Thursday was a very difficult day for more than one reasone, but once it was done, life looked a lot better.
At this point, I am finished with my professional growth plan and proof. I have ordered and picked up (and paid for) 1100 buns. My 8th grader has gotten his hair cut, and it actually looks pretty good. I have ordered cakes and trophies and dropped off papers at the credit union. I have made progress on my paperwork at school...I think it will be finished by Monday when we check-out.
I have been to my husband's ex-wife's house three times in the last 3 days. Because you see, when the kids grow up...there are grandkids...and it happens faster than you know it. One of my regrets there is that we didn't get along better when my stepson was growing up. Things are good now, but it wasn't always that way.
Changing tacks a little bit...there is a "mission camp" for teenagers sponsored by our diocese. They only go about 20 miles away, and they help the poor in the nearby communities. My niece went last year and loved it. I have been encouraging my boys for a while, as well as talking to some other parents, because, "I'll go if someone else I know is going." One mom has seemed more interested than the others, and after she had done some research, she called me early this week. Perhaps her son and some of his friends would be interested, she said, but the $250 price tag was a little much. Did I think that our parish consider helping with the cost. Well, you know, "Ask and you shall receive, knock and it shall be opened..." I told her I would email our kind pastor and inquire. I was thrilled to get the email a few days later (the bright spot in my Thursday) that he said he would "more than happy to pick up the entire tab" for these boys. Just one more reason (as if I needed more) why we are fortunate to have him.
We had a good visit with the grandkids today (or at least 4 of the 6). I had been stressing about that on Thursday, too, when my sister-in-law was acting like she might not be available today...what was I going to do with six kids + my own two? How was I even going to transport them all? One of my morning Mass friends, says, "You better talk to 'the Big Mama'." Had to laugh because I've never heard the Blessed Mother referred to as 'the Big Mama'". And of course, it all worked out!
We visited a small farm that one of my sister-in-law's friend owns. Her husband gave us a short tour and the kids got to see some goats up close. After we were done, we sampled some delicious goat cheese with apricots and cranberries (I think). In this picture, my 15 year old (the uncle) is the tallest, with grandchildren #5, 2, 3, and 1.
Afterwards, we had lunch at Chick-Fil-A and then divided and conquered. My boys had to serve at 4:00 Mass, so the oldest came with me. The two girls went with my sister-in-law to 4:00 Mass at another parish. And the 4-year old boy (who doesn't have a reputation of behaving very well in Mass), went home with Paw-Paw. Although both parents are Catholic, they have stepped away from the Church, and the kids are being raised in what my kids refer to as "the fun church", since my daughter-in-law goes on about how much fun the kids have at church. I thought it was a great touch of irony that the 11 year old whispered to me as we were sitting in the pre-Mass hear-a-pin-drop silence, "My church is boring; your church is fun!" Whatever. Maybe it's all the up and down that we do during the Mass that counts for "fun"?
It is late, and I must be up early tomorrow for the Great Sausage Po-Boy sale!