Sunday, August 21, 2016

Heavy Heart

Life is such a roller-coaster at times. In the last week or so we have rejoiced as deployments have ended for friends and with a family as they finally were able to meet their new son through adoption. But tonight I  have such a heavy heart tonight as I see friends walking the road of loss. 

Some are facing divorce ...a few totally blindsided....others by mutual agreements....some just tried of fighting to be their spouses one and only.... Each couple have such a different story, but each has heartache. All have children...I wonder the effects that will visit each of these.

Some friends are facing the loss of a parent in the near future...others dealing with ill children. 

Then I look at the news headlines. So depressing. I don't think CNN had one positive story in their news feed tonight. 

Good thing we have been told how the story ends...I know good is in the future. But at these times I think the only thing to say is "come, Lord Jesus, come." 


Friday, August 19, 2016

This and That

Today ends the second week of school and so far both are doing well. Melissa will have an easy senior year with her only hard class is AP English. She is taking a class at the local Vo-Tech that involves learning business and life skills such as writing a resume.  The rest of the day she has a job working at the middle school office.  And is very happy!!  Next semester she'll have a typing class, so it'll get even easier!

Benjamin on the other hand has a tough load this year. Right now he has pre-AP English, Trig, pre-AP Biology, and Spanish 1.  After meeting his teachers, we decided he probably won't learn anything in Spanish...yea....that teacher is not a winner...  But we did like his other three teachers.  His English teacher is one the other two have had and we just love her! She goes to our church and is in charge of the spring school play. Ben will be learning in there!  His biology teacher goes to our church as well and we think a lot of her and her family. I have had two of her kids in my new believer's class at church.  Of course, being an Ole Miss Alumni helps!  His trig teacher is a Cajun - full-on accent and everything! He's new to the school, but seems to know his math....just hoping he'll be able to pass on that math knowledge in a way Benjamin can understand.

William right now is in a computer/video marathon.... Recovering from his six weeks of being a camp counselor (and computer/video-less)  He really seemed to have enjoyed his time at the camp. He's opened to doing it again next summer, but hasn't made up his mind.  Drew and I would like him to work the full 12 weeks of summer or get an internship in his field of study. He has awhile before he has to decide.  He moves back to school Labor Day...he'll be ready to get back into a normal routine, I'm sure.

The rain...yea....we're getting lots of it!  So far around our house and area, the rain  hasn't caused any flooding.  Of course, in the south part of the state, that's not the story. Yesterday we got a really bad storm and lots and lots of water! The ditches on our street were near full, we had a nice moat around the house (again) and one neighbor's driveway was covered in about 6-8 inches of water. But when the rain slowed down and then stopped, the water drained into the nearby lake without causing any issues. It looks like rain will continue on and off until Tuesday....hopefully, we'll see the sun again before then.

Work for Drew and I both is going well. Both of us are getting some projects done and off our desks.  Last week Drew was working in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.  I sneaked off and stay over with him for two nights. We were able to catch up with one of his brothers and a friend from college.  As much as I love my children, it's nice to just be Kelley and Drew for a few hours instead of Mom and Dad.  He'll be off again next week - this time to DC....wish I could join him there! I did so enjoy my time in DC last month....just wished it could have been longer and had been able to see a few more friends in the area.

We do have few trips planned for this fall....trying to get a few football games in, but not sure if Ole Miss will be in the mix...the calendar is already getting full.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Adding Character

Several years ago when William was learning to drive, he backed into a lamppost late one night on our way to DC for Thanksgiving. I was not very happy with him to say the least. He just calmly said, 'Mom, I was just adding character to your van' 

Hmmmm. Yea. I could do without that. 

Thankfully, my father-in-law was able to show the boy how to get the mark of black paint off my van. And somehow, I survived him and Melissa learning to drive. 

And now it's Benjamin's turn. For the first few months I just refused to ride with him. My nerves just couldn't handle it. So, Drew took over the teaching. As with the others he is getting better every time he drives. 

Yesterday Benjamin and I had several errands to do to prepare for school starting on Monday. I knew he had not driven in well over a week, so I made him my chauffeur. 



