Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

Hello October! October 7, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 8:47 am

October started with a bang! October 1st was my first day of volunteering in Owen’s classroom. I got to read books with each of the kids. I love reading so this was right up my alley. It was also helpful to now have faces for all the names that I am hearing about everyday. While I was at the school my plans for right afterwards were cancelled so I offered to stay longer. I stayed with Owen through lunch and saw him off to recess. It brings me so much joy to see Owen doing well in his new school. He is liked by the other kids. Someone is always calling his name inviting him to join them. He is also doing well with the schoolwork. Overall, I am very glad at how the beginning Owen’s school career has gone. Here’s hoping it’s smooth sailing like this through graduation… in 2032.

Part of the reason I didn’t rush home on Tuesday was my floors were being torn up and being replaced with new boards. It’s an epic drama that has been unfolding. Many small fixes have been met with no luck. This time half of our living space was torn up. Unfortunately within 20 minutes of the installers leaving, we found a broken spot. And the new boards aren’t as glossy as the old boards. You can totally see a difference. I am OCD. I can’t un-see the difference. I’m sure our building company and the flooring company are not thrilled that we keep calling, but we have an expectation of non-broken floors. I’m not entirely sure what the next step will be. We won’t leave things how they are. It’s so inconvenient to get to the house ready for them to “fix” it. Everything needs to be cleared from the counters. All the rugs and furniture need to be covered. This time our kitchen appliances needed to move. And the amount of dust that settles on everything is no easy chore to clean up. So… that was Tuesday after volunteering. Lots of cleaning.

Tuesday evening I would have stayed home and let dark thoughts about my flooring brew, but I had to lead a ministry gathering. I got together with a few women ministers in our area to connect for coffee. It was a small group, but that is okay. I am glad I got to provide the opportunity. The ladies that did show up connected well and seemed to appreciate the chance to talk. The coffee chat came at the end of a long day. I’m grateful that God gave me the little boost of energy I needed to keep moving.  Usually when it’s hard to get out the door and I just want to stay home, I end up being glad I put the effort in to going out. This was one of those nights.

The rest of the week was spent connecting with friends. I had a friend over to my house on Wednesday and I visited a friend with a new baby on Thursday. It’s a strange dynamic for me to not have my Graham tag along for these times. I find that I am able to give my friends better focus. I’m also able to be a helper with their little ones. It’s a new role. I miss my kiddos while they are at school, but I am enjoying the new found freedom a few mornings a week. Slowly this new schedule is starting to take root and feel normal.

On Friday Owen got a pajama party at school. He also got to claim a free personal pan pizza from Pizza Hut for reaching his reading goal. Graham got to run errands with Jeremy and I as we prepped for one of two birthday parties this month. Usually I do the boys’ birthday parties back to back in one weekend, but this year we’ve space them out. Saturday was our friends party and in a few weeks we’ll have a family party.

Graham and Owen always have to pick a theme they agree on for their birthday party. Graham wanted a donut party, but Owen didn’t. They ended up agreeing on a “Dino Dig” theme, but we turned it into “Dinos & Donuts” for Graham. I enjoyed making the theme come to life. Anytime I have three dozen donuts on display at my house, it’s a good day! Jeremy wore an inflatable dinosaur costume to greet our guests. We hosted a dinosaur hunt in the backyard with kids wearing dino masks while looking for toy dinosaurs in the grass. I’m fairly positive Jeremy will mowing over tiny dinosaurs for years. Our boys had such a good time with their friends. The weather allowed for plenty of outside play. It was about as great as a 4 & 6 year olds birthday party could be.

Sunday, Jeremy and I did what they call the “circuit.” We spoke for a few minutes at all three gatherings – including our downtown Centralia campus – about an upcoming parenting conference. I don’t love getting up in front of the whole congregation, but it’s a good skill to have so I try to be bold. Getting out of the classroom and in front of the crowd is a great spotlight on children’s ministry. After church we got ready to host our growth group. We lead a parenting group. It was wonderful to have some new members join us. The evening went well, but after all the energy spent on partying and speaking at church, I was ready to call it a wrap on the weekend.

