Sunday, June 19, 2016

We're All Back Home Together Again!, TToT I don't even know the number anymore

This will be the most thankful week ever!

Two weeks ago, Phoenix and 70 other juniors and seniors left for a 2 week summer field studies out west. They've been rock climbing and white water rafting and hiking up mountains covered in 2 feet of snow and hiking to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and biking almost 40 miles around Durango and heading out to the backcountry for three days to sleep under the stars.

Last Sunday, Bryan and Buttercup left for a week-long mission trip in West Virginia. They have been building a fire escape, framing a wall, putting siding on a house, hanging out with the locals, and getting to know folks from other parts of the country also there to work.

I have been at home with the other four boys, getting them to soccer games and practices and tryouts and baseball games and practices and get-togethers with friends and the library to print things when our home printer died and all the other things that need doing around here.

I am so, so, sosososososososososo thankful to have everyone home (Well, Phoenix isn't here yet, but he will be tomorrow. They are currently in Topeka.) safe, sound, and able to drive people to all of their things.

I am thankful for modern technology and social media. I was able to keep tabs on everyone through photos posted on instagram and facebook.

In addition, Phoenix has even text me and checked in several times over the two weeks. When he left, I didn't tell him he had to, but I'm glad he did. I get all choked up thinking about how much fun he's having while doing so many new and exciting things.

Back here at home, I'm thankful for awesome families with whom we've spent many hours on the sidelines of soccer games. We've had our fair share of horrible experiences with parents I was embarrassed to be associated with over the 8 years we've been involved with club soccer, but the last couple of years have been great fun. Things are changing drastically with the end of this season (Buttercup has decided not to play soccer anymore, and rules have changed as far as age grouping goes, so Giant's team had to be split up.), and we're going to miss the camaraderie.

And I'm back. That was all written on Saturday afternoon. It is now Sunday afternoon, and I have 45 minutes to finish this before I leave to pick Phoenix up at the high school.

I am thankful for fabulous coaches, specifically, today, for Turken's baseball coaches. This season, his team is ranked #1. It isn't because the coaches gathered up all of the best players during the draft. The team has kids who have a very difficult time running from base to base. About 2 weeks into the season, all the coaches in the age group were told that a little girl wanted to join a team. No one wanted to take her. Our head coach said, "If it was my daughter, I'd be heartbroken if no one would want to take her. She can join our team." (This is the only girl in the league. I have no idea why she's playing baseball here instead of softball.) This sweet girl couldn't hit or catch a ball when she came to the first practice. Through the season, the coaches have practiced and encouraged and done a beautiful job with these kids. Now, every kid can hit and catch and participate fully in the game. Tomorrow they play in the semi-final championship game. Give up a cheer for them if you think about it!

Friday night, three of the boys and I headed downtown to our minor league baseball field to watch our high school boys play in the state championship game. (I love living so close to the capital. There are so many opportunities to see and do things we otherwise wouldn't get to do.) Going into the post-season, they weren't even ranked. In this final game, they were playing the #1 ranked team. In extra innings, we won!! I got all teary watching these boys, some of whom we've known for over a decade, play such a great game and take home the trophy.

Star is 15!! Based on behavior from most of his life, I never thought I'd see the day, but he is becoming such a responsible, thoughtful, helpful, outgoing young man. This summer isn't exactly a fun one for him. Most days his schedule includes 2 hours of trimming trees, 2 hours of school work, and 2 hours of soccer practice. On top of that, he empties the dishwasher without being told and takes the little boys out to work with him in the yard. He did a great job being the "man of the house" while Bryan and Phoenix were gone, and even did the unenviable job of locking the chickens up each night. (It is creepy out there in the pitch black dark!) He's busted out of his very quiet bubble that he lived in all through elementary and middle school and is making friends left and right, having a blast in high school. It's been wonderful to watch the transformation, and I'm looking forward to what will be coming in the next few years.

