summer 2011

summer 2011

Paul and I, all 16 kids and Ashley, Benjamin's wife...Christmas 2012

Paul and I, all 16 kids and Ashley, Benjamin's wife...Christmas 2012

Thursday, June 22, 2017

the good, the bad,and the ugly....

Trying to balance what to write about and what not to mention, without painting a picture that's rosier than reality is my goal here. So yeah, some stories aren't mine to tell, and some messes aren't what we really want to show the world, but I will tell you this: they are there, ha. My laundry room, the downstairs hall with the kitty litter...ect.

The other night, a friend was talking about a blogger who posted pics of her house, and all the nice views, but neglected to include one side of the house that was bordered by a factory, or some other dumpy place, giving the illusion that her place was much nicer than it actually was. I don't want to be like that, but I also don't want to embarrass my kids by posting pictures of the sink full of dishes, or what it looks like behind the couch. Sometimes I consider just walking away from this blog. Have I disclosed too much? Have I said too little?

Everything isn't sunshine and roses, of course not. I have sixteen kids, for heaven's sake! But the purpose of this blog isn't to paint a picture of a huge happy family, it's for ME to write from my point of view.

And here's my view today. Sometimes I get overwhelmed. The teenagers, oh dear. When one of them says, "Mom!", and I immediately answer in my WHAT NOW voice, and they get offended and say NEVER MIND. Okay. That went well. Then another mentions they NEED shoes. ALL of her shoes, ALL of them have faults. She can name them all, if I don't believe her. And washing machine wars...I thought it was good if they all learned to wash their own clothes, but oh dear, it's hard to fit a load in, sharing it with them all. There is always dog hair. I sweep every morning, but then by the next morning, it's there. Clutter piles up fast, and a day of housecleaning success vanishes before I can even revel in it. Kids grow out of clothes, we bag them up to give to friends and they sit there until we remember to actually give them away.

My view is also this: Life is one huge gift. I firmly believe that each and every day, there are multitudes of treasures to be found if I have my eyes open and can hear what God has to say to me. I know that each of my kids are different from each other, and there is no One Size Fits All method to deal with things that come up, but that God is always faithful to give wisdom when I ask.

Have you ever noticed a tendency to want to help when someone is truly in need? As a parent, if one of the kids is really sad, I want to comfort and help. That's the way it is with God, too. When I pray for patience, and for understanding and mercy and goodness towards my kids, He gives it.

Anyway. Yesterday was a good day. We headed out to gymnastics a bit early and stopped at the thrift store. There were these outdoor chairs that swivel, and rock a little, mauve colored with white metal bases...not beautiful, but comfortable and...$4.99 each. I asked Evelyn if she thought we could fit them in the back of the van...and she was willing to try. And they smooshed right in there! We didn't have enough chairs on the deck, so it's nice. I would like to paint them/redo them, but we'll see.

I still have some things to accomplish before the camp, some shopping, some marinating and freezing meat, and packing clothes.

This weekend is a huge weekend for us, our church is having a grand feast in the big city. Over a thousand people, actually 1,600 or so, from all over the east coast, and hundreds from Norway. And then leaving for Cabin.

And fast forward a day...this was written yesterday. I am having trouble finding time to write, because I don't do well with a million interruptions. Nine hundred ninety nine thousand ninety nine are okay, but when it hits a million, I can't do it anymore. I did get the meat purchased and frozen, but ha, I had a detour. Emily came to pick up Jonathan to help her pick up a huge grill for Saturday's church cookout, and then she was going to Trader Joe's. Now, I have never been to Trader Joe's. It's new to our area. So I found myself getting ready really quickly, and leaving the house, kids, and dogs to Evelyn for a few hours.

And did I like Trader Joe's? Way too much. I am glad it's far far away, at least too far for regular visits. A 17.4 ounce Belguim chocolate bar for $4.99? In the cart. I also bought their brand of Ezekial bread (sprouted grains), some unsweetened coconut flakes, a jar of crunchy almond butter, a watermelon, some bacon ends and pieces for Jonathan (he's a good kid, he didn't ask for a thing, but he loves bacon, and pointed it I let him get it.)

So in the afternoon, I made these little treats from 2 tablespoons melted butter, 3/4 cup of almond butter, a quarter teaspoon of stevia, and a cup of the coconut...made them into little cookie shapes, into the freezer, and oh yummy!

This morning, I accidentally slept in. I always wake up early, think of what I have to do, and get myself out of bed. Yesterday it was 6:20. This morning, I woke up, checked the time, and HOLY COW! it was 9:20. oops. I had missed one phone call and two texts. I was in a deep sleep, and I guess I needed it.

I feel like I am a day late and a dollar short as it is, but sleeping in, whoa.

Today's agenda is to sit around in the sun and wish someone would pack and clean the house for me. ha. I wish. Actually, Evelyn and I are taking a trip to the place she is going to turn in her old nice clothes, one of the closet used stores, then we are going to Kohl's because I have ten dollars Kohl's cash, and I hate to waste it. Then home...hopefully with lots of time left in the day for that sitting in the sunshine. And cleaning the house, of course.

Camille is keeping track of the days Until The Cabin, and oh dear! She packs her own clothes now, and is trying to balance that tricky question of How Many Pairs Of Underwear Do I Need To Leave Here. It's a rainy forecast, and with all the stuff God has to deal with all the time, it seems selfish to pray for nicer weather, but...


Stacet Claire said...

Trader Joes is my all time favorite!!!! I live in California and they are pretty much everywhere...I find it to be pretty affordable...The chocolate is great and cheap..they also have Toberone bars for under $2.00..So many yummy things that I love there and could go on for days...anyway I LOVE your honesty and your "view" of your little world...I also LOVE how you LOVE our Lord!

Make it a great day!!

momto9 said...

I figure I blog for MY good pleasure:) No rules about what I should post and if anyone has had one child even...they can imagine that with nine its that much more chaos...dont think I need to tell people for them to understand. but I know what you mean and my house is a disaster at the moment as I have one teen home from Norway for 3 weeks and one that just left to Australia today...his stuff I strewn about my living room as he sorted through what to bring what to leave. Ams I have two apartment buildings behind my back yard:)) Ha Ha now I'll have to post pics :):)
Enjoy the feasts this weekend. Hope you won't be dead tired by the end....oh you will be...but its worth it!

Susan said...

Hi Della, Well, I will speak for myself. One of the things that I love the most about your blog is that it is so honest. So on some level every reader can relate. You have a gift of putting the difficulties of life into perspective and trying to learn from them, that is always a good lesson for me.
I will be looking forward to those vacation photos. I know you will all have so much fun! Eat a few things that are not on your diet because this is only one week out of the year.

16 blessings'mom said...

Stacey, I am planning on trying that $4.99 chocolate bar when we are at camp, no matter what. I actually hope it's not TOO yummy.
Tereza, these world traveler kids of ours, yes they leave a trail. Kathryn is leaving for Norway for a year soon, and Evelyn is spending a month in California with her brother. And this feast weekend: it's amazing. I have to leave here in a few minutes to drive two of the teenagers out to work in the kiosks, the Norwegians have descended upon Victory! It's such a good time.
Susan, I do plan to stray a little from the strictness while at the cabin, but not too much because then I'll feel yucky, ha. Last year I ate Oreos on the dock, and oh dear were they good. Too good.