And now it’s the aftermath of all the company. Today is for tidying the house. It’s also for prepping for a MOPS & MOMSnext team meeting this evening. And maybe I can sneak a little reading in. Monday is my day with Mr. Graham. I’m sure he’ll be happy to play with new birthday toys while I putter around the house. I have no plans to change out of my pajamas until the absolute last minute. Comfy clothes are a must after a busy weekend! Time to recover a bit. While being productive. Is that possible?

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Volunteering in Owen’s classroom

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Mr. Personality

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Pajama party at school for Owen and claiming his free personal pizza for dinner! 

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Three dozen donuts sitting on your counter will make your house smell amazing. I know this from experience now.

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The birthday boys in their dinosaur party shirts. Graham’s was too perfect for the party theme!

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Jeremy got some extra use out of his Halloween costume by greeting the guests on his new pet dinosaur.

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Jeremy is so good at throwing egg hunts for the community, he took those skills and turned them into a dinosaur hunt for the party.

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Chocolate with sprinkles for Graham. Sugar donut for Owen.

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Make a wish! 

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Enjoying a Sunday morning out of the classroom and getting some extra time together even if it’s on stage!

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PS – I’ll share our family pictures in my next post! 

 

Almost There September 29, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 4:49 pm

In August, I kept thinking that I would get to September and fall into my new routine. I assumed it would happen quickly. I would be settled in September. What I really meant was just wait for October. I’ll be settled in October because the whole month of September was needed to adjust to a new routine. Live and learn. New routines are not made overnight. They are made over days and weeks and sometimes months.

I’ve already admitted that September was way more challenging than I imagined. I’m amazed at how quickly the month went, but I’m okay to see it go. While I hope that October will bring that settled feeling I’m craving, I also know that there is no such thing as a normal month. October is birthday month for my boys as well as many family members. October is the kick off to growth group at our house and the beginning of classroom volunteering. October also holds part of our flooring being torn up and replaced (this Tuesday, pray for me). I’ll host my first coffee chat as area connector for our Network of Women Ministers (also this Tuesday). I’ll have my first sit down to help plan my first wedding as wedding coordinator at the church. All good things, but all new to October. I won’t be surprised if I get to November and repeat what I said about September and October.

Here is what I’m learning – things take time. Normal is an elusive dream. I might wish for settled feelings to kick in, but in reality it might takes months. And it’s okay. It’s okay for the adjustment period to be slow. It’s okay to take my time finding our new normal. And I’m okay with figuring out what works and what doesn’t work. I can make changes. So often I feel locked into commitments or things that I should do. We talked about this at MOPS & MOMSnext last week. Should is a guilt word. We need to be empowered to do what is right for our families – with our own unique dynamics and limitations. There is no blanket set of rules for each family. This gives me freedom.

Family schedules are a lot like math. I have the power to add and subtract. I know that subtracting isn’t as fun as adding, but eventually if you add, add, add the fun turns to exhaustion. I feel like I’m tittering on the edge of having added too much. I loved the simplicity that the baby days brought me. I had to say no to many things because I couldn’t do them with a child in tow or I was too limited in my energy to take on more. As my kids have grown, my capacity has grown. Just because I can do more, doesn’t mean I should. I don’t want my life to feel like a rat race. I plan to live with my current commitments and see how it all shakes out this fall. I need to remind myself that I am at the max and that adding more would be unwise. I’m also writing this here as a accountability. I don’t need to add more. I don’t need to feel bad for choosing less – if it’s for the health of my family.

I’ve never been good at math. But I’m learning. And now that I’m helping my son with math homework with “new” math techniques, I’ve also seen how there is more than one way to learn a skill. It might take some trial and error, but I’m dedicated to finding balance. It’s a daily effort, but well worth it. So let’s see what October has in store. Will it hold that elusive feeling of being settled? Or will that always be a month off? Even if I don’t find that feeling, I can tell you that I will intentionally have a fantastic month. I will celebrate birthdays, I will eat all things pumpkin, I will do fun fall activities with loved ones. October is my favorite month of the year. I plan to make it a good one!!

