Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

Floors & Pumpkins & Cookies October 22, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 8:00 am

Since yesterday’s post was all about the birthday boy, I thought I would fill you in what else is happening in our lives. There is never a dull moment around here.

Last week was our first MOPS & MOMSnext craft meeting. We made floral headbands that turned out beautifully. The moms really loved the craft and the time to mingle as they worked on their projects. I often sit and talk during our craft meetings. Having quiet conversations around the table with no agenda other than connection is totally my thing. October is a full month for MOPS & MOMSnext with our first craft meeting, but also our first guest speakers joining us next Monday. We have two fundraisers this month. Plus we launched Operation Christmas Child at our last meeting as well. And we have an outing to the pumpkin patch. So yeah, just a few things going on there…

Tuesdays are quickly becoming a favorite day for me! I love volunteering at Owen’s school. The kids now get excited to see me enter the classroom. It’s been great to build relationships with the kids as well as Owen’s teacher. This is such a purposeful ministry for me. I get to help with reading which is something I’m passionate about, but I’m also being a light to these kids through my kindness. I certainly don’t preach at them, but I want them to know that I am safe person.  This last week Owen’s teacher had the parents send in supplies to make pizzas for snack and I got to make one alongside the kids. Talk about tasty and rewarding!

Thursday was a big day. We had the flooring installers come back out after the last big fix didn’t work with our flooring situation. The installers are stumped as to why the product keeps breaking. It’s most likely a failure in the product itself. They started to rule out other issues – like the structure of the house. Turns out our house is well built and that is not the problem. Praise the Lord. Tensions are high because ultimately the best fix is to replace the entire floor. The installers are done making small fixes that don’t matter. Jeremy and I are of the opinion that we won’t settle for broken floors. All I can say was that Thursday was tense as we discussed what was going on with our floor.

I had to leave for a field trip while the flooring guys were at the house. I had confirmed the time of pumpkin patch outing right when the request went out. I wanted to make sure that we were leaving the school at 10:30am. The teacher confirmed the time and I agreed to come along. I was excited to ride the bus with Owen and participate in the first field trip of the year. When I arrived at the school, I saw a bus was being loaded. It was 10:20am and I knew multiple classes were going on the field trip, so I quickly went up to Owen’s classroom to see if he was there. The classroom was empty so I practically ran through the halls back to the parking lot only to discover that the bus had left without me. I was upset. Very upset. I had promised my kid that I would ride the bus with him as a part of the experience. I drove myself to the pumpkin patch and I got there right when the bus did. As soon as Owen was off the bus he was all upset about how I didn’t ride with him. I told him I was sorry to disappoint him, but the bus left without me. It turns out that there was substitute teacher that day. While she had a list of the chaperones that would be riding, apparently she didn’t check to make sure that all chaperones were accounted before leaving.

The pumpkin patch situation is very hard on my personality type. I like to be punctual – in fact, being early is on time for me. I arrived 10 minutes before the departure time that I had confirmed with the teacher. I’m not sure if the other parents received different information, but I was shocked to find that despite being early, I was left behind. I don’t like messing up, even though it wasn’t my fault. I also don’t like disappointing my kid. Owen asked if I could ride the bus back with him, which of course, I couldn’t since my van was now at the pumpkin patch. He asked if he could ride back to the school with me which the substitute informed us he could not. I understand and respect school policy. I felt bad that Owen was looking for anyway possible to get extra time with me.

Despite the bus drama, I had a good, but wet time at the pumpkin patch. Again it was fun to hang out with Owen’s class. And I got to meet a few other parents who tagged along. To salvage Thursday, we had a Burger King play date with friends after school. The friend we met up with a had a birthday party at the same time as Owen & Graham’s family party. This play date was a special way to see this friend and give him his gift since we couldn’t make it to the party. The friend also gave the boys party favors since they couldn’t attend the party.

Thursday evening we had a ministry dinner for pastors that we declined attending. The flooring was a big unknown and we didn’t know what condition our home would be in that evening. Also we keep the boys up late on Wednesday nights because of church. This dinner would mean another late night by the time we picked up kids and got them home to bed. We couldn’t justify two late nights in a row. Before school a late Thursday night meant we could be lazy on Friday morning, but that is no longer our schedule. I struggle with wanting to be at all things possible, but now we have to protect our evenings from being too late. Owen has even stopped coming to MOPS & MOMSnext with me on Mondays so he can go to bed on time.

