|MG grew very fond of horses while at camp|
Rather that try to bite off such a large update, I'm merely going to start with today and go from there. As we commence, I'll try to fit in bits and pieces from the last few weeks.
I will say that, while fun, our most recent days have also been stressful ones. A few of our children have been going through transitional phases simultaneously, making GG and my life somewhat of a stressful moment-to-moment sitcom. Parenting is no joke, people. I am living that mantra and then some as GG and I sort through issues and attempt to steer our crew on the straight and narrow. Tough stuff!! Of all the kids, our J seems to be going through the roughest spell. He is defiant, edgy, and downright mean, at times. We are praying intensely for him and hoping the start of school in the next week will mean a return to more structure, better bedtimes and more sleep, and *hopefully* better resulting behavior! Add in a feisty, nap-deprived 3yo and a feisty, strong-willed 8yo (not naming names, of course! ;) and we are at our limits. So if you happen to think of our family, please humbly add us to your prayers. We would be so grateful.
Above all, we know we are blessed beyond measure with everything. Bumps in the road are inevitable. We just need to remember to reach for His hand when we stumble. Going it on our own is never the right solution.
But back to today... We attended Mass as a family this morning. I dropped the girls off in the nursery where we discovered MG had no underpants. lol. What??? Had she taken them off? Did I put any on? The answer is still a mystery, but thankfully we remedied the situation quickly with an extra diaper. Whew! ;) Thanks to my friend and blog reader, Shannon, for laughing through that one with me!!
Later at Mass, GG and I were less than impressed by our three lazy, sleep-deprived sons. They were barely going through the motions and needed a ton of prompting for simple standing/sitting/participating. No way, Jose!!! So, how do you remedy laziness? Why, give them naps, of course! GG was on it. After church there wasn't time to get donuts, there wasn't energy to eat them, there wasn't ANY time for anything because boys were just too tired. We had to get home for naps!! It was natural consequences at its finest. When we arrived home, the boys had to go straight to bed and stay there until we called them down. No one ever fell asleep, but you better believe we left them there for over an hour!! They were so relieved when we let them come out. ;)
Meanwhile, the girls played and GG and I enjoyed a quiet Sunday brunch together. It was lovely. And so encouraging. We were having a parental pep talk, lifting up the other on this parental journey. We've had to have a few of those lately. It was our second pep talk in 24 hours. Last night was my turn for despair, but thankfully GG was there to offer words of hope and encouragement. When every turn feels like a failure, you start to take it personally--"Is it me? How can I work so hard and see so little fruit??" Thankfully we are committed to the marathon journey and are chalking this up to end-of-summer sleep deprivation (big time!), lack of schedules/structure, and need for change. School starts in 2 days, so we're hoping to snap out of this conundrum soon. Spaces in our togetherness are more important than ever...
The good news is this afternoon played out beautifully. The boys finished summer reading reports, played the piano, tinkered with Mine Craft, and squirreled around playing a game with swords and prisoners. The girls had a tea party, read stories, tinkered on their own... GG enjoyed a conversation with a good friend and finished his night choosing his fantasy football team. And I, well, I filled in the gaps while sipping coffee and relishing time with the family. I also had the chance to tutor a student in the midst.
We finished with kids in bed early, reading aloud from a biography of Amelia Earhart, prayer, and snuggles all around. Of course with a lot of correction in-between. ;)
Keepin' it real.
Life is good. God is better.