Last weekend was one to remember. We packed up and hit the road for a looong drive. Baby sister got married. They tied the knot on a little island/peninsula Saturday evening. It was quite the event. And I didn't take a single picture. Not one. These two are thanks to my FIL.
All three children were in the wedding...and in their defense, it was a long day...by the time we were lined up to walk down the aisle, Little Man was angry mad and in a fit of tears...accusing me of lying to him because he wouldn't be carrying the rings down the aisle. I felt like I was having an out of body experience. Just the whole thing. I threatened to discipline him and then thought, "WHAT HAVE I DONE? If he doesn't get it together and I go through with my threat, I'll miss the wedding!" He pulled it together. Barely.
And then Little Bit - oh dear. She was exhausted. And on the brink of a melt down. I wound up carrying her down the aisle and held her for most of the ceremony. She...um...licked my face. Bit my hair. Passed gas, pulled back and said, "that was a burp." She got down and walked around some. I thought I was going to die. Once the ceremony was over and it was time to walk down the aisle, she shouted and threw her arms up and ran down the aisle. It was insanity. Insanity.
The par-tay afterwards was in a barn. Everything was super cute and the music was super loud and the children partied hard. Sister actually twisted her ankle busting a move. She's finally walking normally again. They all got a rush from their caffeine/cake consumption. Where was their mother?
My dad was at the wedding. He hugged my mom. I almost burst into tears. Because for a second - just a second, it was as it "should" be. My mom and my dad...together. I love my dad. I love him so much. So. Much. And our family - the one I grew up in - there is much brokenness there. Many, many deep wounds. The ache makes me long for the day when we stand before our Redeemer and He heals all our wounds and makes us whole. Because we are so very broken.
Standing in that barn, at my sister's wedding reception, with rap music blaring, I had a conversation with my dad and my mom - together. The three of us - that's the first time in over eight years. It was surreal. I wanted to pretend we were whole again. But we aren't. And this, this broken mess, this ache and bitterness and anger in my heart, this is part of our Gospel story. That we are broken. Unable to fix ourselves. Deep in sin. Sinking in sin. Sin sick. And still, He redeems. He doesn't turn His face away. Instead He pours out His love and His grace. It was grace that we stood there. It was grace that I didn't crumble. It was all His grace. He binds up the brokenhearted. His grace...it truly is sufficient. Enough.
Sunday morning we met up with mama, both my sisters, their husbands, and all the kiddos at Cracker Barrel for breakfast. And it was cray-zay! We were the biggest table there. I asked mama if she ever dreamed her three little girls would grow into such a large crowd. It served as a good reminder that this parenting of little ones - oh, it's exhausting, and so not forever. In the grand scheme of things, it's a rather short period of life. Kind of sobering.
We've added an extra little guy to our fam for the week. My nephew is staying with us while my sister and brother-in-law honeymoon. We've had so much fun. Those little heads stair step down when they all line up. I love having four! I get teary thinking about taking him home. It's been wonderful. So precious and sweet.
Little Man starts soccer this week and couldn't be more pumped. While I
put the rotisserie chicken in the oven in it's original plastic container to warm it up and succeeded in melting the plastic container which was just awesome, so I pulled off the melted plastic and didn't say a word to anyone and introduced my family to all sorts of cancer inducing junk made dinner Sunday night, The Engineer took the littles out to practice in the backyard. Totally adorable.
School has begun! This was the pile-o-junk I needed to sort...I've stared at it all summer. It's been a weight on my shoulders. It goes back double - like - another entire row of junk behind what you see.
I finally put the rest of the children's work in their binders. Whew. It was super encouraging to see that HUGE stack of papers and go - "Wow! We actually finished! Here's for real proof!!!"
I stacked and brought out the new stuff, put away the old. I kept the 5-K curriculum out. Little Man will be using the same curriculum at school. I figure it'll be fun to work on it some at home. We'll see if that actually happens. (wink)
Favors from the wedding...all week long their have been choruses of "can we have a gum ball?" I think I'm either going to give them the entire jar of gum balls and say "Eat them all. NOW." Or I'm going to hide them.
So we are rocking some homeschool. There have been tears. There has been discipline. Second grade is "so much harder!" Well, not really. I'm just holding her to a higher standard. And that is a good thing.
It's been a total juggling act with these three during school. Little Man and I have done some reviewing and the other two have "played" at school...scribbling on worksheets, etc.
Little Bit is a pistol. Like, she is so bad. I'm a little concerned about what her behavior will be like at school. Perhaps the consequences at home aren't severe enough? She's adorable. And a punk. And I say that with a giant smile on my face. She makes us laugh all the time. And we're constantly trying to hide the laughter. She's that kind of bad, if you know what I mean. It's just funny. I know it shouldn't be, but it is. Of course, it's painful, too - on my heart, and at times physically, too. Yesterday I told her "no" on something she wanted. So she marched over to me in her pink Hello Kitty rain boots and kicked me in the shin. I don't think she will do that again. I know it reflects what's going on in her heart - but goodness. I had a good laugh. The audacity. It's right up there with the afternoon she slapped me across the face when I told her it was time to take a nap. I mean, need I say more?
Only once durning school this week have I resorted to plugging her in front of Dora. And I think I whispered a prayer of thanks to the Lord for modern technology and Netflix and Dora! Sanity, I tell you.
Last night, in celebration of my nephew's last night with us (so sad!) the children voted to take him to their favorite spot in our new local.
We had a blast. They were crazy insane. The younger three spent hours playing in the backyard/woods yesterday afternoon. They were filthy dirty. Like - dirt on their skin kind of dirty. Smelly. Whew they stunk! So we packed em up and headed out.
And it was wonderful.
Love these kids.
My sweet nephew. It's been a spend the night party every night since he arrived. All four children piled into the girls' room. I love it!
I think it's really true. The days are long and the years are short.
Though we'd had a great dinner at home, The Engineer and I decided to take the kids for a little post play treat. We headed to a local joint for nachos. At 8:30 at night. With four stanky, sweaty kids. They practically inhaled what was set before them. (We did, too.) It was awesome.
And I breathe in His grace and it's sufficiency. It is especially sweet right now. I breathe it in deep. And I am thankful I am not my own. That He redeems and He is good.
Happy Thursday, y'all!