Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Not everything is an emergency

Very wise words not spoken by me but by someone who knows from experience. Seriously. What is an emergency. Would saying "don't cry over spilled milk" be the old way of saying this? Perhaps the *crazy* word might be where we drive ourselves as not everything IS an emergency. When we had one kid or perhaps two and we don't teach THEM that not everything is an emergency and then more kids come along and soon everyone is thinking everything is an emergency, then this is a recipe for crazy. If I am not worried about the crumbs on the table right now it is is not an emergency. If I learn not to freak out over crumbs, then when my 6 month old has an allergic reaction I will be able to handle the actual emergency. THAT is an emergency but even then, staying in control is VERY important.

The perk of having nine or however many kids (not a contest or my salvation), is that there are so many things to be done, so many things which could be treated like an emergency, soon none of it is an emergency but simply the next thing we decide to give our attention to. Why am I sitting in this chair while weeds are choking out the garlic??? Because it isn't an emergency but hopefully I get to it soon. Why does it not give me an anxiety attack that the baby's diaper is looking a little ooshie??? Because I um.....know it is good for 25 to 30 pounds??? Or....I guess I must be neglectful or.....someone might have just spilled some milk and I am deciding if that is worth crying over???? I don't know. Calm. Learn how to chill and be quiet. I don't have to connect with people all the time. It is okay.

If I am crazy or anyone else is crazy, that isn't who they are. It is just how they might be tripping through life right now. Crazy can be quietly containing crazy inside. You never can tell. Sure, there are many who are *crazy* right now but building a sense of peace in not engaging in every movement and sentence uttered by the rest of the world is totally fine too. Perhaps that is the art of being private and feeling the need to throw up everything on everyone. Take care of those first vocations, mind your own vocation as a basic rule of thumb and happiness, and if you are *crazy* do what you can to take care of yourself. Take care of yourself. Yep. Go to bed, don't have anxiety attacks over the holes in your sons jeans which went in public is okay. Who cares. You don't have to care about that. It isn't an emergency.

Gave in to the laundry

That FlyLady person is always going on and on about how our bedrooms are our sanctuary. I bought into that mantra till yesterday. My living room is MY sanctuary and it has never seemed to stay clean laundry free. So....I decided to set up a laundry sorting station in our bedroom and finally be free of the mess in the living room which everyone sees and trips over the stuff anyway. It is far easier for me to contain that stuff in the bedroom anyway. So, the locals might get it in their head that I have becomes organized and am finally on top of the laundry, but in reality I am hoping to not be ON TOP of the laundry.

I had the boys set up my grandma's dining room table in my room. I am also on the hunt for a very small tv to set up on the table so I can go hide in there and watch my favorite movies while sorting. It also occurred to me that since it is a dining room table, I could even hide in there for a quiet, undisturbed meal. Well, undisturbed meal might be a stretch but still, there is that option.

We have an old home. It appears large but.....there are a lot of people bouncing around in here. My bedroom will be a sanctuary of a different sort.......I'm okay with that. I also am happy to give the illusion that all the laundry is done and put away. Yes.


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Looney tunes......

If it is of any encouragement to anyone, there are many days when I question how to get through the day. The only encouragement found in that I suppose is that you might not be alone.....breathe. Evan is feeling a bit under the weather today and is tired and cranky. Ingrid, Stefan and Benjamin are bored and loud. I am currently slowly trying to get them some things to keep them busy and not screaming so much.

I need to go to the store to get basics. Food helps their tummy wummies. It is hot and disgusting out and I am.....whining. Sigh. I will do my best to hold things together this day and press on. Sigh, sigh, sigh.....

Monday, July 25, 2011

VBS is not a sacrament

Inspired by someone on facebook who stated VBS is not a sacrament. My silly friend and I claimed the acronym and changed it's meaning.....Variety Beer Sampling. All this from laughing at our past lives as Sunday School Suckers....I mean Superintendents. Ugh. Hate that job. We decided to make this event come to life with a VBS part at my house with the theme of Gilligan's Island, dress as your favorite character. VBS takes on a much more relaxing tone when it stands for Variety Beer Sampling. Adults were asked to bring a variety of beer which either they had never tried or one which might be their favorite to share. In the case of Gilligan's Island I thought we could probably have martinis with little umbrellas in honor of the Howells but no one was that organized and I was too tired. The kids had a blast watching Gilligan's Island, the adults had fun doing what adults might do at this variety of VBS (far more fun than the other variety), and we skipped worrying about the tikki (? spelling?) lanterns as it was too hot and miserable outside to leave the comfort of the TV room.

