Tuesday, August 14, 2018

August Thus Far

Back to school brings mixed feelings in my house. I love fall. The scents, the leaves, football, jeans...but the running around is usually a shock to the system the first few weeks. With four kids and all of them in athletics to say our schedule is full is an understatement. 

A big understatement. 

To ward off any major breakdowns I try and get as much done as possible in the weeks leading up to school starting again. Haircuts, clothes, shoes and of course supplies. Since my flooded basement I have really taken to purging unnecessary garbage I've saved over the years.  This would include just about everything I consider throwing out and then I think "I might need it some day..." 

Fast forward 18 years and I used 25% of it, yet it all lived in my basement. Not any more. Bedrooms have also been cleansed and it is a very freeing experience. I guess rainy days are good for something. 

This weather is making me feel as if summer was stolen, without any hopes of it returning this year. Afternoons by the pool have been replaced with wrangling wet dogs and wiping up muddy footprints. Some of my kids have been stuck indoors for the start of their fall seasons and my oldest is outside catching footballs in the rain. 

Not a fun August so far.

I'm looking forward to sunshine and even the smell of pumpkin spice. Give me anything other than rain. 

Hope the sun is shining where you are...say hello to it for me. 



Monday, August 6, 2018

Rain, Basements and Blessings

It's been quite the month.  Two weeks ago I had an umbilical hernia repaired (that's another post) and last week my basement started to flood from all the rain.

We aren't in a flood zone, and we have a sump pump for ground water.  The trouble starts when the ground is completely saturated because you've gotten 16 inches of rain in two weeks. Unfortunately, our pump failed after working overtime and 12 of those sixteen inches ended up in our basement.

We visited a college (that is also another post) and came home to dirty socks floating across the bottom of our basement steps. Since then it has been a whirlwind of pumping water out only to have it seep back in within hours. When we just about dry out the basement and another inch appears just to drive me nuts.

It's a short drive. 

This morning, after a weekend of chaos and mess, I'm thankful we live in a small town.  Flooding is common around here, and the community comes together to help each other.  Without even asking for a hand, we had several.  Friends that came Friday night and stayed until after midnight, friends that arrived Saturday regardless that they had plans. A neighbor I have never met brought us a pump and offered supplies early Saturday after seeing our hoses pumping water into the front yard.

My teenage son even had friends show up to do the heavy lifting. Those boys were a lifesaver.

With all the assistance, and my mom coming Sunday to organize the mess that was left, I'm feeling like this was a blessing.  It is a reminder to lend a hand, to slow down and enjoy every day.  And I'll finally have a clean basement.  I've dreamed about it for years, but could never really part with a lot of the junk I had down there.  

When it's dripping wet it's much easier to toss into the trailer your friends loaned you for trash removal.

I'm overwhelmed with gratitude. 

Happy Monday.  Remember to be the kind of friend you want to have...it isn't always convenient but it makes all the difference in the world. 



Monday, July 30, 2018

Elephant Party

My daughter loves elephants.  She loves all animals, but elephants currently have her heart. Truthfully I never thought much of elephants unless there was one in the room.  Those are hard to ignore.

Did you know that elephants symbolize strength, honor and loyalty?  One of the things I've learned about elephants as I searched for party ideas.

My youngest daughter has elephant stuffed animals, toys, pictures, paintings and clothes.  For her 9th birthday she wanted an elephant party.  I went on Pinterest and found all kinds of great ideas for her party that require me to carve elephants out of watermelons.

That was all I needed to stop looking on Pinterest. I did see an idea for Nutter Butters as party snacks and that one I put to good use. 

Instead of carving watermelons into elephant heads, I went to the dollar store for baby shower products. Elephants are pretty popular for new babies.  I found an elephant garland and table decor, went to Claire's for small elephants for the girls to "adopt" and asked Sam's Club to make me an elephant cake.

My older daughter, bless her heart, made us a "pin the tail on the elephant" game.

The party, with snacks and swimming, was a hit. I now have one more year with a child in "single digits." 

I can't even. I may need another puppy.

Cheers to elephants, nine year old and Mondays.