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Picking up this kid from the bus is one of my favorite times of the day. It’s good exercise walking down our long driveway.  We talk about his day as we walk home and then immediately get a snack because he is starving! Usually that means eating the rest of his lunch he decided to not eat at school. 

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Plenty of fresh eggs and lots of bread in the house means french toast is a must. I almost never have a big breakfast, but bring on breakfast for dinner and we’ll have the works! 

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New routine has me up early and I need to spend less time getting ready, so I chopped off my hair again.  I read that cutting your hair short is one way to simplify life and I happen to agree.  

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Anyone else feel like the only way to clean up after Play Doh is to burn the house down? Oh man, Play Doh everywhere. Good thing we don’t pull out this messy activity out on a regular basis! 

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Flowers from Jeremy’s garden. So beautiful! 

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Pizza night with MOPS & MOMSnext

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We did family pictures on Saturday. The weather had us super nervous and it started to rain 10 minutes after we finished. I can’t wait to see the results and share them with you. How cute are these handsome brothers? 

 

Cold Season is Here September 23, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 1:58 pm

It took no time for cold season to make its grand appearance at our house. Owen mentioned the kid sitting next to him stayed home sick one day. Then he mentioned a kid he was partnered with for a project was home sick the next day. It seemed like only a matter of time. The excitement of the new school schedule has worn off and exhaustion has settled in. Graham and I both caught the cold from Owen. Jeremy has avoided it thus far. His being out hunting while the contagious germs were being spread might be the reason why he has avoid it. I just finished disinfecting all the surfaces of my home that I can and washing the blankets that I’ve noticed my children have been using as an alternative to blowing their nose with a tissue.

Despite illness, life has been full. I had two wonderful meetings with mentors this last week. We took the boys to get haircuts and dinner out on Friday. I went to see Downton Abbey with my mom. We had dinner with Nana & Papa one day and then dinner with friends the next day. I kept texting our friends giving the cold updates thinking that they would probably want to cancel with us. Turns out their kids have colds too so we just had a wild night of runny noses and took a chance on sharing germs.

Through this whole month of transition, I have felt so loved and supported by my people. I got multiple texts from friends on the first day of school asking me how I was doing. I’ve had friends and family checking in on me. I’ve had many dear people listen to my ramblings and empathizing with my crazy kinder mom emotions. If I’ve leaned on our shoulder this month for strength and support I want to say a huge thank you! Life is truly better together.

Next week will be the first week that I am in Owen’s classroom. I’ve been talking for years now about the opportunity to volunteer for the school. I want to be a light beyond the walls of my church and my home. I am excited to interact with new kids and Owen’s teacher. I have no clue what to expect, but it’s kindergarten work so it can’t be too over my head, right? Honestly, we’ve been doing common core math sheets with Owen every day and sometimes I have to pause and process how they word things. It will be interesting to see how much things have changed since my own childhood memories of kindergarten.

Well, here we are, plowing through cold season. It’s officially the first day of autumn which is always a special day for me. Fall is my favorite season. If I didn’t have my own cold, I would probably be reveling in it a bit more. I have MOPS & MOPSnext tonight so I’m trying to pace myself so I can make it through the evening. It will be fun to celebrate the arrival of fall with so many ladies tonight. Since it’s only our second meeting, I’m not sure what to expect, but I’m hopeful for a great evening of mom time.

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New umbrellas for rainy walks to and from the bus stop. 

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Hot chocolate, a baked good and conversations with dear friends are a winning combination. 

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Looking for the bus

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Grandpa & Grandma came home from vacation Friday so the whole crew met Owen at the bus stop. 

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Matching shirts! 

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Saturday at the movies – Downton Abbey

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Cold season

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Current reading project: All of Jane Austen’s novels. Almost half way there. Working on Mansfield Park now. 

 

Figuring It Out As I Go September 17, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 2:44 pm

Figuring it out as I go would be a good way to describe my September. Each week has presented different factors that haven’t allowed me to settle into a new routine yet. Day by day I’m figuring it out as I go knowing that tomorrow will be completely different. Not a lot of a stability. However unsteady I have felt this month, Jesus has been greater than my emotions, anxiety or stumbles. He has truly been my solid ground.

