Sunday Journal: Searching for Home

Middle Boy practicing The Star Spangled Banner

Middle Boy practicing The Star Spangled Banner

My husband worked hard this week finishing the deck remodel. I helped a couple of days this week laying the…umm…dunno what it is called. Ha! It was a roll of shingle like stuff for waterproofing and I did most of the cementing/tarring…so I guess you could say I helped with the roofing. My home construction vocabulary is truly lacking. Anyway, my advise is to where gloves when handling those shingle rolls. I didn’t the first day and it felt like my hands had been sanded…ouch! I also got stung in the thumb by a bee which turned out to be far more of a bother than the sanded hands. We owe a huge thanks to a couple of my husbands friends who came over to help him with the deck. My husband didn’t ask for help but real friends never need to be asked…they’re just there.

the house

the house

In the middle of the week we traveled to Frankfort to look at potential homes. I wasn’t looking for a house but a place for our family to call “home”. All of the homes we toured were beautiful. Some required a little more care than we were willing to undertake at this time. The first house we walked through was still under construction but in the final stages of finishing work. It was truly lovely but not on my list. I just couldn’t imagine living in something so nice. The two houses I expected to like the most I really disliked. One was just too big and the very idea of trying to keep such a place clean made we want to cry. The second house was in one of those neighborhoods packed like a sardine can. I just felt pressed in. I do have one tip to pass along for anyone trying to sell their home. Please, please do not

enjoying Donato's pizza in our hotel room

enjoying Donato’s pizza in our hotel room

overdo the scented wax/candles, oils, incense, potpourri, and scented paint. I wondered what sort of smells the owners were trying to cover. Also, none of those things cover up pet smells or mold. Wet dog, cat litter box and vanilla just do not go together. My allergies kicked-in and then my sinuses went into overdrive.

I really couldn’t figure out which home my husband liked the most. I wanted him to be happy and I wanted to choose the house that he preferred. My favorite ended up being the first house, the new house. We made an offer on it

the next morning and then drove back home. We’ll find out tomorrow if our offer is accepted or not.

Zee

Zee

Today was a tough day. I told our church family that we would be with them for only one more Sunday. Several people cried. I felt humbled to know that the love I felt for the people at this church was returned. I cried.

I also found a new home for Zee our cat today. We are afraid to take her with us. She has never lived in the city environment and we fear she will get hit by a car. She is also moody and terrible with children…well everyone really. She would be a terrible neighborhood cat! I called my friend Mrs. Cuddle-me and she agreed to accept Zee. I am grateful. Then I cried. Zee is our cat and we are attached to her even if she has a horrible disposition.

Journal: Last Things and Sparkles Horrible Day

Sparkles and Littlest at the doctor's office

Sparkles and Littlest at the doctor’s office

Sparkles bad day began last night. She was helping (in her own “head in the clouds” special way) carry old wood to the burn pile. We (my husband really…but marriage makes everything a “we”) are removing the old worn out deck off the master bedroom and sprucing it up a bit for the market. In all the years we lived in this house we never used the deck. Anyway, Sparkles stepped on a nail last night and it went through her shoe and punctured her foot. She just cried and cried…the end is near and all that. I scrubbed her foot clean and treated it with an antibiotic ointment. While I tended to her foot Littlest suddenly morphed into the sweetest little brother on God’s lovely earth. He hugged his sister and told her everything would be okay. He patiently loved on her, got her tissues, her favorite doll, and just doted on her! I was just a tad bit mystified…what happened to my OCD toddler who flips out when there isn’t enough ice cubes in his cup!?? Littlest surprised me last night.

Oldest working on the deck

Oldest working on the deck

This morning I took Sparkles to the doctor’s office. Her tetanus booster is due next month and since she stepped on a rusty nail they decided she’s better have her shot today. We also left with a prescription to fill incase she ends up with an infection. Littlest went with us to the office and again her chose to comfort his sister. He tried to be silly but when her nerves got the best of her and she started to cry again he sat on the examining table with her and told her everything would be okay. For all her tears and fears when it came time for the shot…she did not cry. I hugged her and Littlest held her hand and she didn’t shed a tear.

limbo at the skating rink

limbo at the skating rink

Later today while playing outside Sparkles was stung twice by wasps. Today is not her day. She cried and cried and told me she would never go outside again…that Mother Nature hated her! I cleaned her leg (that same one with the nail puncture) and gave her an ice pack. Littlest snuggled with her on the couch and told her everything would be okay. Once again he morphed into a perfect little nurse for his sister fetching books and blankets for her.

