summer fun

It’s been a while since I last posted!  The itch to write was starting to drive me nuts.  😉  I find myself with some quiet time here while Baby naps (since he and I are home alone–the big kids and Daddy went bowling for free).  I have any number of chores that need to get done, but for now, this suits me.

I had a wonderful morning with my dear daughter.  She and I got ready for the day and then set off to a nearby farm market to pick strawberries.  Yesterday we saw a couple pretty big storms blow through so the ground was quite muddy in places at the farm, but it was a sunny morning with a beautiful breeze (which kept the skeeters away).  I treasured every moment!  She loved picking the berries, did a really good job, and we have been enjoying the berries very much.  The Schwan’s man stopped by today and we made our first purchase ever–some vanilla ice cream.  Mmm, that creamy stuff with some fresh berries on top sounds amazing for a little treat after supper!

Summer has been really enjoyable so far.  The weather hasn’t been very hot which bums me out a little bit, although I’m thankful on behalf of all the pregnant mamas out there when I think back on how little energy I had last summer, especially on hot days.  We did finally get around to a beach day yesterday, but it wasn’t exactly what I would call “ideal beach weather”, but we had fun anyway.  The water was too chilly for Baby’s liking, and as it was one of the storms I referred to above rolled in and sent us home sooner than we had intended to go.  Still, my husband and I marveled at how happy ALL three older kids were to be there when we remembered back to our one time at that beach last year (when our older son was just upset to be there and couldn’t let it go).

Speaking of our wonderfully complex and sweet oldest son, summer has been going really well for him.  He certainly has “moments” here and there and has had a couple majorly “worry days”.  The first bad day when everything made him worry was when we took him to his special clinic to meet with his new dr.  The last time we were there he had a big blood draw, so it’s no wonder that going back there brought it all to mind and was probably the big thing which set him off.  For the rest of the day, then, just EVERY single random thing caused his mind to get stuck and perseverate and worry.  It was tough–I won’t lie.  There was another day shortly after that which was also tough.  I felt he was tired out so we got him rested back up, revised a couple routines around at home, reflected on how well we were following the therapy principles, and have been getting along well enough.

As for those “moments” here and there, while they feel big and sometimes pretty tough in the moment itself, looking back I’d have to say that summer is going swimmingly (despite that we haven’t done a lot of that so far).  He’s latched onto playing kick ball, which I’m thrilled about since it’s outside and active.  The tricky thing is that it’s not an independent activity, so I do my best to get out there and play as much as I can when he’s asking and to encourage the others to, as well.  I had to laugh, however, when he told me one day that he doesn’t know why but his brain tells him that he just HAS to play kick ball!  I hid my smile, but I was thinking, “How true!  How typical!  That’s because that’s the mode your brain works in, my special boy.”  It’s not that he only walks around fretting about playing kickball.  He still looks forward to his computer time (playing Webkinz games) and building things with his Kre-O sets.  He’s enjoying filling the squares in on his summer library reading chart (although he much prefers to be read to than to read by himself), and he’s been happy and cooperative in regard to just about all of our outings–to parks, the zoo, the Children’s Museum, and even just some errands.  I love that I don’t wince and worry as I’m preparing to haul everyone out the door (like I used to, in fear and certain anticipation of how opposed he would be).  That’s not to say that some of those “moments” haven’t cropped up on our outings, but these tools from the therapist are really making a difference.  We can’t always solve his problem, but distracting ourselves so that we don’t get caught up in the deeply heated emotional nature of it is really critical.  That can be hard because I don’t want him to feel like I don’t care, but then I remind myself as we’re going through it that his mind isn’t functioning at it’s best anyway, so I could be lavishing the most love and sweetness onto him and he would simply process it as “Mom is my enemy who doesn’t care and never helps” if I wasn’t magically solving his problem.

Are we getting much done around here?  Maybe not, but we sure are busy, busy anyway!  I haven’t planted my gardens  yet.  There’s still a lot of major yard work to do.  The house often feels messy and I almost always have a mountain of laundry–whether that’s clean or dirty.  There are always dishes to be washed and toys to be put away.  What matters, though, is that most of the time I DON’T MIND.  I look at the messy house as my kids being active and using the blessings that we have–that they don’t have much time to use during the school year.  The mountain of laundry?  That can overwhelm me sometimes, but I’m so thankful for the people who wore the clothes.  I did plant some seeds in pots and hope to transfer them to the gardens when I can.  There’s no deadline set.  I do a bit here and there when nobody needs me, and that keeps me from getting stressed out or frustrated.  When it gets done, I’ll be thrilled.

I loved it the other week when my kids took it upon themselves to get outside and start creating a play together.  They took so much time in those few days reviewing, tweaking, and performing it.  It’s forgotten about now, but I adore seeing them doing things together.

I could go on and on, but now I should get back to my chores before Baby wakes up–although a 10-20 minute power snooze might be more beneficial…On the other hand, when he gets up we’ll set out for my usual 5k, and that should perk me up.

Next week it will be time to gear up for a week or so away from home, so I just want us to enjoy our time here at home, and am thankful that we have been, so far.


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