Monday, August 26, 2013

Cheering Strategies

Yesterday afternoon I said to Anna Kate, "Guess what? I put something special in your room. To cheer you up."
And Nate said, "What is it? Julia?"
Because that's what would be the best right now.
Her sister, back in our house.
Well, obviously it wasn't Julia that I put in her room. It was a peachy-fresh dahlia, given to us by our church friend who grows them by the hundred.
It's so perfect. I think it helped. Flowers help when we are sad.

Today is the first day of seventh grade.
She started a few weeks ago, when the new math curriculum arrived. She was excited to start.
Today she began with a little bit of art.
Malachi is so busy these days, and clingy with his molars coming in, that she's doing a lot of learning by herself. I'm not worried about her, because she tends to be motivated. Last year at this time I was full of trepidation, not sure if I could home school while caring for a baby. Well, that was easy. Julia was home a lot, and the baby was at a sleepy, easy age. Now he's busy, getting into everything, and still not napping in a crib. I should be nervous. For some reason I'm not.

The day after we took Julia to college, Isaac came home for the afternoon.
He brought his window-washing gear with him.
Some of my friends think I'm a fussy housekeeper, and I am in some ways, but let me tell you, the windows of this house were filthy. Every time I thought about cleaning them, something else needed my attention. And if you've ever had your windows washed professionally, it's hard to go back to Windex and paper towels. Isaac uses various squeegees, and the water is sudsy with Dawn dish detergent. It's gotta be Dawn.
He washed all our windows, inside and out, plus the French doors. I couldn't believe how happy this made me feel. He graduates from the University of Minnesota this December, and his window-washing days are behind him. So having my grown son show up, work a job he doesn't love, and do it perfectly, made my heart soar a little.

Of course, little brothers are famous for ruining a good day's work.
Here is Malachi, dressed for the weather (100 degrees today!), with sticky fingers all over the back door.

I took this picture this morning. The days when our huge yard was filled with football-kicking, frisbee-throwing, running, laughing kids seem to be behind us. The boys won't come home much anymore. Anna Kate would rather hang out inside. We don't have a swing-set or even a little slide for the baby. It's a big-kid kind of yard.

Baby's crying, time to stop writing and tend to him. Today I choose to be thankful that I had more kids, that we have air-conditioning, and that we don't have to go anywhere in this heat.

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