Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Not Enough

I've had a hard time writing this summer.  Maybe you could tell.  People read this thing now and it can be scary.  No, not throngs, I have no grand delusions there, but enough that it makes me think twice before posting, well, anything really.  

Will someone be offended?  Will it come out right?  What about so-and-so who I know thinks differently?  What about that person who will use whatever I write as ammunition to hurt me? Why would I write about that?  What if it's too perfect looking?  Too goofy?  Too serious?

So I shut up.  I post pictures of my kids and superficial thoughts from my days, memories I want to keep and store and would rather remember than the bleeding mess that is my heart lately.  
Let's just not go there today.
Oh, it's not that I think people shouldn't write about the hard stuff or that I am necessarily afraid to admit my weaknesses and wounds.  Lord knows I have enough.  And I'm not afraid to tell all about it over a cup of coffee, at least, if I think it might help (and we got the trust thing going on).  I just don't have the words lately.  They somehow disappeared along with the time.  The mediocre words that used to be there, even those have been stolen to the point of tears.  And gosh, it smarts when you get a few squeaks out and someone uses your vulnerability against you.  The theft repeats.

It's been a hard summer.  A summer of questioning and struggle, a summer where it feels like I'm quite literally fighting a battle and where I can practically feel the scalpel on my heart scraping away at my attachments.  At the very same time it's been a summer of hope and depth and relationships and love.  I don't understand how it can be both ways but yet it is.  

Through it all the whispers do their whispery whispering thing.
Not enough
Not enough
Not enough
They invade every thought, every conversation, every relationship, every post, every prayer.  

I cannot be enough.  
I want to help, but I can't.  I want to be included, but I don't fit.  I want to share, but I'm shut down.  I want to see, but I'm blinded.  I want to succeed, but I fail.  I want to celebrate, but I'm pulled right back down.  
My heart aches for those who are suffering so much more than I ever will.  What can I do?
The chorus repeats:  Not enough.

I fall again into His arms and tell Him how much I know I am not enough. 
I know it, Lord.  Oh, I know it so hard.
And once again He reminds me.  No, darling, no you're not.
I am.
I am Enough.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Skulls, Fires, Animal Parts, and a Lip Sync Throwdown

Wow, that title sounds pretty hard core, doesn't it? ;)

The boys and Brian have slowly been tearing down the old decrepit chicken coop that was here when we moved in.  I wish we could have rehabbed it but it was pretty unsalvageable and is now a mixture of neighborhood eyesore/tetanus opportunity.  Over the years we've found a lot of treasures in there that were left over the last, oh, 80-100 years.  Antique bottles, jugs, pipes, distressed barn wood and the latest find:
lovingly brought to my kitchen counter as I was preparing dinner one fine weekday.  Nothing says love to a mother like animal skulls and glass shards, I tell you what.
Any guesses as to what species this may have belonged to?  

Last Friday was supposed to be a little belated birthday campout for John Paul.  Alas, it just wasn't working out with friends' schedules and it morphed into a family bonfire for the Solemnity.  

And how cute is this happening during preparations for the fire?
He wasn't mowing but inching along and feeling mighty grand about it all.

Super fun times.  We even got to pray a Rosary round the fire with a whole gaggle of kids and friends and it was pretty sweet.

I felt guilty that John Paul never really got a real birthday cake way back on the day in June so I put these together as a lame atonement:

Had the campout happened it would have been a whole cake decorated with a camping scene but these were kinda cute, too.

Speaking of creativity...
I felt sorta proud of my attempts to welcome two of my siblings to their new (and first!) homes the past few weeks.

I was inspired by this picture and had a bit too much fun at the dollar store.
In case you're wondering all that's in there:  fly swatter, plunger, screwdriver set, paint roller and cover, paintbrush set, outlet divider, two hand towels, spray bottle, duct tape, tape measure, picture hanging kit, lightbulbs, microfiber sponges, and a gift card to Lowe's for all the stuff that they probably needed instead :)

In case you were wondering, you can now add 'chipmunk' to the growing list of animals that would like to live with us (joining bats, flying squirrels, mice, voles, wolf spiders, wasps, crane flies, and an assortment of other insects).  I heard what sounded like a bird chirping behind the piano when I came downstairs a few mornings ago.  Maggie was acting funny, too.  When Brian pulled out the piano, a chipmunk ran out and thus began the early morning ripping apart of the front room to catch said rodent.