Overall, he did well. I did make him let me drive at one point because he needed to back out of a tight spot at a strip mall. With a large truck on one side and an SUV on the other and not a lot of room behind us, I just didn't trust him to back out without hitting something. 

I think it hurt his feelings....oh. Well. Better than hurting another car!

Then we headed home. And he drove into our garage. And was looking at the wrong corner of the car. I yelled, "You're gonna hit the house! STOP!"

Too late. 


  But today he learned how to sand and repaint wood. And those marks on the front of the van? Not paint like his brother added. On, no. Not that easy. That's the metal under the paint. We'll be painting that soon as well. 

I guess now we're adding character to Benjamin. 

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Summer Happenings....

One of the things we have each summer is soccer workouts - "conditioning".  While there's not a soccer ball around, it's usually pretty brutal...weights...running... lots of each.  I'm so glad it's not me!

After the second day I asked Benjamin how it was, he replied it was better than yesterday.  I asked why was that?

He responded that he took both his asthma meds.

Really?  Hmmmm  What a great idea!

I said, "Ok....let's hear it: Mom, you were right."

Benjamin looked at me and said, "Mom, you were right....this time."

Oh, that boy!

___________

Melissa was one of two girls to represent her school at Girl's State.  She was so very thrilled! She had been worked very hard to be in position to be one of the ones that got to attend. Over all, I think she had a good time.  She made some new friends.  But I do think she and the other girl from here were very surprised at how secular some things were and how mean some other girls were.

They had to sing chats through out the week.  A few were done at in the closing ceremony and I was not really thrilled about them. One was done in honor of the dance which was the only time the boys of Boy's State and the girls were allowed to talk and mingle.  The chant talked about being unhappy that they were all "cold sober". Hmmmmm.....hello! These are 16 and 17 years old!!  Why encourage alcohol drinking at this age???!!!

In Girl's State they practice government.  Melissa was a district attorney and even had to try a case. Now, the case was silly.  It seemed some one stepped on a crack and did in fact break her mother's back.  (As I said, silly! But it gave the girls a sense of how trials work.) Melissa talked about how some of the judges were just down right mean.  So mean, that they had to be told to stop by the counselors.   Melissa was not use to that! 

But as I said, I think she had a good time over all.

_________

Both Melissa and Benjamin went to youth camp with our church. Both had a good time - as usual!  The speaker/preacher turned out to be a former Ole Miss football player. Melissa did get a chance to tell him she was planning to attend Ole Miss.

The last day of the youth trip, they spent the day white water rafting.  I think they had a blast! Which proves that have lots of their daddy in them!

____________

Last week we put Benjamin in a soccer camp.  There might have been a slight miscommunication between Benjamin and I....He knew he had camp...and just never asked about the details....I knew the camp was all day...and just never thought to tell Benjamin that it was all day...  Imagine his surprise when at lunch time he didn't go home...but continued to play soccer...in 100 degree heat....

Ben's not usually very animated....well....yeah....he was VERY ANIMATED! "Mom!! I could have died!! It's hot. I thought this was three hours - MOM, IT'S SIX HOURS!! SIX HOURS!!"

I was a bad mom and just laughed. 

I'm happy to say that he did in fact, not die.  But did do a lot of soccer. Hopefully, we'll see some results this fall during soccer season.



Okay - that's a few of the things going on this summer....which is close to an end.... School starts August 8.


Oh - William.... yes, I do have that other child.  He is in Texas working. We have heard from him once....I thin he's called his sister more.... Which is par for the course with William...

Thursday, June 30, 2016

My Yesterday

My yesterday actually started the night before as we were leaving for soccer and William's car would not start. Dead.  As a door nail, as we say in the South.  The remote wouldn't even unlock the car.

So.  We moved all the soccer gear to my van and off we went. On our way William called his dad - whom, of course, is out of town.  Of course, he is.  Something breaks is a sure sign of that.  Anyway. He and his father had a long conversation. When he got off the phone, William said, yeah, he said we should jump it and take it to the dealership. I said that was an awfully long conversation. William said "I just shorted it to the important stuff."

Remember that as I go on....

So, we got up Wednesday and went about my original plan: deep clean the house with free manpower: my two fully-able-body teenage boys.