To keep the pumpkin theme of the day going on Thursday, we carved our pumpkins that we got at the corn maze. Owen’s white pumpkin turned out to a bit tricky. The white shell was harder to cut and the inside of the pumpkin was so stinky. Owen was supposed to have a train on his pumpkin, but it cracked during carving and Jeremy transformed it into an alien. Thank goodness Owen loved the alien and handled the change of plans well. Graham’s warty pumpkin was perfect for using one of the big warty bumps to make a nose on the pumpkin. He came up with that plan all on his own. I thought it was very creative!

On Tuesday and Wednesday, I made a bunch of butter cookies and frosted them for my church girls. They weren’t professional by any means, but very tasty. Then when I met up with my forever friend, Maggie, on Friday she gave me her very lovely cookies as a treat. She has been working on her home baking business and has learned so much about decorating adorable cookies. We ate one of her cookies before heading to lunch. Then after lunch we ordered cookies for dessert at the restaurant.

It as fun to meet up with Maggie at the mall. I felt a bit silly, but I told her that all I’ve done lately is church, school and errands. I wanted to see a store other than Costco. I had a great time walking around The Container Store especially. I had two items that I’ve wanted after reading The Home Edit this summer. I scored awesome tote hangers for my closet and can shelving for my pantry! Despite the weather and the traffic, time with Maggie is always worth the drive. I am thankful for her friendship. And her cookies. Who wouldn’t love a week full of cookies?!

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Making pizza with Owen’s class. 

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Despite the change in the weather, I love my daily walks to and from the bus stop. Something about fresh air and exercise! 

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A few of my cookies that I made for church.

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Pumpkin Patch Field Trip

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Pumpkin Patch Field Trip

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Pumpkin Patch Field Trip

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Pumpkin Patch Field Trip – this umbrella might be the best $10 I’ve spent on Amazon. It’s getting lots of use. 

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Pumpkin carving

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Pumpkin carving

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Pumpkin carving

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Pumpkin carving

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Pumpkin carving

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A special day with Maggie May!

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A great way to end any meal!

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Pumpkin cookies from Sweet Maggie May.

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I love these tote hooks from The Container Store. There unique shape works great for holding bags and looks classier than using regular hangers. I’m in love! 

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I was cautious and only bought one of these can shelves, but I am now sold and must get more! I love being able to keep track of all my cans in a glance!

 

Happy 4th Birthday, Graham! October 21, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 10:49 am

This weekend Graham officially turned four! He has been waiting for quite a while for this momentous occasion. With a birthday party at the beginning of the month and Owen’s birthday right after that, Graham has been somewhat patiently waiting for it to be his “real” birthday. On Saturday, he told me numerous times that it was his real birthday. He also explained to me that he is faster now that he is four.

I don’t plan on doing this again, but the only way it worked to get our immediate families present for a family party was to have the party on Graham’s “real” birthday. The morning was about Graham and then he happily did errands with us to  get ready for the birthday party later that day. The birthday party was for both Owen and Graham. I was happy to see that Graham shared his birthday so well with his brother. He also really enjoyed seeing all his family on his birthday. I felt a bit bad because Owen got a special outing for his birthday and Graham got a birthday party he had to share with his brother. Last year, however, Graham got an overnight trip for his birthday and Owen had preschool and MOPS. I guess in the grand scheme of life, things even out.

What to say about Graham? Or should I say Grambo (our nickname for him). Preschool has taught him that his name is Graham. Up until recently he would tell you his name is Grambo. Let’s talk about preschool first. Graham has finally given up the waterworks at preschool drop off! Praise the Lord! He made at least one good friend that he mentions often. Graham remains my stubborn, strong willed child. He is learning so much right now – partially from school and partially from copying his kindergartener brother. Owen is often correcting Graham and I have to remind Owen that Graham is in preschool, not kindergarten. But in true little brother fashion, Graham is doing his best to keep up with Owen. Graham is my homebody, my introvert. In a lot of ways he is like me. With him being like me, you’d think I’d know how to parent him with more insight, but he often leaves me wondering what to do next. He is my kid that I use Love & Logic with the most.

This morning Graham and I had a rare morning to go on a play date. Graham usually doesn’t like going on play dates without Owen. Instead my friend got sick (which is sad), so Graham and I are enjoying a rare home day instead (which is happy). I’ve been tidying up after a busy weekend at our house. Graham has been putting around playing with all the new toys. He is now crafting beside me at the dining room table. He is the best kid to hang around the house with. Even when he is near me, he is entertaining himself. While I was cleaning the bathrooms this morning, he came down and sat in the bathroom and just talked to me while I cleaned. I hope we’ll always be friends like this. But maybe our roles will be reversed. Someday he’ll be cleaning the bathrooms and I’ll come in and talk with him while he works, just because I want to be near him.