One big piece of the puzzle fell into place this week. Owen has started riding the bus home from school. There are many reasons why this was a good decision for our family. As long as Owen has a positive experience on the bus then this will become our new normal. I’m looking forward to having this part of my day come together in a consistent way.

Not only am I helping my kids adapt to a new schedule, I am adapting my schedule to work around them. I’m finding my new flow. Mondays will be dedicated to MOPS & MOMSnext. Tuesdays, I will volunteer in Owen’s classroom. The cool thing about Tuesdays this year is that Owen & I both have Tuesday birthdays, so we’ll get to have some extra time together on those special days. On Wednesdays I have a weekly phone date with a friend and then I teach 4th-6th grade girls at church in the evening. I have a great group of new 4th graders. I am excited for the year ahead with them. Thursdays will be coffee connection days or appointment days or errands days. It might also be a home day depending on the busy weekend ahead. I like that Thursday is a flex day. Friday will most likely be errands with Jeremy and Graham. Saturday will be a family day. Sunday is church in the mornings and growth groups in the evening. It’s amazing how each day of the week has filled in with a purpose.  After the whirlwind month of September is over, I plan on using nap time to dive back into working on my book. My goal for the end of the year is to see this project move forward.

Having my kids away from me for part of the day has heightened my sense of intentionality when I am present with them. I’m making meaningful conversation with them – asking about their day, what they are learning, how they are feeling. I try stay close and offer plenty of hugs, kisses and snuggles. Owen just started having homework packets this week and I enjoy sitting beside him as he does his homework. Reading is so important to me so reading the books that the school sends home daily is a joy for me and a great connection point for Owen and I. There have been many sad feelings for me as I miss my children through this transition, but I’m also finding new ways to draw close to them and support them through their new endeavors. It’s a different season of parenting. I’m walking into it with my eyes wide open, not wanting to miss a beat. I want to use the time I have with them to the full. God is so good to me. He has drawn our family closer together through the transitions. Although it might be hard to give my kids some independence, I know that God is always with them.  They are never alone. He is watching over them when they are with me and when we are apart.

One big September project that I tackled this month was purging the playroom. I went through and tossed all the happy meal toys. I got rid of anything cheap, broken, the party favor type items. I also boxed up some toys that they boys have outgrown. I hide the box of toys for a few months to see if anything is noticed and missed. When nothing is said then I donate the toys. September is a good time to do this purge since the boys’ birthdays are right around the corner. Out with the old and in with the new. If we expect more to come into the house then we need to make space by sending some out. This process is always extremely gratifying. So far no items have been noted as missing. I should be in the clear since it’s been a week now since the purge happened.

As you can see, I’m just tying to roll with it – whatever the day hands me. Adjusting to change is not easy for my personality type. Graham and I are struggling the most with the new schedule. I’m not three though so I can’t vent my emotions and fears through tantrums. I won’t lie – I’ve shed my fair share of tears through this process. My prayer life has deepened as I’ve called out to God to calm my heart, remove my anxiety and keep my boys safe. I apologize for sounding like a broken record . I’m just over here waiting for things to feel normal again. And I do realize that “normal” probably isn’t the best word. I’m waiting to feel settled and in routine. I don’t know when that will happen so until then I’m just figuring it out as I go.

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Jeremy took Owen along hunting for part of Saturday. I love sending my boys out into nature with their dad!

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Owen brought a bike light home from hunting. Here I am snuggling with my boys after nap time and the bike light is featured because they think it’s awesome. 

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Sunday evening we did a game and movie night with boys. Jeremy was home from hunting so we wanted to make the most of our family evening together. 

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Monday was staff retreat, picture day for Owen and the first time Owen rode the bus. Owen’s coat got forgotten at home. Plans were altered to go it it, we were late, no breakfast was had so Jeremy and I ate kid snacks in the van on the way to staff retreat as our breakfast. It was a zany day, but we kept smiling through it all. 

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Our staff retreat tagalong. Graham packed his own toy bag to bring. Included were dinosaurs, trains, magnets, play food, Hot Wheels cars and his snuggly blanket. 

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Here comes the bus! 

