Thursday, July 31, 2014

These days...

These days, in no particular order:

*I sleep like a log.  Unless I'm awakened in the middle of the night by a dream, or Chloe's aching leg, or Ryan's bleeding nose (common culprits), and my brain starts running.  Then I'm guaranteed an hour long toss and turn fest, or in tonight's case, said hour, followed by a, "Sheesh, might as well get up and write a blog post."

*Chloe continues to sass, question and critique me on a regular basis.  Some days I'm convinced she's more hormonal than I am.  Thank goodness that with the drama comes a genuinely caring and compassionate heart.  She really is a good girl (with an attitude).

*Ryan, my once mellow, chill kid, is beginning to demonstrate some undesirable personality traits, namely temper tantrums.  This has never been in his nature, ever!  Today he told me, "Mom, you're starting to make me angry."  Not a huge fan of this "phase," but I'll take his communicative efforts over the silent treatment his sister so often gives me, any day!  Thank goodness he still has that tender, sweet side.

*I'm 2 1/2 months into the busiest and most humbling church calling I've ever had: Young Women president.  Much like motherhood, it's tiresome and never-ending.  Even when the boxes are checked, activities planned, lessons prepared, meetings completed, reports submitted, visits made, hugs given, and prayers said, there's still an unspoken weight on my shoulders.  It's a weight that as a past YW counselor and advisor (a few times over), I never, ever felt to this magnitude.  And try as I might to lighten things (through organization, delegation and prayer), I'm beginning to accept that it just goes with the territory of being president.  Just as mothers never, ever stop worrying about their children, I never, ever stop worrying about my girls.  I never knew it was possible to love a group of young women so much.
{Girls Camp 2014!!}  
*I listen to a lot of Ella Fitzgerald on Pandora.  Her music and music like hers soothes my soul, and literally takes the edge off when I'm stressed.  Some days she's my BFF.

*My children make me crazy.  If there's an argument or competition to be had, they find a way.  I'm constantly having to intervene, and sadly, most days, the "blissful" moments come in millisecond form.  I don't know if it's their ages, the summer weather or routine, or just the simple fact that they're siblings and this is what siblings do, but by bedtime, I'm generally ready to shake them.  There are so many components to being a good parent.  Raising a decent, respectable human being with all the desirable traits is very hard.  So often I feel like I'm failing them, but deep down I know I'm doing my very best.  I do love them.

*Speaking of kids, their first day of school is 2 weeks from today.  What's that about!?  Third grade and Kindergarten?  Not ready.

*Neil loves his job.  He also loves his short commute and the fact that his two hospitals are right across the street from each other.  A happily employed husband makes for a happy wife, let me tell you.  And the green scrubs he wears doesn't hurt anything either.  What is it about a man in scrubs?

*I have been on a major reading kick since about February, and have read 8 novels to date.  Currently, Jane Eyre sits on my bedside table.  13 chapters in and I still have yet to be engaged.  I can tell it's about to get interesting, but I have to be honest.  Charlotte Bronte, while an excellent writer, at least in THIS novel, lacks a certain level of wit and humor that I LONG FOR.  The story line is dark and dreary so far, which doesn't make me excited to keep going.  But I know many, many people who love this novel, and it is a classic after all, so I'm expecting that I'll start to get sucked in soon.  I hope so anyway!  Reading is therapy to me.  I've sacrificed sleep to make it happen these recent months, but it's worked wonders for my soul and sanity.

*We continue to stay busy with house projects and furniture.  So far, Neil has built a dining room table, a TV stand, both kids' bedroom sets (beds, night stands and dressers) and a step stool for the bathroom.  Last week while I was at girl's camp, he installed paneling in Ryan's room, and tonight finished crown molding.  There's still SO much to be done, but we're slowly making our house a home.  Father's Day marked 1 year since we moved in.  Hard to believe.

*I'm ready for Fall!!  These consecutive days in triple digits with zero chance of precipitation is getting old.

Grateful for the good things in my life, and also the trials.  My constant hope is that both can continually mold me into a better Valeri.
{Fort Collins, CO - July 2014}