Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Stay-at-home bomb...

For the last week I have been at my sister's house, reveling in her world and sniffing her new baby's head far too often. It was wonderful, as times with her adorable family always are. I'll write more about it...tomorrow.

But for all intents and purposes, today felt like the first day of summer break. And it was hard.

Confessional time:

All school year, I look forward to the summer. I hope and wish and pray and pin everything on the 2 months that I get to be a stay-at-home mom. It's the time of year I get to live the life I want most to be living. I get to be the "me" I picture myself to be.

But when it rolls around? Turns out that sometimes I'm not so good at it. I lose my patience, don't get enough done, or run out of time or energy to get on the floor and play. The chores multiply along with the messes, and all the projects I hope to do evaporate for lack of planning or motivation.

Today I felt like a failure. I told myself that I was going to get our luggage put away, and do some art with the boys. I got 1 suitcase put away. No art. Instead there was a trip to the vet, a load of laundry, and I did clean out the fridge before groceries were delivered - but no play. We went to the backyard, and instead of throwing the ball around, I became overwhelmed by the jungle of weeds that appeared in the last two weeks. And then I started to cry.

Because if there's anything I want to be good at, this is IT. No other job I will ever do will matter as much. And today I wasn't good. Not even mediocre. I was plain bad at it.


Tomorrow I will be better. I'm going to sit down with a new art book, pick a project, and get out the materials tonight. I am going to choose 2 chores that MUST be done, and everything else will wait for another day (I'm thinking the linen closet reorganization and the run to the store for curtains for the boys' room and another organizer for the dress-up clothes). And I will read (for myself) for at least 30 minutes.

Most of all, I will give myself a hug. After all, it's only my second day on the job, and there's bound to be a learning curve.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

What a wonderful year!

Over a year ago, I spent endless hours pouring over web pages and doing visits to preschools all over the east side of Portland. I drafted an excel spreadsheet and countless pro-con lists for each opportunity. But when I visited Harmony, something clicked. It felt like a home where children and families and teachers were partners in the journey, and where Max would begin to love school.

From his first day in the fall, he (and we) fell in love with his school. He made wonderful friends quickly, and had teachers who gave their whole hearts to the children in their care. Likewise, Dan and I were welcomed into the community, and the hellos in the hall lead to play dates and birthday parties. Last weekend we joined the school for the annual camping trip to Oxbow. While small talk and mingling have never been our strength, it was easier than we would have imagined. The kids ran wild in the woods, splashed in the river, and laughed with their friends. Max even survived sleeping in the tent - a real surprise to him! The weather was perfect, and I truly can't wait to go again next year.

Here are some shots from the weekend:
Luke at the river

Max crossing the Sandy River

Our friends Gail and Ben enjoying the shade

Dan just chillin'

Some of the artwork from school (scenes depicting the song "What a Wonderful World")

Luke and I at the river

Kiddos enjoying throwing rocks into the river - they could have stayed all day!

It really was great. This week was Max's last week of school, so we also took a couple of shots of this momentous occasion. First - a flashback (his first, nervous morning):

And Friday, filled with confidence and looking so much older:

And with Jude,the amazing director, who is leaving us this year to start a new adventure:

Finally, the fabulous Katie, the guide in his classroom, and an overall amazing woman:
We have just felt so fortunate with this experience. Katie understands Max and appreciates his passion, he has friends who have broadened his world, and with Jude at the helm, it has been the perfect ship for us to be aboard. We are excited to continue the journey next year, when Luke will join the school and Max will continue there for his Kindergarten year.

I just love it when things turn out the way you always hoped they would!

Saturday, June 19, 2010


It's time to celebrate! That's right, summer's here! I'm on vacation!

Well, ok, not entirely on vacation - after all, this is the time of year that I transition to being a stay-at-home mama. And with my two, I have a feeling that I won't just be sitting around resting all day.

But I couldn't be more excited. We have some great things planned: a trip to Canada to meet my nephew, girls' weekend in southern California, a week at my parents' cabin, a trip to the beach, and a wedding. I've gathered art supplies and ideas for projects with the boys. Library books abound, and I'm embarking on a "writing journey" of sorts. There's sewing to be done, and crafts to fiddle with. Our first peas are getting close, and the garden is just waiting for warm weather to take off. I am hoping for time with our playgroup and outings at the zoo. Picnics will be plenty.

It's going to be good. I am so lucky to have this time with the boys and without a firm schedule. I am sure there will be days when I beg Dan to let me go to work because I can't handle one more argument or name-calling. But overall?

I can't wait.

*this picture is totally unrelated - I just couldn't resist sharing it.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Just a little something...

A typical crazy day during the time between coming home from work and eating dinner: