Sunday, September 28, 2014

Day 482


Sept. 28, 2014

Day 482


Another Sun. night in paradise...the girls are supposed to be cleaning their room but the noises I am hearing coming from upstairs do not sound promising.  I was up there earlier today looking for Ellie's sandals, which I never did find.  But what I found under their bed was mounds and mounds of stuff - apparently they've been stashing it when they've been ordered to clean.  So it all got pulled out and now they have to clean it up.  This may take a few days, at the rate they are going.


Ellie gave me a scare tonight.  I was waiting around after church because David had a meeting for all the workers for the fall festival.  I was keeping a pretty close eye on Ellie, but all it took was one moment of me not hanging onto her arm and she was out the door.  I do not let her play outside because our church is located on a highway and I cannot trust her to not run into traffic.  I finally caught up with her on the other side of the church property - boy, was I mad!  She started bawling as soon as she saw me coming because she knew she was in big trouble!


I am toying with the idea of putting Lizzie in school next year.  I wasn't planning to write about this yet.  I guess my frustrations with the girls and their bedroom and Ellie at church brought it up in my mind.  Someone suggested the idea to me a couple of weeks ago and I had honestly never thought about it until then.  But I started mulling over the idea in my mind and honestly, it's really appealing right now!  I have grown to love Lizzie, of course, but she is a difficult child to live with.  I'm sure there are a number of factors at play that make it this way, but those are the facts.  She is hard.  She is hard to  live with, to discipline, and to enjoy.  She's actually not difficult to homeschool because she is an eager learner and very, very bright. 


I don't know what I'm going to do yet.  I've got a number of months to pray about this and seek counsel.  Already, I've brought it up with a number of different people, seeking their opinions.  Not one has said, "No, you can't do that!"  I'm fairly certain Paul would not be in favor of the idea, but I'm not living the rest of my life based on what he would or would not do.  He's dead.  I'm not.  I'm just wondering if having a break during the daytime hours would benefit us both.  But then, I have concerns, like:


* Lizzie already seems to be much more aware of worldliness (just feminine intuition?  Her early, rough years and exposure to things she should never have seen?).  She's going to be exposed to a whole lot more in a public school setting and might she choose to embrace it instead of the Christian principles I am attempting to instill in her heart?


*How can I win her heart if she's gone all day?


*Will she suffer academically? What about Common Core?


*Will she experience racism attending a nearly all-white school? I doubt this would happen, but as long as I'm coming up with a list of stuff to worry about, I may as well throw it on there.


* Will the distance that I perceive between us increase?


*What if I have a difficult time with her teacher?


* Am I simply experiencing a burnt-out time in homeschooling that will pass if I give it time?  Or, maybe the Lord is leading me away from  homeschooling altogether...




I don't know.  What I do know is that when it was time to send Ben back to public school I felt a perfect peace about the situation, even though I was scared to death.  Paul was actually very in favor of it, too, as I recall.  So maybe he wouldn't be as opposed to this as I think he might be.  With Ben, I was just completely drained, emotionally.  Puberty was a nightmare with him and I am beginning to feel now with Lizzie how I remember feeling with Ben.  I am asking the Lord for that perfect peace, though, that I experienced when I knew that I knew that I knew he had to go back.


So, we'll see.  There have been several times in recent weeks that Lizzie has been her normal, trying self and I have thought, "Oh, you are SO going to school next year!"  I'm not saying anything, though.  The last thing I want her to feel is rejected or that school is a punishment for her bad behavior.  I know that as awful as she is, she is equally frustrated by her seeming inability to make good choices.  She frequently comments about how she is "the worst kid in this family!"  We have had many, many talks about how it is all up to her and all she has to do is make wise choices instead of foolish ones, but the bad behavior still persists.  There is always counseling but I have had two bad experiences with counselors already and I am reluctant to try another.


All right...I'm going to go put my feminine miscreants to bed and then I'll get back to this.  Ben was no picnic tonight either, so I'm not just picking on the girls, either.