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Our bus rider made it home! 

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First day of homework packets. 

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Graham wanted to do homework at the same time as Owen. And don’t mind the crazy hair…

 

One week down. How many more to go? September 14, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 5:06 pm

We survived our first week of school. The school schedule is no joke. The years that I have dreaded filled with back and forth to school, sitting in pick up lines and daily having to be out of the house have arrived. I knew the boys were going to be tired after a week of the new routine, but I was in no way prepared for how exhausted I was going to be as well.

Owen is impressing me every day with his reading books that he brings home and the fact that he learned how to dribble a ball on the playground. He tells me recess is his favorite time of the day. He already has friends. Each day I get to hear that he used glue or paint or special markers. He is enjoying school a lot and done surprising well with full days of activity.

Graham on the other hand is not pleased with school. He was crying on Thursday night just knowing he had to go back on Tuesday. Oh my. He is feeling his feelings quite strongly right now. Everything is bit off kilter right now and Graham’s behavior is a sure sign that we haven’t found our new normal yet. We are all building new skills and muscles through this transition. Only time will help settle us.

I’ve kept this weekend purposefully quiet again. Jeremy has been gone hunting. I’ve been home with the boys allowing them to play and rest. We need home base right now. Part of this is my own need. Home centers me. After being all over the place this summer, I will say that I miss adventures. I miss fun family days. Elk season ends on Thursday and I’m looking forward to having my husband back. Maybe by the time Jeremy is out of the woods, we’ll have built our energy back up so we can actually have a family adventure. I sure hope so. I feel like I’m missing all my boys right now – Owen at elementary school, Graham at preschool, Jeremy out hunting.

Nothing about our school pick up and drop off plan has happened as we expected. Instead of dropping Owen off in his classroom, Jeremy has been dropping him off on the playground. Jeremy would be late to work and Graham would be late to preschool if Owen was walked in everyday. Owen is supervised on the playground and has friends to play with. It’s not a hardship on him. It’s just different then we expected. The buses have consistently beat us home from school everyday so we have turned in the paperwork to have Owen ride the bus home. Part of my great frustration with our new routine is that the bus depot hasn’t confirmed when Owen can start riding the bus. We keep waiting for a call that hasn’t happened. Even when Jeremy called them yesterday to check on our status, they couldn’t give us an answer. I’m holding my breath trying to adapt to a schedule that is about to change soon. Once we work out the kinks and get Owen to the bus home, I’ll hopefully be able to settle. School pick-up has definitely not worked for us.

On a positive note, we kicked off MOPS & MOMSnext on Monday and almost every seat in the room was full. The room was bursting with energy. It was a very good night. I hope the momentum of our first meeting carries through this new year with lots of excitement and growth. I truly believe this could be the best year of MOPS & MOMSnext yet.

God is good. He has been my rock as I have felt unsteady this month. When life is tough, I turn to my faith as my foundation. I guess the bonus of a difficult transition is that I’ve been journaling daily and I’ve been very diligent in my quiet time with the Lord. God has been my source of strength during this exhausting new season. I know he is helping me to persevere and he is pushing me forward. Onward to better day! I believe it!

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Feeling a bit like a kid on the first day of school for our MOPS & MOMSnext kick off! 

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I love seeing a room full of ladies that are hoping to connect and build friendships!

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The sunset on Tuesday was simply beautiful and needed to be documented.

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When you are too tired to scoop cookies on a sheet, I recommend cookie bars. Way less work and just as tasty! 

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Graham has taken over collecting eggs while Owen is at school. 

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TGIF – happy to be home playing video games! 

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Saturday morning craft time

 

A Preschooler & A Kindergartener September 7, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 1:49 pm

The much anticipated first days of school have come and gone for my boys. True to life, the week turned out differently than expected. Graham came down with a 12 hour tummy bug and missed his first day of school. No chance at perfect attendance. I’m sure that isn’t a thing in preschool anyway!

