It's been a few days since I've been able to write, so I had to take a scroll back through facebook to see what little things have been going on the last bit. I forget if I don't write them down. I would say facebook is like my little jotter notebook and the blog is the expanded story form....unless I'm in a hurry, then I just copy/paste from facebook. :)
So let's see....
Our van and Alero have both finally bitten the dust. On the way to church last week for the Lord's Supper, the van performed it's dying moments, it's last gasping breaths for life. Four or five false stops on the way to church and then it slid into the church parking lot for the last time. It must have died happy, because church was its favorite place to be. We called the junk towtruck to haul off the van from church and the alero from Richard's work on the same day. Goodbye, faithful cars! Praise the Lord Richard had the foresight to buy another car just before that seated 7 passengers, or we'd have been sunk. So, we are now a one car family, which is the economical thing to do right now anyway.
I have to say, though, I'm having a bit of an adjustment not being able to 'hop in the van' and run errands. It is good: it provides a little more stability for school and housework. But by Saturday, I have cabin fever. This past Saturday evening I couldn't stand it anymore. I called my friend at 8:30 pm and said, "You wanna go for coffee?Please?" After a relaxing visit to the Good Earth coffeeshop down the street, I felt much better and was able to return home a sane woman. It's not like I can't go anywhere during the week evenings...it's just that Richard's been so sick lately that he only has strength to go to work and come home and go to bed, and it's not like we have a nanny to watch the kids while I 'run off somewhere'. I do have to be a responsible person. :D So Saturday I waited until the kids were in bed and Richard was well enough to oversee and then I had myself a coffee break.
I have spent the last couple of weeks learning how to drive all over again...stickshift. I think I'm finally getting the hang of it. I have driven myself and the kids to church alone twice now. My previously mentioned coffee friend is also my 'driving instructor'. You would think that with my husband being a car guy that he would be the natural one to teach me. NOT the case. He and I lasted 15 minutes together. His instructions sounded as understandable as Klingon to me, but all the while I could feel him being nervous that I was going to burn the clutch out of his new car, Lol. We were simply not connecting....so he suggested that I ask my friend. She was more than happy to help. She took me out to a deserted parking lot and used girl terms. I heard things like "tap, tap, tap" and "teeter-totter" and my Mommy brain was able to compute this into driving the car. To start moving in first gear from a complete stop, I need to teeter-totter between the clutch and accelerator-makes perfect sense! :D Richard telling me about the engine "dropping" sounded like it was going to fall out of the car! (I'm not a car person, can you tell, but I'm very familiar with the playground.) So lately I've been driving more and more on my own. Sunday, my friend rode with me while I drove to nursing home services, following the other cars from church also going there. Well, their route led me to a stoplight on an uphill....oh, goodie! we hadn't done this before. I went to go forward on green-and rolled backward, causing the car behind me to honk in panic right before I hit them! What was that? I hadn't experienced a hill before. :) She tried to tell me what to do, but I was so flustered I couldn't go anywhere. Everyone just kept coming right up behind me, even with my hazard lights on. In short, we stalled traffic for ten minutes and ended up doing a Chinese fire drill so she could get us off the hill. I would've been happy not to drive anymore that day, but she forced me back into the driver's seat for the ride home.
Hmmm...what else? Richard's wellbeing goes up and down daily. One day he seems almost his normal self, the next, he's in pain with no energy. He has an appointment for an extensive check at the end of the month. But in the mean time I am scheduling him in to start seeing a naturopath. We are hoping we can help heal his body as naturally as possible..in essence, help his body heal itself-with God's help, of course. He's the Great Physician! :) Richard is too young and energetic(normally) to be taken out with health problems now.
And....life with the kids: they have taken their turns with little coughs and fevers and sore throats, but nothing seems to be turning into anything serious. Staying away from Playland may be a big part---Germ City. :( There were a couple days last week that we took off school for sick days. One day, it was supposed to be a 'sick day'. But all of a sudden, while Gabe was taking a nap, James, Grace, and Jane all crowded around my desk asking to 'do school'-it makes them feel important to call it 'school' like their big brother. :) I didn't have a plan. We just started coloring and talking and the following list became our morning:
God made fish and bunnies;
Fish don't have hands, they have fins(I showed them how fishies swim with their fins and tails. They enjoyed 'swimming' like the fishies);
Jesus loves me ALL the time: when I get dressed and when I eat breakfast...;
God cares about me;
He makes pretty flowers and trees to enjoy;
Robin's eggs are blue;
God made LOTS of egg colors-blue, white, brown, & green;
Monkeys have tails;
No, Curious George doesn't have a tail, because he's an ape;
Counting to 10;
The colors Red and Orange;
Laugh-a-Lot Bear is a girl, not a boy, sorry, Gracie, my mistake!
Circle the biggest, Cross off the smallest;
Color, color, color;
Play an ABC matching puzzle game
Sing the ABC song;
Learn to take turns;
Share the coloring table;
Screaming gets you sent to your room, but being sweet lets you play!
It turned out to be a very pleasant morning.
Last night, I went to say goodnight to Gracie. She said, " 'Nuggle with me, Mama!" and held out her arms. She was so very sleepy. She pulled my face close. "You're my Princess Mama!" Aww! "You're my Princess Gracie!" I said. She can be so sweet.
