23 June 2014

Mama's Secret Weapons.

You may or may not know that I totally rock this mothering thing. Ha, riiiiiight. I'm usually a mess of sweat and yelling, but there are several ways I retain a little normal in the middle of the chaos.

Here's my trick. I wake up in the morning and eat a fiber one chocolate chip cookie bar. If I can start the day with a cookie, it's all okay. Then it's kid music on the iPad all morning. It's all for the kids! Raffi, Fred Penner, Backyardigans, Schoolhouse Rock, we go all out. Rock. And. Roll. Anything for the kids, right?

And then I take my day back.

Just when I think I can't take another second, right around 3:30, I put the ipad on the kitchen counter, put my Bluetooth headphones around my neck and let my hair down to cover the evidence. I turn on whatever I want and the sounds of an adult world fills my ears. I then smile and nod at the children as if I'm totally present, all the while half-listening to my tv and movie friends carry on with their pretend lives, or listen to music on Spotify. The kids have no idea and my sanity is once again preserved. I can walk the entire house without letting on or interrupting my "me time," getting things done and still enjoying the afternoon.

Our little secret. Bluetooth has changed my liiiiiiiife.

The days of tiny waistbands.

When I was 16, and even as young as twelve, maybe even as young as six, five...I was old. I wasn't a "fun" kid. I wasn't really a very fun adolescent, and I definitely wasn't a fun teenager. I wouldn't say I've gotten "more fun," but now my peers are tired enough to behave like I do, and that's nice. No one asks us to stay out unreasonably late, because they all go to bed at decent hour. No one expects us to get drunk when we get together because everyone has a child (or five) to answer to in the morning. It's pure bliss. It's not that I have arrived, but that everyone else has caught up. Now we can all just be normal adults and I don't have to spend so much time wondering why I lack the motivation or interest to act like the rest of them. 

Katherine and I met in college and we might as well have been meeting at bridge club. We were born to be old and crabby together. We did try to drink several times, but we always just ended up falling asleep. Maybe if we'd been wearing our afghans and slippers and drinking elderberry wine we'd have had more success. There is nothing nicer than having a friend who shakes her head as much as you do. We have plenty of fun, but most of that fun is talking about our bunions and arthritis. 

A couple of my children are like Andrew and I in this way. Molly prefers to talk to herself, probably because Molly is the one person who can answer Molly in the appropriate manner. Miles just sits and wears an expression that says, "can't we all just watch the clouds roll by and drink root beer with our suspenders down?" I know, child, I know...I feel for them. I just hope to raise kids who are confident enough to be who they are even when the world expects them to be someone else. I wasted so much time trying to be someone I wasn't just because there were so few people like me. I wish I'd known better and spent those years just enjoying me. And being a size four.

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to pluck my chin hairs and flip my pork chops.

21 June 2014

There was a crooked house.

We've been scraping and sanding all day. He makes it fun. The boys shuffle around in the dust with their little screwdrivers and hammers, banging on the walls and pointing at everything we're doing. 

Nothing in this life is perfect, and having the imperfection of an old fixer-upper in my constant sight is a comfort. It we can love this old house with all of it's crooked windows and cracked floors, we can love each other with all of those imperfections and pieces of ourselves that we just can't get perfect. It keeps the cold and rain out, and that's what we do for one another. Imperfect people in an imperfect house in an imperfect world. We patiently scrape, level, repaint, envision and dream, hoping that our small improvements will make this place "us." It's not perfect, but it's perfect for us. We're not perfect people, but we're perfect for each other. Just like there is nothing so nice as coming home, there is nothing so nice as coming home to him at the end of a long day. The piece of his chest where my head fits perfectly, fits better every year, and when we cuddle up to watch a movie or just talk about the day, our arms and legs know where they belong. 

This house becomes ours more and more as the years pass, and I don't know what our family would be without this wonderful place we've settled. Our home is a crooked house, but it fits us perfectly. 

20 June 2014

I think I have blogger's block.

I used to think people wanted to hear what I have to say. Now I think people just want to hear themselves talk, rather than listen to me,so I haven't blogged much. I feel like I'm all out of things to say. Every day is very much like the last around here. Can't complain about that, right? 

Still homeschooling, going well. 

Still raising five kids, going well. 