Despite the being a day late, Graham started preschool on Wednesday with much success! Graham has shared all kinds of information about his time and his feelings about the school. I was nervous that my little homebody wasn’t going to be a good fit for preschool, but it seems he jumped in just fine. The only thing I can tell is a change in his behavior at home this week. There have been a lot of changes and strong emotions as we transition to a new fall schedule. Even though I’ve tried to remain calm around the boys, I’m sure they sensed the undercurrent of my emotions. Graham is a bit of a wild child at the moment. I have to remind myself that he is adapting to change, just like me. He is being pushed to try new things and learn new skills. It will take it’s toll until the muscles gain strength and a new normal settles upon our family. This same truth applies to all of us.

I’m grateful that Graham’s start to preschool has gone so well. I feel a smidge guilty that I haven’t been quite as worked up about him going to preschool as I have been for Owen starting kindergarten. Graham has the blessing of being the second child. Owen did two years of preschool at BKLC so I know what to expect in this environment. Graham goes to preschool in the same building as my husband and many other family members. He is in a safe environment where he is learning and trusted family members are just down the hall. It gives my heart peace. I wonder if someday I’ll have to apologize to Graham for never worrying about him quite as much as I worried about Owen. Even when it comes to elementary school, Graham will be a part of Owen’s drop off and pick up process for years before he is a student. By the time Graham is school aged, he’ll be familiar with the school and we’ll be familiar with the procedures.

Owen and I had a few mornings together while Graham was at preschool. The first day we ran an errand and got Starbucks. I wanted to do something special to fill up his love tank before heading into a new environment. On Thursday, we had our one-on-one conference with Owen’s teacher. She had us download an app where we could see pictures she posts of the class throughout the day. We talked about homework and expectations. I signed up to be her Tuesday morning volunteer starting in October. It was a good a sit down. I left with lots of paperwork to read and school picture forms to fill out and Scholastic book flyers to flip through. It’s a whole new world we’re entering.

Friday was the first official day of kindergarten. I’m so glad we only had one full day before the weekend. A full week of this routine is going to be intense! Owen went into his classroom just fine because his teacher helped whisk him in quickly before emotions could take over. I’m grateful that Jeremy was with me. He helped keep my emotions in check. Graham, Jeremy and I had breakfast out together after the drop off. I have a feeling that Fridays will become our run errands with Graham day. Saturdays will have to become more intentionally our family days. Throughout the school day, we saw pictures of Owen doing well and it put our minds at ease. The only downside of the first day was having to wake up Graham from his nap to get to school for pick up and then waiting for a half hour in the pick up line. Right now the buses are running behind, but in theory they should straighten out and with the routes changing this year, the bus now should drop off at our house at 3:32pm. This is about the same time that I was planning on being home with Owen anyway. I might just let the bus bring him home which would allow Graham a longer nap and save me the hassle of sitting in a sea of cars at the school. I will keep doing pick up until we see that the buses are running on schedule.

Overall, we survived the first week of school with flying colors. Jeremy is out in the woods today chasing down elk. The boys and I are having a home day. For me that means chores and finishing a required read for staff retreat. For the boys that means playing trains and watching cartoons. We’ve been living off of leftover pizza from our celebration meal last night. After sending my boys out in the world this week, it feels good to gather them close and have them home today. I just finished reading the 5 Love Languages of Children a week ago and it’s reminded me just how important each love language is in filling up a child’s love tank. I’ve tried to be generous with my words, hugs and kisses this last week in preparation for all the change. I’ve tried to do special things to show my love in tangible ways. Even though our days of being home together 24/7 have ended, I want my kids to know they have a foundation of love built with their parents. Even though they drive me nuts at times, I’m so thankful that God entrusted these boys to me. They are a blessing!

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Graham’s First Day of Preschool at BKLC.

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I love that Graham listed Owen as his best friend!

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Walking into school

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Playing Trains

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Heading to his teacher conference

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First Day of School at Lintott Elementary

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Dropping Owen off on the first day. His teacher told him Lamby could come too!

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I’ve been journaling and reading Scripture this week to calm my heart. This verse is now my lock screen on my phone. God gives strength and peace. Two things I need so much right now!