On this Father's Day, I'm so grateful for my dad. While there have been plenty of rough patches through the years of divorce and remarriage and all that came with it, I always knew he loved me. Completely. I knew what it was like to be loved, and as a result I could recognize true love when Bryan came along.

Lastly, I am thankful for my awesome husband. I can't even begin to list all the reasons why. You long-time readers already know. :)

Aaaaaaand, time's up. Time to go pick up my (6'2", not a chance I'll be able to pick him up even if I tried) baby!

Your turn. What good things have happened in your life this week?

Have a lovely day!

Ten Things of Thankful


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Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The Best Laid Plans of the Father Are Rarely Good for the Mother

I'm going with my friend's (Ivy) approach to blogging and just unloading my brain instead of coming up with those well-thought out hilarious posts of mine you are so used to. The way this blog is going, it may be the only way any writing ever gets done again.

While I was in DC, Bryan came up with a plan to get work done around the house and began the execution of it without hashing it out with me first. In case you're wondering, this behavior on his part never, ever works out well for me.

He told the kids he'd pay them $7.50 per hour to do certain big chores around the house. Things like scraping and painting outbuildings, trimming trees, and weeding the garden. (The kids agreed that mowing was an easy job that didn't deserve full pay, so mowing only earns a kid half pay.) The kids choose which chore they want to do and when they want to do it.

The execution of said plan...

Giant decided to tackle the scraping and painting of the milk house. While Bryan was at work, I got to stop what I was doing (basically being vomited on by our printer's ink cartridge, leaving me covered in black ink) to help Giant pour paint from the super heavy 5 gallon bucket into the paint pan. I'm estimating a pint splatted on the grass before we got the paint pouring in the right direction. I got to help him set up the ladder on the side of the milk house, which happens to be a hill and quite a precarious place for a 13 year old to stand on a ladder to paint. Even worse when the paint pan is set upon the ladder and tilts, thus spilling the paint. Oh, and I forgot to mention there was a nice clip of a wind blowing across the farm. When the paint began to spill, the wind caught it and sent it flying in what would have been a beautiful arc of paint drops if it weren't for the fact the paint was arcing mostly onto me. After the cursing and screaming, I realized that while it was a huge mess, the white did compliment the black ink quite well.

Star decided to tackle the trimming of the trees along the driveway, which, if you'll recall, is a quarter mile long. He was doing a great job, working hard and earning every penny of his $7.50 per hour. Until he got a splinter of wood in his eye because he was never told to wear protective eye wear. He thought he had gotten it out, but three hours later, his eye was all red and discomfort turned to all-out pain. I had to stop what I was doing to get a call into our eye doctor, who just happened to be out of town, then call to get an appointment that day in an eye clinic 30 minutes away.  The poor guy has scratches all over his eyeball, so I now get to stop what I'm doing to put a drop of antibiotics in his eye 4 times a day.

Buttercup decided to mow the grass one day. She managed to get 1/5 of it done, including the west side of the driveway. Not the right side. And then she got busy doing school summer work and packing and leaving for a week-long mission trip. With Bryan. On a week that Phoenix was also out of town on his 2-week summer field studies. Thus leaving me with only one driver, ME, in the house and lots of practices and games and tryouts and appointments. It wasn't until 5 days later that I could finally get out to mow the other 4/5 of the yard. The unmowed section was quite tall, and I was so happy to finally get it done. When starting the mower, it usually takes a couple of tries before the mower really gets going, but this time, on the second turn of the key, it went pop and turned off, never to make a noise again. Zip. Zilch. Nada. I opened it up to see what I could see, but news flash, I am not mechanically inclined. I have absolutely no idea how to get that blasted thing working again. I trudged back in the house to call the service guy. He was able to pick it up that very day! Yeah! Oh, but we're about 10-12 days out before you'll get it back again. That was yesterday. For two weeks, I'll be watching my grass (and to be real, weeds. Our yard is half weeds) grow taller and taller and taller. Quite lopsided, seeing as how 4/5 of the yard have a good headstart on the rest.

