Update

So much for a daily post, huh?

What have we been up to? After Noah’s illness, Jordyn got sick.

Then, just when she finally recovered, I got sick. I will spare you the visual.

I spent the rest of that week making Halloween costumes.

After that, my dad came into town for a visit and he enabled all of my sisters (and their families) to gather in the same place.

We went to the zoo and swam in the hotel’s pool.

 

And now we get back to normal.

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Packing

Despite our winter warnings, we have been packing like crazy, but with a focus on organization. It was while I was confronted with a hallway full of assorted bed linens and towels that I got a little creative. I had read somewhere to store the matching sheets (and extra pillowcases) in the pillowcase for the set. That way, everything is ready to go and you can just grab the sheet set you want. Really good idea, by the way, wish I knew who said it so that I could credit them. However, like most families, I have more than one bed size, which I realized when I was looking for twin-sized sheets for my kids’ beds for my sister’s visit. I grabbed a pink (yeah, this must be Jordyn’s) queen sized sheet. Needless to say, it didn’t fit the twin bed and was tossed aside. It won’t fit my king sized bed either, but it might fit on our futon. My idea was to label these pillowcase-packages so that, at a glance, I could tell where each set belonged.

Voila.

T for Twin, K for King, and Q for Queen (if I can ever complete the set!). I just took a little scrap of flannel (because it doesn’t fray easily), pinked the edges with my scissors, and wrote on it with a permanent marker. Affix with a safety pin and you are ready to go.

Dear Friend,

I did something crazy today, Friend. It started innocently enough. I remembered that last night I felt good because of the busyness of the day and for accomplishing a few tasks. Today, I told myself, I would slowly ease into cleaning what is supposed to be the master bedroom and is instead the “collector of all things, to include (but not limited to): clothes, dirty and clean, piles of books, movies, trash, all household paperwork, sewing projects, fabric for sewing projects, cute pattern that I couldn’t pass up, pens, pencils, candy, candy wrappers, balls of yarn, balls of embroidery thread, and the unavoidable dust bunnies.” Oh yeah, and there is a king size bed in this room too!

I began today, Friend. I started slowly by picking up the gigantic gray bucket that I knew was serving as a temporary storage facility for all sorts of randomness, but I also knew that the bottom of the bucket contained fabric! Yes, fabric, but since it doesn’t belong to me, it’s easy to process- toss into the garage…while still in the container! It was as I moved the mammoth gray bucket onto my bed to spill its contents that I noticed how much extra floor space I had. There were two other similarly filled boxes right next to my laundry basket, which, after I moved them on top of my bed, I realized that I could in fact, reach the windows to open them. The beautiful sun was shining down during this late morning time and I chanced it by opening the windows.

Once the boxes were on the bed, Friend, I realized that I couldn’t simply stop. There were a few books that had been placed directly below the shelf that they belong in, so I sorted that out. It was then that the overwhelming need to reorganize came over me. I realized that it wasn’t enough that I just straighten my room, there was a flaw in the layout of the furniture that allowed for too many flat surfaces, but all of them in the wrong spots to as to severely diminish the function of the room as a restful haven and rather increase its function as the storage facility for every hopeless thing in the house. I could hear the sighs of the neglected bedside table and the dresser was groaning louder than the rest under the load it was required to bear.

Friend, I set it all to right. Today, with little outside intervention, I managed to completely rearrange AND clean my entire bedroom. I am so proud of myself, it took me nearly 12 hours, but it was worth it to hear my mom’s positive comments and my husband’s surprised look. I am practically delirious at this moment, but I am thrilled with the (still slightly incomplete) results.

And, I know that I get to rest tomorrow, did I tell you, Friend? My husband and I are going out on a date and we are staying out all night! An advance thank you to my mother and sister who will be caring for my treasures while we are away. I hope to post pictures later!

Good Day

I had a good day today. I didn’t get everything on my list done, I didn’t stick to my schedule and I didn’t eat nutritiously for most of the day. But, it was still a good day.

