October 16, 2015

a new school year: L and E

What are we up to these days? Let's see.

I am not teaching preschool this year. I am giving myself some time to focus on my family, and on myself a little. I am missing my preschool class (my heart will always be with teaching and school), but I have found a perfect way to stay involved. I organized a co-op of 6 kids/moms. We each take turns teaching the class for 3 days out of a week. I am super involved with it--setting up the schedule and curriculum plan and going in to assess the kids. I am also volunteering in each of my boys classrooms every other week. It's been a good way to get my teaching/school fix. This year, it feels right that I do this.

Like I said, I am also trying to focus on myself a little more. I am exercising again and taking time each day to read and study. I try to exercise in the mornings--sometimes classes at the gym, with friends, or a walk and yoga at home. I love my afternoon study time. I am reading the biography of Ezra Taft Benson and motherhood books and articles. And just reading novels, too. I am writing more in my journal and collecting my thoughts, ideas, and quotes into other notebooks. I am obsessed with notebooks and pens. Sometimes during my afternoon time, I nap. It is glorious. I do not feel guilty at all for taking this time each day. I need it. I am grateful to get it.

I also want to focus on my family this year. I want to show them that I love them and I am there for them. I want to serve them more in my daily life. For me, I felt like I should do a couple of things that I haven't done in awhile. Specifically, pack lunches and wash and fold clothes.

So I am now packing school and work lunches each day. It has been years since I packed lunches. The boys started packing their own at least two years ago (we had a great routine in which they would each be responsible for both lunches two days a week and then they would buy lunch once a week). And Eric has always taken care of his lunch (which meant he went out and spent $10 a meal each day). Eric made mention of it multiple times that if I would pack his lunch he would bring it. So when school started, I embraced lunch making. I pack Eric's the night before and put it in the fridge. I am sure to put in a corny love note (which is my favorite part of his lunch making). I make lunches for all three boys in the morning.

Since the boys were 8 years old, they have been in charge of their own laundry. Sometimes they washed and folded their own. Sometimes they have been responsible for a load of all the kids clothes to wash and fold. It has changed a few times depending on circumstances. I took over this task this year. I have two laundry days and get everyone's laundry done during that time. I wash and fold and then the kids put their own clothes away.

I do both of these tasks for me. Yes, it's for my family. But I just felt like I wanted my love for them to increase. And I have found love does that when you serve in small, simple ways with the right attitude. I love thinking about Eric and all he does for our family as I put each piece of his lunch into his lunch box and write his silly love note. I want him to know how much he means to me. I find myself thinking about each of my kids, their personalities and their activities, as I fold their shirts and socks. I think doing these things helps me to slow down, appreciate, and savor these people in my life. Do I think I will always fold their clothes and make lunches? No. Probably not. But it is my gift to them and to myself this year.

My calling at church is still the Stake Assistant Camp Director. We have already begun the planning for next summer's girls camp. It will be a huge encampment combined with 7 other stakes. I am also on the RS Meeting Committee.

Eric is such a stud. He works sooo hard for our family. He is still at microsoft, which means a long commute and a busy schedule. We wish we had more time with him each day, but he is a rockstar provider.

He is adored by his children. Everyone gets so excited when daddy comes home. Like, so excited. He is the children's favorite. He plays, wrestles, and reads to the kids. He has been the main driver to and from soccer practices and has been to every soccer game. He comes to as many dr appointments and school events as possible. He makes everything fun around the house. He works hard.

Eric's calling at church right now is Cubmaster. Scouting is still not his favorite thing in the world, but he works hard to fulfill the role.

He is super sweet and romantic and, occasionally, brings me flowers for no reason at all. Eric takes me on dates each week. Once we get the kids to bed, we get a couple of hours together to watch shows (currently White Collar with some scene skipping), read, and talk.

He makes the best bbq sauce and his smoking and grilling skills knock our socks off. He makes waffles every Saturday morning for breakfast.

I think Eric and I make a pretty good team. We are far from having marriage and parenting all figured out, but we try hard. I love that we can bounce ideas off of each other and discuss our kids and strategies, systems, and traditions for our family. We have different personalities, but common goals that keep us going in the right direction. We pray together every night. We celebrate 12 years of marriage in a few weeks!

Andrea said...

Role model couple!! :)

Laura said...

Ha--don't think too highly of us. If I were to write about all the things we struggle with and fail at, my post would be five times as long.;)