Only Lutherans could have this variety of VBS. I am so happy to be Lutheran and enjoying God's good gifts. You should try VBS at your church or the home of a parishioner too tired to care what happens at a party hosted by people who don't live at their house.... (grammar nazis may help with that sentence or lack of sentence if you wish.....too tired to care).

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A twenty year study

Today marked yet another day of comedy in my life as a mommy. A friend of mine went with me to IKEA today before picking up my in-laws and of course we had a rockin' time. While standing in line to get our lunch of smoked salmon and sinful chocolate cake, my friend was holding my little Evan with her baby sling. Apparently, unbeknown to either of us, Evan had a snotty nose and a lady behind us felt the need to inform us and help the dear child. I can not help but giggle when this happens as I know they are trying to help, but seriously I have always let other people's babies noses be their own mothers business and left to their comfort zone. My friend picked up the end of the baby sling and used it to wipe his nose and politely said thank you.

So....we two mommies with Evan proceeded to the check out and found our seats. I took the Evans so he could have his mommy time. The mom who helped us was seated not too far away. My more obnoxious side of course kicked in and so did my friends. I was giggling that she had been carrying him and *I* was the one who took him to nurse him. She feeling equally ornery suggested that when I was done with him, she would take him and nurse him too. Wouldn't THAT raise the hair on their heads. My brain then tripped on to inform my dear friend that we could freak them out and I could call her honey and then ask the helpful mom to take our picture. Oh dear. Karin should NOT be let out alone......or alone with equally odd friends....

Things people share with you in public about your children crack me up. Little do they know I have been doing a quiet study of this for twenty some odd years and am merely amused by what they come up with to help you with. I used to be defensive or offended but now I just start to crack up and smile sweetly at them. I figure that if I experiment with my responses to helpful comments I will eventually find the right response. Of course most people in public now assume Evan is my first since the older ones do not need to be drug out with me all over the place. I have vivid memories of trying hard to appear like a confident mother of my sweet ickle wittle Anna when she was an infant and the time I was outside J.C. Pennies and I had forgotten to buckle her little self in the carriage and......she started to fall out the front. Of course two older women just happened to be walking towards me as I dumped my baby on the pavement and looked askance at me. Not full of class and style. I have never mastered class and style EVER with small children. I am ALWAYS being *helped* by people. I have the "this woman needs help" tattoo on my forehead. It must be there. Everyone has just been too nice to point blank judge me for my tattoo. Seriously.

So.....I think my nursing buddy and I need to try our outing again and mess with people a bit. Or perhaps that isn't very nice but it would give them something to talk about anyway.....

Friday, July 22, 2011

I'm in the bathroom

Do you ever notice that if you need someone to do something that they are in the bathroom. If you want them to begin doing something for you....they need to go to the bathroom. I personally noticed that I wish my dog knew how to go to the bathroom. He is old. I came home from taking my dear sons to their favorite bike store to find that the rest of the kids were upstairs and the dog had peed all over the house since.....he doesn't know how to use the bathroom. I am not sure what to think of everyone's need to be in the bathroom or doing bathroom things all over the house. Why? My house is a wreck.....time to go to the bathroom.

The kid I want to be in the bathroom is never there.

There are times when going to the bathroom comes in handy right? Like when you need to have an excuse to get off the couch or try harder to get to sleep at night.....
If you are a kid and you know that you don't feel like doing your math.....go to the bathroom. If you know your parents won't appreciate the kitchen in disarray and they come home an hour earlier than they said they were going to......go to the bathroom. Then you can say that you are in the bathroom when they ask where you are and it will appear that you couldn't clean the kitchen were in the bathroom.