Another funny snuggle story: I was snuggling Jane-Jane down in her bed for her nap. She finally stopped protesting naptime and relaxed in my arms, so I whispered in her ear, "Mommy loves you. You are Mommy's little baby; you will always be my baby." With her eyes closed, she sleepily murmured, "I'm gorgeous." Lol-If you could hear her say it, it would crack you up-she says it like a Southern belle: "Ah'm Baby Go'geous!" Don't worry, she's not really conceited: it's just matter of fact. Mommy told me I'm gorgeous, so I just am! It's because she likes the sound of that word. Beautiful, adorable, lovely, pretty.....nah--gorgeous? yes. That used to be one of my favorite words when I was a little girl too. Pollyanna said it and just about everything Pollyanna did was what I wanted to do! :)
I don't know if this makes me a bad mom...???...:D:D:D....but the other day the girls were having 'coffee' with me. Seriously, only like a tablespoon of coffee fits into their tiny teapot, and we filled up their cream and sugar pots, and the girls sat down at their tiny table. Gracie did the honors and 'poured'. I wished I had the camera!
James had his moments this week too. He saw me looking at facebook posts of people from church with some photos and exclaimed, "Mommy! You have CHURCH on da COMPUTER?! Dat is SO neat!"
The poor little guy wasn't feeling so hot Tuesday, with some sniffles and a headache. After I gave him some Tylenol, he crawled up on my lap in the rocking chair. While I rocked, he fell asleep with one hand in mine and his other hand on my face. So sweet....I actually found a poem on Pinterest that reminded me of this:
TWO AND A HALF
Hold him a little longer
Rock him a little more
Tell him another story
(You've only told him four)
Let him sleep on your shoulder
Rejoice in his happy smile
He is only two and a half
For such a little while
Whether 3 1/2 like James, or 2 1/2 like Grace, or 1 1/2 like Jane....or even 8 yrs old like Gabe, this poem is so very true!
Speaking of Baby Jane, she sure gave us a scare Sunday night! Sunday afternoon, we all went for a rest, Richard & I in our room, and all four kids snuggled securely in the room next to us watching a movie. Nice and close. We went to get the kids ready awhile later to go back to church....and we couldn't find Jane! Casual "Have you seen Jane?" turned into urgent "I'll go see if she slipped downstairs" to panicked "Look to see if she crawled under the stairs and got stuck in the suitcases!" We literally turned our house upside down, all three floors, looking for her. We looked in the garage, in the car(did we forget to unbuckle her when we got home because she was sleeping quietly?--no, she for sure was right there in the room with the kids watching the movie). I nauseously checked to see if she fell out the one open window(heaven forbid). She doesn't know how to open ANY of the doors-how did she escape?....shudder--was she stolen?....all these thoughts went through our panicked minds. I pulled on boots to go running down the street, but before I roused the neighborhood to help me look, I ran upstairs to the movie room to do one last check. We'd checked everywhere in there, even under the bed, but just to be sure.....I got right down on my tummy and let my eyes focus under the bed. There, waayyyy under the bed, surrounded by dust bunnies and stray toys, my baby girl was laying on her tummy, fast asleep-not even aware that she was "lost"! I almost cried with relief, obviously very shaken up. She has slid under the bed, committed a poopie diaper(lol!), and fallen asleep. I don't know if she got stuck or just got tired, but she was perfectly alright. We had actually gotten scared to the point of calling Pastor at church, and he had a quick prayer meeting with those at church for her. That was really scary! Praise the Lord none of those horrid scenarios were the case!
Gabriel is starting to do really well in school. He's at the stage where he's having to learn how to write paragraphs and put his thoughts down on paper. And they are quite often funny, as is his spelling. Yesterday, he had to pretend to be an object in the room and write a paragraph of what 'it' might write in it's journal, life through it's eyes. He decided to be a picture on the shelf. Here's what "It" wrote:
"Gabe was sing JESUS Luves me on Momday. Jamse was Playing ONO ON WENS-
day With TRISTEN.
Grace was Toking With hr Fend Delilah To go on a piknk
Delilah sed YES & Grace & Delilah did"
He is learning all about Vikings and Inuit(Eskimos) in school. He really enjoys learning about people and finding them on our new globe(compliments of Auntie Rochelle!). Animals are his strongest point. He loves wildlife. He'll sit there and watch National Geographic videos for hours. Another thing that I let him have freedom with is his science experiment kit. He catches on to his science concepts quick as a wink. He hates math but loves science. Tinkering around with his science kit also keeps him busy for hours. I have taken to teaching him the concepts out of the books, but handing over the 'science guy' dvd and experiment box to him to do alone. He seems to like being given that 'hands on' freedom, and he does great!
Well, all of my children are awake now. I was up early to have breakfast with Richard. It was hard to initially climb out of bed, but I'm so glad I did. Richard and I got to enjoy the quiet and some prayer together before the kids were up. It pains me to see him hurting so and yet having to go off to work. My heart goes with him in prayer. He is such a good man and I'm privileged to be his wife. :)
I'm off to make some more soup, catch up on housework, study with Gabe, and somewhere in there take a nap, cause I'm getting sleepy!