Monday, August 24, 2009

My girl calls it 'crumbly'

That is how I am feeling. I am overwhelmed and feel disjointed or disconnected. I don't feel like I am communicating well and things are coming out wrong. I feel like I have been putting out fire after fire, surviving, rather than living. It is catching up with me. I hate feeling this way.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

How do I feel?

So, Max was playing a game on my computer the other night. It was getting late and I told him he'd had enough time on the computer, it was time to get off. He was a good boy, and got off without complaining. But then he ran into Brian in Max's bedroom to let him know he couldn't play anymore. What? Brian was playing with his brother, Jeff. I hadn't known MAX was playing with the two of them!! I reversed my decision and Max had to hustle to get back on and catch up with the guys.

Brian has played computer games with his brother about once a week for our whole marriage. I always am thankful that Brian's hobby keeps him close to home. Max of course loves computers, too, able to log on and start disk games before he was 2 (during midwife appointments). And Brian has played games with both kids before. But this felt momentous. Max was playing with Brian AND Jeff. Jeff is not a kid person. That Max was good enough to keep up with them felt...well, that is just it. I don't know how I feel.

First I feel silly making a big deal out of obsessive computer gaming. LOL Second, I feel that it is really cool and some post-modern rite of passage into manhood for Max to join in--even in the fact that Max felt like a tag along. Third, I feel a little sad about the whole thing. LOL

My baby is growing up to be a full-fledged geek!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Some changes need to happen

We just found out that we are losing the $120 a month we get for being in a rural health care area plus we will have a 10% tax on us now. Sneaky way to cut our pay ten percent without furloughs or a straightforward pay cut. They are certainly creative about getting around the law.

That is another several hundred dollars. I need to get a job, or we need to move out of this place and get into a rental. But I looked at some rentals and they all prohibit pets! Wow! It has been 8 years since we rented, and I hadn't thought about Bailey being a problem.

Lord, please provide for us!

Conflict makes me sick!

Our Field Day was a decided hit! Everyone showed up, a couple of extras did, too! No injuries, no crying. everyone worked hard and played hard. Lots of complements came through on the email and that is very nice.

But just as we were about to begin welcoming families a big school group showed up. Turns out is was Head Start. The leader is named Linda and she had been incredibly rude to me in May when I called for advice regarding how many fliers to print. She told me no one would come to our booth, that the Fair is about kids so I shouldn't try promoting myself. Anyway, she was in fine form yesterday. She showed up with her body and face taught, ready to fight. She called Parks and Recreation because we wouldn't leave. We told her we made reservations.

It got ugly. Their kids tore up our obstacle courses, One dad from the other group started yelling at me, so another dad from our group stood up for me. Such a mess. I was shaking like a leaf!!!

Things smoothed out after the leader left the area--the group was using the park, horse corral, and the Pizza Factory. The other parents were polite and we coexisted peacefully enough.

I just heard that poor Carla was last to leave and her battery died!!! So, with 6 kids, including a 5 month old, walked to the Pizza Factory to call her husband for help. Ugh! What a day. Good, but really trying.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Field Day

I am getting ready for our first annual homeschool field day! It looks like we could have just about 70 or 80 people there!! And we thought it would be more like 50, but at the last minute a whole bunch of registrations (of large families) came through. Carla is working super hard and I am praying that she doesn't burn out.

The cool thing about this is that just in May, we did the Children's Fair. At that event, Carla and I had to depend on our out of town sisters to help us with preparation and execution of the event. This time around, however, Carla sent out a food list and it was covered in ONE DAY!!! I know Carla may not feel it, because I played lead at the Children's Fair and she is playing lead with this, so her work load is massive. She may not be able to see what a huge change has happened in our group. And I may see it as larger than it is, going from lead to not, so my load is significantly less.

Either way, I am praising the Lord for the change, whatever the size. I am so happy we have members investing in KidsROCK.

I pray that today is a success. I know that with 50 kids we will have poor sportsmanship, owies, hunger, and general crying. But I pray that the adults stay calm, peaceful and positive. I pray that the strangers will see a community based in Christ. I pray that everyone goes home feeling terrific and tells SOMEONE that KidsROCK is a good thing.