It’s crazy having a four year and a six year old. The years have gone fast. I know that time doesn’t slow down. I am bracing myself for the wild ride still yet ahead. It’s been such a joy to watch my little boys turn into bigger kids. And while Graham still remains my short and small child, I know that he is growing in many ways even though he is not skyrocketing in height. He has changed so much in the last year, let alone the last month. I’m excited to see that being four has to offer him!

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The official birthday picture! Graham loves this shirt and has now worn it three days in a row. Apparently Graham is a firm believer in birthday month. 

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Graham through the years! Newborn – One – Two – Three

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Nothing like a candle on breakfast!

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Make a wish!

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Present time before the party

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He is always so expressive

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Goofball

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Instead of donuts this time, we had a traditional birthday cake covered in all kinds of a colorful frosting. 

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Birthday party take two! This time with our immediate families.

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Make another wish!

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We are very into Toy Story these days! 

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Hanging with the cousins! 

 

A Light Bulb Moment October 15, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 2:53 pm

DSC_0009I had a light bulb moment while vacuuming last week. I do a lot of great thinking while I vacuum. Fun fact, while I vacuum I often write really fantastic, deep and moving blog posts in my head. Then by the time I sit down to write a blog post, all the amazing thoughts have vanished because I didn’t write them down the second I was thinking them. Does this happen to anyone else? All my best thoughts happen while I vacuum.

Last week’s vacuuming session came with an “AHA” moment that brought so much clarity to my life. I had to write about it here. I was contemplating why September had been so challenging. I was truly surprised by the amount of energy that September zapped from me. I wanted to get to the bottom of it.

Some factors are easy to pinpoint. The schedule was different week to week. Jeremy was out hunting throughout the month. My parents traveled a good portion of the month. My support team wasn’t always there. Those things are obvious but it felt like there was more to it than that.

DSC_0003I was adjusting to a new schedule. I kept focusing on the new – I must be struggling with the new routine, new schedule, new commitments. I must not be handling the new well. But really that wasn’t it. The new schedule and routine were found, but I was still exhausted by the changes. The new stuff wasn’t the culprit.

And then the light bulb went off. I was struggling with the old stuff. I was mourning all my old ways of doing things. I was mourning my old routine. I was sad that Family Fridays were no more. I was sad that play dates don’t fit in our calendar anymore. I was sad that we couldn’t skip school at a moments notice or be flexible and sleep in on a week day after a late night. I had to let go of things that I deeply valued during this transition.

Fridays were my favorite day of the week. Usually I got to sleep in on either Friday or Saturday so the pressure wasn’t so intense to have a restful morning. Fridays were always fun family adventures. It could be running errands together, getting a meal out or hanging around the house. Fridays always centered around us as a family. Most of the world was at work or school, so we would have quieter outings. We wouldn’t have to share the stores or the activities with many people. Now we’re relegated to weekends just like everyone else. Fridays have always been special and now they are different.

If you’ve been on my blog for any amount of time you know that we do play dates like professionals. Our calendar was constantly filled up with friends. We would have at least two play dates a week. I would chat with my mom friends while my kiddos played with their friends. These times were special and meaningful. Now play dates don’t fit on our calendar very easily. Some relationships will probably fizzle as a result of this change to our schedule.  I know that Owen is meeting new friends at school and he is not lacking in the friendship department, but I will miss those preschool friends and their moms. I haven’t given up complete hope of keeping in touch, but I know it’s going to be harder now.

DSC_0027I could go on about the flexibility of the preschool years. The quiet that came from days at home with no agenda. Now I have plans for almost every day of the week. I don’t want life to be a rat race. I want breathing room. I want space to be quiet. And I am the only one who can make that happen for me. I need to schedule more quiet, more rest. More time at home. Being busy isn’t a badge of honor. I’m not winning gold stars for adulting at a high capacity. I started January 2019 thinking about the word balance. I can see how even now in October, I need to focus in on that topic. Balance might be an illusion, but I keep striving for it (maybe at my own detriment).