I have hidden in the bathroom when I don't feel like making small talk or the kids just wiggled and whined and screamed all day long and they might be hungry or tired now and I am too worn out to cook dinner but they are not convinced by the spoonful of peanut butter that I offer them to buy me time. I need to go to the bathroom.....

When school is on a roll and I have their attention and things are going well....that is when I really need to go to the bathroom. Sigh. Lose them in the process.

Kids love to need to go to the bathroom right after you have gone far away from the warming shelter while sledding. You go to the beach and tromp down to the water and some kid....needs to go to the bathroom. There are the times you take a risk and go shopping with some kids and you are just starting to enjoy yourself when....they need to go to the bathroom.

I better stop writing this......or....

and....if you need me.....I'm in the......

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Easter Shoes

Ha ha of the day. We were scrambling around trying to find everyone a pair of shoes to wear to church this evening and Benjamin couldn't find his shoes....thus the scrambling. I told him to just go in his socks. He looks up at me and asks, "Can I wear my Easter shoes???" ????? Easter shoes??? Then I remembered that I had gotten a pair of light weight summer shoes to wear to church. Argh. Easter shoes??!!!! The boy had not worn them since Easter Sunday as he thought they were just for wearing on Easter. My children are so literal. I am sure I must have said I bought him some new shoes to wear on Easter. How do I learn to speak in a way which will not be taken in Amelia Bedelia style??? Benjamin has two pairs of shoes to chose from...if he can find them.

Passive agressive behavior

Makes me nuts. Once upon a time there was this lovely family who was capable of doing massive quantities of basic household slave labor. It is the way with all small children and large children and those in between to wait eagerly for their dear mother to leave so they can......go back to bed and read. So the mother and all the little kiddos stuff, toys, laundry, socks, cute little underwear, food flotsam, dirt from outside......just gets worse. What is a mother of passive aggressive children to do???? I could buy them ice cream and take them to the pool so the sweaty, tired mommy gets what SHE wants and suffers no expense of her needs at the hands of children who might make her eyes cross quite frequently. (was that a sentence???). I could put on some rock and roll or raucous classical music and put them to task under my evil supervision (most likely will happen later). I could call a friend and go to lunch.....can't do that.....maybe coffee in the morning..... I could book a flight to California and hope for the best. Hmmmm......

My little self wants to accomplish.....weeded beautiful garden with yummy veges, school stuff organized and ready to go, read lots of books, find the house, get rid of fifty percent more of the stuff around here......cook lots of yummy healthy food, practice my horn, snuggle with smallest humanoids and gaze into their eyes, go to the beach and take a long walk, the list goes on......can't do it all.

Sleep. Perhaps I will start there.....


When will I learn to go to bed earlier and not read, or talk with the daughter on the phone, or talk to the rest of the my kids late at night??? I know that sleep will not necessarily happen with zee bebe who unpredictably gets up, the geriatric dog who might need something, the asthma child who might need something, my own sometimes inability to sleep, and then......I regret not getting more sleep. With nothing on my plate this morning I was hoping for the chance to sleep in but then I forget all the rest of the possible interruptions. 4:30am dear little one gets up. Is it teeth again? Asthma child was mad last night so I could not get him to take his allergy meds after he stomped off and fell deeply asleep....non-restful breathing from upstairs.

Well, they are all up once again now. I am contemplating my next move. Hmmmm.....twelve hours till perhaps I behave myself and go to bed!!!?????

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Weeding addiction continues

I should post pictures of the result. The kids actually made great headway on the vegetable garden this morning. It is looking pretty good. Now I am trying to tackle the mulching so we don't have to weed quite so often. Buckets of sweat pour off and of course now I have a headache. I still want to get back outside and weed some more. Sweat equals a certain degree of mind weeding too. Helps. There is much on the brain with most of it good so....keep weeding.

We try to chill out at the pool almost every afternoon to cool off a bit. I could just live in the pool. Seeing all the young girls in their bikinis almost makes me want to find one to go.....weed in. Don't drive by. I haven't done nearly enough sit ups.......oops.....perhaps I shouldn't do that.