I love all their catching devices.

They eventually chased it right out the door still alive but hopefully scarred and turned off from ever trying to live with us again.  We left for Mass while Brian put the room back together.

And because my husband is TOTALLY NORMAL I was welcomed home to this gift on my kitchen counter:
On a dinner plate, no less.  
Do chipmunks just lose their tails?  How did it come off?  WHY WOULD MY HUSBAND LEAVE THIS ON MY COUNTER? 
So many questions.

Happy feast of the Coronation!
Today we celebrate Mary as Queen of heaven.  We like to use this day to do our crowning.  I'm not sure why May crownings are not really August crownings because it seems to make a lot more sense liturgically and all.

And in case you're wondering how we'll be celebrating:

Bonus homeschool points for Latin integration

"And a great portent appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars"
Revelation 12:1

Oh.  And then there's this.  I'd like to dedicate this entry into the TATL Lip Sync Battle to the husband who is my greatest encouragement in making a fool of myself on the internet:

Eh.  Not our best but we didn't want to make any of the other contestants feel bad or anything.  The boys got the final say on song choice.  Before this one there was a completely horrendous solo attempt at Michael Jackson's Black or White.  Then I got nervous that people would think I was making some sort of current events commentary and we would get death threats or something.  Not even kidding.  #crazy

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Lake House Adventures (and the kids had fun, too.)

The other day we had the fantastic opportunity to spend an entire day at the lake house of a friend of a friend.  It was such a gift.  Oh my goodness, did we need this.  And God just chose to throw the perfect day at us weather-wise to make it that much better.  In a month filled with cool, cloudy, rainy days, we had the one blue sky, eighty degree day to soak in summer.

Coolest water playground ever

These friends just opened up their home (and all their toys!) to us, strangers they had never met, and gave us a day we truly needed as a family.  A day to have fun and play and laugh and rest and swim and make crazy great memories.  How generous is that?

So much fun all day long.

Tim pretty much let us take over his jet ski because he's the best :)

How awesome is this?

No pictures of me getting it up to 58 mph.  It was fast and wild and glorious.  We must've been out there a half hour or more.  As I was riding I just kept thanking God for the gift of being there, trying my best to soak it in.  

This guy was so adventurous and it was so great to see!

And all this guy could think about was fishing and waiting to take a boat ride.

No fish were harmed in the making of these memories.

After lunch our hosts took us out on the boat for some tubing.  The boys first time on a speedboat.

So. Super. Fun.

A turn for the slow riders :)

You better believe I took my turn with three of the other adults.  It was insane.  Besides the time we were going so fast and turning so sharp that the whole thing flipped and I got the wind knocked out of me and for a split second thought I had died but I hadn't and I was just floating in the middle of the lake trying hard to breathe, it was awesome.  Even that part was pretty sweet in retrospect.  Brian came up out of the water screaming my name because he was so nervous for me.  It was like we were in some dramatic movie.  Very romantic.  I lost an earring and Tim lost a shoe (it was rescued).  The screenplay will be out soon.

After that little episode we took a break and stopped the boat for some middle of the lake swimming.  (Shoe rescue in progress.)

Oh man, this boy was in his glory all day long.

And I even got a few minutes on the boat to close my eyes and soak it in all luxurious-like.  
Just practicing for my future movie star life.

So so grateful for such a gift.

It was a pretty, happy, funny, and real sort of day all day long so I'm
linking up this slightly scattered {phfr} with Leila and the ladies.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Blueberries, Finally

(and three more of those besides!)

Our garden has come to naught, there is nary a pear on our dozen trees, but by golly we finally got our blueberries.

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