Can you feel their excitement??  I'm sure they are now planning for jobs that pay enough to hire a housekeeper.

Yes, they complained.  Yes, they grumbled. And yes, they probably did not clean as well as I would have liked, BUT! getting at least one layer of dirt off the baseboards, crown-molding, ceiling fans, is better than nothing.  And I didn't have to do it my self.

I did other cleanings....scrubbed the kitchen, laundry, floors... Sadly, even after we cleaned for several hours and were very tired, I could still see things that needed to be done.  But we'll just have to wait another day.  It was after lunch and we needed to still deal with William's car.

Since it's a hybrid, things like the battery work differently.  So, we pulled the book out and read how to jump it off.  I texted my friend with the jumper cables to come on over. 

About that time William said something about weren't we to call Toyota??  Maybe set up an appointment??  I was like....no.....they can just work us in...it's just a battery. I'm sure they do this all the time.

Then Drew called.  Yea....apparently, he and William talked more details that William told me.  (Are you surprised? I'm not.) 

Backstory: About a month ago we took William's car in for normal stuff like oil change.  And here's where the communication failed.  I remember the discussion being that the hybrid battery was low and would need replacing at some point soon and it was 3K. ouch! So, we would wait.  The boys remember the story as the regular battery was low and they didn't have one in stock and so, we couldn't take care of it and so, we would just wait. 

Which is why Drew told William last night to call Toyota BEFORE we took it in to see if they had one in stock and if not, then order one.

All that was not told to me.  ME - the one  was talking care of all the details.

So, I texted my friend NOT to come over, I called Toyota - and was put on hold.  Then it took hours for someone to call me back.  But they did have one in stock and we could come on down.

But of course, its not that easy.

We did get my friend to come over with the jumper cables....it took longer than normal, but we got the car started and drove it to the dealership..

Who acted like they had no idea why I was there.

Urrggggg..

Lessons of the day:  Bad teenage cleaners are better than no cleaners.  Always, ALWAYS get the details from the husband....not the teenage boy.


Saturday, June 25, 2016

Lazy Weekend

I love lazy mornings... and very glad today is one of them. Not much has happened this week...I did get a few things done, but with a few migraines, I read more than being productive at cleaning my house or working on a new quilt (that I have cut out, but have not had the motivation to start to lay out and piece together.) I even had the time off from work, since summer is a slow time for us.

I did come across a few new authors and have read them this week: Lisa Phillips and Karen E Olson.  Both write mysteries...and I enjoyed both.  The Olson book had a smattering of bad language, but not so much that I gave up on it. I'm looking forward to finding more from both at my library.

Today's main goal is to get Melissa ready for camp that starts tomorrow.  She has some scholarship opportunities through this camp and her and Drew will be finalizing those applications today.  She's a pretty good writer, but her dad? He's GREAT at editing things.

And tonight's main goal??? To make it to the James Taylor concert on time!!!  Should be a very entertaining concert!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Father's Day Weekend

We were able to spend this past weekend with Drew's family.  Christmas was the last time the kids and I were able to visit. It was nice seeing the new house my in-laws now have.  It's perfect for them!  

We were able to get a few chores done for them (ok - to be honest I did not really do any chores...but a few of my sister-in-laws did and Drew and the boys did....Melissa and I got some shopping in...). Also, we got a few morning walks in and were able to watch the sun set over the Mississippi - both are favorite past times in Natchez!

We ended the weekend on a sad note as we attended a funeral for a beloved uncle. It was so nice to see so many of the extended family, but hated that it was at a funeral.  But Uncle George lived a long and happy life....we're trying to focus on that.

One of the funnier moments of the weekend actually happened before we left town.  I had the kids give Drew his father's day gifts before we left so we wouldn't have to keep up with them.  All the kids are very un-inspired when it comes to gifts: they all gave him chocolate.  But, at least, he shares with me!  The funny moment was when we read the card the kids gave him.  William signed his first  - AND LAST NAME!! As if there was another son named William?? And while Benjamin didn't write his last name, he did put his last initial.  Once again, as if there was another son named Benjamin.

Who knows what these boys are thinking!!  (And maybe perhaps even funnier - this is not the first time William has signed a card to one of his parents this way!!)