Sunday, May 22, 2011

Not much to say

I keep meaning to post but each time I sit down and write I end up never publishing it. Usually its because its lots of random thoughts that don't really have a theme. As you may have noticed, I like themes when I write. A lot of what I have had to write about is in regards to Sam and his surgery. Obviously, because he and his half a ticker are so heavy on my heart. I did get to speak to Jaime on Saturday and its was great. We ended up talking about lighter, funny neighborhood stuff and it was great to hear her voice and contagious laugh again! I am praying that Sam's low potassium issue and chest tube drainage stop soon so he can come home. It feels so lonely with our beloved next door neighbors gone!
Makenna and Avery, Jaime's girls spent the night Friday. We had a pizza party with them and some other kids in the neighboorhood and ice cream sundaes. They were all really well behaved. Then it was off to the Howard Street Hustle, a 5K fundraiser for the Kalamazoo Christian schools on Saturday morning. The kids all did the fun run. Matthew, Makenna and Caroline ran one lap of the track while Avery did two! All of the kids ran the WHOLE WAY!! It was a little crazy there but a beautiful day!! I felt really weepy there. Sad that Jaime and Steve have to miss stuff like that. I know its so very hard for them but they have no choice. Thankfully there are so many people who love those girls like their own and we try and make things has fun and normal for them as possible. Continue to pray for them as week two of their parents being gone starts.
Only one more week of school for Matthew who is anything but sad to see it ending. That kid just doesn't like school. I can't really figure out why b/c he has a great teacher and lots of friends. So often when he is whining and carrying on in the morning I want to say.." Seriously kid, get over it! Its going to get so much worse than Young fives!" Nice...
Memorial Day is upon us next weekend and we have 5 yards of mulch being delivered on Friday. We're hoping to get our yard in shape. We also are trying to figure out what to do about the eye sore of a deck of ours. We're looking into a few options. If it were up to me and money was no object..I would tear that baby down and build a new one. Oh wait, I meant to say..I would hire someone to do that! I really love hiring things out. That way, they arrive you go out for the day and come home to a new deck, freshly painted kitchen, clean house..etc, etc! Too bad I married a man who wants to hire nothing out!
The pool we joined is opening next weekend. I am hoping for a nice day so we can go over and use it. I think we're all really going to enjoy it.
Finally, I have my WMU MSW program orientation this Thursday. I am beyond excited to get some details about what the next 20 months are going to look like for me.
Well for seemingly not having anything to say..I certainly did jabber on..
Have a wonderful week.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Ode to MOPS

Next Wednesday I will attend my last MOPS meeting and I think I may be a blubbering, pile of tears. For those of you who don't know what MOPS is, I will give you a quick tutorial. MOPS stands for Mothers of Preschoolers. So basically you can attend if you have an infant through kindergartener. When you go to a MOPS meeting several things can and do happen.
1. You get a break from your infant or how many ever kids your toting along with you. They are lovingly cared for by a group of fantastic volunteers called MOPPET workers. Bonus if you have older kids because they learn great Bible lessons, do awesome crafts and have a snack.
2. There is food. Delicious, high carb, high sugar, indulgent, who gives a crap about the baby weight from my 2 year old, cheesy casseroly goodness.
3. There is a great speaker who makes it seems, for the half hour in which she speaks, that anything is possible in the grandscape of mothering. You could be the best mom, disciplinarian, wife, cook, friend, couponer ever to set forth in Kalamazoo county.
4. If there isn't a speaker you get to make a cool craft like a bracelet that's beads describe the birth of Christ, a freezer meal, a Christmas ornament, etc.
5. You get to actually have a conversation with another mommy who is on the same journey of mothering young children, just like you. No pressure to look a certain way or say the right thing. You can just be you, as you shove your face full of egg casserole and drink endless cups of coffee.( with as much creamer as your cup will hold.
6. If your lucky enough to pop out another kid during your tenure as a MOPS mom, lovely other mommies bring you awesome homemade meals. Complete with desserts!
7.Ok, a serious one. If you don't know Christ, you will get to. If you do, you can't help but grow in your faith.
I have been going to Southridge MOPS for six years. Matthew was just a wee lad of six months when I began. I remember checking on him like a bajillion times those first meetings, certain that the kid couldn't be torn from me for TWO hours! Fast forward six years and two more kids later. Lets just say when I drop Ellie off and she cries, I basically throw a diaper at them and say.."Don't come and get me until I have finished my strudel!" Just kidding...kinda!
I have met some of my dearest friends through MOPS. I have learned much through my time spent on Steering as MOPPETS co-coordinator, Small group leader and Co-Hospitality member.
My faith has grown much through the speakers and relationships I have been blessed to be a part of.
I know next Fall, when the first and third Wednesdays roll around, I will ache for the fellowship that MOPS provided. But,I will also know that my time there is complete. While I was there, MOPS served me well. It provided a safe place to get a break and get a little more grounded in myself and in my faith. It well equipped me and now its time to get going to the next phase of this journey called motherhood. I know I will tuck my MOPS experience away deep in my heart and treasure it always.
Who knows, I might just come back someday and be one of those lovely ladies that sits and rocks that newborn and gently encourages a new mom to get the heck out of the nursery and into the meeting..her studel is waiting!

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Crap! I got in!

That is how I really felt when I got into Western Michigan's MSW program! Don't get me wrong,I did apply, so obviously I was happy to get in. This has been a long time in the making. I actually started the journey to MSW land back when I was a single lady, nannying in Chicago back in 2000. But,I decided that I really wanted nothing more than to be a dutiful wife and mother to the children that didn't even exist back then! I wish I could shake that girl by the shoulders and say, "Stupid it will be so much easier and you will want the options that this degree affords you!":) Fast foward eleven years and I have to do it with the three kids and a hubby to boot! Oh well, hindsight is twenty twenty as they say!
I am not going to lie. Starting in September, the next 20 months will be grueling. Getting my MSW will be a full time job. I am prayerful that I find good daycare situations for the kids. Matthew and Caroline will be in school half days next year but Ellie will obviously need full time daycare. I will only be able to do this if I am secure with a solid, loving caregiver. Matthew and Caroline will most likely be at one place and Ellie at another. I have always been able to depend on Jeff. I will need his help and support like never before. I will need to be ultra organized, consistent and driven to obtain this goal. Do I think I can do it? You bet every loaned dollar that I will borrow to pay for it:)
With all these changes coming up, I am going to be quiting my job at the retirement home. I want to spend the summer with my kids and we already have a lot planned that would make my weekend work there not possible. I will miss my oldies terribly. I will forever be indebted to them for their love and support and kindness. I plan on doing an internship at a retirement home b/c working at one has opened my eyes up to many of the unmet need that this population has.
The future is full of many possiblilites and challenges for me in the next 20 months.I hope to embrace them and learn from them and become a better person, mother, wife and Christian through it all.