Wednesday, May 13, 2015

While I Was Away...

Over the last month our internet connection has been hit or miss and I have not posted in that time. At first it started out with busyness - I had to take this child here, and that child there. I had to be on the phone for long periods of time figuring out about doctor appointments.

Then it became about perfectionism. I didn't have pictures to go with a post, or I wasn't quite happy with a post, or I just didn't  feel what I was writing.

As Lee's Granny would say, "Hogwash."

Since I am a recovering perfectionist sometimes I have setbacks and I suppose this was one. So, here's a quick over-view of what's been going on in the Shepherd Abode for the last month:

I have been reading this book:

I cannot recommend it more highly. I love Joanne Weaver's honest, straightforward look at herself. It allows the reader to do the same. I read the first book in this series, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, a really, really long time ago. I think I only had two little girls then. This one, Having a Mary Spirit, has been just what I needed. I find myself re-reading chapters, digging deeper into the questions, and just generally enjoying being introspective.

Sightseeing around my hometown:

Every time we have moved to a new city the first thing the kids and I do is scope out the library. Then we begin to explore our new town. It's always funny to me that the natives rarely take advantage of the unique offerings in their own hometown. Now that we're living back in Lexington, I am recognizing how easily that happens. 

Now, I know that because I was born and raised in Lexington I have a skewed view, but I really think that it is one of the most beautiful cities in the country. It also has quite a distinct personality, and I love that, too. 

Some of our favorite places to explore so far have been the Lexington Cemetery, McConnell Springs, and the University of Kentucky's Art Museum.

These are some of the (not greatest) pictures from our day at Lexington Cemetery:

He insisted on wearing this tie for days. Five year olds are awesome.

Wallowing in self pity:

Well, just a little bit of that. I really miss working at the library in Tell City, and I really miss my friends there. Moving is hard because you can't take your friends with you. You can, of course, talk to them on the phone and go visit them, but that can take away from time spent getting acclimated to your new city and meeting potential friends. Instead of showing you pictures of me wallowing I'll show you what I do when I start to feel wallow-y:

This is a screen shot of a village I found. I pretend it's real.

I play Minecraft. I don't even care if the whole world knows. I want the whole world to know. I think that Minecraft is so fun. I can stress mine and it doesn't cost me calories. I can build my own home out of materials that I choose, or in survival mode that I have gathered, and there are no dirty dishes or piles of laundry. It's pretty great. On my survival world I have worked very hard to create a safe environment, keep up with my farms, and explore the area. I've only been killed by lava once. On my creative world I have filled it with sheep that I dye blue, cyan, and pink. I highly recommend Minecraft.

I let Liam, the five year old, play with me, too, but he does weird things like cover my house in vines. I really like to mine. My friend Deirdre also likes to mine and sometimes when we call each other we talk about our day in Minecraft. I'm thinking of starting a group for Minecraft Moms. We'll see. On a sad  note, I accidentally killed my pet pig (in Minecraft) four days ago. I wanted to feed him a carrot but didn't realize I was holding an iron sword. The squealing noise he made before his demise is still ringing in my ears. 

Moving on before I get the itch to go play.

Doing school at the library:

And making a bad name for homeschoolers everywhere. Homeschooling in public is just different than homeschooling, well, at home. There's a little bit more pressure, for sure. Especially when people passing by whisper, "I think they're homeschooling,".  It kind of makes you feel like a zoo animal. I have found that there are two thoughts when it comes to homeschoolers.  There is group a) that has the false belief that all homeschoolers are geniuses, and then group b) that has the false belief that all homeschoolers are completely ignorant. Thus, the pressure to prove Group A correct and Group B wrong can be insurmountable. 

I don't get the feeling the librarians enjoy having us at the library, either, but I could be wrong. I mean, generally people smile when they are pleased to see you, right? Especially when you come twice at week at the same time. 

There was a train table incident, but surely they don't hold grudges.

Seriously, though, library clerks across America, smile for Pete's sake. You look happier that way.

Trying to find things I lost in the move:

I cannot find my awesome spelling curriculum, All About Spelling, the only thing that is helping my dyslexic children learn to spell. I also cannot find three of the math books that I need for the upcoming year. I am certain they are in the same box. I am even more certain, after emptying out our 10x10 storage unit that I am not going to find them. I am also almost equally certain that the minute I order new stuff  I will find it all. 

The fam was super supportive the first few weeks I began looking. Now if they can't find me they just assume I'm tearing through stuff looking. I've even gone so far as to accuse people of hiding it so they don't have to do spelling. I was so careful when we packed. I labeled methodically.

Where is my spelling stuff??????

Okay, moving on again.

Getting caught up in school:

Well, that's not really a thing, is it? No one gets 'caught up' in school. We moved in January so most of December was spent packing. My dad had open heart surgery six days after we moved in, so January was practically a lost cause. My high school age daughters did an excellent job of staying on top of math, science, and foreign language, though. We are in ancient history this year (Year 1 of Tapestry of Grace) which I'm enjoying this go round. Studying ancient culture makes me super thankful to have been born in 1973, though, seriously. We haven't done any big art projects this year, though, and I am feeling guilty. I wanted to make a giant paper mache bull because the Minoans were really into bulls. Kiley, my 17 year old daughter who is in charge of making art things happen, thought I wanted to make a giant bowl, though. Once we figured out why our ideas weren't making sense to the other we moved on. 

Wondering about choices I've made:

I am not sure if it's because I'm 41, or if because I've had more time on my hands than usual, or if it's because I'm back in my childhood home, but I find myself just pondering over all the choices that I've made. I've got to tell you, that is no good. It has been interesting pondering the why of some of my choices but I figured out real quick that pondering the what ifs  was going to lead straight to a tub of Ben and Jerry's. I've read it a million times, heard it in sermons, and believe it's true: you have to study where you've been to figure out where you're going. I know that's true, and I think it's healthy. There are some places in my life I do not ever want to re-visit but I can say I am grateful for every experience because it's all helped shape who I am today, and where I am today. Putting too much time into wondering what would have happened if just leads to fiction, though. I like to write fiction, not live it. I'm in a full color documentary, man, and I'm choosing to be happy with it.

So eat that, ghost of Christmas past.

Enjoying attending church:

I've wondered for the past 13 years what it would look like if my husband was not employed by the church. Would we still want to go? What would it feel like to sit as a family in church?

Well, it feels much the same, but also much different. We tried a few different churches before we found the one that felt like home. We fumbled our way through explaining who we were and how we'd gotten there and before we knew it we had a church family again. Easy peasy. Right as rain.

This is something I love about being a Christ-follower: you always have people. They may not look like you, talk like you, dress like you, or even eat like you do, but God's people are God's people anywhere you go. When you love Jesus it is impossible not to love his followers and treat them like family. (I would also like to note that when you love Jesus it is is impossible not to love the non-followers, too. You're not doing it right if that's not the case.)

So, that's it, for the most part. I'll leave you with one of the other things I've been doing when I should be doing other things:

TTYS, peeps.

See how down I am with the young folk?

1 comment:

  1. Hi Kara,

    We're the same age, and I ponder life matters some days too.

    I grinned at the five year old in a tie for several days, and nodded yes, thinking of my own small one.

    Re the words and the perfection trap... I understand that and found it hard to get back into blogging again too.

    Jennifer Dougan