Blessed are you O Lord for giving my children loving siblings! As a mother I feel a bit ashamed to be surprised by his tenderness toward his sister. He is so demanding of me that I forget just

Middle Boy pretending to be an angel

Middle Boy pretending to be an angel

how sweet and loving he truly can be. Thank you Lord for opening my eyes!

Sparkles wasn’t the only one to encounter the nastier side of nature this week. Last Monday I was bit by a Brown Recluse Spider. My thigh is still swollen and bothersome. Fortunately I am not as sensitive to their venom as other people. The first couple of days the bite just burned and then it itched like crazy for a few days after that. Now it is just a bit sensitive and swollen. I think it will be fine by the end of this week. Lucky me.

Other than a few math lessons we did not get much schooling in. The kids have helped with the deck remodel this week. Next week we will get to a somewhat regular schooling schedule. I’ll

Batman at the drive-in

Batman at the drive-in

likely be meeting with movers, inspectors and realtors next week but most of our current “moving projects” will be finished. I am praying that by the end of September we will be moved into our new home and getting ready for our second first day of school for the year.

We did manage to cram a bit of fun into our week. We went to the drive-in one more time and saw Pixels and Antman. The kids had a blast playing at the drive-in before the movies started. Littlest wore his Batman cape and chased off all the bad guys. Later this week we also went to our favorite skating rink and then out to Popeye’s for a late lunch/early dinner.

I’m ready to be done with “last things” before we move. Except for our church. I do not want to say goodbye…I don’t want to go for the last time. I’m rubbish at “goodbye”.

Linking up with: Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers

Afterthoughts on Ordinary Moments

wpid-20150716_161940.jpgFirst of all I want to thank Lindsay over at Between Hallowed Breaths for the inspiration for this series. I read her post and felt drawn to uncover my own search for these moments that really escape my notice most of the time. I try to practice being present in the moment with my family and my God but the necessities of life come crashing through my day and motherly commitments overtake my intentions. Daily I pray and strive to abide with God and daily I fail. Currently I am slowly reading through The Way of the Pilgrim and learning to live with the Jesus Prayer taught in the book. I only get through one or two pages a day sometimes maybe half a page. Through this thirty-day challenge I found myself turning to the Jesus Prayer for comfort and as a hook to remain in the moment seeking “the Holy Ordinary in the wholly ordinary” moments of my life.

breakfast with Batman

breakfast with Batman

I accepted this challenge without thought…just jumped into the waters…both feet forward. I’ve lived my entire life that way. When I feel the Spirit move me I just jump…sometimes into heartbreaking tragedy and other times endless joy. Trusting Jesus with abandon is the only way to live…for me anyway. I’ve always had faith in Him…even as a child. My earthly father taught me there is no god. Despite my father’s beliefs and numerous beatings to prove his point my faith never wavered. Faith is a gift from God above…why He graced me with such a gift I will never understand. I am grateful because this gift has sustained me through the darkest hours of my life and made the bright moments of my life all the more beautiful.

I’ve been through hell and bliss with Him and He has never abandoned me.

my husband and Middle Boy at Hutchen's BBQ

my husband and Middle Boy at Hutchen’s BBQ

The night I accepted this challenge my husband had left on his own life changing pilgrimage. He had left the part of the work he called “home” to interview for new career opportunities. I knew the potential for life changing events was well in hand. My husband received an offer but not for the job he really wanted. He was so disappointed when the offer he wanted did not come. I was overwhelmed with his disappointment. I wept for my husband. A man needs good work…work he loves. As I cried for my husband I asked the Lord to give him the job he really wanted. I told Jesus how much my husband sacrificed for me and our children. Couldn’t he for once have what he wanted? Please Lord! And teach us to accept Your Will with joy in our hearts. I end all of my prayers asking for joy to accept His Will for my life.

at Uncle D's birthday celebration

at Uncle D’s birthday celebration

God answered my prayer. When the job offer my husband wanted came I offered prayers of thanksgiving. I was not surprised only grateful that God heard me. I thanked my God for answering my prayer. I also thanked Him for my husband and for guiding my husband to share his heart with me so I would know how to pray for him. I also thanked God for this opportunity to pray big for my husband…to ask for his dream and see it happen. I thanked God for giving me the kind of faith that can pray big dreams and expect answers.

