Year 2 Ready or Not it is Drop Off time

Year 2

My heart breaks as we begin our journey to drop off.  Year 1 was almost unbearable, I could not blog about it because my heart just hurt too much.  R leaving was breaking my heart and it actually hurt.  I wept during the weeks leading up to the D day (Drop off Day)  I could hardly breath for fear I would start to cry out loud.  I tried to keep my fears and sadness to myself to not share that burden with him.  Year 2 the drop off is going better.  I can actually have conversations with out drowning them in tears.  Oh I’m still crying, but not as hard, not as much and not with such sadness.

Year 1 so much was unknown, Year 2 we are more prepared

Year 1 porch picture was heartbreaking, Year 2 porch picture was heartbreaking

Year 1 we took up so much stuff, Year 2 we know better

Year 1 the drive was terribly long, Year 2 the drive is still terribly long

Year 1 the baby drove R crazy, Year 2 the baby is still driving R crazy

Year 1 the whole family went half way, Year 2 some did not even get a chance to say goodbye

Year 1 we had a whole crew help on move in day, Year 2 we miss that move in crew

Year 1 we were filled with anxiety, Year 2 we have less anxiety

Year 1 we all grew, Year 2 we will grow some more

Year 1 the empty spot at the table was hard to look at, Year 2 we have to relearn table setting

Year 1 I had to learn how to cook for only 6, Year 2 I have to relearn how to cook for only 6

Year 1 we missed his company, Year 2 we miss his company

Year 1 he had to make new friends, Year 2 he has a whole group of friends

Year 1 he had a mentor, Year 2 he will be a mentor

Year 1 he was nervous about class expectations, Year 2 he is nervous about class expectations

Year 1 Thanksgiving break was so far away, Year 2 Thanksgiving is still so far away

Year 1 he had the stomach flu alone, Year 2 we are praying for no stomach flu

Year 1 he had to find a new church family, Year 2 he is ready to see his church family

Year 1 I prayed for him continually, Year 2 I will continually pray for him

This year I pray for R to grow in his understanding of God, his quest for knowledge, and his understanding of the world.  I pray that he will love learning, and want to do his best.  I pray that he remembers that more than his grades that God cares about his heart and his passions.  I pray that he builds life time friends to add to the friendships that he already has, and I pray these friends stretch and grow him in ways he would not do on his own.  I pray that he seeks adventure, and will try new things.  I pray that he laughs and loves and learns this year.  I pray that he has fun, and really enjoys his 2nd year of college.  I pray that he finds joy in daily things, that he does not get bogged down with classes, or get overwhelmed with the big things.  I pray that he manages his time, and makes time for moments of doing nothing.  I pray that God protects his heart and his health and brings him back home again, a wiser and stronger boy than the one I drop off for year 2.  I pray for him because I love him.

Year 1 I was pretty sure I would not survive, Year 2 I know I will survive ( I just wont like it)

Go hug your kids, because Year 2 happens in a blink. I’m going to grab as many hugs as I can to tie my over until Thanksgiving.

jen

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The Silence is So Loud

I’m alone, the silence is deafening.  I can hear my own thoughts, the house moans, the washer clicks through the cycles, and the dishwasher drones on.

I am lonely.

Today I went to Chick-Fil_A, I spent time talking to a 4 year old.  A total stranger and his mother, who did not think it odd that a mom who they did not know was talking to them.  I enjoyed my conversation with him, when I realized how good it felt talking to a little one, I wanted to hug him.  But I did not.

I miss my baby girl from 8:05 until 2:30 when I pick her up in her Dad’s office, I let her play until the rest of the children are finished with school.

Home is noisy, and busy, and happy.  I like to listen to them play, and laugh, run through the house like caged puppies, and I am glad for the noise.  I do not know what I will do when the last one leaves for college.  I will have to get a job, or I will end up sitting in the Chick-Fil-A play place reading books aloud to children I do not know.

My friend is dreading tomorrow, she is dropping her only at college.  She is so sad.  Her silence will be deafening, and, I understand.  She will have no dirty dishes in her sink, no random “that is not dirty, you never wore it’ laundry put back into the hamper, no hair products all over the bathroom counter, she will not trip over shoes left out by the door.  Today I warned her about drop-off stress, about snippy teens and sad moms.  I promised her that she will be missed, and she is loved, but right now her child will not know how to express both the joy of new adventure and the fear of leaving the safety of home.  I promised her that she will survive.  We all do.  Her house will be painfully silent, and she realizes that.  My heart breaks for that time.

Time is brutal.
But for it to freeze we would grow weary of the daily.  Growth has to happen or we would be come as stagnate as a toddler pool on a hot summer day.  Time has to move forward in order for us to appreciate our lives and the loves we have.

