From The Archives: October 21, 2011

Packing

I seriously laughed out loud as I reread this one! Thanks Peter!

Packing and the Teenage Male

I spent a goodly part of one week helping Peter pack for his 10 day trip to Teen Pact Venture in Tennessee.

With 5 days on the road there and back and another 5 days at camp – it seemed to me that he needed a little guidance.

I helped him find more jeans, a suit coat, dress slacks, a outfit for golf and raided his dad’s t-shirts to make sure he had enough.

I carefully counted and folded and made nice piles for him.

I even bought him new underwear.

All the while there was this annoying little thought that kept coming back – “Why am I doing this? Peter is a teenage boy who has been known to wear the same clothes for days at time…”

But the mother in me couldn’t let it go.

I was even kinda proud as he drove off on his adventure because I knew that he was prepared.

It didn’t last long.

I was brought back to reality within minutes of picking him up after his return trip.

He looked good and was sharing story after story of his time away – laughing and joking with his siblings.

Finally the mother in me just couldn’t wait any longer – so I asked him, “How did your clothes work out? Did you have enough of everything?”

“Well”, he responded, “I basically wore these jeans pretty much all week.”

(His sisters slide further away from him on the van seat.)

“What!” (I’m remembering all those trips up and down the attic stairs digging through his winter clothes to find enough jeans) “How about t-shirts? Did you have enough t-shirts?”

“I had way too many – I really only needed a couple.”

“A couple!” (You were gone 10 days! What about my neat little piles of carefully folded and counted shirts?!)

“Oh dear. What about your underwear? Did you have enough… No! Stop! Don’t answer that. I really don’t want to know.”

Sometimes ignorance is bliss.

Next time I’ll let him pack himself. ūüôā

Medal Worthy

I survived July.

That should get a medal.

I will admit to a feeling of relief when I could move the calendar page to August.

And speaking of medal worthy –

Nathan got his driver’s license last week. Our fifth and last child is officially a driver. We survived years of parallel parking lessons, endless white knuckle practice drives, ¬†and worrisome first solo trips.

And Рdrum roll Рthis is the only time that we showed up at the courthouse with ALL the necessary paperwork and documents the first time!

I mentioned that fact to the Driver’s licence¬†guy, who, incidentally, was the same one to issue all five¬†learner’s permits and all five driver’s licenses through-out the years.

I asked if they gave out medals for that.

His reply, “Not usually. maybe a pat-on-the back.”

I’ll take it.

We also picked all the peaches before the coons got them!

I even thought about getting them in the freezer!

I’ve also thought about the fact that school¬†should start soon.

And that I should probably put away all the VBS things that are sitting in piles in the basement.

And that the garden should be watered.

I can just guess¬†what you’re¬†thinking right now – “Wow, she is really rocking August! Somebody should give her a medal!”

I know, right!

Just wait till September!

 

 

Flying By…

Is it just me or did June fly by?!

Wasn’t Memorial Day just yesterday? And now we’re planning July 4th activities!

I can’t believe we’ve already celebrated Anna’s birthday with presents and family and cheesecake!

¬†“Cheesecake Gobble gobble Cheesecake, Gobble Gobble cheesecake. Cheesecake!”

And Father’s Day.

Which began with a boomerang on the roof, progressed to a kite in the farm pond and ended with bottle rockets and Roman candles.

I’ve spent hours digging out the garden and was surprised to see plants! Real vegetables growing despite the unconventional planting and absolute neglect!

It’s a miracle!

Nate’s band had their first big concert! They did a great job and¬†drew a really nice crowd!

Look at him playing the electric guitar!

And just imagine the great story it will be if they ever get famous and can say their first big concert was on the stage behind Frosty Trete Ice Cream in Bedford, Iowa!

My parents came for the concert and stayed for a visit. We played games, went shopping and had a great auction adventure!

Two of my sisters came for a day! We filled it with talk and laughter and games and shopping.

And eating out. Of course.

I shivered in sweatshirts, sweated in tank tops and huddled in the basement waiting for the storm to pass.

I’ve hung loads of wet laundry in the sunshine and taken them in smelling of fresh air and blue sky.

And¬†was¬†awestruck by the site of billions of fireflies –¬†like twinkle lights bedazzling the sky as far as the eye can see – shining so bright it was hard to see where the stars ended and the fireflies began.

I’ve heard the bobwhite quail,¬†read books, and visited multiple greenhouses.

I’ve laughed at antics of adolescent chickens.

And repeatedly stepped over the baby kitties who have decided to live on the back step.

So much life was lived in the last month!

I¬†guess that’s where June went – in big events, special moments, quiet joys, and the wonder that is found in every day life – if we look for it.

 

Home Hair Cuts

img_0278I¬†am a big proponent of home hair cuts. We’ve done them for years.

They save money and time and generally turn out great – especially when it’s Grandpa giving our young sons¬†military style hair cuts in the shop.

Things get trickier when those little boys¬†become teenagers. They don’t want a hair cut any more – they want a hair style. And¬†Grandpa is smart enough to not touch it.

Me – not so much.

It sounds easy when they say, “Hey mom – could you just take a little off the sides? ”

How hard can it be?

HA.

There’s undercuts and side burns and ears to trim around.

All with an electric trimmer.

They expect me to cut their hair holding a piece of vibrating metal with moving blades on the ends?! While wearing bi-focals?!

Really?!

Do they realize that the difference between perfection and a gaping bald spot is approximately 2.1637 seconds?

Not that I know this from personal experience or that any of my sons have ever, or are even now walking around with gaping bald spots…just hypothetically speaking of course.

A-hem.

Grandpa always tells them the difference between a good haircut and a bad haircut is about a week. ¬†l think it’s longer for bald spots.

I have only drawn blood on one occasion but nothing that required emergency medical attention. He didn’t really need that ear tip anyway.

You would think that after a few bad cuts they would stop asking, but I guess I raised some really frugal kids.

I do make them promise that they will love me no matter what it looks like when I’m done.

Which is good, because quite honestly, you get what you pay for!

 

 

VBS Week

It was VBS week this week.

Many of you are nodding right now. You know exactly what VBS week means.

Busy days, late nights and exhaustion!

But also fun, laughter and blessings.

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I worked with an incredible group of kids!

A crazy bunch of teens who served with their whole hearts and kept me laughing!

13686678_1271086162904327_3183896377120225765_nThey memorized, rehearsed, and brought the characters of the nightly skit to life.

Teaching truth, sharing the gospel, and loving on the kids.

13668948_1270739699605640_8980708736091413003_nGames.

Crafts.

Bible lessons.

Snack time.

I sat back each night and watching God work in and through these servants.

And I was blessed.