Adjusting to new things is hard. It takes time. It takes energy. Letting go of old things that were loved and valued is also hard. This combination laid me out flat last month. I’ve been picking up the pieces in October. There is a sense of routine and familiarity growing with each week. It won’t always be this way or feel this way. I had a hard time adapting from being just a couple to having a kid in the house. Seven years of married life had me set in my ways. Now I’ve had kids for a few years, I don’t miss or mourn those couple days as much as I did right after the big change happened. Some day down the road I’ll look back at this season and say – yeah, it was a hard transition, but I’ve been doing it for so long now that it feels normal. I will have walked further down the road and while I can look back and remember, it won’t be so fresh in my mind or my heart.

DSC_0018It was just a crazy light bulb moment to think that my greatest struggle wasn’t accepting the new, but letting go of the old. It’s okay for me to be sad. It’s okay to mourn the loss of valuable things. I am glad that I had space to process my feelings and get to the root of the issue. I also have hope for the future. The past was good, but I don’t believe that my best days are behind me. I will move forward. I keep looking ahead. I believe there is so much goodness to be discovered and enjoyed in this new season. I will look for it with eyes wide open. I will keep going knowing the distance on this road I travel will help ease the pain of letting go.

 

Family Pictures & October Adventures October 13, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 8:29 pm

As promised, our family pictures are featured in the photos of this post. My sister-in-law’s sister took them for us. This is her third time taking pictures for us over the years. I was so glad she was available because 1) we know her and 2) she’s very reasonable when it comes to cost. I don’t “enjoy” taking pictures and the weather never fails to stress me out. I’m always glad that I go to the hassle every year. It’s great to have pictures for the Christmas card. And it’s wonderful to display pictures of my kiddos growing year by year. Owen also had school pictures this year. Once Graham has his school pictures this spring, I’ll create a space on my walls to display school pictures alongside family pictures. For school pictures, Owen told me they took his picture twice. I figured that meant that photo number one was no good and a second one was necessary. With that in mind, I had low expectations of school pictures. And I was sort of right. It’s not a terrible picture, but Owen has some crazy eyes going on that look like the flash photography stunned him. I could do re-takes, but I really have no hope for a better outcome, so we will accept the crazy eyes. Oh and one last thing about family pictures – we took them at our house which is super special to me and Owen got pictures of his chickens, which was super important to him!

This week’s projects for me included Candy Corn Blondies. I found a recipe on Pinterest a few years ago as a way to use up extra candy corn in the house. Now it’s a fall tradition for me to make this treat. This batch turned out especially good despite the fact that the blondies broke in half while I was taking them out of the pan. We’ll call that a rustic cut. No biggie. My other great accomplishment this week was finishing Emma. I’m now one book away from finishing my Jane Austen mission. I’ve saved Pride and Prejudice for last. I have a feeling it will be the best for a grand finale. I am pausing though shortly to read Sarah Bessy’s new book, Miracles and Other Reasonable Things. It went on sale this week and I couldn’t pass up the deal. I have been deeply moved by Sarah’s writing over the years so of course, I couldn’t wait until my Austen marathon was finished. Sarah comes first!

Thursday I got our family a pizza shaped like a pumpkin from Papa Murphy’s and we had a family game night. Owen and Graham had a sleepover with Nana & Papa on Friday, so Jeremy and I could attend a conference on Friday and Saturday. I wanted to make sure that we had a good amount of family time on Thursday before being separated for part of the weekend. The conference was for Love & Logic which I really appreciate the strategies and the heart of the message. The conference gave us all useful tools that we could put into practice right away. Also it was great for Jeremy to join me because I’ve been into Love and Logic for a few years now, but now I feel like we are on the same page as a couple. It’s a wonderful feeling! While Jeremy and I were busy, Owen and Graham were living their best lives. They got to ride bikes with family, pet puppies, play games, go to the movies. It was a great weekend for them.

We wrapped up our weekend with a trip to the corn maze and our first pumpkin patch of the season. One of the hardest things about the conference was the weather – it was too nice to be inside and my soul was longing to be outdoors doing autumn activities. Today was our chance to make good on the weather and the fall fun. The corn maze we visit has two mazes. Each boy gets to guide us through a maze. Both kids went in a small circle this year and tried to go back out the entrance like we did the maze in record time. It was so hilarious and i guess if the goal is get “out” quickly, they succeeded! We don’t usually go to this pumpkin patch, but we are short one of our “usual” patches this year, so I thought why not. The boys picked unique pumpkins – a white one for Owen and a bumpy for Graham. After our outing, we went shopping at Costco and got dinner there. Owen acted like it was the best experience of his life getting to eat at Costco. I loved it! It’s the little things in life!