Still married, going well. 

Still Catholic, going well. 

Still on meds, going well. 

See? It's just all...the same. And it's a very happy "same," don't get me wrong. We have no plans for the summer, like at ALL. I'm trying to keep the kids from watching too much tv, but it's hard when it's so hot outside! We're planning to take the month of August off, since it's going to be a month of adjustment on several fronts. We have two weeks in front of us with absolutely nothing planned, which is nice, but a little daunting, trying to keep them all busy. 

We're trying to get the floors finished by the time Nina and Lil get here at the end of July, but we're so lazy and we really just want to lie around and watch tv at night...it that bad? Probably. I do have a tiny list of things to get done this weekend, but nothing major. If we can get the girls' room scraped, filled and sanded, we can talk about moving on to painting and sealing. Andrew wants me to do flowers in their room, but the thought has me a little...nauseous. I'm thinking glitter. Can we do glitter floors? That would be so amazing. And then it's on to the nursery and the hallway. If I can have it all done by July 20th, that'll give me time to get it all together before the ladies arrive. 

I'm sorry this wasn't a funny post. Life is so funny with all these short people around, too. I'll think of something funny and relay it to you as soon as I possibly can. 

Now, it's time for me to shower. I try to get that done by four so that my hair is dry by the time andrew gets home. That way he thinks I actually showered that morning. Gotta keep up appearances and all that, right? And it's the weekend in just a few hours. Ain't nobody starting the weekend smelling like this!

18 June 2014

As He wills it.

As my hair continues to fall out, every time I pull out another handful of hair, I just send up, "Thy will be done, Thy will be done," over and over and over. How can the will of God be wrong? Thy will be done. Sometimes I really don't believe that I want His will to be done, but I say it anyway. The only times I've been unhappy in my life is when I've been separated from the will of the Father. Yes, seeing all that hair falling out makes me unhappy, but it's a pretty superficial thing, right? There is no physical pain, only vanity. As He wills it. As He wills it. His will is perfect. His will is perfect.

So I did what anyone would do. By adding something different to my hair, it's easier to take it all less seriously. If I'm willing to dye it purple, losing it seems far less difficult. It's not really "my" hair if I don't recognize it so easily, is it? And it's much more fun seeing red and purple and black hair stuck to the wall of the shower than boring old brown. Adding some fun removes some pain. 

Last night as I was getting ready for bed, some very hurtful things came across in a message. This person has a history of hurtful things, so it wasn't too surprising. Thankfully, I recognized it for what it was. "Blessed are you who suffer persecution because of Me." Here I am submitting myself to the will of God as gracefully as possible, and up pops another reason to separates myself from Him. All I wanted to do was unload and absolutely go batty on this person. So I did what any person submitting to the will of God would do. I swallowed my tears, buried my pride and did the graceful thing. 

I extended a dinner invitation. 

As He wills it. 

15 June 2014

Best Daddy Ever. flipagram made with @flipagram Music: American Authors - Best Day of My Life #flipagram http://flipagram.com/f/Dn5n9ImkXB

14 June 2014


A wonderful baptism, a big spider, a gorgeous wedding, some fancy glasses, plastic corn and a super fun picnic. All good, totally exhausting, kids were angels, all knocked out now. Perfection.

08 June 2014

My hair is falling out.

There is really no nice way to say it. I knew this could happen, but I guess I chose colon over hair. So I'm not really complaining. I'm just putting it out there. I need to shove it out into the world so that I don't have to say it out loud.

You probably wouldn't notice a difference, if you ran into me on the street. It's not falling out in clumps. It's thinning, gradually, but it's a drastic difference for me. I was blessed with amazing hair. I wasn't blessed with many amazing physical attributes. Short torso, short legs, curves like Marilyn in a world of Kates. I work it, no biggie.

But my hair?! When I shower it comes out in handfuls. Handfuls! Ack! It's the infusions, yes, and there is really no way to know just how thin it will get. I'm not sure I'll lose it all. I may just have thin hair. That would be better than totally bald, right?

I'll keep you updated. I'd ask for prayers, but really? Prayers to the Patron of Vain Housewives Whose Hair May Be Thinning or Falling Out Completely?

The good news is, my sense of humor is solidly intact and I love hats.