Of Fall, Sickness, and Single-parenting

1. I am thankful for my husband. We are not the perfect couple. No one even guesses it for a minute that we might be blissfully happy. But we are in love. And with two stubborn and hard-headed people to get along and love the way we do is a miracle. And marriage is hard – everyone knows this. And after last night I am thankful that I am not a single parent because…

2. I took Sammers into the ER last night and Rick wasn’t there. He was camping in the deep woods with his buddies and there was no cell phone reception (not that we have a cell phone – I know – GASP!). Taking a little boy to the ER is scary enough in itself. But my child couldn’t walk. In fact, he was crying when any pressure was put on his left foot. And I was all alone. No husband. No sister. No parents. No one was around. Except for my God, whom I was constantly calling on. No broken bones. Only the nagging suspicion that this has been coming for a long time and I wasn’t pushy enough to have the crying in the midde of the night foot pain looked at closer. (I DID get two doctor’s opinions, however).

3. Good things that happened this week: For the first time this year we went to Farmer’s Market. We moved this summer and I just haven’t made it… Carrots, cucumbers, broccoli, zucchini, raspberries, dried BEAUTIFUL flowers – all for 8 bucks! And Sam asked for carrots and cucumbers today – in place of candy corn. Now if Sammy feels better later on this week we can go hiking to collect some pretty evergreen branches for a Fall wreath. We don’t do much for Halloween decorating because it’s scary and disgusting for the most part and that’s not something I take part in. I did find some very cute window stickers today at Walgreens for 0.99 w/ coupon – just glittery spiders and candy – perfect! Sam had lots of fun palying with those on the window.

Maybe soon I’ll convince my man to get the camera back on board so I can show pictures of my very pretty dired flower arrangement. Let’s pray I survive the night at work worrying about my limping little boy…

I’m a Mommy Duck

And while I think that’s a good thing, let me tell you what happened.

Sam and I were at the park today tossing rocks into the river. Ok, actually, we were gunning them in. Beside the point. Let’s just say the fish were probably darting for cover. And it attracted a group of ducks. I LOVE DUCKS. Maybe it’s from childhood memories of feeding them, but I think it’s the fact that they mate for life. And why is it  that I think that’s so romantic? They’re just ducks. But it’s sweet, is it not? That primal birds can find a way to get along with someone of the opposite sex for their entire lives and we, thinking, loving, blessed creatures of a true and loving God, can not? For this, I think ducks are special.

These three boy ducks and one girl duck were hanging out, checking out what we had. But we only had rocks. So, of course, we were not worthy of staying around, and they swam away. I remembered the pieces of PB&J that Sam decided he was too good for and we ran up the hill, into the car, and grabbed the sandwich. Once we got back down they were really far away and every inch we took closer they (being ducks) swam 5 more feet. I don’t blame them. We were throwing rocks, afterall.

The lady duck was lingering behind. I think she might have needed some lady duck time. A nice bath, some wine, etc. She totally let Sam get close to her. (Not me though.) Maybe she knew he was a baby? So she got all the sandwich pieces. Once the boy ducks saw that she was feasting on peanut butter and blueberry preserves (um, YUM!) they decided to come hang out. But she didn’t let those guys anywhere near her. Even though she came up on shore. Even though they were ALL yelling at her to come down and be safe. With a simple, “Quack!” She shut those guys up. And she was a bossy little thing, let me tell you. (I know. I got too attached, what can I say?) Maybe it’s mating season because every time those guys got around her she’d yell, they’d fall back, and be silent. It cracked me up. And I realized that she was the boss. The boss of her body and the boss of who she’s picking. And I don’t think she’s gonna be picking any of those dudes, let me tell ya. Maybe she just likes male company more. I know I do – sometimes. Anyway, I laughed and I asked Sam what we should name her and he said “Mom”. So I know I’m a bossy gal. But they still loved her. She and I are lucky that way, I guess.

Toilet Troubles with Your Man?

I hear you. Check this out. I couldn’t help but share…

Loving your man…

Everyday I get a small, little email reminding me of ways that I can be a better wife. I signed up with crosswalk.com in their daily devotionals to receive the “Loving Actions” devotion. I love it. Everyday, no matter what we are going through I am reminded to love my husband. And let me tell you – sometimes I need that reminder. No matter how severely, deeply, or passionately I love that man my sinful desires sometimes push me to (just like the Bible said I would ) control/manipulate/desire him more than God (often all three at once). 🙂 This reminds me daily HOW to love him. And, similarily, it speaks to each partner, so sometimes Rick gets forwarded one while he’s at work… hee hee!

I recommend this – or however else you can find – to remind you daily that you are his and he is yours, so that you can together be servants of our Holy Lord God, working together in harmony as we were originally designed to.

Be blessed!

Mother/Wife and Everything Inbetween

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To see the book, go here.

Hello all! I have missed writing so much this week! The old computer isn’t quite the same yet, as we need to wipe the hard drive and can’t do that until we copy all of our pictures to a discs, but it’s working enough to post this small bit I’ve been thinking about for some time.

