Five Kid Frenzy: Act I and Intermission

I don’t know that I’ve ever had a more whirl-wind week! Every day starts bright and early at 6 am when my alarm clock goes off. Not that I get out of bed at that time… I usually tell my phone to snooze at least five times before rolling out of bed. My day with the kids starts around 7:30 am. I’ll spare you the details of the daily routine. It usually contains swords/guns (both made out of the same blocks) and cars with their loud and frequent sound effects, colors and coloring books, letters, numbers, lunch time, diapers, wipes, messes, cleaning messes, whining, arguing, bargaining, ‘they touched me!’, ‘he broke/took my sword/gun/car!’, ‘Keely, can I ask you a question?’, ‘I want a snack!’, and (most mercifully) quiet time. Some days I’m able to stay on schedule, and others… well, it’s a miracle that I make it to the end of the day and I haven’t given one or 2 of them away. Quiet time usually ends just before their dad gets home from work, and then I get to come back home and pass out.

I expected a lot of things this week, but I never expected to be this worn out at the end of every day. I barely have enough mental energy to get home, find something to eat, check facebook, and then stick in a movie so that I can have something else do the thinking for me. I am determined to be better this week about keeping up with their school schedule, and doing what I can to be more alert and attentive to them. (while not going completely insane.)

Yesterday and today were spent in blessed relaxation. I’ve returned to music and being crafty as a means of therapy. I’ve made hats for all 5 kids, and spent my spare time listening to music that fills me up. I’ve also made time to read my scriptures every night, listen to a general conference talk every morning, and pray as many times as I can possibly fit in during the day. I am learning so much, and I can’t wait to see what fruits will be borne from this experience.

The curtain rises early, and I’ve got my 8 hour warning, so it’s off to bed for me. The adventure starts again tomorrow!

Five Kid Frenzy: The Prologue

Tonight I watched the kids for Richard and Val while they went to dinner and ran some last minute errands before she leaves tomorrow. I’d been there all day, but I took over at about 6 ish and they got home around ten. It was a low-key evening just dinner, half a movie, and bedtime… and I’m exhausted! It didn’t seem like that much in the middle of it all, but once I had them in bed and I slowed down… I hit a brick wall. HARD. I’m really glad I got this small taste before I have to dive in head first on Monday.

I am SO excited for the next two weeks and what they will teach me! ūüôā I feel that if I can do this, I can do anything! I know that my Heavenly Father is supporting me,and that as long as I don’t let him, the devil can’t have any say in how I feel or what I do. I know that every night I’ll be twice as tired as I am right now, but I know that this will push me to grow and change in ways that only God knows right now!

I told the kids tonight that I’m going to be playing Mary Poppins for the next two weeks while their mom is gone. So, in true Mary Poppins form, I’ll take my spoonful of sugar, some laughter (ceiling tea-time not included), a bag of birdseed, some sidewalk chalk, throw in a bit of imagination, and it will be a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious two weeks!

Singles’ Awareness Day

As I have no specific valentine this year, I want to just send this out to everyone who has, does, or ever will love and support me.

“Sometimes, when we lose ourselves in fear and despair, in routine and constancy, in hopelessness and tragedy, we can thank God for Bavarian sugar cookies. And, fortunately, when there aren’t any cookies, we can still find reassurance in a familiar hand on our skin, or a kind and loving gesture, or subtle encouragement, or a loving embrace, or an offer of comfort, not to mention hospital gurneys and nose plugs, an uneaten Danish, soft-spoken secrets, and Fender Stratocasters, and maybe the occasional piece of fiction. And we must remember that all these things, the nuances, the anomalies, the subtleties, which we assume only accessorize our days, are effective for a much larger and nobler cause. They are here to save our lives. I know the idea seems strange, but I also know that it just so happens to be true.” —– from ‘Stranger Than Fiction’

Thank you for being MY bavarian sugar cookies. I love you, and I am grateful to you for all of your support, prayers, advice, sympathy, empathy, laughter, music, time, and most of all, your love.

On the Brink

Have you ever made a decision that you KNEW was going to change your life in wonderful ways that you’d never imagined? When you made that decision, did¬†you suddenly see the line? Y’know, the one that, once you’ve crossed, you can never go back? Did you want to run toward it just because you’re dying to know¬†who you will be on the other side? Did the anticipation build almost to the breaking point with each seemingly eternal step forward? And when you get to the line,¬†and are about to step over, do you look back?

I would imagine that engagement, marriage, expectant parenthood, the birth of a child, and similar landmark life events must feel something like this. It is not, however, any of these that I look forward to.

For the next 3 weeks I will have the opportunity to play Mary Poppins to the children of a good friend of mine. She and her husband are the parents of 5 beautiful kids, a set of triplets, 2 boys and 1 girl, they have adopted 2 special needs boys, and they are in the process of adopting 2 more special needs girls all of whom are under the age of 8. Insane? Certifiable? Of course! Wonderful? Sainted? Super-heroes? Yes, they are!

Adoption is a long and involved process, particularly when dealing with international adoption. Bulgaria, the country with which they are currently¬†working, requires that adoptive parents fly out and spend time with the children before bringing them home. This is where I come in. While my friend flies out to¬†meet the girls that she will bring home, I get to take care of her kids. I’ll be staying nearby with her family, and I’ll have the nights and weekends to myself. She¬†also informs me that there is a singles ward and an institute class that meets near their home!

You skeptics out there are thinking that I’m just as insane as they are, and you’re probably right, but you should know that I am not so naive that I think this will be easy. I¬†fully expect for this to be the most challenging and rewarding learning experience outside of motherhood that I will ever have. I also fully expect to emerge on the other side of this opportunity with more determination, strength, courage, and the motivation to pursue and accomplish the goals that I have and will set out for myself. I know that my experience with this will stretch and push me in ways that will prepare me for whatever comes next, and I pray for the guidance of the Lord and for the faith to turn to Him in everything.

I am grateful and so excited for this opportunity. I know that my Heavenly Father has placed me here so that I may do the most good, and so that the most good can be done in me. I’m on my way up and out of this valley and, without thought or regard for the path behind me, I will “press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men.”

note: You can follow my friend and her family through her blogs, linked below.

From the Trenches of Motherhood
From the Trenches of Adoption
Perfectly Able