Thursday, July 8, 2010

Seven Quick Takes



This weekend is the big birthday weekend for a brand new three-year-old! Ezra has walked around all week announcing his new status to everyone who will listen. Grocery store? Library? *Everyone* knows how old this boy is!


We're also celebrating an upcoming birth this weekend My sister-in-law A is due at the end of the month with her first child, a little boy. We're having a little get together to celebrate and help her prepare for his arrival with a bit of advise from the sisters who have been here before. I've been knitting for this much anticipated little one, and I only have a few little finishing details left before the weekend.


I think I can safely say that I'm organized for our official Kindergarten venture. We bought binders earlier this week for our alphabet notebooks and a notebook for our math journal. There's a daily plan in place that gives us the structure Ender needs but a lot of room to explore. I'll share a little bit here after we get into a rhythm and see how the plan works.


I love Netflix streaming. When I was a kid we watched very very little television and movies were basically forbidden. A lot of movies that people consider classics are movies I know of but have never seen. Superman is in constant awe of the movies I've never seen and takes great joy in introducing me to the movies of our youth.  Last night I watched Independence Day for the first time, a few nights before that I saw the original Karate Kid. I have to say- it's really funny when you know all the popular phrases that have become part of our culture and then you see the original source. The whole "wax on, wax off" thing? I finally know exactly what that is. Superman has made it his personal mission to catch me up on all the pop culture stuff I missed as a kid.


I started to work on a Christmas list for this year. I'm trying to get an early start on the handmades for Christmas. Because my family is so large we draw names on that side of the family, so we will have 2 to knit for. I'm hoping to cheat a little and draw my brother-in-law since I already found the perfect hat to knit for him. Perhaps I can talk whoever is in charge of the name drawing thing into just giving me the right name . . .

To knit for: all of my boys, my mother-in-law, (hopefully) my brother-in-law and perhaps a few little cousins- we'll have 3 little ones besides my boys by Christmas.


I've also spent a bit of time this week looking for good hat patterns for Superman and the boys for this fall. For some reason I feel like I need to get them done before September even though we don't usually have cool enough weather to need hats and mittens until January. I'm going to experiment with the boys' mittens this time around and see what happens, and I think I may have found a hat that Ender will really like. Now just to find one for Ezra . . .


Ender is back to swimming lessons on Monday for a few weeks. He's getting a little braver each time he goes, and he made a lot of progress with getting over some of his fears last weekend. We were able to be in the pool almost every day. I'm hoping the progress continues in his class these next few weeks.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


I’m the same now as I was when I was 15.

Except for the fact that my whole life is completely different from then, essentially I am exactly what I was at 15. I needed time to myself and room to follow the interests I had. I was a sophomore, homeschooling in the morning hours, spending the afternoons practicing the 3 instruments I played, then performing or rehearsing several evenings per week. Saturdays were spent all day in rehearsals. I was already developing a career at that young age.

I spent my non-musical time writing stories, writing articles, journaling- writing just to write. In fact, I found myself writing “I wish I had something really interesting to write just because I really feel like writing right now” in my journal more than once as a teenager. I wanted to write for writing’s sake.
I loved it all.

I miss that life.
There isn’t anything that could make me trade what I have now for what I had 14 years ago.
My creative pursuits have since shifted to crafting. Music is still my career, but I don’t perform anymore, and I fill that need for creation with knitting and composing for my music students.

In my “days off” lately I’ve been writing again. As in real writing, the kind of writing I did before I had kids and thought I was too busy to take the time to write since then. Real writing as in words that mean something, rather than the hastily written lists that have become my standby lately.

It was while I was writing over the weekend that I realized just how much I have not changed in all this time. I still need exactly the same things- time to myself and room to explore my interests- and that hasn’t been happening for the last year or so. The last few weeks have been like waking up for the first time in a few years, looking around and thinking, “how did I get here?”
Hence, lots of prayer.
Big changes, come my way.
I very thoroughly believe that you have to be the one to make the changes you want in your life, and just as firmly I believe that if you are willing to do the work there isn’t much out there that is unattainable.
I’m working.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

A Certain Mama

Have I ever told you that I'm "Mama" here? I am never referred to as Mom or Mommy or Mother- always Mama, and we've kept it that way quite intentionally ever since the first time Ender managed to put those sounds together for the first time.

I will probably mourn a little bit when one of my boys calls me Mom, not because it's wrong or anything, but because I personally find the name Mama so endearing. The sound of that word makes me smile in my heart every single time I hear it. Yes, even when someone is yelling for me to "come quick" or something of that nature.

I've been reading as part of this month's devotions through an older John Piper book- Don't Waste Your Life. I'm not done with it yet, but I need to write about it today. Piper is one of those fellows that I have to read slowly, just a few pages at a time, then read those pages again before I can think on them and pray. I've been praying for big changes in our family life, or as our pastor would say, God-sized changes. I'm depending on God to do the things He says He will do.

It is the scariest step forward I have ever taken.


I am quiet here for a few reasons. First is sheerly practical- we've had either limited or no internet access for most of this month. As these kinds of things go, it's been both good and bad for us. There's been some frustration over a few online services we depend on (like online access to my library account and trusty netflix streaming to help us through our 80's movie classics quest!) but there has also been an awful lot of nights spent sitting out on the deck after little boys are in bed, and reading out loud to each other for the first time in a long time.

The second reason has to do with that Piper book. I  have realized in the reading of this book that I'm a certain kind of Mama  and I won't ever follow the path other people expect me to go along. This book has freed me of so many of my "am I a good mother/wife/sister/daughter" worries because I know without a doubt now that I should live my life fully and not look back. Looking back, changing, or fitting to the expectations of others would mean wasting my life.

So I've been living life with my boys. Being very present, leaving the inspiration behind and doing whatever it is we are inspired to do, drinking wine in the evening on the deck with my husband, talking about 10 years together coming up in just a few short weeks, and most importantly- not being the mama that stands back and takes the pictures. I've been in the middle of it all. Things haven't been documented, but I was there, doing it with them.

Ezra's first boat ride

Helping Ender learn to blow bubbles out of his nose in the pool.

The boys swimming in a lake for the first time


Listening to Ender read Hop on Pop one silly word at a time

Praying with my husband for a way to make the life we want for our boys a reality, planning to take that next step forward . . .

Camping under the stars in a place you can actually see stars (unlike our middle-of-the-city home).


I do have things to share here. We've been *very* busy. But I'm letting go of the guilt over

  • not posting daily lately

  • not always having pictures to share

  • Not being like everyone else.


I'm much more interesting on my own.
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