BUT! in the midst of all of this nonsense, I managed to learn a new skill. Ya'll, I made me some jelly with those annoying little mulberries we have all over the property. It only took me 2 hours to pick the fruit, 20 minutes to find a jam recipe I could handle, and another 3 hours to heat, squash, mill, curse, conclude jelly instead of jam was a much better idea, strain, yell (GUYS! I NEED MORE BERRIES!! THE PECTIN BOX SAYS I NEED 4 AND A HALF CUPS OF BERRY JUICE, BUT I ONLY HAVE 3 AND A HALF!! PICK! PICK! PIIIIIIIICK!!!!) heat, squash, mill, and strain again, then boil with sugar and pectin, ladle into jars, and sterilize using the water bath method to get 7 tiny jars of yummy mulberry jelly.

Next time, I'm thinking I can cut the time down to only four hours.

Well, that's all the time I have to unload today. There's a nice, hot, humid afternoon calling my hair to come out and play.

I hope to be back soon to update you on other non-exciting times in our lives.

Have a lovely day!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Hopefully the Overabundance of Photos Will Make Up for My Absence, TToT 155

Hi!!!

*Picture me waving to you*

Here I am!

And here's what I've been up to these past couple of weeks...

1. Giant graduated from 8th grade! It's a big deal when the school is K-8. It's an even bigger deal when it is the 4th Coop kid to graduate in 4 years. We now have FOUR high schoolers! 





Yup, this is the one we consider the keeper. Get the frames ready.
2. Hanging out with the newly graduated! The 8th graders get out of school a week before the rest of the school (and their high school siblings), so that left all sorts of kids languishing at home by themselves. Giant and I went around picking them up so they could all have a fun day together.

We found a new-to-us miniature golf place. $4 to play all day, even if you leave for lunch and come back later, which we did.

3. Sports! Club soccer (Giant and Buttercup) and baseball (Turken) are in their final weeks, with championship games on the near horizon. The weather has been cooperating for the most part (Baseball on Thursday was perfection!), but we'll see how tomorrow goes. I hear there's to be lots of rain and some storms moving in. High school soccer practices started this week. It makes me all teary to see my three oldest boys walking up to the house, soccer bags slung over their shoulders, sweat dried on their brows, after practicing together. I'm really looking forward to the coming season!

4. Last day of school! Talk about a complete turn-around. The first day of school brought all sorts of emotions and tears as a phase of my life ended. As we all knew would happen, I got used to having the quiet days to myself. I got to enjoy doing errands and lunches and basically whatever I wanted whenever I wanted without worrying about how a child would handle it. And now they were coming back. To be with me all day every day. I'm happy to say, so far, it's been as awesome as always. Summer break is the best.

5. Taking a trip to Washington, DC! Remember when we surprised the kids with a trip to Disney, but Phoenix and I were delayed and had to change our flights? Well, we each had an airline credit that expired if we didn't travel by June 1. Bryan was getting on me to schedule something, but I was dragging my feet for a variety of reasons. In the end, I told him I didn't care where we went, just make sure the new flight costs the same as our credit. Ended up, DC was the destination. Phoenix and I spent a quick 3 days packing in as much DC as we could.

This was not my first trip to DC. I was shocked to see how much security has been beefed up.  No going up to the gates of the White House lawn anymore!

Duck. In the water flowing into the WWII memorial with the Lincoln Memorial in the background

WWII Memorial at night.

We went to Mass at the oldest Catholic church in DC.
6. While we were in DC, we were able to meet up with Kristi and Tucker! (Sadly, Sarah was off visiting family in another state and couldn't join us.)  It was a quick visit (WAY too quick), but it was wonderful. We watched motorcycles (I'll explain in the next thankful.), ate ice cream, and cooled our feet in a fountain. 

As I've said before, I never guessed that blogging would lead to making friends all over the world, yet that's exactly what has happened. I've met quite a few in person, and I'm happy to say this is yet another one who didn't end up as a male ax murderer but was the funny, interesting, kind lady I expected her to be.


