By Rachel Marie, Contributing Writer
I’ve been a mom for 7 years now and in no way am I am expert, but I am getting much better at this gig than I was when I first became a mom.
A few weeks ago we hosted small group at our own home for the first time and I was amazed by how young, yet grown up the other couples were. When I think back to my early mothering years I wasn’t anywhere close to how mature, financially responsible or spiritually strong these couple are now.
My husband was finishing his doctorate and I was finishing my degree, we were broke and just beginning to learn about real health and real food. And we were addicted to Diet Coke. I could never imagine we’d have the pleasure to be where we are now.
Over the 10 years of our marriage we’ve experienced needing governmental assistance while we were in school, having dreadful jobs, asking for help from family, not able to give gifts to others, to church or to each other, dealing with what seemed like one closed door after another, heartache and pain, but also so much blessing through all of that.
We’ve learned to wait on God, to look at situations through a godly lens, that it’s OK to not have it all together, and when trials come, they’re to bring glory to God.
The past couple of years when I’ve shared my days, I had been going through hard seasons of trust and now I am in a season of peace. Not always clearly knowing God’s plans, but always seeing parts of his plan living out in a way I would have never thought possible.
So I’d like to share with you one of my days from the beginning of the school year. I have a kindergartener, a first grader and a 6 month old. We “do” school with a 3 times a week co-op and homeschool. (You can read more about it here if you are interested.)
August 21, 2014
I woke up to my husband saying goodbye and thought I’ll rest for a little longer. It’s a Thursday, I went to bed later so I slept in a bit later than I had planned. If you are an early bird, I want to be you! I just couldn’t do it today. :)
I rolled out of bed about 30 minutes after he left. It’s a homeschool day, and it’s going to be filled to the brim, so I better get up. My son has been up an hour or so, sneakily watching TV so first I talk to him about it and decide on a consequence. Then I get up and get ready for the day (which consisted of a T-shirt, shorts, brush my hair and teeth).
Go wake up my daughter, who likes to sleep just like her Mama. Tell her to get dressed, bed made, teeth brushed, etc.
Get breakfast for my kids and coffee for me. Since we’re running late, I just serve cereal. I run out to the car to get a folder and look back at our home while walking back in. I feel a sense of thankfulness and go back in to find a devotion of self control. Our son has been struggling at school and at home learning about this… something that’s hard for everyone!
I don’t have much time at the computer before the baby wakes up. I go get her, change her diaper and bring her downstairs with us. I nurse her while the other two are finishing their breakfast. After she’s done, I run upstairs to put in a load of laundry.
It’s much later than I wanted to start school, but oh well. We have all day if we need it, right?? We start with a quick prayer and then work on our calendar notebooks. My son thinks he’s an expert and doesn’t need my help, which then stresses me out and my daughter so we all need a quiet time and to check our attitudes while finishing it up. I help kids with workbooks, Julia my kinder needing most of my attention over the next couple of hours.
Time to read and have some free time while enjoying a snack. I sit with my daughter while I nurse the baby and she reads three Bob Books to me. I am so impressed with how well she is learning to read. I thought it was going to be more of a struggle. My son finishes up reading two chapters in his book, then plays with London while Julia and I finish her last book. Lincoln and Julia empty the dishwasher while I quickly put the refrigerated chicken soup leftovers that are already in the crock in the Crock-Pot and turn it on warm before heading out.
We head to my son’s Taekwondo homeschool class. Normally we stay but today I need to return our late library books and my husband’s shirts to the natural dry-cleaner. I wanted to fill up our water bottles but ran out of time.
Pick up Lincoln and head the fill up the water bottles. It’s so hot! Older two fight over who gets to put the coins in first.
Arrive back home. I take one of the waters in we need, and realize we forgot to bring trash cans out to the curb last night. We all feel terrible and grouchy because we haven’t eaten lunch YET. Scoop bowls of soup, eat, and nurse baby again. Lay baby down for a nap and take a moment to thank God for her.
Get back to finishing our school work. I think to myself, gosh it’s late! We work on one of the art activities for school. It’s called torn art but I think it’s more like a mosaic. I thought it would be easiest if they choose a shape and added the pieces of paper. I told them to choose one of the shapes in our homeschool room and I would draw it. They cut it out, and then glued it on their papers. We embellish with some stickers when they’re done.
School time is over… thankfully. It went longer than I expected but I’m glad I have creative little minds and artists. Baby wakes up at some point. Kids are hungry so they get a snack: strawberries and Annie’s bunnies. They play outside while I look at all these pictures. At some point they ask why I am taking so many pictures. :) I do a quick pick up and I realized the chicken I thawed for dinner smells funny, so I text my husband.
I glance at the clock after nursing the baby, and playing around with the kids and realize it’s getting late and kids have co-op tomorrow, so we better get going. I put the clothes in the dyer before we hop in the car. Thankfully the grocery store is only about 5 minutes away.
Just as we’re parking, my husband texts me and says he’s going to join us for dinner but has to go back to work afterwards. Although I wish he could stay with us longer, I realize his Monday-Thursday work week is full so that he can have Friday-Sunday with us.
We walk through the store to pick up a few items and then head to the kids eat free counter where our kids choose what they want. My husband sneaks up on the kids and surprises them.
After my husband pays for our food, we sit down to eat. I mostly keep baby company while my husband catches up with the kids. My kids enjoy pizza, carrots and grapes and hubby let them get a komboucha. I also got a slice of pizza while my husband got the hot bar.
We head home. The kids take quick showers and settle down in my son’s room for our bedtime routine, which consists of a Bible story, prayer and singing Jesus Loves Me. Baby is fussy, so my son takes the lead and reads the story while I nurse London. We say goodnight!
I head downstairs with the baby because she didn’t fall asleep yet. I pull out a letter I found in an older Bible I used the night before at small group. It happens to be a letter from before we got married. I reminisce, then go lay baby down once she’s asleep.
Then I unwind by Facebooking and watching some TV. Later my husband comes home, we chat for a bit, then I head to bed.
I’m in bed.
Well, there you have it. Not all my days are this jam-packed, this day just so happened to be. This is a chapter of my story; we all have a story to share!