Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Prom, Easter, and Special Athletes

We've had a busy couple of weeks - what else is new? Hah! Here is Will at left, all dressed up for Prom Alternative. This year the kids stayed in town, eating at Johnny's Italian Steakhouse, staying at the Stoney Creek Inn (where we attended the marriage retreat in Feb) and then going to SkyZone on Sat. SkyZone is this place that has giant trampolines all over and the kids can play dodge ball and basketball and other things. It brings just two words to mind for me - urinary incontinence!

Friday night while Will was gone we went to Pizza Hut in Knoxville. Our waitress asked me if we were from Pleasantville. I told her no. Then she pointed at Ben and said, "I know him - he goes to my school!" So I explained to her that we were actually from Swan, but yes, Ben did attend Pville. She told me her name and that she was a junior and I told her that my older son was also a junior and was homeschooled, but attended one class there. She nodded and said, "Oh, you mean Will?" She added, "I've never met him, but I've heard about him!" I thought that was pretty impressive - that Will is well-known enough to be talked about! I mentioned that to Will later and he said that usually kids nod at him and he then hears them saying, "That's the homeschooled kid that plays football!"

Saturday we had an Easter party here in Swan. I was not involved in the planning at all, but I did help set things up on Friday. Sam was mystified when I mentioned that we would be "hunting eggs." He asked, "Why are we going to shoot eggs?" Oh, I laughed and laughed at that one! Saturday dawned gray, drizzly, and cold - ugh! I had agreed to man the "pin the tail on the bunny" game and I also ended up laying out a good portion of the 850 plastic eggs on the lawn. Despite the weather we had a good turn-out for our first party. The kids all had a great time.

But you know what? I found myself a little bothered by the whole party. Easter is such a sacred time of year and it almost seems wrong to me to be celebrating with Easter bunnies and candy. I used to think it was no different than Christmas - you have the sacred side and the secular side and as a Christian parent, you just make sure you teach your kids the sacred meaning. But I don't know - this just really kind of bothered me. Christianity pivots on the resurrection of Christ and yet, for most people, Easter is only about bunnies and eggs. I still did Easter baskets for the boys and we had eggs for David and Sam (this was the first year that Will and Ben both refused to hunt). I don't think we'll ever quit that, but I've just never found myself uneasy about it before. Kind of like Halloween last year... I know we're teaching the boys right. By Easter this year Sam was telling us that "Jesus died on the cross so we can go to Heaven." I did find it interesting when chatting with my friend, Tina, who lives in Korea (she is American) to discover that in Korea, they do not celebrate Easter like we do. Only Christians celebrate the holiday and there is no Easter bunny or egg hunts. It makes me wonder if only the western world is the only place where Easter is commercialized. Or maybe it's just the United States? I have no idea.

Well, I need to wrap up this post so that I can get supper going. I have Patch club tonight so I don't have a whole lot of time. So I'll have to write about my other stuff later. Yesterday was the Spring events for Special Olympics over at Simpson college. It was a chilly day, but the sun was out. I was shocked to discover when I got home, that I had fried my nose, though. Paul is calling me "Rudolph" as a result. The day was wonderful. I LOVE Special Olympics! This year I didn't feel so lost, though, and knew what was going on. Ben competed in three events - the 100 m dash, the softball throw, and a unified relay race. He got third place ribbons in the first two events. The unified race was one that Will got to run in (hence, the name - unified with "normal" people). It was so awesome because Grandview Baptist School had a group of kids there helping out. Two are from our church. So they stood on the side and cheered Ben's team on. Anyway, they won first place! I just love Sp. Olympics - all these athletes who are made perfectly, just the way God intended them to be.

One thing that is neat is that one of the team members attends Special Camp up at IRBC every summer. Well, when the coach found this out last year, and that Will works up there that week every year, she started looking into Sp. Camp, and she's sending her daughter (a sweet, shy teenager with Downs Syndrome) this June. The dad of the other girl told us that he spent a number of his teenage summers working up at camp, just like Will. He told Will to make sure to "check out the girls" which made Will's face turn red!

Since Ben's team got first they will be going up to Ames to compete in the state meet. His coach told me this will probably be on May 19 - ugh. We had intended to attend the NICHE graduation that day, plus I think we have 4 open houses to go to that afternoon and evening. How am I supposed to do all that? Plus, we have to go up to Ames on the 17th for Ben's bocce ball. competition. Then a week later we are going camping and David's birthday falls that same weekend so I have to not only get ready for camping, but I have to bring all his birthday celebration supplies with us, including the traditional "13" box (a box of 13 small gifts). Then a week later he's having a birthday party. And then a week later is VBS and the homeschool conference and Will's ACT test! One day at a time, one day at a time...

We may be going to Drake on May 3rd, as well. Ben's coach is hoping to get together another unified team to compete there. Apparently it's a day full of unified events. That would be fun.

Ok, I have to take a break from this madness to prepare supper. Hungry people get grouchy. Hopefully I can get all caught up tomorrow. I'm having a tooth pulled first thing in the morning (the first step in my crown process). I'm hoping I'll feel well enough to put in some time at City Hall and finish blogging, as well. I really need two of me. Maybe three.

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