7. We remembered those who didn't make it back from the Vietnam War. One thing about being in DC over Memorial Day...there are a LOT of people. We waited in long lines to get into every single museum. Even the ones that weren't free. It was worth it, though, just to be there for the goings-on. Friday night, we walked around the National Mall. While standing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, we saw hundreds and hundreds of motorcycles parked on the street and in the grass nearby. More and more were joining them. We walked down to see what was going on. Came to find out, each year, Vietnam Vets ride in for a candlelight vigil and a "parade". The couple we spoke with said that the last time they attended (2 years ago) 800,000 bikes were there. 

My dad fought in Vietnam. He fought alongside of people whose names are on the Memorial Wall. We stayed for the highly emotional candlelight vigil on Friday night. We made sure to be standing along Constitution Ave. for the ride on Sunday. (The "parade" lasted 5 hours or so. We didn't stay for the whole thing, but we stood, watched, and waved at different points during the afternoon, including a bit with Kristi.)



Before the vigil, people lined up by the memorial wall.




8. Enjoying simply soaking in the beauty of flowers. Flowers that are actually growing around my house.











9. Beginning a summer of Fun Fridays! High school soccer is Monday-Thursday from 6-8 each day. Add in travel and such, that's a good 4 hours the boys are gone. And those practices are tough. So much running and conditioning besides playing soccer. Going to a state park to hike before practice is just a bad, bad idea. So, we instituted Fun Fridays. Today we went to one of my favorite parks. (I wrote one of my favorite posts after our last trip there. It kind of lays out my parenting philosophy. You may want to click back to it just to compare photos. Kids grow so daggum fast!)

The weather was perfect, and we had a great time.

I have an almost identical photo of this scene in the other post. Back then Turken was too young to do such death-defying exploration.

No fear of heights in these boys.


A giant tree had recencly (very recently) fallen down over the creek we were following. Couldn't go around it, had to go over it. And hang out in it. And climb it.

Before the day was done, they were all soaked through. At one point they broke out into a roaring game of tag in which you tagged the person by kicking water onto him.

10. Playing games and eating together and getting major manual labor done around the house and cooking with Cuckoo and and and and...so many ands.

How have you been? What have you been up to while I've been gone?

Tell me what you're thankful for!

And then...

Have a lovely day!

*I apologize now for any and all spelling and grammatical errors. I stayed up 2 hours past my bedtime to get this sucker done, and I just don't have the energy to reread before I publish.*

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Saturday, May 21, 2016

Did You Know Our Kids Play Sports and Do Other Stuff? TToT Week 153

As I drove to the volleyball game this morning, I was pondering my thankful post. I came up with a great intro to it, too.

Unfortunately, that was 6 hours ago. My brain is only capable of holding onto information for 3 Mississippis.

You get no great intro.

Maybe next time.

So, the thankfuls...

If you recall, last week I asked you to cheer Phoenix and his volleyball team on to victory in the state competition. Friday night, they played beautifully and won in only three sets. (Each match is best out of 5.) This morning they played the number one team in the state. It went to 5 games, and they ended up losing by 2 points. I feel awful for those boys. Seven seniors have been on the verge of winning the kit and kaboodle four years in a row. Each year they have lost in 5 sets, and by only 2-4 points in the fifth set. This was going to be their year. Ugh.

I am thankful that Phoenix had the opportunity to play with such helpful, generous, fun ballplayers.

Pregame introductions. My boy is #10.

I am thankful that my kids go to a school with such great fans. There were 2 matches going on at the same time in the same gym, (so four teams playing at a time) and our fans took up half the stadium. So many non-volleyball-playing students and parents came out to root the boys on. It was nice to see. (I know the gym looks empty in that photo above, but from where this is taken, all the way down the left sideline and a full section to the right of me, the stands are full of fans from our school.)

With this, volleyball season is over. While I do like watching them play, I am glad that I no longer have to drive to the high school to pick up Buttercup and Star after school anymore. Phoenix won't be going to practice and will be able to bring them home again.

