I know I've used this excuse before: Life happens so fast that it's hard to get that "ripened perspective" that I crave before writing about Life. It seems for several years, now, I've been just waiting for things to settle down so I can gain some perspective to write about it all.
Likely, things won't settle down anytime soon, so here goes the random updates:
Ben, who is in the midst of a 9-month seasoning training with the Air Force Reserves, has been enjoying a 30 day "break" from his usual swing shift. This 30 day class, called QTP, has been a lovely daytime-shift, with lots of free time to spend with our family together. :) I have loved planning meals again, cooking dinner, waking up with him for Quiet Time before work, and having "Daddy's Home!" time when he returns in the early afternoon (sometimes late morning!)
Sadly, the swing shift will come upon us again in late June. It will likely continue through November and into December. When it comes to a close, we have a lot of ideas of what we will be doing, but none of them is for sure, yet.
See, Ben has figured out "what he wants to do when he grows up." And it starts with finishing a college degree. It's just that the degree requires that he quit working. You know.....I'm sure a lot of you have been there. You have to choose: Work or School. Rarely can an adult with dependents go back to school without the other spouse providing a full-time income.
Well, that "Other Spouse" is me. If my studio could provide enough income for Ben to go to school and play "stay-at-home-dad" he would. Technically, I do make a good enough hourly wage that I wouldn't have to work 40 hours a week, but....it would need to be about 4-5 full afternoons of private lessons. Intense, yes....but worth it to get us to the point where Ben would be Edumificated. ;) As of now, I have 14 students, and it supplements our income nicely. Whether I'll be up in the 20's by December remains to be seen. There's a Big Question Mark hovering over 2014.
Lately, we've been missing you all back East. And back Mid-West. And down South-West. And over on Europe-Side. This area is so transient.....people we've become attached to in the 8 years of living here have come and gone regularly, and only a few friendships we've formed here are actually still within this community. Somehow, people like us--willing to build a home and stick it out in a community--are an anomaly. I guess you have to have a BUNCH of people willing to make a community in order to have a community. *sigh*
Other random updates:
- Violet may or may not be going to public school in the fall. Because of how much she loves people, and how hard it is to engage our Community in other ways, we have registered her for first grade in public school (0.8 miles from our house) for the fall in hopes that we will become better acquainted with our neighbors, get involved in the classroom, and see opportunities to be Light & Salt here. But depending on Ben's work schedule we may decide last-minute to homeschool. If he is only home from 10-2, we will not want to put Violet in school during those hours. But she is reading FLUENTLY, and advanced in just about every topic, so I'm not worried about the academics. Our family life is something we have had to almost fight for lately, so her schooling comes second to that.
- She is coming to the end of book 1 in Suzuki piano. She's quite a singer, too. Loves to sing more than play, but is good at both. She loves to RUN FAST, and enjoyed gymnastics this past winter.
- Grace turned 3 last month, and we had a HUGE party.....more people than have every congregated in our home (about 35). It was a great time. While having nailed potty-training over a year ago, she is still working on getting through the night without a diaper. She's quite the fashionista, loves to dress herself & pick out clothes and shoes when we go shopping. I never thought you needed to try clothes on a 3 year old before buying them, but this girl NEEDS TO. Grace plays "Mississippi Hot Dog" (Missy-Hop Dog, in her words) with great finesse and delight. She is quite the little practicer. Loves to do repetitions of just about any task, whether it be emptying the dishwasher, picking up her room, sorting laundry, or playing piano. She's my little Repeater.
- I'm still playing/singing for our church, and organizing the worship service on Sundays. It's become such a spiritually positive thing in my life/our lives that I don't know how I've ever done without it!
- The summer is creeping in here in the PNW. We have had a couple of days of temperatures warm enough to swim in the lake. LOVE being so close to water here.
- We have the beginnings of a garden in our backyard: a half-wall and a pile of dirt/compost. It's exciting!
- Several projects are lined up for this summer, including a patio in the back.....and possibly some swings/slides for the girls.
So that's that. Life goes on.
Faster and Faster.
Faster and Faster.