After a weekend of soccer the season ended for all three kids and this was the in between week before basketball, which meant our evenings weren't spoken for other than homework. If that wasn't enough, the weather was unseasonably warm, some days reaching the 70's and with each day I felt better and better. With our time outside we raked. I love the fresh air, exercise and time together and I delight in the ordinary.
I think sometimes its important to point out that none of the hard of our week is pictured here. Not because we didn't have any. Some of it is not anything tangible that I could take a picture of, some of it is not my story to tell, some of it would come up in conversation if we were drinking coffee together. Beyond that, I make a conscious choice each day to have a thankful heart. I know that God is always at work so each day on the way to school I pray with the kids that we would be aware of His presence and in tune to the things He is doing. If He is working, I want to know about it!
I try to spend my days seeking out the good, taking pictures in my head and with my camera of the beauty and grace that is in the ordinary and the hard of everyday life.
The last of soccer! Amanda got to play under the lights and Avery got to play in a dome.
Silly, silly boy...and such fun company! (yeah...he still does the backwards clothes and shoes thing a lot. In fact this week he came down once with his school dress shirt inside out and buttoned. I tried to put his tie on but the collar wasn't working. Aiden, was your shirt hard to button this morning? Yeah, a little bit. :)
We met some cousins at my mom's nearly deserted campground. The kids romped around in the leaves and threw sticks and rocks in the river.
Then we took a very short hike to a clearing. We'd only been in the short-grass meadow a short time before Alayna came over saying she had a tick on her arm. Minutes later Amanda came over saying she had a tick on her pants. I picked it off and more than a dozen others! We freaked and couldn't get out of there fast enough and home to the shower! Ewww, yuck, eeek! Remarkably, none of us dreamed of creeping, crawling things that night.
A very pretty and early sunset that Avery got a picture of.
We visited Grandma and Great-Grandpa. The kids were trying to get a helicopter in flight, but it didn't cooperate.
Aiden was ready early, so he headed out to get some work done before school.
Later when the big kid got up, I suggested that raking might be a good way to get some exercise. ;). I worked along side him and we got some good time together that doesn't happen very often now with his full school, work and social life.
Amanda had been asking if she could get a planner, wanting to set some goals and organize her weeks. I am ALL about planners and lists and organization, so she didn't need to ask twice. I looked online for what I thought would be the perfect one and ordered one for Avery and one for Amanda, along with a set of multi-colored pens (a necessity in filling out planners, don't you think ;).
The girls were ecstatic to find the surprise waiting on their beds and they wanted to get right to work filling them out. So we wrote in family members birthdays, days off of school, etc. My heart swelled at their enthusiasm and desire. SO precious!
I went out to rake to get some fresh air and exercise. Then the kids slowly joined me so I stayed to be with them and ended up staying out for a while. I was tired and getting ready to head in, when my neighbor came over with a leaf blower, so then obviously I stayed. He and I finished the whole yard! I'm so grateful for good, caring neighbors which we've had in our last two houses. Also, it will be several days before I'll need to/be able to do any upper body strength training. :)
Earlier in the day when we'd just started Amanda asked if we could rake the neighbor's front lawn. So the three of us cleared it and talked about what a blessing it is to do things for other people, especially when they don't find out who it was that gave or did. Then, just hours later, our other neighbor came with his leaf blower. It was a cool thing for the kids to witness how kindness can spread.
Lastly, Aiden. I got home from an early-morning walk to find an all-sleeping house, except for Aiden, who greeted me like this. When he saw my face, he tentatively asked, Is it Saturday??
And then he had a near-perfect day....
Without soccer to run out to, he settled into his legos for a couple hours (shorts on backwards, though he got this particular shirt right for the first time ever, I think).
He quickly joined me in the raking, happy to be working.
Playing with sisters in his brotherly way.
Hosanna, to the Son of David, blessed is the King of Israel...Hosanna! :)
All spiffied up for church. Buddy, its going to get cold tonight...you might get chilly. No, I'll be fine. Okay, well, can I iron that shirt for you? (looks down at it, smooths it with his hands). No Mom, its good. Alrighty then...have a great time!
And as if the day couldn't get any better...chicken tenders and fries for dinner!
Hope your week is great!!