Thursday, July 25, 2013

Thursday Thanks Tank #199

I am thankful for these things and more:

coffee in the morning
a successful frugal shopping trip
a recent camping trip
southern living magazine
a bouquet of flowers
a family hike
2 pregnant friends
a good visit at the allergist's office
a 2nd practice that went better than the 1st
homemade popsicles
my son's trip to camp
discovering photos that other people took of my son at camp
a rare afternoon of showers
the smell of rain
18 years of marriage

Friday, July 19, 2013

Trying to Keep Up

My baby, my first baby, is not home. Jonathan is experiencing his first full week away from home. I am experiencing my first week without one of my kids. It feels strange, wrong, wonderful and exciting all at once.

I keep having the odd feeling of something not being quite right. I keep telling myself, "This is it. This is the beginning of letting go." But I also know that letting go started a long time ago. I cannot believe he is so independent. He cannot be on his own at camp. How is that possible? Never mind that I was younger than him when I went to my first summer camp. It just such a different feeling from the other side. Is this how all parents feel? Is this how my mom felt? My other kids have been missing their big brother. I've told them more than once that Jonathan is having a great time and while he probably misses us at times (like at night or early in the morning), he won't admit to it when he gets home. I'm telling them that because I am reminding myself.

He's reached that age where being with your parents is not cool. Affection toward your parents in public? Out of the question. I hugged my boy in the privacy of my own kitchen before we took him to the drop off point. I hugged him tight. He hugged me back. He hugged me. In parking lot, he smiled at me. His eyes met my eyes. He said bye. My heart was bleeding. I exaggerate. I do. But, I was one of the last parents lingering in the parking lot. My husband had to suggest that we go ahead and leave - as to not be the very last parents hanging around as they loaded up and drove away.

He is stretching for independence. Running toward it in my eyes. Standing firmly in it, in his eyes.

This is a milestone for me. It's huge. It's small. I know that there are many more changes to come as he become a teenager next year. I know there are so many more milestones for me as he grows into a man.

I keep thinking about other mothering milestones I've experienced with my first born. I remember the surprise of emotions when I packed his first lunch for school (The Packed Lunch). It's been 6 years. 6 years!

He's grown. Of course he's grown. But, the hard part is realizing that along with getting bigger, he is growing up.
September 2007

June 2013

I am trying to keep up- recognizing the changes, loosening the grip, being readily available, and dedicated to prayer.

All the while, this week has kept me wondering about him: Is he having fun? Is he tired? Is he being picked on? Is he eating? Is he brushing his teeth? Does he miss me? What is he doing? Did he get sunburned? Will there be any pictures of him taken during the week? Did he pack everything he needed? Did he play paintball? Is he happy?

Motherhood is such a journey.

Speaking of a journey- I cannot wait for my son to get home tomorrow.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Such a mess~ Thursday Thanks Tank #198

It's Thursday. Where did the week go? This summer has been flying by...I cannot believe there are only 3 weeks of summer break left. I am very thankful for summer break. I've enjoyed time at the water park, running, chauffeuring my son to and from soccer camp, having neighborhood kids over, going camping, chauffeuring my kids to and from swim lessons, having the whole family at VBS -working and participating, late evenings, slow mornings, eating outside on the patio and more... tonight we are headed to the drive-in movies. I love summer. I am thankful for the relaxed schedule and my messy house. My house is so incredibly messy right now because I have been taking more time off than normal to have fun with the family. The living room is a spread of toys. The kids are in the middle of it right now. We were going to clean the toys up today but we decided -after very little deliberation- it could stay until tomorrow. I am behind, so behind,  on cleaning clutter piles, doing the laundry, cleaning the floors... okay, I'm not even going to keep thinking about all of the things I am behind on. The mess- this current mess- is just a sign that my time has been filled with more important activities. Oh, I do find it hard to relax in the mess... but somehow -much to my amazement- I've manage to keep up with the important and let go of what can be put aside. It is summer and I am enjoying it as much as I can. The mess can wait. I anticipate another night when my husband and I call the kids to "come quick" because we hear the ice cream truck. I look forward to the next night of talking to my husband as we sit on our front porch swing. It will get dark as we talk. The kids will be running around outside in their bare feet that are so dirty they look black. They will be up later much than they should. And, it will be wonderful.
I love summer.

I am thankful for summer break.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Lake Tahoe on the 4th~ A few favorite moments

After the Run to the Beach Trail Run at Kings Beach.

Zephyr Cove is a happy place.

I love the smiles I saw at Zephyr Cove.

My beach babe building a castle at Nevada Beach.

Mr. Sandman

Sunset at Nevada Beach

Our view of the Lake Tahoe fireworks from Nevada Beach was outstanding. (cell phone photo)

Family photo at twilight.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

One location, worlds apart, united by a need for love.

Tonight at VBS:

A mom yelled at her son during the session opening. It started on the way in from the line up outside and continued into the sanctuary of church. She wasn't really yelling. It was just really loud admonishment that couldn't be ignored by bystanders. He needed to be grateful. He needed to put on a happy face. Sometimes it takes a lot to make him happy. Could he just be okay? She needed to go. It was the one night she needed to be somewhere. Okay, FINE. Just one more song. Look at all of the other happy kids. The longer she stayed, the later she'd be. She just wanted to go to her Bible Study. He wanted her to stay and hear the songs.

Tonight at VBS:
A teenage kid stole an iphone. The evidence is based on the find my iphone app and where he was when the phone was turned back on. The find-my-iphone app pointed to a bus stop where he was waiting to take a bus to his group home. He was volunteering at church to get community service. His family life is complicated. He doesn't have the love of a family. From what little I know, his mom is a drug addict who isn't in his life and his dad left him and his brother with a girlfriend. The girlfriend (who is a member of the church) has legal custody of the teenager's brother but the teenager is in a group home and has services of social workers.

Two boys, worlds apart, in one location.

The boy that was yelled at was in my 1st grade group at VBS.
The iphone was one of ours. We lost an iphone. I have a heavy heart.

Two worlds collided. Such extremes. Two boys who desperately desire love.

Tonight, my boys and I prayed for a teenager whose needs are vast.
Tonight, I am struck by the diverse needs around me.