Friday, September 1, 2023

7 Quick Takes about the First Day in Hades, Unconventional Personal Shoppers, and a New Sheriff in Town

It's 7 Quick Takes... September?? I'm aware of missing the last 3 weeks of August but something had to drop out and this ended up being it. Hopefully I can be more regular now that school has begun.


Speaking of school, it's been a little rough. The first day in particular was a disaster.

Our anxious child threw up twice from nerves and didn't make it to the bathroom either time. When you're cleaning vomit off the walls before 7AM, it's a pretty good sign that the day ahead may not go the way you hoped it would.

Then the 11-year-old accidentally took the 9-year-old's bag of school supplies instead of her own, and the 9-year-old almost got on the 7-year-old's bus and then missed his own.

That afternoon, I learned that none of my kids are actually registered for the bus (oops) and now I'm dropping them all off and picking them all up until some undetermined time in the future when the bus company starts answering my calls and fixes whatever it is that I did wrong.

But it's fine. The kids all had a good first day once they actually got to school, even our anxious child (who thankfully didn't repeat the pyrotechnics the next morning). 


Our 19-year-old also went back to school. She worked hard, the summer she was here seemed to fly by, and as of early this morning she was on a plane bound for her second year of college. 

Mostly, the summer felt pretty scattered and I mostly remember spending a lot of time trying to coordinate rides to get everyone where they needed to go. I didn't realize until the very end of this summer that what we should have done was try to coordinate the three teenager's work schedules more so they weren't always working opposite shifts of each other, maybe choosing one day a week for them to all ask for the day off so we could have enjoyed some family movie nights or day trips.

I guess I'm still learning how to do this. It seems sort of unfair that hardly any of the mothering skills you learn when your child is under 12 translate to big kid world very well! 


I've also been very busy the past few weeks with Young Women, in the organization of teenage girls at church that I lead. 

In August our group organized an overnight at the lake house of a member of our congregation, which was a ton of fun and seriously beautiful. It wasn't really vacation, because I was in charge and supposed to be the responsible adult, but it still kind of felt like it.

Just a few short days after returning from the lake house it was time for Young Women Camp, which is a 3-day camping experience for the teenage girls from several different area congregations. I technically wasn't in charge and didn't have to go, but I volunteered because I love the girls so much I wanted to spend time with them. 

I saw this dumpster parked on the outskirts of camp. It doesn't have anything to do with anything, really, but I love a good dumpster pun (and here were two!)

And I did get to know the girls better, in a way that my 17-year-old would sarcastically describe as "trauma bonding." The group I was with somehow got their things soaked by the rain and we had to relocate at midnight to sleep in the dining hall in borrowed sleeping bags like refugees. They were good sports about it, though, and they really did enjoy being together and having fun.


The other day I needed to buy some feminine products at the store and decided to bring my 15-year-old son after picking him up from cross-country practice.

Maybe a teenage boy isn't the first shopping companion that would come to mind, but I think it's important for him not to be an unhelpful bozo about this stuff for the sake of a future girlfriend/wife. I showed him where to find it in the store, the difference between types of products, and how to buy them.

Now instead of being like "duhhhh... I eMbArAsSeD to go in girly aisle!" when someone asks him someday to go pick up some tampons, he'll be able to say "Sure, what brand and absorbency do you want?" and I think that's way better.


In an effort to lessen my stress at home, Phillip took over food production at home, including grocery shopping, menu planning, and making dinner. He did it exactly the way a scientist character in a sitcom would, creating an Excel spreadsheet for the contents of our pantry customized with dropdown menus to easily mark what we have and what we need.

Although I was skeptical about at his method at first, it's been a week and I feel amazing.

Not only am I way less stressed not having to try to make a casserole while driving 5 kids all over town to their after-school activities, it's also just really vindicating to see someone else struggle with the same things I always assumed were my personal failings. When we run out of a key ingredient for dinner or end up eating at 8 PM, I feel like yelling "Thank you! You're single-handedly proving that it's not me, this is just a legitimately hard job!"


My 17-year-old had her wisdom teeth removed, and it went way smoother than when her older sister had hers extracted a few years ago. The procedure was quick, she seemed pretty with it post-anesthesia, and she never really complained about feeling pain. 

If it weren't for the fact that she was eating nothing but applesauce and protein shakes for several days, I would've forgotten she'd had her wisdom teeth out at all.


My 7-year-old was recently doing some kind of craft that involved cutting paper, and couldn't find the scissors. 

"Do you know where they are?" he asked me.

Sorry, but I haven't known where the scissors are since my oldest child got tall enough to reach the counter where we keep them. I told him he was out of luck.

With a resigned sigh, he observed, "It's, like, special when we have the scissors." 


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Anonymous said...

We didn't have scissors for maybe a decade, then husband came home with an inexpensive set of maybe 8 pair of scissors. We now keep a set of scissors in every top drawer in the kitchen. If you don't see them in one, you'll find it in the next! We purchase another 2 pair a year as maintenance and only cheap ones.

Sandra said...

Good to see you back!