I have no idea what I will do with my children for the summer! Eek! We'd hoped to take them to a town a few hundred miles away from where we live so they can see the ocean, but the gas prices are killing us and even driving into the City is steep. I have a friend in England who has seldom left her city and I couldn't BELIEVE it but now. . . I can believe it!
My husband is wanting to buy them some art supplies and have me let them work on art each day and do some school work. It's not about enjoying a break for them but sanity for me.
I get to plant flowers around the icons at my church. Things die that I plant but the priest's wife just laughed and said my hands are blessed this year. She usually does this and loves the job and it's not like she has a shortage of volunteers. I think she wants me more involved. I'm actually liking it. I'll probably plant what does well in our area. I'd thought about doing a Marian Garden in the catholic tradition, but I get snapped at about not being Catholic by a deacon when I do anything that reminds him of Catholics. (I was raised Lutheran which is close to Catholic and you can't get it out of me!)
There is a sidewalk art competition coming up in July-- I am getting a composition ready for that. I can't wait to start massage school. We have five athletic teams right now playing t-ball, base and soft ball. College is over but I am already worn out with my so-called break!
My operation is on hold-- I have a bad infection in my foot and they are giving me antibiotics for it. I've had it for several months and thought it would go away when I had strep, but alas it hung around.
I have 15 credits left if I don't minor in art. Last semester full time was too much. I am dropping down to a writing internship and an online class-- both to be done from home and locally. The last three classes are going to be a headache as they will be in the spring and it's costly to get to the classes with how high the prices are now.
The prices are fun-- they have become a challenge to the kids and I. Even in the best of times my husband and I have had to struggle and that's not bad. What's funny is that I realized that I spend about $120 or more each year on Dreft laundry detergent (it's good for people with allergies) so I have started making my own and it works well. I also make my own dishwasher detergent which I spend even more on each year. I did not know that I could make my own. In the back yard we have a laundry line and clothes get dry faster than they do in the dryer even in my cool weather! I spend about $250 a year (combined) on laundry and dishwasher detergent and I have just spent about $50 on a years' supply for both. Making them is not hard.
The boys are learning to bake brownies and cookies and the other stuff that the girls seem born knowing how to make as they hang with me. My 12 year old was proud of her 8 year old brother for making some really good brownies and had me sample both of them and ask which was better-- I'd not say but agreed that they were both delicious. He was proud of himself. They are helping me bake bread every night. They have also agreed to help me with a vegetable garden. Forced economy can be fun if you are able to respond to it well.
Mother's Day is this weekend. My church doesn't get into it, but I wish I had money to take my children out like I send my mother flowers on my birthday. I may complain, but they are all great kids. They just got home from school and gave me presents-- the best kind that get lost normally. This year I have a box to put the presents in. They are hand printed butterflies and hand print birds and flowers. I will make a nice lunch on Saturday night and we will go on a hike on Sunday.
I've changed my music to Willie Nelson-- You were Always on My Mind and Toby Keith with Willie in Whiskey for my Men. I grew up listening to Willie-- I hated him. I was raised to hate marijuana smoke and the lifestyle, yet there my parents were, listening to him and Johny Cash and other country music. They'd play him and many other country musicians at night. This time of the year with the windows open, you could smell faint aromas of horse manure, hay and clover and maybe, if the wind was just right, the tractor. My parents would have drinks and the house had a party atmosphere. They'd have friends over and there'd usually be drinking but nothing bad and laughter filling the house. After the age of 14, I'd have often made the dinner for everyone and helped serve it on a table that I'd set. (I liked doing this-- I am not suggesting child labor!)
Since last year I have started to listen to this again. I hardly drink because even small amounts of fermented fruit cause me to break out, but I like to have a glass of wine when I can afford what my parents, wine connoisseurs shared with me and my brother. My kids hated it but as soon as I told them that their grand parents loved it, they tolerate it. Music like this massages my mind-- stress from money problems goes away because money was not an issue to my parents as far as I understood it. The food always tastes better. The kids ask about their cowboy grandfather and I tell them funny stories. My husband loves coming home and hearing the music when he parks the car.