Giant finished his career at the elementary/middle school. The last day was Friday. He and the rest of his class are ready to head out to the high school. It will come quick for Giant, seeing as how high school soccer practices start May 30!

The rest of the Coop kids will be done with school on Thursday. The teens only have finals left, so half days for them, and the two little boys will be having nothing but fun for most of the last few days.

The sun is currently shining. Sure, there are nasty looking clouds surrounding the bit of blue, but this is more sun than we've seen in a long time.

Turken is having a great time playing baseball. All the kids are improving by leaps and bounds thanks to 3 fabulous coaches. Out of the blue, Turken asked if he could pitch an inning (At this age, the first two of the six innings are kid-pitch.) and his coaches let him give it a try. His form leaves much to be desired, but he did so well, they let him pitch in two different games.



I am thankful for the sweet little boy (Cuckoo) who loves to pick "flowers" for all females who happen to be in our house at any given time.


I am thankful for the planners of downtown Indy. There are so, so many fun things to do. Last night most of the family went to an Indianapolis Indians baseball game. After school but before the game we had time to just hand out at White River State Park (also downtown).

I love that my kids can enjoy themselves in just about any situation.

There is a small area in the park that has all of these limestone benches laid out in concentric circle formation. They spent half an hour jumping from stone to stone, and then a rousing game of Camouflage. 
 Alrighty. That's it for today. Let me know what you've been up to this week. Do tell, for what are you grateful?

Have a lovely day!




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Sunday, May 15, 2016

We Have May Flowers, Despite the April Showers Overrunnething Their Month, TToT 151

8:11.

Plenty of time to get a thankful post in...

First and foremost, I am most grateful for my lovely husband. He's awesome in general, but last weekend the man went all out. Since Mother's Day happened to be the day after Turken's First Communion, we had a crowd. Besides me, there were three other mothers here to celebrate and pamper. Bryan got the kids up early to set the table, including vases of flowers at each place setting. They made waffles with hot cinnamon apples and whipped cream, giant cinnamon rolls, eight different fruits, freshly squeezed orange juice, and skillets made to order, with hash browns, eggs, and all the veggies. I have never been more impressed, and the mothers (and my dad, who stood in for my stepmom) were thrilled to be treated to such a feast.

Star finished his first year of track with a great finish. He had so much fun throughout the season, meeting new kids and trying a new sport for him.

Phoenix's volleyball team is going strong. They just won Regionals quite handily, sending them to state quarter finals on Friday. For the last three years, the 7 seniors on the team have made it to state finals but have been unable to win. Always close, always going to all 5 games, twice losing by less than 5 points. THIS has got to be their year. Do us a favor and cheer them on Friday night at 8:00 from wherever you are.

The weather has basically been miserable for the last many days. I am so glad Phoenix plays a sport that takes place in a gym. Bryan got to be the one sitting in the cold for most of the soccer and baseball games this week.

Speaking of baseball, Turken is loving the sport again. Back in November, he told me he didn't want to play baseball again. He was still riding the high of soccer season and couldn't remember how much he liked baseball. I didn't listen to him and signed him up anyway. The other day he told me, "It's weird how when I'm playing soccer, it's my favorite sport, but when it's baseball season, that's my favorite."  Phew.

The animals have seemed to come to an agreement. Kinda like Zootopia right in our own backyard. The chickens are all over the property, but as long as they stay more than 10 yards away from the house, the dogs don't bother them. The cat is basically allowed anywhere he wants if the dogs are lying down, seeing as how they don't find it worth the effort to chase him anymore. If the dogs are already standing up, they might put on a half-hearted show of chasing him for a few feet, but there's really no fear of them catching or hurting him. It's quite pleasant around here these days.

The rain stopped long enough for the ground to absorb most of the water. Everything but the driveway has been mowed. The driveway is still quite squishy and must continue to grow unchecked.