Ben went to Iowa City again Wed.  This time they did actual dental work on him.  It was an experiment because we didn't know how he'd do with needles and novacaine and drilling.  I knew full well they might throw up their hands and tell me Ben would have to be sedated for the work.  He was a champ - no problems whatsoever.  That tells me he could have been treated at our office in Pville instead of having to make these time-consuming treks out east.  And these are medical students working with him in Iowa City, not seasoned dentists.  And an actual dentist with a degree in Pville told me there was no way he could work with Ben.  Not that I'm irritated or anything... We go back again on Oct. 15.  I am hoping that's the last trip until we do his wisdom teeth, but I'm not sure.




Speaking of teeth, Lizzie lost another one this week.  It was her other top front tooth, so now she's toothless and adorable!  This was the third tooth she's lost in about as many weeks.  She has another canine tooth that's pretty loose now, as well.  For a couple of weeks Lizzie had this solitary top tooth that hung at an angle because it was so loose. She slurred all her words because that tooth was just in the way.  Will called her a "hick"  when he saw her last weekend (specifically, a "Nebraska  Cornhusker Hick") When she saw him yesterday, she peeled up her lip and exclaimed, "See Will- I'm not a hick anymore!" 


The tooth actually came out Thurs. when the Littles spent the day at Jenn's.  I guess James, Lizzie's bio brother, encouraged her to twist the tooth and it popped right out.  Lizzie jumped up and exclaimed, "My mom will be so happy!  Now I can get my picture taken!"  I guess I must have expressed my hope out loud that the tooth would come out by the time we take her birthday pictures in Oct!


Of course, now we may have to wait to get Sam's pictures taken.  Jenn took all 8 of the kids to the park and Sam did a face dive off some piece of equipment and scraped up his whole face.  His nose was healing and then tonight in church he accidentally scraped the scab off and now it has to heal all over again.  Sigh...


I love taking the kids over to the Merritts.  All those kids absolutely love mine and the feeling is mutual.  James and Lizzie have an especially tight bond.  When we get there, they are in eachothers arms within moments and they are always the last one hugging goodbye.  Then, as we leave, James starts flying down the sidewalk on his long seven year old legs, waving and grinning all the way.  I cannot ever move and take those two away from eachother.  They need one another.




The other day I had some time to kill while David was at Learning RX so I took the Littles to the play area at Valley West.  Oh my goodness, they poor children must be deprived.  They were SO excited and couldn't keep exclaiming when they realized where I was taking them, "You are the best mommy, ever!  Thank you SO much!" and so on.  I just sat there reading my kindle while they played.  After awhile Lizzie bounced over to where I was  and her face was luminous.  She explained that she had been attempting some sort of jump or trick on the play things and, "I prayed to God to help me do it and He DID!  I thought God just answered prayers in the Bible times but He answered me!"


My emotions were so  torn right then.  Part of me wanted to do a face palm because I would hope that most of my parenting is geared toward helping the kids realize that God is real and relevant in their own lives.  Has she missed that in the 2 plus years I've had her?  But on the other hand, I was thrilled.  God is becoming real to Lizzie and as her mom, that excites me.


Now, of course, there will come a day when she doesn't make the jump.  Or she doesn't get the pony for her birthday that she prayed for.  Or, the part in the school play goes to someone else or a young man breaks her heart.  God's presence will need to be even more real to her when He gives her a different answer than the one she prayed for.  But for right now, in her 5 year old little world, we're going to enjoy the moment and say, "Yes, God DID hear your prayer and wasn't that wonderful of Him to allow you to make the jump?!"



I think a post or two ago I wrote some about the current senate and gubernatorial races going on in the state.  I'm not going to belabor the point, but I do have a couple of funny, related stories.


So, I mentioned that I am voting for Branstad.  I'm not bowled over by his performance, but he's not terrible, either.  I definitely don't want his opponent to win, and like I said, voting for third party candidates is usually pointless.  Well, 4 years ago I did vote for a third party candidate (Jonathan Narcisse).  I got a call this week from his campaign - he's running again - asking if they could come put a sign in my front yard again.  I felt kind of guilty knowing for whom I've already decided to vote, but told them, "sure!"  I'm not sure what kind of hypocrite that makes me.  David found out and said, "So let me get this straight.  You're voting for Branstad, right?"


