Ordinary and Real Stuff

Ordinary and Real Stuff

As I sit in my favorite chair tonight, I’m watching my little boy roam around in a red cape, bearing a sword. He was superman earlier today. I’m not sure who he is now. My youngest daughter is sitting on the couch across from me plucking at her mandolin. She’s had a rough evening. First she got drug across our pasture by a llama. (The llama was scared and ran, and took her along.)She scraped her knees and hit her head. She has Tourette’s Syndrome and her tics are acting up. Consequently, she is having trouble keeping up with the family band, so she’s practicing on her own. The rest of the family is practicing music in the basement. They are starting to trickle upstairs. My twelve-year-old son is already looking forward to breakfast and is promising us all pancakes. This will, of course, require him to get up early, so nobody is holding their breath.

I spent the bulk of the evening outside trying to make friends with the llamas. The youngest one is starting to trust me and will walk right up to me, but she runs off as soon as I try to pet her. Her mama is much more shy and keeps her distance. We have to shear them and give them shots in a few weeks, so I hope that I can catch them, or at least be able to coral them, before then. They are very beautiful animals and they seem gentle. We have sheep, the llamas and chickens now, and I am pretty happy with this setup. No more food hogging, pushy, stubborn, gate breaking cows for me!

Our school year is not over, but it sure feels like it should be. Our homeschool co-op finished up a couple of weeks ago. We went out with a Shakesperean sized bang. We did Hamlet, and I think it was pretty awesome. A  friend who was a theater major said it was the best version of Hamlet that she had ever seen. Yay! But, now we are back to the real world, trying to get through our curriculum.

Last week I doubled the size of my garden and got everything planted. However, the chickens escaped and I suspect that they ate my green bean and squash seeds. I have been planting lots of flowers. It’s my new creative outlet.

In the midst of schooling and gardening, I am determined to get my house top to bottom clean before the end of May. I never got to spring clean last year and tried to get to it all summer. I never really did.  This year I have started at my back door and I am slowly working my way through the entire house. My new favorite cleaning solution is hot water with the tiniest bit of bleach and Dawn dish detergent. I’m cleaning walls, baseboards, floors and furniture with it. I love it! I’m finding some projects that I need to put on my to do list this summer, like sanding cabinets and repainting our upstairs bathroom. I thought I was going to have to do more painting because some of the walls and woodwork were looking kind of dingy, but my cleaning solution did wonders for that problem. The ceiling over my fireplace is covered in soot and I am contemplating my cleaning solution for it. If that’s a bad idea, somebody please talk me out of it.

I want to go into summer with things in order because I want to spend  lots of time with my family. My oldest daughter is going into her senior year of high school, and right behind her is her brother who will be a sophomore. They are growing up and will be adults before we know it. I want to savor these last moments of us all being together.

I am also looking forward to spending a lot of time with friends. There are going to be weddings to attend, parties, and weekly cookouts at a local park. There will be lots of opportunities to work together at a camp that our church is purchasing. It’s going to be a great summer of “doing life’ together.

At church we have been studying the old testament. We have just gotten to the book of Exodus. As we study the different people in the Bible, I am struck by the way that God uses ordinary people who deal with hard things and come from pretty messy situations. Hearing these stories and seeing them in this light has been encouraging to me. They make me simply want to be “real”.

I think that Hollywood and social media have convinced some of us that “real” is  the image we see on the screen. Sometimes life is messy and hard. Sometimes we have to face the consequences  of our choices.  Sometimes tragedy strikes. I think of Joseph, the favorite son of his father, was thrown in a pit and sold as a slave in Egypt.  He rose above those difficult circumstances and became a trusted man in Egypt. Then he was falsely accused by his master’s wife and thrown in jail. He was also delivered from that horrible situation, and became a ruler in Egypt. Then, he was faced with having to forgive his brothers for what they did to him. God blessed him and used him, but the struggle in his life incredible. Moses wandered in the wilderness for forty years while God worked in his life to bring him to the end of himself. He finally came to the place where God could use him to lead his people to the promised land.  I find these stories encouraging. It’s exhausting to try to be like that perfect  (and most likely contrived)image on social media, but I sure can relate to Sarah, who had trust issues and messed things up by taking matters into her own hands.

Anyway, that is the kind of stuff that I have been thinking about recently.

I realize that this post is kind of random. It’s simply a picture of my  ordinary life and my thoughts. I wish I could wrap it all up neat and tidy for you, but time is up. Goodnight.


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