My wonderful husband let me sleep in, which I did. I got up and drank 2 cups of pretend coffee (that’s instant coffee mixed in with hot chocolate mix) and had a granola bar for breakfast. I remembered to take my vitamins. When Jordyn came downstairs to ask if she could watch another movie, I had her come downstairs and do her phonics lesson first. She flew through it. I managed to get at least 3 loads of laundry done, and almost all of them put away. I chatted on the phone to my sister about interesting things like bones not working and something about Cleveland. I was trying to do laundry and search for apartments while talking to her. Sip, I made a third cup of fake coffee. Deposited check for Eric without a complaint and I did it promptly. Made a healthy dinner for me and the kids after my workout was cut short by those same kiddos.

I read this cute book today.

It is a collection of rhymes like “The Wheels on the Bus” and “1, 2, Buckle My Shoe” that preschoolers everywhere know the motions to, but if you can’t think of something, the author has provided an activity for nearly every rhyme. The pictures are great because they look like fabric that has been pieced together. Super cute, highly recommend!!!

The day was good because I was active, thoughtful and careful. I have some people in my life who look to find fault, and I know that I was faulty often enough today, but no one needs to know when they are being inconstant or erring (unless there is a habit that needs to be addressed and is done willingly and privately). I am proud of myself today, for many of the little things that I did. Hoping that tomorrow, I can do even more things the way they should be done.

Guilt Tripping

Its the age-old debate in my house all over again.

It all started with my sister talking about a school in Kentucky that she wanted to attend. My mom jumped on that bandwagon and decided that she would also like to be a sonographer when she grows up. That sparked the entire conversation about education and income, jobs and the future.

Somewhere along the way I got swept up and now am in the middle of planning my return to college and sending my children off the public school system and any potential children into the day care system. I am looking at studying to be a teacher which is a noble, even child-friendly career for women. My family needs the money because we have handled our money so poorly in the past that we have gotten into an incredibly bad position.

My issue is that I really like the idea of going back to school and putting my children into school. I like knowing that I can help out the family financially and still be present when necessary. As a teacher, my hours are going to be quite convenient as a mother except that I wouldn’t be able to homeschool my children. So, the guilt that I am feeling is that I thought that I NEED to be a stay-at-home, homeschooling mother in order to fulfill the Biblical definition of “keeper at home,” after all, how can you keep something if you’re not there.

I am terrified of making the wrong decision, of becoming an independent feminist, of loving money more than my children, of ruining the lives of my children. I am struggling with this issue SO MUCH!!! I hear that God gives you peace when you are on the right track, but apparently, I can deceive myself because I have felt peace about things that have turned out to be a clear error in judgement.

Am I making a mountain out of a molehill, here? Is working outside the home the worst thing ever? Are my kids going to be Christians if they go to a public school? Will they succeed academically? Moreover, what about the children my husband and I have been praying over? Am I going to have more children, only to place them in someone else’s care so that I can attend school and eventually teach all day long?

I feel like my very right to call myself a conservative Christian woman is up for debate.

Clothing Choices

Have you ever been one of those people who had different “wardrobes?” Meaning, you had church clothes, play clothes, school clothes, painting clothes, etc.? I didn’t, at least to my knowledge. However, now that the church I am attending is a little more formal, I have begun to think that having a few “church clothes” that don’t get dirtied at the park would be a welcome relief from the frantic searching on Sunday morning for something clean to wear. It is very likely that this is a problem of laundry management and less of wardrobe, but the question still remains. My son wears a shirt, tie, and pants to church that he would never wear to the park. My daughter, however, has no dress to wear to church. I think it is worth it to find something nicer for her to wear that signals to her little brain that it is Sunday and it that means a special time to worship God and learn from his Word.

Which brings up an interesting point, clothing has always had a significant impact on the way we behave. Businesses have long required their associates to dress according to a set of standards, even when they won’t be coming in direct contact with customers. Why? Because when you are dressed nicely, you act nicely. So, what about school clothes? I am wondering if it is worth the effort to make a specific “school uniform” for Jordyn. It doesn’t even really have to look like a uniform, I don’t think, just so she knows that when she wears them, it is a school day. I think it might just help trigger my brain as well. Perhaps we do something simple, black or blue skirt, white shirt. Easily made or purchased. Wonder if it would help focus my energy…