Wednesday, October 26, 2011


When I was a young mother I wanted nothing more than to be a stay at home mom. But when you marry a student, a studying-for-the-ministry student at that, the odds of being a single income family are slim. Very slim indeed. And so for the most part it never really worked out for me to be a stay at home mom. We were creative in my income earning endeavors. I worked nights. I had an in-home crafting business. I worked days and worked my hours around my husbands hours so in all those years we only had a daycare provider for just a few months. Mostly, as Dr. Laura used to say - my husband and I were our kids parents. But in my heart of hearts, I didn't want to go to work - I just wanted to be a mom. And I always said if I couldn't be a stay at home mom then someday, SOMEDAY I was going to be a stay at home grandmother.

I never realized how prophetic those words would become.

The last 12 years I have been working at the university that all of my daughters have attended and graduated from. Since Jess will be graduating in May it has made me realize that I now have some options.

And who doesn't like options?

My two daughters, who are working mama's, have realized I have options as well. And they have begged politely asked me to quit my job and help them take care of their babies since they have to work outside the home for this season in time. How I wish I could have had my mother looking out for my babies in those early years - it would have been so comforting to me.

The whole thought of having such an important role in my grandbabies lives fills me with joy and wonderment and in some ways I feel as though "the years the locusts have eaten are being restored to me". Not in the sense that I get to be a mother again, but that I get to enjoy this newest season of my life to the fullest in a way that will be most fulfilling and satisfying to me. I see it as a gift. An opportunity to invest myself completely in the lives of four little ones who have so many gifts and abilities and possibilities to offer our world. They are so amazing!

So, mid-January I will be hanging up my "Career woman" hat for good (I can't believe I am typing those words!) and putting on my Grandmother hat - on a 40 hour a week basis! I am so happy about this.

Do I expect it to be easy? No

Do I expect to be exhausted? Yes

Do I worry if I can do a good enough job? Yes

Have a wondered what I am getting myself into? A little

But overall, I have a peace about it. I have so many plans and ideas I can't wait to try out. I am putting together a little pre-school program for my 3 year olds and am working out a structured schedule to keep every day. I am a strong proponent of stucture and believe with four little ones it will be the key to success! I look so forward to being in their little lives so much of the time. This just feels like a natural progression for me and I couldn't be more thrilled about it.

The future is looking very, very happy to me!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

This and That

I have no idea where October has gone. September either for that matter. And the scary thing is that soon we will be turning the page to November and then Christmas is all but upon us. Yikes, I am not ready.

After a very enjoyable summer I am not at all ready to think about winter. Fall is usually my very favorite season of the year but this year all it makes me think of is winter - and I'm just not ready to face it. And we don't even have hard winters. But I'm not ready to give up dinners on the patio, fresh air through screen doors and even mowing the lawn. We have started the fireplace the last couple of mornings as we read our Bibles and drink our coffee. But the afternoons are lovely and we especially appreciate taking our walks in the late afternoon.

I have been a bit of a travel bug lately. In one month I have taken three trips: a work trip to San Diego, a work trip with my husband to the mountains, and I just returned from a week in New York City and Washington DC, the highlight of the trip being that I was able to spend three whole days with my NYC daughter. We had such a great time together and she loved showing off her city. My mother and sister went along so we had a real girls week together - it was so much fun. I have vowed however, never to return to Washington DC unless my husband goes with me. He loves history as much as I and it was impossible to enjoy everything fully knowing how much he would have loved it as well. I read the book "Killing Lincoln" and finished it just in time to tour Ford's Theater. The book is a fascinating read and it was perfect to read it at just the same time I visited the sites. I highly recommend it - the writing is superb and you feel like you are actually there observing all the events of that terrible night.

Today we all went to the Pumpkin Patch! I have been looking forward to doing this all year. There is a local farm that hosts a spectacular family/kid friendly event every year and it is so awesome. There are rides, activities, a petting zoo, pony rides, concessions and we always end the day riding a hay wagon out to the pumpkin field to pick out a pumpkin. This is a family tradition for sure!

At the time we took this photo a little barrel train was trucking by and as you can see it captured the kids attention!

I finally put my fall decorations out - they are my favorite but with all my traveling this year I haven't found a minute to spare. I love the colors and warm, cozy feeling they provide. Lots of candles and pumpkins and fall flowers make for a comfortable, pleasant home.

After much discussion my husband and I made a decision to downsize a bit. My husband had a large and very fancy diesel pick-up truck that he really enjoyed. And although we could afford it, we began to discuss the wisdom in having something we didn't really need and wondered if it was a wise way to use our resources. The upkeep and maintenance of the vehicle was quite large - just changing the oil was an enormous amount of money. We had to keep a separate savings account to save money for when we needed to buy new tires for it. As we talked about it we began to realize that just because we could have something so nice it didn't mean we should. So he sold it and with the money we paid off the loan and bought a smaller, simpler pick-up. It is in very nice condition, it is very comfortable and it looks nice. It will be much less expensive to maintain and best of all it is not a diesel - a real perk to both of us. Neither of us liked the noise or ride of the big fancy truck. We feel like we have made a very smart decision and when you consider the payment, insurance and maintenance money we are saving we have actually given ourselves a very nice raise. A real blessing came in that we sold it to a SouthWest airline pilot. In addition to the price he paid he also gave us 8 free airline tickets to fly anywhere SouthWest flies. We also discovered they plan to start flying to Hawaii just in time for our 35th wedding anniversary! You can guess how two of the tickets will be used! We are feeling like we made a very wise decision and we couldn't be happier with our older, simpler vehicle.

My knitting needles have been working overtime as I have begun making Christmas gifts. We are having mostly a handmade Christmas this year. I am knitting sock monkey hats for all by grandbabies and also a special scarf for my mother-in-law. It is one that I have already made for myself and she loved it and asked me to make her one. I also have a couple of secret projects going.

Right now I am watching Boise State playing Air Force on the blue turf. I'm trying hard not to be jealous that my son-in-law is actually there! What a perfect fall afternoon to be at a game. And we are watching the World Series with great interest. My husband grew up in the St. Louis area and has been a Cardinal's fan all his life. So we are cheering them on and it has been quite fun. Go Card's!!!

Well, that about sums about the comings and goings around here. Enjoy the weekend and give thanks for all the blessings He bestows!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011