So, my friends with young ones at home, when we smile at you as your toddler throws herself on the floor at Chick-Fil-A, or screams through his haircut, or uses the paper towel roll as a megaphone in Publix, we are smiling because we miss it.  And if a mom stops to tell you that time moves fast and to hold on tight.  Know that we realize that those tantrum days, and sleepless nights are endless and then they are over, one day the only noise in your house is the thoughts in your head, and your dishwasher, which is suddenly very loud.  And you will understand why we stop and smile.

Go hug your kids, they need your love, or maybe you need their hug?
jen

P.S. I know I have the college kids home still, they work most days, they don’t need me to pour chocolate milk, they don’t ask if we can watch the TV together, they don’t need me to go into the bathroom with me, and they do not run constant conversation with me.  They leave in days and I am so weepy about it.

 

Fathers Day 2019 at least the House did not catch fire… yet

FathersDay
2019

We should note first of all. The house did not catch fire. But if I’m being honest that would have just been fitting for how our evening was going.

While I began making our Trick Daddy Tacos Dinner, our little PS was helping unload the groceries.  Because cooking dinner at the same time as she helps put away groceries is super easy.  She put the healthy cereal in the storage container and she decided she needed a bowl, a few minutes later little A came in the kitchen looking for that healthy cereal. (Cinnamon Toast Crunch- not the chocolate that is just too much…  healthy is the regular kind)The rule is milk in bowls at the table. Since Keith is educating the children in classic television and Gilligan’s Island was on, both girls took dry cereal in their bowls to the family room to watch with him.  I have no idea what actually happened but I heard glass breaking, little A called out “its good”. I came back to see a Correlle bowl smashed on the edge of the rug in the family room and on the wood floor. Since most of the family was now trapped by glass J and I cleaned, swept, and vacuumed up the tiny shards of glass.

Not knowing that was just the beginning of the events I went back to the kitchen to continue making ‘tacos’ for dinner. ( we were actually going to have steak, the little kids wanted to trick their daddy)  I had the evening meal planned out so the cooking ended all at once.
steak
loaded baked potatoes with mushrooms
bacon wrapped asparagus
corn on the cob
mini baguettes
caesar salad
chicken for the non steak eaters
root beer floats
dessert by E

The corn cob water was beginning to boil, the potatoes had 10 minutes left, the table was mostly set.  The glasses had scoops of vanilla ice cream chilling back in the freezer. It appeared that the Father’s Day trick dad taco meal would be a success.

And then…

I wrapped the asparagus in bacon, slinging bacon grease all over the counter and floor, the timer for the potatoes dinged, I turned off the oven and went to start the grill.
Three.
Two.
One.
Ignition.
Nope.
No ignition.
The grill would not start.
The sprinkling turned into rain and the detailed timed out plans were quickly crumbling.

Keith took a crack at starting the grill for grilled ‘tacos’, it did not start for him either.

We opted to pan-sear the steaks, (because we had no other choice) sticking the asparagus in the hot oven, the skillet was heated to smoking hot for the steaks.  The kitchen, sitting room, dining room and family room all filled with smoke.  The oven was not cooking the bacon (I HATE MY OVEN) the smoke had not yet set off the fire alarm, because the boys grabbed all the fans in the house and began opening windows.  Rain was coming in the kitchen window as smoke billowed out.  Oil splattered on the floor from the pan of steaks, they were a little crispy on one side.  The bread did not go into the oven to warm, and a glass of root beer float fell on the dining room.  The loaded part of the potatoes was still in the fridge.  J set the meat to rest, I put the bacon asparagus in the hot pan to finish cooking.  R almost slipped taking food from the kitchen to the dining room.  My plans were shot and all I wanted to do was cry.  R saw me leaning over the oven, and checked to see if I was okay.  I sucked it up and declared that next year we really were having tacos they are much less stress.

Dinner was delicious, Keith was showered with love notes and gifts.  Both J and E spent their own money to gift him with things they knew he could use or would love.  Their sweet selfless love of their daddy touched my stressed heart!

We played a few games and even let him win!

What about you, any Fathers Day cooking disasters?

Go hug your kids, and maybe someday we can laugh about this disaster meal.
jen

p.s. follow me on Instagram Overholt9
(because I never changed the blog name and the baby is 5 now)

 

The First Day

Happy First Day of School my children. I pray that you are kind, to others, I pray that you are the one that people know they can trust, I pray that you speak to the lonely and that you include those left out. I pray that you know more of Jesus this year. That you will grow and learn and that you apply the things you learn. The world measures your success but God measures your heart. This year I pray your heart grows.

Go hug your kids, time moves too fast for this mama!
jen

Chasing My Thoughts…

Sometimes my mind races, in circles or down rabbit trails.
Sometimes it races towards disaster, the ‘What if’s’, and the ‘What will I do when…’  road.  That road is stressful, and often I start to panic and get upset.  It is very unsettling, I blame it on my creative mind.
Sometimes it slowly wanders all over the place, a ‘what about a beach trip, right now?’ or “I wonder how long it would take to drive up to C in that Great Big City and surprise him?’ ‘How will I ever survive with R gone next year?’ Sometimes messy, ‘so, if I want to make a dresser into an entertainment center, where can I get a hole saw? It is always fun to wander, often the plans are not even laid out, just day dreaming, all in good fun.