The spiderwort my friend Donna gave me last summer is blooming beautifully! The spindly little plant I put in the ground back in July now looks like this...



I have also found a way to ensure that the dogs don't dig up flowers in the front of the house anymore. I don't know why I haven't thought of this before.

Flower pots!!



Even better when the flower pot is in a cute flower pot holder I found for $15.


Turken was home from school on Friday because he was up for much of the previous night coughing up a lung or two. I am very happy to say the cough is gone and he is back to normal. 

It's 9:11. 

My hour is up.

Gotta get this sucker posted and added to the link up. Feel free to join me!

Have a lovely day!




Ten Things of Thankful


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Monday, May 9, 2016

Well, I Didn't Set Out to Get Contemplative, or What We've Been Up to in 5,000 Words or Less

Remember back in August when ALL of my kids started school and I was at a loss as to what to do with all of my alone time?

(If you don't, read this. Ranks up there as one of my favorite posts I ever wrote. I still laugh just thinking about it.)

Well, I think I've come up with an answer.

I want to be a hermit.

In all my years of motherhood, I never had more than an hour or so at home by myself, and that hour or so was only on an occasional Mother's Day when Bryan took the kids out to find something for me.

Who knew being at home in a quiet house could be so nice??

I am actually hunting out reasons and ways to stay home as much as possible during the day.

You need thousands of Coke rewards (made up of 16 characters each, written on the tops of seriously hard to read bottle lids) entered into the website? I'M ON IT!

You need food for this, that, and every organization/family/group? I'LL MAKE TWO TIMES MORE THAN YOU NEED!!

You need someone to wash and iron all of the linens for church? SIGN ME UP!!

I could not be more shocked about this turn of events.

I like people. I like being around people. I like doing things with and for people.

And yet.

I'm actively searching out ways to help without coming face-to-face with a single person.

Mind-boggling.

But there you have it.

Also, I'm coming up with extra work for myself as far as taking care of the family goes.

For example, I made the executive decision to no longer buy packaged junk food. I have always limited the intake of junk food by my kids, but I've never banned it. I always had some candy or Little Debbies or some such thing in the cupboard for them to have after dinner. Well, during Lent we gave up those things, and after Lent, I just kept it going. Instead, we only eat desserts that are made in this house. In my mind, I think of it as healthier. Less preservatives, more love and all that jazz.

This means that I have to actually make the desserts, and a lot of them, seeing as how we in the coop have needy sweet teeth.

For weeks now, I have actually been planning dinners a week at a time (never, ever been done before!) AND the dessert to go with each meal.

You know what else has happened for the first time ever in our married lives?

We have a legit bit of landscaping. And flowers. In pots. On the porch. Never, ever have I "decorated" the porch like grown adult people do.

I don't wear pearls while I do all of this cooking and flowering, but you can still call me June.

And then, from 2:00 on, my butt is in the driver's seat of the van or on a bleacher watching one of my kids hit a ball, kick a ball, spike a ball, or run a race.

I am feeling the pressure of my kids getting older. I physically hurt from the knowledge that Phoenix will be turning 18 in September. It's weighing on me that all of that talk about one day all four of the big kids will be in high school at the same time is no longer sometime in the distant future. In less than 2 weeks, that day will be here. Every year for the next 4 years, one of my kids will move off to college. In the blink of an eye, I will have only two kids left at home.

So, whenever a teen wants to go somewhere, do something, or chat about something, I'm all in. I am encouraging it as much as I possibly can. I want these last years of getting to see these beautiful people every single day to be spent the best way possible.

And of course, there's always the little ones who want to cuddle and be read to and be watched while they do some normal but amazing feat of daring. I'm not about to say no to that either.

We had 30 minutes to kill between practices. Thankfully it was during one of the few bright spots of good weather we had last week. 

This time of year, there's always some special occasion going on, too. I'm doing my best to let the worry about the logistics go in order to simply enjoy them for the special events that they are.


