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!
A Fly on our (Chicken Coop) Wall, Amycake and the Dude, Considerings, Finding Ninee, Getting Literal, I Want Backsies, The Meaning of Me, Thankful Me, Uncharted, The Wakefield Doctrine
What a lovely and thankful post. I love your thankful posts and that's why I do Thankful Thursdays. There is so much to be thankful for if we just take a moment to reflect.ReplyDelete
Have a fabulous day and enjoy the family being all back together again. Tomorrow they will all be back in the nest. ☺
The nest is full again. I couldn't be happier. :)Delete
That is the key, though, isn't it? We have to actually look for those things for which we are thankful.
Ahhhhh what a wonderful, wonderful way to end your post. I'm so SO glad for Bryan, and for your dad, for being such top-notch guys. Bryan is one of the people (as you are) who makes me think there's definitely people out there getting it RIGHT, and teaching the next generation how to get it right, too. Sounds like that baseball coach might be cut from the same cloth :)ReplyDelete
There are an awfully lot of men out there being good daddies. We could use more, but I'm going to celebrate the ones we have.Delete
What a great week you have had! Hurray for families, fathers, and great coaches!ReplyDelete
6"2" wow ...love it when one can see their kids true joys and potential...ReplyDelete
as always sounds like a fun-filled -very busy schedule
funny you should mention the age grouping the same thing is happening here.
i have a 15 year old now too, and couldn't be so proud.
13-14 was sketchy yet manageable he helps us so much, he has a great personality and humor and is very liked among his peers.
i know how relieved you are to have everyone home enjoy your week
It sounds like most states are moving to the soccer age grouping that the rest of the world does. It makes no sense to me why they are doing it, though. How many kids actually play in the rest of the world? And how many teams are going to be messed up each year when half the kids on the team are in high school, but the other half in middle school are left without a team for a season? But hey, let's go with the world. Ugh.Delete
Thirteen is a rough year. Glad you've seen your way through to the other, more enjoyable side. ;)
Phoenix's field studies trip sounds awesome, with just the sort of things I would have liked to do at that age. And well done for him being thoughtful enough to text you a few times even though you didn't ask him to :)ReplyDelete
I'm glad your head baseball coach let the little girl join the team when no-one else would take her - if she was my daughter and I was there I think I would have hugged him :)
I really must focus my eyes properly - I thought you'd written 'Star had the unenviable task of locking the CHILDREN up each night'! lol. It sounds like he's not only coming out of his shell but growing into a responsible and thoughtful young man - nice one (you'll have to imagine the thumbs up) :)
Bryan and your dad? Definitely two great guys - 'nuff said :)
I know what you mean when you say you couldn't pick Phoenix up now he's 6'2''. I well remember the time I could pick up my own son with one arm and sit him on my bike seat to ride him to school - at 5'8'' he's not tall compared to Phoenix but there's no way I could do that now!
Hope you have a fabulous week with all your family back together - do check out my blog when you get a few minutes, I'm writing up my recent 10-day holiday including the lightning strike :)
While I was thoroughly enjoying keeping up with the field studies trip, I was also quite envious. There was no such opportunity at my high school.Delete
Hahaha!! Yes, we lock our children up at night to make sure they stay in bed and leave us to a good night's sleep. ;)
I have been reading your posts! I read them yesterday, but I didn't comment because I was reading on my iPad and it is a pain in the rear to comment with it. Looking forward to reading the rest!
so I would have sworn that I wrote a Comment just yesterday. But, no, apparently it was just a dream. (It was clever, insightful and smile-inspiring*, but then, that's a given, isn't it?)ReplyDelete
Busy start to the Summer season, y'all.
*as opposed to simile inspiring, like... (ha ha)
Ah, sorry I missed it. No doubt I would have chuckled. :)Delete
It sounds busy, but really it's better than the school year. We had an entire weekend free of commitments. And there are more on the horizon. That never, ever happens during the school year!
Wow...Phoenix's trip sounds AH-MAAAZING!!! How fun for them all!ReplyDelete
I wish all coaches were like Turken's. Hope they ended off their season with a bang! :D
Definitely easy to see why all your kids are so giving, thoughtful and hard working. You and Bryan are such wonderful parents. <3
It truly was. He deemed it two of the best weeks of his life. And he's already gotten together with some of the new friends he's made. Like I said...jealous! :)Delete
It wasn't quite the bang we wanted, but they got 2 trophies. One for best record in the league, making them #1, and one for being 2nd in the championship.
Aw, thanks. We're trying our very best. As pretty much all parents do. :)
Great post. There is nothing quite like the feeling of coming home and having all of your brood home safe under your roof. I love that. Sounds like your kids are doing some amazing things and that is definitely a nod to you and Bryan - the kind of people and parents you are. I'm glad to "know" you.ReplyDelete
It is a relief to have everyone home, especially since I know it won't last much longer.Delete
They are branching out into the world and taking lots of opportunities. I'm glad they have those opportunities.
You're making me blush. ;) Glad to know you, too!
I am happy, as well, when my children and their others, are here and the family unit is whole for a brief time, anyway.ReplyDelete