Daughter dear is back from Aspen or rather back in California. She has had a great summer. Perhaps I am getting used to talking to her on the phone. Sigh. No doubt I need to get pretty used to that.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Missing my slaves

Aka children. Three are at Higher Things this week, which is always very awesome for them, and one if spending her summer away. This week reminds me of the good ol' days when no one was quite old enough to watch the baby, the lawn was a foot high, the dishes were always behind, the floors were disgusting, the laundry piled high. Or.....was it? I don't really remember but my older kids are very helpful and things usually appear more put together than now. I am practicing my "I can't worry too much about this" mode. husband has been gone all week too so that just adds to the paralyzing atmosphere. He usually puts most of the short people to bed. He is also good for baby holding and calling the escape artists back to the kitchen to clean up the chaos in there.

When everyone returns they won't know what hit them. I will seriously not care if they don't do anything but watch the little ickle Evans and keep him out of harms way, if I can only move around a bit and attack the needs. Exhausted husband returns this evening and kids tomorrow night. Anna doesn't return till mid August, if only just for a few weeks or less.

Monday, July 11, 2011

My kids dressing the baby

I spend a lot of time weeding out (there is the weeding word again) the clothes which are too small for Evan. Somehow they get back in the laundry and back in his drawer. He has plenty of clothes but when I send my young men to get the little feller dressed, they reappear with clothes which are WAY too small and squished on his body. They pause and look at me, "So Mom, is this outfit okay?" as my eyes glaze over. I do get perplexed they can't see the onesie stretched over his body and him looking nice and content in spite of it all. I will try to reweed the drawer again and quickly remove it.

These clothes also end up drawer, Charley's drawer and everyone else's drawer. Big kids stuff in little kids drawers and then the best thing is.....the kids put these clothes on and don't notice?????!!!!! But Mom! That shirt WAS Martins! Um.....yes, three or four years ago!

Laundry sorting turns into a scavenger hunt. Gotta love it. So ends another post on my exciting life.

Next coffee discovery

I was thinking about coffee with cinnamon and when I was out weeding etc., walked by my chocolate mint plant, it came to mind that crushing up some leaves and putting those in with my coffee might work. It did. It was yummy. Try it. You will like it. If you don't like it, that is okay with me too. :P


So Karin has developed a high disdain of gossip and.....I could write a comedy sketch on some aspects. My current cute little, theory is that gossip has been around a long time (duh) but that the internet has compelled us to make the old phrase "none of your business" defunct or something. Guarding ourselves from not having to chime in and give our opinions about everything is certainly a trick but.....things like facebook (which I do enjoy) and blogs (which I do enjoy) can encourage us to stick our nose in more than perhaps is helpful. We don't have to help everyone *get it* in life. We are separate people and separate families and that is okay. I'm beating a dead horse on this theme but seriously, the freedom to bash and form opinions of what is best for other people, other people's vocation choices and how they manage their lives is simply amazing. If we think we are doing the best managing our own lives and are offended by other people saying what they think we are up to, then it just doesn't seem to translate to respecting other people's lives, vocations, family decision etc.

Examples - what music people listen to and enjoy. NOT my problem.

How someone is managing their children and marriage.....feel free to pray but meddling in other people's business during a party for entertainment(????) or to make ourselves feel better about ourselves is just......sort of not recommended.

Healthy boundaries are just a good thing. Be who you are and be happy for yourself??? Repent???? Yep. If someone else does not handle their life as perfectly as you???? Lol!!!!! Repent of your evaluating skills!!! We all do it. This is one reason I love a good bike ride alone where I can reflect on how things are going etc and continue to work on the boundary job. So....when Karin knows everything, make sure to give me the popularity award. Ha ha....I am laughing! If you can't laugh at yourself.....well.....good luck with that.

This is directed at.....ME! Continued reflecting on Mr. Not Always Very Obvious.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Kids coming and going

Last week was um......interesting. I am very happy for my Scouts who had an awesome week at camp though. Matthew was acting up a storm which fortunately was caught on video tape for the final campfire. Martin spent the campfire as Harry Potter himself. I am wondering if any of that got caught on tape. They belong to the most awesome troop in the area and have several friends who also have joined which makes it all the better.

