I woke up dreading yesterday.
I am a homebody, and yesterday was an out-and-about day. It was a day when I had to consult maps and drive somewhere new. It was a day when kids' activities kept us from having a family dinner. It was a day when I had to be well-organized and cheerful and adventurous, even though I wanted to be relaxed and quiet.
But it was a fun day.
Together the kids and I met some friends at the zoo. We all learned all over again that we don't enjoy field trip type outings (we had 17 kids between us). It is far more fun to go to the zoo just as a family, but it was good to see our friends. It was good to talk, to visit, to put our own desires aside for a short time to meet the needs of others.
But next time we'll just invite them over to our house. :)
Later the kids and I packed up and headed out to E14's soccer game. There are 2 weeks left in the season, and we are all ready for it to be over. Instead of being invigorated and inspired by soccer, we feel overwhelmed and tired.
I really thought this team (a homeschool team for which all of my daughters could eventually play) might be a good fit for us. The practice field is close to our home; the coach is experienced and patient; the girls can play from grade 7 through to grade 12; all of my girls could, in various combinations, play together. It sounds perfect!
But I'm not sure.
E14 is ready to be done and says she probably won't go back. M12 and some of the younger girls really want to play. I won't force E14--the cost is too high, both financially and emotionally, to push it, but if M12 wants to give it a try, I won't stop her.
It's funny how I was dreading the game that turned out to be so much fun last night. Our team was severely beaten--and fairly, too. The other team out-played them. But once we were out in the beautiful spring evening it was fun! It was fun to watch and cheer. It was fun to play at grass-wars with I2, H4 and A6. It was fun to watch kids run and shout and be outside soaking in the sunshine and breeze instead of inside doing dishes and the same-old-same old.
(Though I missed my husband and our family prayer time.)
We make family meals a priority, as we do family scripture study and prayer. One missed night--or even 5 missed nights during soccer season--isn't the end of the world. In fact, I wonder if it nourishes our love for our regular routine.
We ate a picnic dinner of toasted cheese-bread, apple slices, carrot sticks, and oatmeal cookies.
We came home for baths and showers.
We treated our sunburns with fresh aloe vera (note to self--buy sunscreen!).
We gathered for (almost) family prayer and read together from The Book of Mormon.
We read stories.
We were together.
We were together all day--whether in the house or out.
We enjoyed one another.
That day I was dreading?
It was a good day.