He doesn’t love me.  He has always loved his pets fiercely so maybe if I had four legs, I would be worthy of his love, but as a biped, I am worthy of nothing.  Absolutely, none of his love.

I could tell you it’s okay.  I could tell you I have love from many other people, and I do, but that doesn’t make up for it.

I watch how my hubby loves his daughters, fiercely, daily, constantly.  It is beautiful and I am so glad they have that–so glad.  But sometimes it just serves to remind me what I don’t have from the man who is supposed to be my dad.  It’s gone, maybe it was never there, but it sure won’t be returning.

It doesn’t matter how old you are, it stinks to realize you biological father doesn’t love you.

A Little Conflicted

I love my kids like crazy.  I love being a stay-at-home mom.  I love being a homeschooling mom.

But sometimes, I need a break.

Summers are actually the hardest time of the year to get them.  During the school year, hubby takes them to Bible Club and Pioneer Girls twice a week.  During the summer, these programs take a hiatus.  And so does my break time.

This leaves  my walking time as my time.  But, many nights one or another kid joins me.  I love having them get exercise and the conversation time we have.

But I really miss being alone to think my own thoughts..  It leaves any vestige of myself out of the equation and leaves me feeling very boring and flat.

How do you parents balance that in the summer?  How do you keep some of the me?

P17

 

Funerals And Such

I think we are creeping closer and closer to being a pet owning family again..  Hubby and I each had dogs when we got married, but old age and illness took them from us a few years back.  And while Hubby and I loved our dogs, we have also loved the freedom of no pets to consider when planning camping trips, have loved not cleaning up dog poop in the yard, and the lack of hair in the house.

But I think those days are coming to an end.

Caitlyn, and often Sue, have been begging for a dog for months.  We have put them off during that time by telling them they have to learn to keep their room clean before we consider adding a dog.

Well, guess what…there room is not always clean, but they are doing much better..and they have stopped fighting me over cleaning their room when I mention in needs to be done.

Today they cleaned it all on their to hold a funeral…for Caitlyn’s firefly that passed away at the hand, er foot, of someone in our household.  They have cleaned their room and are making invitations to the service.

Yeah, the whole thing is weird, but I am thinking it is time for a pet with a little more staying power than a firefly.  And we are not cat people.  Or hamster people.  And fish just don’t last.  That leaves us with…a dog.

And now for more parameters.

I am not a big dog person.  I consider black labs big.  I grew up with, and had, a dachshund.  They are cute and small, but can be picky about children.  But that is the kind of dog hubby is thinking he would like for our next pet go-around.

I would like something that doesn’t really shed.  My cousin has this amazing golden labradoodle that is small, affectionate, patient with kids, and doesn’t shed.

So much to consider—like that whole cleaning up poop in the yard…yuck…but I think the day of reckoning is coming quickly…and honestly it is more fun to consider than our current presidential race, so I guess I will continue to think upon these things…

A Compliment

Except for this for my Sue when she learned how to read a challenging book,2014-06-02 09.22.41 2014-06-02 09.26.16 2014-06-01 14.13.35 2014-05-31 22.22.22I have never colored my hair.  I’ve always been proud of it’s color and was afraid if I dyed it, what I had when the color grew out would not be what I have now.

I was born with red hair, but after that was a blondie.  And have always considered myself a natural blonde.  There are times my hair looks pretty brown, but if I dry it with a hair dryer or let it dry naturally before I pull it back, it is primarily blonde.

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I was once at a hairdresser getting a cut and a lady walked by me, pointed at my head and said, “I want her color.”  My hairdresser told me a lot of people come looking for what I sport naturally.

That has stuck with me.  Obviously.

And it got me thinking about our words.  That whole conversation took place over 15 years ago.  And I still think of it.  That one compliment still impacts me.  15 years.

What will my girls think of my works in 15 years?  Caitlyn will be almost 25, Sue almost 24, and Patrice almost 21.  What will stick with them?  Which of my words will matter to them?

On the Look Out

There is a golf driving range and miniature golf course on my walking route.  I love walking by it.  It is a nice change of scenery.  Well, during the summer that is.  During the winter it is a pretty drab area of nothing.

Tonight is a very mild night, about 70 degrees and breezy.  There were lots of people out golfing.  And as I always do, I looked through the golfers noting the families, especially the ones with older kids.

Those make me happy, they give me hope.

You see, since Caitlyn was just 8 weeks old, I have been dreading the day they will get older, grow up, and leave me.  I like them close, I like them with me.  I like life the way it is now.  But I know it will change.

I picture this change starting in the tween and teen stage with the girls not wanting to be around us…and only growing until we haven’t seen them in months.

But those people miniature golfing, they, give me hope.  They give me hope we can weather the years together, as a family.  Growing and learning together.

 

Random Ramblings

I am enjoying my Valentine’s Day Diet Coke tonight

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Caitlyn was uber creative with her Valentine message to all of us.  Each post-it note says one thing she loves about us.

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Daddy had fun with tying Sues’ dress sash

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Sue found a great icicle

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And Patrice looks crazy cute practicing her first French lesson–what is it about kids in headsets??

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