Thursday, August 30, 2007
Fortunately, both Sydni and Daniel are moving into teaching teams that we're familiar with; Syd has the same group of teachers that Shannon had two years ago, and Daniel has Syd's old sixth grade team. There's some familiarity there, as well as a minor affirmation on my part (right or wrong, I can't help but think that those teachers could have said, "Another one from THAT family? No way! GET THAT KID OFF MY CLASS LIST!" They didn't, so that makes me feel good...)
I'm done with school supplies and back-to-school clothes, because I am completely out of money. Their fees are paid, and we'll just hold our breath until payday - and eat lots of leftovers.
I'm looking forward to the structure that next week will bring. Everybody's stayed up late, enjoying this final week, but tonight I'm urging them all to bed a little earlier than usual. The house is chaotic. We're operating in a haze of denial and anticipation, as September rolls around once again.
As a former teacher, I have always felt energized and excited by the newness that fall brings. This year, I just feel rather tired. The kids are moving with energy, though. Syd has been involved in band camp since we returned from vacation; she's hauled her trombone around for a few weeks. Surprisingly, she absolutely loves marching band and has had a terrific time. Her first performance is this Monday at the Labor Day parade. I can't wait.
The older girls are excited about high school; photography and music theory for Sarah, journalism and a bunch of honors classes for Shannon. Daniel is excited about percussion class (one of 12 out of 120 picked for this class! Woo hoo!) and rec league soccer. David will be in second grade, playing soccer, looking forward to a good year - though he's the one that would rather stay home.
And me? I'm not going back to my second job this year. I'll be - hopefully - a little more focused, a little less the victim of Never Enough Time. Hopefully.
One more weekend before structure takes hold and shakes us out of our complacency. I intend to enjoy it!
Monday, August 20, 2007
Sunday, August 19, 2007
A bird is chirping in the dusk, somewhere high about me. A few visitors have been coming to the bird feeder I hung - I spotted one or two right before we left town, and quickly noted that the feeder was empty when we got back home. I filled it this evening, and will look for new friends in the morning.
I'll finish my official vacation tomorrow (while trying desperately to prepare for top o' the morning meanings and budgets - both due first thing Tuesday - without actually 'working'). In the meantime, we're enjoying settling in back home.
It was a good week, and we are blessed.
We usually make time for a trip to Emerald Forest Miniature Golf. It's a great money-maker for them, and $55 for a night of fun for us - GULP! - but we usually have a blast. David is the best golfer of the kids - he got a hole-in-one and managed to have the best score of all his siblings. Almost beat the adults, too!
So it goes. Makes me think of a song by Ellis Paul, called 'The World Ain't Slowing Down':
It sure isn't. That's not necessarily a bad thing; it's just a heck of a wistful turn now and then.
All in all, it's good to be home.
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Words are a unifying thing; everybody has a few. Scrabble is a great equalizer, I've found. I love the game.
It's the one time that I do get rather competitive. I like to win. Eric sets the stage for the official rules....
Friday, August 17, 2007
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Emerald Isle sits facing south, so catching the rising of the sun is a bit trickier than usual. Unfortunately, we were thwarted, as a massive cloud covered the eastern sky. Though it grew lighter and lighter, we never really saw the sun until about 8:00.
The girls gave up, trotted down the beach to their grandparents' place and talked their grandma into making them pancakes. Then they took a nap.
How about those freckles? They run in the family; this is my neice, Emily.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
They set a great example of generosity. Mom and Dad place such a high value on us all being together, and they help in whatever way they can so that our family can gather here.
Monday, August 13, 2007
We've vacationed here for years; my mom was from New Bern, North Carolina, and when my dad squired her away to Pennsylvania after a stint in the Marines, he stayed committed to bringing her 'home' as frequently as possible. That included almost all of our summer vacations. Not a bad deal, as I think this is by far one of the nicest beaches on the east coast.
Now that my brother and I (and many of my cousins) have families of our own, we have continued what has proven to be a wonderful tradition. This year we've rented a house together (usually we stay in my parents' place here, but it's gotten too cramped) and so far, so good.
We are on vacation! Woo hoo! My pastor wagged his finger in my face after church Sunday and sternly said, "NO WORKING!" I think I'll manage...
Thursday, August 9, 2007
They did a great job - mostly took care of assembling materials themselves, and - after a quick demonstration - they did all of the work themselves. I had 'hired' Daniel for the job, and told him I'd pay him $30. When he enlisted the help of his siblings, I told him that he would make the decision about their pay.
He decided they each earned $10. Pretty fair, I thought. Of course, the extra twenty came out of MY pocket - not his!
They worked hard and the deck ended up looking terrific.
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
Tuesday, August 7, 2007
This shot, from our retreat time, showed David giving a reluctant hug. He has a bad habit of whacking people - surprising little 'love taps' or attention getters that border on rude and unacceptable. We made a new rule: every time he pops somebody, he has to hug them.
Saturday, August 4, 2007
Beth puts food on the table by working with a local church to lead others to see that they are welcome at the table, that God is relevant, and to help them become fully devoted followers, too.
Yeah, we're surprised, too.
An interesting look from the one who is usually behind the camera.
Shannon, a thinker and writer, is also a passionate soccer player. She loves team sports and is loyal beyond measure.
Checking email or doing research...
Sydni has arrived at her teen years with a passion for creativity and politics. When she's not making scrapbooks, she is putting together appropriate outfits.
Daniel is a lithe, athletic boy who reads constantly, loves soccer and is the resident Wii Pro in the household.
Last week, Daniel learned to water ski at our staff retreat! It only took a few tries and he was up; he shares his dad's incredible athletic abilities...
He dared the folks on the boat to knock him off the tube...
David is hysterically funny, clever and devoted to his family.
Celebrating his recent 8th birthday.
This blog is designed for friends and family in real life as well as those we know from the blogging community. We hope to hear from you! The 'comments' feature is easy to use; just click on and follow directions! If you aren't a blogger, just sign your name but use the 'annonymous' feature!