Saturday, August 27, 2011

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year...

That's Ben with his grandma at the State Fair last week. He had a dr's appt. this week. They measured him and his height is up to 5'8" now. That's a full two inches taller than I am. All these boys are going to end up towering over me. Even last night at Will's football game I noticed that he is as tall as or taller than the majority of his teammates - which is to be expected, I guess, now that he's a junior.

I am in the throes of allergy suffering now. I'm going to try not to complain too much about it because it happens every August and it will go away sometime in Oct. I'm used to this. But right now I'm not sleeping well, my body hurts, my eyes feel like they have sand in them, I sneeze all the time and I'm drifting through my days in a drug-induced haze. Bear that in mind as you read anything I write in the next few weeks - no doubt, it will be colored by my physical laments. If it's just strange, then that's the drugs talking!

Ben got back to school on Tuesday. He was so happy to be there, his aide told me. I'm not surprised! I did start homeschooling the other two this week. I think they got a couple days in. I'm trying to work more with Sam this year since he'll be 4 in a couple of months. He wants to do certain things, like recite his letters, because he knows them. But he is resisting doing anything with numbers or learning to write his letters. I'm not too worried about it. I'd rather he spend most of his time doing hands-on learning, anyway - namely, playing. Someone from church gave us a bike for him a few weeks ago with training wheels. At first Sam was really intimidated by it but his dad and David have worked with him on it and he's gotten to the point where he can ride around our driveway. But he can't figure out braking and so he runs into the back stoop to stop! I offered to teach him how to use the brakes but he told me he'd rather just run into that thing instead. Ok! So if he wants to spend most of his day doing things like that, I'm good with it.

We got some sobering news at the end of this week. A mom in our congregation - just three years older than me - has been diagnosed with brain cancer. She's had terrible headaches all summer, I knew, but I assumed it was just migraines, with which I am too familiar. Nobody knows yet what the dr's are predicting for an outcome, but it sure doesn't sound very good right now. We know this family quite well. We're not really friends with them, but my heart just aches for them. They've got 4 kids, all pre-teens and teenagers. I can easily put myself in her shoes and I know it's not the possibility of dying young that would bother me. It's leaving my kids without a mom that would be upsetting. But yet, I have to wonder - is that arrogance? Shouldn't I trust that if God were to call me home at a younger age, He would also take good care of my children? But still, you can't deny that losing a parent in childhood has got to have a profound effect on one's life. Pray for the Brace family.

I'm supposed to write a cheerful, encouraging devotional for a blog this weekend, but now this news is on my heart. Between that and physically feeling crummy, I'm not quite sure how I'm going to do that. I found out that FaithWriters has a daily devotional blog. Different members contribute every day. Kristi told me about it. Her posts come out on the 20th of every month. She told me last week that they have an opening, so I contacted the moderator, and now I'm in! Now I just have to come up with something people want to read. When my first post goes up I'll be sure to let you all know so you can see it.

Will's first football game of the season was last night. Like last year, he's playing both JV and Varsity, which means two games a week, every Monday and Friday. I think that's going to kill us, financially! I spent $14 just getting in last night. And a lot of these games are an hour away or so, which is extra gas expense. The team is not very big this year, so much so that this is the last year of their 1-A rating. Next year they go to just "A." I didn't know there was anything smaller than a 1-A! Will did get quite a bit of playing time last night. He's not a real aggressive player, which I think probably has a lot to do with his personality in general. He's so laid-back and gentle that he has difficulty, I think, turning into a mean football machine out on the field. But several times I did see him him plow into an opponent and I'd get all excited and cheer. And then, at one point, I saw one of the other guys try to take him down and I found myself feeling all offended. Silly mommy! You can't take the "mom" part out of "football mom," I guess!

The boys lost night. I knew it was going to be a rough night when the opponent scored a touch-down in the first 30 seconds of the game! Of course, they were playing Carlisle, which isn't even a 1-A school. They just do this first game for fun, although I think it does count. It's called the "Highway 5 Rivalry Game" since both schools are located within 15 minutes of eachother and both are located just off Highway 5.

I had been chatting with one woman next to me on the bleachers during the game. She works in the high school as an associate for a student with Downs Syndrome. That girl, incidentally, is one of the cheerleaders - I love watching her! Well, she knows I'm Ben's mom and that I homeschool the other boys so we were talking. In the course of our conversation I discovered that she is a Christian, which was neat to find out! Then, she leaned towards me and said, "I could never let my son out on the field to play. I don't know how these mothers do it!" I just smiled and said something about trusting the Lord to protect them. Then a look of horror crossed her face and she said, "Oh no! Does your son play?!" I told her he did and which number he is. She exclaimed, "I never would have said that if I had known!" I just laughed because I truly was not offended. I honestly don't worry about Will getting injured on the field. It could happen, obviously, but a lot of things could happen that never do.

I was lucky, later, that I didn't offend this same woman! The dance team came out and performed a couple of numbers. I was bothered by this because I felt that the moves were awfully sexual in nature, just the ways the girls were moving their bodies. Maybe I'm a fuddy duddy or hyper-sensitive because I have boys, but it bugged me. The lady beside me leaned in closer to say something and I honestly expected her to say something along those same lines, since I knew she was now a Christian. Instead, she pointed out her daughter to me who was on the field performing on the team! Ai-yi-yi! I'm glad I let her talk and didn't open my mouth too quickly!

Paul is at the men's retreat this weekend. I had decided long ago that I would not be going this year to the ladies' retreat because I was spending money on my Michigan trip and it would be better to stagger the expense of those two trips (our church retreats cost $45, which is a chunk of change when you're counting every penny). So, a few weeks ago Paul asked me if I was going to the Ladies' Retreat and I told him I wasn't. Feeling virtuous, I opened my mouth to tell him why I wasn't going. But before I could speak he said, "Good! Then I'll go to Men's retreat!" Well, so much for saving money! This year they were offering target shooting and he was particularly excited about that. He even had to call me last night to tell me how good he had done! He'll be home sometime tonight.

Well, off to sniffle some more while I run through my to-do list...

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