A Week, Briefly (6/11/18)

Something happened overnight on Thursday night . . . I don't know what . . . all I do know is that I went to bed perfectly happily and woke up on Friday morning completely unable to cope.  Everyone and everything annoyed me, poked at my brain, left me antsy and angtsy.  I stood at the kitchen sink whispering our family calming mantra over and over again, opened my mouth to call everyone to breakfast, and then snapped.

Really snapped.

I hollered, scolded, berated, stomped, and generally made everyone in the house feel bad before I had enough sense to put myself on time out in my room for half an hour.

Sir Walter Scott and the teens handled breakfast and Morning Meeting while I was crying into my pillow.

I emerged still unready to cope, but at least calm enough to control my voice and words.

Today is Saturday, and I still feel tremulous and ugly in spirit.

Sir Walter Scott isn't home; the teens have a lot of outings; we're babysitting our usual two extra kids.  I'm going to have to tread very, very carefully.

Our week was full of social summery fun.

I woke the kids early for a surprise trip to a local blueberry farm.  Belle came with us, so 9 kids and I had a happy morning out in the country and then a sweet little breakfast picnic.

As the blueberries were $6/lb (I did not know this in advance), we only picked enough for breakfast that morning and for our oatmeal the next day.  No pies or jam for us. :)  But, oh, how tangy sweet those two breakfasts were!

The drive up and back was made quite pleasant by listening to The Wizard of Oz audiobook.

In spite of using bug repellent, some of us got chiggers anyway. :(  Poor Lola and Baymax have been miserable!

For the rest of the day, the teens watched the younger ones while Sir Walter Scott and I went on a date.

We had a swim date with friends.  They have a terrific community pool--with a waterslide!  I took one picture:

This is little friend L--.  He shares a birthday with Lola, but he and Baymax became "best fwends."

We spent 4 hours at the pool!  Quiet time balanced the rest of the day for the littles, but the teens headed out to a bonfire party with a passel of church friends.

And Belle spent 3 hours at the farm harvesting garlic scapes for this Saturday's farmer's market.  Hot, muggy day notwithstanding, she still came home with stars in her eyes.  She so loves the work.

Lucky us!  We had another swim invitation.  This time with a family with teens, so my teens came, too.

It was a shorter outing, but this is what we looked like afterward:

It was another very quiet afternoon/evening.

Mister Man took it upon himself to sort out all of the "felt friends."  This is perhaps halfway through the job.

Rose Red came home from the Bahamas!

She brought home postcards for all of the kids and a sense of adventure and fun that enlivened the house to the nth degree

We stayed home all day on purpose.

Biking, mulberry picking, chicken watching, tree climbing filled the morning.

Signing Time, quiet time, and water play in the front yard filled the afternoon.

Mister Man has been champion buddy to Lola and Baymax.  He helped them play with these alphabet sheets for nearly an hour!
 I'm sure I finished Little Princess's doll earlier in the week, but here's the finished product:

She loves it.

Little Princess and I also spent some time reading Little Women together on this day.

And the teens and I had a bit of a reckoning about having to actually finish their math for the year, so they settled into their books.

Super Star finished her French course (.5 credit only because it's technically an upper elementary level course).

Belle says she's at an impasse for Latin because we switched her from Visual Latin to Memoria Press level 2, and she didn't do the verb work in level 1.  The work she did in Visual Latin was noun-heavy, and so is the first half of Memoria Press level 2.  But now the focus is switching to verbs.  The included review lesson in level 2 has her panicked and worried.   I'm on the hunt for a used level 1 book set, so that she can learn what she missed and then go back to finish level 2.

(The ugly day.)

I took the kids to the park in the morning to meet up with friends from church.

The kids found a toad.

Little Princess took the picture.

I stayed restless all day, so when quiet time was over, I loaded the kids (minus Brother--he had a tantrum of his own that waaaaay rivaled mine, so he stayed home with Sir Walter Scott who was doing homework) into the van for a spur-of-the-moment trip to a new spray park.

For me, it was the best part of the day.

I felt knots loosen up in my chest, and I came home to an almost-ready dinner because Sir Walter Scott kindly put the potatoes and sausage into the oven while we were gone.

He is such a blessing!

That brings us to today:
*Dance classes (Pixie)
*Play rehearsal (Super Star--requires me to drop off and pick up)
*Father's Day video-making
*Hair cuts (boys)
*Hair care (Lola and Ladybug)
*Grocery shopping
*Work (Rose Red--requires me to drop off and pick up)
*Teens have another swim party with favorite homeschool friends

I read this during my personal devotional time this morning:

“What kind of a mother are you that you only love her when she does what you want her to do? That is selfish, self-centered, qualified love. It’s easy to love our children when they are good; but when they make mistakes, they need our love even more. We should love and care for them no matter what they do. It doesn’t mean we condone or approve of the errors, but we help, not condemn; love, not hate; forgive, not judge. We build them up rather than tear them down; we lead them, not desert them. We love when they are the most unlovable, and if you can’t or won’t do that, you are a poor mother.”

I feel that deserved chastisement to my very core.

I'm treading carefully.
Treading carefully.

(linking here)


  1. Don’t be so hard on yourself about your breakdown. It’s totally ok. You have to hold yourself together through so much every single day. To snap is human nature.

  2. I’m sorry you had a bad day, or two days. I recently wrote letters for youth conference. Somehow I was wise enough to write “devastation is temporary.” That one day, or two days, does not undo what you have already done. It does not define you. It is just one or two days. You will recover and the kids are all fine. Love you.

  3. Given all the issues you have to deal with I'm amazed that you mostly manage to keep it all together. I do believe it's what you do most of the time that sets the tone and I just look at the photos above and the tale of your week and smile. The kids all look to be happy (Brother's tantrum not withstanding) and having a great summer. That said I hope you find your equilibrium soon - I have periods where I feel angry and nasty and it's not enjoyable at all.

  4. Truly, I failed to explain why I feel the quoted chastisement is appropriate for me. I didn't realize as I wrote that it would seem that I was basing it on my Friday morning breakdown because I was too much in the pit of fear to read clearly what I wrote. It's not based on that; it is based on the past several months of parenting Ladybug and Brother. I will hopefully make it more clear as I write their assessments. Thanks to all for the words of encouragement, though! :)

  5. Bad days are hard . . . and we all have them. Thank you for sharing your honest feelings and struggles! Also, that doll is amazing. So beautiful and looks like it is perfect for cuddling.

  6. HUGS to you! Bad mom days are soooo hard and we all have them. I have thrown tantrums myself. Sigh. BUT you are still an amazing, wonderful, beautiful mama all-round! Even if the chastisement quote fit. Motherhood is tricky, isn't it? I love the doll you made. I do not have such talent. I remember reading Little Women with my daughter and loving that time together. Such a wonderful story! The rest of the week looked like a lot of fun. Blueberry picking and breakfast picnics- how delightful is that?

  7. We all have bad days, and it's so hard as a mom to know that it's affecting your family. I hope you are able to feel better soon! Kudos to you for finding the best in each of your children.

  8. The doll is adorable! That spray park looks like so much fun! Sorry about the chiggers. We used a ton of sunscreen this weekend and still ended up with sunburn. We all have bad days. Being a mom is so stressful and sometimes it comes out even though we don't mean for it to. I had a moment or two this week. I hope you have a great week!

  9. Don't be too hard on yourself. Healing hurt children is exhausting work. You are battling to reclaim broken hearts.
    Blessings, Dawn


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