Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins #147

Barely got this one in under the wire!

1. The crickets sing, and I wish they would stop so I could go back to sleep.

2. Make the world a better place, wherever you are.

3. I want to get far away from the daily grind for a relaxing time with my man.

4. I was not really unmarried and desperately looking for a husband; this was a dream from which I was grateful to awaken.

5. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:15).

6. I still live in the town which I come from. It has changed since I was a kid, though.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to watching The Soup with my husband to be astounded by the idiotic people on TV, tomorrow my plans include going to a scrapbooking session and Sunday, I want to see my parents who have been on vacation in northern California this week!


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I usually don't do this, but CynthiaK at Crumbs in the Minivan gave me one of the Honest Scrap awards and I thought the accompanying meme was fun enough to participate in and pass along. Thanks, Cynthia! So without further ado, here are the rules:

*Say thank you and give a link to the presenter of the award
*Share “10 Honest Things” about myself
*Present the award to 10 other bloggers whose blogs I find brilliant in content and/or design or to those who have encouraged me
*Be sure to tell the 10 bloggers chosen that you are giving them the Honest Scrap award and provide the guidelines for them

Here are 10 honest things about me. I said "honest," not necessarily "interesting!"

1. I taught myself to read when I was 3 1/2. So I skipped kindergarten, which I now regret because kindergarten is the best year of school!

2. My undergraduate major was psychology. I like to analyze everything.

3. I don't really like massages. They just don't make me feel relaxed.

4. My first real haircut was when I was thirty. It's a long story, but basically I had never cut my hair before because of religious reasons, and then my beliefs changed.

5. I never met a carb I didn't like. Well, maybe Cool Ranch Doritos (no offense if you like those. I like nacho Doritos.)

6. I have read every book C.S. Lewis wrote.

7. I would love to one day have a two-story library, like the one in Beauty and the Beast.

8. I read cookbooks for fun. Sometimes I actually cook a recipe out of one of them.

9. I never skipped a college class for no reason. Not once. (I am such a nerd.)

10. I don't really enjoy hot baths or hot tubs, because I get overheated easily and then my head itches. No massages, no bubble baths--I really need to find something that helps me relax (and that doesn't involve eating a bag of Hershey's Kisses!)

And now for the 10 bloggers to whom I am giving this award:

Killing a Fly With a Ukelele Is Probably the Wrong Thing To Do

All About Your Child

The Fritz Facts

Bad Mom

Graze If You Want To But Don't Eat Dirt

Joyful Juggling

Welcome to My World

Mindless Junque

The Journey to the Hot Tub

Frog and Toad Are Still Friends

I don't mind if you don't want to post your own list. Just know that I enjoy knowing you through your blog!


Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins #146

Thank you all for those nice comments. You are sweet.

How about some Friday Fill-Ins?

1. So are we going to eat any time soon?

2. An exciting adventure is what's up ahead.

3. I love to cuddle with my children even though it's uncomfortable when they pile on top of me.

4. I need caffeine of some sort.

5. I walk a straight line.

6. Laughter is the true elixir of life!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to eating chicken shwarma, tomorrow my plans include taking Miss Pink to a pedicure birthday party and Sunday, I want to go to the women's class which is watching Beth Moore's "Believing God" Bible study!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Something New

We are now going on our third day of being housebound--Miss Pink has had a mild fever and a cough--and I was almost wanting to take her to the doctor just to have something to do. But noooo, the nurse said it sounds like she'll be fine and they don't need to see her. So my mom is apparently wrong when she fears that it's the swine flu and calls to tell me what the paper says about the latest statistics. That's so comforting, as you might imagine.

I believe I promised to tell you about the other big decision I had to make last week.

The wonderful lady who has been babysitting Mr. Blue had to give me two weeks' notice. She felt bad about it but she needs to start picking up her other two grandchildren from school and she doesn't have room in her car for five kids. Of course I was stunned and disappointed since it was working out so well, but I understand because I know why she needs to be there for her grandkids (I'd better not mention why since there is a tiny chance they could find this blog and the family is keeping the situation private).