I also found out something about a family. Something that others could use to be mean and judgemental. I pray, pray, pray that our members will rise up and shine Christ instead. That the temptation to judge and to rest in pride will be resisted every time. I pray that this family is blessed and astonished by the grace present in KR.

I pray everyone stays healthy!! We have some babies and pregnant mommies. Some are very afraid of germs in general, and the swine flu looms large for them. I pray that they are kept at peace.


Friday, August 14, 2009


We tried to catch some more of the meteorites the night before last (we watched last night, too, but only saw three or four). We some some wonderful, spectacular things!!! We quoted Bible verses and prayed together in wonder of how very cool God's fireworks are. We got in some science, too, talking about why they all streaked in the same direction.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

See the Stars?

So it is meteor shower time. I haven't ever taken my kids out to to see it. It is always late--of course--and ...I don't know. I just haven't.

Well last night we gave it a try. KidsROCK has had lots of chatter about it, so it seemed a good time. And we are doing Astronomy for school!

But we got out with a blanket on the trampoline and were laying back, looking at the sky, and it happened! I remembered!! I hadn't even remembered I had forgotten, but it all came flooding back as I strained to 'see what I could see.'

I was seven again. Everyone would shout with excitement, 'see it??' What? Where? I don't see it!

IT was meteors. IT was stars. IT was mountain ranges. IT was horses, cows, trees, the car in front of us. *sigh* I couldn't see IT.

So, here I am, cuddled under a blanket with a kid snuggled under each arm--with a dog straying in and out of us with random licks and ear snuffing--and realizing that these poor darling trusting children are so sweetly unsuspecting that they have been saddled with the worst person ever to get anywhere in this bold endeavor. (It takes a great pity-partier, to do it on behalf of others!)

I don't know if we saw anything. I thought I did. But the harder I looked, the less I saw. Stars faded from sight as I stared. Is that a star? Is it a planet? I never got that planets were colors. I mean, I understand their atmospheres reflect back colors, and with special equipment you can see it, but with the naked eye, I just don't see color from so far away!

I marvel at the other person's human eye! I marvel at the wonders of the heavens--from my couch, looking at beautiful pictures in books. :(

Sunday, August 9, 2009

small testimony

So, I was reading Matthew where Jesus calls people to Him who are weary and heavy laden. He says His yoke fits and is light. I rolled over to pray immediately. I told Him I didn’t feel like it is so easy. I had just watched STUPID movie called Confessions of a Shopaholic and there was this scene that caught my attention. This girl has run up debt shopping for fashion and it all catches up with her in a major and public way. Her loving parents whisk her away. The mom walks up to the dad and shows him a book and asks if it is too late. The book is titled something like how to raise financially fit children. My breath caught in my throat. There is SO MUCH to do!!

I felt overwhelmed. I feel panicked, like I am missing the boat, behind, neglectful, less than. I have to raise kids who are fit spiritually, academically, socially, emotionally, physically and financially. I am sure I am missing some -ciallies! So, there I was, praying about feeling like I just can’t do it all. I go through the day painfully aware of my lacking, while being too lazy to do much more about it than feel guilty and self-loathing.

Right at that moment, Brian walked in and asked if I wanted to go for a walk. It is a small thing, but I felt like God was telling me I am not alone. Not only do I have God, but I have Brian, too.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

What a day!

Yesterday we rose at 5 am to get ready for a tour to the Shasta Caverns. We found out the day before we left that our planned route had been shut down because of fire, so we scrambled to let the group know we had to leave an hour earlier to take a longer route around the fire.

We got to bring the Wests in our car, and that is something of a treat for us. She is great company and our kids get along really well--and there is not a bad traveler of the four of them!

When we got there we ate lunch and then worked to buy the tickets. There were just under 50 of us, and Carla and I had a rough time getting numbers to add up. We checked it over and over, but still didn't have enough money. I still don't know what happened, but we just paid and got moving.

All over the place were posted signs that backpacks, food and drinks were not allowed. I had each of us saddled with backpacks and water, but we put them back in the van, and it made me worry. It is hot, and I know I need water, and I thought the kids would struggle not having any, too.

