Saturday, August 30, 2008

week in review

It's been a busy week. I told Jill yesterday that that last hour we spent together at my table was the first time all week that I had just sat down and done something that I wanted to do. (with the exception of an hour or so of tv after the kids are all finally in bed)

That's a little bit sad, right?

Especially since it's not like I've been hugely productive in other ways. Rather, I just have a little Klingon that will not leave me alone for any reason.

On Monday I took her to the park for an hour and a half. I talked to Jessie on the phone for a good portion of that time, but it was still a hot and exhausting labor of love. After all, it's not easy to push someone on the swings while trying to hold your phone with your shoulder! That afternoon, I finally conquered cleaning the shutters on our main windows. They were disgusting and had been driving me crazy for weeks. Weeks, I tell you! I did that for two hours, but then I ran out of ammonia, so the rest of the shutters are still heinous. Apparently if I don't have ammonia, I just throw up my hands in defeat.

On Tuesday, I took Eva to my sweet neighbor Heidi's so I could go to BYU and attend their awards ceremony for the opening of the school year. Marc received an Alcuin award, which gives him a bit of recognition for all his hard work, plus a nice chunk of change in travel/supplies funding for the next 3 years. Well-deserved. (I'm not posting the photos I took of Marc on the stand out of deference to my husband. I try to do that occasionally.) It was a first for me sitting in the reserved floor seating of the Marriott Center. Oh, and I thought the President's talk went on about 20 minutes too long. I just could not seem to stay awake, a fact that Marc noticed from the stand. Oops.

Max & Lucas were sad that they didn't get to go. I don't know how much of that had to do with the fact that the ceremony took place during school hours... Marc's parents took us out to a Thai restaurant for lunch, where Eva proceeded to whine because she wanted noodles, not rice, and she wanted to talk to Grandma (read: monopolize) even though she needed prompts as to what she should talk to Grandma about. Grandpa pulled out some strawberries and cheese to round out her rice lunch, because of course he had a bag of groceries for us under the table!

Max's U.S. History class made these dollar bill rings. He wears it proudly, because evidently those suckers are harder than they look.

On Wednesday I went visiting teaching. My visiting teacher had already come, but as she didn't read the entire message, I was unaware that there was a passage I was in dire need of hearing:

“All of you need to drink in deeply the gospel truths about the eternal nature of your individual identity and the uniqueness of your personality. You need, more and more, to feel the perfect love which our Father in Heaven has for you and to sense the value he places upon you as an individual. Ponder upon these great truths, especially in those moments when (in the stillness of such anxiety as you may experience as an individual) you might otherwise wonder and be perplexed.” -- President Spencer W. Kimball

I LOVE this. It could not have come at a better time. Also, thanks to my temporary identity crisis during the last week, we had a lot to talk about. Just another testament to me that our trials -- even the fleeting and/or relatively insignificant ones -- shape us and endow us with an increase of empathy to share with others.

On Wednesday afternoon I weeded out and organized all of Eva's and Lucas's clothes. Why does it seem like this job is endless? I swear it needs to be done quarterly. Kids and their growing.

{in honor of my mother, my very favorite Black-Eyed Susan!}

I also did some yard work this week. I am thoroughly fed up with the 90-plus temperatures. I realize that it's still August, but since my kids have been in school for two weeks, I am just so ready for a little cooling off and a beginning, or a movement towards, a mere hint of Fall.

Max stayed home sick on Thursday, and even though it was my very craziest of busy days, I realized I had to take him to the doctor. I was glad I did, because it turns out he has a sinus infection and needed antibiotics. (Tell me I'm not the only mother out there who is relieved to get a diagnosis and prescription when I take my kids to the doctor's office!) On Friday morning, he sounded like he was going to cough up a lung, so I was doubly glad that I didn't wait. By the way, the doctor (not our usual one) asked if he had ever had a sinus infection. I couldn't stop myself from laughing -- they're our family specialty.

Lucas went on a field trip to the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival. He came home complaining that the walk to/from the festival was so short. I guess it just couldn't compare to last week's field trip to Timpanogos Cave. Incidentally, he told me that his group got separated from the pack while coming down the mountain and they did not have an adult with them, and that at one point they thought one of their class members had fallen off the edge of the mountain! He didn't, thankfully, but just the fact that that was even a possibility made me fearful in retrospect about the wisdom of this outing.

I received a great card from Jill on Thursday -- again just what I needed. She included this quote:

"Through her mothering, a woman is the consummate leader of leaders. If we truly believe that we are here in mortality to be tested and to demonstrate by the way we live our lives whether we want to be part of the kingdom of God or not, then what could possibly be more significant than bearing a child and thus making it possible for a spirit son or daughter to advance beyond the preparatory state of premortal life and enter the testing stage of earth life? And having borne that child, what could possibly be more enduring or important in the eyes of our Heavenly Father than nurturing one of His sons or daughters -- teaching and cheering that precious soul on, preparing him or her to pass the test?
Nothing. No diplomat or CEO or billionaire philanthropist does anything that comes anywhere close in importance to what a mother does. No trophy or status or honor of man begins to compare with motherhood in terms of its eternal impact and glory. Period." --Jane Clayson Johnson

My grandmother has told me essentially the same thing many times. Why is it so easy to forget?

We used the last of our diapers at bedtime on Thursday. (I had told Eva I wasn't going to buy anymore.) I didn't know if this was the right approach. I still don't. As expected, she informed me that she didn't want to wear underwear. I informed her that we were going to try it anyway. She put up a fuss, but finally came around when I proposed the bribery plan. The girl does love stickers and treats.

