Today I…

If you read a lot of blogs or if you’re a scrapbooker, you might be familiar with the common theme of recording our children’s everyday achievements with posts or scrapbook pages entitled, “Today You…” followed by the amazing list of things they did, such as jumping in the pool at swim lessons or building gigantic lego creations. But let’s be honest…the stuff that we moms accomplish in a day is way more impressive. With that in mind, after a particularly hard day, I think I need to record my own achievements.

Today I…

  • Got up in time to wrap a parcel to take to the post office, get two boys’ school outfits picked out (twice…the first set of shorts was rejected by my picky firstborn because the tabs inside itched), get a backpack and a preschool bag packed, eat a quick bowl of cereal while finding the parcel’s address on my hard drive, and drive two boys to school, all before 7:30 a.m.
  • Went to Target to buy hot chocolate packets for a friend in China and managed to purchase four t-shirts while there…it’s true that you spend more money when your kids aren’t with you!
  • Managed to ship said package to China without having my car stolen despite the fact that I lost my keys and two of my books of stamps during the twenty minutes I was in the post office. I’m not used to doing errands without an extra set of hands to hold the car keys or my purse or something.
  • Confirmed that our mechanic can, in fact, do our cars’ “annual vehicle safety inspections” which we need for fostering.
  • Postponed a doctor’s appointment that conflicted with my women’s bible study, made two dentist appointments, set up one four year old check up (eight months late isn’t bad is it?), and confirmed a foster parenting class for this week. I was on hold with the office that will do my T.B. test but they didn’t click back fast enough and I had to leave for preschool pick up.
  • Felt like the preschool hours went by a little too fast. But I postponed my cleaning time for after Jake got home from school so that Tyler and I could relax a bit and read some stories and color before picking up Jake.
  • Wondered who has replaced my first grader…you know, the one who’s generally pretty decent to be around, but who seems to be on vacation while a terror spends the after school hours at our house. Trying to figure out what our after school routine should be…outside to get out the energy? inside to calm down? alone to decompress? together to reconnect? Whatever it is, we haven’t got it down yet.
  • Tried to get Jake to practice his “speech” introducing himself to his class with props that represent him. Too much goofing off and not cooperating meant frustration for both of us.
  • Got annoyed too many times with my boys. Didn’t yell though. That’s an improvement. I’m not much of a yeller, but I’m aiming for zero yelling. I’ve decided that if I’m yelling, it means that I’ve lost my self control, not that the boys have a problem.
  • Ate crock pot Thai yellow curry chicken and rice. So good. The boys weren’t fans. But that wasn’t really important to me by that time of day.
  • Took our remote control cars out for an after dinner walk. Some people take their dogs, we take our RC vehicles. Mostly because I needed to check out the lighting in our neighborhood at that time of day for a photo shoot I’m doing next week.
  • Played a game of Pirateer. This is a great family game…even Tyler can be his own guy, and there’s enough strategy to make it fun but enough luck to let the boys win now and then, too.
  • Let the boys put themselves to bed. Sometimes I let them do this and it worked out fine tonight. Phew. I needed that.
  • Didn’t clean up after breakfast, lunch, or dinner. That’s right. The house is currently a disaster, but venting here is good for my sanity.
  • Hear the boys calling my name from inside their room (after having new and very specific “school night” bedtime rules enforced on them for the first time.)
  • Feel beat.

Boy, getting into new rhythms is tough. It’s been a long time since we’ve had such a major life transition and I’m trying to figure out where to schedule in our regular clean-ups now that we’re too hurried to do after breakfast clean up and Jake’s not home for lunch. (After I was just getting into the swing of that routine, too! No fair!) Anyway, I don’t have it worked out yet, but maybe by next week I’ll feel settled. Right now I have dishes to do, but I really just want some ice cream. Thank goodness we don’t keep any in the house (for this particular reason!) Luckily “tomorrow is always fresh with no mistakes in it.”

And lest you think that every picture I take is blog worthy, here are the test photos I took of the boys this evening as we walked around looking for good light for next week’s photo shoot. These are straight out of the camera with no retouching, except the last two. You can click on them to see them bigger, if you want.

Why do the boys feel the need to make weird faces and “hug” each other so hard they fall over when I have the camera out?

Yes, I have photos where the kids’ faces are contorted, too.

Look who we found on our neighbor’s wall as we rounded the corner to home. What a nice surprise.

And home sweet home. Even on the worst of days (which today was not…I’d rank it about a 4 out of 10) it’s always good to know that you have a home and a family and a God who takes care of you.

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