- a HUGE development in my middle daughter, the one with Sensory Processing Disorder and likely on the autism spectrum
- baby powder
- nail polish
- a mysterious name on the wall
If you are friends with me on Facebook and can keep track of things since Facebook made their recent formatting changes, you may already know about the baby powder. That's OK. There will be some redundancy over the next several blog posts because I will be recapping all my Facebook posts for my aunt. (Hi, Aunt Charla!) This blog is one of the ways that she keeps up with the family, and since phone time is often challenging with our schedules and the kids, I'm going to re-post everything in chronological order. In my Facebook versus Blogging series, blogging will eventually win. I'm getting tired of feeling sucked in to Facebook and not really having anything productive come away from that time.
So, what have I been thinking so seriously about this year? In a nutshell, here goes...
January 19, 1997, was the day my mom was diagnosed with cancer. The date is etched in my mind and in my heart. She fought that battle for two-and-a-half years. I spent so much of my youth being angry with her for one reason or another that I struggle to find the good memories. I have some and am thankful for those.
My youngest daughter was due to be born on January 21, 2006, but made her appearance mid-day on January 19. Praise God for bringing me joy on that day! This year, January 19, 2011, the most dear, sweet, humble, and faithful woman I have ever known met her Maker and Savior face to face. There is deep sadness in that joy and I still can't write about it without crying. Every day that I think about her, I feel like I didn't know her well enough, didn't learn enough from her, and I wish I had.
We finished the best year of homeschooling yet... Last "school year" was the easiest and met with the least resistance. All the kids were mostly enthusiastic and we started summer with a plan to keep going with some things through the summer. The warm weather came and stayed and the pool beckoned us. We went. We had fun. We love summer. We didn't keep up with our plans, though. September arrived with a struggle to get started again. The hardest year before was when I had one in third-grade, one in kindergarten, and a toddler.
This year is sixth, third, and kindergarten. Let's just say I don't enjoy kindergarten or third-grade at all. I don't know why, but those years bring difficulty to me. Teaching a child to read is very hard for me. I want to just pour the information in, but that isn't how learning to read happens. A child with a short attention span and little patience doesn't make it any easier. She memorizes books the first, second, maybe third (if I'm lucky) time she sits through them, so then she's not really "reading" them - she doesn't even look at the words. Third grade brings new attitude to the table. Since this is my daughter who thinks the world is set up to make her miserable, anything I make her do that she doesn't want to do must be because I hate her. Really? At 8-years old she is starting with this attitude? Some days seem much longer than others. Now we are three months into our school year and are switching things up a bit and making some changes by combining history and literature. One of the great things about homeschooling is that if something isn't working well for any one of us, we can make those changes.
Couple these things with my scrapbooking group dissolving and my knitting group (which I joined to replace the scrapbooking night out) having various interruptions (not meeting for several weeks, or even months, at a time) and it makes for a very stressed and tired me! So, what's best for fighting stress and exhaustion? More activity, right? A neighbor and I started walking early in the mornings before the families wake up. It's been very helpful, even considering that I am a night owl and am hatching into an early bird instead. The one-hour, three-miles a day walk has been good for me, but I'd still like a relaxing evening out with a group of other moms.
A couple months ago an old acquaintance from high school committed suicide. How's that for transition from one paragraph to the next? The thing is, that's how suicide affects a person. It's sudden and there is little preparation for those who go on living. There's a bigger story here and I don't know whether or not share it on my blog. No, I don't know the details of his death and what led up to it. I just know my thoughts on it. I want to be sensitive to those who read my blog who also knew him; yet, I think it's a topic that needs to be put out there. I have a few neighbors who have had suicidal tendencies affect their lives recently. (I won't blog about them.) Obviously, though, this has been on my mind. I'm pretty sure I think about it several days a week, whether or not to write about it and how it has affected me, that is.
I've been laughing more since I started walking in the mornings. The rush of endorphins first thing in the morning has been good for me and for my family.
So, I'm curious... What do you do for stress relief?