Monday, August 24, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY August 24, 2009...
Outside my window...A squirrel has found a treat. It's wet from an overnight rain that no one heard.
I am thinking...about things we need to do today and how fast my babies are growing up. In the past week I've realized Sport's clothes are too big for the kid sized hangers he has. He needs man size hangers now! Two weeks ago he tried on size 8 pants at the mall. I bought him a couple of pair this weekend and they're already too short! Spice decided yesterday she was ready to take the training wheels off of her bike and while she's not ready to go tooling around the driveway on just two wheels yet, she did a great job for her first time out. She also rode a horse for the first time Friday.
I am thankful for...healthy, growing kids.
From the learning rooms...We are continuing our studies of the 13 colonies. We've been enjoying the Along the American History Trail lesson plans posted at Serendipity and all of the fun colonial days activities. Today we're going to paint stenciled notecards.
From the kitchen...tacos are on the menu for today - a double batch since I'm making dinner for a friend who just had a baby. For the rest of the week, there's Italian basil shrimp with pasta, pizza, cheese tortellini with garlic and mushrooms, and Mexican casserole. For lunch it's Muffin Tin Monday! I don't usually stick with the themes though. That would require actually planning ahead.
I am creating...lists of things to do this week, this month, next month...
I am Kohl's later to return the aforementioned pants I bought for Sport. Tonight I'll be working in the church office while Sport has his religion class, then we're off to our first Cub Scout meeting of the new school year.
I am reading...The Long Snapper by Jeffrey Marx, a story about one of my all time favorite LSU football players and his improbable return to football and, ultimately, the Super Bowl.
I am hoping...for family harmony in our homeschool this week. We had a few rough days last week.
I am hearing...the kids talk about and sing one of their "favorite songs" while they are supposed to be working quietly!
Around the house...laundry to be put away (as usual), too many books piled on the coffee table, and a pile of clothes and toys waiting to be priced for a consignment sale I'm participating in this week.
One of my favorite things... a good book.
A few plans for the rest of the week: church and Cub Scouts tonight, homeschool enrichment classes and a playdate tomorrow, consignment sale shopping Thursday (YIPEE)!
Here is picture thought I am sharing...

We had our first not-so-hot day in a long time yesterday so naturally my thoughts turned to two of my favorite things about fall: pumpkin patches and football (more on that next week).

To read more daybook thoughts head over to Peggy's blog.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Make Life Easier

When we moved from our one level ranch house to our current home, the downfalls of living in a two story house with kids quickly became apparent. Can't tell you how many times we were on our way out the door only to realize the kids didn't have shoes on, hadn't brushed their teeth, hadn't done a thing to their hair or even worse, all of the above. Sending them back upstairs to take care of one or all of these issues was a huge time waster. Couple that with the fact that my kids refuse to go upstairs alone because aliens or some other strange creatures might be waiting for them, and we were doomed to be late for everything. It was obvious we needed help. First up, I placed extra toothbrushes for Sport and Spice in our downstairs half-bath, along with toothpaste, a cup for rinsing, and a comb for last minute dos. This saved a lot of time. We still had the shoe problem. This one was solved inadvertently after I got tired of finding shoes in every room of the house. I bought a basket to corral all the wayward shoes and placed it near the garage door. Shoes found downstairs get tossed in the basket. It didn't take long to realize this solved the problem of always having to run upstairs for shoes. Now the kids just grab a pair out of the basket and we can be on our way.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Friendly Reunion

When we moved to Georgia I was five months pregnant with my first child, an only child myself who never had any intention of moving away from home. All of my family was in Louisiana, as well as Hubby's, and many of my friends were people I'd know since elementary school. But opportunity came a knocking (for Hubby at least) so I packed up and left Louisiana - the only home I'd ever known. It wasn't easy and for the first few years I was in denial...I refused to call Georgia home and I dreamed of the day we'd return to our real home.
By chance, a good friend of mine from college had a sister in the Atlanta area who attended the same church we had joined. He came to town for Thanksgiving, just a few weeks after our big move, and hooked us up. I believe his sister's first words to me were, "You're going to want to join the mom's group." The church had a group of stay-home moms who met weekly for playdates, field trips, and everyone's favorite, Mom's Night Out. Being new to the whole game of motherhood and staying home, I of course followed her instructions. What wonderful advice that turned out to be. I often say those moms saved my life! As if making the adjustment to motherhood wasn't enough, or going from working girl to clueless homemaker, I knew absolutely no one (with the exception of Hubby and newborn Sport) in my new surroundings. I lived for our weekly Wednesday get-togethers and was a regular long before Sport was old enough to actually participate. These women were my lifeline. When I had surgery and later a miscarriage, these were the women who fed my family and took care of my son when I couldn't. It was an experienced mother of three who gave Sport his first solid food - a graham cracker stick - when I was too scared to try. Leading up to the day Spice was born so many of them were on stand-by, ready and willing to take a phone call in the middle of the night and stay with Sport while Hubby and I headed off to the hospital - no small commitment considering Spice was born just two days after Christmas! In the days after Spice's birth they once again fed us and gave Sport a place to go that was much more fun than sitting home watching mom nurse a new baby. Life was good.
Then the unthinkable happened...our babies began to grow up and head off to school and one by one we moved into new homes, new churches, and new directions.
We tried to keep in touch, but with this kid at soccer practice and that kid at got hard. Table reservations for our monthly night out slowly dwindled from 12 or more to eight, then four, sometimes only two and sadly at times even none. There've been the occasional e-mails and phone calls with pledges to "get together soon" and always the annual Christmas card photos that leave you scratching your head and wondering where the years have gone when you stare at the older and wiser faces of children you still remember as toddlers just learning to walk and talk.
Earlier this week, I was so lucky to welcome two of these dear friends into my home for a little "friendly reunion." C and I keep in touch fairly regularly. Up until a couple of years ago we lived just minutes from one other and Sport has always considered her youngest among his best friends. Unfortunately, it hasn't been so easy keeping up with B, but this week, the stars aligned, the Heavens opened up, and for a few short hours (too short) we were able to once again sit around the table and chat while kids climbed trees, ran in circles, played ball, and had a grand old time in general, all around us. I've often lamented to Hubby that no matter how hard I've tried, I've never been able to find friends as wonderful as that first group of mothers who so readily welcomed me into their circle when I needed it most. As B left several hours later, she confirmed my complaints, "You know, I've never found another group as good as this one. We were so lucky."
Earlier in the day, looking out at the kids piled around two tables on our deck eating lunch I couldn't help but flashback to snack time during the old days when chubby little hands and faces dug into more toddler friendly fare, and I couldn't help but think of the old adage, “Make new friends, but keep the old; one is silver and the other is gold.”
Do you have any "golden" friends you've been missing? If so, call them up make plans to catch up, real plans. It'll do your heart good.