My boys have been on a roll lately. Too bad I've been not so great about writing it all down. But I'm determined to get better, so without further ado, here's this month's conversations with my goofy kiddos. I'll try to get better about documenting for next month!
Blake: So, uh, are you going to make lunch soon, Mom?
Me (realizing it's really late): Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry. I'll start lunch right after I finish this.
Blake (sounding an awful lot like Oliver Twist): It's okay Mama. It only hurts a little.
Blake (playing video game): Crap!
Me: Blake, don't use that word.
Blake: Sorry Mom. Things were just really intense.
Me (two minutes later, after making a mistake): Well crap.
Blake: Mom, you really shouldn't use that word.
Christopher: It's okay Blake. Things were just really intense.
Christopher: I feel sorry for myself.
Me: Why is that, sweetie?
Christopher: Because I'll never know what it's like to have a child as awesome as me.
I've realized the thing I miss most about having the boys here: the ability to turn to them and ask them to pray for someone. Three times this week, I've been hit with a whammy that could only be met with prayer. While I know I'm perfectly capable of making the request, and I do, there's something reassuring about my boys coming in agreement with me in prayer. They're serious about their prayer, too. Probably because they've seen the power of it. When I tell them a need, they stop what they're doing and talk to God, right then and there.
On a lighter note, I'm finding some irony in the fact that when the boys are here, I'm the task master making everyone clean. Today is our day to deep clean the house. I looked around and realized I had no desire to do so. Instead, after wrapping up my work day, I sat on the couch and watched When Calls the Heart on Netflix. It's a cute show and I think I needed a couple of hours to make like a vegetable. Or maybe I need my boys to keep me on my toes as much as they need me.
I made one small pizza tonight for Adam and I, and I put all kinds of crazy things in the crust - because I could. It takes four large pizzas to fill up a house full of teenage boys. So that's a perk.
I took a picture of the sink today to prove to my boys that it is made of stainless steel, not dishes.
I miss my kiddos. One more day. I've yet to rest while they're gone. Or write. Tomorrow is do or die time on both.
This will be a short post. I can barely hold my eyes open after 13 hours of crazy busy work. And lots of rescuing baby chickens, sorting goats, and random animal shenanigans. A friend told me my animals just didn't want me to miss my boys too much. Yes, I'm sure that's it. They're being jerks out of kindness.
Adam hasn't stopped giggling for five minutes over a goofy meme he saw on Facebook. I think the boys being gone is getting to him, too.
Some people speculated the boys being gone would be a vacation. Others said I'd be super busy without my farm hands around. I'm realizing it's just a different kind of busy. Things have shifted. But I miss taking breaks to go to the river with them or just sit in the shade to watch the animals and talk. They force me to stop and smell the proverbial roses. I guess I'll have to learn how to do that on my own when they're all grown up. In the meantime, I'll appreciate the moments we have.
Meme from the Thieves Like Us Facebook page. I think Adam is still giggling over there. Or should I say chuckling? I guess that sounds manlier.
Yesterday, I wondered if my week without my boys would make me the most productive person on the planet or if it would drive me completely and totally insane. I am now beginning to consider a third, previously unforeseen option: I just might become a complete and total sloth. Maybe I'm one of those people who only has two speeds, and without my boys keeping me on my toes, I will go from Mach 3 to zero.
My animals saw to it I didn't do anything crazy like sleep in without the kiddos around. This morning we found out the diner where Adam and I met and he later proposed is closing. (The same diner in Throwaway, btw) This filled the morning with a flurry of messages between us and friends we haven't seen in eons. My mother-in-law took the boys to breakfast there so they could see the place before it was gone. It's 1 pm as I type this and I'm fighting the urge for the billionth time to not message my oldest to see how breakfast went. All I've gotten so far was that they remembered Adam as "the Elvis guy." I worked there for years, but apparently one has to look like Elvis to be remembered. And the fact that I can't go one day without talking to my kids has me a little concerned for myself. Have I become that mom?
So far today, I've updated the Vox Dei website to include an author page, written a post for the Vox Dei blog, gone through my entire to-do list for Vox Dei, rescued a baby chicken, contemplated pulling together a TJ's reunion (still haven't ruled that one out), gone grocery shopping and caught up on the local gossip whether I wanted it or not. (You can't go to the coffee shop and not get local gossip.) And I've caught up on submissions for Vox Dei. (So hey, if you've contemplated submitting to us, now would be a great time.)
But all I really want to do is curl up with a good book or rom com movie. I thought real hard about tackling the boys' rooms as threatened, but have just about convinced myself it would be better parenting to leave them for the boys to clean. It has nothing to do with the current overwhelming desire to nap.
My three boys are blessed with two sets of grandparents who love them immeasurably. Not many kiddos have that anymore. I can't begin to say how much my boys bring joy into my world, how much I love them, or how exhausting raising them can be.
This week, they're spending a whole week with their grandparents in St. Louis. One whole week. No boys. No pinging off the wall. No bickering. No belly laughing until your sides hurt. No goodnight hugs. One whole week.
I've decided that by the end of the week, I'll either rule the world or completely lose my mind. Usually, I chronicle my life with my crazy kiddos in "Conversations with Boys." This week, it'll be "Conversations Without Boys."
Say a prayer for me.
The silence is what gets me. I can hear the fan whirring behind me. There are these weird words bumping around my brain... I'm pretty sure they're thoughts, but I haven't heard those in so long I've forgotten what they sound like.
By lunchtime, I'd tended the animals, eaten breakfast AND lunch, caught up on my to-do list for Vox Dei, and actually remembered my noon meeting. Like, even before the calendar told me about it.
After my meetings, I decided to deep clean the bathroom, top to bottom. Literally top to bottom. The ceiling and floors have never looked so good, although there is a very irritated spider now.
I've discovered that the laundry hamper actually has a bottom and the sink isn't a myth. It does exist under the never-ending stream of dishes.
At first I told myself Holly puppy was looking thoughtful at my stream of conversation. Now I'm beginning to think that's a look more questioning my sanity. Charlie-Bear is looking pretty long suffering. Maybe I'll go talk to the goats for a while.
If you noticed a new look to the website, that's courtesy of the quiet house, too. And not having to compete with the boys for internet bandwidth. (Yes, Blake, that does mean you.)
Tomorrow, I'll finish the horse shed and deep clean their rooms. I'm not sure who should be more afraid about that one: me or them.
As of now, it's a tossup as to what will win this week: world conquering or insanity.
Dylan: Do you ever plot out or plan what you’d do if you were a criminal?
Dylan: Oh. Okay. Me either, then.
Blake: Are you guys making fun of me? You’re my parents. You’re supposed to be representing me.
Chris: Don’t you mean resenting you?
Me: I am seriously going to pop a vein soon if you boys don’t get this living room picked up.
Dylan: Can people really pop veins? I bet that hurts.
Chris: (super serious) Yeah, it happened to a friend of mine. He got sent to the nurse.
Dylan: (trying not to laugh) Really? It happened to a friend of yours? Wouldn’t he be a little young for that?
Chris: No; he was in fourth grade.
Chris: How do grandmas learn to cook so well?
Me: Don’t you mean ‘how do moms learn to cook so well?’
Chris: I already know how moms cook so well - that’s why I asked about grandmas.
Blake: Backpedal, backpedal, backpedal
Rolling hills that had been vibrant green just weeks ago were now muted in tone, as if they were taking a deep breath before bursting into the song of fall.