"Um, hm"


"But you're putting a Narcisse sign in our yard?"




"You make no sense whatsoever, Mom."


Probably not.


Straight No Chaser, the accapella group (is that their name?  I always get the order of their name words mixed up because they don't make sense to me) re-recorded Dolly Parton's famous song from the seventies, "Jolene."  It's a pretty cool version of it.  Dolly even did this one with them.  We were listening to it in the van the other day and Lizzie said, "I didn't know they made a song about Joni Earnst!"  Poor kid has been watching way too many political commercials!



Will came home yesterday.  I had a list of things for him to fix, which he did.  He couldn't figure out the fridge, though.  I've been having some on-going trouble with the ice-maker and last week the freezer itself quit freezing for a few hours.  I don't know if they are separate or related problems.  I may have to call someone about that, but I am not sure who to talk to.  Paul would have known just what to do - grr....


He had me edit a paper he wrote for his Personal Evangelism class.  Oh, it was just like old times when he took his writing classes at the school a few years ago!  I love doing that kind of thing.  I helped him firm up the paper, but actually had very little to correct, grammar and punctuation-wise.  He is a good writer all by himself.  I'll be curious to see what kind of grade we get on it!


Then, he took Ben to the Des Moines symphony last night.  He was killing two birds with one stone - providing respite for Ben, for which he gets paid, and fulfilling one of the requirements for his music appreciation class at Faith.  Will is really struggling with that class.  He  has been telling me that and I immediately started feeling guilty that we were never able to provide more than a year of music lessons for him.  But then he told me everyone in the class is having trouble and it probably  has more to do with the professor than anything.  That made me feel better.


The guys got home around 10 and I asked them how they enjoyed it.  Ben just shook his head and went off to bed.  Will groaned and said, "I almost fell asleep.  This class is totally going to ruin any of my previous enjoyment of classical music!"  Ha, ha...I remember struggling in my classical music class at UNI.  I had 8 years of piano as a child but it sure didn't help me in the class.  I just found classical music so dry.  Now, 25 years later,  there is some I enjoy, but honestly - not a lot.  I guess I'm just not highbrow enough.  I like a beat and lyrics.  Bring out the fried chicken and lemonade in a red plastic cup.   That's who I am!



Well, that's all I had to write about for now.  It will be another busy week.  I'm on the hunt for a new front door.  After all the work I went to, stripping and repainting, I've decided to just replace the whole thing.  The paint just doesn't look all that great.  I want to start over.  Plus, with getting the new siding up soon, I want the door to match what I presume will be a nice-looking exterior.  I found what I want at Lowe's yesterday, but I don't want to pay $300 for a new front door, either.  So tomorrow Sam has an eye appt and I think we'll head over to the Habitat for Humanity Restore store and see what they have.


Thursday night a bunch of us are getting together to help my friend, Deb, make pizzas for her son's wedding rehearsal dinner Friday night.  The whole wedding planning by the bride leaves a lot to be desired and the other night at church Deb was about to have a break-down over this, I think.  So several of us told her we'd help her get this thing put on.  I'm going to bake some bars for the event, too. This is what I love about our church family and it feels good to be on the "giving" side of things for a change.  Saturday, the Littles and I will attend the wedding while Ben and David are at Faithfest in Ankeny. 

But I'm sure a whole lot of other stuff will happen between now and then! And before I know it, another week of surviving without Paul will have occurred.  I've noticed that I kind of view Sundays with a sense of relief anymore and I think it's because of the whole "survival" thing.  Every week that I make it is a week that I am stronger and more ready for a future without him.  Maybe it's called progress.


Or just survival.























































1 comment:

  1. I'm the same way about classical music. I don't like it. Sorry, I am who I am, and I don't like it!