This thirty days saw amazing changes in our family’s life. Despite all the big other than ordinary changes taking place, I took the time to concentrate on the everyday beautiful moments. My

convergence of Ohio and Kentucky Rivers

convergence of Ohio and Kentucky Rivers

children are growing into amazing people. I have the privilege of watching them grow. I learned I need to take time each day to see and appreciate who they are at this moment. These moments I have with them are fleeting and in an instant will be gone forever. I am so incredibly blessed at this time to be their mother and guide in life. Each day, once passed is lost to the mists of history. I must grasp each day and live it beautifully with my family…intentionally in this moment. Be here, right here, right now…that is what I learned with this thirty-day challenge.

I think I should do this again…sometime next year.

Sunday Journal: Strike That, Reverse It…

Littlest pretending to mow

Littlest pretending to mow

Remember last week when I said we were moving to northern Kentucky?! Well, never mind that. We’re going to Frankfort now (our state capitol for those who do not know). I’m excited to move there and in all honesty ready for this moving business to be over with. I think there will be many, many exciting opportunities for a homeschooling family to get involved with in the area.  I’ve already reached out to a couple of homeschooling groups in the city and nearby county.

As a military kid I grew up kinda like an urban nomad. We never stayed anywhere for long. I’ve never felt an attachment to a place. Or so I thought anyway. I am so excited to move back to central Kentucky. I met and married my husband in the region. The first place I ever thought of

Athena

Athena

as “home” was when I moved into my husband’s house all those years ago. There is a vast difference between a house and a home.  My enthusiasm for this move took me by surprise. After mulling over these feelings I realized that in my heart I feel like I am returning home. For me this is a new feeling and a strange revelation. I’m going home…feels weird and exciting.

Before we leave the western end of the state we’re going to be doing a few things “for the last time” all while getting the house ready for the market. This week we went to Nashville so the boys could spend their Lego gift cards they received during Lego Camp a couple of months ago. We also went to Centennial Park in Nashville to visit the Parthenon. I’ve now seen a 41 foot golden state of Athena! The Parthenon also houses an art museum and a history of the park. We’ve been intending to visit since Oldest studied ancient history. We didn’t explore the entire park but did see an obelisk, train, and a fighter jet on the grounds as well.

my husband and Middle Boy at Hutchen's BBQ

my husband and Middle Boy at Hutchen’s BBQ

This week we also enjoyed a last breakfast at Hutchen’s BBQ. We’ve gone there to celebrate each new school year since we started homeschooling. Yesterday we went to Mayfield for the Top Gun Cruise-in. I felt a bit sad as I just love hanging out at the town square and looking at all the classic cars. I always pick a favorite car each time and imagine what it would be like to ride…never drive…just cruising in the passenger seat next to my husband. We’re hoping to go to the drive-in movies one more time and the skating rink too. Maybe one more walk at Kentucky Dam or drive around Land Between the Lakes.

my Sparkles has sad eyes...even when she smiles

my Sparkles has sad eyes…even when she smiles

We did manage to cram a bit of schooling in this week. I’m very disappointed in the Sonlight science we chose for this year. I thought the literature would be a bit more…”living” for lack of a better word. We are so spoiled with the quality of books we’ve used through Beautiful Feet Books that anything lacking the same quality is a bit disappointing. The good thing about this Sonlight science (core F, human anatomy) is we can bang out and entire week of study in about an hour…after tossing all the repeated busywork. So we are going to finish up this science curriculum during the moving period. I’m pretty sure we are going to use Dr. Jay Wile’s new elementary science series and Oldest will just move on to middle school science. For math the crew is taking a break from their regular curriculum and working on shoring up their math facts. I need to have them work on their facts twice a day so far we only get it in during the mornings. We’re only putting in half days of school at the moment but they are cramming with “life lessons” for now.

Linking up with: Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers

Ordinary Moments

This morning we went out for breakfast at Hutchen’s BBQ. We wanted to enjoy our favorite breakfast spot one last time.

DSC00053 (640x480)DSC00044 (640x480)

We then headed to Nashville to the Lego store. Followed by lunch at Macaroni Grill.

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Afterward we went to Centennial Park to explore the Parthenon. We’ve been intending to see the replica since we studied ancient history. The place is amazing.

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We’re taking a little time this coming week to savor a few favorites just one more time before we move away in the next few weeks.

Ordinary Moments

petunias

petunias

I didn’t…

Pack a thing today…nor tidy the house.

Laundry sits all a mess.

Abandoned my terribly long to-do list.

I did…

Sit on my porch enjoying sunshine and breezes…

Picked tiny carrots from my garden and fed the bunnies…while snuggling them in my lap.

Smelled every flower in my yard.

Day 28 of 30