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.


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.


What's been keeping you busy?

Have a lovely day!


  1. And you'll turn around one day and all the kids will be gone and you'll have this empty nest feeling for a couple of weeks then you'll be thrilled you have the house to yourself. They you'll clean like you've never cleaned before and redo rooms for what you want them to be. Then one of the kids will come back home for a bit. Perhaps two. It's the way of things.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

    1. I see so much of this happening. Especially the cleaning part. I've been laughing lately, as I roll my eyes at something irritating one of the kids has been doing his entire life, thinking, I only have one/two/or three more years until I won't have to deal with this anymore. Yup, pretty sure I'll enjoy some aspects of the empty nest. :)

  2. I totally understand this. ALL of it.

  3. Dear June,

    I miss you lots, but WOW! You're doing an epic, amazing, awesome job at being YOU, and fulfilling all those important roles at home, so I can't even begrudge your presence - after all, one of the things which drew me to you initially was just how VERY MUCH you win at parenting. You're still doing that, to SUPERHUGEAMAZING proportions, so HOORAY!

    I hope you keep finding ways to hermit-help :) And as for homemade desserts? BEST EVER :D

    1. Ha!
      I miss you, too, darling. Lately, it's not even just blog friends I miss. I don't even get to see my best friends who live in my same town. If a person doesn't have a kid on one of my kids' teams/groups, I don't get to see her.

      Thank you for understanding. It's been quite a year of exploration and discovery, mixed in with the parenting. I only get one shot at this parenting thing, and I am doing everything possible to make sure I do it right. Thank you for being such a good cheerleader for me. :)

      They are the best. We've been eating well lately. Not good for the graviteer challenge, but at this point, I'm having a hard time caring. :)

  4. Amen- I love being a hermit too... the house is quiet - when no one is around even my dog is quiet ( ha)

    but I get all of this; it is short and goes very quickly, take from me I know- lately my little Miss is looking for me more and more and I am loving it - we are walking at night or do yoga together - or watching a movie or reading its awesome.

    good for you and your family with less junk food - I am the same - it wasn't banned but we don't buy a lot.

    Congratulations Holy Communion is a big deal.

    have fun hermiting LOL :)

  5. Definitely miss you, but I can so relate to your post. Since I started working for myself at home, I find it easier and easier to home. I truly could go days without interacting with another human being. And, like you said, and yet... I've found ways to enjoy my solitude and make the most of it and on the days when I do have to go out and people, I kind of enjoy it. (But not as much as the days when I don't have to people.)
    Love the impish little grin in the Communion pic! Ours turned out much like that as well. :D
    I find myself thinking so much about similar things lately - only not in the six kids all in school, one per year heading off to college way. My mind is so stuck on the idea that every one of my child's firsts is also a last for us. I'm not as miserable as it all sounds. In fact, I think I've gotten to a good place about it. And I finally put it in a post, which I now have to finish and publish.

  6. You know I honestly believe God gives us seasons that fit with our lives and we do well to listen to those rhythms. Enjoy these years with your children and know there is much joy in the next season as well : )

  7. I loved this post, I really identified with it. Perhaps I morphed into an introvert when becoming a SAHM, but like you, I embrace the chance to stay home. And cherish what remains of my offsprings' youth. Sounds like you are having FUN.


Thank you for taking the time to tell me what you're thinking!