I feel so out of touch with you all. I've been sharing all of my Fun Vacation Stories . . . and I've been busy, busy, busy getting my New Ministry Blog and Mentor Mom Facebook Page up and running (have you popped over to visit them yet?) . . . but I've done very little "Everyday Stuff" type of blog posts lately.
It's been a full month since Jim and I left for our Most Amazing 30th Anniversary Trip. We've been home 3 weeks, and life is flying by. So, I thought I would do a little "Catch Up" post to let you know what all we have been up to.
Papa is working hard. Woo Hoo! Praising Jesus for a GREAT job! This is the first time in 2 years that Papa has had a confirmed job for over 2 months. Whew! He has started his 3 month job down in the Big City. He has a 1 1/2 hour commute each way, every day, but he is not only earning a nice hourly wage, but they are also giving him extra for gas $$. So, we are not complaining about the commute. Nope. We are THANKFUL for this job. And . . . the local Construction Company who got this job for Papa, has already told him that they have work lined up for him in the spring, too. Papa is also enjoying a group of New Friends from church, as "the guys" get together a couple of times a month to Play Cards on Friday Nights.
Mama is busy, busy, busy with the kids. I am LOVING homeschooling this year. Oh. My. Yes. Each of the 4 kids are doing a different Sonlight Curriculum, which keeps me hopping trying to keep up with them. But, they are all doing so well. Sonlight is a Literature-Based Curriculum, so the kids are reading, reading, reading. Love it!
Ben (19) just got a new job, and spends his days delivering and/or installing furniture and appliances. While he lives 20 minutes away (sharing a house with Adopted Big Kid Jared), he comes home quite often "just to hang out". He is involved with the Young Adults Group at church, and has recently got involved in a county-wide Young Adults Worship Time every Friday night.
Hosanna (16) is oh. so. busy. . . . with oh. so. many. wonderful opportunities. The past 2 months, she was asked to be a Director's Assistant for the Middle School Play. They completed their performances on Friday . . . and they begin practices for the High School Musical tomorrow (where she has multiple parts in The Wizard of Oz) . . . which will keep her busy right up to Track Season. Wow! That means practices of some kind nearly every day after school for the full school year. She is also on both the Leadership Team and the Worship Team for the High School Youth Group. But . . . in the midst of all of her busyness, she is doing very well with her studies (getting A's in both classes that she is taking at the high school). In her "free time", Hosanna works 1 morning a week as a "Mommy's Helper" and volunteers every Wednesday night with the AWANAs Program at church.
Sarah (13) enjoyed her time with the Middle School Play. She was a Seamstress in "The Emperor's Birthday Suit". We had beautiful weather for all of September and the first two weeks of October, so Sarah and Josiah were able to walk the mile to Play Practice every afternoon. I think it was really fun for them to get out of the house together as "big kids" walking to the Middle School. They then walked home with Hosanna and friends after practice each day. Sarah is also enjoying being involved in the Middle School Youth Group.
Josiah (12) had a lead part in "The Emperor's Birthday Suit" . . . playing "Jack" the prince. He, too, is involved with Middle School Youth Group and Middle School Sunday School with Sarah every week. Josiah is thoroughly enjoying his study of "American History" with Sonlight this year, devouring each and every book put before him.
Rachel (11) seems to be doing very well at the Residential Care Facility. She phones home usually once per week, and we had a good conversation this week. She has made a few friends, and is enjoying school. She has met with the psychologist a couple of times, but they go very slowly with a treatment plan . . . as RAD has no "quick fixes". While she has been very well-behaved, she also has shown no signs of bonding with any of the staff (as she keeps her emotional distance). Sadly, some kids with RAD just plain do better in an institutional setting because they are not expected to bond (as they would be in a family). Whereas Jim and I had planned to make a trip to visit her this month, the director said that she might not be ready for a visit until next spring or summer. Being that we live 600 miles away, it would be hard to make the drive only to have her decide she doesn't want a visit. So, we will continue to work at building our relationship through phone calls and letters.
Elijah (10) is doing SO WELL with his schooling! Wow! He went from a struggling reader last year to a young boy that reads for hours. Yeah! Being that he is FULL of energy, though, he does need regular "recess" breaks throughout the day. (smile) Elijah is LOVING our new church, and can't wait to go to Sunday School and AWANAS every week.
Papa and the 3 Young Ones drive up to Canada every Monday night for Bible Study Fellowship, and Mama gets a Quiet Night Alone while Hosanna goes to Discipleship Group.
Papa is also now going to a Freedom in Christ Bible Study at church on Wednesday Nights, while the kids are at Middle School Youth Group and AWANAS . . . so Mama has two nights per week Home Alone. It is kind of weird having so much "Free Time" for Mama . . . and kind of lonely. I sure wish that there was a Ladies Bible Study on Monday or Wednesday nights at church. (sad) I could go to one on Tuesday or Thursday nights . . . but want to be home with the family since they are gone the other two nights. Mama is still trying to figure out how to build friendships at church. It's hard when a lot of the ladies have known each other for 20+ years.
I cannot believe that Thanksgiving is only 2 weeks away. Crazy! The past couple of years I've gotten the majority of my Christmas Shopping done before Thanksgiving. But, our paycheck was short this month due to Jim missing a week of work for our Puerto Rico Vacation. So, it looks like Christmas Shopping will have to wait until December this year.
Well . . . I think I've caught you up on Daily Life with the Big D. Family. (smile) Lots of Good Stuff going on . . . but still a lot of TOUGH stuff, too. (hard and sad)