Well, I was right. Climbing and descending over 500 stairs took a toll. Then we waiting on the bus while they looked for our driver for 10 minutes after the tour--we baked! I thought the cool breeze of the boat ride back would give me enough to get back to the van and drink, but it wasn't.

The group wanted to do pictures on the waterfront, so I stood for them, but my legs wouldn't stop shaking. It had happened before, but I can't remember when--I was a little foggy. Anyhow, of course, I fainted. And we had a new family and I was standing next to her. And the guy taking pictures got one of me on the ground. *sigh* People focused on me, and really, I think Max was in as serious shape as I was. He was unable to sit on the boat. Once we all got back up the hill closer to the van, he downed 16 oz so quickly, I was afraid he was going to throw it up.

So, is the lesson 'break the rules'?? After we got back up top, I was a little surprised by all the people who had backpacks and tons of people brought water. I was trying to be a good girl!

We had originally planned to do dinner with the group, but everyone had had enough, and so the families dispersed and made their way home separately. It turned out to be a good thing. Instead of Red Robin, we hit Denny's in Red Bluff and kids ate free!! Cool Deal. And I think we made much, much better time.

I can't imagine being gone from home longer than we were--13 hours. The longest we've left poor Bailey. When we came up to the house, we could hear her howling. She was so loud she didn't hear us approaching. So, I opened the door and she was on the back of the couch , nose raised to ceiling, crying her heart out. That was so very sad!!

Glad we went, don't imagine doing it again any time soon. :)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Thunder! Lightning!

We got quite a show last night!! Man! The power of thunder and lightning inspires awe. It is so silly, but I had to keep reminding myself that it wasn't God! It would arc across the sky (once with no room to get the 'one' in my 'one mississippi') and the thunder would roll on for over a minute. I would say in my mind, 'wow, God, I hear you.' Or, 'you are so powerful.' He is powerful, but I felt like I got a taste of how and why people worship His creation. It is pretty awesome stuff!!!

I am thankful God has revealed Himself to my family line and that I learned about Him so early in life. I am thankful I can see beyond His creations--even if just by a tiny measure--to know there is a Maker of these wonderful things who is so much more than any one of them.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Gearing Up

Life goes in cycles, doens't it? Last April was busy and hectic and exciting--though pretty demanding. The Children's Fair was coming, The Quarterly Planning Meeting fast approaching and I was going to watch Katie's kids for a week in May. I was thankful by the end of May that things were going to calm down. I was a little miffed in June that it didn't feel like we had calmed down. It still felt busy.

But, here I am again, QPM approaching in a couple of weeks, Club PALS picking back up in September, Field Day before that. I now know that no matter how it may have felt I hadn't been busy in June. I am not yet busy, but on the precipice now. It is exciting, and a little stressfull. Just holding al the thoughts in my head seems to be the biggest challenge. And, as always, money. I think if it weren't for the nagging question, 'how are you going to pay for that?' I would be able to throw myself into what is approaching more fully.

But Field Day, Planning Meetings and Club PALS cost money. No one has any. I have to go shopping for supplies. The date isn't as far as I pretend it is. We are going to break KidsROCK's bank Tuesday with a field trip that just better be worth it, because I still don't have what I need for coming classes, and will be getting fancy with my own checking account to make it all work.

Man, money stinks!

But being active in the events of KidsROCK doesn't. I am excited about the regularity of Club PALS. The ladies in our group are really neat, and I have missed seeing them over summer. I am looking forward to seeing who shows up at the Field Day.

I think it is our second litmus test regarding how much work we put into raising our profile in the community. We bust our buns to pull these types of events off. If the showing isn't good, we knowthat the effort isn't needed. We haven't prayed as diligently about God bringing to the Field day people looking for friendship to the park. I will do that right now.

Father, please be the head of KidsROCK, guiding our activities and membership. Bless those involved, water and grow relationships for either a season or a lifetime--Your will, Lord is what we want. Help us not to do things in our own strength, or follow our own paths. Keep us from running ahead or slipping behind the pace you set for us. Amen.