Now they are home for two days including today, and then take off to Higher Things with their older brother Erik. I am sure they will have a wonderful week there too. I am looking forward to having most of our family back together. I can't lie. Anna does not get back till the middle of August so there is something more to look forward to.

I am returning to my old bike route this week as the hills carve off more marble chub than the flat lands. Maybe someday some chub will leave. Argh.

Ba deep, ba deep, that's all! (for now)

Friday, July 8, 2011

Just don't start weeding the woods

Fighting the good fight against poison ivy, daylilies and that wild rose stuff. Evan and Ingrid went to bed pretty early this evening and the rest of the family went to the Boy Scout closing campfire. Being completely alone with Round Up in hand I covered as much of our ten acres as possible. Poison Ivy be gone. It actually was not as bad as I thought it would be but there are a few spots which the kids love which were thick with poison ivy. I probably have not walked up that hill in ten years. Wow. Who would of thunk that ten acres was not traveled all the time. There is a well laid path which the kids have kept clear. I spent time thinking about lots of things. One was of when I would take Anna and Erik in the woods with me. Now they take younger kids into the woods with them. I think I better revisit this little jaunt with my kids.

Feeling rather mellow and frankly sad. Can not elaborate at the moment but being outside in the woods alone can allow for the peace and quiet to think about lots and lots of things. Friends I love and miss. Friends who hurt and I wish I could remove their hurt. I went to coffee with friends last night and we talked about quite a bit of hurt. The irony of much of our hurt and how we handled that. Sigh. Weeding and Round Up time is pretty reflective and not just satisfying in the end result. At any rate both weeding and Round Up have resulted in productive thinking and sometimes not so productive.

So ends another day on the Horner Ranch. I am thankful that one day there will be an end to these sorrows, and right now I am hanging onto the joys I do have in this life. Little Stefan and Ingrid clamoring around me at the pool and fighting over me too. That is not always pleasant but at the same time their little sweet arms and legs bring me deep sighs. Sometimes the reality of their little selves just goes deep and at times, time stands still and I just deeply enjoy watching them play and interact etc. That part of my day was very, very good. Sigh.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Personal Fitness Badge

My dear sons have landed themselves with the Personal Fitness Merit Badge counselor who thinks this badge is a way to fulfill his dream of being a drill sergeant. After twelve weeks of tracking their improvements in particular fitness activities, they now have to bike six out of seven days for another twelve weeks. This badge has become intense.....I think. I am going to attempt to go with them every day or at the very least go with Charley every day for twelve weeks and see what happens. I have never heard of a badge being this.....serious. Perhaps I will finally be able to chip off some more chub through this. Can I get an honorary badge???

Shutting up is hard to do

There is that part of Evening Prayer (I think) which says something about guarding the doors of our lips. Oh yes. SOOOO hard. No wonder we need to pray that often. Keeping to myself and learning habits of shutting up may sound ideal but are frankly the bane of my existence. Challenging. I am somewhat a think outlouder but I see where that does not serve me or mine the best all the time. I have nothing ill to say but sharing personal stuff in a haphazard way does not serve me or my family well either!!!! Is it the internet which gives us some compulsion to let it all hang out??? Sometimes I am asked things about Charley's job and such and I am caught off guard as I haven't even been thinking about it so.....have to figure out what to say on the spot I guess. That is just an example of where shut up is the better plan. I don't HAVE to fill everyone in on our life and there are ways to answer questions without offending too....I think....

My husband also is such a man. Men at times do not get women. Lol! Poor guy. Had hilarious musings about what in the world Solomon did with all those women in the same household who could all be misunderstood at once. Poor, poor Solomon. Poor, poor Charley. So sad. What a bad day dad had. It probably would be simpler for him to just knock me over the head when I am feeling confused. Then everyone else would be confused but it most likely would be more effective communication and put him out of his misery faster. Hmmmm......

So....learning to not let myself and mine hang on my sleeve as if I owe anyone outside of my family something is a hard skill to learn. My first Pastor in my married life was probably too good at this privacy thing and I often wondered why but.....I can see benefits to both ways of living. So confused. I better go weed some more and contemplate how much nicer the garden is looking with my new found weed addiction.