Anyway, I went to work with my head spinning. I decided my options were 1) put Mr. Blue in a full-time preschool/daycare program; 2) try to find other at-home care; or 3) see if my mom and Justin could split taking care of him two days a week as Justin had offered to do before I found this sitter. My mom is not available to keep him very often, and he couldn't nap at Justin's shop, so #3 was the least desirable. I only had a couple of possibilities for #2, and quite frankly I'm not crazy about how unreliable individuals are turning out to be.

At lunchtime, I decided to call the church-affiliated preschool he went to last year, where Miss Pink went for three years; they have a full-time program as well. Now that I am needed to sub as many days a week as I want to, I can afford to put him there. They have the same preschool curriculum for the FT kids as the two-or-three-mornings-a-week kiddos; they just eat lunch and an extra snack and have extra playtime. At the beginning of the school year they did not have a spot in his class, and now they do. The director was willing to apply the registration fee which I had originally turned in for the PT preschool program (before I decided to sub) to this program, so I only have to pay a small supply fee and the tuition, which is due weekly.

So here are the pros and cons.

  • I completely trust the directors at the school. We never had any problems with them during the whole time my kids attended preschool. The center is very clean, the kids seem happy, the state guidelines are followed, the classes are small with a good child-to-teacher ratio, and the food they cook always smells good (a weird positive, but true). This sounds like a lot of pros, but really it is all part of what I have said before: if I have to put my kids in a FT daycare, this one is a good one.
  • It is priced reasonably, only a little more than I was paying per day for at-home care. Which means I will not be working just to pay for day care; I will be helping our finances even though my primary reason for subbing is to make contacts to help me get a full-time teaching job.
  • Mr. Blue is really getting interested in letters and numbers, noticing them everywhere. Of course we read and identify letters and numbers, but he will like learning more about them at school. It's a relaxed, not-too-academic program that I think will be great. I wanted him to go to a school-type program next year anyway, so this is just starting early.
  • I don't have to take him in if I'm not working, or if I work a half-day. (Of course, I still have to pay for it, which I'll discuss in the Con section.)
  • I have to pay for it even if he's not going to be there. So if we have a week like this one, when a child is sick for multiple days, or Christmas, when I can't work, I still have to pay to keep his spot. This pains me. It won't be nearly as much of an issue when I have a regular full-time job. (Because then I will be the teacher hoping not to use up too many sick days. Aaargh, the trials of being a working parent, they are beginning.)
  • The whole idea of having him in a daycare at all. Seriously, I thought about not posting this list at all because of the people who could read this and think what a selfish cow I am to be working when we've managed to survive for seven years with me as a SAHM. But my husband and I really do believe this is the direction we need to go as a family. Still, being able to sleep in and cuddle with the kids is awesome and I plan to enjoy it when it is possible.
So there it is. We are going to try it. Like every change that happens in our lives, we will have to try to find a new way to balance.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Remembering To Count My Blessings

It feels like I just posted here, yet it turns out that was nearly a week ago. Huh. Time for an update, I guess! I'll be glad to get to write posts that don't have to do with all the challenges we're facing, but I am slowly starting to realize that I'm never going to get to a place this side of Heaven with no problems. They truly are part of life, they apparently come in packs, and yet I am choosing to believe that I can learn to deal with them and remember how blessed I actually am.

First, my MIL did get to come home from the hospital on Thursday. On Wednesday and Thursday, Justin went to her house and finished up the tile on her shower. (It was undone because she is normally a bath person but it would be too hard for her to climb in and out of her deep tub in her weakened state.) Then he got home Thursday night and the kids and I were so happy to see him. For me, the relief was palpable. Just knowing he is home takes a huge burden off my shoulders. I only worked three days last week, but I was SO tired by the kids' bedtime because I just never got a break. With him home, the effort of taking care of the kids' needs is cut in half--he does half the snacks and drinks, Mr. Blue's bath, and we take turns doing the bedtime routine with each kid. Then on Saturday we made blueberry muffins for breakfast, vegged for a while and then cleaned the house. I felt so much better after that--the previous Saturday, I just could not make myself clean anything besides the necessary dishes and clothes. I have always admired single parents but every time I have to pretend to be one, my admiration goes through the roof.

