Special moments from a special 7th birthday…
When I was waiting to have a baby and couldn’t (either because of circumstance or infertility), I loved hearing other people’s birth stories. I wanted to know all about the poignant, the painful, the gross, the unexpected, and the miraculous.
Even more, I love having a birth story. Miranda’s is a little more “exciting” than Kaity’s.. and the short of it is that seven years ago tonight, our little miracle girl turned completely over in my womb while we watched and didn’t know what we were watching), our first nurse didn’t realize her head wasn’t downward, and five hours after being admitted to the hospital, my first born came via c-section.
It’s not the birth story I wanted, but she is the baby I always wanted. And now she is a little girl growing – growing – growing much too fast, just like our love for her gets bigger every day.
For various reasons, both draining and exhilarating, the first weekend of the school year wore me out.
But this morning…
Oh, this morning:
On the third day of school, the first Monday, we turn to routine, which for us means that when Daddy isn’t out of town, he takes the girls to school. He likes to. (This is reason #EleventyBillionandTen why he is my love, my best friend, and my hero). And quite frankly, I do not enjoy it. The traffic disturbs my calm. The difference this year, today, of course, is that he not only took Randa, but KK too.
I gave extra kisses, and watched them drive away, and closed the door, and leaned on it, and sang a few bars of the “Hallelujah” chorus as I beheld this sight:
That’s right…me, my house, alone. Oh, the plans we had! The things we did!
Right. I did manage to drink an entire cup of coffee while it was mostly warm and watch an episode of Damages (catching up on everything after the first season) while I was in my jammies. Exhilarating, y’all! But while I did that, I also cleaned the kitchen, straightened up the girls’ rooms, changed the sheets on their bunk beds, folded a load of laundry, cleaned my closet, and…
Well, I planned on what I will do with that one hour and fifteen minute time block for the rest of the entire year!
I do have specific plans… I don’t want to be all legalistic about it, but I will try to keep that hour time for me, and not just errands and chores, so hopefully, at least 3 hours a week will be spent on writing and exercising. Both are key to my health!
Other observations from today:
– I actually love Mondays. This has much to do with loving my job, probably for the first time in my adult life…really, really enjoying what I do, and feeling comfortable in it, feeling freedom in it, feeling supported in it.
I still get a lot of questions about what I do: I work on the staff of our beloved church, journey. After the theatre sailed on, I was honored to be asked to remain and work for the church. I’m not totally sure what my title is, but I stopped caring a few months ago :) I work on the website, social media, publications, and communications, and I also assist the Executive Pastor, and sometimes the Generations/Youth pastor and sometimes the Lead Pastors, in all sorts of things…. project managing, resource creating, hunting down 50 pounds of chicken thighs for the village employee luncheon, cleaning a toilet or two, whatever. I model my work after Manny Trillo, a utility player who spent some of his best years on the Chicago Cubs playing short stop and third and outfield and generally rocking Wrigley. If it needs to be done, and I can do it, or find someone to do it, bring it. And Mondays on a church staff, especially after a great day like yesterday, are just fun. Crazy, but fun!
– My children, like me, are night owls. They look like this every morning, yet they hit the ground running off that school bus in the afternoon and they don’t want to go to bed. Help me, Rhonda! Maybe the end of daylight savings will actually help this year…?
– Playdates are the bomb. Dot com. We used to be pros at these. The moves have hurt us. But now, we have enough friends in the neighborhood (and elsewhere) to make these impromptu gatherings happen. It’s a win-win for all of us.
– Homework time can be pretty awesome, at least on the first day. Today I got to observe Randa rocking her addition and doing better in her reading, in spite of the fact that we pretty much blew off formal summer reading for our special brand of practice (signs, brochures, menus…) And KK did not have any formal homework, but she did practice writing her name in proper case and read her first school library book with her Daddy. She is a much more focused and intense learner than Randa, who prefers to sound out words while looking away and dancing. It will be “interesting” to see how this all plays out through the years…
– “Surprise!” We will never be normal people. This was confirmed once again on Saturday, when I was with my future daughter-in-law as she chose a beautiful and far-from-conventional wedding dress for their big day. It was re-confirmed today when I tried to be a Cool Mom. I had 10 minutes from the time I got home from work to get to the bus stop, which is a half mile away. KK really wanted to ride her bike, so I started off at a brisk walk, trying to juggle both the girls’ bikes. I made it to the end of our street before I realized it was awkward…with a side of awkward. So I waved to the guys finishing a new house there and told them I was leaving the bikes for a few minutes, and then proceeded to walk/jog the rest of the way, in my jeans and flip-flops (It was around 88 degrees, which we are calling “fall-like” weather here. To say I was sweating at the end of all this is like saying Miley Cyrus caused a few raised eyebrows last night). Anyway, I made it to the bus stop with 2 minutes to spare, and the girls actually did not complain the whole way home. What was awesome though, is that about 2 blocks from home, the construction workers rounded the corner with our bikes in the trailer, and delivered them to the girls! How cool is that? I love nice people! I will take that over normal any day…
There are benefits to being awkward weirdos. Feel free to ask me about this, or about my feelings on the Ben Affleck as Batman news. Happy 3rd day of school… or happy Monday, whatever the case may be.
