Tuesday, November 26, 2013



This is a little girl who, though sick, simply would not take a nap. Late afternoon found her falling asleep in her pizza (doesn’t a black and white photo turn pizza into magic?). She was sick. And scraggly. And covered in pizza mess. Swaying back and forth in her chair—head bobbing all over the place. It was quite darling, mostly because I don’t think that has ever happened before. Unfortunately, I couldn’t put her in her bed at 4pm (unless I wanted to be up all night), and she caught her second wind by the time evening rolled around…

Yes, it was a miserable sick week last week. By Friday, I was a bit of a wreck and let it all out here.

Then my friend Danielle wrote this lovely open letter at her blog: Dear weary mom who finds herself underwater.

“[T]his is where we do the hard work of not giving up.  We remember sailors in a fierce storm don't worry so much about their heading, but instead focus more completely on keeping their ship intact.  We count each little blessing and believe progress is being made, even though we can't imagine how.  This is where we choose to believe the friends who surround us with love, and verbally affirm all that we are already doing well.”

Speaking of friends who surround us with love, I felt the love poured out here in the comments and on my facebook page. My friend Lori wrote these words of affirmation:

“My beautiful friend, I see you are mourning the loss of a dream. Little girls who dream, grow up to be women with vision. But, oh my, what a quantum leap it is to from dream to vision. The difference between dreams and vision is faith. Dreams are planned so that you may control them, vision is laid out before you sometimes just one hour at a time so that you feel you are walking in complete darkness. Vision is put in place by faith, eternal priorities, and hard work. Just look at the beautiful priorities you have in place.

1. God
2. family,
3. friends,
4. education,
5. photography and other artistic endeavors

The world would turn those priorities upside down, but you do not. You are investing in eternity right now, as you care for sick children, educate four precious and precocious children, clean up after hurricane Lola, and order pizza for dinner because you know if you don't order pizza you will end up so sick that you will not be able to care for yourself or anyone else.

You may feel in over your head, but you are not in over His head and from my perspective you are no longer a woman with dreams, but a woman with vision. Perhaps the blub, blub, blub, is you walking on water...”

Ah, the glorious blessings of friends and family who are there to lift us up when we are down!

And then…respite.

That night Russ sent me to the studio to watch a movie by myself while he finished getting the kids to bed. Ahhh. I got to bed at a decent hour and *slept all night*. Russ left early-ish Saturday morning for swim coaching with Levi and Luke, but Leif and Lola slept I did also. Ahhh. I made chocolate crescent rolls and hot chocolate with whipped cream for breakfast. My mom and my sister both offered to take the kids for a while. Leif and Lola ended spending the rest of the morning and early afternoon at my mom's, playing outside in the sunshine with Poppy. Russ cleaned my fridge and freezer when he got home. I showered (yes, this is important). I entered all the library books onto our book list and returned a huge stack before heading to Costco where I bought a bunch of fruits and veggies (and a bag of dark-chocolate-drizzled sea salt kettle corn). I spent the next six hours working on cleaning/straightening/organizing projects (while my husband worked on a project for a client, and the boys spent some time outside). My dear friend, Olive, came over and spent a couple hours cleaning my kitchen and floors. We sat down as a family to eat a nice (Costco) lasagna dinner. Laundry was (sorta) caught up and put away. Dishes were done. Kids bathed and in bed by eight. Dinner was planned for Sunday. I enjoyed a Dr. Pepper with my kettle corn while I read a book and watched a movie with Russ. AND I scheduled a date night for next weekend, too. I might manage to see Catching Fire *in the theater*.

Sunday we stayed home from church (still trying to recover from this bug) and did very little. Monday was a lighter schedule due to Thanksgiving break with CC. The boys had only choir and archery. While waiting for the boys to finish choir class, I started Divergent. Oh, that probably wasn’t a great idea. Well, it felt right at the time, but a 2am bed time is weighing on me a little today. {yawn}

And some recent funnies from my kids (and husband):

Lola: "Zombies love me. I hud and tiss dem." (I hug and kiss them.)
Me: "Lola, you are turning your mother into a zombie. It's a good thing I love you."

Me (as I’m handing Lola a plate of food): “It’s very hot. Don’t eat it yet.”
Lola: “It’s not hot.”
Me: “Yes, it is, honey. It will burn your mouth.”
Lola immediately takes a bite. Her eyes open wide and her body shudders. She manages to swallow.
Lola: “It didn’t.”
(Why are they always so stoic when they know it’s their own fault?)

(At a new dentist office Luke begs to be first in the chair for x-rays.)
Luke: (with a most enthusiastic grin) “Are you going to strap me down?”
Assistant: (with a bemused smile) “No.”
Luke: “*Can* you strap me down?!”
(Sheesh. Sometimes I do not know what planet this kid is from.)

Me: “Honey, asking Levi to be non-emotional is like asking a fish to walk.”
Russ: “Levi would tell you that some fish *can* walk.”
Me: Sigh. “And the thing you two have in common is that you both immediately think of the exception to every rule.”

Seriously, how did I end up in a family with these daring, independent, rule-bending, audacious, loop-hole-finding people?!!

But they are so cute.


(I’ll have to write a post about Levi soon. I’m trying to figure out how to survive his ENFP personality.)

And…in other random news…it has been freezing here lately. The other morning it was 21 degrees at 7 am. The boys have been finding sheets of ice in various places outside. I’m not accustomed to the cold, but the bright sun has been a nice change. This time of year can be so gray and dreary.


And now I am going to attempt to be in bed before 10 pm!


Danielle said...

I love your blog and have been reading it before I had kids. You DO seem like Wonder Woman to me, and thanks for sharing so much in your last post. It's actually good to know others feel the strain of trying to balance this whole life/school thing. :)

Divergent. Would love to know your thoughts. I've been wondering if I should read it or if it'll be too much like The Hunger Games.

Heidi said...

Divergent is very similar in feel to The Hunger Games with a tad more romance. :) If you loved HG, you'll most likely love Divergent. If not--not. ;) Though I heard (*after* I finished Divergent, of course) that the 3rd book is awful, so you should know that going in.

Heather said...

I didn't comment on your previous post, but I did pray for you and all of us and appreciated your candor. I love coming here so you thank you for keeping this place going when it could be so easy to just stop. You have been one of my favorite blogs for a long time now and in some ways I feel like I know you better than some of my friends in real life because of how you craft your posts. Love you, Heidi and your family! xo

Jaime said...

I'm so glad you got some rest and a chance to catch up on tasks that were stressing you out. I don't deal well with chaos myself, so I understand where you're coming from. Bringing order from chaos is a glorious thing!
We are in our 3rd year of a relatively classical education, though not through CC. I've often looked at your lists and curriculum and thought I'm not doing enough, but then God reminds me that I'm doing what He called me to. You are doing what He's called you to also, and He will give you the strength to do what He's called you to.
I'm so glad you posted about the hard times, and that you were able to call on family and friends to help out during a tough time. I'll be praying for a full recovery for you and yours. Happy Thanksgiving!

Kellie said...

Well, if I weren't underwater too, I wouldn't be reading your last 6 posts all in one shot, and I would have commented last week about how I love your realness and think it makes you even more beautiful. Your blog is a treasure and I am blessed from reading it as well as the responses to your "underwater" posts.

Danielle said...