She also seems to have a bladder of steel. She has only gone 8 times in 2 days, should I be concerned? We went out to do errands today -- a marathon of Costco shopping (I know, on a
Saturday!) and a long sojourn at T.J. Maxx -- and she sailed through without incident, even using the unfamiliar bathroom at T.J. Maxx. I'm really crossing my fingers this time. I need to feel like this is all carrying us to a victorious end. Plus, she's starting preschool next week!

This morning I made nectarine/strawberry smoothies. I invented a nectarine smoothie years ago and it is one of my favorite things about summer. After I poured the glasses for the kids, I looked at the lineup and it made me giggle.

When I got back from Costco, I had an impromptu pantry reorganization and fridge/freezer clean-out. 3 garbage-bags full! It was like I channeled Jill for a couple of hours...

One final thought: I went out to the grocery store tonight for a few things we can't live without until Monday. I ran into a former neighbor that I haven't seen for a couple of years. Her youngest started first grade this year and I commented on her having all of her kids in school full-day. Are you ready for this? She said she's bored.

1. It's only been two weeks, people.
2. Never say something like that to a woman who still has a young child at home, particularly when that child is Eva and she's in the midst of potty-training! It fired me up pretty good.
3. I am never bored. Ever. I always always have more things that I want to do than time to do them.
4. When an adult tells me they are bored, my esteem for said adult drops somewhat. Maybe a little harsh, but it's true.

Bored! Well, at least I don't have that problem!


marc said...

Thanks for not posting an awards-stand picture. Having to stand up in front of all my peers two days in a row was enough punishment--especially knowing that the applause from colleagues is often laced with resentment.

Also, if Eva has a bladder of steel, she must get it from you.

Elizabeth said...

She must not be a reader. How can you be bored if there is a book waiting to be read?

Amy said...

Well, first of all, congratulations to Marc. Professional accolades are always nice, but I'm think they may be even nicer in his profession.

Which brings me to. . .your great quotes. You may not receive professional accolades, but there are people who appreciate what you do. Not only that, but they depend on you for what they will do with their lives, for who they will become.

And bored! Bored. I can't imagine saying something like that! Sometimes I feel a little restless because I don't know which of my myriad projects I want to work on next, but never bored-unless I'm doing something boring that I absolutely can't get out of. But then, I'm not in control of my time like a mother will all her kids in school is under those circumstances! I don't blame you for getting more than a little fired up!

lelly said...

i haven't been bored since i was thirteen years old! and even then, i think i only said i was just to annoy my parents...

April said...

With all that was in this post, the quotes you shared got me thinking that perhaps Marc will go to a big awards ceremony for you sometime in the next life...can you wait that long? You should get a special standing ovation just for the potty training.

I might have died right there in the grocery store...give me strength! I always ask David what it would be like to wake up with "nothing to do" and no particular plan in mind. I have a whole treasure chest of ideas in my mind of things I would do if my life "were my own."

I loved your week in review.

stacy{s} said...

I too am always shocked to hear the word "bored" out of an adults mouth. How could they be? Love the quotes you shared. Very needed by me this week.

patsy said...

Bored?- you should've slapped her-

Great post- great week wrap up. congrats to marc!

I wish I could channel jill for even 30 minutes, seriously I just don't want to clean... I had such high hopes for getting some deep cleaning done around here- but after recent events in my family it feels like such a waste of precious time.

thanks for the reminder VT message-somehow I had already forgotten it & need it too.

I hope the potty training keeps going well- :)
I love your blog- thanks for inspiring me so many times & in so many ways.

Jill said...

Wow, this is quite a post!

It bums me out that you've been so busy you haven't been able to do anything enjoyable all week until Creative Friday (even that was an exercise in smotherhood!).

Congratulations to Marc on winning that award! It would have been nice to see a picture with him in it, but now that he reads your blog all the time you have to concede to his wishes, ha.

I thought that part of the visiting teaching message was perfect for you, especially after reading your identity crisis post.

I'm delighted that you channeled me and had an impromptu pantry clean out, that must be why I felt so drained yesterday and had to take a long nap (either that or my lack of sleep from my camping trip).

I feel the same way you feel about women who say they are bored! Good grief! I am never, ever bored and don't understand that sort of thinking at all!

Mother said...

Sometimes, I think I would like to just see what it feels like to be bored! (But I probably wouldn't like it....)

That was a great week in review, especially enjoyed by me, your mother!

You are amazing.

Dad said...

Loved your "week in review". Nice quotes...Can't imagine you being bored!!

Bladder of steel???

Congratulations to Marc. (would like to have seen a photo...)

Denise said...

At first, when I saw the photo of the floral "Y," I thought it was a funeral arrangement! Eeek.

Quite the week, love the quotes, and I am eternally grateful that I am never bored.

Kath said...

I agree with you about the "bored" comment. How on earth? I always have something to do!
And, I truly empathize with you on the potty training front. I personally think it is one of the worst parts of having children.
Good luck!

Liz said...

Those smoothies look and sound super yummy!

Congrats to Marc for his award.

I hope the no diapers works! Jared has been doing great at his bathroom usage...but we still have fits about scary bathrooms (he thinks the giant toilet tissue things have two eyes that are staring at him!!). It is amazing how long they can hold their bladders if they don't want to pee!

I don't think I will be bored when my kids are all in school. I will have so much time to actually do what I want to do. At least I hope I will!

Hannah said...

Good review!

Congrats to Marc and how nice of Heidi to watch Eva so you could go and support him!

I have made those dollar rings before and they are tedious, so I wore/kept mine for a couple months I think.

Your quotes are fantastic, so great to start my week reading them.

And bored...I learned not to be bored early on when saying "I'm bored" meant extra chores to do, ha! An adult being bored is sad to me. I could take up my free time and two others with all the interests/passions/hobbies I have! Bored! That is just baffling.

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