When my mind is wandering sometimes it is good for me to do a thoughtless task.  Scrubbing floors is the best thoughtless task I know to do, I don’t need to think, I just need to scrub.  Being down on my hands and knees facing the floor takes me away from distractions, lets my mind look inward, to pray, and let scripture chase away the cobwebs that are fogging up my mind, giving it a chance clear itself.  I have prayed hard for many situations down on my knees scrubbing the floors.  Sometimes I scrub them even when they are clean just so I can think and pray.  The benefit of that process is a clean floor and a clear mind.  I might not come to a solution but I can at least fully give that problem to God.  As scripture chases through my head, snippets of songs, and wise words spoken have a way of re-directing my thoughts and letting my anxiety ease up.  Another way I clear my mind is by crafting, or making things, sometimes with spray paint and brushes, or hot glue and a sewing machine.  I can focus on the task at hand and let my mind clean up and rest without forcing the issue.

Today my mind was racingSo I just let it create.
I had a few ideas I had been thinking about and today my mind needed a relaxing outlet a chance to create (really the floors could use a good scrub, but paint…much more fun)  I actually had planned on cleaning out, sorting, and organizing the craft areas (yes there is more than 1) so it looks more presentable, instead of like Hob’Lob threw up in my dining room.  But as soon as I picked up the first paintbrush to put it away, I blinked and we were in painting clothes.  We only painted white.  I had an idea, from a friend, and when I could not find what she suggested I went off-road and grabbed some cardboard and metal house ornaments, and 2 larger houses from HL to see if I could make my own idea work.

We worked together, PS and I, mostly in silence, while we painted, it was lovely.  A bath was needed to get all the paint and glitter off.  There are some ‘start point’ projects (A large February LOVE sign) and some things were completed, I just need to  glitter the larger houses when the paint is dry, then tall the houses will be done, I can display them in my January decorations for a few more days before it is time to pack it up for February.Glitter is my favorite!Over all I am pleased with the job and cannot wait for them to be fully dry before I display them in my January decorations.

What about you? What do you do when your mind is racing?  Do you work off your worry, do you drive through the country side, do you walk it off?
Go hug your kids, they need your love, and look for a way to help them when their minds race along faster than they can think.
jen

 

 

It’s a Monday but Tuesday is Coming.

It is Monday, we woke up to a Monday, and we started our Monday, just like she likes.  I have decided Monday is a girl, actually she is the mean girl in your 8th grade gym class.  You know the one, and just thinking about her makes you want to groan.  She is sneaky and mean, and she knows just how to frustrate you.

Monday give us, morning stomach aches, knots in our shoes, and forgotten gym clothes.   Monday give us, forgotten breakfast drinks and dried on spilled cereal milk.  She gives us ruined paintbrushes, scratchy pencils, and lost pens, Monday gives us red lights, slow traffic and big changes.  Monday gives us 2 different glasses of spilled milk at dinner, and just before bed, she gives us forgotten homework.  Monday gave us fights between sisters, and bits of trash on the floor.  Monday gave us ruined plans, and difficult tasks.

Monday gave us a chance to see God’s grace from the knots in our shoes to spilled milk.

Monday might have been that mean girl from gym class, but Tuesday, she is coming, she is your best friend in 8th grade, you found her after crying in the locker room because of Mean girl Monday.

I can’t wait for Tuesday.  Tuesday is a new day, and a new chance to see God’s mercies, and to experience His faithfulness.

go hug your kids, they just had Monday too, and they need your love and comfort
jen

 

 

I Will Always Wave

Almost every single morning I stand outside the playground, I stand and wait.  I stand and watch.  I stand with the handful of other parents, we visit and wait.  We stand and wait for recess to end and the children to line up.  We watch as they file off to their classrooms, and we wave.

I sit at Chick-fil-a facing the play place, I watch and I wave.  Every time she climbs to the top I wave, when she pops out of the tunnel I act startled, I wave.  I watch and I wave.

I sit in the audience waiting for the concert, and when she (and earlier he) enter the stage I watch as they scan the crowd and I give a subtle wave.

When he walks past me to go into the courtroom, I give a little wave.

When I enter the gym and I make eye contact, I give a little wave.

When he crosses the finish line I call out to him and I wave.

When I see them see me I wave.  I will always be my Children’s home base, I want to be their beacon, I want to be their safe place, their welcome home, the one who is cheering them on, waiting for them, watching their tricks, I stand to the sideline letting them shine, I wave.

I will always wave.

Go hug your kids, they need you to be the safety, they need your love.
jen