The #bestsummerever is quickly transitioning to #readyforfall.
This week is the culmination of sorts. The last of our summer visitors will say goodbye. Paige is packing to leave for her new life in Charlotte (I need to learn how to spell that) with Shabbach Masters’ Commission on Monday. Then we will begin the countdown to having a kindergartner and first grader.
The circle of life... is exhausting.
I was pretty sure my emotions were at bay until about an hour ago, when my husband sent me my new phone number. It seems after 2 years and 3 months in a new state, I am finally able to make the change. With the school and with work, it makes sense.
But seeing that 843-xxx-xxxx started me on a road of nostalgia. After all, I’ve been 708 since 1989, when 312 changed and well…whatever. Chicago has a lot of area codes. We had 3 or 4 in the same household. Myrtle Beach has one, and it’s time to embrace it.
Other things I’m embracing this week~
– Our house is going bye-bye…our house in Illinois, that is. It’s full of details and very typical 2013 economics, but I’m thankful for closing this chapter. It is a house full of beautiful memories… getting married, making a family, bringing our babies home…but it stopped being where I thought of as home a long time ago. HOME is where we are together, my love and me, our kids (as many of them as we can have around!), and whoever is daring enough to call themselves our family. One of the most profound lessons learned for me in the past 2 years and 3 months is that definition of home.
– Our wedding anniversary is Thursday. 10 years, baby, 10 YEARS! Yes, we celebrated this in March, on our marriage anniversary. Yes, we got married twice, so we celebrate twice every year. We will be delaying a big date night a little bit because of all the other stuff going on. But really, every day is a celebration with this guy! I’m thankful for the great health God has blessed him with this year. I’m thankful almost every moment of this #bestsummerever involved him being able to play and bask and enjoy with us!
The week ahead will include scurried calls to update the phone number, turn summer hair into back-to-school hair, find the perfect backpacks, cook an awesome steak-and-fettuccine-alfredo-farewell-dinner, soak in some more free summer movies, find a babysitter to keep on retainer, and…get me to the beach.
These faces make it easy to have a blast, even when the boat rocks or the waves take us by surprise.
Lots of mixes metaphors here. I’m on medicine (for just a few days, thankfully) that makes my heart beat fast…and my emotions are trying to keep up with all the crazy change, again.
Stay happy, friends. Summer isn’t over yet!
I love the social media trend of “Throwback Thursday.” Usually, rather than trying to find time to scan old pictures for uploading, it sends me Googling through my own online presence for what was just a few years ago.
Since our ventures in business and ministry, our moves, and our small children makes it seem like our lives change dramatically all the time, finding stark differences in recent history is not hard…
These two little girls existed in 2009. They are so OLD now in comparison to four years ago…
Also in 2009, they embraced The Sound of Music. This is 3 year old Miranda dancing and singing in the backyard as Maria Von Trapp. They were obsessed with the movie and the songs. I still am!
2009 was also full-on HOME OFFICE mode in our house as we prepared for the first Branson Gospel Music Convention. KK was newly two. She still likes to “work” at my desk (even though we got her one of her own). She will be a CEO, perhaps of the world, and look spectacular while doing so!
Shifting gears completely, today I am switching the website of The Grand Theatre to forward directly to our church website. The sun has set on The Grand. I have gone through my mourning period into one of peace and relief. It was a wonderful season, a wonderful set of little dreams come true in some of the concerts Rod and I got to promote together, a wonderful chance to work the family-friendly entertainment world, … and know that while it has many wonderful points, it’s probably not for me. My mind might be for business, but my heart is for relationship, and Jerry McGuire I am not. I am so grateful for the opportunities we had at The Grand, the connections and memories made. It truly was entertainment on a grander scale!