 

So Long Summer August 31, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 6:14 pm

The end of summer is right around the corner. It’s been an amazing summer. I’m sad that it’s almost over, but I’m also ready to dive into our new routine and find out what our family normal will be like with a preschooler and a kindergartner. Honestly, before having kids and through the baby years, summer just felt like any other time of the year. Now that my boys are older, summer holds a million possibilities for adventure and for fun. I feel like I get to be a kid again as I live through these summers with them. We’ve seen new places, we’ve had so many play dates and we’ve checked off a lot of summer bucket list items. We really maximized our time.

So how is our summer finishing up? We made it through four weeks of swimming lessons. Owen passed level one and will be on to level two next summer! We made it to Lattin’s Cider Mill to see the animals and get doughnuts. There were lots of birthday parties to attend and out of town family to visit with. The boys made it back to the Ape Caves to do the longer, more challenging cave.  The shorter cave was enough for me so a friend and I went to Hobby Lobby instead. I went to a volunteer orientation at Owen’s school and got to tour school. We had Owen’s back to school BBQ where we dropped off school supplies in his classroom and met his teacher briefly. I met with an editor friend to talk through the next steps for my book. I took my Wednesday night class to visit the youth gathering. It looks like most of my girls will be moving up. I’m always sad to say good bye to the girls in my class. However, I have a large group of 4th graders moving up, so it seems like while I’m saying good bye to quite a few girls, I will also be saying hello to quite a few. I helped with credentialing interviews for our network. Today we went on a local train ride as a end of summer special treat. We sure do know how to hop from thing to thing.

Yesterday was one of those blessed days where we stayed home all day with no where to go. It was heavenly. I stayed in my pajamas all day. I got the house decorated for fall. I made a blackberry pie. I finished a book. Such a good day! Jeremy and I both worked on resetting things for fall around the house. Jeremy took some time to organize the garage and well house. The boys bounced inside and outside depending on their mood. Days at home are my favorite. My absolute favorite. A day at home restores my soul in a way that few things can. I can ‘t replicate the rest I find in quiet, home days. Which is yet again a good reminder that these days need to happen more often. We’ll see how well I do this fall. We are heading into hunting season for Jeremy. I’ll be in chauffeur mode while Jeremy is out in the woods. Which means I’m leaning towards keeping my Saturdays quieter to make up for the fact that I will be out of the house daily for school pick up and drop offs.

Our whole world changes on Tuesday. Graham will head off to preschool for his first full week of Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday classes. Owen will have his parent, teacher, student conference on Thursday morning. The first full day of school for Owen will be Friday. Then MOPS & MOMSnext kicks off the following week while we have our first full week of both boys at school…  Say a prayer for us!

I will admit that I’m having all the kindergarten mom feelings. I don’t necessarily want more babies. I just wish my babies could be babies again. If there could be a cycle that goes from birth through preschool and then starts all over again. I’ve loved these years. Maybe not the sleepless nights, but I’ve loved the growth and curiosity of young childhood. I’ve loved being home with my littles. I will never regret the days we spent home in our pajamas watching PBS Kids and eating goldfish crackers. I never thought I would feel so strongly about this season, but truly, it’s been one of the biggest blessings and honors I’ve had in my life. I am optimistic that my kids will keep getting more amazing and I will come days look on the elementary years and say the same thing – they were the best. It’s normal to crave the familiar and not want to walk into the unknown. I keep reminding myself that it won’t be unknown for long. Soon I will be going with the flow like a pro. At least that is my hope. I’ll keep you posted!

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Catching up with my lovely friend, Mrs. O’Hara! This was our first time hanging out since her wedding. It was great to hear about her new season of life!

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So happy he passed level one at swimming lessons! On to level two next summer!

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Family Friday Fun at Lattin’s Cider Mill

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Mad scientist birthday party for a friend.

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These three boys! We call them The Triplets with their Oct/Nov/Dec birthdays. They hit the milestones together – welcome to kindergarten, Class of 2032.

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Enjoying Cousin Colton’s 3rd Birthday Party.

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Ape Cave Adventures!

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Ape Cave Adventures!

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Back to School Open House! We found Owen’s classroom, desk and cubby!

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The diversity of library day!

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Wrapping up the summer with a trip to the Chehalis Centralia Railroad!