May Crowning is a big day for the 8th graders and their parents.
Not as big as my sweet 8 year old's First Holy Communion, though, which also happened this week. 
And then there's the mundane, must-get-dones. Like follow-up root canal appointments and the dreaded cleaning of the bathrooms.

And there will always be the expected but unexpected dilemmas. Like a teen unfamiliar with the sucky, sinking nature of mud trying to drive a Dixie Chopper through it.

It took the two of us 45 minutes, as the sun was setting, to get this sucker unstuck, and in the end I didn't go backward, but forward into the trap of thorny, low branches trying to take my head clean off my neck.
In short, I'm busy.

Such a cliche. Such a stupid word to describe all that is going on. And so completely normal for just about everyone.

I miss my friends I've made in this blogging world. I miss reading posts they've written. I miss joking and having fun with them.

And yet.

Here I am, not writing and reading most days.

Here I am, trying unsuccessfully to live the life of a hermit.

Well, a hermit with a husband, 6 kids, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and 14 chickens.

Hermitish.

What's been keeping you busy?

Have a lovely day!

Friday, April 29, 2016

BOOM! A TToT Post at the Beginning of the Weekend. Week 150!

Do not adjust your computer.

I know you are a bit confused right about now.

"Wait a minute! I don't remember sleeping in and relaxing and getting yard work done and all those other things I do on the weekend! But it must be Sunday night because Christine's thankful post is up."

Fear not.

You didn't sleep through the weekend.

I simply got my act together and got this sucker written on Friday.

No one is more surprised than me.

On to the thankfuls!!

1. I may not be able to get an entire post written in a week, but I can write 6 words! Just ask Eli from Coach Daddy. Each month he assigns a prompt and folks respond using only 6 words. This month, in celebration (or maybe in defiance?) of Money Smart week, he asked us about a time we weren't exactly smart with our money, and I actually got my answer in on time! (You'll have to go to his post to see what my answer was.)

2. I managed to get most of the mowing done tonight before the rain moves in.

3. I also managed to get some flowers planted around the house.

4. The middle school performed the musical this week, and it was as awesome as always. Each year I'm astounded yet again by the talent mere 12, 13, and 14 year olds possess. But also, I'm thrilled that musical practices are over. The last two weeks before show time are killer.

5. My mom was able to come up for several days this week. She came up for the musical, but ended up seeing a baseball game, too. She and I had a couple of lovely days by ourselves while the kids were at school.

6. Turken's First Holy Communion is next week, and we have a suit! He is apparently much smaller than any of the older boys were in second grade, so I had to buy one. BUT THEN a friend of mine said she had a size 8 suit that her son wore for his First Communion and said we could have it. He tried it on, and it fits! The one I bought will be going back to the store.

7. The gigantic, 150-year old, dead trees at the end of our driveway (that were threatening to fall and crush an innocent passerby) are gone, and it didn't cost me thousands of dollars. While it was costly, from what I hear about tree removal, it was a great price. It took them 8 hours, but the job is done and done well. The only sign that trees were ever there are the two patches of empty earth.

8. My family goes with the flow when dinner turns out to be way less than it was supposed to be. Like tonight. I was making 2 pot pies, but after getting the filling into the crusts, I realized I didn't actually buy two boxes. I didn't have any crust to put on the tops of them. I didn't have time to make crusts, so I went out on a limb and popped open some (expired) Pillsbury biscuits in the back of the fridge. I flattened them out and plopped them on top.
If the biscuits wouldn't have burned, it might have worked.
The kids who "don't like it" (I think it must be a superpower that my kids know without ever tasting something that they don't like it. (That was sarcasm.)) didn't complain any more than usual, and the kids who do like pot pie ate it without much ado.

9. Buttercup is racking up the driving hours. I'm getting greedy. I'm used to Phoenix driving, and while it is super handy, I could really use another driver in this house. She should be able to get hers by the end of June.

10. I'm thankful for Bryan. For more reasons than I can count.

How is your week going? I'd love for you to leave a comment or join in the link up!

Have a lovely day!


Ten Things of Thankful


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