Sunday, May 31, 2009

I Missed a Week

I can't believe I missed a week of blogging - it's been 9 days since I last posted and I really should be in bed now, making it 10 days instead. This is the first time since I began blogging in January that I have gone this long without had to happen sometime, I guess. I mean, sooner or later, we'll go on vacation and since I don't have a laptop, it's unlikely I'd post then, either.

But we weren't on vacation this week! I was getting ready for hosting the youth group Friday night. I killed myself this week, with my to-do lists and my baking and all the getting ready. The only things I didn't do to this house this week were to scrub the tub and shower! And Paul really knocked himself out, too. He had several late nights of getting stuff done - trimwork, weedeating, etc. I was grateful. Now, we almost have the house where we wanted it. I just need him to put in the new carpeting upstairs and to make a new entryway floor at the bottom of the steps where the front door opens. I know he has some other projects, too, he wants to work on.

The youth activity went very, very well. We had about 20 teens and 3 youth leaders. The weather was perfect, I had more than enough food, and the kids all seemed to really like it. Pastor Jeff is SO good with the kids and they had a ball doing activities after we ate. And I had a really nice visit with his wife, Courtney, so it was good for me, too.

That night David had a friend spend the night. It worked out so well because Isaac's sisters came up for the activity and he was able to ride the church van with them. Since David had a birthday Wednesday he requested to have a friend sleepover and then he wanted to go to the Science Center since we had not been there since they built the new one. I know why - it's expensive to get in! So we did that yesterday afternoon after a trip to Burger King. It's a nice place, although it didn't excite me nearly as much as it did the boys!

I woke up yesterday morning (Sat.) and I could tell something wasn't right. I had a very hard time waking and then in the shower there were black lines crisscrossing in front of my eyeballs. Once I got moving it became obvious to me that I had a major mini stroke (sounds funny, "major mini"!) in the night. I apparently overdid it this past week. Today I'm better but my whole left side is aching and sagging. I can't see right out of that left eye, either. It's discouraging. The last time I had any mini-stroke at all was in Nov. and that was pretty mild. The last time I had something of this magnitude it was April of '08 and that landed me in the ER. I didn't go in this time, but I may call my neurologist when I get a chance - not that he can do anything. But if I suddenly collapse from a major stroke then at least he'll know that I had a TIA in the days preceding...dark humor, I know! I just want to be all better and back to normal. I do so well for so long and then one of these happens and it just knocks me backwards in the healing process. The docs in IA City seemed to think it would only last for 2 years, but what if they're wrong? I might be dealing with this forever.

On to more cheerful subjects: as I mentioned, David had a birthday this week. He turned 10 on Wednesday. We got him a pocketknife for one of his presents. I knew he'd misplace it right away because that kid loses everything. But he's found it several times, too. It's currently, lost though. And that may not be a bad thing - he can't slice off a finger if he can't find his knife! He's such a good boy, though, and a real blessing to us. I always say that he brought the laughter back into our house after Ben's birth and the ensuing years of difficulty following that. Everything was so grim for awhile and then along came David and we haven't quit laughing since!

I had a couple of friends keeping their eyes peeled for a kiddie slide for Sam as they garage sale. I can tell them to forget it now. Sam mastered our swingset slide this weekend. It's oh, about 5 feet or so off the ground. But he clamors right up the rungs and pulls himself up on top and slides down, laughing all the way. After we watched him accidentally go down headfirst this afternoon, Paul got a large piece of 5" foam and put it underneath the bottom - just in case! One of Paul's projects this week was to get the deck repaired. This March he broke it when he took down a tree and mis-estimated where it would fall! He left the trunk mostly in place so that if the boys ever want to build a treehouse they can. It's right off the deck. Well, our enterprising boys figured out this week that if they move the trampoline over in front of the tree they can climb up the deck rail onto the tree trunk and then plummet to the trampoline. Some things I just really do not want to know! I hope Sam isn't watching them too closely.

Friday morning I took Will in to meet his football coach. Will is homeschooled, but plays ball for our local school (Pleasantville High). I came away impressed to the core by this man. He showed us around the weight room. Will will be lifting weights 3 mornings a week, starting next week. He emphasized to me the safety precautions they take both in there and on the field. I wasn't all that worried, anyway. My kids are God's and if they are destined to die a premature death, there's nothing I can do about it. I'm not going to restrict their lives on the off-chance that they might have a deadly accident - within reason, I guess I can say. I might have second thoughts if they desire to get into bungee jumping or extreme (dumb) sports. So, that's why Will is playing football - and yes, we have been criticized for allowing this! But anyway...What really impressed me was this: the coach told Will that his and the assistant coach's priorities go as follows: #1 - God, #2 - Family, #3 - School, #4 - Football. He told Will that if he has a church or family event that interferes with weightlifting or practice, to not even give it a thought. Those are more important. He also told Will that there is to be absolutely no swearing. He said he didn't think that would be a problem for Will (I'm sure because we're homeschoolers and most homeschoolers are religious nuts). That impressed me greatly! I asked Will later if his Junior high coach had had the same policy and he said no.

My big thing right now is vampires - yes, really! A week ago my girlfriend, Melissa, got me started on the Twilight series, a collection of books I had no intention of reading. Actually, I didn't know anything about them. I'd heard of the movie, but thought it was some teen flick and it didn't interest me. But, oh my goodness, these books are amazing! I'm pages away from being done with book #3 and these are thick - 5-600 page books! The subjects are teenagers and obviously they have a teen appeal. But, I'm loving them. And Melissa is older than me, so I don't feel too bad! They're not Christian books and they probably are not enriching my life in any way. But as a snack, they're not bad. I can't find anything objectionable in the books. There are no Satanic themes. The vampires are good vampires, as are the werewolves (yes, they're in there, too!) There are actually some very commendable themes woven throughout the books - loyalty, protectiveness in true love relationships, and even morality. In the part I just read the main character, Bella, is eager to have a sexual relationship with her boyfriend, the vampire. And he tells her not until they are married because he wants to do things "right." Teen girls are devouring these books (as are middle aged mothers like me!) and they need to hear this message.

I have to put myself to bed now. Tonight we met with Ben's camp counselor and his family at Dairy Queen so we could kind of go over things with him concerning Ben's needs. And then some other friends walked in so we ended up staying quite late. Tomorrow both Ben and I have appointments as this new place where the emphasis is on preventative health care and using natural strategies to combat health problems. The first visit is free and if we do decide to go back they do take our insurance, so there's nothing to lose but time by going. Then we'll do our shopping. I need to pick up a new clippers. I'll have to remember that. I was shaving David's head Thursday night and my 10 + year old clippers died on his head! I tried to cut the rest down with scissors but he looks a bit scalped - I need to even that out. Poor kid. He was not happy! Memories!

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