Mar 11, 2016

A Not Yet Forgotten Moment

I have one grandma that loves telling us stories, but my other grandma never thinks her stories would interest us and therefore keeps them to herself.   Now that she's aging, she's sadly starting to forget the stories.  And besides that, she's wrong - her stories would very much interest me.

My grandma Deonna (Morgan) Van Nosdol, my dad in the middle, and my two uncles.
Sometimes I try to get tricky and ask round about questions to get her to tell me stuff from her past.  She gets upset when she can't remember certain things.  But then sometimes things just come right out.

For instance, a few weeks ago I was talking to her about a frustration I was having with one of my kids, and asked what my dad was like when he was younger.  Grandma started talking about how my dad was a very calm and serious child.  He would go outside behind their house, over by the clothes line, and build stuff all day.  He had wood and nails and he would keep himself entertained while my Uncle Bart played Tarzan by climbing all over their swing set.

She got a little smile on her face while she remembered.  It makes me think that maybe she misses those days.  And that maybe I should focus a little less on the frustrating parts of raising kids because some day I'll be the old forgetful one, happy to remember things like nerf guns and school plays.

Mar 10, 2016

get it together man

We've been making changes around here lately.  Because I was tired of feeling like we were constantly playing "why is life going too fast, how many things did we forget today, and can't I just take a nap?!"  (It's not a very fun game to play, and yet we seem to be doing it a lot.)

So I made a meal plan - complete with assigned children helpers (because my kids should really know how to cook stuff by now).  And we listed ideas as a family, and individually, on what we could work on.  Then I made "expectations of...." papers for each person that are now hanging on our wall.  (Not that everyone always follows through on what is expected of them, but at least now no one can claim, "I didn't know I wasn't supposed to shove my dirty socks in the crack between my dresser and the wall!" and "You never said I had to shower more than once a year!" and "What homework?")

I also made some work goals.  Among them was finally launching my own independent online store (which wasn't hard, but took many many hours).  If you want to look at it, here you go:

One of the biggest changes though is that I gave up my office.

I really liked having an office.  It had a door that closed and everything, and it wasn't in my bedroom (that was my least favorite arrangement ever).  But now we have another bedroom and my office lives here.

That's our living room.  Except we call it "the front room" because it's not like it ever functioned as a formal living room or anything.

Most of our books were in this room before.  We made the kids move all of them.  You wouldn't believe the amount of drama that incurred.  Opie was like, "I'm sweating!"  And I was like, "It's good for you - it's exercise."  And then Two Bits was like, "I hate exercise!"  And that was followed by very loud complaining, some tears, and much whining.  But it got done and no one even died.

And now Monkey has his own room for the very first time ever, and Opie is preparing to share his room with Spike (once Spike decides to start sleeping through the night - because I'd rather hang out in my room at 3 AM than in a room that smells like 11 year old boy feet).

There are some pros and cons to this new working situation.

For one, I can no longer pretend to not be home when someone knocks on the front door.  Because the widow right there looks out onto the front porch, and it's really hard to pretend to not notice when someone is looking right at you.

Also, I really miss having a door.  Doors are my favorite.

However, this new location has greatly improved my ability to multitask.  For instance, I can now do laundry, and play peek-a-boo over the edge of my desk, while working all day.

And it's not just a game for babies, but is enjoyed by children of all ages.

Also, it gave Opie the amazing opportunity to make and enforce this sign:

I'm starting to feel like things are running a little more smoothly around here.  I wouldn't say that we're completely on top of everything, but I don't feel like I'm constantly on the verge of becoming Gertrude the Unstable Stress Donkey anymore, and that's never a bad thing.