Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.
- Alphonse Karr
All week long, I have been looking through the thorns to find those roses. None of the thorns were Big Deals, simply little problems and annoyances which could have added up to a bad mood.
1. As many of you know, Phoenix has been having some difficulties and learning some good life lessons this first quarter of school. One class in particular has been extremely difficult. It's not that he's incapable of learning the material, but that he has never had to put more than 10 minutes into homework in his life, and he's never had such a demanding class. The hole he dug for himself in the first weeks of school are just too big to climb out of in the weeks we have left. So, I am thankful for his teacher, counselor, and his school. They push the kids and expect a lot out of them, but they are also very understanding and accommodating when there are problems. Starting Monday, Phoenix will be in a class one level lower than the one he is in now, and his grades from the first quarter will be wiped out. He has been given a fresh start, and we are all relieved.
2. Travel soccer parents can be quite intense. Different teams have different "personalities", and I enjoy some more than others. Buttercup's team is one in which I do not see eye to eye with many of the parents. I usually sit off to myself when we go to games. Buttercup has many friends on her team, but there are a few kids she has trouble with. Last night, there was a team dinner, and neither of us were looking forward to going. Before walking in, we agreed to have a good attitude and do everything we could to have fun and use this chance to get to know everyone's non-soccer personality. I am thankful for the good time Buttercup and I both had. It started out a bit weird, but we gave each other "We promised we'd try" looks, and ended up having fun.
3. My normal morning routine includes internet reading while I eat my breakfast and wait for Cuckoo to wake up. On Friday morning, the internet was down. I was quite perturbed, since I had a post that just needed read through before I "published" it. Because I couldn't get online, I had to find something else to do. I chose to finally go through the photos on my computer and figure out which ones I wanted printed. I used to be so good at this, keeping all the kids' albums up to date. I am not good at it anymore. I am thankful for the internet going down, with the result being me having this job well on it's way to being done.
4. The four kids in grades K-8 were off school this week, but Phoenix still had high school to attend. To make matters worse, his days at school were all wonky. Three of the four were early dismissal days, and one of those days was parent/teacher conferences. Plus, they all had soccer practice in the evening. With these conditions, there was no way I could take the five non-high schoolers anywhere far. I am thankful for the time we had to stay at home. The little kids never left the house all week. Spent their days in pajamas even. We all simply hung out the entire week. We haven't had that much time to just relax and be "bored" in a long, long while. It was marvelous.
5. A very good friend's mom is very sick. My friend is an only child of divorced parents, so she is having to deal with the problems her mom is having on her own. This past week was extra bad, and my friend finally realized she needed help. I am thankful for the resources she and her mother had to find some professionals to get the proper help they need.
6. In all of this, my friend, who hates to ask people for help, was able to identify several things her friends could do, and then actually asked us. I am thankful I was able to help her when she finally made the call.
7. My friend needed help this morning. I was supposed to be taking Giant to a soccer game this morning. I am thankful for my children's attitude toward sports. They all know that soccer is simply a game. It's a fun game that they love doing, but it is just a game. They know I enjoy watching them play, but there are plenty of things more important than soccer. Giant had no problem at all with me skipping the game to help my friend.
8. Of course, his game was two hours away, so I couldn't just drop him off. I am thankful for his team (which has parents I enjoy) and the willingness of the parents to take Giant for me.
9. Cuckoo's new favorite game to play is War. It's a card game with zero strategy, but entails each person to turn a card over. High card wins that round. It can take an eternity to play to the end, and it is so mind-numbingly boring, I usually have trouble keeping my eyes open. I am thankful for the giggles Cuckoo gets each and every time he wins a round (by round, I mean each time we lay a card down. He giggles a lot.) and for the math skills he is perfecting while playing. He is a master at greater than/less than.
10. The cold is upon us. There is even talk of a chance of flurries next week. I really, really can't stand the cold. I am thankful for the heater that works as best it can in a drafty, 150 year old house. I am also thankful for the plethora of blankets we own so I can double up when the heater just can't get the house as warm as I'd like it.
What roses are you thankful for this week?
Have a lovely day!
A Fly on our (Chicken Coop) Wall, Considerings, Finding Ninee, Getting Literal, I can say mama, I Want Backsies, Rewritten, Steps into Parenthood, Thankful Me, The Wakefield Doctrine