And onward to start another week! I hope you enjoy the family pictures below.

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Kindergarten School Pictures September 2019

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Candy Corn Blondies have become an annual tradition! So good!

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This is what happens while we wait for the school bus on a very cold day.

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Family Game night

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Family Bike Ride

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Puppy Love

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Celebrating Papa a few days early!

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Corn Maze

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Pumpkin Patch

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Owen wanted a white one and Graham wanted a bumpy one!

 

Happy 6th Birthday, Owen! October 9, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 10:35 am

Yesterday was Owen 6th birthday! He had a thoroughly great day from start to finish. Since his birthday was on a Tuesday, it was a volunteering day for me. I arrived at his classroom with Costco chocolate muffins to share. I was able to watch Owen be the special helper in the classroom and hear his class sing him happy birthday. I’m thankful that I got to be in the school to watch him being celebrated. It made my heart happy to know that his day was special even if I couldn’t be there the whole time celebrating with him.

We met Owen at the bus stop ready for an adventure after school. As we were loading up, Owen asked me to pull a surprise out of his backpack. His teacher had given him a stuffed animal for his birthday. She also sent him home with the last Costco muffin. He was truly a blessed boy. And then we took off for our adventure – an Amtrak ride from Centralia to Lacey.

We have been talking about taking the boys on an Amtrak ride for a long time. In fact a few years ago, we booked a trip, but it was cancelled by Amtrak. Owen’s birthday seemed like a good time to try again. We arrived at the train station and waited no so patiently for our train to arrive. The actual ride was quick – only about 20 minutes. The scenery with all the fall colors was lovely. My mom dropped us off at the Centralia station and then she met up with us at the Olympia-Lacey station.

From the station we took off for Owen’s dinner of choice – Chipotle. He ate his signature chips, cheese and chocolate milk. And then he went over to Safeway to pick his dessert of choice – powered sugar donut holes. Since Jeremy wouldn’t let me light a candle inside the Safeway cafe area, we went back to my mom’s vehicle and quickly lit a small candle on a donut hole and sang happy birthday. I am very much a stickler for making sure a candle is blown out on an actual birthday. It might be important to only me, but I want to make sure no birthday celebration opportunity is missed. The night wrapped up with opening a few small presents from Jeremy and I at home.

Yesterday the boys left for school in a flurry. I was tidying up the house after the chaos and I notice that Lamby was left on Owen’s bed. Owen has taken Lamby to school every single day. This last month Owen was having a hard time with me leaving his room at night and I told him to talk to Lamby. I’ve suggested this often over the years. For the first time, Owen told me Lamby wasn’t real. And then I saw Lamby left in his room and I thought – this is it. Apparently when you’re six you’ve out grown special stuff animals. I put Lamby on the bed with a sad sigh. When Owen loaded up after school for our adventure, he mentioned that Lamby didn’t make it to school. He takes him out during quiet time every day and the loss of Lamby was deeply felt. I explained that a lot of things got left out at home yesterday in the whirlwind that was their leaving process. I told him we would make sure that Lamby made it to school the next day. Inwardly I was smiling that my six year old hadn’t out grown Lamby overnight.

There are so many things I could say about Mr. Owen. He is cautious and adventurous in all the right ways. He isn’t fearless, but he is brave! He constantly surprises me with how he adapts and rolls with life. He has adjusted to kindergarten like a champ. Watching him do well is actually encouraging me to let go of stress and worry. He’s got this and he’s got God. I can’t be with Owen watching over him 24/7, but God can. I know the Holy Spirit speaks to his heart. He has shown me over and over again that he can make good choices and he stands up for what he believes. Owen is a helper. He wants to be included. It might be working in the yard, cleaning the bathrooms or taking care of his beloved chickens – Owen wants to be participate. I sincerely love the kid he is becoming with each year. The unfolding of his story is precious to me. I am blessed to have a front row seat. Watching him grow is such an adventure and a joy!

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Happy Birthday, Owen 

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The class special helper

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Reading with the birthday boy 

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At the Centralia station. Graham was very concerned about the potential train noise. He spent the first 15 minutes at the station covering his ears even though there were no trains at that time.

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Waiting at the station

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About to board our train

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The train ride

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We made it to Lacey

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Dinner at Chipotle

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Donut holes for dessert

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Owen through the years!

 

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?