Thursday, August 6, 2009

Thanks to Spencer, Stefan and I were actually captured together for once!

I wrote previously on here about my intention for starting this blog. So that change has happened, actually just happened not even a week ago yet, and we here at my house are trying to adjust to the difference. I am so sad about it, but I am happy, or trying to be happy for Josh and Emily. I have kind of taken the summer off from writing on here, and I have missed it a bit, but then I always second guess myself and wonder, who is really wanting to read all about our life and see the pictures of what we do each week?? Now that I have taken such a long time off from writing, I will have to wait to see that counter number off to the right increase in number. AND, I love it when people comment or follow, so do what you wish, but I do wonder who is reading all this stuff!

I thought summers were supposed to be s-l-o-w-e-r than the everyday hustle of the school year, and they usually are, but now that Stefan is home with us, too, we seem to be busier than we normally are, or it could just be managing three kids at home and making sure they are "well-rounded"! It's August now, and I am beginning torture my boys by making them do some mandatory school stuff (math, reading, writing, etc.)...just pure torture, and if you ask them, NOBODY else has to do this. Then I remind them that they really don't want to be trying to catch up, and they just buckle down and do it. They are doing well, and it would appear that I am more nervous about 3rd grade and kindergarten than the actual students are. Does every mom feel this way?

We have done a lot this summer, but we have kind of stayed close to home. Our list of adventures have included the beach, the pool, the zoo, county fair, up north, LOTS of playing outside with friends, walks, bike rides, bonfires and s'mores, and some home improvement projects. I think it's been really good for us as a family to be home all together. I was worried about it in the weeks leading up to summer, but Stefan and I have really enjoyed being together and just kind of letting life happen (and staying up WAY too late and then sleeping in).

This week was one of those weeks that unfolded unexpectedly. We have been wanting to go to Mackinac, Michigan Adventure, Cedar Point, and really just anywhere that we don't have to look at our kitchen, get our mail, answer our home phone, etc. BUT...we can't do all of those things or we would really be broke, and let's face it, unless you can do them up right, places like Mackinac aren't fun on a shoestring budget. We need days people, to enjoy the island, and a hotel room for naps and such. So, we decided the back burner for that. We would like to wait until we have some crisp, fall air for Cedar Point (much more fun if you are taking an almost 8-year old) because let's face it, that aroma of sweaty people and french fries is hard to manage with sore feet and a boy who is experiencing the awesomeness of CP for the first time, and while both boys can have fun at Michigan Adventure, I'd like to wait a year or so in order to include Scarlet and be all together. Usually, the problem is securing enough vacation days to be together as a family. Now that Stefan has all the "vacation" he wants, the problem is finding all the funds to do everything we want to. We could be gone for weeks with the things we would like to do, and unfortunatetly we can't do everything on our list within three months! Boo.
Anyway, back to this week. We decided Monday afternoon, late afternoon, literally to head up north to the Tawas area on Lake Huron for a few days. We knew we would have to be back today for Slade to go to the dentist for a filling, but he luckily had a late afternoon appointment, and it's just about a 2-hour drive for us. SO, we threw everything together (food, clothes, kids) and jumped in the Envoy. The kids were a little stunned, they like getaways as much as they do, and I think next time we plan a trip, we won't tell them in advance because they were so happy about the surprise of leaving so fast. We really didn't have anything to do up there but just be together in a place that we didn't have to step on a million Lego pieces and tell the boys to clean up their rooms (over and over). We spent the following day on the beach, which the kids loved (just look at all the pictures), went to town and ate pizza and hung out together and hear live music on the streets, shopped in touristy stores (where each boy was granted their own real leather wallet and they collected business cards from everywhere we visited), Scarlet got a new pretty bracelet which she will enjoy showing off, and Stefan and I got to be together. We arrived back home late this afternoon (Slade's filling all done and went well), and then had an impromptu bonfire and s'mores and tag and hide and seek in the dark with some neighbor kids at our house. It was a great night. And one of the best things about the last few days....Sonic vanilla cokes (a diet coke version for me) on the way up north and back home again. Stefan and I love those things, and we agreed today they better not build one too close to our house or we might rot our teeth right out.

To me, this captures the kind of father-daughter relationship I so hope they have. I love this picture.

Looking ahead (notice I didn't say "looking forward") to some more changes....Going back to school is always a struggle, and for me, it's now less than a month away. Each summer, I typically start this grieving kind of process about now. That is setting in for me, as usual, but I am elated that I don't have to send my kids to daycare. I am all for daycare, home or center, if you need to use it. I don't fault a single person for putting kids in the care of someone else in order to provide an honest living for your family. But it was always very, very difficult for me to think of someone else loving on my babies and my kids not having their mom or dad to see them off to school directly from their own home, or someone else kissing them for naptime or cuddling with them when they were anxious or hurt. This year, while I do wish the economic situation was different/better, I am elated that it is Stefan, and not a stranger or even a friend or other relative, who will be the one to care of our kids and make sure it's all okay. Stefan and I are a great team, and we work well together, and lots of times, have the same thoughts about how to do stuff, and we definitely routines and similar (not identical!) ideas about what's what when it comes to our kids, so while I will be mourning the fact that it's not ME who gets to be the caretaker and stay at home with my baby girl, I feel much more peace about being gone during the daytime. Plus, I am geeked about not having to get a bunch of stuff ready for daycare and latchkey and give instructions, and get the kids up extra early and out the door. That is such a relief for me as a working mom! So, thank you, babe. You are going to do an awesome job with our kids, and I know I complain that it's not me, but you are handling it all really well, and I appreciate it very much. Make sure you talk about me a lot and send me phone updates and pictures all day. That helps.

I'm back in the swing of blogging now, but I have to go wash that bonfire smoke smell right out of my hair.


Jessica D. said...

great new photos! I like to read what's going on. Your on my blog list!

The Clifton Family said...

Great pictures :) I know what you mean about daycares. I feel soooooo blessed to be able to stay home with my darlings every day. So blessed. thanks for reminding me to be thankful even when it gets hairy :)