Last week I posted about my new job title as a stay-at-home mom, or “Domestic Goddess”, etc. (LOVED that one, by the way, although not so sure any execs would…) I got so many awesome ideas – some funny, and still so many more that were hugely insightful. Right after that post I picked up a great book at the library called The Family manager Takes Charge: Getting on the Fast Track to a Happy, Organized Home by Kathy Peel. So, so good. On pages4-5 she has a humongous list of some real-to-life job descriptions any mom could easily be described as, working gainfully or otherwise. Here are just a few:

* Accountant/Bookkeeper

* Auto Maintenance Supervisor

* Day-care Worker

* Building Supervisor

* Chauffer

* Cheerleader

* Chef

* Counselor

* Dean of Education/Educator

* Fashion Coordinator (what would Rick look like in the morning without me?)

* Fitness Trainer

* Gardener

* Gift Coordinator (I buy all the cards and gifts for cousins Rick doesn’t even remember the names to!)

* Historian and Curator

* Health-care Practitioner (how many of you homeopathy buffs are out there?)

* Hotel manager (Go here to see more on that)

* Launderer

* Maid

* Manager of Food Services

* Referee

* Seamstress

* Secretary

* Short-order Cook

* Travel Agent

* Veterinarian

Okay, okay, so that’s more than just a few… but seriously, let’s just step back and take this all in. Consider finding this book and taking a little bit of time in it. I personally don’t have time to relearn how to clean my whole house from top to bottom – I’ve been taking care of this family unit for more than 7 years now and I’m pretty set in my ways, but I certainly was encouraged to find these. I feel pretty empowered right now. How about you? New topic coming soon!

My new job title

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I don’t know about you, but when I tell people that I am a stay-at-home mom their eyes glaze over. Or they raise their eyebrows in judgement. Or worse still they immediately assume my husband is a lawyer or a doctor or something that makes us rich so that I don’t “have” to work. *chuckle, chuckle!* All this aside, I AM looking for a part-time-after-Rick-gets-home-from-work job, but it’s hard to go into an interview and say, “Oh yes, hello. I have my degree and I have loads of experience, but if you could only schedule me from 5-9 and not on weekends and oh yeah I have Bible Study on Wednesday nights that I am committed to until June, Okay? Thanks!”

I’m sick of people judging me because I don’t have a professional 9-5’er. I mean, let’s be serious here. I don’t judge parents who both work and put their kids in daycare for 12 hours a day. I’ve worked in that atmosphere and I know those kids need a.) more sleep b.) more mental stimulation c.) more lovin and d.) more mental stimulation than what a daycare can give. I also know that this is what works best for some families. I also don’t expect my husband to come home, put his feet up, smoke a cigar and have dinner served to him by me in high heels, freshly applied make up, wearing a clean, cute little apron (no offense to those of you who CAN pull that off, by the way!). I expect that man to dig in and get his hands dirty with us, too. My job doesn’t stop once he gets home, why should his, right? My family sacrifices a lot so that I can be home with Sam. The biggest thing for me is more experience. I would love to have a professional career. I mean, come on now – who WOULDN’T like more money, the opportunity to help others, and some recognition? And while I sit here with no new clothes since maternity wear, a crappy dented van, and the only jewelery a wedding band – I see my twenties QUICKLY dwindling while my counterparts live the T.V. life (or so it would seem). I have a little more than a year left. And I’m only on child #1! But I LOVE my job and the negatives outweigh the benefits – at least for us.

 And this is why I think we need to come up with a better name for ourselves. Housewife sucked. Mostly just because it put women in two different (warring) categories – gainfully employed or not. Homemaker? Eh. Stay-at-home mom? Come on! How many of you spend your days actually AT HOME!? Plus all of these labels suggest that we just sit here on our ever expanding asses waiting for our husbands to come home so that we can finally start our day. (I must admit here that when the time draws near for Rick to get home I do get pretty excited. I’m almost as bad as the dog who waits by the door. But this doesn’t mean I don’t still have stuff to do…)

 I am suggesting something much more professional. Because, in reality, we are professionals. And we don’t want to exclude the stay-at-home-dads, now do we? I suggest something like the following:

*Director of Family Economics

*Home Maintenance and Welfare Manager

*Chief Educator

*Chairperson of Housing, Education and Dietetics

That’s all I’ve got right now. Any more you’d like to see up here? I’m getting pretty excited to redo my resume!

Bummed…

As soon as I was finishing up my last post from, oh, two seconds ago the landlady from House#3 (remember? With the park?) called and turned us down. Apparently the rent would have been 40% of our wage and they only take people at 35%. She called earlier and I ASSURED her that I have been holding off getting a night job until we moved (can you imagine moving with a job, Sam, and Ricky working? Not me…) and that I pretty much had one lined up, but she just called back and gave me the “Hell no” we’ve been praying against.

I’m pretty angry, although not surprised. This world is for the rich. My little boy doesn’t get to be rich. I can’t tell you the guilt that seeps in when I think about the mold I cleaned up in his room yet again. The other houses are gone now, too, so it looks like it’s back to the drawing board. Now I have to write Ricky and let him down. He’s been emailing about it all day. My head is spinning.

Just another day in Paradise, right? <sigh> Back to the the To-Do list…