Anyway, my MIL may start her next chemo treatment by the end of the week. I am praying that this time she will not have any complications because three weeks in the hospital is not fun for anyone involved.

Oh, also our air conditioner stopped working one day when it was eighty degrees. On a day when I was insanely hormonal, so I cried a lot during Mr. Blue's nap. This is when it was good that Justin wasn't here, because I didn't take it out on him or anyone else. A friend who has an A/C business also happens to owe Justin some money for a cabinet, so voila--free repair. It wasn't that extensive, just a few wires and a switch, but given the current state of our bank account, free is good. Then it promptly turned rainy and chilly, but the heater wouldn't have worked either, so getting it fixed was good.

I started trying to write about another big decision I had to make last week but then I realized it was going to make this post way too long. Miss Pink has a fever today, so although she didn't miss school today due to Columbus Day, she will need to stay home for tomorrow at least, and I will post about it then. Sorry if saying "I was going to tell you but now you're just going to have to wait!" is annoying.

Thanks for reading my thoughts. Writing things down helps me process things so much better than when my brain goes around in circles trying to figure everything out. I have a journal in a file on my computer in which I REALLY get transparent with myself even when it's ugly, but a lot of the time I just put a copy of what I wrote here. And your comments always mean a lot to me.

So thanks. Thank you very much. I wasn't kidding when I said I am blessed.


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Things That Happened

This is too late for a "What I Learned This Week" post--and also some of these are not things I learned--but rather things that happened in the past week.

"Things that happened." What a great job I am going to do teaching kids how to write in vivid, interesting ways! "Do as I say, kids, not as I do on my blog."
  • Everything is harder when Daddy isn't around. We all miss him like crazy.
  • My MIL is doing better. The problem, which was pinpointed by a culture they took last week? She had a yeast infection and a herpes infection in her lungs. I didn't even know that could happen (although I knew secondary infections often set in after the chemo weakens the person's immune system). Well, now that the doctors know what to treat her for, she's improved enough that she can go home Thursday.
  • Last week I was with third graders three days in a row. Yesterday, I was at the high school watching videos on macroeconomics and world religions. It was much less noisy, I'll tell you that. Plus no one punched another kid in the nose, as happened in the third grade classroom. After questioning, we learned that the kid who got punched had been making fun of the other one the day before, and the puncher's mom had told him, "If he does it again, punch him in the nose."
So he did. Niiiiiice parenting, there.
  • On Sunday we were sitting in traffic and Mr. Blue said in the most resigned voice, "I dess we're gonna sit here forever." I had to laugh because that's what I often say when I'm waiting to turn and can't get an opening in traffic.
  • While we were grocery shopping, he saw some ceramic pumpkins. "Look at those pumpkins with their angry eyes," he said. Not scared, just observationally.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins #144

I'm home this Friday so here is this week's Friday Fill-In.

1. I have a history of worrying too much.

2. Where I am going to teach next year is something I wish I knew.

3. I'm eating (or recently ate) microwave popcorn.

4. My husband is on the road to see his mom in the hospital.

5. So that's it, that's the difficult situation our family is in.

6. Having my husband leave this morning instead of last night is better than nothing!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to chilling and watching something with the kids, tomorrow my plans include getting together with my parents if possible and Sunday, I want to go to the women's Bible study of Beth Moore's book Believing God!

Sorry this post was a little bit of a downer. We are hanging in there. Since my MIL is hospitalized in a city 2 hours from home (she chose to do her treatments where they had the newest technology and best doctors), Justin has to go and trade out with his sister. His mom developed pneumonia after the first chemo treatment and the CT scan showed her lungs are not clearing up after the antibiotics and breathing treatments. They took a sample of the fluid in her lungs yesterday, but we haven't heard the results yet.

At one point we thought his mom might be released this week, and we thought we might take the kids to Louisiana to welcome her home, but that couldn't happen. Another time. We appreciate your thoughts and prayers.